REVIEW: ‘So I’m a Spider, So What?’ Episode 17 – “What am I doing?”

Reading Time: 3 minutes

So I'm a Spider So What Episode 17 - But Why Tho?So I’m a Spider So What Episode 17 toes the line of boring, focusing on Shun and company trudging through the depths of the labyrinth. From Millepensee, So I’m a Spider, So What? adapts Okina Baba’s light novel series of the same name, available in English from Yen Press. Part of the Crunchyroll Originals lineup, the isekai fantasy follows a class of students who are reincarnated into a fantasy world that feels heavily based on an RPG video game. Some are humans or elves, others have been reincarnated as dragons. Our heroine is reincarnated as a spider, and the story takes it from there.

The protagonist is incapacitated for most of this episode. Don’t worry, she can still use her magic, she is just a comically censored severed head floating aimlessly on the water. The Demon Lord blew her to bits last episode, so that immortality skill became relevant a lot sooner than many were probably expecting. It is entertaining comedy from the show, certainly, but that is about it on the protagonist’s side of the story this time around.

So I’m a Spider So What Episode 17 focuses more Shun’s group. Eager to get through the labyrinth as soon as possible, they make steady progress until their guide, Basgath, insists they rest. Although the group has been making short work of the monsters, Basgath reminds both the party and viewers that the stakes are still high. The group is at risk of getting “Labyrinth Sickness.” Since they are deep underground, they can easily lose track of time and how many days have passed. It is a really intriguing concept to have something other than fantasy monsters present a threat in the show. Unfortunately, it isn’t utilized well, as it is briefly mentioned in the beginning and not brought up again. It felt more as though it was used as a plot device to make the group sit and talk rather than up any stakes in the show.

As stated above, most of this episode consists of “sitting and talking.” Basgath tells the party about the “Nightmare of the Labyrinth,” which is essentially facts the viewers already know since we have been following the heroine. The only difference is we get to hear the human perspective on her actions. It adds some dramatic irony, but the show has consistently been doing this for a few weeks now, so it isn’t anything new. There is one moving part of the conversation, however. Basgath reminds Shun that it is okay to run if his life is in danger, and those who have a problem with him valuing his life should fight themselves. It is the first time an adult has actually treated Shun as the kid he still is. This whole party is a group of teenagers and young adults. The pressure of being a Hero was thrown on Shun’s shoulders in an unfair and arguably cruel way by his country. Ideally, Basgath’s empathy will resonate with Shun beyond their conversation this episode.

There is a visual gripe I have with this episode, and that is the Demon Lord. The choice to CG animate her is a bizarre one, especially when there are scenes of her cutting back and forth between 2D and moving like a stiff video game boss. It just feels unnecessary, especially when no other humanoid character has been given this animation treatment. However, praise must be given to the audio design in this episode. When Shun encounters, and speaks with, the Nightmare’s Vestiges, their varied, overlapping voices were eerie and completely pulled me in as a viewer. Some sounded clear, and others almost came out as static, it was fantastic and it shows the show can use the entire atmosphere to pull viewers in when it really wants to.

So I’m a Spider So What Episode 17 is about as average as it comes for this show. Aside from an intriguing “confrontation” towards the end of the episode, it is mostly just characters talking about events in which viewers already know more context. Shun is finally shown some empathy by an adult, thank god.

So I’m a Spider, So What? is streaming now on Crunchyroll.

So I'm a Spider So What? Episode 17
5.5/10

TL;DR

So I’m a Spider So What? Episode 17 is about as average as it comes for this show. Aside from an intriguing “confrontation” towards the end of the episode, it is mostly just characters talking about events in which viewers already know more context. Shun is finally shown some empathy by an adult, thank god.