Solo Leveling – Season 1 Episode 8 Recap & Review

This Is Frustrating 

Episode 8 of Solo Leveling begins with Sung visiting his mother and reflecting on his experience with the S-Rank Dungeon. He feels he needs to get stronger before he returns to collect the Elixir of Life’s ingredients. Later, Sung meets up with Yoo at the cafe and tells him he’d like to accept his 19 C-Rank raids offer. However, Sung only wants Yoo and him to clear the C-Rank dungeons.

Yoo’s distraught by Sung’s stipulation since C-Rank dungeons require eight team members. Sung says they can hire folks, similarly to what Hwang did. Although Yoo is skeptical about it all, Sung entices him to comply. Yoo promises to arrange some gates and recruit folks in the meantime. Elsewhere, we see Hae-in undergoing some training.

A man named Yoon confronts Hae-in about something. Then, we observe Yoo and his father conversing in a car. Yoo’s father reflects on life before and after the gates and dungeons appeared. After that spiel, his father shares insight into the Hunter’s Association and their order of operations regarding hunters, guilds, and dungeons.

While discussing guilds, Yoo’s father name-drops the five most commendable and largest guilds. He says they hold a monopoly over dungeon-related profits and he finds that unappealing. He hopes the guild he forms with his son will help him accomplish his goals. Meanwhile, we observe Sung attempting to surpass his requirements for his daily quest.

Sung opens his Player Log and notices it’s not counting his extra work anymore. Sung’s upset with this fact because he was hoping to obtain something of value from this activity. Sung checks one of his regular random loot boxes to see if it’ll give him something worthwhile. 

Unfortunately, he only receives a used Bingo card. Sung wanders the city, contemplating things that’ll help him level up efficiently. Sung receives an email from the Hunter’s Association. They’re seeking some hunters for a D-Rank excursion. Although Sung prefers something better, he’s willing to accept the task. 

We cut to Song and his student discussing their current sparring session. Song receives an emergency summons and his student questions him about retirement. Although Song understands his student’s sentiments, he says he still wants to contribute to society. Later, Baek visits Choi. Baek is enraged that Choi made him participate in an interview that was meant for Choi.

Choi changes the subject and informs Baek about Yoo’s father’s guild-building developments. Baek says he knew about Yoo’s father’s plans and wants to know why Choi called him to his office. Before we’d receive an answer, we cut to Joohee and her mother chatting over the phone. Joohee’s mother insists that Joohee come home and help with the family business. 

Joohee tells her mother to let her make her own decisions and ends the phone call. Joohee reflects on Sung’s activities and wants to try harder. She receives a similar message Sung received from the Hunter Association regarding the D-Rank mission. Hae-in visits Choi in his office and tells him she received a business opportunity from a Yoojin Construction scout. 

Hae-in tells Choi she declined their “guildmaster” offer but wants Choi to elaborate on what he and Baek discussed. We cut to Baek in a bar, reflecting on his conversation with Choi about the failed raid at Jeju Island. Choi is upset that society’s forgotten the disaster that occurred on the island, unlike himself. He hopes to clear the island in the future and reveals why he needs everyone on the same page. 

After that, we see Song reunite with Sung. The two catch up briefly and inform each other about their current plans involving the D-Rank dungeon summons. Then, Sung and Song notice that Joohee, Park, and another individual are participating in this dungeon. Before they catch up, several Hunter Association affiliates and prisoners arrive. 

One of the associates explains the C-Rank prisoners will be joining our heroes on their dungeon expedition as substitutes. She explains they’re short on staff and promises these prisoner hunters will be on their best behavior. Additionally, the associate says they’ll be accompanied by an inspector named Kang. 

Kang introduces himself to everyone and promises that he’ll keep the prisoners in check. Song asks Sung if he can serve as their leader, despite what happened during their double-dungeon expedition. Sung says he’s okay with it. The episode closes with Song leading our heroes into the dungeon.

The Episode Review

After all the action-packed chapters we’ve received, Solo Leveling decided to pull things back a bit on the action side of things. Instead, this chapter gives a slew of intel about this anime’s world and its supporting cast’s state of affairs. From Guildmaster Choi’s plans to Yoo’s father’s guild-building affairs, some will find these new details interesting and worth discussing. 

On the other hand, Solo Leveling could’ve presented these details to audiences in a better manner. The constant perspective shifts were somewhat jarring, making important developments hard to digest and follow at points. If the episode had taken its time to flesh out certain elements, it’d make matters easier to understand.

Nevertheless, it’s nice to receive some updates on Solo Leveling’s supporting cast. While Sung’s been a pleasure to follow every week, the other characters could use some spotlight too. Having said that, I’m excited to see Song and Joohee accompany Sung on this D-Rank dungeon expedition. It’s been a while since they last teamed up. 

On that note, it’ll be interesting to see if Sung will demonstrate his “Player” feats in front of them. Simultaneously, it’ll be intriguing if he tries his hardest to conceal his “Player” capabilities, too. Overall, next week’s chapter is shaping up to be a worthwhile affair. 

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You can read our Season 1 Review of Solo Leveling here!


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