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Reads 492
Total reads

While it's better than many current isekai, that's a pretty low bar to clear

Review of Tensei Shitara Slime Datta Ken
by Rivka
Posted on March 28th, 2019
Positive 6
Overall Rating
3 of 4 people found the following review useful

I had really enjoyed the first few episodes of this show, and then started feeling obligated to continue watching it. As a feminist, I found some of the running gags to feel more like microaggressions - constant reminders that even in a fantasy world with no restrictions women are still second class. There's also an undertone of cultural imperialism that galled.

Before I elaborate on that, first, the nice things about this show:

1) The protagonist Rimuru is an adult, and he tries his hardest to make difficult decisions as an inexperienced leader using logic and appealing to emotion. This is not a show that thinks children are the best option for saving/reforming a world... which is kind of refreshing.

2) I believed in Rimuru's story arc. Even if looking back on it his ascension to the role of primary leader of a new nation sounds OP and Gary Stu-ish as all get out, as I was watching each episode sold the idea well.

3) Nice animation, with occasional moments of brilliance.

4) NO SLAVERY. This is a low bar, but modern isekai fashion seems to be burrowing under it.

Now, for the problematic elements:

1) The female characters: There's unavoidable Boob Nonsense, at least once an episode, after Rimuru starts being carried around in slime form underneath the women's racks. One woman has gag boobs that bounce everywhere. Furthermore, the women are so dull, and blandly attractive. No exceptions allowed! (You never see a female Orc, who I would hope would look like Miss Piggy at best.) This isn't true for male characters, who are free to remain gonks after they "level up" when Rimuru names them. As a side note: even though he's genderless, Females Be Competing for Rimuru's attention. You never see women interacting otherwise (outside of group meetings), and apparently it's impossible for them to not be attracted to him. Why? Yes, he's powerful, but in his human form he looks like any scrawny teen. In addition to Rimuru's deceptive appearance, the show's second cour added an apparently-underage girl - yes, yes, she's a bijillion years old/super-powerful, but she acts like she's in middle school - who prances about in a thong. Keep your visibly-underaged characters dressed, and keep the "camera" off their crotches!

2) World-building and Leadership: Rimuru has bizarre success as a leader. He died as a thirty-something, and has only been in the fantasy world for a couple of years, yet he's wiser and more skilled at governing than anyone else. If anything, this is where he's Gary Stu-ish. What are the odds that every other leader is less competent? He gains followers who think he's the greatest guy ever... where are the dissidents? There have to be some! All we see are uniformly happy citizens and somewhat-worshipful council members. His leadership also focuses on making the original goblin village into a bustling metropolis... but it looks an awful lot like pre-industrial Japan, while neighboring nations have a generic European fantasy look. His female advisors are wearing kimono and a modern business suit, which he must've created as there's no precedent in this world for it. Why is Rimuru replacing whatever fashion/food/building culture that existed there with a Japanese one? If it's unintentional and just to add an air of familiarity to the setting, then the anatopism of it hurts my suspension of disbelief.

You might find that neither of these issues bother you. In that case, enjoy the show! 

My reviewing system for films and shows that are NOT anime:
1-5: I hated it. I also don't think it has redeeming qualities, so you shouldn't watch it either.
6: I didn't like it. It's not my thing, I didn't like the execution, I don't want to see it again. However, I don't think it is a BAD film or show - it has qualities that will recommend it to those who like that kind of thing.
7: It was fine. I didn't love it, and I don't need to see it again. I won't be sad if I never see it again.
8: I liked it. I didn't love it, and while I'd like to see it again, I wouldn't want to see it often.
9: I loved it. I would be sad if I never saw it again. I might want to see it every few years.
10: I loved it beyond description. I wouldn't mind re-watching it every year.


Clarifying my Anime rating system:
My number key below is an attempt to parse the small differences between 5 and 6, 7 and 8, & 9 and 10. When I rate, I consider my own enjoyment, the characterization and the plot, the appearance of the animation, and occasionally the soundtrack - in roughly that order. An anime will lose at least 1 point for presence of deal-breaker tropes (for example, comedic pedophilia), and more if the trope(s) ruined my enjoyment. On the other hand, it will gain at least 1 point for artistry in animation or sound.

Never Recommend:
1-4, inclusive. Further clarification: I don't expect to rate anything 1-4, as I would probably never finish watching something in this range of rating. It's likely to have bad plotting, subpar animation, bland characterizations, silly and/or irritating tropes, etc.; I would consider it to be pure excrement, and I would rather be getting unanesthetized surgery for the entire running time.

Cautious Recommending:
5: I watched at least part of it, and may have stopped due to not liking the plot twists, character derailment, specific tropes, etc. In this case, it started out with a higher score and slipped over time... because I normally don't watch anything that I would score below 6, except for movies (small time commitment).
6: I may or may not have watched the whole show, but I recognize deal-breaker issues in it, and I'm unlikely to rewatch (I would rewatch only if a friend begged me to). It just wasn't enjoyable enough for me to forgive its flaws. There would be huge caveats to any recommendation.

Likely to Recommend:
7: Not my thing, but usually I at least respect it. Generally, I didn't like it enough to think I would rewatch it, but also didn't see huge problems in the plot, characterizations, etc. and thought it was worth finishing. I might suggest it to someone if I know they like the specific sub-genre or other work by the studio.
8: I had a good time watching it, but it didn't move me the way a 9 or a 10 does; it's possible that over time I would upgrade it to a 9 if I liked it more on reflection. I would be willing to rewatch it. I'd consider it mostly harmless to view, and would recommend it with the occasional caveat.

Highly Recommend:
9: I enjoyed very much. It may have had one or two issues, but not enough to diminish enjoyment. It's possible that over time I would downgrade it to an 8 (changing tastes) or upgrade to a 10 (realize it's never left my mind). I'm likely to rewatch, and likely to buy the DVDs. I'd recommend it to most audiences.
10: Virtually flawless. I'd definitely rewatch, and definitely want to buy DVDs. I would shill this to anyone.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful. Was this review helpful to you?
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