OP: Iki o Suu Koko de Suu Ikiteku 「息を吸う ここで吸う 生きてく」by Yui Nishio
「俺は真の仲間じゃないらしい」 (Ore wa Shin no Nakama ja Nai Rashii)
“You’re Not a True Comrade”
If you’re expecting the instant gratification of Cheat Kushi no Slow Life, you might not find exactly what you’re looking for with Shin no Nakama ja Nai to Yuusha no Party wo Oidasareta node, Henkyou de Slow Life suru Koto ni Shimashita. But instead of leaning on slice-of-life antics, the anime carves out its niche easily as the story of a man who wishes to put aside the worrisome internal politics that come from adventuring.
The serious tone that the anime goes with works well with the story considering how it doesn’t feel entirely out-of-place for Red to want to retire to sell herbs at an apothecary. Namely, many of his skills on the battlefield come in handy when he has to cultivate riskier herbs that other merchants would have a harder time gaining access to. It makes it all the more rewarding when Red is able to gather these herbs in secret and benefit the town as he sets up shop and is always well-stocked with life-saving remedies.
At the same time, the central conflict posited by Episode 01 is a bit silly. Red was one foot out the door with his party, but it was odd that all it took for him to retire from adventuring was getting gate-kept out of being a warrior by one of his bitchier comrades. Ares thinks Red is unfit to help out Red’s kid-sister Ruti and takes it upon himself to kick him out. It’s a dick move because nobody else came forward wanting to give Red the boot.
But with how Red views adventuring, even if Ares wasn’t being catty, he would have likely found the quickest excuse he could find to retire and build his pharmacy way out in Zoltan. In his eyes, adventuring frankly sucks and it’s not worth it to rank up or deal with the internal politics of the party you got dumped into. Not when you could always just use your abilities to be a small town’s beloved pharmacist who could use his talents to help others and not bask in another person’s glory.
It’s definitely more plot-heavy than the other slice-of-life pharmacy anime, but the music helps to sell the laid-back atmosphere it wants to steer towards. Both the opening and ending songs are bouncy and lovely songs that might end up sticking out more than the show itself. Composer Hashimoto Yukari is credited towards the soundtrack, and her contributions build on the theming behind the slow life that Red aspires towards.
There is a ton of competition in this season, and this anime is likely to get buried underneath all of the higher-profile shows, but Shin no Nakama ja Nai to Yuusha no Party wo Oidasareta node, Henkyou de Slow Life suru Koto ni Shimashita is shaping up to be a worthwhile experience for the Fall season.
ED: Minna Onaji「みんなおなじ」by Jyocho