Once upon a time, there were two Arata’s. One belonged to Earth, and the other belonged to some fantasy world.
Earth Arata is your typical pathetic kid: bullied and without friends. So in that sense, he hates his life. Fantasy world Arata, on the other hand, is in a precarious situation where he needs to disguise himself as a girl and attend a ceremony in order for his clan not to be killed off.
The said ceremony is supposed to be a formal transferring of the position between the old ruling princess and the new one, which is what Arata is supposed to be. It’s bound to fail, really, and Arata himself knows he’s just buying time.
But lo and behold, the 12 witnessing retainers of the princess decide to turn traitor, and one of them attacks the princess during the ceremony. As for Arata, he escapes, but the crime is pinned on him.
He escapes to this mysterious magical forest, that somehow ends up making the two Arata’s swap places…
For some reason, Earth Arata is in his school uniform yet everyone recognizes him as fantasy world Arata even with the glaring physical differences. Magic, I suppose.
Anyway, he’s brought back to their village by the attendant, where the grandma manages to figure out that there was been swapping of places going on. However, the people after Arata soon show up, and after one thing led to another, Arata ends up picking up a relic to protect himself from his attackers…
Soon, superpowers are unleashed…
And thus began Earth Arata’s life as fantasy world Arata.
Initially, this reminded me of Fushigi Yuugi with the Earthling sent to a fantasy world setting as a “princess” setting. And that kinda scared me, given that it would mean Arata will have 12 bishies serving him. It can’t get any more shounen-ai than that. But thankfully the plot quickly took an interesting turn with the 12’s revolution and making this Arata into a fugitive.
However, I’m finding it hard to see how the show will manage to tell the stories of both Arata’s at the same time. As far as this episode is concerned, it doesn’t seem like the Earth setting will get much developments, understandably since that front is boring. But it is kinda stupid for them to prepare an Earth plot if they’re not gonna develop it. So it’s either a failure to properly give focus to the Earth plot, or a failure of adding elements they’re not gonna care about later on.
But it does make for an interesting watch as far as the fantasy world is concerned. Maybe we should just totally ignore all the Earth bits.