Re:Zero was one of my personal favorites from 2016, as it brought something new to the traditional formula it was built on. It follows Subaru, your typical shut-in who lives a relatively uneventful life, and is suddenly and inexplicably thrust into a fantasy world. However, despite this familiar narrative, Re:Zero is unique for two major reasons. First, Subaru does not suddenly have powers or skills as you would expect to possess in such a world, making him hopelessly weak. Second, each time Subaru dies, he simply revives at some point before his death, and must repeat the cycle until he can avoid his demise.

This presents an incredibly fascinating wrinkle into the typical story, as we get to witness the slow descent into madness that accompanies living through your own death countless times. Subaru himself is an interesting character in that he’s just generally terrible, and I don’t mean in the under-powered sense, rather he’s a horrible person. He has few redeeming qualities (though there are points where he shines) but in spite of that you can’t help but sympathize with him. His self confidence gets torn to ribbons as he’s suddenly thrust into this unknown world and forced (through his repeated demise) to realize that he’s powerless. This mental strain shows as Subaru tries to cope with his unfortunate circumstance in every unsightly way he can manage. While I wanted to hate him for his attitude and behavior I couldn’t stop myself from cheering him on, hoping that he could overcome the unforgiving circumstances that were forced upon him.

Re:Zero is definitely worth a watch, especially if your tired of the done-to-death “game world” trope. The world’s lore is very interesting, the characters all excellently designed and written, and the increasingly wild plot twists will leave you on the edge of your seat the entire time.

Number of times watched: 1

Would I recommend it?: Absolutely!