How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Series Review – Making Ruling Look Almost Effortless

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Series Review

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom isn’t the first fantasy anime to shift the focus from overpowered individuals with glowing attacks hacking at each other to more mundane issues such as economics and politics. Over the years there’s been a number of these type of anime and they have varying amounts of success. Probably my favourite was Maoyu Maou Yuusha and even that one was incomplete without a follow-up season and the tone felt all over-the-place.

Realist Hero - Episode 1

Basically the premise of How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom is that the kingdom of Elfrieden, being strapped for cash, summons a hero to offer as a tribute to the overall war effort of the empire against a demon army. Which sounds pretty ordinary and you kind of expect we’re going to see our hero go off to war. But, basically other than one flashback memory from one character we’re never even going to see a demon. Because Kazuya Souma, our summoned hero, decides that a better option to help Elfrieden is to put into place a range of administrative reforms.

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom more or less does exactly what it says on the label.

What follows could have been a hard hitting and serious political drama filled with clever negotiations between characters with nuanced motives… but it isn’t.

The biggest problem for How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom is it wants to explore more serious and grounded issues than your standard isekai fantasy but it also wants to appeal to the audience that just wants fun and adventure. So what you’ll get is watered down and simplified economic, political and war theory being explained by the 19-year-old protagonist (who naturally remembers all these ideas from a range of disciplines) to dullards who all fall all over themselves to tell him how amazing he is.

Seriously, even the King abdicates his throne after knowing the guy for less than a month.

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom

He doesn’t take Souma on as an advisor or put him in charge of a region or anything sensible. Simply hands over his throne to a perfect stranger and then spends the few scenes he appears in after that getting his ears cleaned by his wife.

It doesn’t help that the only other character introduced that even seems to have a smidgen of a thought process going on in his head ends up being more or less a background character who reports stuff to Souma but never does really anything. I’m kind of hoping the second season gives Hakuya more to do given the introduction he got and that he was the most potentially interesting character of the bunch introduced here but has very little screen time.

Realist Hero - Souma and Hakuya

We’ll also get spoof of a cooking show and even an idol concert along the way. There will be an internal war but it doesn’t pay to take that conflict seriously and the series will climax with an idiot from another kingdom invading and our realist hero having to take on an external threat. Then the whole show will introduce a new character and just kind of stop. A good thing we already have a second season announced.


Affiliate Link

Live a Live – RPG Game

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom seems to want to have its cake and eat it too but basically comes out feeling half baked. Too many characters that get too little time to really be fleshed out much like the more serious concepts it wants to explore but it never wants anything to go against the protagonist so nothing ever feels like a challenge.

Realist Hero Episode 11

It introduces a raft of cute female characters though most of them end up feeling superfluous. We have the Princess Liscia, who Souma was kind of betrothed to but they’ve called that off, and Souma has more or less promised to turn the kingdom back over to her at some point but she doesn’t really want that… Liscia started out pretty fiery and interesting but quickly fizzled to be the companion who simply asks questions and allows the protagonist to explain things aloud without talking to himself.

Juna fairs a little better as the songstress and she remains a bit of a tease for Souma. She also actually gets involved in some of the political shenanigans along the way. As for Aisha, her character is all over the place and seems to exist just to react to things and occasionally hit them.

Realist Hero Episode 8

Ultimately, How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom is a pleasant enough watch even if it all ends up feeling a bit easy and pointless. The visuals are pleasing and the opening song is entertaining enough. Most of the characters are either pleasant or the usual kind of tropes you would expect. There’s some decent enough plot points along the way even if none of them are really given much depth.

About the worst thing you could say for Realist Hero is it is all a bit forgettable because they haven’t committed to a particular idea or really taken themselves seriously at all. It is all light and frothy which is fine for slice of life but doesn’t seem to do the underlying premise here justice.

The thing is, I’ll probably watch the second season because this wasn’t a bad way to pass a season but honestly, there’s better isekai stories out there so I’m hardly jumping up and down to recommend this one.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 13 Impressions – And Stop

Realist Hero Episode 13

Realist Hero is another isekai story that simply stops because we’re out of episodes.

It’s hard not to be disappointed in the ending of Realist Hero when episode 13 introduces the sister of the leader of the empire who has made her way to Van to negotiate with Souma. However none of that happens yet because we spend the episode discussing another food with Poncho before going shopping with Juna and Tomoe.

Realist Hero Episode 13

Actually, the most tension this episode manages, and it is a season final, is when Liscia is all pouty because all the other girls get presents and then Souma hands her a necklace.

Needless to say, this final episode of Realist Hero feels just like every other episode and is watchable enough but doesn’t remotely feel like the end of a season. Even with a second season potentially coming, I’m not sure that makes it okay to not even attempting something resembling pacing or a climax for a season end.

Realist Hero episode 13

Still, if you viewers were expecting anything else from this then they really haven’t paid attention to the way this season of Realist Hero has unfolded. It really does just kind of coast along and while there are moments that could offer dramatic tension they are always diluted by diversion (usually involving singing or food).

All things considered though, there’s a number of plot points revisited in this final episode so there is some sense of closure.

For instance we do find out more about why Souma was summoned in the first place. Equally we see the Princess of the Kingdom of Amidonia still conspiring with the treasury guy though we’ve yet to really gain any understanding about what her goals are. We also do finally have an encounter between Souma and the Empire so there’s lots of plot threads that come together for this final episode even if they don’t actually result in any decisive outcome – yet.

Realist Hero Episode 13

Honestly, I didn’t find the ending of this anime anywhere near as jarring or annoying as Seirei Gensouki but realistically it isn’t all that much better. Probably the only real advantage this anime has is that the pacing all the way along has felt smoother so while the story isn’t concluded we did get kind of climax last week when Souma’s army overcame the King of Amidonia and this episode feels more like wrapping up loose ends and ensuring we are reminded of the pertinent players.

That said, the episode itself is pretty ho-hum and honestly I’m already moving on and I haven’t even finished writing the review for it yet. That isn’t the best way for a series to finish, particularly one that wants me to pick it up again when it airs its second season.

Realist Hero Episode 13

I will review the full series soon but I’d love to know your thoughts on Realist Hero.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 12 Impressions – Souma’s Easy Victory Continued

Realist Hero Episode 12 Review

Villains in Realist Hero always seem to resort to surrender or charge.

While no real challenges presented themselves as our Realist Hero and interim king, Souma, mopped up the last of the enemy army, allowed the Prince and a small contingent to escape, and then proceeded to put on a live idol show for the citizens of the city he essentially conquered, they did at least shake things up this episode by having to have more than one attempt at taking down the enemy king.

Realist Hero Episode 12

While the two dukes in episode 11 more or less capitulated with little real resistance, the king this week was not going down without a fight. And for him it was a fight to the death. Though at least his character finally got to make one decent decision which was to send his son away from the battlefield before the end.

Stabbed, burned and then shot full of arrows.

In what seemed like the easiest victory yet, as the king charged toward our Realist Hero’s vantage point, the blonde guy did a beautiful leap through the air on his horse and skewered the king with his spear right through his armour. It looked as magnificent as it could in slow motion and bare bones animation even if I was left wondering how the poor horse managed to save itself from shattered legs on the landing.

Turns out though that we finally had a small wrinkle in the plans. The King had a body double.

Realist Hero - death of a king

The real king continues his charge and is confronted by Carla who has decided she needs to save Souma because otherwise Liscia would be unhappy. I mean, there’s entire cities and the lives of soldiers and citizens alike on the line, but sure, save Souma because of one Princess being unhappy. Whatever motive gets you moving.

Still, we always knew our Realist Hero wasn’t a warrior and here it becomes clear as Carla doesn’t have the strength to drive the king back and Souma certainly isn’t directly entering the fray. Instead we go with an explosive puppet and boy does that go off with a bang.

How the King was still standing, I do not know, but artful job with the destruction of his clothing on that one.

As he throws his sword and gives his last words he’s plugged full of arrows from archers who were somewhere during all of this (why didn’t they shoot at him when he was sparring with Carla). At last he falls.

Realist Hero Episode 12

And just like that the war is done.

Enter the throne room and Souma is making plans but knows that the Empire isn’t going to recognise him taking over the city anyway. Rather than get into the politics of it he’ll grab some singers and put on an idol show for the citizens.

This is where Realist Hero always loses me. We have some fairly complex political and economic quandaries but earlier in the series we had a reality style cooking show and now we’re going with idols. The tone is all over the place and honestly it isn’t doing Realist Hero any favours.

Realist Hero - the idol show

If I wanted a light comedy I wouldn’t be watching this particular story but this story also doesn’t quite go hard or serious enough to be good as a serious drama. It just kind of teeters around the middle of a few tones and genres but never quite commits and the end result is a little less than satisfying even though there are some good ideas and moments strewn along here.

Anyway, potential arrival of the empire next week and I guess we’ll see where Realist Hero (the anime) intends to leave us.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 11 Impressions – Souma’s Easy Victory

Realist Hero Episode 11

Does Having a Bad Plan for a Good Reason, Make it a Good Plan?

Our realist hero, Souma, in the space of a twenty minute episode, takes over the air-force, has Duke Carmine surrender and removes all the corrupt nobles from play, and moves his army to the south to first cause the invaders to hurry back to their own kingdom straight through an ambush before occupying an enemy city. Wow, Souma’s amazing.

Realist Hero Episode 11

So let’s break down each of these three ‘conflicts’ that Souma’s kind of just walked through as if they were nothing. And while I get, they are trying to position Souma as someone who thinks things through and strategizes and has back-up plans, mostly his enemies are just looking really stupid.

A Realist Hero Takes the Air Force

Episode 10 saw the start of this battle with Souma and his forces using an entire battle-ship crossing the land as a decoy (cool move). This week Castor, leader of the forces, takes on Souma (or at least Souma’s harem) and in a fight that is actually kind of cool to watch loses soundly.

Then again, Castor was only ever following Carmine and honestly, of everyone involved in this war, Castor seems to have the least stakes, purpose, or thought processes. He doesn’t seem to want anything and yet still doesn’t surrender when given a chance to do so.

Realist Hero Episode 11 - Duke Castor

So our Realist Hero wraps up this fight, takes control of the air force, also brings Castor’s daughter Carla along for the ride (wearing a shiny new slave collar – and why do so many isekai anime have slave collars), and heads to the battle against Duke Carmine.

The Duke’s Position

This is where the words bad plan don’t even begin to express my feelings about Duke Carmine’s actions.

Incidentally, plot spoiler below if you haven’t watched the episode, but it doesn’t make a great deal of sense anyway.

Realist Hero Episode 11 - Duke Carmine

Carmine opposed Souma, without discussing it with Souma, in order to have all the corrupt noble men gather under him. Thus he could ensure that they were positioned as insurrectionists as all be removed in one fell swoop.

Which, on the surface doesn’t sound too bad except for the part where he could have actually communicated that idea to Souma rather than just ignoring the new king.

Furthermore, he let the nobles spend their hidden money on hiring mercenaries, sending money out of the kingdom, because once the mercenaries were captured they could ransom them back…

Realist Hero Episode 11

It could just be me but I’m sure the Realist Hero Souma could have found a far more logical way to go about getting this money. You know, encouraging the nobles to pay the duke directly as a war fund for hiring of mercenaries who just didn’t arrive (because the duke never hired them). Then the money would just stay in the kingdom in the first place.

Anyway, on Souma taking the air force, Carmine rounds up the corrupt nobles, something he could have done ages ago, and then puts a slave collar on himself and surrenders. Souma doesn’t even have a conversation with him because he’s off to war front number 3.

Don’t Upset the Realist Hero

Souma may just be an acting King but he is taking his duties seriously. The Kingdom of Amidonia has invaded Elfrieden during their moment of internal crisis and not only is Souma not letting that stand, he’s pretty much making them an example to anyone else who might try to take on the weakened Kingdom.

Realist Hero - Episode 11 - Declaration of War

It’s a sensible move from the Realist Hero when you consider how the other kingdoms who might threaten Elfrieden will view this situation, only it leaves me wondering where this common sense was when he more or less promoted the first guy he heard talking about betraying him.

That said, this conflict at least isn’t completely wrapped up, but given they took out half of the opposing forces in transit and the replacements are hardly trained soldiers, and they are already occupying the city, it seems unlikely Souma is going to lose this fight.

I guess, the only question remaining is how does this resolve? it isn’t as though the other human kingdoms are going to let Elfrieden conquer their neighbours without raising an eyebrow. Or do we end up with the cute and sassy Princess character becoming a hostage in Elfrieden to ensure Amidonia’s good behaviour?

Realist Hero has 2 episodes to figure it out so I guess we’ll see.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 10 Impressions – War on Three Fronts

Realist Hero Episode 10

Reality Bites

The war has finally happened and Souma is outmanned but not out imagined as he defends his borders and takes the fight to one of the Dukes. Our Realist Hero at least has the advantage of surprise and also apparently being a tactical genius because he read books before being summoned to another world (because somehow that gives your average Japanese citizen the ability to command forces on multiple fronts).

Actually, the war itself was kind of interesting. What was less impressive was the animation. This episode of How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom was definitely looking very ordinary with a lot of stills with some shaking over the top and some voice over shouting to give the impression of some kind of movement. It wasn’t quite as bad as the final of The Promised Neverland season 2. Actually if anything this episode was reminding me of Lord Marksman and Vanadis with less fun characters.

Realist Hero Episode 10

What is a Realist Hero to do?

The episode starts with the invasion of the kingdom by the idiot from the south. I think he was from a southern kingdom at least. Anyway, his big plan is stand outside a city and look menacing, intimidate the messenger, and then accept delay tactics that are obviously just in place while some other plot is developed. Yep, he’s an idiot.

It really does make it hard to appreciate Souma’s natural genius in Realist Hero when all his opponents are so pedestrian in their motives and actions.


Affiliate Link

Live a Live – RPG Game

Not that this anime has proclaimed Souma a genius but given the breadth of his knowledge from agriculture to finance, economic and political reform, and now military tactics one has to assume as much. As much as most of his theories and ideas have been pretty basic from each of those fields, as I said it is the range of knowledges he’s demonstrated that are starting to make me tilt my head and wonder if he’s got an encyclopaedia stores inside his skull.

Souma surprising his enemy once again - Realist Hero Episode 10

With the external enemy more or less on hold for a day, Souma still has to deal with Duke Carmine who commands 40,000 men to his 10,000 and he also has the Red Dragon and the airforce to deal with.

Rather than simultaneously fighting on the three fronts, he’s delayed one, uses a fortress to hold up Duke Carmine’s forces, and the attack goes toward the air-force.

All of which makes sense but it also all goes pretty smoothly as he seemingly surprises and overwhelms his enemy at every step.

Realist hero Episode 10

I would however be remiss if I didn’t point out that the setting for the third act in this episode, Souma actually launching his first attack rather than defending or holding a position, was very cool. The full moon and dark sky behind the giant war ship as it rolls across the landscape toward its target, launching long range attacks upon the city was a very impressive sight. Perhaps the best the episode had to offer.

That it was also not the main attack in the end just adds to the overall impression because that much effort put into a diversionary tactic has to be appreciated.

Realist Hero episode 10
Okay, these two didn’t appreciate it.

Honestly, this was about as much as I could have hoped for from this episode of Realist Hero after the declaration of war last week. While I would have preferred better animation and potentially at least one of these three enemies to put up a more interesting fight, this episode still managed to be entertaining enough.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

My Experience Following Two Light Novels Turned Into Anime This Summer Season: Realist Hero and Seirei Gensouki

light novel adaptation - Seirei Gensouki and Realist Hero

Hello, name’s Justin. I manage TheOASG — The Organization of Anti-Social Geniuses — a Japanese pop culture site focusing on manga, light novels, and anime with reviews and various features written throughout the week. Much thanks to Karandi for allowing this guest post on her blog, which, as it’s somewhat long, we should get to immediately!

Realist Hero and Seirei Gensouki - both Light Novels turned into Anime

I’ve been very amused watching How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom and Seirei Gensouki: Spirit Chronicles this summer anime season. Amused in the sense I’m reading the light novels of both, and they’re both being adapted in completely different ways. One series is content on methodically moving through its long material while the other blows right through its fairly light content. They each provide their own enjoyment, but at the same time, feelings of what could’ve been arise in both. 

Anyways, it’s rare for me to follow two light novels turned into anime in a season, which is why I’m writing about the experience!

A caveat

While there’s a general method of adapting a work into anime, I won’t say most should strictly stick to it. Like everything It’ll come down to budget, scheduling, and support among many to create a good or great anime, but for series adaptations, the studio should be able to create a work that can bring in a new audience while also being able to satisfy the fans who’ve read the source material. Usually it’s not advisable to go too crazy, but being as creative as possible while adapting the source is more preferable. 

How much have I read of each?

Realist Hero: I’ve read 11 volumes of Realist Hero that’s currently out in print from Seven Seas/J-Novel Club in roughly two weeks in 2021…after I’ve had Volume 1 in my apartment since 2019. There are 13 volumes out digitally from J-Novel Club, with 14 currently through pre-publication on their site (volume 14 is scheduled for October). I’m planning to stick to print for Realist Hero, so can’t answer questions about its story past that.

Seirei Gensouki: I started this series with JNC’s omnibus print release back in June (bought a copy back in February), and then proceeded to read all 13 digital volumes since then. I’m now caught up with its prepub on JNC’s site (Volume 16 is coming out in late September). It took me just about a week to read Seirei Gensouki. This is where I note that the average page count for Seirei Gensouki is between 100-131 pages…there was even a volume or two that was 97 pages. That and what it is (more isekai fantasy not an economic/political isekai fantasy) made it a lot quicker to read.

How many volumes has the anime adapted?

Realist Hero: We have gotten to Episode 9 and it’s finally onto Volume 2! Yes, Episodes 1-8, and even bleeding and lingering a bit into Episode 9, was spent on Volume 1. Hell they even added the extra story towards the end of Volume 1 into the anime! 

Seirei Gensouki: After nine episodes, we’re onto Volume 4 of the LNs! So basically, Volume 1 was episodes 1-3, Volume 2 episodes 4-6, and Volume 3 episodes 7-9, with parts of Volume 4 at the end of 9. 

The Pros and Cons of Realist Hero

Realist Hero

Pros: For those who’ve read the source, it’ll be very familiar since I’d say roughly 70% of Volume 1 has been animated. So basically, if you were enjoying some almost university modern-day Socioeconomic student get summoned by a failing fantasy kingdom to become their Hero only for said student to instead apply his sensibilities and supposedly realist principles to rebuild Elfrieden through administrative efforts in LN form, chances are you’ll like it animated. 

A few storytelling adjustments (How Mystic Wolf Tomoe becomes Souma and Liscia’s little sister is the same but it’s done in an unobtrusive way for example) help smooth out some points in Dojyomaru’s first volume that probably either wasn’t necessary or kinda ill placed (For example while there was a cool moment not adapted, the location for when Souma confronts Hal and Kaede in Episode 6 was pretty awkward in the LN). Also bonus points for adding some extra references (the Yami Yugi moment in episode 1, an a capella version of Megumi Hayashibara’s Give a Reason from Slayers NEXT sung by Juna in Episode 3 to name a few) that were either not in the LN or were but had to be adjusted.

Cons: If there is a big misgiving, it’s how it looks. Functionally the characters look fine and I think overall the show looks passable, but it does look unappealing in a lot of areas. It’s either a case of lack of budget or they’re saving it from when the actual action happens since going in it’s all about characters talking, but visuals is not this series’ strong suit. There are some rearrangements or adjustments that have happened so far that I wish could’ve been included (Liscia being frustrated that Souma says Elfrieden can summon another hero was essentially toned down) or a few surprising stories that I figured would get cut (Like the old man’s Sea God story). There’s also one plot point involving Souma and Hal’s father, Glaive, that’s there yet fairly different in the LNs. How Juna was revealed to be a spy didn’t quite go how it went in the LNs either, to name a few.

The additional issue is because of Realist Hero’s lengthy exposition, you know a lot of words would have to be streamlined, but overall it’s fine. It’s just certain conversations — when Aisha talks to Souma about periodic thinning for example — lacks some lead up details so the forest conversation can come across as knowing too much. Conversely, if you found it kind of strange when Souma essentially promoted Kaede and Hal after discussing the current strife with one of the Three Dukes, let’s just say he had a big reason to do it in the LN (and said reason will come up in the anime). You can explain all you want in text, but an anime has to break all that down to something digestible, and sometimes it doesn’t come through here. Since I’ve read the source I know what Souma’s saying and meaning, but for those who haven’t, it likely comes across very differently.

The Pros and Cons of Seirei Gensouki

Seirei Gensouki

Pros: After some adjustment I’ve been digging the character designs and the interactions the characters have with each other, which is one of the reasons I enjoy the LN. The anime also moves at a quick pace, which in some cases, works out pretty well. It has made lots of cuts, a few for the better here:

From a storytelling standpoint, with this one scene it eliminated two characters from the LN — and since they’re essentially minor characters, it’s fine. If you come in seeing Celia give Rio money, she wasn’t the only one — someone else did too. But well, that someone else died in the scene where Rio returns to the shack, and that someone else has a sister who does appear briefly in the second volume, but hasn’t appeared again in the LN (and feels unlikely to do so). That I’d peg as a smart cut. Sure, it might be nice to have, but on a budget and wanting to get to a good point, the anime staff made the proper choice.

Aside from that, the main “hook” for this isekai is one that at least in anime form doesn’t happen often — the fantasy character actually sticking around. It’s either straight up reincarnated and you take over that fantasy person’s body, but instead, Haruto Amakawa from Japan is dead, and his memories are in Rio, a kid in the slums fueled by revenge. It’s a case where two totally different personalities meld together, which generally creates a sort of who’s taking after who in this case. The harem that does surround him will be what’ll either drive away or bring people into this series though.

Cons: So earlier I said this series made lots of cuts. Overall, the cuts make a lot of storytelling and worldbuilding feel lacking. From explaining the difference between magic and Spirit Arts to character actions, the lack of subtle details prevents us from getting a full sense of each character as opposed to the LN. This in turn bleeds into the story, as of which it only revolves around Haruto/Rio essentially journeying around the world. Now in the novels technically the main story kicks off in Volume 4 once the [Spoiler characters] arrive. It’s just the lead up to it feels like it’s missing something.

It also doesn’t help that because of the cuts, it also feels too rushed. The quick pace works out in some cases, but then we get Episode 8 where the series has Rio talking to two very important people in his life, he’s then supposed to have a match with Gouki — oh look that child he saved earlier in the episode and her bodyguard meet up after he tried to avoid them, they briefly chat, and now Rio and Gouki spar!

I’m serious. This happened in roughly a minute: 

Also while earlier I mentioned two minor characters getting cut, don’t worry, there are a couple others. There’s one additional minor character that has been cut that appears a solid amount in future volumes. If there happens to be a Season 2 for this anime, they’ll have to invent a backstory for said minor character out of cloth…or not. Finally yeah, the actual animation isn’t the best. In the video you saw earlier with Celia giving Rio money, you understand the characters are using magic, but the characters moving the way they are is fairly poor and the blue magic surrounding them is pretty basic. The Latifa/Rio fight is the one where I was really satisfied, but the other fights in this action series don’t stick out as they should. 

So….my preference?

The measured pace in Realist Hero feels more preferable than what’s happening to Seirei Gensouki. I still enjoy Seirei Gensouki and in some areas I wish Realist Hero hurried things up and cut some stuff out. As someone reading both source materials though, it feels for Seirei Gensouki it’s cutting out parts that harm the characters inhabiting it, and any type of character building through its dialogue or its fights is quickly over with so nothing can quite stick. Meanwhile you can quickly suss whether anything Realist Hero does is worth your time or not in three episodes because aside from additional details in the novel, this is about what you’re getting from a kingdom-building isekai. 

What’s next for Realist Hero and Seirei Gensouki

tfW57 7gpWnJgJbBHgpAP0uKpYb05WzhT029AdkPy9MlYTXTMSY IXFoB1lI12tjFhJTdxFtexR1MFkiXcn7Bw YhAz6NwVBEpeTKRipuMlqz65tKHTvN5aqzWHu4QgmWf6hIUM=s0

Realist Hero: It’s got four episodes left to finish Volume 2…with a possible chance of adapting parts of Volume 3. While I can’t be fully confident, I’m sure it should end at a good stopping point. It can’t be great since there’s no guarantee of a S2 and there is a great stopping point with Volume 4 that won’t happen here. But there is a solid end point in Volume 2 that can work, so as long as the animation doesn’t melt, it’ll end strong enough.

Seirei Gensouki: The series has followed the 3 episodes = 1 volume scenario except for episode 9 where they put some Volume 4 stuff up, but based on the Opening and Ending animation/visual, it’s ending in Volume 5. So in the next three episodes the series has to adapt two volumes. The good news is Volume 5 is a natural stopping point. The bad news is we already have a significant deviation based on the stinger in Episode 9.

Will not elaborate this point to avoid massive spoilers, but the character you saw at the end of the episode, who I’ll refer to as Rio’s spirit, did not actually appear in the spirit folk village in Rio’s bed in the LN. For anime-only watchers I think you’d be like finally, we’ll know who she is…but since I’m reading the source, I now have many questions on how the anime will tie in the other plot points (yes, points) from the novel in the last three episodes. Is one completely cut? Is it rearranged?

Also, you’ve seen her introduced as Lotte — also known as Liselotte — and she’s a major character that we know is one of the reincarnated characters in the show, and she appears briefly in Volume 5 of the LN. They’ve met back in Episode 4, but Rio and Liselotte really meet in Volume 6 of the LN. In the OP and more clearly elaborated on in Episode 8, we’ve also been introduced to Rio’s nemesis, Lucius. A spoiler, but these two meet in Volume 7 — is the anime going to tease Lucius and not have them meet? It’s a case where it would feel a little irresponsible to introduce someone like Liselotte into the narrative all grown up and not explore her backstory at all in this anime. Lucius is on a lesser scale if only because his backstory is tied deeply to Rio so you can’t not include him in this anime, but is he in the OP as eye candy/tease? 

Basically, I think some sort of anime-original scenario is on the table, and the chances of that happening went up a bit thanks to how Episode 9 ended. Episode 10 should make that clearer, but functionally there is a way they can make Rio’s spirit waking up this early work while not totally messing up one of the plot points. But despite all the prior cuts the story still was fairly on track and engaging enough. Yet now I’m left wondering even more how much will be crunched over the next three weeks. 

Images from: Seirei Gensouki. Dir. O Yamasaki. TMS Entertainment. 2021 and How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 9 Impressions – This Means War

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 9 Review

He might be a Realist Hero but that doesn’t mean others see him that way.

I don’t have a huge amount to say about Realist Hero this week largely because the events in this episode feel like a necessary plot development, building on prior warnings of internal strife as well as guiding us toward what might feel like a climax to the season depending on how it plays out.

I could be wrong. Maybe Souma will simply resolve the issue with the dukes in the next episode and call it a day.

Realist Hero - Souma having sleep issues

Before I get more on to plot, I’d like to point out that the glaring continuity error early in this episode kind of distracted me from some of the earlier moments so maybe a few points went past me. We see Souma struggling to fall asleep surrounded by papers and, notably, a large pile of books on the bed. However, after a line of dialogue we see him lie down on his pillow and the books have all vanished.

It just felt so bizarre and unnecessary an error given they could have just had Souma reading the papers as the books served no purpose in the scene whatsoever other than showing us that our Realist Hero is in fact a studious person taking his responsibilities seriously. Something that the very presence of all the documents already established. Anyway, it bugged me.

Equally buggy is how little time the Dukes are given to really establish motivation for defying the new king. The lion guy does indicate at first that he’s upset that the Realist Hero Souma has no connection to their past or traditions and therefore has no problem throwing them away, and this potentially could be a valid reason for defiance after discussions break down.

Yet, there’s really been no discussion as none of the dukes were willing to engage in correspondence with Souma from the get-go.

Realist Hero - two of the three dukes

However, even if I view this in the most charitable light possible, when Souma is asking for a reason, he goes on some mindless and empty rant about it being his way of life or the way of a warrior. Part of me wonders if this guy is senile. His motive is unclear and his actions obviously leave his own people in harm’s way with many outside threats just waiting the mess this whole internal conflict is going to cause.


Despite all these criticisms, I’m actually kind of happy about how Souma is depicted throughout this episode. If asked a few weeks ago I would have said that Souma was going to pretty much do whatever to avoid war and the plot would probably let him talk his way out of his problems. Instead, because the duke is such a hard-headed fool, Souma is going to have to take drastic action and he doesn’t really hesitate to make the necessary decision this week.

Realist Hero episode 9

All things considered, it would be nice to see Realist Hero end on a high note. The conflict with the dukedoms gives that option as does the potential issue with the external threats. What the story really does need though is some credible thought processes going on in some of the antagonists otherwise Souma’s victory is going to feel a little lacking.

There was a brief moment of hope in one of the neighbouring kingdoms when one of the aids tried to appeal against war however he was pretty much beaten down. I’m almost sure he and the princess are going to end up working for Souma when their talents are being so heinously overlooked in their own kingdom.

Realist Hero Episode 9

But that pretty much leaves all of the enemies our Realist Hero is currently facing off against with fairly irrational decision making and while they might have more troops I somehow doubt they are going to pose all that much of a threat. I guess we’ll find out.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 8 Impressions – A Landslide and A Reality Check For Our Realist Hero

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 8 Review

Our Realist Hero has to accept reality.

For nearly 7 episodes our realist hero, Souma, has more or less used modern day Earth logic and rudimentary economic theory to more or less revitalise a failing kingdom and hasn’t suffered any particular set-backs other than the potential of his own nobles rebelling because how dare the new king stamp out their corruption. It was good to see Souma pitted against a disaster that had already happened this week and even more interesting when in the final moments we see that Souma acknowledges that he hasn’t managed to prepare for everything.

Realist Hero Episode 8

Not that anyone really believes he should or could have in the few weeks he’s lived in fantasy land.

Honestly, despite our Realist Hero having a small set-back in his confidence this week, things are still all kind of working out for Souma in that wonderfully simplistic manner that only really works in fiction. And how nice it is that Souma doesn’t just understand economic theory but also the fundamentals of making roman concrete, road design, topography and more or less anything else that he’s required to know.

I know, I really should stop wanting this anime to be more than what it is because honestly what it delivers is entertaining enough even if it is a little bland and sanitised. Maybe I should instead be celebrating that How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom isn’t attempting to be the new dark and edgy take on isekai or isn’t aspiring to be some new philosophical work of wonder and missing the entertainment mark by a mile.

However an opportunity not explored is an opportunity wasted and this anime did have an opportunity this week to really challenge Souma. Here was a threat not of a political or economic nature, and not one that could have been predicted in advance, that could have really pushed him to the limit and demonstrated the cracks in what he was trying to build.

Realist Hero Episode 8

Rather than taking this route, we get a really basic rescue operation after a landslide that goes very smoothly and while they can’t save everyone, they also don’t end up in any particular danger or face any major set-backs in their mission. The realist hero does still have to face the blame and mourning of a man who lost his wife, and he does take that emotionally on-board leading to a final sequence that has our Realist facing reality in a way he hadn’t before, but the overall episode deals with the disaster cleanly and efficiently robbing the situation of much of the tension it could have had.

Realist Hero Episode 8

Though, congratulations to that final scene which gave this episode significantly more weight than it might have otherwise had. Souma has been so calm in his progress and decision making with nothing seeming to concern him as he goes about transforming an entire kingdom and economy. Seeing him finally rattled and feeling the weight of his decisions and planning (or lack of it) was a solid character moment even if it came a little too late in the episode.


It feels to me like some of the discussion of food and transport at the start of the episode could have been cut down, considering a lot of it was a rehash of information we already knew, not to mention that the dialogue here was extremely unnatural. If the two characters were filming an infomercial their conversation made perfect sense but no two people sit down and talk like that over lunch after spending the day building a road.

Realist Hero Episode 8

Anyway, How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom remains watchable with moments that do elevate it enough to keep me interested even if all the bits inbetween feel a little too underwhelming at times. I am curious as to what the endgame is for this season of Realist Hero though because we’re closing in on the season’s end and it still feels like we are more or less in the prologue of a grander story.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 7 Impressions – Adventuring and City Building Both Come With Hidden Dangers

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 7

The Realist Hero might be tired, but he’s making some progress.

I almost feel a little cheated this week, though not really because I quite enjoyed this episode of Realist Hero.

But from my episode 6 review, I had quite a discussion in the comments with one of my readers around Souma’s actions and motivations. The conclusion I drew after that was there’s a few different ways to read Souma’s character and I was kind of keen to see the treason and war story continue so that we could see which way Souma was actually going to lean.

Realist Hero Episode 7

Instead How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom more or less just avoided the conversation about the dukes and any potential rumblings of treason amongst the nobility (though there was one throwaway comment about the duke who currently controlled the kingdom’s main port). For something lighter, we instead had Souma’s mascot character going on an adventure which was actually kind of fun and then some light economic discussions around the importance of infrastructure and long term planning.

So let’s start with the adventure.

One thing Realist Hero has done to really distinguish itself from almost every other isekai, is the main character really isn’t going on adventures or fighting monsters. Even in isekai where that isn’t the focus, the characters inevitably end up in a situation where they need to retrieve something or go somewhere and we go on a pretty standard adventure. However, this week Souma does go on an adventure (admittedly, by proxy).

Realist Hero Episode 7

Yes, he sends his spear wielding mascot thing that he is controlling with his magic power with a troop of adventurers into the underground tunnel where after some basic fights they are accosted by a salamander with acid saliva and forced to run for their lives. It’s all a bit of fun and light hearted and honestly while this sort of adventure is a dime-a-dozen the reason so many stories do them is because they are still fun.

While it might have been nice to get to know some of these characters a bit more, Realist Hero had other plans and so we cut to Souma giving all his exhausted money crunchers a much needed holiday as they had finally secured the funds he needed for a major project.

Realist Hero Episode 7

Given a lot of the draw of this anime for me was it seemed to want to take a more economic view on kingdom saving which I’ve kind of enjoyed in anime such as Maoyu Maou Yusha, I was kind of happy to see Realist Hero getting back to basics and the plan to build a port and improve the road network seemed like a logical enough way to go about it (even if the whole thing was very simplified down).


Naturally there is a problem with the plan that comes in the form of a local village warning the construction workers not to build on the land they’ve chosen. And this naturally comes on the back of Souma wondering just why no one had build on such a prime spot.

Fortunately, Souma isn’t short sighted enough not to inquire and on finding out more details determines that clearly the land is at risk from tsunamis and begins the process of choosing a new location.

Realist Hero Episode 7

And that’s really it for Realist Hero this week.

Except for one disappointing scene where the male characters are gathered around the map talking seriously about the risks to their plan and potential for how to salvage the project and Liscia and Aisha are sitting on the couch off to the side basically talking about who likes Souma more. Eye roll.

Realist Hero Episode 7

I was pretty sure that Souma said at some point he was going to hand over the kingdom to Liscia so why isn’t she involved in this conversation? Okay, I get medieval style kingdom and given there are only five characters in the scene it would be making a huge generalisation to think this was standard and yet it just seemed so needless. It would have made a lot more sense for Liscia to at least be asking for explanations even if she wasn’t contributing. As it is, it just feels like she’s been completely sidelined as anything other than Souma’s love interest.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 6 Impressions – Potential for Treason and War

How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom Episode 6 Review

Realist Hero introduces a more serious issue for the new king.

Last week when reviewing How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom, I made the comment that we were definitely in a fantasy. That feeling continues as we see a new complication floated Souma’s way this episode that he deals with way too easily (though there are at least ongoing implications that might be explored going forward).

Realist Hero Episode 6

Continuing on in the coffee shop, Souma, Liscia and Aisha overhear a soldier talking with a mystic fox girl (who turns out to be a mage in the king’s army). The soldier is more or less outlining why he’s going to cross over to Duke Carmine’s side and that many other nobles were doing the same. Mystic Fox girl on the other hand is pro-king all the way and more or less explains why he shouldn’t.

At this point Souma decides the best way to deal with all this is have a friendly chat.

Realist Hero Episode 6

Treason should always be dealt with over cups of tea.

On the one hand, this is an opportunity for Realist Hero to actually build in some genuine political tension. The sharing of power between the throne and the three dukes doesn’t seem like the most stable system and external threats will take advantage of perceived weaknesses. More than that, the dukes have not responded to Souma’s communications as king so he clearly needs to figure out what is going on.

Though it seems a little remarkable that he hadn’t already sent someone in person to see the various dukes given their importance to the kingdom and the reforms he’s been trying to build. Was he just hoping the problem would sort itself?

Anyway, turns out the soldier isn’t so much a traitor as a hot-headed idiot and having the reality of war, you know having to fight against people you might actually like if they are in the king’s army, pointed out to him he more or less immediately changes his tune.

Realist Hero Episode 6

For a show called How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom I wonder sometimes about the lack of reality. If you’ve ever tried explaining basic logic to someone who inherently believes something that is counter-intuitive you will know that logical arguments usually fail horribly. So the sudden change of tune in the soldier’s mind set seems very much lacking in reality.

But that’s okay. By resolving that issue quickly, Souma, our Realist Hero, gets to go and have a lap pillow moment with Liscia where she actually brings up the conversation around their engagement. Nothing gets resolved here given that would certainly destroy any possibility of the harem forming but it at least makes it clear that Liscia is a lot more interested than she was when Souma first arrived.

Realist Hero Episode 6

As for the episode ending where the father of the soldier turns up with the fox mage and his son (son sporting some major bruising) Souma more or less diffuses the whole thing, promotes the fox mage and then gives the son a key role next to her in the king’s army.

So the key to promotion in this kingdom is get overheard plotting treason and then change your mind? Not sure this is a message a Realist Hero should be sending.


None of that is as bad though as the episode ending more or less the same way that a previous episode ended. The father apparently has something to tell Souma and so clears the room. We don’t hear what he tells the king but we do see the king’s reaction (much the same as when wolf-girl wanted to tell him she spoke with a demon).

Realist Hero Episode 6

How a Realist hero Rebuilt the Kingdom remains watchable fluff but really doesn’t have enough substance (though wants to try to reach for it on occasion). I assume it will remain a pleasant enough watch through to the end of the season but so far has been pretty forgettable.

Images from: How a Realist Hero Rebuilt the Kingdom. Dir. T Watanabe. J.C.Staff. 2021

Thank-you for reading 100 Word Anime.
Join the discussion in the comments.
Karandi James