If we ever meet these characters again, it will be too soon.
©HIRUKUMA/KADOKAWA/Reborn as a Vending Machine, I Now Wandering in the Dungeon Production Department
So funny. I didn’t enjoy my time with this week’s episode. I found the Tasmanian devils more annoying than funny and spent most of the episode worrying about what the next episode would be like if Lamis didn’t show up at the eleventh hour to get things back on track. However, that doesn’t mean I think the episode itself is bad. Instead, I think this episode did exactly what it was intended to do: make us all uncomfortable with a situation like Boxxo itself.
To put it bluntly, this episode is what would have happened if someone less intelligent than Lamis had found Boxxo. It only took her a few minutes to realize that Boxxo was a sentient being and developed a simple form of communication with him. As for the Tasmanian devils, they had problems with the concept even after it was explained to them directly. They never even thought that Boxxo could only say certain phrases. They assumed that because he couldn’t talk to them directly, he must not be a smart person.
Intentionally or not, there’s a bigger message here—a message about how people (specifically foreigners) are perceived when they don’t speak a country’s default language well. Instead of being seen as brave and resourceful to live somewhere far outside their comfort zone, they are seen as stupid for not being fluent in their native language (often by people who know only one language).
As for Boxxo, this is the first time he’s been treated like this since coming to the fantasy world. He tries to teach his cubs how to communicate yes/no as he has done with others before but fails spectacularly. Instead of communicating, his goal quickly became to demonstrate his cognitive abilities. When they were hungry, he gave them food. Before he was in danger, he tried to show them that he had a barrier that could protect them. When they were about to be attacked at night, he woke them up and gave them the necessary items to defeat the oncoming enemy. But even making the wheel for themselves when they complained about how hard it was to move him wasn’t enough to overcome their prejudice that he was nothing but a magical tool. doing things randomly—this in itself is a pretty solid message in this regard with blind adherence to hasty judgments and baseless assumptions.
So overall, with a pretty deep theme and a story that shows just how lucky Boxxo was, this is a pretty solid episode—even if it’s one I never want to watch again.
• I like that his main upgrade isn’t his ability to speak or move with his own powers—but his ability to transform into other coin-operated machines.
• It seems that, even without Boxxo, when Lamis is focused enough, she can hit her target.
• Although this is just a joke, I think “Don’t anger the girl with super powers” is a pretty good lesson for the Menagerie of Fools.
• I wonder if Boxxo’s aerial photographs of the maze will become important later on.
Reincarnated as a Vending Machine, I now roam the dungeons currently streaming on Crunchyroll.
Disclosure: Kadokawa World Entertainment (KWE), a wholly owned subsidiary of Kadokawa Corporation, is the majority owner of Anime News Network, LLC. One or more of the companies mentioned in this article are part of the Kadokawa Group of Companies.