Redo of Healer

On the surface, you might think that Redo of Healer is a very polarizing show; and to understand why that is, you need to understand why it became so infamous. Redo of Healer—otherwise known as Kaifuku Jutsushi no Yarinaoshi—initially seems interesting; at first you are given the illusion that it is a traditional fantasy story about heroes fighting in order to save the world from the demon king, classic JRPG stuff. However, it is quickly revealed that things aren’t quite so simple; each of the heroes has unique abilities correlating to their titles, such as “hero of the gun”, “hero of the sword”, etc. The protagonist, Keyaru, is the Hero of Recovery, which lets him heal others perfectly of any injuries or afflictions, but at the cost of his sanity. Healing others causes him to experience all of their memories in incredibly vivid detail as though he had lived through them himself, an experience so traumatizing that he initially refuses to invoke his powers again after going through it for the first time. With only the ability to heal, his unwillingness (among other things) makes him a target for the other heroes, who abuse the protagonist and force him to aid them in their fight against the demon king against his will. In an effort to resist, he slowly breaks free of their control and learns more about his healing abilities; namely, the fact that he is able to copy the strength and unique abilities of others by experiencing their memories (or at least that’s the gist of it). With that newfound power, he is eventually able to seize the opportunity to defeat the demon king himself, claiming an artifact they were protecting known as the Philosopher’s Stone. An item capable of invoking magic on par with that of a god, he uses his healing ability in conjunction with its power in order to “heal the world”, turning back time to years before any of the aforementioned events unfolded for the sake of changing the future and trying to get revenge on the false heroes who wronged him. As the show continues, you learn that it is set in a dark fantasy world where the conflict between humanity and the demon king is not nearly as clear cut as you might expect, with morally bankrupt and twisted heroes willing to distort reality for the sake of appearing righteous and just in their cause. Sounds pretty cool, right? Well, maybe it would be if it didn’t read like it was written by an edgy 12-year old who watched way too much hentai. From the premise, you can gather that the whole show is essentially supposed to be a revenge story, but the problem is that it fails to understand the fundamentals of writing a revenge story; the whole point of a revenge story and the message it’s supposed to convey is that revenge is unsatisfying and meaningless, and chasing after it with no heed for the consequences will only hurt you and the people closest to you. In stark contrast to that, Redo of Healer is a show about an unashamedly insane and morally bankrupt manipulative piece of shit with no redeeming qualities who solves all of his problems via revenge rape. But hold on, back up, what was that you just said, did I hear you correctly Mr. Reviewer? “Revenge rape”? Yes, revenge rape. That’s what I said—and that, ladies’ and gentlemen, is why this show is so infamous. Looking in from the outside, it’s easy to think that the lovers and haters of this show are in two distinctly different camps, one side who thinks the other are overly sensitive and tries to justify the actions of the protagonist as being warranted while pointing out how common rape is as a theme present within hentai, using the show’s dark tone to accuse the other party of not liking anything outside the norm, with the other condemning them for implying that rape is ever okay or justified or that just because it’s a common theme in hentai that it’s no big deal, etc. And there is an element of truth to that conflict, but you know what? None of it matters. You know why? Because this show is legitimately just bad. All controversy about the rape scenes aside, what I said before holds true; Redo of Healer is a show that tries to set itself apart by being mature and dark that reeks of immaturity. And at first, you might think that perhaps that’s only limited to the fact that pretty much all of the protagonist’s problems are solved through revenge and his glorification of it, but that’s only the beginning. The world presented to us here is supposed to be very grimdark in its tone, with the general theme being that the heroes are actually bad guys and so is the kingdom perpetuating their ‘righteous’ quest to defeat the demon king; the demons and demi-humans are actually the good guys being oppressed by the Jioral Kingdom, and the threat posed by the demon king to humanity is mostly fabricated by the kingdom as an excuse for their warlike behavior. Now, that’s a cool concept, but the problem is that this world has the depth of a puddle; there is absolutely nothing interesting whatsoever about this conflict, with each major story reveal and plot beat being more disappointing than the last. So much of what happens in the story and explanations for those events are so contrived and nonsensical that it hurts. Keyaru’s healing abilities get progressively more absurd throughout the show to the point where it makes little to no sense anymore towards the end, and there is absolutely no tension in any action scenes because the main character has a combination of both plot armor and copious amounts of in-universe power. In fact, the climactic scene of the final episode where Keyaru fights Hawkeye is one of the most disappointing scenes in the entire show which I’m absolutely okay with spoiling for you; later on, Keyaru steals the magical item needed to obtain a unique weapon for himself from the hero of the sword, which gives him a neat looking gauntlet whose abilities are mostly never explained (aside from auto-healing that lets him survive any non-lethal attack). At the climax of the final fight, he swipes at the air next to Hawkeye who dodges his attack, then suddenly says “I don’t actually need to touch you to use my deterioration healing” and then Hawkeye just fucking explodes. This is literally never explained and makes absolutely no fucking sense whatsoever, and it’s a pretty good encapsulation of what the experience of watching the entire show is like as the plot continues to fly by the seat of its oversized clown pants. Going back to the topic of the universe being grimdark in its themes, it regularly makes attempts to remind you of this in what feels like a desperate bid to try and shock the audience unnecessarily for attention, using shit like revenge rape, violence and racism just for the sake of making things darker as opposed to actually incorporating them into the plot in a meaningful way. Even though the world is supposed to be morally gray, it’s surprisingly polarizing in its depictions of those themes, and legitimately morally gray areas are hardly touched upon at all. About the closest the show comes to exploring moral gray areas is its depiction of the main protagonist, and he’s certainly something alright. Before I say anything about Keyaru, I need you to understand that having a piece of shit as a main protagonist is not an inherently bad thing. It’s fully possible and even an interesting concept to write a story with a really shitty hero/antihero; the problem with Keyaru is not that he’s a bad person, but that he’s a poorly written character. In regards to the moral gray areas of his depiction in the show, there are occasional attempts made to humanize him or have him suffer consequences as a direct result of his childishness and lust for revenge, but the problem is that he never learns from them; throughout the entire show, he brushes off any moments of potential character development and regularly makes excuses defending his rather insane worldviews. And while there’s never a direct reason given for this, it’s pretty clear that a major aspect of his character is that his mind totally broke down during the time period in his past life where he was abused and tortured by his fellow heroes, on top of the extreme trauma inflicted by his own healing powers, turning him into little more than an inhuman husk of his former self. In present, he has no reaction at all when using the power, simply absorbing the information it grants him as if it were completely normal, and has essentially turned into an unfeeling sociopath who laughs in the face of his own losses while using them as the justification and for the perpetuation of his revenge fantasies coming into reality. I’ve seen a lot of people compare Keyaru to Rance (beyond just the fact that both of them can make people’s level caps increase by fucking them and no I’m not kidding, I’m deadly serious), and to be honest I think that Keyaru can be seen as a really twisted caricature of who Rance is; Rance believes that he’s the world’s greatest hero and a standup guy who’s well within his rights to do and take anything and everything, since he deserves it all, whereas Keyaru thinks he’s a hero and a good guy fighting for the sake of justice because everyone else is worse than him, which justifies his actions since hey, that person I raped was a piece of shit right? The major difference between them, though, is that Rance is an intentionally silly character that was written to be a foil to the traditional RPG protagonist—not to mention he goes through significant character development over the course of his games—whereas Keyaru is just a poorly written mess. Many of Rance’s most interesting conflicts and rivalries are with characters who are very similar to himself fighting on the opposite side, and purely for the sake of their own selfish desires as opposed to putting on false masks of heroism, or even seemingly heroic characters who are actually putting on masks far worse than Rance’s own. That, and instances where Rance is actively put in his place by others who are stronger than him, are major aspects of how his character continues to evolve throughout the series, and Redo of Healer does absolutely none of that. Not only does it not do that, it doesn’t really do much of anything to make Keyaru even remotely interesting, which is especially disappointing when you consider just how much potential lies in the concept of his character. Humor me here; imagine being forced to experience the collective memories of so many other people that you lose your own sense of self, seeking out revenge against the people who wronged you on your second go round at life under the false pretense of trying to undo the damage they did, then realizing it was all for nothing and that you’ve provoked them into destroying everything that you once cared about; a cool execution of that idea would be a really complex character grappling with their mixed emotions and trying to come to terms with right and wrong, as opposed to a sociopath who never learns his lesson no matter what the circumstance, therefore never developing as a character and being entirely uninteresting. He’s such a hilariously machiavellian evil schemer it’s hard to take it seriously; he reeks so badly of insincerity that it’s hard to decide whether or not he’s truly deluding himself throughout the story or not. There are scenes where it seems as if the show just outright mocks tropes like “the power of friendship” when the protagonist questions whether or not he’s begun to inadvertently care about protecting the people he’s manipulated, then goes on to acknowledge that he’d still be willing to use them and get them killed for the sake of getting his revenge against the kingdom and its heroes. This is straight up “How not to do an evil protagonist 101”, and in general it plays into the entire theme of this review, wasted potential. There’s so much here that could’ve been cool as hell were it executed properly and the themes used maturely with a world that actually has depth and a plot that actually has an interesting conflict, with not only a far-better portrayal of the protagonist himself but side characters that don’t just exist for the sole purpose of being his one-dimensional punching bags. Or hell, how about some interesting villains—aside from Keyaru himself, I mean. All the villains are extremely boring and one-dimensional evil pieces of shit, not unlike Keyaru himself. That also brings up the question of why the fuck all of the heroes are evil in the first place, considering from what context the show gives the heroes are supposed to be chosen by some sort-of nebulous force, presumably gods considering that Keyaru has a conversation with an unnamed assumed divine entity when he gets his unique weapon, and the prospective demon king mentions the existence of another god. For the record, this is the level of world building we’re talking about here, which helps you to understand when I say this world has the depth of a puddle; over the course of the show, we learn next to fucking nothing about what the fuck is going on in this universe, and all of the aspects of the world that are focused on are explained to us in the most general sense with little to no nuance, all the while you are drip fed the most vague and unrelated shit imaginable. It’s… I can’t even begin to explain to you how long I could keep going on and on about everything this show screws up. Let’s delve into another point of contention, the question that’s been rippling across the internet since the show’s release; “Why didn’t they just make it a hentai?” Let me be real with you for a minute; the show’s artwork and accompanying sex scenes aren’t bad, but the fact that it’s an anime means despite the sex scenes being extremely explicit by regular anime standards, we are still being shown watered down softcore porn. Despite this, though, the show can’t seem to decide whether it exists just for the purpose of being wank material or if the sex is supposed to attribute to the plot. Sometimes the adult scenes have plot relevance, and others it feels like they just threw a sex scene into the episode for the sake of there being a sex scene in the episode. In fact, it’s not too dissimilar from what I said before about throwing in dark themes for the sake of shock value as opposed to actual relevance. If this show was a full on hentai, the plot certainly wouldn’t gain anything from it, which essentially means its validity as a story is practically nothing and no controversy would stem from it, and even if it was good purely as wank material I wouldn’t be talking about it right now. Looking at it that way, I think I honestly believe there’s an element of truth to the idea that the creators were operating under the notion of “Any publicity is good publicity”, which sounds like a fantastic way to run your anime into the ground. But to be honest, that entire debacle is mostly unrelated to my thoughts on what we actually got; let’s not delve too deep into the realm of pointless speculation. I think I’ve said my piece at this point, but there’s a few things I want to mention, the first of which being that as I mentioned before, this show is pretty polarizing and there are legitimately a lot of people out there praising it for doing something different or getting extremely mad about it. I want to go ahead and state for the record that if you enjoyed this show, good for you. I’m honestly glad. In all fairness there are aspects of this show that aren’t bad and, as I said before, lots and lots of potential that I just don’t personally feel was properly utilized. If you’re one of the people out there who thinks this show is an affront to common decency, I’d recommend coming to the realization that there is nothing to be gained from getting your panties in a twist over a show that is very clearly trying to use shock value and excessive grimdark as a way to get reactions from viewers, to the point where the immaturity on display is funny. I mean come the fuck on, the first rape scene has a part where the main character slaps the girl across the face with his dick, how can you possibly expect me to take that seriously? The second is that, to be honest, I think the animators did a pretty decent job trying to hide or obfuscate many bad aspects of the original light novel through the magic of visual adaptation, portraying scenes from the original in ways that make them a lot more interesting than they were originally (If you’re curious, I ended up reading a few chapters of the light novel out of morbid curiousity). Despite this, though, it’s not enough to fix the story they’re adapting, and often ends up sending the viewer mixed signals as to what the mood of certain scenes is actually supposed to be. The music is unmemorable, and the art—while good in parts—is mixed, with one particularly disappointing scene in that regard being the final showdown with Hawkeye as mentioned prior. Finally, and as the ribbon I’ll use to neatly tie this whole mess of a review together, I found out about this show because it got posted on, which is the primary hentai video site I use; seriously, even Interspecies Reviewers isn’t on there and yet this is because memes basically, I’ve gotta admit some of the memes for this show are pretty funny. I don’t recommend this for anybody as anything other than below average fap material or “so bad it’s good” comedy, also the best thing to come out of this show is the reviews on MyAnimeList, peace out losers.

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