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YMMV / The Rising of the Shield Hero

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  • Accidental Innuendo: Melty's first reaction upon seeing Filo is to say, "So big..."
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Now with its own page.
  • Broken Base: Fans are split on how Aultcray and Malty's trial was handled in the anime. There were those, especially fans of the source material, who argued that the choice to have Mirelia be the one who sent them to be executed removes her politically savvy side as well as making her seem much weaker of a ruler compared to the source material, and having Naofumi bail them out makes him seem like he's fully gotten over his issues, even though he later on still has to struggle with them. On the other hand, those who didn't mind argue that it showed that Naofumi has started to move past his anger, and that Mirelia is more interesting of a character because she has Conflicting Loyalty in regards to having to execute her husband and daughter when she doesn't fully want to.
  • Catharsis Factor:
    • After Malty and the King drag Naofumi's name through the mud and make his life a living hell, getting five consecutive chapters of their unadulterated public humiliation at the hands of the Queen—not the least of which involves her allowing Naofumi to legally change their names to "Bitch" and "Trash"—is a satisfying experience, to say the least.
    • The anime takes this a step further. Malty has a slave crest bound to her that prevents her from lying, and predictably, she gets shocked several times every time she does so, with the biggest shock (the one that knocks her on her ass) coming from the False Rape Accusation that began the entire story. To top it off, they change her adventurer's name from "Myne" to "Slut" (originally "Whore" in the Web Novel, but it has the same effect). Compared to the Web Novel, where the Queen gives Naofumi the idea of something different from the death penalty, this was all Naofumi's idea.
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    • Even better! When Malty begs for Motoyasu to come and save her, what does he do? He turns the other cheek, literally, and wised up to her at least for now. The look on her face when he does this is priceless.
    • What's better? An In-Universe example in Chapter 344 of the web novel, where Naofumi personally witnesses Malty's execution via burning alive at the stake.
    • The best part of all? Another In-Universe example that just adds another layer of satisfaction in Malty's suffering, and that's seeing Malty's true self, Medea Pideth Machina, get completely destroyed for good by her own power and subsequently erased permanently from existence in the web novel. The fact that no one in the universe gets to remember her in the aftermath is just satisfyingly priceless and Catharsis Factor at its finest.
  • Complete Monster:
    • Medea Pideth Machina is a sadistic goddess and the ultimate manipulator behind all of the villains in the story. Desiring ultimate power above all, Medea begins destroying 8 worlds to harness the energy of their inhabitants, all while using physical copies of herself to sow the seeds of distrust and chaos throughout the 8 worlds, simply because she enjoys hurting innocents. To compose herself an army, Medea revives and brainwashes the corpses of those killed through her machinations, with the psychopathic Tact being just one of her servants; Medea also has no care for this army, slaughtering them all when they fail her solely to hear them scream. In the end, Medea reveals her plans to extinguish all life in the universe one world at a time simply to boost her power level, before flying into a rage when beaten and simply trying to take down millions with her as she dies. A self-proclaimed sadist who committed her crimes for nothing but more power and always with glee, Medea was the root of every single evil in the story, something she proudly boasted of at every turn.
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    • The King of Faubley is a grotesque pig of a man who abuses his position to gain new "playthings". Threatening other countries to send him women, the King is a Serial Rapist who takes brides to rape and torture them to death, a fate so horrible that many prospective brides opt for suicide if possible. Upon receiving them, he proceeds to "play" with them and have them healed to continue the fun, having 9,999 brides that he has raped and murdered. When the evil Princess Malty Melromarc is sent to him, the hero Naofumi Iwatani cannot even watch the horrific recording of what the king does to her, despite Naofumi's hatred of Malty.
    • Raphtalia's former owner, named Idol Rabier in the anime, is a sadistic bigot towards demi-humans. After the first Wave of Calamity, he has a village of surviving demi-humans attacked, slaughtering the adults and enslaving the children. Rabier regularly tortured his slaves, causing several of them to die from his treatment of them. Seeking to kill the wanted Naofumi to look like a hero, Rabier tortures Van Reichnott to try and find Naofumi's location, and attempts to do the same to Princess Melty afterwards. Upon being cornered by Raphtalia, Rabier begs for his life to be spared; when Raphtalia grants this request in the anime, Rabier tries to kill her anyway. With the last of his strength, Rabier releases a monster sealed within the town and orders it to destroy everything in sight, willing to put countless lives at risk all to gain glory by killing Naofumi.
  • Critical Dissonance: Many critics downright loathed the anime from the very first episode, detesting the well-known controversial key plot development that sets up the rest of the series. The fact it was an isekai anime, a genre heavily associated with male wish fulfillment which is extremely popular among viewers but not so much among critics, likely didn't help at all. In fact, critics hated the series so much some even named it among their worst anime of the season. In stark contrast, anime fans and casual viewers loved the series, with the result it went to become possibly the biggest hit of 2019: it was reportedly the most continuously watched anime that year, spawned some of the year's most popular anime memes and a couple of its most beloved anime girls, and its user scores on most fan sites remain high even today. In fact, as it can be guessed, the controversial plot point ended up being precisely part of why the series attracted so much attention.
  • Critic-Proof: The anime was troublesome with critics to the point of being panned, but it was so successful that it got an unusual announcement of two additional seasons after the first season concluded.
  • Crossover Ship: Fans believe Ren would likely find a kindred spirit in Kirito, due to the similarities in their character and their lives, both were alone on Christmas, both slayed a dragon and both know what it's like to lose their whole party.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: The World of Jerkass setting, the complete ineptitude of the other heroes, as well as the fact that the bad guys often pull a Karma Houdini (well, until much later), can make the viewers simply unable to care about what's happening to the main characters. Even if the series eventually offers Naofumi some much needed respite, this only happens well into the series, which makes it hard for the viewer to keep their interest until it comes.
  • Draco in Leather Pants:
    • Ren gets this the most of the other three Cardinal heroes. It helps that he is the most altruistic and noble hero after Naofumi and the only one who is consistently nice to Naofumi. The fact he is the only one besides Naofumi to value his teammates is a factor as well.
    • Itsuki also gets this treatment, though not as much as Ren, thanks to being less annoying and perverted than Motoyasu.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse: Out of the other three Legendary Heroes, Ren Amaki is by far the one who is the most liked, having the most altruistic qualities of the three and being a Token Good Teammate of sorts. It also helps that he's been memetically compared to Kirito and even sharing the same voice actor.
  • Fandom Rivalry: It has one in the form of Kamen Rider Saber, due to its themes revolving around a group of Knights and it's fantasy setting. Not that help matters that the subplot involving the titular rider was being branded a traitor by the resident Bitch in Sheep's Clothing is similar to how Naofumi was being accused by Malty despite of his innocence.
  • Friendly Fandoms: Gets some of this with Sword Art Online, thanks to the similarities between Ren and Kirito.
  • Foe Yay: Naofumi and L'Arc Berg have shown to be capable of getting along pretty well, if only they weren't on opposing sides.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: In this series, the characters voiced by Billy Kametz and Erica Mendez are close allies. Shortly after this, Kametz would be cast in Aggretsuko season 2, where his character goes out of his way to antagonize Mendez’s.
  • Ho Yay: Motoyasu and Naofumi in Spear Hero, dear lord. As this is a timeline with a much more innocent Naofumi and a much different Motoyasu (i.e. he can only see women as pigs from the get-go this time instead of at the end of his Trauma Conga Line), he becomes fiercely protective of Naofumi and seems to have quite the man crush on him. The 2019 April Fool's Day short story even throws a nod to this, as its heroine is an avid slash shipper specifically of Spear Hero's version of Motoyasu/Naofumi.
  • Idiot Plot:
    • The other three heroes treat their situation as a game rather than a matter of life and death, never considering the possible ramifications of their actions and frequently causing more trouble than they solve, and in Motoyasu's case, never questioning the acts of Malty despite several instances of her true nature shining through (her interference in Naofumi's and Motoyasu's duel, her attempting to kill Melty after Naofumi "kidnapped" her). The idiocy of the other heroes causes much of the drama later on, but it can be quite absurd at the sheer lengths they go to in being idiots that it can detract a bit from the story at times.
    • Myne already had a reputation in the kingdom as a troublemaker before she met Naofumi. You'd think that the citizenry would be a bit more hesitant to believe her accusations, especially given that in this case those were strictly based on her word alone.
    • The King's actions are terribly shortsighted. There's the summoning of all four heroes to Melromarc (an act that threatened to start a major war with the rest of the world), the persecution of Naofumi (which, in addition to ignoring the necessity of needing his support to fight the Waves, further risked war with the Demi-human nations who view the Shield Hero as a god), not to mention the fact that doing so grossly overstepped his bounds as regent (failing to recognize that the Queen would not be happy with him upon her return).
  • Informed Wrongness: The three other heroes not believing in Naofumi during his False Rape Accusation is treated as them being idiots who are easy to manipulate, but within the context presented, it comes across as this trope for some. For starters, they only have known each other for at most a few days, so they have no idea what each of them are really like. Thus when Myne tells them Naofumi assaulted her, they have no way to know she's lying since they weren't there, and don't know anything about Naofumi or Myne to think otherwise. Plus, they just received help from the king, and while we learn he is a terrible person, they don't know that yet, so it isn't like they have a reason to accuse the king or Myne of lying at that moment, or knowing they are leading a conspiracy to ruin the Shield Hero. They unquestionably should have tried to let Naofumi defend himself, but Naofumi also proceeds to snap and rant at the king and Myne when he realizes Myne is lying, which doesn't help his situation either, and Naofumi doesn't try to explain to them later what happened. The fact the next time they all meet up with the king, and Itsuki and Ren call out the king and Myne for cheating in Naofumi and Motoyasu's duel, shows that had they been given more context and/or information, they likely would have supported Naofumi.
  • Iron Woobie:
    • Iwatani Naofumi is a college student who, after reading a mysterious book, gets unwillingly transported to a fantasy world as one of four heroes tasked with saving the world. As the Shield Hero, Naofumi dreamed of adventuring and having a harem. However, he soon after was looked down upon for the shield's lack of offensive power, and is outright demonized by the people of the country, leading him to be shunned wherever he goes. With no one to help him, Naofumi must find a way to complete his mission and finally return home. Unable to use anything else in battle, he finds himself having to fist fight against monsters. His low attack stats make even weak monsters take minutes to kill, while someone with a sword can cut them within two slashes. Naofumi had no party members until a girl offers to go with him, and he feels his luck turn around until she steals his clothes and all his money, then lies that he raped her. From then on, no one wanted anything to do with him, and his hero status is the only thing keeping him from being executed. This hit him so hard he can't even taste food anymore, and he cannot leave this world until all four heroes stop the calamity that hits it at regular intervals. All he could do is buy slaves who can fight for him on the battlefield, but to them he's like an older brother/father figure. Out of his shields, he has one that reflects attacks, but it erodes his soul with each use.
    • At a young age, Raphtalia's village was attacked by monsters that came from the very first Wave, and her parents and many villagers perished. She was captured afterwards by slavers, and spent a period of time living under one owner to the next. All treated her horribly. After a while, she was bought by a slaver, and kept with the rest of his slaves until she was finally purchased by Naofumi. From then on, she served as his right hand, fighting against the waves, using illusion magic as well as swordsmanship, in order to prevent a repeat of her past from happening to anyone else. She does her best to help and serve Naofumi, as well as be a benevolent sister figure among their younger allies.
    • Glass comes from a parallel world like Naofumi's group. Initially seen as antagonistic when she crosses swords with him and his party, it turns out that by 'invading' their world, she is really trying to save her own. Her people are besieged by calamities just like Melromarc and all the other countries. In her world, she's a Hero just like Naofumi, and her sworn duty is to protect that world over anything else. She respects and sympathizes with Naofumi, but she knows that he could obstruct her objective, and with millions of lives at risk, she cannot afford that. Her solution to stopping the calamity is killing off the Legendary Heroes of Raphtalia's world as a last-ditch effort and her home is already on the verge of collapse, with most of its people already giving in. She also struggles with inner turmoil, and she tries to keep it under wraps, but everyone can tell how much she's breaking on the inside. Despite all that, Glass is resigned to do her worst in order to preserve whatever's left of her home world.
  • Jerks Are Worse Than Villains: Part of the reason people want the other heroes dead, or at least stripped of their powers is constant mistreatment of Naofumi, even after his name is clear and he helped save their lives. In one popularity poll, Balmus and Malty out-ranked both Itsuki and Motoyasu. Part of the reason Ren is the most popular of them is that he is nicer to Naofumi then them.
  • Just Here for Godzilla:
    • For Raphtalia. Latecomers became interested in the show after hearing all the attention over the Raccoon Waifu.
    • Filo had a similar treatment with people curious about the Bird Loli that was all the talk.
  • Launcher of a Thousand Ships: Naofumi gets paired up with about 97% percent of the female cast, with plenty of canon subtext making shipping pretty easy, as well as a few male characters.
  • Love to Hate: Princess Malty starts the series by falsely accusing Naofumi of rape, ruining his life. From that point onward, she proceeds to commit even more despicable actions throughout the series. This is before she's revealed to be part of an inter-dimensional Omnicidal Maniac goddess who has destroyed several dimensions prior. Despite this, she is often "liked" by some fans who feel that the series would not be half as interesting without her.
  • Memetic Loser: The other three Cardinal Heroes will never live down just how bad they are at their jobs. Especially Motoyasu, due to how he is unable to realize how clearly evil Malty and the Church are.
  • Memetic Mutation:
    • Captain America would like to have a word. note 
    • Goblin Slayer 2: Electric Boogaloo note 
    • The author is a woman. note 
    • Dadfumi note 
    • Something's rising and it isn't the Shield Hero.note 
      • Sarapthalia note 
    • Tail wag note 
    • Adobe Crystal Pro note 
  • Misaimed Fandom: Quite a few people feel that the other three heroes deserve to die for how just plain bad they are at being heroes, or for how badly they treat Naofumi with flimsy justification. The three are certainly very flawed characters, as they are clearly built to show what can transpire when those chosen to be saviors happen to be prejudiced, unemphatic, and morally mediocre people. However, they are not meant to be considered irredeemable, but rather the opposite; if they did end up being killed in revenge, the world would be doomed and they wouldn't get the chance to improve as people to actually become the heroes they were chosen to become. Naofumi himself is even shown being overly hostile and aggressive towards them as well like some fans were, and the series goes to show that, while they can be idiots, having them die is a terrible idea.
  • Moe: Filo and child Raphtalia are known for melting the hearts of even the most hardened viewers. Melty as well, with her Tsundere characteristics and her love for the Filorials.
  • Moral Event Horizon:
    • For King Melromarc, his entire treatment of the Shield Hero is seen as this In-Universe. It takes over 300 chapters and the deaths of several major characters for him to finally own up to it. At first, it seems he crossed it with his despicable treatment of Naofumi, but then it turns out he flew right past it with his adamant hatred of demi-humans in Melromarc when he ordered a district torn down right after they finished repairing everything following the first wave. For bonus points, it was the district Raphtalia grew up in, so half her tragic backstory involving her enslavement and mistreatment was a direct result of his actions.
    • In the anime, he delivers a heavily Implied Death Threat towards Naofumi's companions. What makes it this trope is the fact that he's basically threatening to put two children (Raphtalia chronologically) to death out of pure spite towards someone who never even wronged him personally (rape accusation aside, but then again it should be painfully obvious by that point that Malty was lying), simply because the latter refuses to take any more of his unjustified crap anymore. Thankfully, he's cowed into backing off when Naofumi swears to end him if he's ever stupid enough to make the attempt.
    • As for his daughter Malty, in addition to the betrayal of Naofumi that began the whole plot, it is stated in the light novel that she crossed this long ago when she made the same false rape accusations on other men before Naofumi, and they didn't have the immunity to the death penalty that he did, making her not only a serial liar and manipulator but a Serial Killer.
  • Narm: The otherwise serious and intense trial in episode 21 of the anime is somewhat made less serious and more comedic by the choice of placing Male Gaze on Malty thanks to the Queen putting a slave brand on her chest to get the truth from her. What are supposed to be serious moments are hard to take seriously when the anime makes it look vaguely erotic. There's also a moment near the end of the episode where Malty gets hit with Gainaxing, except its right as she is being forced down to be executed. The moment is brief but enough to garner a chuckle at what was, again, supposed to be serious drama.
  • No Such Thing as Bad Publicity: Let's face it, the main reason why most people have heard of Shield Hero in the first place is because of the scene where Naofumi gets falsely accused of rape and the subsequent controversy.
  • One True Threesome: Or foursome. The Four Cardinal Heroes occasionally get paired together.
  • Ron the Death Eater: Motoyasu and Itsuki get this treatment due to how utterly annoying and detestable they are.
  • Self-Fanservice: The dearth of shirtless scenes lead to some fan art depicting the Four Cardinal Heroes as having a decent Heroic Build (usually justified by all the fighting they've been through).
  • Shipping Goggles: The less-than-friendly canon interactions between Naofumi and the other Cardinal Heroes leads to people shipping them either for irony or because it would arguably be an improvement over their actual relationships, or just for the sake of shipping itself.
  • Signature Scene:
    • The False Rape Accusation and its aftermath. This was what drew the series itself into the mainstream spotlight while establishing that this is not your run-of-the-mill Trapped in Another World Light Novel series.
    • The scene where Naofumi renames Malty and King Melromac to Bitch/Slut and Trash respectively has been coming the whole first season.
  • Theme Pairing: Despite all the animosity between them, The Four Cardinal Heroes get shipped together. To be fair, virtually all of the previous generations of the The Four Cardinal Heroes are implied to have been on good terms, with Naofumi's generation being something of an anomaly in that regard. It helps that unlike Motoyasu and Itsuki, Ren is somewhat less problematic to deal with directly.note 
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!:
    • The removal of Naofumi's Kick the Dog moments and thoughts from the early part of the story has not been liked by many fans of the light novel. The appeal of Naofumi early on in the light novel was that he was a Byronic Hero who despite being falsely accused of a crime, was still a flawed character who would do things like buy a slave to fight for him and even hope she gets hurt to feel satisfied at the thought of a woman being hurt to get back at Myne. The anime downplays almost all the elements that made him a firm Anti-Hero and instead paint him as a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who is just really grumpy. Since his thoughts can't be projected as well in the anime as well, a lot of Naofumi's internal thoughts and logic go unmentioned, and make him more cliché then he was initially supposed to be. The choice to have Naofumi be the one to argue in favor of sparing Malty and King Aultcray, whereas in the original story he wanted them executed but the Queen managed to calm him down and argue in favor of stripping them of their royal status and humiliating them, was also very badly received by fans of the original series too, since it turned Naofumi into a downright good guy instead of a sympathetic but still harsh protagonist.
    • Episode 15 was criticized by those who read the light novel, for removing Raphtalia stabbing the noble and throwing him out the window and instead replacing it with her choosing to spare him (citing that she would become no better than him if she killed him), followed by the noble trying to attack Raphtalia, who retaliates by stabbing him with her magic sword, causing him to trip on the whip he dropped and fall out a window. Fans pointed out the flawed morality of the scene, as the noble had tortured and killed countless Demis before and showed no sign of repenting, while his high-class status would make it unlikely that he'd actually face justice even if his crimes were exposed, meaning that his death at Raphtalia's hands would have been perfectly justified. While both versions do end up being the same in terms of outcome, it seems the change was made to avoid Raphtalia looking cruel since she is supposed to be a Morality Chain to Naofumi, but the change results in Raphtalia losing a moment of major development (as well as a moment of catharsis for the audience) instead.
    • Removing Medea Pideth Machina from the other sources. As mentioned in the character page Medea is the one who causes the waves to begin with and is Malty's creator. Removing her will drastically change the final arc and cause big Plot Holes.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character:
    • The party members of the other Heroes go unnamed and have almost no characterization or lines in the series. This is despite them being somewhat important given their supporting the various Heroes and have stakes in protecting the world. Excluding Malty, Motoyasu has one party member who gets named and plays a minor role, and none of Ren's party get any screen time or characterization besides being loyal to him before being all wiped out. The only party that has any significance is Itsuki's, and that's because they turn into antagonists later. While the series has a lot of characters, the lack of any time getting to know anything about them results in them coming across as odd given how much important stuff they end up being involved with.
    • The small band of soldiers that join Naofumi during the Third Wave. All of them appear beforehand to help him because they believe he is a hero, which seems to be setting up Naofumi forming a larger party, or at the very least, getting a group of people who would join him over the plot. Despite this setup, the characters are barely used during the Third Wave as they stay behind to fight monsters, and they vanish from the plot after the Wave ends. Given how they were all willing to join him, it wastes a small but still notable group of potentially interesting characters, especially as they could have become allies in the following arc when Naofumi is accused of kidnapping Melty, and either stayed in the party, or help out when needed. Its also odd because they show how some people are turning their opinions around of Naofumi, but this idea isn't explored much either.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot:
    • Having a party made of people from different versions of Earth could have been an interesting idea for an isekai in of itself, however because the Legendary Weapons innately inhibit each other's experience gain when in close proximity, the heroes have to form their own independent parties from natives of the world they're now in.
    • The plot point that Demi-humans age as they level is an interesting idea that is only used one time in the story, that being Raphtalia. For starters it raises a moral question of what happens if you train them for battle since they are, even if physically adults, still children in age, turning them into Child Soldiers who may end up growing up quickly without the chance to have a normal childhood. Plus it makes for an interesting source of drama; what if there are Demi-humans who don't want to grow up suddenly and want to grow up normally (if something like that is possible)? Plus you have someone like Raphtalia who ages up quickly while being a slave, surely there would be some kind of psychological effects of basically going from a child, to becoming a weapon for someone even if that person ends up becoming a decent person. Sadly as mentioned, only Raphtalia is put through this plot point and no other Demi-human's on screen age like her, making it come across as a quick way to have Raphtalia grow up so she can become a strong fighter and also be the series main attraction. Characters like Filo never age despite leveling, and it is never discussed again in any meaningful way.
    • Early on, Naofumi buying Raphtalia is given some heavy criticism by other characters for being morally wrong, and the story actually has Naofumi prior to this being a jerk to her before he softens up. Once Naofumi gets over his initial anger filled state, the story never works to have him resolve this plot point, and many characters just never mention it again despite it being a valid criticism of his character. While Raphtalia choses to freely become a slave again, some find it to be a wasted chance to develop Naofumi better by having him decide against her doing so since it would make the two seem more health as a pair, and also avoid any uncomfortable implications the story brings up by doing so.
  • Unintentionally Sympathetic: Crosses with Informed Wrongness. Many of the series' critics have noted that while Motoyasu isn't necessarily a likable, sympathetic or unproblematic character by any means, he's the character who most vocally takes issue with Naofumi owning people as slaves and using them to fight dangerous battles for him, stating such things to be despicable and unethical for one who calls himself a hero to engage in even if it's not illegal. While we're meant to see him as ignorant and unreasonable in his judgment of Naofumi as a terrible person, Motoyasu is viewing how things appear to be between Naofumi and his slaves from an outside perspective and is drawing the conclusions most people would, and reacting accordingly.
  • Unintentionally Unsympathetic:
    • Naofumi in the beginning. He may have gotten a raw deal, he may have had to make some grey choices in order to survive, but the way he trains Raphtalia in the early days of their relationship would make him a villain if he wasn't the main character. Especially since the main reason he purchased her wasn't due to her being all he could afford but more so that he could have a surrogate to take out his anger against Myne on, even hoping she gets hurt in the course of his ownership of her. There's also the fact that by purchasing Raphtalia, he's essentially doing the exact same thing the king did to him, being forced to fight against one's own will. To an extent, this was something of an Intended Audience Reaction, but it still makes it hard to sympathize with him no matter how much the narrative may try to do so.
    • As shown in Misaimed Fandom above, all three cardinal heroes, particularly Motoyasu and Itsuki after they fall to their Curse series and subsequent Heel–Face Turn. While it's made explicitly clear that every one of their screw-ups is on them and they are not meant to be sympathetic for the messes they create, the narration tries to prove that they are not beyond redemption. However, their constant bullying of Naofumi, disregard for the innocent lives their supposed to protect, and refusal to learn leaves a sour taste in the audience's mouth, especially when they cause a world-wide disaster and still don't own up to it until they're individually subdued. Combined with Motoyasu's creepy pedophilic tendencies towards Filo and Itsuki's overbearing arrogance, many would rather see the heroes dead than redeemed. The only one who doesn't fully fall into this is Ren, as he has sympathetic traits to balance out his Jerkass tendencies, and even then he can be just as self-centered and Lethally Stupid when he teams up with the other two.
  • Viewer Species Confusion: Raphtalia's animal features are often mistaken to be a raccoon's by western fans, leading to the nickname "Raccoon Waifu". She's actually supposed to be part Tanuki ("raccoon dog" in English), an animal which isn't the same as a raccoon despite looking similar.
  • Wangst: Naofumi's bitterness and cynicism can come across as overblown and pointless for some viewers due to his one-track mind.
  • What an Idiot!:
    • Naofumi in regards to his Only in It for the Money reaction to helping the general populace. It makes sense that he can't save the world with thanks and gratitude alone, but he also worsens his own reputation by dismissing the attitudes of the people he meets, a point which Raphtalia has to actually tell him in order for him to stop.
    • Naofumi thinking the middle of a battlefield is a good place to start throwing out "The Reason You Suck" Speech. All he does is start a petty squabble among the Heroes when they should be focusing on the defeating the Pope and saving any moralizing speeches for afterward. The Pope is able to easily recharge his weapon without any opposition and notes how stupid it was for them to start fighting among themselves in the face of an enemy.
  • The Woobie: Rino was a nice girl who only wanted to join Motoyasu's party... only for Malty and Lesty to sell her into slavery on a whim. Once she returns, she's evolved into an Iron Woobie who's out for Malty's blood as one of the Queen's newest spies.

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