The Heroes Turmoil Persists – Shield Hero Ep. 10 Review
The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 10 Review: In the Midst of Turmoil
We left off at the last episode with at least two major discoveries. Number one, the king has a second daughter named Melty who has been parading around Naofumi’s camp as a mostly oblivious passenger. Number two, she is actually the heir to the throne because her older sister is too mischievous for her own good.
Throughout the episode we get a peak into Melty’s mission. She was sent by her mother, the Queen, to pacify the King, and restore favor to the Shield Hero. Right off the bat she is a failure. Naofumi is far too jaded. He has absolutely every right not to trust a royal. At every turn he is obstructed by them and cast aside. It really has only been a bother to him to trust anyone with any real power.
The World Around Melromarc’s Kingdom
A major part of the episode uncovers some more secrets about where Naofumi has found himself stranded. He learns he can upgrade the class of him companions, Raphtalia and Filo. Of course he is blocked by the powers that be that still hold some crazy unwarranted grudge against him. He goes to the dragon stone tower only to be shaken down for his money, and subsequently told no anyway. Its par for the course for Naofumi.
One of the interesting parts of the show is how Naofumi now reacts to impediments. In the capital he is a known entity, and yet treated like scum. Outside of the capital he is unknown, and treated like the heroes he deserves. At this point in the story he is completely resigned to his fate and it is almost sad to watch. If it really wasn’t for Raphtalia and Filo, who knows how far the curse shield could have taken this broken and shallow man. He still has some redeeming to do, and hopefully we can see it after this next wave.
The Return of the Slave Trader
There is something completely off-putting about the slave trader every time he is on screen. Something about him is a necessary evil that I don’t feel Naofumi really grasps. He is too calm when engaging with the creepy little man. At least Filo appears as uneasy as the viewer might.
Its dissapointing to hear how successful the slave trader’s business is with Naofumi’s own success. We aren’t going to see the Shield Hero break his unfair reputation any time soon with the taint of the slavery around him. Fortunately what is good for business is also good for Naofumi. He learns more about the world outside of Melromarc’s Kingdom and where he can upgrade his party. Apparently there is another kingdom called Shieldfreeden. That sounds suspiciously like shield freedom. Clearly this is where the Shield Hero needs to go, and yet we won’t get there any time soon. We have another wave of enemies approaching, and everyone’s in town.
Everyone’s in Town for the Wave
Towards the end of the episode we see the other two heroes we haven’t seen much of yet. Its a rather disappointing showing for them. The moral high ground of the Sword and Bow Heroes really took a hit this episode. I had felt after the shameful display of the King, Malty, and Motoyasu during the original duel, that the other two heroes could come around. They were starting to see through the facade of shade King Melromarc after he called the duel in favor of the Spear Hero. They knew Naofumi was cheated. They called everyone out for being complicit in it. It just doesn’t seem like they fully trust the Shield Hero yet. Actually the Bow Hero was pretty explicit about that.
The last couple of episode have shown Naofumi cleaning up their mistakes, and now he is just making them feel guilty for it. He called it out previously; they are treating this like a video game, and not a real world with real consequences. This is of course coming from an animated character in a fictional world based on a light novel. But I digress.
Ren and Itsuki really don’t seem to have come around as much on Naofumi’s character as I thought, and this episode did nothing but confirm their original bias. The Shield Hero laughs at them, sparking confrontation. The scene really only settles when Raphtalia intervenes and the other heroes see her wounds. I was hoping this would be where they actually fully realized their wrongs but it wasn’t. Even as he leaves, Itsuki gets one last jab in saying he doesn’t really believe Naofumi. This is just water off a ducks back at this point.
The Growing Party as the Wave Approaches
With all of the talk about how everyone in the capital hates the Shield Hero, it is nice to see his fans come around and be helpful. A group of young warriors from Lute, mostly unnamed so far, really want to join Naofumi and help him fight in the next wave. With a seemingly greedy mission of pay him 150 silvers, the group runs off for most of the episode only to be seen at the end. His mission for them of course was to help them upgrade themselves before joining the fight. Oh happy days. The real question is, will Naofumi enslave these party members too?
The next wave is the next episode. With a whole new bunch of people how will the party dynamics continue to play out. We see enough of Raphtalia vs. Filo for the unrequited affection of Naofumi. The Shield Hero hasn’t had a chance to practice and learn the strengths of his new minions. This is going to be an ugly battle next episode.
[Image via Crunchyroll]