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Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken – 02, 03 »

Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken – 01

OP Sequence

OP: 「Nameless Story」by Takuma Terashima


“The Storm Dragon, Verudora”


「暴風竜ヴェルドラ」 (Boufuu Ryuu Veldra)

Breaking the Mould

What impressed me about Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken (Tensura) the most was how it was willing to go beyond norms inherent to the isekai premise, coming up with original ideas that are extremely refreshing in a genre where the fail-safe tropes have been done to death.

Right off the bat, there’s something different about our main character compared with other isekai protagonists. At least from my perspective. While he didn’t lead the most extraordinary of existences, the main character seems well-adjusted in his social interaction with others, and seemed to have a largely enjoyable life. To put it simply, he wasn’t desperately looking for a second chance at life, like many other isekai protagonists typically would. Though I do suppose he was quite disgruntled about being a virgin – who wouldn’t be at his age? But I think the most revolutionary difference had to be the way his death played out. For once, an isekai protagonist doesn’t get done in by a wayward truck. Instead, he gets assailed by a random murder-hobo, who helps put an end to 7 years of wizardry. Wizardry being synonymous with virginity at any age past 30. Still, it was a remarkable way of going out, and my spidey senses told me that God decided to give our protagonist a second chance for being so selfless. At least that’s how it works in most isekai series.

Before our protagonist’s soul ventured into the ‘beyond’, he already saw flickers of a peculiar UI in his mind, telling him the kind of skills he was acquiring as he lay there dying. It clearly indicates that this is the moment where our magical journey begins, while he’s still alive in our world. Usually these things come after death, before the gates of heaven, and not beforehand. So you get the feeling he’s going to become something special. Only the title spoils it all… he’s reincarnated as a slime! But he definitely isn’t alone there is one thing that stands out in comparison with other isekai works. I have to draw attention to Tensura’s implementation of the RPG-esque user interface. The aesthetics are nothing short of exquisite. The animation was so pristine, fluid and crisp, conveying a sense of life, as if said system possesses sentience. Which it does! It actually turns out to be the unassuming source of our protagonist’s power in the new world, documenting his growth while acting as a portable encyclopaedia that can explain anything about the world which the protagonist asks. He uses newfound knowledge to his advantage, stocking up on healing elixirs and magicite ores. No doubt, those will come in handy at a later date.

Extending upon the idea that dragons are intimidating and prideful, Tensura completely japanifies its dragon into a kawaii tsundere. God damn it Japan. So bad yet so good and it still had me in stitches of laughter. My only qualm was that the slime had to explain the joke – it was unquestionably better without one! As can be seen, these things are how Tensura seeks to stamp its foot down in a firm declaration that it shall deviate from isekai norms and utterly defy our expectations.

Concluding Thoughts

Tensura brings many new ideas to the table, ones full of spontaneous creativity and fun, without being grounded in any of the typical wish-fulfilment you see from isekai works. What comes next could be anyone’s guess. That said, I feel incredibly optimistic about how this adaptation is going to turn out, and at worst it will turn out to be a consistent piece of weekly entertainment. That much I know, since I’ve already read some of the novel 1-2 years ago, meaning I dived in knowing full well what to expect. Or at least I thought I did. Perhaps I encountered shoddy translation work, given how prevalent machine translation is within the business, or maybe I’d given the allegedly inferior web novel a gander. But the anime exceeded my experience of the written medium, which was a pleasant surprise to say the least!

Anyway, it’s too early to say whether Tensura will punch above its weight class – my expectations are above average and I won’t be setting the bar very high. However, I would like to do a sales pitch to people reading this post who are undecided about whether or not they want to give this series a shot. If you’re a fan of the isekai genre, RPG-esque world-building AND comedic narration, then Tensura is a no-brainer. Based off the OP theme, there should be ample amounts of action too, and what we’ve been teased with looks very slick. So there’s oodles of potential in that particular aspect. And here’s the biggest thing. Even if you dislike the isekai genre, I’d highly advise giving Tensura a shot – it strays away from many stale conventions to the point where you might find that it coheres with your tastes! To conclude, I hope that you give Tensura a shot because it’s a fun and innovative work within the isekai genre that deserves some fresh consideration!

October 4, 2018 at 10:01 am
39 comments »
  • October 4, 2018 at 10:22 ammac65

    All of the pictures are tiny!!!

    I thought I heard, and I could be wrong, that he can change shapes, mimic things
    and other “creatures”. So there’s some interesting possibilities there as far as
    the viewers not always watching a slime DO things. Also, the kawaii tsundere dragon’s
    gotta add some great comedic opportunities.

    I think, all in all, this will be a fun series to watch w/o getting anywhere serious
    with some plot angles / tropes that we haven’t seen.

    BTW, what the hell was on his PC that he was so worried about :).

    • October 4, 2018 at 10:23 ammac65

      *picture links in the article

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:06 pmZaiden

      Thanks for noticing. Fixed! And to be completely honest, I’m sure many people relate with that predicament. If I died I couldn’t care less about what I had on my PC. But some people have skeletons in their closet that need burying.

      • October 4, 2018 at 4:41 pmsetlzermx

        Tossing it into the tub ain’t enough! Drill holes, microwave it, then flush it down the toilet.

  • October 4, 2018 at 10:47 amPurpleBomber

    I was terrified for the premiere given how low-end isekai adaptations can be… but that was pretty good actually! Always feels good when a series you like gets the quality of anime it deserves.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:11 pmZaiden

      That’s what I thought. Then some comments seem to suggest that they’re cramming 5 volumes worth of content into 12 episodes 0.0

      Though I want to say I personally didn’t think Knights & Magic was a bad adaptation, one that 8bit handled quite well.

      • October 4, 2018 at 5:13 pmMick

        It 24 episode btw

  • October 4, 2018 at 11:08 amRathje

    I’ve followed the manga, and if this show has good animation, it should be fairly watchable.

    If they skimp on the animation budget, I don’t think it’s going to be worth it for me.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:12 pmZaiden

      It doesn’t have KyoAni/Ufotable levels of animation. But it’s a cut above the usual, and fairly pleasing to the eyes.

      • October 5, 2018 at 11:22 amWorldwidedepp

        The Truth will come around 3-4 Episode.. The Starting Episodes have the most Cash to Burn

  • October 4, 2018 at 11:17 amHalfDemonInuyasha

    When the episode started with that WWII setting, I thought I was watching the wrong anime at first, lol.

    • October 4, 2018 at 1:18 pmKinai

      That’s a spoiler in a sense.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:13 pmZaiden

      When I read parts of the WN/LN, I never got to that point. So I have no idea what that was about, and look forwards to seeing how it relates to the story. If I had to guess, the special summon girl who was enslaved by the mages to defeat Verdora will be the one whisked away in the flames.

  • October 4, 2018 at 11:45 amFede 5000

    The first minutes are exactly the same from every other isekai, and once mc gets into his new world, the rest of the episode is taken up with tedious explanations and a steady stream of unearned level-ups. It feels like the fundamental promise of the modern isekai genre is “watch someone else talk about how good they’d be at videogames if they had all the cheat codes turned on”, and this episode’s narrative stays true to that promise in every way, from the effortless way MC gains every skill to the gleeful acknowledgments that this isn’t a convincing fantasy world, it’s just a videogame. If not for that dragon character acting, the second half of this episode would be an interminable slog. it’s basically just the dragon and some unknown authorial voice answering questions as Satoru rifles through the user manual, clarifying how the different skills in this videogame work.This glut of dramatically meaningless exposition is just a terrible way to hook audiences in general. Slime strong aesthetics mean it may ultimately rise to the top of the seasonal isekai heap, but this episode only gave a negative impression of its actual storytelling, and such a failure of form right out the gate implies pretty dubious things about its narrative going forward. The isekai genre has essentially collapsed in on itself at this point, promising one extremely specific fantasy of competency in one extremely specific videogame world. Some shows strike at that goal better than others, but I’d rather the animes be stories not Let’s Plays.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:16 pmZaiden

      There’s no denying that many isekai shows play out like a glorified display of video game with cheat codes enabled. However, you have to remember that there’s a significant overlap between people who are interested in Japanese subculture and people who are gamers, especially in Japan (which is the primary market for most of these things). So it makes sense they want to make the best of both worlds, literally and figuratively speaking, by going about things in accordance with what the majority of their demographic want.

      • October 5, 2018 at 11:06 pmSDFGS

        There’s honestly no point into replying someone who can’t even write their own comment. Just let them be their ENG 101 + PSY 101 spouting selves and ignore them.

    • October 4, 2018 at 5:37 pmstardf29

      It’s one thing to criticize this show but you basically just copied Nick Creamer’s with a few words changed around.

      In other words, this is just straight up plagiarism.

  • October 4, 2018 at 11:59 amSlarkero

    I really liked the first episode, as a manga reader I hope they maintain that quality.
    P.D.: Damn the OP show all the way to Vol 5.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:18 pmZaiden

      Here’s hoping, but my optimism took a blow after seeing that they’re trying to cram in at least 5 volumes worth of content.

  • October 4, 2018 at 12:01 pmWanderer

    The picture links in the article all seem to link to the thumbnail versions rather than the full-sized versions.

    I expect to enjoy this, although how much time they choose to spend on which parts will be critical.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:20 pmZaiden

      Fixed! And that’s what 8bit need to do really. Preferably, every arc gets the love it deserves. But if they have a limited amount of episode to tell 5 volumes worth of story, they have to figure out which arcs are worth spending time on in order to reach their designated endgame.

  • October 4, 2018 at 12:13 pmOne Pinch Man

    The last time we got an isekai anime with production value this good was Re:Zero.

    https://randomc.net/image/Tensei%20shitara%20Slime%20Datta%20Ken/Tensei%20shitara%20Slime%20Datta%20Ken%20-%2001%20-%2017.jpg
    I like how Rimuru expresses himself using his whole body as replacement for usual “manga effects”.

    • October 4, 2018 at 4:21 pmZaiden

      Me too :3

      I think we’ll be getting less of that later on, though I could be wrong.

      • October 8, 2018 at 5:08 pmNaweG

        Ep 02 has not dropped off nearly as much as some other series, so there is hope they budgeted wisely…

  • October 4, 2018 at 1:10 pmDude

    I follow the manga and I’m worried about this adaptation since it seems to want to blaze through many chapters.

    • October 4, 2018 at 2:22 pmLyfe

      The Light novels are way ahead of the manga aren’t they? I’d imagine this is what they care about with the adaptation. There’s 13 LN volumes out at the moment, so they have plenty to cover over 24 episodes.

  • October 4, 2018 at 1:36 pmMistic

    As someone who read the manga, I must admit I’m also surprised by the quality of the art and the presentation. Very positive start.

    That said, this is pure power-fantasy Isekai. Sure, the protagonist is different from usual (grown man with a decent life, no truck-kun or summoning, becoming a slime), and there’s good humor and lampshade hanging from time to time (the co-worker fulfilling the protagonist’s last wish was endearingly hilarious XD). However, that shouldn’t distract from the cold harsh truth: this is yet another fantasy world that has RPG mechanics just because, and the protagonist is magically given more and more broken powers as the plot demands.

    Still, funny, endearing and pretty.

  • October 4, 2018 at 5:29 pmLyfe

    @Mick

    Yup, not sure where he got 12 episodes from. From what I’ve read also the studio is adapting this straight from the Light novels and not the manga. So how far manga readers have got is largely irrelevant as the LN is the primary platform for the series.

    • October 4, 2018 at 6:14 pmMick

      Actually Manga is the upgrade version of light novel. There a part that author revise it to made story flow better

      I think Anime will be a bit different as well but still stay true to the story

      • October 4, 2018 at 6:23 pmLyfe

        If you haven’t read the light novels you can’t really say the manga is an upgrade. The light novels are what the anime is being made to sell in Japan, and is arguably more popular. They did the same with Re:Zero, which had an anime adaptation to sell the light novels and when it concluded they simply told viewers to read the books to see what happens next!

    • October 4, 2018 at 10:44 pmMick

      Oh I did read all version
      That why I can confirm the revise part
      But this does not affect main story so don’t worry
      It just made story flow better without cutting anything

  • October 4, 2018 at 5:40 pmzztop

    Slime Tensei was among the first isekai WNs to introduce the concept of being reborn as a non-human creature. (In fact, it’s like most anime adapted isekai have been the firsts of their subset genres, like Re Zero’s dark deconstruction or Shokudou’s SOL/food appreciation.)
    The source WN still commands 3rd place on Syosetu’s popularity rankings, despite the last major update being in 2015-2016. The LNs are still adapting the WN content IIRC.

    • October 4, 2018 at 7:31 pmOne Pinch Man

      And from this moment, Tensura will popularize other reincarnation isekai subgenre in the future. On the positive side, we will get adaptations from good source like spider and sword reincarnation. On the negative side, we will get shitty adaptations like vending machine and onsen reincarnation.

      • October 4, 2018 at 10:44 pmzztop

        The spider reincarnation one is incoming, I hear.
        The vending machine one’s weird, although I hear some people like how weirdly creative it is.
        Although, I’d like to see an anime of the isekai with the reincarnated diplomat werewolf; Jinrou Tensei/The Annals of Veight.

      • October 10, 2018 at 8:08 amprimavera

        Dude, ‘I Was Reincarnated as a Hot Spring in an Alternate World’ is simply hilarious. The best ecchi isekai that I’ve read and will see, because it is inevitable to be made into anime. Seriously, it’s just one big hentai meta joke.

  • October 5, 2018 at 6:58 amstarss

    “Let’s create an entire OP featuring all the great, colorful characters that audience will watch every week….. and put it at the END of the pilot episode where we only feature ONE of those characters!”

    Great idea.

  • October 5, 2018 at 9:15 amArsene

    Very impressed with the animation quality, esp. after Overlord III. Slime Tenshi isn’t the best Isekai out there, but it’s close, and one of the precious few good ones. Really glad to see it get the adaptation it deserves (and 24 episodes? Fantastic).

    Best Isekai is, of course, 12 Kingdoms. Shame the novel series never finished.

    • October 5, 2018 at 12:07 pmLyfe

      Yup, it was announced as 24 episodes by 8-Bit before it began airing. It looks like it’ll be airing for 24 straight weeks rather than taking a break for a season(Such as what 8-Bit did with Rewrite).

  • October 5, 2018 at 12:18 pmBROOKLYN otaku

    “Random murder hobo” AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHAAAAAAA!! aaaaaaah…..im dead.

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