Anime viewers have gotten very used to seeing a handful of isekai-themed titles being released every season, and the Summer 2022 anime season is no exception. From returning favorites such as overlord and The Devil Is a Part Timer! to brand new offerings including Harem in the Labyrinth of Another World and Uncle From Another Worldfans of fantasy and isekai shows have plenty to choose from.
However, one new title that’s really missing its mark is My Isekai Life (short for My Isekai Life: I Gained a Second Character Class and Became the Strongest Sage in the World!). Viewers who are burned out on isekai titles may not have expected much from this series to begin with, but what some might not have noticed is that based purely on its premise, My Isekai Life had the potential to be not only unique within its genre but also comedy gold in its own right.
Like the majority of other isekai anime titles out there both past and present, My Isekai Life is based on a series of light novels. Spanning 11 volumes to date since 2017, the most recent of which was published just last month, the franchise follows main character Sano Yuji — a former corporate office worker who was inadvertently whisked away to a classic fantasy-style world filled with all manner of magic and mystery. Discovering that his novice Monster Tamer character class allows him to befriend slimes, Yuji also immediately gains the second character class of Sage when the slimes absorb enough magical knowledge to make Yuji one of the most powerful sorcerers in the world.
While none of this may sound particularly original or imaginative, the initially-listed premise on sites such as MyAnimeList made it sound as though Yuji, a workaholic by preference, would like nothing more than to escape this new isekai life of his and get back to his stacks of paperwork and overflowing inbox. in reality, My Isekai Life has left some hints in the form of brief flashbacks that Yuji was desperately unhappy being an overworked corporate drone — most likely stressed and lonely, and certainly not at all enthused or fulfilled by his job or day-to-day routine. However, in making the latter the case instead of the former, the anime has missed out on an incredible chance.
Had Yuji been quite happy with his work and position in real-world Japan, it would have been genuinely interesting to see what lengths he would go to in order to try and escape the isekai world. more than that, My Isekai Life could have actually been a laugh-out-loud comedy. Since most isekai titles are full of heroic male protagonists who go around rescuing maidens in distress, saving grateful villagers and measuring out justice to evildoers, turning Yuji into the kind of guy who would rather be rubber-stamping documents and answering emails would have been a brilliant move. Instead of charging willingly into battle, he could have been literally dragged into fights by his party members, whining about how he just wanted to get back to his precious forms and filing.
It’s therefore highly unfortunate that My Isekai Life opted to go for its far more conventional route. For all his once-promising backstory, Yuji is yet another ridiculously overpowered protagonist with little in the way of a personality and even less charisma — a solo player who’s too self-serious and self-absorbed to communicate much with others (even when he’s acting as the dashing savior to helpless, impractically-dressed young women), and whose own slimes have far more appeal.
My Isekai Life‘s worst offense isn’t that it’s one more isekai series to add to the by now hundreds of others. It’s that it could have still fit into this genre while making Yuji the exact opposite of nearly every other isekai protagonist — potentially creating a truly hilarious show in the process — and even so, elected not to take advantage of this rare opportunity.