Campfire Cooking In Another World With My Absurd Skill Season 1 Review — A wholesome adventure that lacks depth

Season 1

Episode Guide

My Absurd Skill Is Unexpectedly Useful -| Review Score – 3/5
The Salient Villager Is A Living Legend -| Review Score – 3/5
My Super Power Is All About Cooking -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Cannot Start A Journey Without a Map -| Review Score – 3.5/5
The Goddess of Wind Has a Sweet Tooth -| Review Score – 3.5/5
Growth Happens Out of Nowhere -| Review Score – 4/5
The Wolf Dances With Monsters -| Review Score – 3/5
All of the Boss Monsters are Tasty -| Review Score – 3/5
Hunting Quests Are All About Meat and Money -| Review Score – 3/5
My Two Familiars Are Too Overpowered -| Review Score – 3/5
Doing Business For The Missus -| Review Score – 3/5
Adventures Are as Countless as Varieties of Food -| Review Score – 3/5

 

Studio Mappa has been on a roll as of late. They’ve been dishing out many favorable projects over the years and have gained a massive following for themselves. With how well-received Attack On Titan, Chainsaw Man, and Jujutsu Kaisen have been with critics and fans alike, it certainly feels like the studio could do no wrong.

Like all great studios though, you can’t always expect every project to be a proficient hit. Campfire Cooking In Another World With My Absurd Skill (Campfire Cooking) exemplifies that.

This anime delivers 12 episodes with runtimes of about 23 minutes each. The anime’s directed by Kiyoshi Matsuda and is adapted from a light novel written by Ren Eguchi and illustrated by Masa. Unlike Studio Mappa’s other projects, Campfire Cooking has its cast get into some adventuring and cooking-related mischief. Although it has several imperfections, the anime delivers some decent humor, fun characters, and fine action sequences to satisfy folks.

This story takes place in the Kingdom of Reijseger. Our protagonist Mukoda Tsuyoshi has been summoned to this world alongside several humans to defeat the Demon King. Mukoda and his allies have supernatural powers, but Mukoda’s “Online Grocery” power is considered useless, so the king allows him to live an ordinary life here while the others pursue the Demon King. After joining up with a squad of explorers due to his cooking skills, Mukoda and his crew meet a fearsome mythical wolf.

The wolf offers to become Mukoda’s familiar since he’s unable to resist Mukoda’s delicious meals. Mukoda names the wolf, Fel, and the two travel the world to help Mukoda establish himself as a fine adventurer and merchant. The story will appeal to many casual audiences who crave something laid-back and cheerful. The anime introduces some enticing RPG-like elements concerning guilds,  side-quests, character abilities, and a neat level system.

This anime has characters traveling through multiple rich environments. They’ll be exploring goblin and lizard-filled dungeons, meeting fellow travelers, conversing with merchants and butchers, and exploring towns. The narrative includes some good action arrangements to build tension for its cast. Although Mukoda’s familiars get into more riveting fights than he does, there are a few appealing battles that’ll get your attention. Not only that, but this anime delivers some pleasing situational humor and physical comedy.

From Fel throwing Mukoda into a herd of goblins to Mukoda’s amusing facial reactions to Sui’s adorableness, the anime delivers some entertaining bits that’ll make you smile. Otherwise, there’s not much to look forward to in Campfire Cooking. Sure, there are some comforting moments with our cast and fabulous cooking segments, but there are no stakes or meaningful obstacles for our cast to overcome. Everything feels like it’s being handed to them on a golden platter.

While the characters must rely on their powers to accomplish these tasks, they’re so over-leveled and skilled that any mission they tackle feels on par with early-game side quests you’d find in a typical RPG. The story also feels overly formulaic and repetitive. Most episodes follow a pattern of Mukoda and his friends tackling a task, taking dinner breaks, completing missions, and sleeping. If the story had balanced out its stimulating cooking and slice-of-life scenarios with more moments of danger and uncertainty, it would’ve helped this anime’s storyline feel more thrilling and less tasteless.

The anime’s main trio of Fel, Mukoda, and Sui were entertaining characters despite lacking depth. Fel has a hot-tempered attitude, but a strong love for fighting and food. Many will adore his dynamics with Mukoda and his attempts at helping Mukoda attain better confidence in himself. Mukoda has a likable personality and incredible cooking skills. Sui is a cutesy blob with great battle power and provides Mukoda comfort when he needs it most. As a trio, they play off each other well and gain new tricks over time.

However, they don’t receive enough authentic development. We don’t know too much about Mukoda’s past, so it’s hard to compare him to who he was in the original world to how he is now in this one. Viewers receive tidbits about Mukoda’s life in the real world during his conversations with Fel during dinner, but they feel like one-off, insignificant comments. Furthermore, it feels like Mukoda’s a walking cheat code in a video game due to his “Online Grocery” ability giving him ingredients and tools that’ll make his life easier.

It would’ve been better if the ability was balanced and didn’t give Mukoda and his friends vast advantages over their foes. Despite learning abilities like Stone Wall, Stone Bullet, and Fireball, Mukoda doesn’t voluntarily join Fel or Sui in fights that much. He has them fight his battles for him, which diminishes his growth to become a more formidable adventurer in this world. Fel and Sui also suffer from similar instances where their personalities are great, but they lack genuine growth due to their overpowered nature.

As for the side characters they meet along the way, they don’t add much to the narrative. They simply serve to add more comedy to the story and to give Mukoda and his friends more unmerited advantages. While Mukoda and his allies have great chemistry and personalities, there isn’t much here to call them masterfully-written characters. The anime’s animation is certainly pleasing to the eye though. Studio Mappa showcases why they’re one of the best in the business with fluid cooking and battle sequences.

When we got to see Fel, Sui, and Mukoda in action, my heart was pumping. The cooking segments looked more astonishing than the fights since some battles offer more lackluster stills in comparison. Seeing Mukoda add spices to his dishes and witnessing the meat sizzle in the pan, enticed me to head to my fridge to cook something up! By comparison though, the landscapes, cities, and buildings could’ve been more varied in design. As a result, most environments look redundant. It made me wish our trio went someplace different instead of another kingdom.

The music, voice acting, and sound effects are mostly satisfying. The music and effects fit Campfire Cooking’s fantasy themes well. It wasn’t anything spectacular but it got the job done in helping me stay immersed in the settings and sequences that appealed to me. The voice actors and actresses nail their character roles well. I never felt they portrayed our characters poorly. If there was one voice actress who deserves the most praise it’d be Sui’s Japanese voice actress Hina Kiyo. She gave the slime a voice many people will resonate with and it always made me feel at ease hearing Sui share his thoughts with Fel and Mukoda.

After dishing out massive hits, it made sense for Studio Mappa to tackle a relaxing project like Campfire Cooking. It’s not a series that will blow people’s minds with its storytelling or its characters. It’s a tale that many can watch when they need to break away from more complex, action-centric, or drama-heavy programming. At the same time, this anime had many opportunities to offer fans something indelible and exhilarating but chose to play it safe instead. While it doesn’t cook up a mind-blowing experience, it’ll leave fans restful all the same.


Feel free to check out more of our TV Show Reviews here!

  • Verdict - - 6.5/10
    6.5/10
6.5/10

Leave a comment