When Goblin Slayer first emerged as a new series in 2018, it shook the world of anime with controversy. The premiere episode, which featured brutal bloodshed, deliberate narrative subversion, and, most notably, a nasty interspecies rape scene, was more than some viewers could handle. Though the remainder of season one wasn’t always as grimdark as the series premiere, it did retain as much stark realism and awful consequences as one can expect in a fantasy series based closely around Dungeons and Dragons.
As the gods continue to roll the dice in the series, Goblin Slayer: Goblin’s Crown has emerged on Crunchyroll. A new movie that follows the events of the first season, Goblin’s Crown picks up where the story last left off, with the team of adventurers taking on a new mission from the quest board. The mission in question sees the quintuplet tasked with seeking out a royally connected adventurer who disappeared while on a goblin slaying mission for a local village.
As the titular Goblin Slayer, Priestess, and the others set out into the snowy wilderness in search of the goblins who took the girl, they make a series of increasingly unsettling discoveries about the creatures they’re tracking. As seen during the first season, the goblins are continuing to evolve both their base of knowledge and their technological abilities, becoming more of a threat than ever to the human race. Now, equipped with a paladin, the goblins are carving magical runes for some unknown purpose, while they stock supplies and tie up villagers, rather than killing them.
Of course, the ever-stoic Goblin Slayer is unmoved by these developments. His mission remains the same: to kill every last goblin. Even as he begins to soften to the group, his resolve remains stalwart, and he remains passively ignorant of Priestess’ love for him, a fact which is finally confirmed here (as if there was ever any doubt).
Goblin Slayer: Goblin’s Crown also continues the trend of leaning heavily into fantasy tropes for which the series is known. As elves and dwarves grow their unlikely friendship and there is talk of dragons and the spirit of adventuring, fans of the series will find plenty of fantasy nostalgia to enjoy here. However, the movie may be a bit too similar to the series to make a significant mark on fans.
Though no one wants to see the series repeat itself necessarily, the high stakes of Goblin Slayer‘s two best all-or-nothing battles are a hard benchmark to beat, particularly the series’ finale fight with the Goblin Champion. As such, Goblin’s Crown fails to up the ante enough to match the series at its best. While it maintains the strengths that made Goblin Slayer such a hit to begin with, it doesn’t reach the series at its heights.
Further, the only significant new character seems to be a one and done addition, meaning that fans who skip Goblin’s Crown likely won’t be missing much. However, for those who are eagerly awaiting the second season of Goblin Slayer, Goblin’s Crown is a nice bit of dessert to pacify fans for the remainder of time before season two finally arrives.
Complete with a series recap at the front end, fans could do a lot worse than Goblin Slayer: Goblin’s Crown, but for those seeking the jaw-clenching suspense and top-tier ass-kicking of the main series, Goblin’s Crown is only an appetizer for the main course.