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EP. REVIEW: The Rising of The Shield Hero


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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1913
PostPosted: Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:56 am Reply with quote
What do you mean de-gozaru ?

I like that they kept a scene that is only important when the series ends... the fruit eating scene obviously.

Also, the towel scene was changed to the bikini scene, it was to be expected and I think only the WN did the towel, spoiler that is not a spoiler becuase the scene got changed for the anime : spoiler[ the bikini scene we got there plays differently in the WN, there raftalia goes to naofumi's room wearing only a towel, then she takes it off to show her body to naofumi , trying to seduce him as being told by another female adventurer; naofumi looks and aproves... in a total no sexual way and praising her for the results of her training ]
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Gina Szanboti



Joined: 03 Aug 2008
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:53 pm Reply with quote
As I said back in March when Glass first showed up, I was getting major Bokurano vibes. This episode just reinforced that.

I like l'Arc a lot though, much better than Naofumi, that's for sure. If there can be only one survivor, I'm rooting for him.
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johan.eriksson.9003



Joined: 27 Oct 2014
Posts: 209
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 10:05 am Reply with quote
TirMcDohl wrote:

I hope having watched more of the show you can realize how totally off-base your interpretation here was. Although, truth be told, it should have been plainly obvious after only a few episodes.

Shield Hero actually IS a message show. And it's message is unequivocally a progressive one. Anyone who told you to not get caught up in the slavery part because it isn't very relevant was completely wrong. Slavery is very relevant to the story and it is clearly meant to tie to the real world history of slavery.

In Melromarc Demi-humans are an oppressed race of people who are often enslaved by humans. The government openly embraces a human-supremacist system along with the practice of slavery, and there is clear bigoted animus towards Demi-humans that enter human only spaces (the castle, the tavern, etc.). It is a clear parallel to the race-based slavery in the Americas and even the Jim-Crow segregation that followed.

And what is Naofumi's role in all this? He rescues a slave girl on the verge of death. Trains her to fight. And eventually helps her exact revenge on a savagely racist, slave owning noble, thus freeing all the Demi-humans held there in bondage. Holy Black Socialist Jesus, the man lead a mini slave revolt ffs.

Of the two Demi-human nations Stivlet worships the Shield Hero, and the other is called Shieldfreeden. Raphtalia mentions her parents saying that the Shield Hero was the only one that treated Demi-humans kindly. The show doesn't expect you to sympathize with a racist slaver. It expects you sympathize with the only hero fighting for the poor and the oppressed, the one who straight up said he despises people who abuse their power for personal gain, the one who frees slaves.

The king says he is afraid of the Shield and the Demi-humans doing whatever they want again. A big part of the Shield's persecution is that Melromarc is a racist, human supremacist country that likely views the actions of previous and the current Shield Hero as threats to the existing social order - because he has historically and currently taken up the cause of the Demi-humans at various times.

The Shield's experience of this persecution in turn likely leads him to be more sympathetic to the plight of the Demi-humans, though that is a bit of my own conjecture.

In any case it seems like all this gets ignored by people who get too hung up on the use of the slave crest in the first episodes. But remember, Abolitionists used to buy slaves in order to grant them their freedom. When living under such an oppressive system it is sometimes necessary to use that system's own tools against it. Yes, Naofumi bought Raphtalia as a slave and had a slave crest placed on her. But he never USED that crest except at one point when it was necessary to save both of their lives. And he never treated her as a slave.

The argument could be made that he didn't grant her freedom voluntarily and that he should have done so. The problem is, how? He didn't know anything about the crests let alone how to remove one. Now, I admit, I too was a little off put when Raphtalia chose to have the slave crest put back on, as it seemed to portray the master/slave relationship in a positive light. Aside from the abundance of moments which portray Demi-human slavery in a very negative way, there is actually a logical explanation for Raphtalia's decision: EXP.

I'm not 100% positive, but it seemed like Naofumi was only able to get EXP and level up from the enemies Raphtalia killed because of the slave pact. Without the ability to do this the entire team would have been greatly weakened. This isn't just an ends justify the means argument, they needed that power to fight the slave owning nobleman and free his slaves. The gun was probably the most important tool in the maintenance of chattel slavery. Does that mean a slave, given the chance, shouldn't use that tool to fight back against his own oppression?

This interpretation is supported by the fact that after this point the relationship between the two characters seems completely devoid of any master/slave dynamic. And Raphtalia's slave crest is never seen, let alone activated, ever again. The only function is has served since Raphtalia asked to reapply the seal is to allow her to share EXP with Naofumi. Naofumi then uses the strength from his level ups to protect Raphtalia and in at least one instance actively fight against the enslavement of Demi-humans.

So anyone still running around complaining about the depiction of slavery in the show isn't paying attention at all. Most likely they're too busy trying to make themselves look like the Shonen Jump Weekly of the week to even even that realize Social Justice is actually a major theme of the show.

If you wanna go on a righteous crusade against an anime, please devote your energies to anime's that actually deserve it. Like the horrifically racist and blatantly fascist piece of garbage known as Terra Formars.


1. I have not watched any more episodes. I made it quite clear that I think the show is boring trash, and nothing in the reviews or general buzz about the show makes me think it ever stopped being boring trash.

2. Literally nothing in that wall of text has anything to do with what I was criticizing the show for. You are grasping for straws, assuming you aren't just trolling.

3. What on earth made you think it was ok to drag up a post I made 4 months ago for this? Like, what possible value did you think you could get out of that instead of engaging with someone who is actually active on this forum? I'm sorry you wasted this entire season watching a shitty show and now feel like you need to defend your choice against someone who stopped engaging with it altogether months ago, but that isn't my problem. Stop bothering me.
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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1913
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 10:51 am Reply with quote
Lots of skipped content; was not expecting them to skip teh motoyasu and fue content, since it becomes very relevant for the future develoments. I guess that if they even go back to shiw show they can either resume calmira or just add it as a flashback/recap.
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Squidslinger



Joined: 01 Jul 2017
Posts: 74
PostPosted: Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:32 pm Reply with quote
maximilianjenus wrote:
Lots of skipped content; was not expecting them to skip teh motoyasu and fue content, since it becomes very relevant for the future develoments. I guess that if they even go back to shiw show they can either resume calmira or just add it as a flashback/recap.


Yep, it's been so rushed in spots.
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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1913
PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:58 am Reply with quote
Last Episode

I really loved that scene with motoyasu in the end ; it confirms my suspicions that this was (wn readers only) spoiler[another loop] and justifies why is the anime working so hard to make naofumi look so good spoiler[because motoyasu is manipulating people so that happens] Originally in the WN the one that saves rishia is motoyasu, that gives us a very important clue to him; but the one that saves rishia there is naofumi; this makes naofumi look better, first, by humanizing motoyasu less and second because originally rishia is "pushed" to naofumi (instead of him seeking for her help like the does in the anime) because motoyasu can't help her more.

But again, motoyasu's last dialogue pretty much saved the anime for me.

Ah yeah, someone asked who the golden goose was, minor spoilers because it has alreayd been hinted; mostly by having the slave merchant aproach naofumi and by having him sell raftalia to naofumi for so cheap, particularly as some people found it weird that the slave mechant values raftalia at hundreds of gold coins when he sees her teenager version yet he sold her for so little when it was better business to just heal her then have her level up.

spoiler[
The golden goose is the queen; she has been helping naofumi from the shadows (pun intended) she paid the slave merchant the real price for raftalia after she learned that he got betrayed by her kingdom's adventurers, then refused help from adventurers from other countries (skipped in the anime), it's a well know fact in universe that raftalia's parents were adventurers so raftalia had a lot of potential.
]



Overall the anime was very fun for me, a WN reader; as a standalone version, the plot is weaker by having the world bend to naofumi too fast , too easy. It really works hard in making him and his actions look good which makes the work more shallow; but in the whole concept of the rest of the franchise, it fits very well. Production was good, good voice acting, the animation and direction was above the average for isekai. while it was ntoa ble to become the best isekai anime (as it had the potential for it), it's still not far away from the isekai quartet. now to wait for mushoku tensei and hope they don't rush it as they did with knights and magic.
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Calsolum



Joined: 11 May 2010
Posts: 746
PostPosted: Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:43 pm Reply with quote
maximilianjenus wrote:
Last Episode

I really loved that scene with motoyasu in the end ; it confirms my suspicions that this was (wn readers only) spoiler[another loop] and justifies why is the anime working so hard to make naofumi look so good spoiler[because motoyasu is manipulating people so that happens] Originally in the WN the one that saves rishia is motoyasu, that gives us a very important clue to him; but the one that saves rishia there is naofumi; this makes naofumi look better, first, by humanizing motoyasu less and second because originally rishia is "pushed" to naofumi (instead of him seeking for her help like the does in the anime) because motoyasu can't help her more.

But again, motoyasu's last dialogue pretty much saved the anime for me.

Ah yeah, someone asked who the golden goose was, minor spoilers because it has alreayd been hinted; mostly by having the slave merchant aproach naofumi and by having him sell raftalia to naofumi for so cheap, particularly as some people found it weird that the slave mechant values raftalia at hundreds of gold coins when he sees her teenager version yet he sold her for so little when it was better business to just heal her then have her level up.

spoiler[
The golden goose is the queen; she has been helping naofumi from the shadows (pun intended) she paid the slave merchant the real price for raftalia after she learned that he got betrayed by her kingdom's adventurers, then refused help from adventurers from other countries (skipped in the anime), it's a well know fact in universe that raftalia's parents were adventurers so raftalia had a lot of potential.
]



Overall the anime was very fun for me, a WN reader; as a standalone version, the plot is weaker by having the world bend to naofumi too fast , too easy. It really works hard in making him and his actions look good which makes the work more shallow; but in the whole concept of the rest of the franchise, it fits very well. Production was good, good voice acting, the animation and direction was above the average for isekai. while it was ntoa ble to become the best isekai anime (as it had the potential for it), it's still not far away from the isekai quartet. now to wait for mushoku tensei and hope they don't rush it as they did with knights and magic.


Hmn thats interesting. motoyasu's last line at the end certainly struck me as strange and made no sense to me but once in a while shield hero has some great moments. I've been reading the manga version of the reprise of the spear hero and it was certainly more entertaining than it had any right to be but I didn't make the connection that spoiler[the anime version of motoyasu might have been from the future. That said unless there's something else thats revealed later on I don't think this motoyasu is intentionally manipulating anyone, after his word slip (which i'm guessing is what tipped you off to his looping ability) instead of hiding it he seems confused as to why he'd say that. He also doesn't see women as pigs so my guess is that he has a very vague sense of future events that slips out unintentionally ]

Personally now that its all over I think the most accurate description is that it had a lot of potential but squandered it throughout its runtime. The beginning was where it was at its best but soon after Naofumi started mowing down his enemies and it really didn't help that his enemies were just too damn stupid. I would have liked to have seen more episodes of him struggling against the other heroes in fair combat and seen more battles where he used the more unorthodox abilities of his shield. That last couple of battles he's just been spamming the same shields/effects and if those fail then he uses the curse series with temporary consequences kinda kills all the tension with the curse series after we know it's effects can be healed if he survives.
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Hiroki not Takuya



Joined: 17 Apr 2012
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PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:06 am Reply with quote
Not having seen the WN or manga, I loved this beginning to end but like you guys, I find it was weaker for having the other "heros" be so petty/inept/weak. And now Naofumi has his own ersatz kingdom and is forming a little army which seems odd given the heros are the only ones capable of successfully fighting the waves. Hinting that the real hard choice looming is determining which world is annihilated is both an interestingly bold twist and distressing set up. Wouldn't it be reasonable for reps of both worlds to get together, share information and get a plan together to fight/end the waves that doesn't involve non-existence for billions? Confused
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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1913
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:57 am Reply with quote
That's assuming fighting together does not has a cost.

In a sequel season, if well directed, they can make that cost very apparent (and maybe make some vegasn happy) ; particularly if they make naofumi disgusted after certain events...they already had a chance for it in the pope fight and skipped it (iirc), but that's common in anime to move foreshadowing further down the plot so it's clsoer to where it matters.
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TarsTarkas



Joined: 20 Dec 2007
Posts: 4148
Location: Virginia, United States
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 10:12 am Reply with quote
Hiroki not Takuya wrote:
Not having seen the WN or manga, I loved this beginning to end but like you guys, I find it was weaker for having the other "heros" be so petty/inept/weak.


When it came to the three heroes, my thoughts about their faults was that it was more realistic, a true reflection of real life. Real people are more like the three heroes, than are like Naofumi. That includes the Princess Malty.
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maximilianjenus



Joined: 29 Apr 2013
Posts: 1913
PostPosted: Fri Jun 28, 2019 4:12 pm Reply with quote
ren and itsuki are higschool kids; while naofumi and motoyasu are the adults...and motoyasu is..well.. the best character of the series.
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Hiroki not Takuya



Joined: 17 Apr 2012
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2019 10:34 am Reply with quote
TarsTarkas wrote:
...Real people are more like the three heroes, than are like Naofumi. That includes the Princess Malty.
I also appreciated that overall this show is a stand-out for injecting realism into the characterizations but maybe I should say the continued physical and emotional weakness in the other heros got a bit old. Jerks tend to stay jerks IRL but if they get "powned" in a fight they will at least step up and try to be stronger or at least more aggressive. And just the opposite seems to have happened in the last EP leaving Naofumi the Last Best Hope. But we do see more realism as at least one hero decides to get vindictive as a result, while High School Jock Motoyasu decides to chill with his harem.

Relative to the WN discussion earlier, I think the anime definitely decided to not have Raphtalia's parents be active adventurers otherwise they should have been more effective in protecting her. Thus, she was just a sickly slave girl without much prospect for a future and not a stealth "diamond in the rough" adventuress. That she indeed turned out to be that was a matter of character development. However, having Miss Shadow show up with Mr. Slaver is an interesting tip off and makes me wonder what the "bold move" of the Shield Hero was. Could he have made a deal with the Queen to buy up a bunch of the slaves to be part of his army?? Would make sense...
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Calsolum



Joined: 11 May 2010
Posts: 746
PostPosted: Sat Jun 29, 2019 4:16 pm Reply with quote
TarsTarkas wrote:
Hiroki not Takuya wrote:
Not having seen the WN or manga, I loved this beginning to end but like you guys, I find it was weaker for having the other "heros" be so petty/inept/weak.


When it came to the three heroes, my thoughts about their faults was that it was more realistic, a true reflection of real life. Real people are more like the three heroes, than are like Naofumi. That includes the Princess Malty.


I believe this is a great example of 'Truth is stranger than fiction because we don't meet it as often.' (https://quoteinvestigator.com/2015/07/15/truth-stranger/)
While I absolutely agree that there would be people that would act like Malty and the 3 stooges authenticity doesn't correlate to entertaining, there are numerous autobiographies and 'true stories' that are incredibly boring even to people with great interest in the topic. It takes skill to make 'truth' interesting.
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Kirki



Joined: 11 Jun 2019
Posts: 22
PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:00 pm Reply with quote
I came into this looking for something like Re: Zero, but all I got was the adventures of a guy (a bitter guy) with his pretty girls. What do you mean, that's what's happening in Re: Zero as well?

Well, Re: Zero was indefinitely more well written. With Shield Hero, it felt like the production was actively trying their best and they believed in their show, but it just didn't always stick the landing. I don't know if that's the fault of the source material, but after its strong start, most of the show was hanging in between boring and passable.

Usually, when a season ends with: "Our adventure is just beginning!", then it's 90% probable it's not getting a second season. It did its job by advertising the novels, now bye bye.
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Punch Drunk Marc



Joined: 04 Oct 2013
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 30, 2019 3:45 pm Reply with quote
maximilianjenus wrote:
ren and itsuki are higschool kids; while naofumi and motoyasu are the adults...and motoyasu is..well.. the best character of the series.


Maybe in his spinoff...
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