The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 23

The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 23

Cal Mira Archipelago

It’s time for our heroes (one of which is actually a hero) to head on over to the Cal Mira Archipelago. It’s unclear whether Cal Mira is a distinct country from the Kingdom of Melromarc, but something which is discovered later on in the episode hints that it was at some point even if that’s no longer the case.

Since ancient times, this chain of islands has been the training ground for generations of the Four Cardinal Heroes. The reason for this is that a special event happens on these islands which grants double experience when monsters are defeated. We can also assume that the spawn rates of monsters are increased during this period.

Upon arrival the heroes are also given pamphlets which explain the rules they’ll have to abide by during the duration of the event. Basically it’s your standard MMO etiquette, no kill stealing, no griefing, etc.

Naofumi, Raphtalia, and Filo fighting a giant toad from the anime series The Rising of the Shield Hero
Naofumi, Raphtalia, and Filo fighting a giant toad

On an unrelated note, this episode actually did a really good job at showing, not telling, in regards to one of Naofumi’s special abilities. Much earlier on in the series it was said that the Shield Hero has some healing abilities which are unique to him, and I believe one of those abilities was poison resistance.

In this week’s episode it was hinted, multiple times, that Naofumi also has a resistance to feeling sick in general. As far as I can remember there were three distinct times in this episode which illustrated this point:

  1. The other three heroes all get seasick on the boat, but Naofumi doesn’t. Also the fact that Raphtalia didn’t get motion sickness this time may be a sign that Naofumi’s skill is extending to his party.
  2. L’Arc comments about how Naofumi doesn’t seem to be adversely affected by alcohol.
  3. Naofumi is able to eat the berries Cal Mira’s alcohol is made of without an issue. Meanwhile, eating just one was enough to make Motoyasu collapse and begin foaming at the mouth.

Are we being reminded of Naofumi’s resistance to these sorts of things because they’re going to be important in the next battle? It reminds me of how Luffy developed a resistance to poisons in One Piece.

The Scythe Hero?

If you read my review of last week’s episode then you’ll know I predicted that L’Arc’s weapon of choice would be a sickle of some sort. Well, it turns out that I’m just a big, dumb, idiot because he’s actually shown to use a scythe in the OP. Good thing nobody called me out on that before I had a chance to write this week’s review.

We also learn that his full name is L’Arc Berg, and that his companion’s name is Therese. It’s also implied that the pair, or at least Therese, come from a distant country, or other world as I’ll get to in a bit. So what evidence is there to support this claim that they’re foreigners?

The first piece of evidence is the fact that Therese speaks another language which Raphtalia isn’t familiar with. Naofumi understands this other language naturally thanks to the power of his shield, but the same isn’t true for his companions. This makes Therese the first person we’ve met in the series not to speak the same language as everyone else.

To further set Therese apart, she uses an entirely new form of magic which relies on gemstones. One of the magical attacks she uses envelopes her enemies (and friends) in blue flames, but only the enemies are harmed. Naofumi even mentions that the fire didn’t feel hot, his clothes weren’t singed, and he feels as though the curse that was on him had been lifted.

Okay, so it seems like there’s some pretty good evidence for this pair being foreigners, but what if they were from a place much further away? What if they were from another world like Naofumi is?

Let’s start with what I think is the worse piece of evidence for this, Therese’s magic. As I just explained, this magic is unlike anything we’ve seen in the series before, so it’s possible that it’s the magic of another world. This is by no means definitive proof, but I figured I’d mention it anyway.

The better piece of information is L’Arc’s scythe. When Therese speaks and Raphtalia can’t understand her, L’Arc uses some special ability from his scythe to translate her speech. This is exactly like the ability Naofumi’s shield and the weapons of the other Four Cardinal Heroes have that allows them to communicate in this world.

From this we can assume that L’Arc’s scythe is also a heroic weapon, making him the Scythe Hero. That alone would imply that L’Arc was summoned from another world originally, but there’s still one problem: there’s no legend about a Scythe Hero. Does this mean that he’s a hero from another world? If so, how did he get here?

Of course, it’s also possible that the Scythe Hero simply isn’t in the legends of Melromarc, and that he’s actually another hero summoned into the world like Naofumi was. Perhaps he’s a hero from a distant continent, not just another country, which would explain the lack of legends about him.

Surfs Up

I was going to include a section about how the double xp weekend on the Cal Mira Archipelago went for our heroes, but there wasn’t really all that much to discuss. All you need to know is that Naofumi teamed up with L’Arc, they got some strange drop from a monster, and then L’Arc didn’t want to team up anymore.

Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, I can get on with talking about how this episode evolved from a double xp weekend episode into an obligatory beach episode. Though unfortunately while there were shots of Raphtalia and Filo in their bathing suits, they didn’t last for very long.

I’d imagine that we’re going to see more of them in these outfits next week, but at the same time it feels like everything at the beach was accomplished within this episode. So what exactly was accomplished?

Filo in a bathing suit from the anime series The Rising of the Shield Hero
Filo in a bathing suit

Filo claims to have found an island beneath the waves, so she, Naofumi, and Raphtalia go to check it out. It’s at this point that we learn Filo is an excellent diver and can hold her breath for long periods at a time. However, Naofumi and Raphtalia can’t, so instead they wear outfits made of monster penguin skins which allow them to survive.

On the ocean floor they find the ruins of an ancient temple. Although it seems like there’s no way to open the doors, they react to Naofumi’s shield and open on their own. What they find inside changes the entire adventure to Cal Mira, a dragon hourglass. But why is this important?

First of all, I’m pretty sure each country can only have one hourglass. This implies that Cal Mira is either an independent country, or that it was at some point in the past. I don’t know if that will actually end up mattering at all, but it’s something to think about.

What’s more important is that a dragon hourglass designates a location where a wave can attack. This means that a wave could attack Cal Mira without them even knowing it’s possible. Further, the hourglass seems to react to Naofumi’s shield and starts a countdown of 48 hours.

From what I understand, the hourglass wasn’t counting down before Naofumi discovered it. So because he discovered it, the Cal Mira Archipelago is now going to be attacked before the heroes finish leveling up due to the event. On the other hand, a wave during this event would probably give some great experience if they can survive.

Conclusion

As for some final things to think about, L’Arc and Therese were around 16 levels above Naofumi’s party when they first met. It was also implied that there was a second level cap at 70 (the first was at 40). Perhaps after this wave they’ll be able to use this new hourglass to upgrade their classes once again.

Anyway, what did you think of this week’s episode of The Rising of the Shield Hero? I thought it was a pretty decent episode overall, but as much as I liked the beach part, it felt very out of place. Let me know what you thought about it in the comments and any predictions you have regarding L’Arc.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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2 Replies to “The Rising of the Shield Hero Episode 23”

  1. Why is Naofumi still acting like an angsty prick? Jesus they’re just milking the emo shit for all they can these last few episodes. Anything to disguise the fact that Naofumi is just another self-insert generic piece of shit.

    The first interaction of the episode is more validation of the MC. “The shield hero is a devil, but you’re clearly nothing like that!”

    The second interaction of the episode is more validation of the MC. Naofumi is the only one who doesn’t get seasick. What a badass! And not only that, but the other heroes get the comeuppance for hogging the private cabins. Justice is served!

    The third interaction of the episode is more validation of the MC. He’s really skilled a jewel crafting! And just like that he’s won over another female cast member. Nice, dude!!! Grow that harem.

    Turns out Naofumi can eat the fantasy-grapes that wine is made from whole! Wow!!! Definitely not more validation of the MC so that the audience can self-insert as him and feel superior to the other limp-dick heroes.

    And the princess who tried to murder her own sister is right there – in the Spear Hero’s team. That’s absurd. Nothing ever changes. It’s like the writers don’t know what else to do.It makes no sense. The author/writers have no clue. Yeah, she’s really suffering by getting called “bitch” all the time while otherwise going about her business with no consequences.
    But the writers need her there so that she can continue to be an “obstacle” for the MC. Because there is nothing else to this story. I don’t know how they do it, but each episode that comes out escalates with even more gratuitous fanservice and hyping up of the self-insert main character. I mean it’s painfully obvious that a good third or half of the runtime of the episode was spent informing the audience of what an amazing, superior specimen Naofumi is. There’s no character development, instead it’s just nonstop dick-sucking of the MC and by extension the audience.

    1. I’m fine with all those instances of the episode “building up” Naofumi because I do actually think they were at least referenced before in the series. Sure, L’Arc saying he’s a great guy doesn’t really matter, but the not getting seasick and his ability to eat the fruit I think are tied to his poison resistance. Also his crafting is something that we’ve seen him working on continuously throughout the series, so it’s not like he suddenly got good at it.

      Where I definitely agree with you though is the fact that Myne is still around and in Motoyasu’s party. There’s literally no reason for her to be around other than to be a minor annoyance to Naofumi and his party. I’ve previously compared her and Motoyasu to Team Rocket from Pokémon, and I think that comparison still holds true. And I completely agree that her “punishment” was stupid. Maybe a middle schooler got to guest write that part.

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