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Solo Leveling anime is coming!!! Well, pretty old news but I felt the need to get you excited once more for the upcoming adaptation. It is a groundbreaking Manhwa and has been rising in popularity for years. Now, the anime adaptation is just months away. The excitement I have for Solo Leveling can be compared to the excitement I had for Zom 100. Well, it might be more given I have been waiting for it since I started reading the Manhwa.

On November 20, 2021, I was scrolling through YouTube when I came across a video by my favorite AniTuber. It was about a Manhwa that was not only compared to Sword Art Online but was also considered better than it. Little did I know, my journey with this particular piece would start there. Last year, the anime adaptation of that piece was announced. With over three trailers with a whole lot of details revealed, I guess now is the best time for me to write my thoughts on this.


Solo Leveling Origins

Solo Leveling, originally titled Na Honjaman Rebeleop (Only I Level Up) was first written as a web novel by Chugong and later illustrated by Jang Sung-rak aka Dubu as a serialized Webtoon by Kakao. It tells the story of Sung Jin-woo, an E-class hunter who has the title of “The World’s Weakest.” During one of his expeditions, Jin-woo and his party are ambushed and nearly annihilated.

Set in an alternate South Korea, where individuals with special abilities are tasked with entering an interdimensional portal known as, The Gate to hunt down monsters and kill the boss within a certain time frame, failing to do so would result in the monsters breaching the Gate and causing rampage. These beings are called Hunters. They range from E to A and S types.

When Jin-woo gained the ability to level up his constant rank, he made the choice to keep it hidden, even from his own sister and go on a journey of Grinding. Accessing exclusive dungeons and side-quests that are only accessible to him, completing daily quests and fighting opponents that were once 10x stronger than him, Jin-woo goes on from the title of “The World’s Weakest,” to becoming The World’s Strongest.

Solo Leveling - Poster - Deshi Geek
Solo Leveling – Poster – Deshi Geek

The Engaging Fantasy World Within

Solo Leveling is not your typical Isekai, Power Fantasy story; as it has some Shonen elements to it. As mentioned before, he has access to exclusive dungeons which provide him with items and loot that he won’t find in a normal dungeon. But these dungeons are optional and are several levels higher than his. Therefore, he more often than not comes across near-death situations, only to come out on top and dominate the regular dungeons. In other words, he works and earns his way to the “World’s Strongest Title.”

Basically, the manhwa manages to balance both Isekai and Shonen tropes and allows us to enjoy both of them at the same time. The same goes for the art style. Unlike manga, manhwa is not limited to a single-page completion. And with Dubu’s art style, people were instantly hooked. However, the manhwa had some faults of its own. And one that did not go unnoticed by me, nor by other weebs like me.

Solo Leveling | OFFICIAL TRAILER 2

What To Expect From Solo Leveling Anime?

On 4 July 2022, the announcement trailer for Solo Leveling was launched, and of course, the crowd went wild. Except for me as I looked into who was involved with the production. They were not bad or anything, they were just not whom I had in mind when expecting an anime adaptation. A-1 Pictures is responsible for the production and animation of the project.

My first thoughts were, “Why weren’t MAPPA or Ufotable involved? They’d do a better job.” And that thought came from what that very favorite AniTuber of mine had said, “I got two words for you: CG Shadows.” Those who read the manhwa, know what I am talking about. And of course, with the passing of the illustrator of Solo Leveling, Dubu; the feelings of insecurity were much higher.

I remember I was reading his latest work, ‘The Return of a Disaster Class Hero’. I had read up to the latest translated chapter, then I went to the comment section and saw that people were saying how Dubu had passed away. It came as a shock to me, because never have I ever experienced such a moment. And the timing was not any better, as his magnum opus was getting all the hype and he died just when the anime was announced.

After watching the trailer I was like, “Please allow me to collect and take back the words that came out of my mouth.” The animation done by A-1 Pictures is no joke. Rather than relying on 3D graphics, you can feel the 2D animation style enveloping the anime, and making the manhwa literally come to life. And I can certainly say that Chugong and Dubu will be very proud of the material that is about to come.

Solo Leveling - Scene - Deshi Geek
Solo Leveling – Scene – Deshi Geek

Why Will The Anime Succeed?

Hallyu!!! One of the most influential scenes in the Pop Culture market. There are two major sides to Hallyu aka The Korean Wave. And they are K-Pop and K-Drama. Since Psy’s Gangnam Style introduced the world to K-Pop and BTS popularized it, people around the world have been consuming many Korean materials, from their songs to their films and of course drama. With Squid Game’s success along with many other globally popular K-Dramas and some Korean Variety Shows, nuff said.

But what does it have to do with Solo Leveling? Well, Solo Leveling is a Korean Manhwa. Meaning the location, characters and everything about it is Korean. Sure, the language is Japanese, and it may get an English Dub soon; but if it is released in Korean as well, I can’t count the number of people who’d go crazy for this. And if they have a K-Pop number for an Opening?

This isn’t the first time when mediums from South Korea were adapted into Anime. Noblesse, God of High School, and Tower of God all received anime adaptations. And of course, let’s not forget how China took over the Anime medium with Link/Click.

I remember when we were in a volunteer meeting for AnimeCon 2023 Sakura. And there somehow our topic led to the inclusion of Korean materials in an Anime event. One of the volunteers mentioned how both of them are different and have nothing to do with each other, and at that time me and another volunteer mentioned both Solo Leveling and Link/Click, and how both these pieces coming from a different country, took over the medium.

What I am saying is Japanese Anime Industry, as great as it may be, has a very recognizable trait. If those recognizable traits are presented to us over and over again, the audience will be bored. And that’s where anime like Solo Leveling and Link/Click comes up. They offer a fresh new landscape and culture in a medium we already love.

Solo Leveling | OFFICIAL TRAILER 3

My Personal Notion

I’ll just say it, I’m not good with closing speeches. But all good things have to end, right? And what better way to end than to leave an expectation on my part for the anime? Honestly, I don’t expect much, other than an enjoyable viewing experience. Since anime is often consumed as an escape from real-life troubles, and the power fantasy elements in the anime cement that feeling.

And of course, with how I am consuming K-materials, I expect a K-Pop band to cover the Opening and Ending soundtracks of the Anime. And I hope they will be great ones. But what are your thoughts? Let me know in the comment below.



If my name didn't give it away, I am a Baka and an Otaku. And, I do a pretty good job at being both of them. More often than not at the same time.

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