That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime

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    Review:

    That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime otherwise known as Tensei shitara Slime Datta Ken is a fantasy/action based isekai series which was first released in the Autumn of 2018. This show has also spawned a second season with the first part originally airing in the winter of 2021 while the second half is currently ongoing. The series centres on 37-year-old officer Satoru Mikami who (surprise, surprise) gets killed early on in typical isekai fashion. It is not death by truck-kun instead he dies from a deranged killer who stabs him out of the blue for reasons that remain unclear… His death is not a final one as Mikami wakes up as a slime in a cavern with no exit in sight.

    At first glance I Got Reincarnated as a Slime seems to follow the hallmarks of a standard isekai series. Early death? Check. Reincarnation? Check. Main character being overpowered (OP)? Check. The initial premise does not sound promising and could give you the jeebies in watching further. However, any fears you do have are likely to be unfounded.

    You see I Got Reincarnated as a Slime takes the isekai genre and puts a different but unique twist. Instead of focusing on the main character simply crushing his foes one after another this show takes a very different tact. What this series decides to is focus on a story that tells the journey of gaining strength through the forging of alliances/promises; promoting the idea that working towards each groups mutual interests ultimately delivers the best outcome for everyone. If you think about it, it makes sense seeing as our main protagonist is a slime.

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    Going back to the story, after initially escaping his confines, our slime befriends a group of goblins who recognise, despite his modest appearance, has great power within. Helping this band of goblins from an immediate danger in one swoop he solves their existential crisis whilst at the same creating an alliance with another group. From there he decides to build a village and hopes to create prosperity for his new townspeople. However due to the lack of skills and equipment he must venture out on further adventures to further develop the town. This dynamic of town building intertwined with adventure is one of the central dynamics of Slime Reincarnation that separates this series from all other isekai shows. It is a unique take that is executed for the most part successfully. The sense of wanting to know what happens next is strong and the episodes can easily pass pretty quickly.

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    This trend is maintained for an extended period of time as even when the number of allies increase and the influence of the town increases our slime still has major problems as he begins to gain the unwanted attention of power foes. The people he has amassed must then all work together to overcome one of the most powerful foes on the land, a demon lord. The conclusion of this battle is pretty epic and up until then I would highly rate Slime Reincarnation. These events cover the first half of the series.

    The high standard is not retained to the same degree in the second half unfortunately. As whilst the town building aspect did continue (which was good) the adversities contained in the second half lacked the punch that came before. Don’t get me wrong, it was still a decent ride but the lack of a strong villains did reduce the Drama and tension. I got a sense that one of the major purposes of the second half was to lay the foundations for a second season. This was because there seemed to be a greater emphasis on the political alignment of the major factions. Moreover, an entire story arc is devoted to fulfilling a promise of an old character that involved helping and saving some allies (me thinks future key allies). Those two points make me ponder that what I saw as a build-up for greater things to come. If this is indeed the case then whilst the enjoyment wasn’t the same as before it could still prove worthwhile if these plot points are followed through. Let us hope that is the case.

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    Now despite all the positive things I have said so far, I can only give a balanced review if I highlight some of the possible shortcomings. The biggest weakness could actually prove to be a strength depending on your viewpoint. You probably know what I am going to say… As our slime hero gains allies, he also gains girls and the accompanying fanservice that go with it. On top of fanservice you also get more incidents where the girls fight for his interest and at times this can almost resemble a scene from a harem series. This harem aspect never becomes the central focus of any episode but it certainly becomes more noticeable as the show progresses.

    The other point of contention that may leave you scratching your head is how all the major allies are surprisingly agreeable; they never play politics with the slime hero or the other allies. There are no dumb power games played to undermine other parties. I feel this was a missed opportunity as some internal conflict could have easily added a dose of Drama. I just hope something like this is explored in later seasons… The final issue I see is that some of the characters may not gel with you but this shouldn’t be a big issue as the cast is so big that any character you dislike can easily be ignored.

    In terms of animation this series delivers a good standard that is maintained throughout the story. All the races shown are well depicted and it was always amusing to see the results when characters “level up”. Action scenes are generally well executed although the CGI used for one major fight is noticeable and wonky. This shouldn’t detract you too much as it only covers a few short scenes. If you like fanservice then rest assured that the quality here was always good. I was indifferent about any of the openings and endings but for those curious the first opening was Nameless story by Takuma Terashima while the first ending theme is Another colony by True. The second opening song was Megurumono by Terashima while the second ending is Little Soldier by Azusa Tadokoro.

    Overall, Slime Reincarnation is a good series with a unique take on the isekai genre. If you are a fan of fantasy then you will like this even more as many races are included in this show: demons, goblins, orcs, ogres, lizardmen, dragons it has it all. The town building, alliances and world building are all aspects that could reel you in and are the biggest draws to this series. The main point sticking point is the level of fanservice and the personality of some characters particularly the later additions. On the whole though I would recommend watching this show especially the first 14 episodes which is the stronger half of the series.

    Story 8 – Unique story that is delivers well on its promise. The town and world building aspects creates a dynamic that keeps you wanting to see more. It is the strong point of Slime Reincarnation.

    Characters 6 – Our Slime hero is pretty smart and often finds way of negotiating the best outcomes in any given scenario. He is witty and cracks good jokes. His back-and-forth banter with the “old sage” gave me a chuckle a number of times. Secondary characters are decent but they are mainly there to drive the story forward; and do not (for the most part) offer a whole lot of depth. Some of the later characters will annoy some with their antics.

    Animation 7 – Good standard maintained throughout the 24-episode run. Action scenes are well delivered and for people who enjoy fanservice those scenes are captured well. Speaking of girls, the range of girls on offer here means there is plenty of eye candy to enjoy.

    Overall 7.5 – Slime Reincarnation is primarily a story driven series. That doesn’t mean the characters aren’t fun but when compared to other series the cast are not particularly original. What makes this show a worthwhile watch is the dynamic of the storyline. Hopefully the second season can build on the foundation the second half setup and we see even more epic battles in the future.
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