Cautious Hero: The Hero Is Overpowered but Overly Cautious

  • Titles: Shinchou Yuusha
  • Genre: Comedy, fantasy, isekai, adventure
  • Episodes: 12
  • Studio: White Fox

Sometimes, a title is long enough as is and you don’t need to add anything to it! Seiya Ryuuguuin is a young Japanese man. And you know what that means! It means he has a way above-average chance of getting summoned to a fantasy world in order to defeat some huge evil and save everyone. Also, a pretty girl or 5 will probably be involved. And wouldn’t you know it, that’s exactly what happened. But Seiya isn’t your average everyday man become hero of legend. He has one thing that sets him apart from the masses. Seiya is a very careful guy. And when you have to deal with thirsty goddesses and overpowered demon lords lurking around every corner, you can never be too careful. Or can you?

I like a good fanservicy isekai comedy once in a while. They generally make me giggle or at least tend to be mostly harmless. And that’s what I expected from Cautious Hero as well. Just from the cover art if nothing else. But just like the goddess Ristarte, I didn’t get exactly what I bargained for. Let me tell you why.

we just started!

I gotta say, the production here isn’t really much to write home about. It’s fine but I would go as far as to claim that it’s probably the least impressive looking Isekai that I have watched. Maybe aside from KonoSuba that isn’t exactly an animation powerhouse either but I think has more interesting character designs than Cautious Hero.

Basically, Cautious Hero looks fine. It’s fine, ok!

However, I should give some kudos to the voice actors. Both the casting, directing and performance of the actors was delightful and brought a lot to the experience. And because I of course accidentally watched bits in English, I can even vouch for the English cast that seemed to have done a really good job on this one.

yup the voices, definitely what I like about this show…

So what do you sign up for in 12 episodes of Cautious Hero that caught me so off guard? For one, it’s freakin hilarious. Of course, comedy is highly subjective and I’m sure Cautious Hero is bound to be a bot too low brow for some of my readers, but I was honestly laughing through most of it.

And surprisingly, the humour is very tongue in cheek and meta. Jokes are derived from poking self-aware fun of the genre or exaggerating archetypes mostly. Although there are a few very dirty jokes but they tend to be subtle and could go over the head of viewers that aren’t familiar with the references.

I would say it’s 90% comedy. The jokes are quickfire and pretty much incessant, except for a few genuinely dramatic stretches towards the end. I’ll get back to that. And for me, those jokes mostly landed which means I had a great time with the series.

The surprising thing that was missing is the fanservice. Don’t get me wrong, there is some but it’s mostly in the form of goddesses wearing really sexy costumes. That’s about it. There’s no wardrobe malfunction, accidental groping or pervy camera angles. As far as the fanservice goes, it’s got to be one of the most innocent series I have seen in a while and I guess that could disappoint some viewers. I dunno, I guess it would be a bit like going to vegas to see a sexy burlesque show and ending up watching a Carlin stand-up routine. Both are good but in different ways, you know.

Now I did mention a short dramatic stretch towards the end of the series. Despite being a parody, for the most part, Cautious Hero does in fact have a continuous arc. The plot is a bit superficial and straightforward, also very cliché but that works extremely well for the format. Also, not having to develop that plot too much means that the show had more time to send on the characters.

And by “the characters” I really only mean the two leads, Ristarte and Seiya. Being parodies themselves, they never really evolve past the caricature stage much but they are crafted in such a way that you do start to care about them. Or at least I did. So when the plot demanded that I genuinely worry about them and their fate to make the final stretch of the show engaging, I did and it worked.

they make quite the team

In fact, I cared so much that when the very last reveal came in the final minutes of episode 12, a reveal I had guessed 3 episodes ago and never doubted would come, I was crying. Just to be straight with you, it’s one of those super predictable cliché reveals, you will guess it too. But if you’re like me, it won’t matter, it will still hit you.

Basically what I’m saying is that I got emotionally involved with these characters and their story without even noticing it because I was just laughing the whole time. And that was extremely refreshing as I have been reviewing beloved fantasy adventure series on a seasonal basis for a while now and haven’t been able to connect with those shows as I have with cautious hero.

If you are in the mood for a pure comedy in a fantasy setting, I think you should give Cautious Hero a chance. It did remind me of KonoSuba a bit but it’s its own show and I wouldn’t say there is much overlap. It certainly was a very pleasant surprise to me.

One last point I would like to make. Although I really enjoyed the series and would gladly watch another show from the same team or based on works by the same author, I’m not sure how I feel about a second season of Cautious Hero: The Hero Is Overpowered but Overly Cautious. A big strength of the series is that it knew when to let a joke go. It didn’t insist too much on anything or become repetitive to the point of getting boring. And I think that’s a real risk if they try to recapture it for another 12 episodes. I would still watch it though. I hope it would prove me wrong.

Favourite character: This was really tough. There are a lot of likeable folks in Cautious Hero. If you twist my arm then maybe Adenela?

Suggested drink: Do Be Careful

  • Every time Seiya refuses something  – take a sip… aw c’mon, please?
  • Every time Rista loses her cool – get some ice
  • Every time Rista gets thirsty  – get some water
  • Every time Seiya is shirtless  – fan yourself
  • Every time Seiya goes into overkill mode – take a sip
  • Every time its goddess tea time – raise your pinkie
  • Every time Seiya is sulking – take a sip
  • Every time anyone says “bro” – take a sip
  • Every time a new goddess appears – raise your glass in respect
  • Every time Rista worries for the children – take a sip
  • Every time it gets bloody – take a sip
  • Every time Elulu gets depressed – awww cheer up
  • Every time Seiya is nice to someone – make sure you’re not completely drunk
  • Every time Ishtar is looking for Rista – take a sip
  • Every time we see Rista’s wings – take a sip

In case you’re new here, I have a Pinterest with all my screencaps (there are a lot!). If you can’t find a show you are looking for in my main boards, just go to Anime Screenshots. I move the shows I have reviewed there. Of course, I’m still going to add a few images here!

Irina

I'm much nicer than I seem, we should be friends!

17 Responses

  1. vartika6790 says:

    Cautious hero made us laugh like anything. At every scene I would doubt if she was really a goddess or not since she didn’t act like one most of the times..!!

  2. I agree with you about the humor and the surprisingly effective drama.

    Another thing that really worked for me were the exaggerated expressions like your “this is going to get old” and “leave a goddess behind” screen shots. In the context of this show, I thought they were hilarious.

  3. This was one of my favourites from 2019. I think Dr Stone season one beat it, but regardless, I loved it and like you that ending really hit home.

    Yeah, I’m not sure about a second season other than the chance to spend some more time with these characters. We’ll see!

  4. “no wardrobe malfunction, accidental groping or pervy camera angles”

    Now why is that so appealing to me?

    I think it is because those kinds of shots are trying to appeal to the notion of getting something you’re not entitled to. A kind of violation of the female that is acceptable because it is inadvertent. Never understood that. Most shows would be vastly better off just letting attractive people simply look and act like attractive people.

    OH! We’re climbing down a ladder and I happen to look up and see her panties. And now we get to do the embarrassment routine. Again. For the hundredth time. Obviously, someone likes this stuff or it wouldn’t be so common. But you know, if you’ve seen one camel toe or one wardrobe malfunction or the scene where the guy falls onto her and grabs her breasts “accidentally,” you’ve seen them all.

  5. David Boone (moonhawk81) says:

    This was a really odd series for me–I watched 6 straight episodes one evening when I was bored and had no new shows waiting. I didn’t not like, but didn’t particularly like it, either. And the parody aspect was pushed way too hard to give me the chance to find anything funny–sort of like if somebody’s really proud of a cake (more cake, Seiya!) s/he baked, but shoves such a huge piece into your mouth that you can’t really taste anything beyond impeding death by choking. Didn’t dislike it and turn it off, but can’t imagine when I might go back for the other half, either. . .

    • Irina says:

      Considering your usual tastes in anime I’m surprised you liked it at all to be honest. Doesn’t seem like a David type of show

      • David Boone (moonhawk81) says:

        Actually, I’ve become quite a fan of the isekai genre in general–something that honestly has surprised me. (Oh, that “impeding death” thing up above was supposed to read “impending death.” Might make a little more sense, now.)

  6. Dawnstorm says:

    Every time Seiya refuses to do something – take a sip, but only after you’re sure you’re prepared for the consequences. Don’t worry. You can pause the video. Think. Don’t rush it. But do take a sip. Once you’re sure. Really, really sure. Are you sure you’re sure?

    I loved the first episode, but I did suffer diminishing returns. My enjoyment bounced around a bit and eventually settled on a cute comfort watch.

    I did like what they did with the magic sword arc. It makes so much sense.

    • Irina says:

      Damn, I wish I had thought of that….Good one.
      I think I went in expecting to not like it too much so I was starting out cautiously optimistic,,, and then just enjoyed it more and more as I let go of that.

  1. April 29, 2021

    […] Irina at https://drunkenanimeblog.com/ […]

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