Are you the type of role-playing game player that grinds levels until you can beat every enemy with one hit? Then this might be the anime for you. Based off of the light novel written by Light Tuchihi and illustrated by Saori Toyota, Cautious Hero: The Hero Is Overpowered but Overly Cautious is about Ristarte, a goddess who must summon a human hero in order to save the world of Gaeabrande from a Demon Lord. She chooses to summon Seiya Ryuguin, a hero whose stats are insanely higher than any other candidate. However, upon summoning him, Ristarte realizes that he is ridiculously cautious about everything, including her. Refusing to even leave the room he was summoned into, Seiya proceeds to drive Ristarte and everyone else around him crazy due to his insistence to be “100 percent ready for everything”.
Every year we get at least one new comedy Isekai (genre in which a character is transported to a fantasy world) that tries to stand against the crazy standards of Konosuba. While not quite as rich in story or content as other Isekai, such as The Rising of the Shield Hero, Cautious Hero it makes up for it with its absolutely hilarious writing. However, the heart of the show is the relationship between Seiya and Ristarte, especially right before the inevitable fight against the Demon Lord.
Seiya is insistent on being prepared for everything. He buys multiple swords, many sets of armor, thousands of potions, and always makes sure to have every type of damage immunity imaginable. He is so cautious that he will waste every single special move he has just to kill the most basic of enemies. This insistence of training drives everyone in Gaeabrande mad, but it is exactly what the country needs.
The real heart of the show is Ristarte. The Goddess of Healing of the divine realm, Ristarte has the task of watching over Seiya and healing any wounds he is inflicted with. However, due to Seiya’s cautious nature, he often refuses her healing due to fear she might curse him instead. It does not help that Ristarte is infatuated with Seiya, which further deters him from receiving her help. Ristarte also provides most of the comedic relief due to her reactions to Seiya’s absurd behavior. She often has to cover up his mistakes, such as comforting a village after Seiya destroys their church in order to make sure that the zombified priest is truly dead.
As great as the show’s two leads are, it would not be nearly as entertaining without its supporting cast. Ariadoa, the senior goddess to Ristarte, is often the voice of reason when Seiya goes overboard with his overly-cautious behavior. Cerceus, the Divine Blade is appointed by Ristarte to attempt to train Seiya. However, due to Seiya’s immense power and desire for near-constant training, he is relegated to hiding from him out of fear for his own life. Seiya’s other two party members, Mash and Elulu provide for some needed character development for the hero. As dragonkin, they could be powerful if trained properly, but Seiya is more interested in having them carry his inventory for him. At first it seems like he does not want them to get in his way, but in reality he just does not want to endanger his party if he does not have to.
The English dub for Cautious Hero is adequate. While some of the dialogue writing can be a bit much (particularly making Seiya sound like a typical cocky dude sometimes), it works for the most part. The voice acting, on the other hand, was great. The Automated Dialog Replacement director, Jeremy Inman, who also did ReLIFE, brought out the best of the large cast. Jamie Marchi, the voice of Ristarte, and Chris Rager, the voice of Cerceus, were the standouts for me. They brought a lot of comedy to their performances and the dialogue delivery never felt too over-the-top.
Cautious Hero is one of many comedic Isekai shows, but separates itself with its unique and relatable premise, while also being one of the funniest anime to come out in 2019. I am excited for the second season, even though I will likely have to wait until 2021 for its release.