Failure Frame: I Became the Strongest and Annihilated Everything With Low-Level Spells – Episode 1

By: ThatNerdyBoliviane July 5, 20240 Comments
Mimori looks confused at the goddess explanation

Content Warning: fan service and child abuse

What’s it about? A goddess from another world summons high school students to serve as heroes.  While a majority of them display amazing skills, unfortunately Touka Mimori’s abilities are the weakest.  He’s thrown into a dungeon to die, but he slowly realizes his powers function differently and sets out to get revenge against everyone who has wronged him.

Based on the trailers, I was fully expecting Mimori to be an over-exaggerated character with an excessive evil laugh to boost.  I’m pleasantly surprised that there’s far more nuanced to him than the usual overpowered male protagonists I’ve seen in the genre.  Mimori was severely abused by his parents and blamed himself for the breakdown of his family.  He thought if he acted like a “harmless person” then his parents would stop their abuse, but that didn’t change his reality.  As a result, Mimori is primarily known for keeping his head down and is basically considered “air” by his fellow classmates.  Despite his coping mechanisms he tries to be kind to everyone around him knowing full well he’ll receive major scrutiny later on.

The honest depiction of child abuse pulled at my heart strings and it’s easy for me to feel empathy towards Mimori.  Unfortunately, that is about the only positive thing I can say about this premiere.  Everything else is straight out of every male-centered revenge fantasy series we’ve seen every season.  Almost all of Mimori’s classmates are cartoonishly evil. The show doesn’t beat around the bush in depicting how horrible the goddess and his classmates are for quickly condemning him to death after his weak powers were revealed. 

Mimori child version talking to himself in an illusion
If nothing else, Mimori’s backstory is hella sad.

The goddess is obviously sketchy, but any real chance to make her more interesting is thwarted by the camera’s focus on her voluptuous breasts and body.  I don’t expect the male gaze to disappear anytime soon, especially after the post credit scene revealed a very naked silhouette of an elf girl — probably the love interest.   

The only true gem in this episode is Mimori’s introspection about his life and feelings, even that is subject to immediately being forgotten in his eventual journey to become an overpowered protagonist (I’m looking at you Solo Leveling).  I’ve reviewed countless shows like this over the years, and it’s frustrating how much potential is thrown down the drain for some of these shows.  It’s easy to imagine what could’ve been if some of these stories were in the hands of competent writers, but alas, Failure Frame is just another “edgy” isekai anime that’ll be forgotten in a few days.  

Mimori's classmates laughing at him
I’m telling you they are quality people!!

I pray for the day that stories about overpowered male protagonists take a break for at least one season for the sake of my sanity.  I’ll have to pass on this one folks.  For now you are better off watching something like Reborn as a Vending Machine

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