The Fandom Post

Anime, Movies, Comics, Entertainment & More

A Reincarnated Witch Spells Doom Vol. #01 Manga Review

4 min read

A shut-in gets reincarnated in a fantasy world only to once more become a shut-in due to her destructive magic powers.

Creative Staff
Story/Art: Tail Yuzuhara/sora
Translation/Adaptation: Timothy Gifford

What They Say
On her eighteenth birthday, shut-in Sena Shirai finally works up the courage to leave the comfort of her home—only to be hit by a truck! Luckily, she has a second chance at life as a witch in another world, but the only spells she can use are “explode” and “perish.” Unable to control her destructive power, Sena is shunned by the nearby villagers and doomed to live in isolation once again. But when a mysterious boy collapses at her doorstep on her (second) eighteenth birthday, will her fate finally turn around?

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Sena is shut-in who meets an untimely demise due to a reckless driver. As a result, the angel that reincarnates her into her new life grants her special powers. Unfortunately, those powers are the spells “Perish” and “Explode,” and they doom her to a life as a shut-in once more. But on her 18th birthday, a young boy collapses on her doorstep, triggering a series of events that bring Sena back out into the wider world.

A Reincarnated Witch Spells Doom is a misleading title. Yes, Sena is reincarnated, and she is called a witch. Moreover, she is the only character thus far who is labeled a witch. However, according to Sena herself, half the population of this fantasy world can cast magic. So magic is simply a normal part of everyday life, and it’s never clarified why Sena is a witch and other magic users are not.

The other thing that’s misleading about the title is that it makes Sena sound like a walking disaster zone. She’s not. Her “Perish” and “Explode” spells, destructive though they are, are firmly within her control. She’s even able to package the magical powers for commercial use as weed control. So rather than a harbinger of chaos, Sena’s a timid girl living quietly alone in the forest who happens to be capable of two spells no one else can cast.

The creators might have been better off keeping this a fantasy without the isekai factor. The first 30 pages are devoted to showing Sena’s life in Japan and how she got reincarnated with her particular powers. However, the knowledge and experiences she retains from modern Japan aren’t really critical to the story, and all that background about her being a shut-in before her second shut-in life simply results in a very slow start.

Moreover, the chain of events that led to Sena’s second shut-in life are rather convoluted. At the age of 10, she spectacularly destroyed a carriage in town, freaking out the inhabitants. As a result, she isolated herself in her forest home in fear of their wrath. Turns out, the townsfolk were actually grateful to her because she had destroyed the carriage to protect another child. Yet Sena conveniently forgot the critical fact that she saved someone’s life, and even though her mother and the friendly old peddler who delivers their supplies knew the truth, they neglected to clear up this misunderstanding, instead allowing it to drag for eight years.

Anyway, the second half of Chapter 3, where Sena demonstrates her powers to Prince Keith’s corps and accepts their invitation to go to the capital, is where the story really gets going. Apparently, the prince is involved in a succession struggle, and the kingdom’s under threat by dragons, who are undergoing their own succession issues. These conflicts, along with the mystery of Sena’s powers, which fall outside this world’s standard seven magical elements, create a decent fantasy plot.

In addition to the dragon crisis and factional palace conflict, the story appears to be setting up the prince as Sena’s love interest. As far as their relationship goes, it’s moving quite fast for a girl who’s lived apart from civilization for eight years and the guy she just met. Only three days, and this hard-core shut-in is leaving everything she’s known to follow him. But if you like perfect prince types, Keith fits the bill.

In terms of illustrations, the human characters, architectural elements, and objects are drawn in a pleasant, cute style. However, action scenes and magic scenes are hard to follow. The dragon scenes especially are heavy on speed lines that make it difficult to tell what you are looking at. If not for the character commentary, I wouldn’t understand what was happening in those panels.

Extras include the first four pages printed in color, creator notes, and bonus illustrations on the inside cover.

In Summary:
As you might guess from the title, A Reincarnated Witch Spells Doom is an isekai. However, so far there’s not much about main character Sena’s previous shut-in life that comes into play in her current shut-in life in a fantasy world where half the inhabitants wield magic and half do not. Perhaps those memories and experiences of modern Japan will prove crucial later, but for now, the plot is coming across more as a standard fantasy with a sheltered heroine who manifests unique magic powers, a noble prince embroiled in palace politics, and dragons who are currently ravaging the land.

Content Grade: B-
Art Grade: B
Packaging Grade: B+
Text/Translation Grade: B

Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Yen Press
Release Date: June 20th, 2023
MSRP: $13.00

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.