Shin no Nakama Episode 1 [First Impression]
Eva’s First Impression
Well it turns out after watching this, I couldn’t help but write about it! This past summer I have been reading the first volume of the series, and while I have read past the point this episode had covered (chapter 1), I have yet to finish it the volume. That’s why I was inclined to wanted to try out the anime, to see if it gets more interesting to motivate me to get back to finishing the first volume and justify picking up the second.
Shin no Nakama AKA: Banished from the Heroes’ Party I Decided to Live a Quiet Life in the Countryside, is exactly as the title describe it to be. (Also bonus points: It’s not an Isekai!)
In this world, everyone is bestowed with a Divine Blessing which grants them the skills based on their type (ie: mage = magic). The protagonist Gibeon Ragnason was blessed with the Guide skill, said to be dedicated to the Hero (his sister, Ruti Ragnason) during the first leg of her journey. While he possesses the strength of a veteran knight since birth, the problem is that his skill has supposedly peaked, and he was no longer able to keep up to par with the rest of the Hero’s team. As result he was told to leave because he was deemed as deadweight, so he agreed to leave and decided to settle down and start anew in Zoltan, a remote town situated as the “end of the world”. There he cast aside his old name and goes by Red, pursuing a new drema of opening an Apothecary.
This episode pretty much covers the gist of it, and ends with Red opening his Apothecary. It was a slow opener, just as slow as I remember it being in the novel, but I did find it to be a bit more enjoyable as it was able to hold my attention better than the book did. However the one thing that didn’t change was what was what made me think, “Ehhhhh…” when I was reading the first half remained the same: How Red was told to leave the Hero’s Team, which I think played a big part of killing my interest within the first chapter.
So basically Ares (an obnoxious mage from the Hero’s team
(with a very punchable face)) told Red to leave the party because he has become dead-weight to the team, and he was doing this because Ruti, (who is also Red’s sister and the blessed Hero) is not the type abandon her comrades. I don’t know if it was because the execution of it was lacking or just the plain reasoning for it (especially since it was only coming from Ares), but whatever it was, I wasn’t really convince by it. For all I know, it might be because I was trying to wrap my head around how Red, who was described to have the strength of a veteran knight since the moment he was born, and is someone who has the title as the second-in-command of the Bahamut Knights, is being described to be unbearably weak. We are given a somewhat questionable example with Ares challenging Red to break his barrier with a bronze sword, which he fails to do- and yet we later see he is capable of taking out an (albeit, already wounded) Owlbear that a B-Ranked Adventurer and their team struggled to kill. The lack of context of his strength puts a big question mark on where exactly, his strength peaks at. So it begs the question: Is he really that weak, or are the members of the Hero’s party just that over-powered?
I suppose it depends on how you look at it. Admittedly I didn’t think this hard when I was reading it, but after I watching this and thinking about it some more, I am leaning more towards the idea that the Hero’s team is OP. This would kind of make sense given this is the “Hero Unit” that is dedicated to basically mowing down the monsters ravaging the lands because the average knights are being overwhelming by the enemy’s forces. In that sense, perhaps Red’s abilities would be better to be measured up to that, or maybe he is somewhere in between the two. Not quite OP, but is still stronger than an average Knight. And based on the fact he was able to one-shot that Owlbear with the very same bronze-sword that couldn’t break Ares’ barrier, and our comparison with the B-Ranked Knight Albert and his team had to continuously pursue it and recklessly set the forest ablaze to take it down, I am going to go along with the guess that Red is actually somewhere between A and S Ranked, while the Hero’s unit is something like SS+, you know since they are super special kind of thing. This is all early speculation of course. But we did see how Red actually has some pretty nifty skills that could be perceived as OP such as: Endurance Mastery: Fatigue Immunity and High-Speed Mastery: Lightning Speed, however he did mention that his “Guide” skills tends to be the amongst the common skills, so perhaps the fact he didn’t have an exclusively unique skill-set that makes him beneficial in battle is why he fell behind the rest. Needless to say, I still can’t help but harbor some doubt in Are’s explanation.
Anyhow, regardless how I felt about it, since Red agreed to leave the team, there was no real kerfuffle about it. The only thing he asked was to be claimed as MIA so he doesn’t tarnish the Bahamut Knight’s honor, which I think was a fair enough given, it would be freaking awkward and humiliating to return from a hero’s team under such pretense. But if there’s one thing this whole fiasco did show us, is that Red himself was already aware that he wasn’t contributing as much as the others, and the only reason he was sticking around was to look out for his sister.
But of course, Ares just couldn’t leave him be when the guy already peacefully agreed to leave by telling him to leave behind his equipment because he “didn’t earn it”! Arg, I can’t stand characters like him! It’s pretty clear that Ares holds something against him (beyond him being dead-weight) – all the more reason why I’d rather hear from the rest of the team what they thought of Gideon’s contributions (even if it might tick me off).
That said, Red isn’t exactly a stand out protagonist. As of this premiere (and chapter), he really didn’t offer or do anything that makes me think, “I really like this character”, so it would be accurate to say there just wasn’t enough for me to judge him on this episode alone. But I guess it’s enough to think he doesn’t completely bore me at least. He is somewhat a quiet character, mainly because he is going out of his way to lay low, as he doesn’t to draw attention to history to the villager (though at least one of them already have strong suspicions of his past as a knight), which is why he doesn’t care for raising his adventurer Rank D any higher than it already is. He even outright refuses to cooperate with an adventurer who was searching for someone with Guide skill to help them traverse the forest to hunt the Owlbear. After-all, his goal is to run an apothecary and lead a simple life. However, he did show us he is willing to step up to the plate when medical attention is urgently needed, which make sense given his job. There was crisis at hand when Tanta, a child he is acquainted with was inflicted with White-Eye that will make the victim go blind within 24 hours if failed to be treated. Except this it was a bit more complicated because the mountains where the ingredients he needed grow were off-limits. Defying the order could expel him from the Adventurer Guild, yet Red still readily went. Thankfully he did, because he was able to salvage some of the Blood-Pines that were essential medical ingredients from the fires recklessly lit by the party hunting the rampaging Owlbear.
At the very least, his efforts were recognized, and by successfully obtaining the Blood-Pines needed to treat Tanta’s White Eye, Red was able to finally build and open Apothecary. It will certainly be helpful to have a shop of the likes in a fairly isolated town. However I am certainly more interested in seeing what kind of relationship he and the female lead will have together. Both OP and ED sequences certainly gives off a married life vibe, and I’d be lying if I said that isn’t my main source of curiosity right now, so it is definitely playing a part in giving this series the benefit of the doubt. I also want to see if the story improves as everyone says it will beyond Vol 1.
So it looks like I might give this one up to three episodes to see if it’ll grow on me after-all. I still have two more shows coming up that I am still considering, so it all comes down to which ones clicks best with me by the end of the week.
Possibility of Blogging: Moderate
Possibility of Watching: Moderate