The Usual Starting Cliches
Yeah, this is titled in this way because what I am about to say is a pretty large cliche to the anime community. I don’t watch or seek out modern isekai anime to enjoy. The last one before this Log Horizon Season 3 with Grimgar being years before that one. Though, I do admit that Bookworm has intrigued me for a while. But in general if I am going to watch an isekai anime, it’s going to be an older one. A series from the 90’s or 80’s which has either started a lot of the tropes we are in now or does some interesting with them. A lot of modern isekai anime series, despite people complaining about watching and saying this, are kind of boring.
What intrigued me about this one is that The Executioner and Her Way Of Life is very observant and critical about modern isekai tropes. Which is what made me a bit more curious about what this show is going to be about. I did here about the first episode where our assassin protagonist Menou murdered the usual would be protagonist, Itsuki, of what feels like a modern, standard isekai. The anime series is about her after all and who she is trying to kill, Akari, whose abilities won’t allow her to be murdered by the conventional and usual means. It’s basically a series about these two on a road trip to kill Akari while the girls get closer to one another.
The World of the Executioner
The most interesting part behind the world is that it’s a world that has been ravaged and almost torn apart by lost ones. Those being the kids that appear from the very specific country of Japan and come with overwhelming powers. Powers that have caused devastation in this world for hundreds of years with one of them, Pandemonium, being a literal void for people to avoid in the sea for a very long time to the point where it’s a horrible feature that has untold horrors in them. Basically, it’s like an eldritch being waiting to wake up. Oh, maybe I shouldn’t have said anything.
So with the church with executioners given the job to destroy lost ones, there is so much about this world which is explained by characters using different modes of transportation from place to place and character visiting cities for specific amounts of time. Ether is what the magic is called and it can run modern devices like trains to boats and probably so many other things. Priests who kill these “Lost Ones” with strong abilities that can destroy worlds ride on them, because I’m sure there is more out there than Menou. Oh, there are lots of normal people too. Everything also takes money, because Menou has to stop at every church for money to keep traveling.
Characters, Conspiracies, and Realities
Executioner’s characters are rather simple and kind of one note. Menou for instance is an assassin sent on mission, is attractive because the show states it, assassinates those would be isekai protagonists, has a small amount of Ether who she relies on skill, and has a soft heart. She becomes a priestess after seeing Flare, an older and stronger killer, save her from the lost ones that destroyed her town. Then there is Akari who is the isekai protagonist who lives Menou and automatically clings to Menou the second she sees hers and she controls time. Momo is Menou’s assistant in the shadows who does all the hard work and is kept secret from Akari as far as we know. Then Princess Ashuna is a blood knight and loves the thrill of fighting.
So on that front, Executioner is rather basic until some reveals are shown and then there is an added layer to the show we are seeing and the tragedy of it all. Akari, for instance, has the Homura in Madoka problem where she has turned back time so many times to prevent Menou’s death. This has caused her to lose some memories, but she doesn’t care and she wants to save Menou from death no matter what the cost is or how many time loops she goes on. Thus the two girls on a road trip becomes an intriguing game where one tries to kill the other and see which Akari shows up in what situation because there is one central Akari guiding the plot along.
Which leads to a lot of the conspiracies in the show. The church one with Orwell’s attempt at becoming immortal is one that needs to be talked about. Especially regarding how that is happening underneath the church she is leading for the worst possible results. All on top of this is Flare who is meant to kill Menou at some point because Flare is a gigantic obstacle. The difference in these regards being that Flare also know about the many times that time has been pushed reset by Akari in the ending stinger. As the two, Flare and Akari, are the only two that know about it, the entire show is a game between Akari and Flare that we don’t even see an ending too. Man. I am glad that this texture was hidden in the show to make it so interesting.
Concluding (ha, please give us a sequel) Thoughts
On a visual level, The Executioner and Her Way Of Life is generally solid. Wonderful character designs with tons of personality, women who has different body shapes and sizes, and a great world with many facets and locations to all of it. Pretty fair right? Plus the character animation is generally solid giving all of them a very distinct sort of personality. The action animation is ok. Solid over all, but doesn’t have the energy or prowess to make it work as well as it could have. There is no real wow factor when its needed like seeing Momo exploding with energy and causing destruction. She isn’t a lot one, but her ether levels are great.
Which comes along with my thoughts on the show too. I really like Executioner, but I don’t love it. It doesn’t hit all the marks that I want it to even with it’s good twist on the modern isekai genre with good characters and a world that is explained by characters interacting with things instead of too much exposition. If a sequel season comes out, I will definitely watch it. But I feel like it’s missing a certain wow factor on all levels to make it any sort of attention grabbing then it is. There needs to be more to get audiences drawn into it more considering that it’s on hidive. But I would recommend this series quite a bit. It’s such a good time.