If it wasn’t already apparent from my post history, I typically gravitate toward romance and fantasy series. As such, when a series comes along that has both, I’m all over it. Shin no Nakama ja Nai to Yuusha no Party wo Oidasareta node, Henkyou de Slow Life suru Koto ni Shimashita, or Banished from the Hero’s Party, I Decided to Live a Quiet Life in the Countryside for those who want an English title (albeit, not a direct translation), is exactly that. Unfortunately, it does better with one than the other.
The Good Stuff
Let’s start with the good part. The romance in this series feels really good. The relationship between Rit and Gideon is incredibly sweet. We’re talking full-on diabetes here. Pretty much every scene with the two of them cuddling together was cute and heart-warming.
I also liked the more mature relationship they had. It’s pretty rare to see a proper relationship without the random lucky pervert moments. The progression of their relationship felt very natural and wholesome. There were definitely moments of embarrassment (and those were cute as FUCK, like with Rit and her scarf), but generally they were very mature about each development. They knew they both wanted it, and just let their emotions take the steering wheel.
Honestly, the rest of the cast was decent as well and I liked their character designs, but there were a couple stand outs for me. There’s something about a kuudere like Ruti actually revealing their emotions. Like, when she finally reunited with Gideon, it just brought a smile to my face. And I actually enjoyed Tisse more than I expected. The contrast between her outward expression and inward turmoil over the littlest things was priceless. And Mr. Crawly Wawly, of course! The rest of the cast basically just filled their roles, for the most part. Nothing wrong with that, especially in what is technically slice of life anime, but can’t really make any meaningful commentary here.
The ‘Meh’ Stuff
Now for the not so good. I will preface this by saying it wasn’t AWFUL, but just not the biggest selling point for me. To me, the romance was better executed than this, thus the ‘meh’ section, rather than ‘bad’.
I could honestly probably sum this up by just saying the B-plot, or the action fantasy portion of this series, but wouldn’t be much of a review then, would it? Basically, most of the plot with the demons and the hero’s party just felt mediocre.
I liked the flashback portions a lot, but when the hero’s party actually came to Zoltan, it seemed like it fell apart. The scheming of the demons would also normally be fine, but it came off kind of… half-assed-feeling? I think the main factor here, actually was a pacing issue (as I’m finding to possibly be the leading cause of mediocrity in anime).
This could be extended to the whole anime, really. The first half felt smooth, with a good mix of flashback and slice of life. But, around when the hero’s party arrived in Zoltan looking for Ruti, it felt like plot elements were glossed over, resulting in some awkward and meaningless fights. Or how the demon’s plan didn’t seem to make a lot of sense, as if a few steps or explanations were missing. The fight between Ruti and Shisandan looked cool, sure, but the extremely brief fight between Alfred and Gideon actually FELT meaningful (and we got to see Gideon showing off his badassery).
Shin no Nakama ja Nai to Yuusha no Party wo Oidasareta node, Henkyou de Slow Life suru Koto ni Shimashita (holy balls, can we get an official abbreviation for this???) is definitely enjoyable, but you need to know what you’re getting into. The romantic plot is the real win here, with the fantasy adventure stuff being a bit lacking. I will say, it feels like that’s a failing of the adaptation rather than on the series creator, as the manga makes me actually care about the hero and demon plot lines more than the anime.
As long as you are looking for a cute romantic series with some fantasy elements, this series will be an enjoyable experience, and still worthy of my anticipated anime list. I just wish it had more time to pace things out properly, but it felt like it had to rush to a suitable conclusion for an anime. Too bad, but I do hope to see more, so they can flesh everything out more.
Okay, that’s all I’ve got. If you’ll excuse me, I think my hands are cramping from writing out that title. Catch you in the next one.