Rising of the Shield Hero: Naofumi Doesn’t Always Need To Be Right

Okay, Episode 19 is out and I’m about to get controversial:

To save a long story short, the heroes need to work together to stop the Pope from killing each other. So the four heroes decide to present a united front and defeat the bad guy right?

WRONG.

Instead, they have to spend a good several minutes talking to get Naofumi to help out after he lectures them on everything they did wrong before he suddenly decides to work with them after they know how wrong they were. Now, I’ve criticized their actions and how those villagers had time to clear out the dragon instead of profiting off his slaying of it, so I don’t sympathize with them. But what I want to bring to attention here is Naofumi’s reluctance to help out and instead plan things out with his party since he’s confident they can survive without the other three heroes help…

The issue here is that it’s all bullshit because he knows that if any of them die, Chocobo Queen is going to kill all the remaining heroes. He knows this. He promised her he would try to make amends and when presented with the perfect opportunity, he decides he’s just going to talk crap and get them fighting amongst themselves…

Right in front of the enemy who is going to kill them all, giving them a chance to power up. They paused the action just so that he could lecture them.

Are you kidding me?

This is the moment I remembered why I hated this part despite the anime doing so much better than the manga in taming the darker aspects of Naofumi’s personality.

Now, I get he might not like the thought of working with them. After all, the source of his problems are right there (seriously, Firo, you could have let Myne die and we’d all be better for it), but that ship has largely sailed when the enemy is holding a tactical nuke to their face. Hell, the Pope even calls them out on this. Rightfully so.

Worse, the lecture isn’t even accurate.

Starting with last episode Naofumi’s been spewing a load of hot air when you consider his lecture about how his party could match Motoyatsu’s was because they trained harder. Last I checked, he’s still underleveled and his party literally just copied a technique they stole from Motoyatsu’s. One that Spear’s party worked towards, only for the girls on Naofumi’s party to get it in one-shot in order to one up his. He didn’t train to get that.

And last I checked, the heroes couldn’t defeat the Soul Eater because they couldn’t find the damn thing. Hell, even when they did find it they all did jack-all since they were all underleveled since they haven’t been fighting the Waves in other countries. Naofumi had to use a self-burning curse while they guarded him, and they still ran when Glass showed up because of said being underleveled.

Now, I love the beauty of the struggle with characters. Seeing them fall low and then rise up again is a beautiful thing to me. It’s why I loved the series at first. But this right here reminded me why I fell out of love with the series.

Naofumi has to be right, even when it doesn’t make sense. I can only have blinders on for so long when someone’s stupidity should have gotten them killed. That’s why I don’t bother with Motoyatsu. He’s too stupid to live but too strong to die.

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7 thoughts on “Rising of the Shield Hero: Naofumi Doesn’t Always Need To Be Right

  1. Yes, the lecture mid-fight right in front of the enemy was not just dull and inaccurate but an act of sheer stupidity that should have got them at least a little bit burned. While I’m enjoying the series as a whole, it is moments like these that keep it from being a favourite anime or even one I would rush to recommend. It works well enough but these moments just throw you out of the immersion you would really need to get behind this kind of story.

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  2. I think the whole point was to get Naofumi’s frustration off his chest whilst he had the opportunity. If he didn’t their teamwork would be alot worse. I get his viewpoint is: you don’t have to love them in order to work with them. He knows they are capable, it’s their own stupidity is what caused a lot of the issues.

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  3. It was probably not the best time to have that convo, but it felt fucking cathartic as all hell to see it happen. I really enjoyed this episode, but I can see why some people might have a problem with it.

    It’s a shame though at honest good faith critism of Shield Hero (which I is my second place choice for Anime of the Year atm) is drowned out by moral grandstanders trying to harp on about a single plot point.

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  4. Pingback: Quick Review: Rising of the Shield Hero | Kvasir 369's Anime, Manga, and Game Blog

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