Mushoku Tensei

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Mushoku Tensei
Mushoku Tensei 1.png
The first light novel volume of Mushoku Tensei
無職転生 〜異世界行ったら本気だす〜
(Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu)
GenreHarem, isekai[1]
Novel series
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Published byShōsetsuka ni Narō
Original runNovember 22, 2012April 3, 2015
Volumes25 (List of volumes)
Light novel
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byShirotaka
Published byMedia Factory
English publisher
ImprintMF Books
DemographicMale
Original runJuly 27, 2014 – present
Volumes25 (List of volumes)
Manga
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byYuka Fujikawa
Published byMedia Factory
English publisher
MagazineMonthly Comic Flapper
DemographicSeinen
Original runMay 2, 2014 – present
Volumes16 (List of volumes)
Audio drama
Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu - Ten'i Meikyū-hen
StudioFrontier Works
ReleasedApril 26, 2017
Manga
Mushoku Tensei: Roxy Gets Serious
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byShoko Iwami
Published byKadokawa Shoten
English publisher
MagazineComicWalker
DemographicSeinen
Original runDecember 21, 2017 – present
Volumes9
Manga
Mushoku Tensei: 4-koma ni Natte mo Honki Dasu
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byNogiwa Kaede
Published byASCII Media Works
MagazineComic Dengeki Daioh "g"
DemographicShōnen
Original runOctober 25, 2018August 27, 2020
Volumes3
Anime television series
Directed byManabu Okamoto
Produced by
  • Takahiro Yamanaka
  • Sōkichi Onoda (1-11)
  • Mitsuteru Hishiyama (12-23, OVA)
  • Takumi Morii
  • Ryōsuke Imai
  • Tomoyuki Ōwada
  • Sho Ōsuga
  • Takurō Hatakeyama
Written byManabu Okamoto
Music byYoshiaki Fujisawa
StudioStudio Bind
Licensed byCrunchyroll
Original networkTokyo MX, KBS, BS11, SUN
English network
Original run January 11, 2021 – present
Episodes23 + OVA (List of episodes)
Game
Mushoku Tensei: Game ni Natte mo Honki Dasu
DeveloperAiming Co., Ltd.
PublisherBeaglee Co., Ltd.
GenreRPG
PlatformAndroid, iOS
ReleasedMarch 27, 2021
Manga
Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu - Shitsui no Majutsushi-hen
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byKazusa Yoneda
Published byNTT Solmare
MagazineComic Cmoa
DemographicSeinen
Original runDecember 20, 2021 – present
Manga
Mushoku Tensei: Eris wa Honki de Kiba o Togu
Written byRifujin na Magonote
Illustrated byTake Higake
Published bySquare Enix
MagazineGangan Online
DemographicShōnen
Original runMarch 15, 2022 – present

Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation (Japanese: 無職転生 〜異世界行ったら本気だす〜, Hepburn: Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu, lit. "Jobless Reincarnation: I Will Seriously Try If I Go to Another World") is a Japanese light novel series by Rifujin na Magonote[a] and illustrated by Shirotaka. The series is about a jobless and hopeless man who dies after having a sad and withdrawn life and reincarnates in a fantasy world while keeping his memories, determined to enjoy his new life without regrets under the name Rudeus Greyrat. Originally published on the internet web novel website Shōsetsuka ni Narō in November 2012, a year later it was announced the series would receive a print release under Media Factory's MF Books imprint with illustrations done by a Pixiv user called Shirotaka.[b]

A manga adaptation by Yuka Fujikawa began serialization in the June 2014 issue of Monthly Comic Flapper. Seven Seas Entertainment licensed the tankōbon volumes of the manga for localization in North America. The company also has licensed the original light novels. On Syosetu's rankings, the web novel has made cumulative appearances as the most popular work on the website.[3] As of March 2022, over 5 million copies of the light novels have been sold worldwide.[4]

An anime television series adaptation by Studio Bind aired from January to December 2021. A second season has been announced. The anime adaptation received overwhelmingly positive responses from both critics and audiences and is considered one of the best anime of 2021.[5]

Plot[edit]

An unnamed 34-year-old Japanese NEET is evicted from his home after failing to attend his parents' funeral. After some self-reflection, he concludes that his life is ultimately pointless. Still, he intercepts a speeding truck heading towards a group of teenagers in an attempt to do something noteworthy for the first time in his life. He pulls one of them out of harm's way just before he dies. He awakens in the body of a baby and discovers he has been reincarnated in a world of sword and sorcery. He resolves to succeed in his new life, abandoning his previous identity in place of Rudeus Greyrat. Rudeus develops a strong affinity for magic due to his aptitude and early training. He becomes a student of demon magician Roxy Migurdia during his youth, a friend of demihuman Sylphiette, and a teacher of magic to noble heiress Eris Boreas Greyrat. The story chronicles his new life's highlights as he attempts to overcome the failures of his previous one.

Production[edit]

Rifujin na Magonote commented that he created Rudeus aware of his controversial personality. He intended Rudeus' actions would be more meaningful in the process. He had no issue criticizing Rudeus at an early stage and left it to the audience to judge him. Magnote wanted the audience to pay attention to a specific side of his character and be able to relate to him.[6] Earlier, he said that I felt a big response in episodes 6 to 7 of the web version of the novels, but that was just when Roxy took Rudeus out. Thanks to her, Rudeus overcomes the trauma. Such a story gave a warm impression to his readers and made him think, "Let's grow in this direction."[7]

After publishing the first parts of his work, Rifujin wrote that he intended the series to last at least a hundred chapters.[8] Due to criticism towards his work, Rifujin considered ending the series prematurely but was inspired to continue when his work reached the first place on Syosetu's daily rankings.[8][9] Originally, the story arc where Rudeus' reunites with Aisha was supposed to be completely different from the published work.[10] The author intended to have Lilia die off-screen, and Aisha to be hiding under a different identity. However, he found Lilia's death anticlimactic and decided against it; thus, he had to rewrite the story arc to make sense of her survival and lack of contact. Rifujin stated the story arc might be bizarre due to the changes but expresses no regrets in his decision; he noted Lilia's survival made him reconsider Zenith's condition in the story.[10]

Media[edit]

Web novel and light novel[edit]

Rifujin na Magonote published his work on the online web novel website, Shōsetsuka ni Narō (Shortened to Syosetu); the first chapter was uploaded on November 22, 2012.[11] In November 2013, the author announced his work was to be released as a light novel under Media Factory's MF Books imprint; regardless, the author stated his intentions to continue publishing his chapters online.[12] The illustrator for the light novel is a Pixiv user called SiroTaka.[13] Seven Seas Entertainment has licensed the light novels for publication in North America.[14] They made localization changes in their translations of the light novels, such as toning down Rudeus' perverted behavior and removing references to rape. They later decided to "re-evaluate" their localization decisions.[15]

Rifujin intends to create a sequel to the web novel series based in the Six-Sided Universe. On January 15, 2021, the author stated that he plans to finish the Orc Eroica web novel first. He also suffers from health problems and plans to heal before starting the new work.[16]

As of February 2022, the light novel series has over 10 million copies in circulation.[17]

Manga[edit]

In the May 2014 issue of Monthly Comic Flapper, it was announced that the manga adaptation of Mushoku Tensei by Yuka Fujikawa would premiere in the June issue;[18][19] though Yuka is the author of the manga series, character designs are credited to SiroTaka.[20] Media Works collected the individual chapters into tankōbon volumes; the first volume was released in October 2014.[20] In January 2015, Seven Seas Entertainment announced its licensing of the manga series for localization in North America under the title Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation.[21]

A second manga series illustrated by Kazusa Yoneda, titled Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu - Shitsui no Majutsushi-hen (無職転生 ~異世界行ったら本気だす~ 失意の魔術師編) began serialization in NTT Solmare's Comic Cmoa website on December 20, 2021. It adapts the light novel's seventh volume.[22]

Spin-offs[edit]

A spin-off manga illustrated by Shoko Iwami, titled Mushoku Tensei: Roxy Gets Serious (無職転生 ~ロキシーだって本気です~, Mushoku Tensei: Rokishī Datte Honki Desu), began serialization online in Kadokawa Shoten's ComicWalker website on December 21, 2017.[23] As of December 23, 2021, nine tankōbon volumes have been published.[24] Seven Seas Entertainment licensed the manga in September 2019 for print and digital release.[25]

A second spin-off manga illustrated by Kaede Nogiwa, titled Mushoku Tensei: 4-koma ni Natte mo Honki Dasu (無職転生 ~4コマになっても本気だす~), was serialized in ASCII Media Works' Comic Dengeki Daioh "g" magazine from October 25, 2018,[26] to August 27, 2020.[27] Three tankōbon volumes were published from October 26, 2019,[28] to December 26, 2020.[29]

A third spin-off manga illustrated by Take Higake, titled Mushoku Tensei: Eris wa Honki de Kiba o Togu (無職転生~エリスは本気で牙を砥ぐ~), began serialization online in Square Enix's Gangan Online service on March 15, 2022.[30]

Audio drama[edit]

An audio drama adaptation, titled Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu - Ten'i Meikyū-hen (無職転生 ~異世界行ったら本気だす~ 転移迷宮編), was released by Frontier Works on April 26, 2017.[31]

Anime[edit]

On March 15, 2019, the official website of MF Books announced that an anime adaptation of Mushoku Tensei would be produced.[32] The anime was later announced on October 18, 2019, to be a television series, which is directed by Manabu Okamoto and animated by Studio Bind, with Kazutaka Sugiyama designing the characters, and Yoshiaki Fujisawa composing the music. Egg Firm is credited for production.[33] The series was originally scheduled to premiere in 2020,[34] but it was delayed until January 2021.[35] The first half aired from January 11 to March 22, 2021 on Tokyo MX, KBS, BS11, and SUN.[36][c]

At the conclusion of the first half of the series on March 22, 2021, a second half was announced.[37] The second half was originally set to premiere in July 2021, but was delayed to October 2021, due to "various circumstances."[38] The second half aired from October 4 to December 20, 2021.[39][d] An unaired episode was bundled with the anime's fourth Blu-ray Disc volume, which was released on March 16, 2022.[40]

The first opening theme song is "The Traveler's Song" (旅人の唄, "Tabibito no Uta"). The second opening theme song is "The Awakening Song" (目覚めの唄, "Mezame no Uta"). The third opening theme song is "The Inheritance Song" (継承の唄, "Keishō no uta"). The fourth opening theme song is "The Prayer Song" (祈りの唄, "Inori no uta"). The fifth opening theme song is "A Distant Child Guard Song" (遠くの子守の唄, "Tōku no komori no uta"). The first ending theme song is "Only" (オンリー, "Onrī"). The second ending theme song is "The Way To Go With The wind" (風と行く道, "Kaze to Iku Michi"). All of the openings and endings were performed by Yuiko Ōhara.[41]

Funimation licensed the series and streamed it on its website in North America, Mexico, Brazil and the British Isles, in Europe through Wakanim, and in Australia and New Zealand through AnimeLab.[42] On February 13, 2021, Funimation announced the series would be receiving an English dub, with the first episode premiering the next day.[43] Following Sony's acquisition of Crunchyroll, the series was moved to Crunchyroll.[44] Muse Communication has licensed the series in Southeast Asia and South Asia and streamed it on their Muse Asia YouTube channel, and on iQIYI and Bilibili in Southeast Asia.[45]

On March 6, 2022, it was announced that a second season has been green-lit.[46]

Game[edit]

A smartphone game developed by Aiming Co., Ltd. titled Mushoku Tensei: Game ni Natte mo Honki Dasu (無職転生 ~ゲームになっても本気だす~, lit. "Mushoku Tensei - I'll Seriously Try Even If It's Made Into a Game") was released on March 27, 2021.[47][48]

Reception[edit]

Web and light novel[edit]

On Syosetu's rankings, the web novel made cumulative appearances as the most popular work on the website.[3] The light novels have appeared on Oricon's charts and have also ranked on T-site's novel popularity polls.[49][50][51][52] By August 2022, the light novels reached 8.5 million copies in circulation.[53]

However, the main character Rudeus has been criticized for being overtly perverted.[54] Real Sound was concerned about how the narrative portrays Rudeus' previous life as it appears to focus highly on retired school students and issues they had at school comparing it to the famous isekai Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World. Nevertheless, Rudeus dedicates his new life to focusing on surpassing his flaws was noted to turn him into a more sympathetic main character.[55] Re:Zero − Starting Life in Another World novelist Tappei Nagatsuki said that one of the strongest points of Mushoku Tensei was the handling of Rudeus who is noted to suffer in a similar fashion to the main character from the visual novel Clannad.[56]

Anime[edit]

The anime adaptation received overwhelmingly positive responses from both critics and audiences and is considered one of the best anime of 2021.[5][57]

It also received numerous accolades from the anime, including three wins (Favorite Fantasy and Favorite Supporting Female Character for Ghislaine Dedoldia ) over seven nominations, including the New Anime of the Season at Winter 2021 (2nd Place for General Rankings) for Winter 2021 and two wins (Favorite Action or Adventure and Favorite Supporting Male Character for Ruijerd Superdia) over sixteen nominations including runner-up for Fall 2021 at the 8th Anime Trending Awards,[58] making it the most nominations at two seasons in a single year. Ruijerd Superdia is the second character from Mushoku Tensei to win a seasonal best-supporting character award after Ghislaine Dedoldia, who also won as best supporting female character for the previous season.[59][60]

Controversy[edit]

On February 8, 2021, before the premiere of the fifth episode, the series was suspended from the Chinese streaming network Bilibili due to controversial content described as "immorality" by some critics, most prominently a streamer named LexBurner, who called the anime "for bottom-feeders in the social hierarchy," which led viewers to leave low reviews for the anime on the streaming site. This also led to LexBurner, one of Bilibili's top streamers, banned from the site.[61][62] Later, author Rifujin na Magonote commented on LexBurner's actions as follows: "His words are only his personal opinion, and he is free to hold whatever views he likes. Although I am displeased at how he has insulted other viewers, anime is not just made for successful people, so I hope that those who can enjoy it will enjoy it." He further commented: "If that is the kind of online presence he is, that's just the way it is sometimes. Even in Japan, there are plenty of people like him, although they might not have his influence. As far as I am concerned, instead of engaging with him, I think it is more important to ignore him and grow your own communities. Thank you!"[62]

The series has also received user criticism in China for containing perceived misogynistic comments and content.[63]

Explanatory notes[edit]

  1. ^ Japanese: 理不尽な孫の手, Hepburn: Rifujin na Magonote, lit. "Unreasonable Backscratcher"
  2. ^ シロタカ, Shiro Taka, "White Hawk"
  3. ^ Tokyo MX lists the series premiere at 24:00 on January 10, 2021, which is effectively 12:00 a.m. JST on January 11.
  4. ^ Tokyo MX lists the second half premiere at 24:00 on October 3, 2021, which is effectively 12:00 a.m. JST on October 4.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation (Light Novel)". Seven Seas Entertainment. Retrieved May 21, 2020.
  2. ^ AnimaxAsia (February 7, 2022). "Mushoku Tensei jobless reincarnation - Trailer". YouTube. Retrieved February 7, 2022.
  3. ^ a b "Comic Flapper's new series, Mushoku Tensei" (in Japanese). Natalie. May 2, 2014. Retrieved February 14, 2015.
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  5. ^ a b Dec. 15, byIgn Staff Posted; 2021; A.m, 1 (December 14, 2021). "The Best Anime of 2021 Winner". IGN Southeast Asia. Retrieved December 30, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
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External links[edit]