「魔人降臨」 (Majin Kourin)
“Advent of the Demon”

I admit I’m sad. No second season announcement? Not even the tease of an upcoming OVA? Oh Eminence in Shadow you were done dirty. Yet only getting the short end of the stick in part; when it comes to season finales, there’s certainly worse ways of closing matters off. Between letting Beatrice and Iris tag team a fight with Cid – and with Iris going crazed psycho to boot (that red hair isn’t only for show) – to getting Rose into the ranks of Shadow Garden we got it all. Hell there was even room to let Cid do what Cid does best and have the kid fully indulge in his sense of smug imagination. What else is there to say? This finale was great. Period.

It might be a while before Eminence in Shadow returns to the TV screen (because rest assured it will), but I dare say it left off the best way possible. Now onto those final impressions!

Final Impressions

There’s no denying isekai is a mixed bag these days. When anime latches onto a genre it bloats it for all it’s worth, and as the past few years have shown for every interesting story in this genre there’s a dozen or so which quickly fade into the woodwork. It’s such an environment which makes Eminence in Shadow an interesting ride, because for all it embraces the tropes and expectations it also inverts them, letting humour and imagination run wild to make the most of (and make up for) what’s on tap. We may have seen this story numerous times before, but Eminence in Shadow proves yet again why execution is king.

What particularly sold me on Eminence in Shadow is its relative lack of care. It’s a series which knows it’s derivative so it doesn’t waste any time with serious thought or grounding its characters and setting. Cid exemplifies this: he’s overpowered as hell and is the centre of attention, but never evolves into the quintessential (and boring) harem lead of fellow isekai series. It’s all subversion on the kid’s part owing to his desire to live out his fantasy and the world quite serendipitously playing out according to impulsive whims. In effect it’s if Konosuba traded slice of life for pulpy mystery thriller, where the parody isn’t in how overly ludicrous the characters are, but in how chaotically comedic the plot gets as Cid’s imagination kicks into overdrive. There’s a lot of entertainment value in letting setups like these run wild, something Eminence in Shadow successfully leveraged for all its worth.

Of course, that isn’t to say everything was perfection here. At heart Eminence in Shadow does remain an isekai, and an isekai adaptation at that. Rushed pacing was plentiful at times, production values did slip on occasion, and there were many characters and developments which arguably could have used more screentime. Big one in this instance are the girls of Shadow Garden: outside of a few plot-critical cases a lot of the inner workings of Cid’s little empire were left to cameos and quick blurbs. Given the organization’s relative importance (and how the ED exclusively featured its members) getting some additional information would have been nice, particularly as the reach of the Cult and the nature of the fight against it came to the fore. I wouldn’t call it enough to wreck what Eminence in Shadow offered (especially given the comedy focus), but it’s something I hope the inevitable future OVAs/seasons can correct, for if only for a more well-rounded idea of just what’s going on. And, you know, more reasons to laugh at Cid’s latest escapades.

Overall, however, Eminence in Shadow is without a doubt one of the better isekais to have graced our screens of late. Between its crazy premise and fun characters it shows the true value of a letting a premise spread its wings, to not take genre conventions at face value, and – lo and behold – to actually have laidback fun with the material in hand. Although arguably a stretch to say Eminence in Shadow is one of isekai’s absolute bests, it definitely shows this genre has plenty of untapped potential remaining and I am very eager seeing what comes from both it and isekai as a whole next. Something tells me there’s plenty of pleasant surprises left to be had.


  1. For me it was a show which bent over backwards into its own asshole to accomodate the protagonist (as someone on another forum put it quite succinctly) and I bailed after five episodes. But good enough that some people still enjoy this kind of stuff, I guess.

    1. It’s why I brought up that it still remains a generic isekai at heart. If you don’t like such series in general this one isn’t going to sell you anytime soon, particularly if the variety of comedy doesn’t click. I got my money’s worth out of it, but I don’t expect everyone else to experience the same.

  2. Cid is the embodiment of Chaotic Neutral. As long as he is entertain, he will get in the way of the bad guy that caught his interest and use the good guys as props to make himself look awesome. But this episode though he got a little bit overboard with his method acting, thankfully his inner child goes ‘Yamero’ to him and he reel it in….for now

    Though its looks like more people from the light/’good’ side is preparing to go against him (as he indirectly wanted, a show need actors and god damn they are willing to provide).

    1. Cid’s ability to walk himself back and revel in the fun is honestly what keeps me liking this show. It’s so corny and over the top, yet Cid and the story are self-aware enough to keep it funny rather than cringey. That feat alone is enough for compliments.

  3. @Pancakes

    Didn’t they announced via twitter or something, Kage Jitsuryokusha get 2nd season thanks for making Kadokawa more money than expected? Also their game is selling and genuinely good in writing and really serve as perfect side material just like Code Geass S1 sound drama and the picture drama did in 2006. Too bad, the kagejitsu short ONA didn’t enhance the watching experience, as they are too busy dabbling in boring unimportant jokes like panties and crappy toilet jokes. Only the part where they do something like inventing sushi or making new burger menu really worked because they felt like it will play a part in the future but played as parody here.

    Nevertheless, next week there will be a livestream and supposedly big announcement in Kadokawa official channel regarding KageJitsuryokusha.

    On the other hand….

    Shockingly, we were shown what kind of fellow this unknown King of Midgard is. Seems to me he is a kind of scheming character who knows his politics. His act of sending the Oriana’s King remains to Marquiss Grant (WN character, a political opponent of Doem) is also an act to discredit Doem Kettsubatto as a selfish, disloyal, cowardly retainer, even lesse majeste ; a good cassu belli to start a war between opposing political faction. The King of Midgard know that he is a weak sovereign and his kingdom already a prey of greater power play he had no hope to influence nor take part of and begrudgingly seeing his own strongest daughter defeated with ease, his own political ally (Oriana) turn to that and pushed into brink civil war… no wonder he felt helpless. Both him and Iris.

    The whole improvement of this fighting scene, even the foreshadowing of twin crowbars,…. mocking iris that she fight like a cripple and a girl after seeing her wielding a magic flame swords….. man, that must’ve been quite a burn to her ego. Not even the cold river water and heavy rain can heal that burn…. beatrix notes something familiar from shadow during the fight and remark about Vampiric technique….

    Well, Annerose, don’t expect a casablanca scene from cid.

    Iris relying on Iroquis knife combat skill, yet Shadow with all his combat otaku knowledge derived from Soldier of Fortune magazine and various youtube knife combat instructional video reigned superior. Thus, concluded with the chad pancration move and manly stomp to show off dominance! Not every day i feel fired up like when i watched Thanos punching the sh*t off Cap’n Marvel in endgame.

    No wonder Iris get broken and despair so much. The manga and novel wasn’t very detailed in showing the seriousness of the situation, here, we see something similar that of Sword of Damocles hanging above your head only held by single strand of string…. while instead a blade of sword, it is a genuine nuclear bomb.

    Alexia is really a true blue heroine protagonist; a perfect template. Her reasoning and motivation remain true, honest and pure… while the older sibling fall into villainous path and obsession for greater power needing a future redemption arc; common shonen trope.

    … Taepodong?

    This is simply not fair. Making Sherry so hot while mindbroken and her voice so full of sex at this late in the final episode with no sign of her next appearance is simply playing unfair game, director! I want her h-doujin both netorare and not, this is a fatalpulse material, too….

    Goddamn Takehito Koyasu for Mordred…. the director burn all the budget for this episode fight and plethora of veteran seiyuu…. not Bad! Money well spent director! Now i want Nishimura in the game even if it is impossible…. Horie Yui was great as Nishimura

    Soo many foreshadowing and snippets for Lawless City…… Beatrix fondly watching Oritsuru burger wrapping? Oyakodon inseki is available then. Don’t you need electricity or cable for telegraph? Fishing tuna , lol….

    Geh… that gigantic statue…. Either Colossus Rhodes or Liberty. The castle part of Alexandria isn’t shown, instead we were shown the modern architecture housing complex and… agricultural field? That sparring pink haired girl where you blinked and missed…. is she 559 – Victoria? Seems that the previous drawing was a schematics for Zeppelin Airships…. that hot air baloon seems like an experimental.

    Lambda! Just because you are roleplaying as gunnery sergeant hartman, there is no need to make yourself hated that much! YOU.JUST.DON’T.CUT.OFF.DRILLS!!! What were you thinking you dumb gyaru knife ears moron!

    Hey, Rose is now listed as 666 in credit scroll. Nice touch. Director!

    1. Nope no official announcement yet. Widely expected the livestream will have something though, even if only a couple OVAs; the series is simply too popular and leaving off with such a weird episode number to not have something more.

      1. Would be nice if 4 episode at least skimmed over most even from Seven Shades Chronicle, even if it was in medias res .

        Btw, there is someone in /a who decode Eta’s morse code; it read, ‘tsuzuku (to be continued) ‘. Either this is a hint or practical joke. The director is really a trolling genius with all the chekov, hints, foreshadowing presents.

  4. Didn’t rly get why Iris is so mad, i know it in part of feeling inferior but to go through all this hassle and setting the knights/ kingdom toward taking down shadow and shadow garden felt weird to me.

    their first encounter was with alpha saving the day for iris, 2nd was the school taken over by fake shadow garden (which surely she knows is fake)… whats she so mad about…

    Beatrix was fighting for the sake of fighting, so i get that.

    if Rose is going to be in shadow garden it makes sense she will know about cid sooner then later, didn’t get why they went overly long and dramatic on the hamburger wrap.
    was a cool scene don’t get me wrong.

    was a little let down by the garden girls not getting much action, not even at the end.
    could have showed them surrounding the carriage with perv asshat in it…. i mean unless he did escape… but then the show is auto trash for me.

    1. Part of it was inferiority with Iris, but a good chunk of it was also her feeling like she’s letting her people and kingdom down. Not only wasn’t she able to identify Mundane Mann as Shadow, but she got bested publicly. At Iris’ level reputation and fear is everything so being shown up like that makes it tougher for her to exert pressure later on.

  5. It may be due to tastes but it looks Isekai Ojisan had a better start than this one.
    “I am atomic” did have better quality overall especially in the comedy section.

    Though, it is so generic.

    Not KoG
  6. Show was a blast. Rarely have I laughed so hard after seeing patricide, but this show managed to do it.

    Strangely enough, my real gripe was with this final episode. There’s a feeling that Cid didn’t go all the way. When he usually goes all in and beyond, even when he screws up. Actually had to check the manga for comparison.

    When it comes to the main girls of Shadow Garden, I think the closest we’ll ever get to knowing them is from that mini series they have running. Light hearted entertainment, but probably the closest we’ll get until a sequel arrives.

    1. The game Master of Garden has a several volumes worth of content that characterises the Seven Shadows, how they built the organisation in the two years that they were separated from Cid.


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