This week, Saihate no Paladin finally made Will an actual Paladin. Admittedly, that happened during the end credits and the lead up to it felt like a lot of talking heads. I guess it is all important set-up for the next step on the journey as the Prince and the Bishop argue about Will’s status as Knight or Priest and then Will posts an advertisement looking to recruit adventurers to defeat the demon boss in the woods, but it does all feel a little tedious and looking at the screen caps there’s a lot of people standing in rooms and talking.
Is the dramatic step to becoming a Paladin enough?
What actually makes this episode even more tedious is once again there’s a heavy reliance on Will’s internal monologue at times and as usual it adds little that wasn’t clearly apparent by watching the scene. The other problem of course being that if this was part of a longer work it would be the preparation before the adventure and it wouldn’t really warrant criticism but as a stand-alone twenty minute chunk it wasn’t great viewing.
I still don’t have much of a reading on the Prince. I mean, he doesn’t say no to Will and he does knight him, but he also clearly has his own agenda and he isn’t even subtle about making that known. More importantly, for all that Will internally makes his judgements on the Bishop known (not that they weren’t obvious from his actions) with the Prince we get nothing and then Will leaves the room so we don’t really know what his overall feeling about the situation is.
If Saihate no Paladin was going to rely so heavily on internal dialogue to convey a character’s impressions of others, that might have been a good time to use them.
Then we have Will’s recruitment of adventurers and apparently people who adventure to make a living aren’t what they are looking for.
Sure, go for the crazy and mad kind. That’ll end well.
Weirdly though it probably will. It always seems to in fiction where you get the recruits no one else seems to want to recruit.
Ultimately they aren’t even particularly clear on who Will has recruited other than one guy who the bard travelling with Will also wants to interview to write a song about. And sure, he seems strong but I’m kind of thinking Will needed more than one guy and there were others who said they would join but we learn nothing about them. Nothing at all. They barely even register as background characters.
There’s also a minor reminder about the purchasing of live stock that was part of Will and Menel’s original purpose in travelling to the city. And once again Will’s lack of business savvy is made clear.
Basically, I understand the necessity of the events that occur in this episode of Saihate no Paladin and the end of this episode certainly sets Will up for the next step in his journey as he is now a Paladin who has his own epic song being composed by a travelling bard (yeah, I get how that could become awkward). But at the same time, I didn’t find this episode particularly entertaining.
Here’s hoping the final two episodes are a bit more entertaining and I guess then we just have to hope that this one eventually gets a sequel because clearly the story isn’t going to be done. One might even argue that Will’s journey is still in its very early stages and there’s still miles to go.
You can read the full season review here.
Images from: Saihate no Paladin. Dir. Y. Nobuta. Children’s Playground Entertainment. 2021
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