Tate no Yuusha no Nariagari (Rise of the Shield Hero) is a 2019 isekai that burst onto the scene in the Winter season. Featuring a great redemption arc and an interesting take on isekai as a whole, Rise of the Shield Hero was a great start to the year and one of the year’s standout titles. That being said, let’s get nostalgic and revisit some of the best scenes from the series so far!
The Restoration of Raphtalia’s Home
One of the most fleshed out relationships in the anime is the one shared by protagonist Naofumi and his self-proclaimed bodyguard, Raphtalia. Having lost her family and her old village to the first couple of Waves, the biggest element to Raphtalia’s character was her feelings of loneliness, guilt and her trauma. Being in Naofumi’s party allowed her to process some of the trauma that she had experienced throughout her life. This was the same for Naofumi and his anger towards the Kingdom of Melromarc for falsely accusing him of his crimes. As a gesture of appreciation towards Raphtalia, as well as the beginning of his construction of an easier life for her once he’s gone, Naofumi sets out to repopulate and rebuild Raphtalia’s place of origin, with help from some of the people they saved in Siltvelt. A moment worth many tears of joy.
The “Execution” of Myne Sophia and King Melromarc
The whole reason why Naofumi had been treated as an outcast, over and above the religious extremism and propaganda propagated by the Three Heroes Church, is that Princess Malty accused him of sexual assault. Malty, also known as “Myne Sophia”, put together an intricate lie in order to gain favour with Motoyasu, the Spear Hero, and also to rob Naofumi of his starter budget and gear. It turns out that the King was already biased against Naofumi and was all too willing to exile him. When it was revealed that Myne lied and the King’s vendetta against The Shield inspired Naofumi’s exile, the Queen decided that they be executed. Naofumi stepped in at the last moment and suggested that rather than brutishly chopping off their heads, they live by new names: “Bitch” for Myne and “Trash” for the King. It showed Naofumi’s very… interesting kindness.
“Trust me, Raphtalia!” – Conquering the Three-Headed Dog
Soon after purchasing Raphtalia from the slaver, Naofumi set out to training the then-little Raphtalia; however, she was still traumatized and timid around him and many enemies. When the two entered a cave with valuable ores hidden inside, they encountered a beast that tormented Raphtalia’s past – a three-headed dog-type beast, which triggered Raphtalia’s panic, guilt, grief and self-doubt. However, with Naofumi’s guidance and continued protection even if it cost him his body, Raphtalia mustered up the courage to lunge at the beast while it was preoccupied with Naofumi and his shield, proving to be a pivotal moment in their relationship.
Racoon Shopping – Raphtalia’s New Owner
While most of this has been about Naofumi’s relationship with Raphtalia, we have to pay our respects to the wild decision that landed them together in the first place. Angry at the entire world for the lack of faith in him as well as the heap of damning evidence against him, Naofumi realises he can’t go adventuring on his own. He decides to look for a companion who won’t have the capacity to defy or betray him – a slave. A certain shady slaver has just what he needs in stock, and with Naofumi’s finances in shambles, he could only manage to afford a sickly racoon demi-human. That turned out to be his best decision and his eventual salvation from the anger that consumed him.
“If you really want to know, Your Majesty, kneel before me!”
After the second Wave, the Heroes barely make it out with their lives due to a last-ditch effort by Naofumi, with the use of his ominous Rage Shield. With it’s blistering flames fuelled by Naofumi’s burning rage, Naofumi staved off the threat and saved everyone. This didn’t stop the naysayers from being suspicious of the means through which the “weak” Shield Hero managed to amass power greater than the other three heroes; greater than anyone else there. Naofumi is summoned to the royal palace and interrogated, to which he responds, “If you really want to know, Your Majesty, kneel before me!”, with a smug smile on his face. It was really satisfying seeing the once high-and-mighty king literally shake at the disrespect!
Rise of the Shield Hero was filled with some epic moments, some sad, some downright heart-warming. Being one of the standout Winter titles for 2019, the series definitely set the tone for other shows and all this while being in competition with all the other brilliant shows that have aired and are set to air this year! Are there other scenes from Rise of the Shield Hero you thought were great? Drop a comment below and let’s converse!