Well this was surprisingly not as action-packed, nor as bloody as I thought it was going to be, but I guess that’s what happens when you’re working with a shield and the one with the sword has been assigned to evacuate the villagers. Needless to say, it was still cool to see Naofumi have to think more creatively how he was going to deal with the undead monsters, unlike his fellow heroes who have flashier weapons of their own. Much of his efforts did what you would expect a traditional tank would do in a game, taunt the enemy and have them focus on him instead of the damage dealers, or in this case, the powerless villagers.
Despite all the hurt and pain Naofumi has been through, he wasn’t just going to stand by and watch a village be ravaged by the Wave. He and Raphtalia were the first and for a long time, the only ones to show up to protect both the town and its residents. Of course it would make his life a lot more easier to keep Raphtalia by his side for much of the fight, but he wanted to make sure he could save as many lives as he could, so he had her help escort the residents to safety. On top of that, Naofumi was constantly conscious about how to minimize damaging the village, but all of that effort was thrown out the window when the Royal Knights had fire rain down over the town regardless of Naofumi, the Shield Hero being present. But that wasn’t the worst part about it. It is easy to forget, but had it happened any minute earlier, the villagers who stayed to fight and protect their home would have been caught in the crossfire. It just goes to show how the Royal Knights don’t give a shit, as long as it makes their job easier. They also had the nerve to disrespect Naofumi, and Raphtalia was having none of it.
Fortunately not all the knights are assholes, there was one Captain (I’m assuming was his position) who defied orders and kept his squad in the village to support Naofumi’s efforts until the Wave was over. The villagers also restored some faith in this ugly world, having chosen to come back to fight alongside him, but were still ushered away by him because he knew they would only get themselves killed. They also were sure to express their gratitude for his efforts, which surely gave Naofumi a bit of comfort in his heart.
And that’s really what he needed after having to face the other heroes once more. It was an unpleasant experience for Naofumi. Much to my surprise, Raphtalia has not heard anything about the false rumours that have spread far and wide. You would think she would have overheard it by now with all of the towns’ gossip, but apparently not. Regardless, Naofumi doesn’t want to talk about it, simply because he doesn’t think anyone would believe what he says.
Speaking of Raphtalia, she has grown up quite a bit since we last saw her, which surprised me because I wasn’t expecting her growth spurt to happen this soon, much less in a week time since the coal mine fight. Regardless, she has grown even cuter with her bossy personality of looking out for Naofumi. His whole reaction to her growth is pretty funny too, considering he is pretty apathetic about the whole thing.
In all, I honestly found this episode to be underwhelming, especially when we consider the scale of the Waves we have seen from Raphtalia’s flashbacks. But in some ways, it seems some of the worst of the spawns were outside of the village, such as the beast the other heroes had faced and defeated looked a lot more terrifying and dangerous than some of the ones attacking the village. Then again, it makes me wonder about how many actually spawned over there in comparison to the numbers Naofumi had to face.