The Four Cardinal Heroes are a group of ordinary men from modern-day Japan summoned to the kingdom of Melromarc to become its saviors. Melromarc is a country plagued by the Waves of Catastrophe that have repeatedly ravaged the land and brought disaster to its citizens for centuries. The four heroes are respectively bestowed a sword, spear, bow, and shield to vanquish these Waves. Naofumi Iwatani, an otaku, becomes cursed with the fate of being the "Shield Hero." Armed with only a measly shield, Naofumi is belittled and ridiculed by his fellow heroes and the kingdom's people due to his weak offensive capabilities and lackluster personality.
When the heroes are provided with resources and comrades to train with, Naofumi sets out with the only person willing to train alongside him, Malty Melromarc. He is soon betrayed by her, however, and becomes falsely accused of taking advantage of her. Naofumi then becomes heavily discriminated against and hated by the people of Melromarc for something he didn't do. With a raging storm of hurt and mistrust in his heart, Naofumi begins his journey of strengthening himself and his reputation. Further along however, the difficulty of being on his own sets in, so Naofumi buys a demi-human slave on the verge of death named Raphtalia to accompany him on his travels.
As the Waves approach the kingdom, Naofumi and Raphtalia must fight for the survival of the kingdom and protect the people of Melromarc from their ill-fated future.
#1: "Kimi no Namae (きみの名前)" by Chiai Fujikawa (藤川千愛) (eps 2-3, 5-12) #2: "Falling Through Starlight" by Asami Seto (ep 4) #3: "Atashi ga Tonari ni Iru Uchi ni (あたしが隣にいるうちに)" by Chiai Fujikawa (藤川千愛) (eps 13-20, 22-24)
Tate no Yuusha is a thundering disappointment for many fans of the isekai genre. And for those who would not have labeled themselves as such, Tate no Yuusha is a testament to their dislike or indifference, being yet another mediocre, soulless title lurching and tossing throughout a tired genre that is swiftly approaching its death throes. In truth, Tate no Yuusha doesn't please much of anybody.
If there is a reason Tate no Yuusha ever stood out in the first place, it is because of the protagonist and the appalling situation he is soon forced into. Though isekai anime taking a turn for the dark
are hardly rare, the abject betrayal Naofumi faces is not the treatment one would expect for someone abducted from their world and supposedly re-branded a "hero". The corrupt, contemptible society he is forced to fight for is not what you might anticipate from a genre where the setting— the fantasy— is meant to be an escape from the monotony of the real world. Instead, it turns out things in Naofumi's new world may actually be far worse than they ever were in his old one. A fantasy turned nightmare.
The whole 'twist', I suppose— if you could call it that— was a success in the eyes of many. It turned another forgettable, run-of-the-mill anime into something a bit more engaging, and gave many a reason for the viewer to empathise with Naofumi, through joining in his hatred for society and his potential quest for revenge. Whether these themes were ever fully realised, or even handled well, may well be a different story entirely.
See, Tate no Yuusha never actually takes things further than 'corruption sucks' and 'I'm mad— grr, watch my flames of anger.' The king is inherently evil because of a small grudge. Myne is verminous scum merely because... wait, there is no actual reason. Motoyasu, the spear hero, is a gullible idiot who likes to womanise and that is all there is behind his punch-able little face. Raphtalia is a benevolent mary sue who will not utter or even think a bad thought, her almost immediately (and incomprehensibly) falling in love with Naofumi, thus existing as waifu material for those who like to rescue their damsels from distress. Filo is pure fodder for lolicons and a relentless annoyance for anyone who is not. The list goes on. The only one who still has potential is the Queen, but considering the path the show has trodden thus far, it would be illogical to assume a second season would fare her any better. Tate no Yuusha's characters, though they may initially show promise, are quickly cast aside and made merely to be fanservice or vehicles to drive Naofumi's hatred along, however the writer's whims may fancy.
Oh, you wanted to see the anime tackle issues surrounding the slave trade, and Naofumi's moral dilemma of having taken part in an evil system yet saved someone as a direct result of it? Sorry - I have disappointing news. Did you want to see the politics, heck, even geography of the world explored with more than two lines of dialogue? Nope. Not here. Everything in Tate no Yuusha is surface level. It has the facade of maturity, but in reality is about as mature as a 1999 Slipknot album.
Any fight scene, no matter how overwhelming and powerful the opponent, can, and will, be prematurely ended by Naofumi's anger turning him Super Saiyan. Whereas anime like JoJo will carefully construct the fights to be based on tactics and cleverness, Tate no Yuusha presents nothing except power levels. You can fast-forward through any climactic fight scene and have lost little to nothing of value, as all you ever need to know is that Naofumi got angry and won. Sure, there is a degree of self-awareness throughout the show, with characters remarking on how this power is essentially him "cheating". But when Naofumi attributes all his success to hard work and yet wins merely because of said mysterious power randomly appearing at the most convenient time— essentially a deus ex machina— you have to wonder what the hell he is even talking about.
If all you ever wanted to see was Naofumi take revenge against those who wronged him, then, I am sorry to say, but even that will lead you to much disappointment. On numerous occasions, when he is on the cusp of enacting his long-sought revenge, he takes the high road and proselytizes about how killing a bad person makes you just as bad as them, or whatever— the usual tripe you hear from lame, holier-than-thou anime protagonists. Since when was Naofumi ever supposed to be an idealistic person? Hadn't he lost all his faith in society, or even in morality itself after what he had experienced? Not only does this betray fans of the first several episodes, but it makes his character an inconsistent and incomprehensible mess. He plays hero when it is supposed to sound cool, and villain when it is convenient for him. By the time there actually is some sort of retribution for those who wronged him, it is too little too late, a thumbs-up, an "okay, cool" rather than anything deserving of applause. Tate no Yuusha surely and steadily loses its steam as the episodes blindly trudge by, and once its primary theme is lazily cast aside, there is no reason to care about what happens to a world where saving the day and being a 'hero' never even meant anything in the first place.
So there you go. Another trite isekai anime, popular mostly for its gimmicky nature, masquerading itself as mature merely because it has themes that are darker than is usual. Those who aren't fans of the genre will most likely have trusted their instincts and avoided this show, anyway, but for those who sit on the fence, and even for those who generally enjoy these sorts of shows, there is not much to be gained from Tate no Yuusha's feckless affairs. It makes me miss the flawed but ambitious Re:Zero, and Re:Zero is not an anime I had really imagined myself missing all that much.
And now I'm all out of words because I realise the next one of these— Arifureta— is down the corner, just a week's time away, with a premise that is almost word-for-word copy-paste of what is found in Tate no Yuusha.
Welcome to Shield Art Online, the latest popular trapped in a video game light novel adaptation. You’ve seen this show a dozen times before, but this the trashiest one so far. Not only is this dogshit a shameless loli-harem, but it is also a slavery harem, a power fantasy, and 100% incel approved.
Do people actually think The Rising of the Shield Hero is above other isekai harem fodder? Naofumi is yet again another blank slate protagonist who builds his harem by saving a bunch of lolis. Rather than developing any of them, the show just adds a new loli to avoid having to write
compelling characters. Naofumi is a nobody otaku who stays at his home all day—with perfect hair for some reason—then he gets sent to another world in the egregiously long 45-minute first episode. Why is he there? To save some video game fantasy world from being destroyed! Why did they choose him? Who cares! The writers certainly didn’t! Once he arrives, he notices a shield is stuck to his arm, not cool. Naofumi finds three other equally boring guys who were also sent to this world to help save it. The other heroes have much cooler weapons like a spear, a bow, and a sword. Unluckily he got the worst weapon, and the other three heroes look down on him for being so lame. It’s kind of hilarious watching them crap on him, in a cringy way.
You’ll find out soon enough this is one of those shows where EVERYONE shits on the weak protagonist except his harem, but watch out because he’s going to become a badass! It’s like this was written by a cringy fourteen-year-old boy who got bullied in high school, and now he just wants to show everyone how cool he is! Why couldn’t he have gone back to school and sucked it up like everyone else? Instead, he became an incel and wrote this garbage. Right from the very beginning, it’s obvious Naofumi will get everything a self-insert harem protagonist rightfully deserves. Magic powers that defy logic, waifus to fight over him, and more money than he’ll ever be able to spend.
All of this sounds great for our plucky personality-less main character, but reaching the ultimate generic isekai protagonist status would prove to be slightly challenging. No one wants to join poor Shield Hero’s party because he’s just so lame. Fortunately for him, there is someone who volunteers! Malty, the princess of the kingdom that summoned the four heroes offers her help. Is it too good to be true? No! It can’t possibly be… oh. Then she falsely accuses him of rape and steals all his stuff. Anyone with a fully functioning brain can see this ‘twist’ coming from a mile away. Anyways, it happened and it was the worst catalyst for a lone wolf plot I have ever seen in an anime. Naofumi is exiled, stripped of his money, and his reputation is tarnished. This is an incredibly lazily written motivation for Naofumi to seek revenge, but it’s what we have to work with. Malty’s deception is enough to make any guy a misogynist. I can only imagine how bitter the writer was because no girl ever wanted his D, poor lonely incel. There’s no other plausible reason why he would write a story as contrived as this one. Malty, the king, and the other three heroes are the villains, some described them as ‘true to real life’ but their motivations are never defined. Malty was evil for the sake of being evil, which doesn’t bode well for an antagonist. Naofumi doesn’t question why she did what she did and he decides to get revenge anyway.
The whole conflict speaks "Incel-bait: The Animation" to me. You are oppressed by society because you don’t look like a chad and your dick is too small. Get over it. There’s no subtlety, ambiguity, or nuance to this message, the author is just an incel who wanted to write a revenge story for babies. The conflict is stagnant for most of the show while Naofumi solves trivial problems to grind for XP (which does not matter at all in the end), then when it is eventually addressed the execution is very underwhelming. There’s no satisfaction to be had from the revenge plot. Unless you love torture porn—complete with women suffering and ahegao faces—then you’ll be sorely disappointed. The Rising of the Shield Hero grows tired its plotlines like an impatient child, rewriting its plot, setting, and conflicts at the drop of a hat. After Malty’s ‘heartbreaking’ betrayal, Naofumi became an edgy, brooding, lone-wolf he was always destined to be. Anyone who knew his name would avoid him. Consequently, he strolls on down to the slave market to pick up a new party member and potential love interest. I do not need to explain why owning another person is wrong. However, in the context of the story, it is a pointless addition that serves nothing but deplorable fetishistic slave fantasies.
The second episode is aptly titled “The Slave Girl” as if it was a confession of guilt from the show’s producer. Naofumi picks up a cute raccoon girl, a battered slave. Anyone who praised Shield Hero early on couldn’t put into words why other than “cute raccoon girl” and “Naofumi reminds me of myself.” Wow, a slave owner with no personality is just so unfathomably relatable. After episode five, the slave girl’s personality stopped developing entirely. Naofumi named her Raphtalia, then he trained her by using the slavery game mechanic to shock her whenever she refused his orders. Slowly but surely he grooms her to become a killing machine like any great father would, and by the end of the episode, she is suddenly a fully grown adult woman after a few in-game days pass. OKAY. Putting aside this giant leap in logic and unexplained mechanic, she is now an adult with the mind of a child. Raphtalia tries making romantic advances towards Naofumi, but he acts too braindead to perceive anything as sexual, so their relationship never progresses. When she talks to Naofumi he could be replaced by a plank of wood and there would be no difference. She struts in front of him in a skimpy bathing suit in the extremely important beach episode, and even then he stares vacuously. He just thinks how effective the swimsuit will be in combat. Later on, Naofumi buys another slave, this one was an egg, eventually becoming a huge bird named Filo. She’s also a loli, naked right when she is introduced. Her only purpose in the story is to fight for Naofumi in combat, she also fights for Naofumi's love against Raphtalia and the other waifus. She is less than one year old, and the rest of his harem is underage girls. Could this get any more revolting?
The story goes in circles; people accuse the Shield Hero of being a rapist and owning slaves, then the cycle repeats itself over and over. First, it’s princess Malty, then it’s the King, then it’s the church, then all of the cardinal heroes accuse him. These allegations don’t ever get to Naofumi because he is more or less a passive protagonist. He is either told to do something, like stopping the waves of chaos to save the world, save helpless villagers, or circumstances push him to do something. He doesn’t grow at all from any conflict. The rest of the cast is even worse written than he is. Throughout the story, character motivations get entirely rewritten with no build up, which makes their previous actions seem nonsensical in retrospect. Powerful weapons, new powers, and motivations are retconned into the story to increase the stakes. The retcons are so distractingly stupid they lessen the effect of the action scenes. At the best of times, the fight choreography is average and it only gets worse. If you love janky, hideous CGI you will love the action scenes in this show. Later on, low detail CGI is used in any scene Kinema Citrus can shove it into. Guards, intimidating monsters, grand attacks, background characters are all CGI. Any grand action setpiece you would expect to be in animated beautifully in 2D is rendered in hideous CGI. The only thing the visuals have going for them is the character designs, and even those are generic and uninspired. Overall it is nothing special to look at. With a drab color palette of browns, faded greens, and peachy orange it looks quite bland.
The fantastic composer Kevin Pelkin was brought on by Kinema Citrus again, and his soundtrack is easily the best part of the show. However, it doesn’t live up to the highs of his work on Made in Abyss. It is more soft strings and mellow tunes you’d expect from atmospheric series, which Shield Hero is certainly not. The OST is used frequently to build tension in place of, you know, writing, and to that extent, it is not very effective. Forcing the composer to carry the weight of a crappy script just undermines his talent, Pelkin deserves better than this. Both openings were pretty terrible, sorry MADKID. I would say I liked the ending songs if I could remember them, but they both were so average and forgettable.
Essentially The Rising of the Shield Hero is about an incel who doesn’t care about anything but showing everyone how better he is than them. The themes are slavery apologia, misogyny, and women's rights. Nevermind scratch that last one. Everyone hates him, they misunderstand him, they underestimate him. It is his goal to prove he is far better than they thought, for them to know how great of a person he is, and to eventually love him. Simply put, this is an incel power-fantasy. Flawed people make good characters and Naofumi is very flawed. However, his many flaws are never explored. People judge him, but they don’t criticize him. Raphtalia is groomed to respect him, she loves him before even meeting him, there is never any hint of criticism of his treatment of her. She even looks back on him abusing her nostalgically in later episodes. His misogyny is implied, and understandable. However, it is ignored and consequently, it never adds any depth to him.
Light novel writers churn out stories like Tate no Yuusha no Nariagari all the time. Unless you are a diehard fan of wish-fulfillment isekai anime, there is nothing that makes this one worth watching. In spite of the haphazard inclusion of slavery and false rape allegations, this series is unavoidably garbage. Whether you find the controversial themes offensive or inconsequential, I cannot recommend this to anyone. Inside and out Shield Hero is cliched, predictable, and ugly. The archetypal characters have barely enough personality to make their monotonous journey through the barebones fantasy setting watchable. Once the art and writing quality decline far past mediocre, it becomes irredeemably awful.
We've come to a point in the anime industry where isekai anime are immediately judged just for being isekai. Due to the apparent "overuse" and "unoriginality" of the genre, some individuals will make a big deal about it or not even watch an anime at all simply because of the genre, even if the isekai elements have essentially no bearing on the narrative whatsoever, as is the case with The Rising of the Shield Hero. Yes, Shield Hero is an isekai, but don't let that blind you from seeing the true themes and merit of this show. At its core, this is an anime all
about friendship, perseverance, and what it means to truly be a hero.
It's also a cleverly disguised loli harem series too. Crazy, right? But I'll save explaining this shocking revelation for later. Oh, the suspense!
I know I just started off by saying not to judge Shield Hero just for being an isekai, but it honestly does have a stereotypical fantasy setting. Heroes are summoned to another world that's suspiciously designed just like a video game with the task of saving the world from monsters. Yeah, I've totally never heard that one before! But what really matters is execution, which Shield Hero completely nails. After starting off quite harmless with everything going fine and dandy for Naofumi, the recently dubbed shield hero, things take a dark turn after one of the most controversial occurrences in modern anime goes down. He gets accused of rape. Because of the current state of our real world society, the false rape allocations against Naofumi by the bitchy princess Malty struck a cord with many people and caused lots of heated debates on the topic. I say keep reality and fiction separate, and I personally think that this was a great way to swiftly introduce the central conflict between Naofumi and basically everyone else. Everyone essentially berates and shames the poor dude, leaving him a little broken on the inside. In the span of a single episode, Malty, the king, and the other three heroes summoned to the world are set up to be extremely hatable characters, and it just works. It's honestly as good of an introduction as you can get in a fantasy series.
What I love the most about Naofumi is how he deals with the crappy lot in life he ended up with. He transforms from a happy go lucky protagonist to a more cynical guy who only seems to care about personal gain, and I feel like this is a pretty realistic shift considering what he's gone through. He even ends up purchasing a demi-human slave! I thought only bad guys did that! This of course is where the anime starts to really get good, because of how great Shield Hero portrays the relationship between Naofumi and his slave racoon loli Raphtalia. You can tell that Raphtalia has gone through some pretty messed up stuff, which the anime touches on in later episodes. It seems like Naofumi treats her a bit harshly at first, but you can quickly tell that he's actually giving her some tough love and training her to become stronger and to get over her fears. Heck, she even upgrades from a loli to a woman, that's how effective his training is! And then after Naofumi gets further put down by the kingdom, it's Raphtalia who saves him from completely falling into despair. That's why their relationship is great, because they both help and in some ways even complete each other. Plus it's handled in a completely unconventional way too. You'd think that Naofumi would release Raphtalia from being a slave, but neither of them in fact want that, to the shock of the Spear Hero and others. It's little things like this that make Rising of the Shield Hero really stand out.
One thing that could weaken your interest in this anime would be how quickly you get annoyed at the constant degradation of Naofumi, because his defamation continues far after Raphtalia saves him, and is the primary conflict in the anime. This isn't a show about a hero fighting against monsters. No, this is an anime about a man fighting against the people who should be his allies. I've seen people say that they've gotten exasperated over how much Naofumi gets put down, but I'd have to disagree. This anime makes you really dislike characters who shouldn't actually be villains at all, yet are set up like it due to their poor choices and actions. And shouldn't a good antagonist be someone that viewers are meant to despise and root for the protagonist to overcome? Shield Hero does just that, and I think that the central conflict is handled and eventually resolved quite well.
Of course, there's more going on than just that. Throughout his journey Naofumi encounters two more loli party members. Lucky him. The first is Filo, a cleverly named filolial who Naofumi basically raised from birth after purchasing her as an egg. She has two forms. The first is her angel-like loli form, and the second is her super fluffy giant chicken-like beast form. What can I say, she's absolutely adorable in both forms. She does lots of useful things like draw the wagon, beat up cgi monsters, and kick the Spear Hero in his balls. Also, like Raphtalia, Filo develops a strong bond with Naofumi in which they build off of each other to further evolve as characters. Filo also develops a cute rivalry with Raphtalia over Naofumi's affections, which is pretty humorous. The final girl to complete Naofumi's holy loli triad is Melty, the younger sister of Malty and heir to the throne. Because Naofumi has the most hostility towards royalty, his interaction with Melty sets up an interesting dynamic. They gradually learn to trust and rely on each other, and by consistently helping Melty, we can further see just how much of a hero Naofumi really is. Melty also has my favorite character design in the show, and despite being nobility, Melty's cuteness just makes my heart melt.
These characters travel together cleaning up the messes of the other three so called heroes all while being defamed and hunted by the government. Yet despite his annoyance at and mistrust of everyone outside of his party, Naofumi keeps persevering, which is quite admirable. Though you know what I think gives him strength? The lolis. You may have noticed that all three main girls are lolis. "B-But Raphtalia isn't!" Wrong! She may have evolved from her loli body, but she says that she still has the age and mentality of a child. This is a clever technique by the writer to hide the fact that Naofumi has obtained a loli harem. And just like your typical harem, all three girls have a thing for Naofumi and go all blushy blush when they're around him. And just like a harem protagonist, Naofumi seems completely oblivious to their advances. The author knew that he'd be labeled a degenerate for making a loli harem series, so he masqueraded his fantasy as an isekai anime. It's simply brilliant honestly. Or maybe I'm just completely wrong. Yeah, it's probably the latter...but you never know...
Madkid was asked to RISE to the occasion and perform both opening theme songs. To be honest, my FAITH in their ability to deliver quality music wasn't too high since I'm personally not a big fan of their style, but they did a good job here.
Yes, the show does have its share of flaws. For one, I do feel like episode 21 should have been the season finale, since there was a transition of arcs after it, which to me was a pretty odd design choice considering that the anime only had a few more episodes left. Shield Hero definitely has its share of technical issues as well. In some cases character designs and movements just looked a little sloppy. And the cgi used on some of the creatures just didn't look that good.
The Rising of the Shield Hero has a great narrative that touches upon themes that lesser anime in the genre don't even bother to mention. You know, a lot of isekai protagonists tend to act like the three cardinal heroes. They're ecstatic about living in a fantasy world and think everything revolves around them. But Naofumi is different. He keeps getting back up after getting knocked down. He may seem like he takes advantage of others, but he always has everyone's best interests at heart. He genuinely cares about his party. And even if he doesn't get any appreciation for his good deeds, he still always does the right thing. And that's what makes this shield bro a true hero.
Who are we? Every person ever. And what do we want? Throw shit at Naofumi. And when do we want it? Every second, non-stop, 247.
Modern problems require modern solutions. If society humiliates you, lets you down, you get accused of crimes you didn't commit, the general public turns against you, the game is rigged, system corrupted, you are bullied, isolated and alone, you see the worst in people and proceed to turn against the world and enter a safety mode where you become something of the sort of a "cynical little animal." Or that's what I would do.... unless... there was a cute animal-eared
waifu and rare-breed loli bird eating up all the negative feelings, ensuring I get healed, fed and mutually respected. This is the life of Naofumi, the shield hero, our main character -- and, unlike most isekai Jesuses, he is not "a big deal." After experiencing the worst, he relies on the worst, buys the cheapest slave he can get and, just like that, their adventure in this world where royalties are meanie wienies, double standards a way of life and the slaver dude the greatest guy -- begins!
It's not hard to point out where this show's weaknesses are. The story events are insignificant filler, the isekai core plot hardly more than an excuse for the series, the side-characters solely exist to put our main lead in this unjustified situation where he is treated like garbage, most of the "bad things" have no other purpose in the series than to provoke the audience with injustice; the opposing characters' ignorance is pushed to such extents that when their development finally starts, it is done in a manner that does not convince. The change does not come from within the characters but from the outside, entirely relying on the will of the author. in fact, it is so extreme that it starts to feel like it's driven by anti-government, anti-society and anti-religion agenda. The female casting is waifubaiting and the adventure side could entirely be labelled as wish-fulfillment. It's easy to point the finger here and go "this is the type of shite I am supposed to hate in anime." Finding these flaws annoying and letting them ruin the viewing experience and kill the entertainment value is understandable. But even after all of its issues, the show is not exclusively bad, but has some strong pros as well. However, there where the cons are practically self-explanatory and easy to list down, the pros don't stand out nearly as strongly.
First of all, Tate no Yuusha has charm. Anyone can write a coherent backstory which leads to being isekai'd, and it certainly is not much harder to make the side character seem more like decent humans by extending the storyboard with anti-shield-wielder backstory that explains why they are so deeply hated, and how it's all "just politics". These problems could be countered, but that would be side-tracking, like trying to prove that it can be done for the sake of it. But charm is something that is much harder to accomplish, and it was achieved partly because the main focus was most of the time put on Naofumi's party, which is the most relevant thing there is. Secondly, Naofumi is a great character. On the surface level, it's easy to judge him or not even give him a chance, but below the first layer lays much more. He is a genuinely nice guy who has to mask his core personality to survive due to other people being unreasonable. He isn't your average gary stu isekai Jesus who is nice just because he cannot be anything else. Naofumi chooses to help people and decides where his own adventure leads him while, at the same time, ensuring his kindness is not taken for granted so that he won't be used. How many isekai series are there where the character has to take measures and alter his own personality for his own well-being? There aren't. Almost every single one of them rely on being so overpowered that their measures are bs at best, trying to hide the fact that they could destroy the world by simply farting too hard. He doesn't even seek revenge because that would simply make him feel bad. And what is this sentence if not 5000 years worth of human philosophy summed up? Finally a character who chooses this path not because it is "the right thing to do and according to muh morals" but because it benefits him the most. One can easily claim he is the same as your typical isegary, but he has awareness and reasoning that makes perfect sense, and that is what sets him apart from nearly all of the other alternatives. And thirdly, from the main cast department (read;waifu squadron), this is the purest isekai series I have seen. It's not driven by lust and sexual remarks, but by characters who have something decent going on under their skin.../fur/feathers. There is no romantic subplot or sexual tension to keep the audience interested with fanservice or useless feelings pondering. It's just a dude getting comfy'd by bunch of lolis. And with this, I speak of yours truly/the viewer.
There is not much more that I have to say. It's isekai, so it's okay to dislike it, of course, but it has heart. It's definitely not a soulless piece, but a genuine anime that has lots of good things going on in the cute, comfy and main cast departments. I almost never felt like it was fake as so many modern anime is, outside two occurrences: 1) episodes 15-17 or so where the 4th loli appeared and I absolutely hated her, and 2) the last few episode where the show has clearly started to lose its way. While the overall pace can be criticized, the episodic flow is smooth, the production is stellar, directing follows a clear vision with consistency, and there is nothing that ruins the fun or makes the series worse from these parts. Outside some CGI, the art rarely stands out for negative reasons. This time, I hardly found the CGI monsters to be a problem either, I acknowledge it exists, end of story. I highly enjoyed watching this series and it deserves some praise from me. It's not the smartest anime you can see, but it is a smart production with nearly as smart execution. I much rather recommend giving it a try than advice not to.