「たとえばラストダンジョン前の村の少年が序盤の街で暮らすような物語」 (Tatoeba Rasuto Danjon Mae no Mura no Shounen ga Joban no Machi de Kurasu You na Monogatari)
“Suppose a Kid From the Last Dungeon Boonies Moved to a Starter Town?”
Ahh, new year, new season, and oh yes, new anime. And what better way to start off the festivities than with a little fantasy? Well, unless you dislike fantasy (god knows why), but dammit I like it so here we are with Last Dungeon. Besides having a name whose line number probably exceeds the word count of multiple contemporaries (thus explaining my choice of title contraction), Last Dungeon is about as cookie cutter as you can get, yet hasn’t forgotten the one aspect that can turn a stone into a jewel: fun.
Per the RC Preview, Last Dungeon is straightforward. Main kiddie Lloyd (Hanamori Yumiri) thinks he’s weak, and so decides to set off on a mission to become a soldier since doing soldier things is obviously the only way to prove his worth. Except the kid isn’t your ordinary kind of weak thanks to heralding from a village full of demigod-like people. Or in other words, a play on the ubiquitous nobody coming to possess a massive degree of power able to help save the world. This is coupled with the paint by numbers fantasy setting and the usual character archetypes always found in these sorts of series which effectively leaves things predictable and arguably bland. After all, when you’re already hinting towards spies, foreign rivals, and demon lords, you know exactly what’s coming down the pipeline.
What prevents Last Dungeon from falling off the rails though is its characters. All of them. Mage Marie (Kayano Ai) is case in point, going from typical magical girl (literally) to outright hater of female octogenarian tweens in a perfect display of I cannot breathe comedy that I really need more of in my life sooner rather than later. Lloyd too, no matter his utterly unimpressive personality gets kudos for keeping fully in tune with the blissful ignorance of his actual power (yes, he ran that distance) and letting the likes of Marie go hog wild. And then we get to Selen (Asahina Madoka) who I am dead certain no one had pinned for an unintentional admirer of the Man in the Iron Mask when we were still in preview territory. Oh and a total yandere that is hilariously likely to kill someone once Lloyd commences the harem building process, but hey, one step at a time! I honestly couldn’t tell you if the strength of the cast is entirely down to the source material, script writer choices, or the impressive voice acting, but I do know I’m loving what we have so far – and the best part is we haven’t even seen the entire cast of misfits yet.
While Last Dungeon won’t be winning any awards for ingenuity this season, this one will definitely be a show to consider if in need of some comfy lighthearted fantasy and more than a bit of deadpan hilarity. I likely won’t wind up covering this one through, but I certainly will be watching to see just what Last Dungeon has in store for the rest of this season.
Another positive for Last Dungeon is its animation. It may be simple, but it’s not often these days we get such crisp anime art and full 2D animated monsters in all their buggy glory.