The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 6

The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 6

A New Party Member

Filo is officially a new member of Naofumi’s party after her introduction last week. So, let’s take a quick look at how exactly she fits into the dynamic of the party.

The first and most obvious role Filo has is to pull the cart Naofumi got specifically for her to pull. However, if this was her only role, then I’m not entirely sure she could really count as a party member. In that case, she would be little more than a pack animal.

We also learn that Filo is quite skilled in what I’ll call martial arts. Basically, while in her Filolial form, she’s surprisingly agile and can deliver devastatingly powerful kicks. In fact, we even see her shatter the skull of a Nue fairly easily. For reference, a Nue is essentially the Japanese version of a Greek Chimera.

But, that’s not all! It’s also revealed that Filo has an affinity for wind magic, which is something I assumed could be the case when discussing her in last week’s review. I mean, she’s a giant bird, so it only makes sense that she would have an affinity for wind magic, right?

And, thanks to both Filo and the lolicon seamstress, we learned how Naofumi sees his two party members. Upon being asked by Filo if he was her father, Naofumi replies, “No. I’m your owner.” However, when the question of Raphtalia came up, Naofumi admitted to viewing her as his daughter, which you may recall is how I previously assumed he thought of her.

Despite Naofumi’s insistence that he’s Filo’s owner and not a father figure to her, I can’t see this continuing for long. There’s no way he doesn’t eventually come around and see Filo as his daughter, especially since it appears she’ll retain her child-like form no matter what level she becomes.

The real question isn’t whether or not Naofumi will see Filo as his daughter eventually, but rather if Raphtalia has been relegated to the daughter-zone. It’s going to be kind of weird if Naofumi turns around and falls in love with Raphtalia now that he’s claimed she’s his daughter.

Filolial Queen

Continuing on with our discussion of Filo, we also learned that she’s a Filolial Queen. It’s unclear how common Filolial Kings and Queens are, but we can assume they’re pretty rare considering it’s been said that there’s only one per flock.

The fact that Filo is a Filolial Queen is also why she has the ability to transform into a human, albeit one with wings. However, it wasn’t specified that Filolial Kings and Queens can only transform into a human form, so perhaps we’ll see her transform into other creatures in the future.

The only problem with this ability to transform between drastically different body types is that every time Filo turns into a Filolial, she tears apart all of her human clothing. This is an issue I don’t often see fantasy series take into serious consideration, the only other one I can think of being Spice and Wolf.

However, while Holo simply undresses except for in the most extreme circumstances, that would be an inconvenience for Filo who transitions between her two forms on a regular basis. To solve this, a magic garment is needed that won’t be torn apart upon Filo transforming.

But, the issue with that is that these magic garments are made to order and require thread woven from the wearer’s mana. That itself wouldn’t be too big of an issue, except that the magic shop woman needs a new magic gemstone before she can make thread out of Filo’s mana.

We’ll get to that in a later section. Basically the thing you need to take away from all this is that although Naofumi rolled an SSR from the Chocobo gacha, Filo is a very expensive child to take care of due to her need for special items.

Spice and Raccoon

Luckily for Filo, she has the ability to pay for herself in no time. In her Filolial form, Filo is able to both pull a wagon full of merchandise or, when detached from the wagon, speed between towns to deliver packages or urgent messages.

With the merchant pass he received from the chief of Lute village and Filo pulling the wagon, Naofumi is able to make a decent living as a merchant travelling between towns. He even robs a group of mountain bandits just so he can sell their stolen goods at market.

Naofumi, Raphtalia, and Filo as merchants from the anime series The Rising of the Shield Hero
Naofumi, Raphtalia, and Filo as merchants

And, while traveling between towns, it’s not uncommon to find those who are willing to pay for a ride on the wagon and safe passage to their destination. But, what may be the most important way of making money for Naofumi is to use Filo to transport himself and medicine to those in need.

As the Shield Hero, Naofumi has an affinity for healing magic, and by using this magic on medicine, he’s able to drastically increase its potency. In fact, in a relatively short time, rumors have spread around about Naofumi and Filo, who are revered as gods by the sick.

While being a merchant may make more money than being a traveling doctor, it’s this latter profession which helps spread good about Naofumi around. These good rumors then attract more business and potential allies.

Honestly, I wouldn’t mind if this series just went off on a tangent arc about using commerce to build up a trade network for Naofumi to rely on later. It would also be interesting to see how the King, Myne, and Motoyasu would attempt to thwart Naofumi’s business enterprises.

Magic Gemstone

As previously mentioned, the magic shop owner needs a new magic gemstone in order to create magic thread out of Filo’s mana so the seamstress can make her a magical outfit. But, magic gemstones are expensive and hard to come by.

Luckily, a traveling businessman who Naofumi gave a ride and protection to repaid him in part with a deed for the mining rights of such gemstones. The only problem is that a monster known as a Nue is guarding the cave in which the magic gemstones can be found.

But, with the help of the woman from the magic shop, Naofumi and his party are able to defeat the Nue and extract a magic gemstone. Interestingly, they only took what they needed. If I were in Naofumi’s position, I would have collected as many as possible for later use or to sell.

Though, perhaps the deed he received only entitled him to a set amount.

Filo in her magic outfit from the anime series The Rising of the Shield Hero
Filo in her magic outfit

With the magic gemstone gathered, magic thread was able to be made out of Filo’s mana and a magical outfit was able to be made out of said thread. This outfit transforms along with Filo so it never gets destroyed when she changes from her human to Filolial form.

But, I do have to say that I preferred Filo’s previous pink dress over this white and blue one. This new dress just looks too much like a 1950s nightgown. If you’re going for a loli character design, the previous dress she had was a much cuter option.

The Other Heroes

At one point in the episode, Naofumi tells us about some of the rumors he’s heard of his fellow Heroes through the merchant grapevine. Since these are rumors, we’ll have to take them with a grain of salt, but they could still give us some important information nonetheless.

Starting with the Sword Hero, it’s said that he’s off somewhere fighting high-level monsters and generally acting as you would expect the Sword Hero to act. There was even a rumor going around that he defeated a dragon, and I wouldn’t be surprised if this were actually true.

The rumors surrounding the Bow Hero, however, are a bit more muddy. Not only are there a bunch of conflicting rumors circulating about him, but they all seem to involve him doing thing which are seemingly out of character. One rumor even said he joined up with a rebel force in a neighboring kingdom.

Maybe one of these rumors about him is true, but I’m thinking these conflicting rumors are actually the doing of a still unknown player. We know there’s at least one secret organization at work, so who’s to say there aren’t more. Perhaps the Bow Hero is already dead and these rumors have been circulated with the purpose of giving the impression he’s still alive.

But, while the rumors surrounding the Bow Hero are the most interesting to me, those surrounding the Spear Hero are the most “classic Spear Hero.” It’s said that he saved a portion of the kingdom from starvation by introducing some sort of magical crop to the region.

This may look like a heroic deed on the surface, but as is hinted later on, this probably isn’t the case. Within the cave where Naofumi harvested the gemstone was an empty chest with a plaque beside it. This plaque said that the chest contained some sort of miracle seed that backfired and should never be unleashed upon the world again.

It’s pretty obvious to me that this is the exact crop which Motoyasu has, likely unknowingly, unleashed upon the people of the kingdom. I can already tell that this was a plot set up by Myne and that she’s somehow going to blame the ensuing devastation on Naofumi.

Conclusion

I know that this episode of The Rising of the Shield Hero didn’t have the most action, but it may have been my favorite episode so far. There was a fair amount of world building regarding Filolials, magic items, and merchants, and if there’s one thing I like other than good character writing, it’s world building.

What were your thoughts on this week’s episode? Do you like Filo as a character? Honestly, I’m still not entirely sold on her, but maybe she’ll bring something more to the table as the series progresses. Also, did you catch the link between the rumors of the Spear Hero and the missing item in the cave?

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Finally, I’d like to thank HeavyROMAN for supporting DoubleSama.com at the Heika tier this month. To learn more about supporting this blog, head on over to Patreon.com/DoubleSama.

My review of the next episode is available here.

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