Sekai Saikou no Ansatsusha, Isekai Kizoku ni Tensei Suru

Title:Sekai Saikou no Ansatsusha, Isekai Kizoku ni Tensei Suru
The World's Finest Assassin Gets Reincarnated in a Different World as an Aristocrat
Keywords: , , , , ,
Notables: AKABANE Kenji
Animation - SILVER LINK
UEDA Reina
66 year old Lugh was raised from the day he was born to be a professional assassin. Throughout his life he loyally served 'The Organization', but after completing what was supposed to be his final 'hit' before retirement, he was betrayed and assassinated himself. This makes no sense at all to him and he dies in a state of extreme frustration. But after death he finds himself offered an unusual option by a 'Goddess': he can be reincarnated in the usual manner, losing all memories of his past life, or he can retain them--if, in his new life, he's willing to carry out a hit which the Goddess desires.

12 episodes
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Watch Stretch [series:4381#628]
(12 episodes watched)

Well, most of episode one of this show is about how, as described above, Lugh was once a skillful real-world assassin and has agreed to be one in a sword-and-sorcery world as well. It was pretty neat; he knew a lot of interesting tricks of the trade and mentioned how he made a habit of suppressing his emotions since they 'only get in the way'. Even if he is a professional killer, he seemed like a person one could sympathize with, since he bore no hard feelings and was only doing his job (and the one target we saw seemed to deserve his fate). The problem is, before the segment about Lugh this episode began with a shorter one about how assassinations are apparently carried out in the alternate world he will be reborn into, and that was nowhere near as intriguing. Rather than skill and experience. it's all a matter of knowing the right magic spells and being good rather than evil. Characters are introduced via the old 'the enemy of my enemy is my friend' approach, i.e, these girls must be good since the men they are killing (part of a human traffic outfit) are clearly very bad. Basically, the total opposite of everything I found entertaining about Lugh's past life. It's hard to imagine how the coolness and professionalism he once displayed could possibly carry over into his new situation, given what we've been shown so far. I fear that the most intriguing part of Lugh's life is already over and we will be observing a distinctly inferior one. Also, why does a 'Goddess' need an assassin? Couldn't she just 'will' that this Hero person be dead, and it would happen? I have a bad feeling that the best part of this show may already be done, but will continue watching just in case I'm wrong.

Actually, episode two was better than I had expected. I had figured that the next thing we knew Lugh would be a teenage bachelor in another world flirting with numerous girls and killing bad guys. Actually he has a fairly lengthy discussion with the Goddess about what will be expected of him, what skills he will choose for this RPG-like new life, and why she wants this particular 'hero' eliminated, etc. It seemed reasonable and Lugh accepts the terms. He is reincarnated into the family of Tuatha De, seemingly a house of skilled doctors but secretly professional assassins who carry out the orders of the King of Aluan. Lugh conveniently keeps his first name. It seems these are honorable assassins who only kill people who deserve it. Lugh notices that he has regained a measure of the emotions he suppressed in his previous life. His silly mother, Esri, and serious father, Cian, are unusual. In fact the degree of 'deepness' this show goes into regarding the characters and the scenario in general reminded me of Mushoku Tensei. What Lugh really needs are magical skills, and a tutor, Dia Vielkone, arrives--a 10 year old girl while Lugh is 7.

As usual for isekai series, Lugh's latent mana and magical potential is off the charts and before long he is teaching things to Dia. He is so good at everything he does that it would be easy to wonder why he would need to be an assassin at all. Apparently this hero that he is supposed to kill has such fantastic abilities that Lugh will need to know pretty much everything in order to take him down; this will obviously be a video game sort of fight, not a real world one. In isekai anime, it doesn't seem possible to simply trick someone into trusting you then stick a knife in their back. Being a high-level character must impart a sort of ESP that lets you know when someone is planning to kill you. Or maybe that's just one of the rules of the RPG--players cannot be killed without a fair fight.

In episode four Lugh happens across an abandoned blond girl, Tarte, and recruits her as his assistant (she, too, had unusually high mana). I wonder if the girls in the illustration above will be a sort of assassin harem that Lugh commands. Tarte is supposed to have considerable mana yet apparently she was easy for Lugh to 'brainwash'. That is vaguely disturbing, as the girls may all be submissive ones who worship Lugh and would gladly have sex with him if he wishes. It's an implication I have seen before: they are deadly fighters yet submit to his will, so he must be superior (and you, the male viewer, can picture yourself in his place). Anyway, Lugh continues his thorough training as an assassin and nears completion. He is recognized as the heir to the leadership of the entire Tuatha De clan, but not without a challenger. He has never told his father about the promise he made before he was born. He wasn't the only assassin that the Goddess recruited; but the others have been dismal failures for one reason or another. We have yet to meet the hero and why the Goddess is so determined to kill him (I assume) remains a mystery.

In episode six Lugh recruits Maha, the second girl in his assassin harem. As soon as the episode introduced us to the group of industrious orphans that she once belonged to, I got a bad feeling. In part it was because I would have preferred that we get on with the main plot, Lugh's quest to assassinate the hero, than include these girls at all. The abduction of Maha and her friends by a sex trafficking ring was ugly and sordid, but also corny in the sense that Lugh (now posing as the merchant Illig Bator) easily fixes everything once he learns what's going on. And of course Maha has (WAIT FOR IT) considerable Mana.

A good deal of time is spent on Lugh/Illig setting up a cosmetics company as a cover for his actual profession. He mentions at one point that he's still 13 and has five years to complete his 'hit' on the Hero; it feels like this show will use every bit of that time, and the actual attempt won't take place until the day before Lugh's 19th birthday. He still has all of his skills from our world but must learn all sorts of magic and level up in this video game-like one. With the plot moving as slowly as it is, will a mere twelve episodes really be enough time to reach a climax? Back home after his two year apprenticeship, Lugh is offered a difficult and interesting choice. Having made it, he is assigned his first professional hit, of a reprehensible spy/drug dealer.

In episode nine we learn that mana enables a person to run super fast and makes them harder to kill than an ordinary one. That's hard to believe; this world seems to have more in common with video games than with the real world in the past. People who spend a lot of time playing such games may like rules like this, but they annoy me. It creates an inherently unjust caste system in which those who have acquired certain abilities are on a higher level than those who have not. What you have matters more than who you are. Then again, Lugh is an 'aristocrat' after all. Anyway, Lugh notices a slight pang of regret after carrying out his first true assassination. He reasons that this is because whereas in his past life he killed whoever he was told to kill without thinking twice, now he can choose whether to obey his orders or not. This sort of came as a surprise to me; I wish it had been made more clear that he has been learning to think for himself in his new life--perhaps by him noticing differences from his past one as he trained.

Despite the harem of female assistants that he has assembled, and who adore him, Lugh's true love is someone else. In episode ten he gets a shock when he is instructed to kill someone he knows. But it turns out that his real assignment is just the opposite (the explanation why didn't convince me), so there goes that cliffhanger. Tarte realizes just how important making his own choices is to Lugh--which paradoxically makes her do just the opposite. And still not so much as a hint who this 'hero' person is (I hope they don't try to pull the same fast one on us and have it be Dia or someone Lugh already knows). In episode 12 Lugh apparently uses magic to employ an outer space weapons system from his past lifetime to carry out a seemingly impossible task--say, what?! How is that possible? This started out as a plausible (once you suspend disbelief about the Goddess and special reincarnation) story with interesting details about how a real-world assassin might operate, but it has been becoming more and more like a video game, with magic substituting for clever tricks of the trade. This show has been getting mediocre ratings at ANN, and I sort of wonder why I am still watching it.

Last updated Thursday, November 17 2022. Created Monday, October 11 2021.

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