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Solo Leveling 2024 is finally here. It’s been here for over a month but my schedule was too tight for me to write a review. Despite that, I am still here writing about the anime which I had made a feature news about in the past. An anime that I had been waiting for a long time and not just me, but everyone else. Only to be met with disappointment.

The A-1 Pictures production created so much hype and was backed by the immense popularity of the Manhwa. However, that same positive might have resulted in the ultimate negative for Solo Leveling 2024. Some unwanted controversies also didn’t help. This was maybe a lifetime opportunity for a Korean Manhwa to reach the heights of One Piece, Naruto, and Bleach with anime adaptation but it failed miserably. 

The Solo Leveling 2024 Anime disappointed me. And the reason itself is something that I can’t put a finger on. Because the anime itself is faithful for the most part, yet it failed to hit the mark it was supposed to. Even TxT’s involvement could not save the anime. So, what went wrong? Well, let’s find out.


What Made The Manhwa So Special?

As mentioned in my previous entry regarding Solo Leveling, it is a manhwa with elements of Isekai and Shonen. Meaning, despite all the “Power Fantasy” and “Overpowered MC” elements, the manhwa displays the struggle of being a protagonist of the story with that Shonen element intact. In other words, we get to see Sung Jin-Woo struggle, which makes us relate to him and love him. Hence, when he succeeds somewhere, anywhere, we celebrate that victory with him.

With this hauntingly perfect combination of both the elements and the late Dubu’s art style in the Manhwa, Solo Leveling gained a strong following in both Domestic and Worldwide spheres. And with its success, it introduced the manhwa industry to a wider audience than ever before. I never knew manhwa existed until I heard of Solo Leveling. That’s what made Solo Leveling so special.

Solo Leveling 2024 - Poster - Deshi Geek
Solo Leveling 2024 – Poster – Deshi Geek

Where Did Solo Leveling 2024 Miss Its Mark?

The animation of Solo Leveling 2024 was done by A-1 Pictures, who have previously worked on Fairy Tail, Kaguya-sama and Mashle. They are not Ufotable or MAPPA, but their animation is no joke. They handled it very well. Hence, we can cross animation out of the reasons for failure. Then where did the anime fail? The plot came from the very manhwa that put it on the map and was faithful to it as well. Well, the answer is pacing.

Ever since my review on Zom100, I brought up the topic of “Adaptation Game”, where how each adaptation of each anime varies from its source material to be unique. Sometimes it works, and sometimes it doesn’t. Well, this time, it was the latter for Solo Leveling 2024. By trying to be unique, they tampered with the pacing and ruined my experience with the anime.

With exposition and extra content in Solo Leveling 2024 that despite being a part of the story, was not released much later in the manhwa. It’s like the anime was trying to build an anime that not only new viewers could be introduced to, but also old readers could enjoy and not be bored. Sadly, their execution was disappointing, to say the least, and this change of pacing not only hampered the viewing experience but made me want to take up the manhwa once again to experience a well-paced story.

Solo Leveling | OFFICIAL TRAILER 4

A Shift In Perspective

Another damage that was done to Solo Leveling 2024 due to the pacing was the perspective as well. The first season of the Solo Leveling manhwa, for the majority of the part, was Sung Jin-Woo’s story. It was his story of becoming an S-ranked Hunter from an E-ranked Hunter. As a reader, we celebrate his success with him and what happens with Korea is neither our, nor his problems. Because he has a lot on his table.

The moment he becomes an S-ranked Hunter, he has no threat that can harm him. That’s when the manhwa shifted its focus to Korea as a whole. Where in the beginning Jin-Woo had to fight his way to become Korea’s Strongest Hunter, now he has to fight his way to becoming The World’s Strongest Hunter. And through his actions, Korea prospered. This was achieved due to the proper pacing of the manhwa which was twisted in Solo Leveling 2024 anime.

Now imagine those very things I mentioned happening in the first episode. Why would you care about the world if you don’t know about the protagonist inhabiting it? That’s the question many authors ask themselves when writing a story. But Solo Leveling 2024, and whoever wrote the script for it, probably read season 1 of the manhwa and thought, “Let’s try and cram everything but not sacrifice any content. Let’s add some while we are at it as well.” The result? Well, you can see for yourself.

Solo Leveling 2024 - Still - Deshi Geek
Solo Leveling 2024 – Still – Deshi Geek

Solo Leveling 2024 A Major Disappointment

I must have been a bit too harsh with this review of Solo Leveling 2024. But truth be told, I was anticipating this very much. It had everything I asked for, yet it failed me with something that I could not ignore. And I am sure that I am not the only one who feels this way. Even then it’s an anime worth the watch. It just got buried in all the overhyped expectations.

Despite that, Solo Leveling 2024 has really good animation and some great fight scenes that I believe newer audiences will love. And of course, there is the TxT’s song: Level, which was used as their opening. That can help viewers introduce themselves to K-Pop as well. But despite all of this, I will still say that Solo Leveling could have done better.



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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