Overpowering characters in the isekai series frequently struggle with motivation, which is one of the numerous problems that they face. The accumulation of talents, weapons, or allies or love interests by our reincarnated heroes is frequently regarded as an acquisitional objective in and of itself. This is typically done with the intention of simply adding more things to an RPG character sheet for the sake of adding more things to it, under the guise that it is nice. It might be entertaining to picture that kind of power facilitating these fantasies, which is the basic minimum for this genre that must be avoided, but it is rarely helpful to actual storytelling. On the other hand, Saint is here to help us deal with that. Do not! The entire premise of I’m Just a Passing Beast Tamer! is based on the fact that it gives its protagonist a real-life reason to do what they believe in. An extremely, extremely ridiculous impetus.
At the outset, one of the things that I appreciate about Passing Beast Tamer is the fact that it takes a few moments to zero in on numerous aspects that I find lacking in the majority of contemporary isekai and how they treat their protagonists. Explanations are provided regarding Heroine Kanata’s previous life circumstances, which include her hospitalization with a terminal disease. There is even a brief mention of the parents that she left behind. Rather of dwelling on it for an excessive amount of time, it primarily uses it to lead up to the anticlimax of her objective in her new life, which is undercutting. Kanata is realized as something that resembles a genuine character rather than a cipher for the readers to engage with the gaming mechanics of the universe, which is still good because it all contributes just a little bit more flavor to the story.
When this occurs, it indicates that the reader is taken on a journey alongside Kanata and her zany and unique characteristics. The objective that Kanata chooses to pursue for her new life ultimately turns out to be an embodiment of the meme that asks, “Why can’t I kiss all the kitties?” She devotes herself wholeheartedly to the pursuit of the aim of being able to pet some fluffy pals. As a one-joke idea, it receives a respectable amount of laughter, which is more than the majority of isekai protags receive. And Kanata’s strategy for accomplishing her objective, as well as the manner in which it interacts with the assumptions that have been created for this universe, serves as the foundation of the continuous plot, as does the manner in which she engages with the other characters.
A significant portion of this is observable in the manner in which these components mechanically motivate the plot. The Beast Tamers are considered to be an undesirable class because they reduce the stats of their users in favor of relying on their tamed beasts that they have joined up with a partner. Consequently, it is a class that is significantly less difficult to complete the requirements for than higher-level professions such as Saint. Some of this works as a subversion of more typical isekai gimmicks, in the sense that Kanata did not purposefully chose an inferior class specifically because she knew how to twist it into a min/max power source, but rather because of the fact that it was the greatest route for her fairly simpleminded purposes.
The irony is that these priorities cause some of the mechanisms that are propelling those concepts to come into conflict with one another or to remain obscured by the sauce. Despite the fact that Beast Tamer is commonly considered to be a low-tier class for which anybody can satisfy the requirements, Kanata exerted a great deal of effort to develop her talents and capabilities in order to gain access to it. Kanata’s overpowering stats are also credited to this hard effort, despite the fact that it was previously proven that the isekai deity, who governs this world and is responsible for reincarnation, bestowed upon her the kinds of stat enhancements that are required by the genre. There are clues that the latter may have been the factor that made Kanata’s efforts so successful, and the fact that she was unaware of the exponential skills that resulted from her efforts is another layer of humor. However, this volume does not delve into it sufficiently for it to be considered a bit in a definitive sense.
The real growth of Passing Beast Tamer, on the other hand, can frequently feel quite as flighty as the protagonist of the game. It is common practice to use the term “free-spirited” when describing a person’s personality. Nevertheless, Kanata does a good job of embodying it, despite the fact that it causes her to move quickly through the narrative and drag the plot along with her. The intention is to have other characters interact with Kanata by misinterpreting her actions based on how things typically occur in this universe. This is done with the intention of creating a humorous situation. However, this frequently leads to walls of expositional text being thrown out, portions of which we would not have been able to access in any other way. There are times when Kanata happens to stumble onto explanations of monster encounters, the backstory of the Demon King, and the economics of the adventurer guild. These explanations are more for our benefit than anything else she interacts with, and they might give the impression of being disconnected.
Most of it is still effective when used as a joke. In particular, the relationship that Kanata has with Zaggy, her first tamed beast and a demon-king in the guise of a cute kitten, is a source of great amusement. Zaggy is determined to maintain his conviction that Kanata must be aware of what she is doing. But aside from the fact that Kanata is constantly gushing about how much she wants to pet cute kittens, there are a lot of other things that seem strange. These include the fact that the plots have not yet begun to unfold. There are times when we will have the opportunity to liven things up by engaging in battles against dragons or enormous birds. Kanata’s powerful and irreverent attitude to resolving things can be just as dizzying as the way the tale sprints into them, but at least that feels more calculated than the volume, which spends over twenty pages on Kanata’s principal attempting to convince her not to quit out of school or drop out of school altogether. There are also parts of the content that have the potential to cause whiplash, notably a graphically drawn aside that is strangely out of place and has guild receptionist Melissa explaining to Kanata that goblins have a tendency to engage in sexual assault that is graphically illustrated. If you are interested in checking out this one, you should be aware that there is a content warning for that.
As the game progresses, it is not that I would particularly like Passing Beast Tamer to slow down and become less intense. iidatoy’s artwork in this manga adaption does a good job at conveying the energy that I find to be quite intentional. I find this energy to be really appealing. It is particularly effectively shown on the page that Kanata herself takes a no-thoughts-head-empty attitude, which is a good thing because almost everything else is based on how one reacts to her. In spite of this, it would be good for this series to straighten out its tale more, to drive Kanata and her just effective motivation in a route that we can follow with some sense of consistency, rather than simply getting swept along by whatever the writer considers to be the dumbest at the moment. A fluffy newborn kitten is a good analogy for this situation because it is adorable and naturally charming, but it also has a tendency to stumble around and get lost in some situations.