Thirty-seven-year-old Satoru Mikami is a typical corporate worker, who is perfectly content with his monotonous lifestyle in Tokyo, other than failing to nail down a girlfriend even once throughout his life. In the midst of a casual encounter with his colleague, he falls victim to a random assailant on the streets and is stabbed. However, while succumbing to his injuries, a peculiar voice echoes in his mind, and recites a bunch of commands which the dying man cannot make sense of.
When Satoru regains consciousness, he discovers that he has reincarnated as a goop of slime in an unfamiliar realm. In doing so, he acquires newfound skills—notably, the power to devour anything and mimic its appearance and abilities. He then stumbles upon the sealed Catastrophe-level monster "Storm Dragon" Verudora who had been sealed away for the past 300 years for devastating a town to ashes. Sympathetic to his predicament, Satoru befriends him, promising to assist in destroying the seal. In return, Verudora bestows upon him the name Rimuru Tempest to grant him divine protection.
Now, liberated from the mundanities of his past life, Rimuru embarks on a fresh journey with a distinct goal in mind. As he grows accustomed to his new physique, his gooey antics ripple throughout the world, gradually altering his fate.
Insert obligatory pretentious quote here because I’m not good at starting a review. The Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime or TenSuru is an anime that slipped into the radar of ever hungry anime watchers in October 2018. Since then, the anime has been praised as being a wholesome isekai deviating from the norm and positing a new and refreshed take on the genre. So, imagine my confoundment when only the first 5-6 episodes held true to the preceding sentence. After the first 6 episodes it turns into your typical harem loli bait. Allow me to elaborate.
The anime starts off pretty good actually with
our protagonist (who is a not-so-social-virgin at 37) dying, with his dying wish being “If I ever get reborn, I want to be OP af and want to screw as many girls as I like”; to be fair, I would probably also wish something along those lines. After citing his wish, “the great sage” reincarnates him into another world as the most OP slime ever. Stuff happens and he ends up saving a tsundere dragon from eternal imprisonment by eating him and also saves a village of goblins from direwolves. He, then names all the goblins and direwolves and takes it upon himself to create an ideal living environment for the monsters to live in. Just because he worked as a “contractor” in his previous life, he’s able to plan out a whole city mostly by himself. He also becomes an expert in holding a conversation even though he was lonely and awkward in his previous life. I don’t know how that works, but good for him right?
After planning a whole city mostly by himself, begins the directionless adventure of the slime. This is one of the main problems with this show, it does not know what it wants to be. There’s no overarching narrative, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but audiences at least need a sense of direction of movement in order not to be bored. There was something about there being a demon lord or something, idk it’s probably the same guy that’s present in every other isekai. What the show does is, it makes one of the characters say “Demon Lord” in some way or the other and the anime is like “well that’s enough plot progression for one episode. Who wants tiddies?”. Instead of actual plot we get “plot”. Not “plot” plot, but PLOT. Every girl the slime ever comes across is infatuated with him because we need to construct a harem or it will not be an isekai. Thus, the slime turns into chad slime and is swimming in tiddies, literally. The second problem with the show is that the danger does not feel real. Since the slime, who gets the name Rimuru by the way, is as OP as Goku in his Rainbow Super Saiyan Ultra Instinct Super Saiyan Legendary Super Saiyan God Ultra BS Level 5 form, nobody stands a chance against him. Anyone who challenges him, gets their ass handed to them in about 5 milliseconds. The fights usually go like this:
1. Rimuru’s henchmen fighting evil guy.
2. Evil Guy: You are just cannon fodder.
3. Henchmen lose; evil guy laughs; Rimuru arrives.
4. Evil Guy: You’re just a slime, you can’t do anything.
5. Rimuru beats the shit out of evil guy.
6. Evil Guy: *gasp* *starts following Rimuru for no reason*
Seriously, everyone who ever comes in contact with Rimuru becomes as loyal to him as you’re to anime. There’s this direwolf whose father is killed by Rimuru, but he’s like “meh, shit happens. You killed my father and dozens of my friends with whom I’ve spent my life till now, but you gave me a name so I instantly forgot about them”.
The comedy is ehhh??? I know comedy is subjective, but I can distinguish between well written comedy that isn’t funny just to me and just plain bad comedy. There’s this character who doesn’t speak and just says “mmmhh” and whenever he does that Rimuru goes “Speak up, man”. It was funny the first time but became annoying after it was repeated for a million times. There’s this lizardman who’s arguably the most irksome character in the show because his only purpose in life seems to be to make stupid decisions for the sake of tasteless humour. But, the most annoying part is that those actions, those asinine actions that he takes in the show which we took for granted, actually contribute to plot progression. He overthrows his father, the king of the lizardmen, from the throne during an invasion just because 3 of his henchmen told him that he is strong *annoyed nose exhale*.
The characters are painfully mediocre. Except for one female character, all others are there just to show some cleavage and get wet over Rimuru for no goddamn reason. Rimuru himself isn’t that interesting of a character. We never get an explanation to his motivation or what he wants to do, he just does whatever is presented to him. That’s weak writing. If your character holds his/her characterisation only in the context of the story then that’s weak character writing. There’s not even much to write as the characters are the definition of average. If they were on either end of the spectrum you would have something to say about them, but the characters in this show don’t have much of a personality. Only one character gets anything resembling a backstory which was so cursory that I forgot about it as soon as it happened. The characters are introduced as some kind of badasses only to further paint them as only superficially badass. There’s a character who tames the orcs and has a calm demeanour in his first scene but loses his mind when his plan fails. He’s portrayed as smart and shrewd but isn’t even able to figure out that his own slave is going to kill him.
The female cast consists of useless fanservice character #1, useless fanservice character #2, useless fanservice character #3 up to useless fanservice character #10, and Shizue. You can literally replace the female cast with boobs and it wouldn’t make a dent of a difference. Every female in this show, in one way or another, is only present to hold Rimuru between her boobs or to get angry for absolutely no reason in order to provide “comic relief”. I’ve put comic relief if massive quotations because all it does is annoy the viewer or pad for time as every episode needs to be 20 minutes long. The “comic relief” usually (and by usually I mean all the time) consists of girls vying to get wet over Rimuru or having other characters eat food that they’ve prepared; usually (and by usually I mean all the time) the food is very unpalatable and causes the person eating said food to faint. As you can see these are entirely new concepts that have never been executed or seen before in any anime, ever.
There’s a demon loli who runs around in bikinis blowing up whatever she wishes and is supposed to be a “demon lord” who are apparently the most OP people in the world. The demon loli is defeated by Rimuru by stuffing her mouth with honey; a feat which is applauded by his loyal followers quoting it as “A feat which only Rimuru-sama can accomplish” *exasperated sigh*. The demon loli (that’s what I’m gonna call her because she was only present in the show to appeal to pedos and was such a superfluous character that I don’t even remember her name and can’t be bothered to search for it), becomes besties with Rimuru because, well, we need an excuse to shoehorn in a loli with enough helium in her voice to lead to dizziness, nausea, vomiting, loss of consciousness and ultimately death.
You might be thinking that despite shitting on this show why have I still given it a 4/10. Well, that’s because even though everything about this anime is utterly mediocre, I still had an urge to click the next episode and ended up finishing it in a day so it gets some points there. Even though the fights themselves can’t be considered anything other than one sided massacre, they were still fun to watch.
Oh, almost forgot. The music is ok, the OPs and EDs are just fine and with the exception of one piece (which I just can’t seem to be able to find), all the others are forgettable. The animation is pretty solid though, especially during the fights. But, what good is animation when the majority of the show is as bland and tasteless as frozen dry fruits.
If isekai is your thing, then go for it, but again if you really like isekai then you’ve probably already watched it. If you don’t like isekai and are going to try it because you’ve heard so many good things about it, then I’d recommend you to refrain from watching it. This is another one of those mediocre isekai that has been hyped to high heavens by the anime community. It’s literally like any other isekai.
That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime has one huge issue preventing it from being the fun wholesome D&D comedy it wants to be. There are no stakes. Nothing matters all because the main character is insanely overpowered. Rinmuru was a 37-year-old-virgin office worker randomly killed and then reborn in a new world as a blue slime in a JRPG-like fantasy world, a seemingly original spin on the generic isekai. Like most isekai power-fantasies, he is immediately overpowered. Anything he encounters in the world can be effortlessly defeated, draining any tension out of the show.
The premise isn’t inherently flawed, especially because it
aims for a more comedic and light-hearted tone in a genre full of overly-serious edgefests. The animation in the first episode was amazing, background art was highly detailed and consistent. The art quickly went from great to just decent, however it never lost its colorful style. From its first few episodes, I found that it had an infectious fun cartoony feel. It balanced this light-hearted tone with some drama sprinkled throughout. The stakes were always low, at first, the lack of stakes was compensated for with all of the side characters who had their own drama. But no one is ever developed, it is just filler. Even the for with zany comedy grows stale the longer the series progresses, the jokes never evolve, it’s the same dumb jokes repeated over and over.
A relaxed plot structure isn’t inherently bad. This series just does nothing with any part of its story. But it tries to have its cake and eat it too. You can’t have a zany bit comedy with characters who fulfill roles in a comedy, then try to use them for emotional payoffs and build tension. It had the childish silly comedy, it had the occasional drama. SEPARATELY. Then it lost track of its plot threads, there was no direction, inevitably the tone became so mismatched that it was no longer enjoyable.
Everyone in Tensei Slime is so far below the main character in every way that they are glossed over, cannon fodder and fools to entertain him. He never needs any of them. By the midpoint in the show, the most important supporting character is Shion, because she is constantly on screen being jiggled by Slime loli hiding under her boobs. Aside from that the side characters don’t have enough personality, development, or even relevant dialogue. Most of them just linger around Rinmaru like his giant harem, showering him with praise and the occasional quip as if they were NPCs
In truth, there is only one character the show cares about. Slime loli.
Our slime isekai protagonist Rinmuru is mildly entertaining before he becomes a loli, after that you realize you've been baited. You thought this would be an original take on the isekai genre? Wholesome? Guess again. He’s just the average thirty-something-year-old isekai protagonist but he looks like a loli. Rinmaru’s loli form with his bland background, and his annoying habit of draining any tension make him an awful main character. And I'm not against the surprising amount of violence this show used. What bothers me about the violence is that it tends to clash horribly with the wholesome tone of the irreverent Rinmuru and his band of misfit goofballs. The tone is a disaster for most of the show, many times it is difficult to tell how the series wants you to watch it. It may want you to take it seriously then laugh at it all in one scene, and the result is just confusion and boredom.
Any character who offered intriguing subplots to digress from Rinmaru is forgotten by the writer almost immediately after their introduction. Make no mistake, they all stick around the main character, but they become ornaments rather than characters. For various reasons, anyone Rinmuru defeats decides to pledge their loyalty to him. Non-player-characters, just members of his party with the sole purpose to compliment him and be his battle fodder until he decides to one-punches the enemy into oblivion. There is one other character who exceeds him in power, but she comes so far late in the series and she does nothing. Imagine an immovable object meets an unstoppable force. Instead of building off of one another she does nothing and acts like an idiot, then gets ordered by Rinmuru.
From time to time the dialogue doesn’t take itself seriously at all, and it’s the show’s best, but also worst feature. The only thing that made it watchable, that kept me awake for all twenty-five episodes was the occasional moronic, sarcastic quip. If a funny line is tossed randomly into a bad scene or if it’s sandwiched between bland dialogue it goes so far in giving the show more energy. When Rinmaru quips at a weaker enemy for being stupider than him, it's fun. Conversely, there is some palpable tension when a conflict has been developed for episodes and Rinmaru’s underlings work to succed. However, he always steps in with an annoyed expression, taunts his enemy with an awkward joke, then easily defeats it. Who would want a main character like this? Before a fight Rinmaru often says "this fight won't be easy" BUT IT IS ALWAYS EASY. He is too ludicrously overpowered for what this show is trying to be. Like a vacuum, he drains away all of the tension. Without tension in a fantasy-action anime, there is little left to enjoy.
Another major problem with the broken story structure of this show is the pacing. The author has so little attention span that there can never be more than one plotline occurring at once. No time for character development. No time for world building. We have a conflict and we’ll have to see it all the way to its boring unsatisfying conclusion before the next plotline can even be introduced. I never thought I would actually miss Overlord, but at least that show made an effort to tell a competent story. Also, every arc in Tensei Shit but one ends incredibly anticlimactically. Even the arcs that end on flashy action set pieces are still unsatisfying because the main character is so overpowered nothing poses a threat to him. Dozens of potential plot threads are cut off and left open to potentially be revisited in the future. And this is not a writing technique the author is intentionally using. Rather, it is more of a ‘Plan B’ in case the main plotline becomes too boring and repetitive.
The final arc in the show comes out of nowhere. The new characters, a group of kids, have no personalities other than one trait if we're lucky. Hollow, boring characters are par for the course in Slime Shit, but this is where the show went from boring to painful. It tries to make us care about the new NPC kids. We were told by the show that they are going to die if Rinmaru doesn’t help. Thankfully he doesn’t care about anything so he ditches his small civilization temporarily to help them. He resolves the conflict by himself, totally separately of the kids, and they end up just following him around trying to act important like the rest of the supporting cast in this terrible hackneyed series. After the anticlimactic finale, there is nothing left worth caring about. But of course they teased a second season.
I can’t wait for another 25-episodes of this drivel...
[Story: 3/10] Disjointed, shallow, forgettable, cliche.
[Character: 1/10] There is only one character who matters, and I hate him.
[Art: 6/10] Attention grabbing character designs, decent art, good animation.
[Sound: 5/10] Forgettable soundtrack that doesn't always fit the scene, good first op and ed.
[Enjoyment: 4/10] Boring aside from some banter between the characters, but it is repetitive and basic.
[Final Score: 3/10]
Overpowered main characters are a staple of the isekai genre, and That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime is no different. Studio 8bit's stellar art style and the first two theme songs were fantastic. However, the production was not enough to carry such a disjointed and underwhelming story. If you're a fan of the isekai genre then you might enjoy the irreverent humor for a little while. Until that too gets devoured by the slime-loli-thirty-seven-year-old-virgin and then all you're left with is a long boring waste of time.
I use to ponder how isekai is an unusual phenomenon, seeing how it's rather so popular and draws so many people in with its stories. But the more you watch, you start to see that it really isn’t—it’s quite understandable, really. The fandom of light novels tends, more than most, to be fond of wish-fulfillment and self-insert type stories. And of course, isekai is the ultimate platform for that. Maybe there was a time, before it became almost unimaginably overused and tired, that the word “isekai” didn’t immediately elicit a groan—but that time has long since passed. The genre is overplayed and overdone, and almost
nothing that slaps a ridiculously long title on itself and surfs the wave is any good.
The standard for isekai anime continues to take a dive with each passing season, reaching new depths, with its played tropes from harem antics, its ridiculously overpowered protagonists and how it uses cheap plot devices, usually around the topics of rape and slavery to shock its audiences and pull them into something they think will be dark and mature—only for the show to turn into the same old generic, edgelord power fantasy. Is Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken (That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime in English and TenSura for short) any different? While TenSura follows every cliché trope to ever exist but executes them in such a way that it remains narratively engaging as we follow the progress of the main protagonist of this story who is Mikami Satoru, who at a later time, goes by the name of Rimuru Tempest, as he literally builds a technocrat federation from nothing after being reborn in a different world.
The whole premise—a 37-year-old virgin NEET gets heroically stabbed to death after finally venturing outside and winds up reincarnated as a slime with superpowers in an alternate universe, which seems about as arbitrary as it gets. Slimes are recognized as one of the weakest creatures, but after meeting a Catastrophe-level monster "Storm Dragon" Verudora, who he later merged with and was named by him—as Rimuru Tempest—and gaining some unique skills, he sets off on an adventure to travel this world and make the best of a second chance at life. The unique skill “Predator” allowed him to devour Verudora and gain some of his abilities and the “Great Sage” is like another consciousness that exists inside Rimuru, it has this clinical female voice, marked by kanji descriptions and psychedelic shifting colors, punctuates his internal monologue and pretty much acts as a guide for him. It has all sorts of abilities that make our Slime hero almost that of a demigod.
While the idea of a superpowered slime is definitely among the sillier concepts to build a story on, there's no doubt that the creator Fuse has done his work building this story's world, and it shows in 8-bit’s adaption here. It's a combination of RPG trappings from both east and west, with elves, dwarves, slimes, ogres, goblins, kobolds, etc., that still plays into the basic isekai notion that people are going to be summoned or reborn from our world. In fact, it's specifically stated that people are both reborn and summoned, with the summoned being more valuable because of the great difficulties associated with surviving the magic. This is where the story’s main subplot comes in—Rimuru's story is juxtaposed with that of Shizue Izawa, a little girl who barely survives a firebombing during WWII and ends up being summoned by a particularly unpleasant demon lord. Shizue's story is undeniably tragic, and her fate makes a decided contrast to his. Shizue's tale shows the darker side of the summoning process that we don't often see in novels like these. The two narratives do connect in a way that gives Shizue's story some closure, as well as opening the door for the next stage in Rimuru's evolution.
Rimuru is the type of character that very much stays true to how he was in his previous life and using his experience with MMO’s, RPG’s, otaku culture, and his occupation to help him solve the situations he finds himself in. He tries to avoid conflict, tries his best to avoid killing others, and helps to make peace between others when need be. Due to his nature, he solved a conflict between Goblins and Dire wolves which led them to all come together and build a village where everyone is accepted. Our main character was to become this village’s leader and he would name each one that resides here. As for the supporting characters, there is something for everyone. You have all ‘dere’ types and ones with the ‘badassery’ stamp of approval. There is a large number of supporting characters who are more than cardboard cutouts and are constantly contributing, they have personalities and have moments of introspection. When it comes down to the overall narrative, TenSura is about family, friendships, and bonds that Rimuru makes with other beings that he encounters on his journey in this magical world. He understands that every race is different, they have their own culture, their own ways of doing things, but he becomes a bridge to everyone that anyone can peacefully live together. Through these interactions, a small tribe becomes a village, then a town, then a city, then a nation and finally a federation.
The worldbuilding in TenSura deserves praise. Much later into the show, you can see how much that Rimuru and his people have built in this world, all the other nations and kingdoms he has traveled too, all the allies he has made and some potential foes. Each nation is unique in how they operate, the laws, politics, location etc., there are even rumors, folklore and gossip happening around in these places that make you feel immersed in this world. However, there were things that bothered me that need to be mentioned. First thing is that the beginning of the show, while very informal, is tough and slow. Its filled with exposition and it feels like you’re constantly getting smacked in the face with it, it takes a while for the show to start rolling and felt it dwelt too long on all the info-dumps (mostly explaining the same things over and over). The other issue was Rimuru being too much of a sue character and being ridiculously overpowered. A lot of the show’s comedy helps with making it a bit tolerable but once you get past the shows first cour, all tension starts to evaporate because all of his battles end in a stomp match or are easily resolved by his natural ability to sway one’s heart. All his struggles and confrontations are easily and quickly resolved.
For the most part, 8-bit did a good job with the visuals and they are a good match for the narrative. The art style tends to go for a bright and colorful look during the more light-hearted scenes, with the dramatic moments taking on a darker and less cartoonish palette. For an isekai like TenSura, I’d say the monster designs are done really well, especially the physical evolution of some of the characters after receiving a name or leveling up. Also, worth noting is the way the visual direction depicts Rimuru getting used both his forms. The show is visually at its best during the big battle scenes. There are few episodes that ‘drop’ in terms of quality, a few that unfortunately had the cringe-worthy CG but it remained relatively consistent. Overall character designs are done well, although, the fanservice did get a bit too much where I found myself rolling my eyes. I felt the score could have been better but it does stay true to the RPG-like aspect of things, VA’s all did good jobs in fitting to their given characters' personality.
Overall, TenSura is rather one of the better isekai in its catalog with great worldbuilding, accomplishes what it sets out to achieve and for the most part, is actually fun. Yes, there are flaws and tired tropes, which is to be expected in isekai but it avoids all the nonsense that we commonly see in these types of anime—there is no edgelord protagonist who is the chosen one, with a bland personality and surrounded by a harem of little girls. Rather focusing a lot of the fighting aspect, TenSura’s story is told in a competent way that explores the relationships between people, what people could have with each other, and ultimately have them fight for what they believe for. It introduces the idea that people can connect with each other, build bridges and mend borders simply through conversation, learning to develop great relationships with one another instead of always relying on violence to resolve everything.
The most appealing aspect of TenSura is that Rimuru acts like a normal person, after dying one day and ending up in a different world where he is reincarnated into a slime, he decides that he is going to make the best of this opportunity, and if he can help others along the way then great! All he wants to do is live happily and make it a fun time while using his gifts responsibly within this world. The main story ends at episode 23 while the last two are a side story/revision. I do look forward to what the sequel will bring. If this sounds like your cup of tea then give TenSura a try, provided you're in the market for a less serious take on both fantasy and isekai. It's able to maintain a light-hearted tone without completely abandoning the plot, and its efforts at world-building have been honestly interesting.
*This review contains SPOILERS!*
That time I got reincarnated as a slime is basically a bad version of overlord. It started as a light hearted slimavilization which was fun in the beginning but then became horribly boring.
The premise starts off with our 37 years old virgin NEET being killed and reincarnated as a jesus with a mix personality of a mary sue and being nice because supposedly being nice and having a god like power can make girls with big tits or naked lolis to like you. There's literally no story here. Rimuru is building his own slimavilization along with everyone he meets. There are no
threats, no stakes, nor any tension in this already 1 dimentional story. The same goes with political workings as well. Our MC takes this Jesus attitude with everything, and characters always end up going 'oh okay, lets all be nice to each other'. In the meanwhile, the world has such physics that if monsters are named, then they will evolve. Basically my cat will evolve into a leopard if I name her.
All the characters are bland. All we have is an edgy MC, a big tiddy onee-san, another big tiddy dryad, a naked OP loli, a wolf and a bunch of goblins. Rest weren't rememberable at all. The only ones I liked were eaten the very episode they were introduced.
The worldbuilding is trash. The only thing we know about this world is about different species that live. The voice acting is bad at various levels accounting to childish voices. Even the music is pretty bad. Except for the first ending theme, which was semi-decent; the songs are a measure of how childish the show can go. The only thing that is preventing me from giving it a 1 is the artstyle and the animation, because of 8bit's solid technical staff.