The Isekai genre is extremely popular, but it's also one of the most hated genres for non-fans. I can understand some of the hate, but as a fan, I thought a lot about the appeal of these stories and the reasons most of Isekai anime feel like "generic content."
This is a reply to a video called "Why Are Isekai So Popular? The Sad Truth" by Cofku.
The video had many fair points from someone who doesn't enjoy this genre of anime, but understands the appeal. These stories are Power Fantasies, and offer a type of escape from reality you can't find anywhere else.
So I was glad while watching the video, and this was my comment.
Finally, someone that understands that these clone main characters aren't copies of each other. A lot of them experience the same things, but all of them react differently.
Even if a few of them are shaped by their past lives, (something that I wish more of them had,) all of them are shaped by their experiences in the story.
Kirito: The most cloned Light Novel protagonist!
I think one of the problems with Isekai, is that most of them are hard to adapt well in anime form.
Unlike Manga, the writers of Light Novel are only limited by their descriptiveness so they can get crazy with the details. Their release has more pages than a manga release so they can get patient with the pacing.
Anime details are costly, and uneven pacing is dangerous in that medium. The anime has to cut stuff, and when considering the cost it's easier to cut the finer details that make these novels unique in the genre.
(Imagine Mushoku Tensei anime without all the budget spent on world building... Wait that's just ReZero... Imagine both without the budget spent on the emotional scenes.)
That way of adaptation leads characters to have more of their Archetype traits and less of their unique ones... It's even worse when the anime cuts everything but the harem from an isekai novel (like the way Smartphone Isekai was adapted) because it's the cheapest & most immediately appealing part of the story.
- Kirito's image is taken from the Wiki.
P.S: If you liked my take on Isekai you might also like my story "The NFT Isekai: In Another World With My NFTs."