Re: Zero − Starting Life in Another World is an adventure fantasy anime series produced in Japan. The series centres around a boy named Subaru Natsuki. One day, he suddenly gets transported to an unknown world. When Shinichirou Otsuka’s Re: Zero was finally all set to be serialized as a light novel in 2012, the usually chanted trait of the work – the incrementally more brutal ways that its characters were killed off, was not exactly something a novelty in anime or manga. Violence and gore – whether for shock value or as an integral thematic element, was something heavily featured in numerous works countless times before – in Miura’s Berserk, for example. What sets Re: Zero and its anime adaptation apart is not this shock value, as well-animated, played upon, and executed it might have been, but the unique contribution it makes to an otherwise bland genre of isekai – be it through organic and believable characterization, or, at the very least, the ‘Death By Return’ shenanigan, which was alone interesting enough to carry a work into the realm of intrigue across an ordinary anime. It does make itself vulnerable to the usual suspects of hated anime caveats – one-dimensional side-characters, inconsistent pace at places, but it redeems itself with the strong and mature characterization of the protagonist, if not anything else. The series is watched and loved all over the world
Re: Zero Plot:
The series revolves around a boy named Subaru Natsuki who is a Hikikomori. He is a gaming addict. He is suddenly sent to the fantasy world one night when visiting a convenience store, with no idea about how this whole ordeal came to pass. After his arrival, some thugs approach him and start beating him to a pulp. A mysterious silver-haired half-elf girl named Satella comes to his rescue. She also introduces her friend Puck to Subaru. She tells him that a thief called Felt had stolen her Insignia. He is grateful to Satella for saving him and thinks to return her the favor by helping her to find her Insignia. A stranger lurks in the shadow and starts following them. After finding her Insignia, both of them are killed by an unknown dark force who had been following them. However, Subaru revives again and notices that he has gained the power to “Return by Death”. After awakening, he meets and Satella again. He greets by calling out her name Stella, but this time she gets offended when he calls her by her name. In the parallel timeline, Subaru saves Satella’s life from Elsa who is an assassin. Satella introduces herself and tells her name is Emilia. She also tells Subaru about her Insignia was stolen and states that Felt has returned her back.
Later, Elsa arrives and kills both of them. They somehow survive and awake in an unknown mansion. They realize that it is the mansion of Margrave Mathers located in the Lugunica Kingdom. He gets introduced to Ram, Roswaal, and Rem and starts working as a Butler. He asks out Emilia for a date and she agrees, but the day of their date never comes. He keeps going back in time where he has first awakened on the bed. He keeps on repeating his previous actions in order to fulfill his date with Emilia. Later, he realizes the reason behind his dying and waking up again is a curse which was placed on him. To finish the curse and save the villagers from creatures, Subaru, Ram, and Rem visit the village. After returning to the mansion, Subaru gets into a fight and Emilia cuts all ties with him and tells him to leave the mansion. Some days later, Rem comes to warn him about some strange activities in the mansion. With Rem on his side, Subaru defeats the White Whale and the cult of Betelgeuse. He saves the life of villagers and Emilia and confesses his love for her. In season 2, Emilia and Subaru are in love with each other. She will later become the Witch of Envy. Rem may die forever by the hands of Emilia.
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Re: Zero Characters:
Subaru Natsuki: The protagonist of the series, Subaru is initially a hikikomori (i.e. a social recluse who keeps withdrawn because of undeveloped social skills), spending his time playing video games. After he suddenly gets transported into another world, however, the torture he is put through reshapes him as it traumatizes him. A black-haired youth of medium height and a slim frame, he is far away from the familiar overpowered isekai protagonist. He lacks the intelligence to read situations quickly, making him prone to irrational decision-making. He is loyal to his friends and has great resolve, which redeem him as a survivalist. Other than the Authority of Sloth and Authority of Greed, Subuaru also has the unique ‘Death By Return’ ability, which lets him reverse time by dying, which also reincarnates him in the process.
Emilia: A silver-haired half-elf, Emilia is the series’ main heroine, as she is inevitably presented as Subaru’s love interest – a trope that the anime, unfortunately, fails to overcome. A practitioner of spirit arts, Emilia is a forerunning candidate in the upcoming royal election which will determine the 42nd monarch of Lugunica. Hailing from the Frozen Forests, she is over a hundred years of age, but still a teenager in spirit. She has a sylph-like familiar named Puck, who has feline features.
Rem and Ram are twin demon sisters who work as maids in Roswaal’s mansion. Ram was a prodigy of her magical arts as a child, causing Rem to develop an inferiority complex. However, Ram’s gifts were lost when her horn was cut off as the Witch’s Cult attacked their village.
Re: Zero Season 2 Release Date:
Re: Zero, despite its many flaws and shortcomings, is still an anime that organically stretches itself thin across the genre spectrum of horror, and remains a very unique and largely unrivalled anime to this day. It had become the 21st most selling anime on home video media in 2016, grossing almost 70000 individual Bluray and DVD box sets sold. What was once a fairly niche attempt has now grown its own large-scale fanbase which extends outside Japan to a western audience as well. Given the demand of it, and the fact that the producers still have the license to exercise some freedom to making original content/improvisations on the source materials to develop another season of Re: Zero, the likeliness is high that there will eventually be a second season. However, there has not been any announcement from official sources to confirm its production – which means we still do not have a tentative air date scheduled for it either.
An OVA titled Re: Zero: Memory Snow was announced that aired on October 6, 2018. Do keep an eye out on us for the latest updates.
Re: Zero English Dubbing:
Fortunately for the Western audience, there is an English dub available. The English translation of Re: Zero is done by Yen Press. You can find dubbed episodes of this anime series on Funimation and Crunchyroll.
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