Yes, that’s the title. It’s another Isekai with a huge title. I should note that the last anime season I went into, Spy X Family being hyped, I started watching a few and found I had a season with so many shows I was enjoying. So let’s get into this one.
Outside of being a Isekai, Trapped in a Dating Sim is rather hard to clarify which genera it belongs in since it’s got a mish mash of a bunch… in fact the lead points out the setting is all over the place in the first episode. But that’s getting a bit ahead of myself.
We are introduced to our lead being blackmailed to complete an Otome game by his sister. Very quickly he gets frustrated by the pacing issues and uses real money to buy a pay to win item (something as a gamer we are seeing quite often). After 100%ing and getting the best ending… he falls down the stairs and dies due to exhaustion having done it all in one go.
So, Leon Fou Bartfort wakes up now having memories of his past life… and soon finds to his horror that the world he’s in is that of that terrible otome game (basically dating game with the player character as a girl… should have said that from the start). Realizing his position in life is kind of messed up and doomed because of the way the government and privilege works… and the legal wife of his father is openly a horrible person trying to kill him for inheritance money, he sets out to pick up that cheat item he bought and use it to live a semi decent life…. oh, and that cheat item is a high-tech space ship complete with advanced AIs and robots… so kind of sticks out in this fantasy setting… don’t worry the show helps explain all that.
Anyway, with the first episode out of the way (yes that was all in the first episode), we get to the real meat of the show as Leon ends up at the same academy the game was set in. While he tries not to interfere (outside of using Luxion the AI of the ship AND BEST CHARACTER to make his life a little easier) with the game plot, he soon finds things are going differently as many of the major events in the game have had the games protagonist Olivia replaced by a short girl called Maria, who even repeats the events dialog mostly word for word as she seduces the prince and the other capture targets of the game.
This leaves both the protagonists and antagonist of the game Olivia and Angelica to become out lead female characters for the show and over time befriend Leon as events start to happen differently and faster than they did in the game.
I will say outside of Isekai the one other thing we can easily say this series is, is comedy. Not in the full comedy way of the likes of Spy X family, but it’s still very funny. Whether it be Leon out witting a bunch of privileged nobles that look down on him or the many humorous observations of the great Luxion.
The series adapts the story of the first 2 light novels (yes, most Isekai are based on light novels I went over this in my big article about Isekai) and I am aware of certain elements of the story the anime passes up much to my grumpiness. Still the show proved to be a surprisingly entertaining one, which given it’s yet another Isekai showed to me that the Isekai popularity isn’t slowing down any time soon.
The show has both a sub and dub up so you can take your pick on which you want to watch and enjoy.