Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It” seems to be starting off the series with a bang. A very bloody bang, from the looks of it. What else do you call it when the very first episode of this anime features the main character Sung Jin-woo in some very bloody action?

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It”: Details

Solo Leveling textless key visual.
Sung Jinwoo is the least impressive looking person here, by the way.

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It” is the very first episode of this anime adaptation of the South Korean webnovel series of the same name by Chugong. A-1 Pictures (Black Butler, Blue Exorcist, Sword Art Online) is the animation studio behind this anime.

Shunsuke Nakashige is the director of Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It”, with Noboru Kimura as the writer, and Shunsuke Nakashige (again) and Hirotaka Tokuda doing the storyboard. Shunsuke Nakashige also happens to be the director of the anime overall, with Noboru Kimura also being the writer for the same. Hiroyuki Sawano is the composer of the music you hear in the anime.

Speaking of music: the opening theme music for Solo Leveling as a whole is “Level” by Sawano and Tomorrow X Together. Meanwhile, “Request” by Krage is the ending theme music.

Voice Cast

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It” stars the voices of Taito Ban (Aleks Le in English dub) as Sung Jin-woo, and Haruna Mikawa (Dani Chambers in English dub) as Lee Joo-hee. Other notable voice roles in this episode is Reina Ueda (Michelle Rojas in English dub) as Cha Hae-in, and Daisuke Hirakawa (Ian Sinclair in English dub) as Choi Jong-in.

When and Where to Watch

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It” made its streaming debut on January 6, 2024. You can this episode only on Crunchyroll for now. In fact, you can only watch this anime in general on Crunchyroll for now.

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It”: Synopsis

Why it it that every shonen protagonist ends up looking like Kirito?

Normally, this would be the part of my review where I give you all a spoiler-filled plot summary of this episode. However, this is the spoiler-free version of my usual reviews. Thus, you will all get the official synopsis from Crunchyroll instead. You can check that out below:

Around ten years ago, gates that connected our world to another dimension began to appear, leading to the rise of hunters who would traverse these gates to fight the magic beasts within. Sung Jinwoo, E-Rank hunter, is the weakest of them all.

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It”: The Good

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 "I'm Used to It" screenshot showing Sung Jin-woo with  determined look on his face.
Well, not good for our main character here.

I would say that there are multiple elements that contribute to this first episode being great. The first element is the story and worldbuilding. This first episode spends about the first sixth of its runtime basically introducing viewers to the world of Solo Leveling. All through some kind of massive conflict on an unnamed island between human and monsters. Not to mention revealing that this apparent fantasy world takes place in the modern world. Almost making it an urban fantasy in some respects, with the dungeons giving it some elements of isekai. It creates a fascinating world to set the story in.

The animation is the other great element of this first episode. A-1 Pictures did a pretty good job with the animation quality, especially during the battle scenes. Honestly, the battle scenes do look great, with smooth animations and very graphic depictions of violence. You can definitely tell where A-1 Pictures chose to put more of the budget into here.

Honestly though, what’s making this first episode great is Sung Jin-woo himself. He’s a pretty likable main character, which is a very good thing. Whether a main character is likable or not can make or break a show. Fortunately, Sung Jin-woo is very much making this anime. Right off the bat, he gets off to a good start by being a polite and friendly young man. Even better though, he follows up on that by revealing his reasons for wanting to be a Hunter. It makes his risky decisions much more understandable when you find out that he has to take care of his surviving family members. It gives Sung Jin-woo a nice start, and we’ll be eager to see more of him next episode.

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 “I’m Used to It”: The Bad

Solo Leveling Ep. 1 "I'm Used to It" screenshot showing a terrified Sung Jin-woo and Lee Joo-hee.
I would tell them to run, but there’s nowhere to run.

My only complaint about Solo Leveling has nothing to do with this episode or this anime. It’s just that in my experience with shonen anime like this one, they tend to devolve into action and nothing but. A lot of shonen anime seem to fall into this trap, neglecting story and character development in favor of endless battle scenes. I honestly hope Solo Leveling does not fall into this trap later in the show.