When the Eminence in Shadow started airing I almost didn’t watch it. An edgy isekai show with an overpowered main character who has a harem of girls fawning over him. I’ve seen that too many times for it to still be interesting. But something about the first episode kept me interested. Cid as a character seemed fairly cool so I figured I could keep watching it. It’s a good thing I did because this show is hilarious. Let’s have a look at Shadow Garden and the chaos that it’s sparking in multiple nations in this strange world.
The story follows Cid Kagenou, a guy who was trying to be a hero in his old life on earth by helping people out like a batman type vigilante guy. Unfortunately he dies young and reincarnates in a fantasy world. There he quickly realizes he’s got the potential to be extremely powerful and spends his time training and getting stronger. He meets a young elven girl who he helps out and names Alpha. Now Cid isn’t a normal boy, he’s a massive Chuuni. Someone who loves to pretend to be cool and in this world he’s chosen to pretend there’s an evil cult out there that he’s fighting. This is where we start to realize how silly this show is because it turns out that the cult he made up for his pretend villains is actually real. Not only that, the girls he saves as time goes on create the powerful organization Shadow Garden whose goal is to fight against this Diablos Cult. All of this happens while Cid pretends to be a normal high school kid and only his alter ego Shadow gets all the action. He spends time setting up the mood when he meets with his underlings so he looks as cool as possible and the way he spends his free time thinking of witty one-liners really sells his character.
A show like Eminence in Shadow doesn’t work if it’s not self-aware enough. Because of how silly of a character Cid ends up being, it gets pretty hype whenever he turns things up to eleven and starts slicing fools left and right. Cid is probably one of the most powerful beings in this fantasy world and he loves showing it off under his alias of Shadow. There’s lots of subplots going on about former heroes and cultists and intrigue between kingdoms and all alongside this Cid has to balance two lives. It’s like Hannah Montana but for edgy sword fighters. That’s scarily accurate.
Let’s talk about the characters in the show. We’ve talked enough about Cid to know what kind of character he is. The rest of the characters in this show are almost all women. It’s a harem anime after all. Having said that, it’s not a bad thing in this case. These are actual characters and not eye candy like some other harem characters can tend to be. Rose, Iris and several of the members of Shadow Garden have interesting stories to them, especially Alpha and her presumed connection to a character that shows up in the second half. It also helps that Cid seems to have very little interest in romance. He’d probably only consider it if it made his made up stories cooler but not for any other reason. I particularly enjoyed the trio of Rose, Alexia and Beta and their complicated friendship.
As for the animation and the artstyle, there’s not much to say here. It’s never bad, at least not that I’ve noticed. I also wasn’t ever blown away by how the show looked. It did its job but didn’t go overboards in doing so. All things considered this was a highly enjoyable show and I’m curious where things will go from here if there ends up being a second season. I’ve heard it’s been quite popular so there’s a decent chance. If you haven’t watched this show yet and you like action comedies with a dumb plot that don’t waste your time, then this show is definitely for you. Thanks for reading.
2 thoughts on “The Eminence in Shadow”
There is a hint for a 2nd season in the last epi. Beatrix and Zeta, that one where you didn’t meet at all throughout the series. Fav ladies. Geebus, “I am…atomic” legendary one liner right there. Also, when Alexia bullied Iris in getting a thong to seduce Cid, that interaction was hilarious.
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It was such a funny show. I’m glad it was self-aware, because it probably would have been a very dull story if it wasn’t
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