Wise Man’s Grandchild (Kenja no Mago) Review (Spoiler Free)

Been a while since we’ve looked at a fantasy anime on the blog, so let’s change things up with Wise Man’s Grandchild.

Like many others I’ve watched recently, I went into this one knowing nothing.

Unfortunately, I still know nothing.

But I do know what I thought of this anime at least, so let’s cover that here.

Synopsis

A Japanese salaryman is killed in a traffic accident and reincarnated into a fantasy world as a baby, who is taken in and raised by an old man who was once a powerful mage and others. Our reincarnated protagonist, Shin Wolford, quickly becomes a very powerful mage, whose creativity allows him to craft incredible magic spells. The catch is that Shin grew up isolated from society, leaving him with a lack of social skills at the age of 15.

The solution? To enroll in the kingdom’s magic academy, where Shin will meet new people, face new challenges, and so on!

But why isekai?

Generally a good question to ask when reviewing an isekai anime is something along the lines of “how does the story benefit from being an isekai, instead of just a standard fantasy anime?”.

It’s a good question to ask here.

Well, I genuinely don’t have an answer this time.

The plot doesn’t even make sense because this is an isekai. Shin is supposed to lack social skills, but he’s also apparently supposed to have the memories of a Japanese person who grew up in a society and became a salaryman.

It’s almost as if they had a fully fleshed out fantasy story about an orphaned boy who was raised by a mage in the forest, and decided to just tack on the isekai bit in the beginning because it’s the trendy thing to do.

Technically, he uses his modern knowledge of physics, chemistry, and whatnot to improve his spells, but honestly, it doesn’t feel all that necessary. Reincarnated or not he’s still a prodigy.

Standard protagonist, power fantasy

I don’t know if “power fantasy” is the correct terminology for this, but anyways you’ll understand soon enough regardless.

Shin Wolford is a pretty bland character. His personality is the fairly common “clueless lawful good” archetype. The guy who doesn’t pick up on any social cues, and sort of goes against the grain, but only because he doesn’t realize that what he’s doing isn’t what normal people would do. Couple that with his desire to always do the right thing, and you’ve got your “clueless lawful good” character.

Usually we see this type in harem anime, but in this case, we see it in the form of a power fantasy. Meaning that our protagonist also happens to be much more powerful than everyone around him, and so his decisions essentially shape and affect everyone around him.

Like with harem anime, power fantasy is another situation where the viewer can basically fantasize about what they’d do in the protagonist’s place, and given that the protagonist is socially clueless, feel superior to the protagonist in at least that aspect. And I can’t take credit for this explanation, as it was actually told to me by fellow blogger Fred, and I haven’t forgotten it as it’s the perfect way to sum up (at least one reason) why the “clueless” protagonist type exists.

It certainly feels like this element is at play in Wise Man’s Grandchild.

Typical fantasy follow-through

Given that you know the type of protagonist we are dealing with, you may be able to imagine how this anime looks and feels, and you’re probably spot on.

If not, well, let’s just say it’s a fairly standard fantasy anime. You’ve got magic, battles, some surface-level medieval politics, some fantasy races, monsters, and so on. The overarching story for Wise Man’s Grandchild isn’t bad, but it’s nothing that impressive. Very basic, just enough to keep things moving, I’d say.

Rating

I’ll give Wise Man’s Grandchild a 7.5 / 10.

As someone who enjoys fantasy anime, it’s no surprise that I enjoyed this one. Even if by all accounts it’s an average fantasy anime, for me that’s an enjoyable anime. There’s not much depth to this one, and it really shouldn’t have bothered with trying to toss in the isekai intro. But it’s still an alright anime overall.

If you’re like me and are easily satisfied by fantasy anime, you’ll probably be fine with this. I can’t imagine anyone being blown away by it though, it’s very status quo.


And that’s that.

Believe it or not, we’ve still got a few more fantasy anime reviews to come in the near future. I guess I’ve just sort of lucked out with the way the industry has gone in the past decade or so when it comes to these trends as there’s no shortage of fantasy anime these days.

Even if many of them are average at best.

I’ll take an average fantasy over an average anime from many other genres.

Anyways, we’ll keep on going with the fantasy reviews soon enough.

Until then,
Thanks for reading.

3 thoughts on “Wise Man’s Grandchild (Kenja no Mago) Review (Spoiler Free)

  1. I watching WMGS a few months ago, and it was pretty good. But you have a point, there really wasn’t any reason for it to be a isekai. It was just fine as a fantasy anime, it didn’t really need any trans-dimensional reincarnation.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m watching The Faraway Paladin and it’s sort of the same deal there, in that it seems like the reincarnation is just used as an excuse for why the protagonist is so intelligent from a young age.

      Makes you wonder though, if you were reincarnated as a baby with all your memories of being an adult, would you really end up being a genius? Or when you become an adult, would you just sort of end up as a regular adult who was just smart as a child? I know if it happened to me, my laziness wouldn’t exactly just disappear, for example!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I know what you mean, just because you were seen as a smart child because you were as intelligent as an adult, doesn’t mean that you would end up as a genius adult. That would only work if you were a genius from the beginning. A regular adult put in a child’s body would just grow up to be another regular adult.

        Liked by 2 people

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