The Executioner and His Way of Life: The Spring 2022 Preview Guide

What’s this?

The Lost are wanderers who come here from a distant world known as “Japan”. No one knows how or why they leave their homes. The only thing certain is that they bring disaster and calamity. The duty to exterminate them without remorse falls to Menou, a young Executioner. When he meets Akari, he seems like just another job until he discovers that it’s impossible to kill her. And when Menou starts looking for a way to defeat this immortality, Akari is more than happy to tag along.

The executioner and his way of life is based on mato sato and Nilitsu‘s light novel series and airs on HIDE Fridays.

How was the first episode?

Nicholas Dupree


I have no words to express how big a breath of fresh air this premiere was. Every season we get what feels like half a dozen versions of the same show. A little bit of Melvin is thrown into a fantasy world that works just as conveniently as his favorite video game, he develops Übermensch fantasy powers that make all the pretty girls want to date him and/or be enslaved by him, and we have to pretend that he does. we have done. I haven’t seen that exact premise 40 times in the last year. So to have a show with an honest smart version of the standard isekai setup, not some crazy gimmick to stick on the cover, but a really cool idea that goes beyond a kiddie pool, and takes place in a flash. fascinating and developed fantasy world? It feels like a small miracle.

Really, everything about this premiere is just really good anime storytelling. From the moment Menou approaches our anonymous isekai potato man, there is a sense that she is not the innocent maiden offering to help him out of the kindness of her heart as she introduces herself. But even before she finishes the ruse, she expresses a ton of personality: sarcasm, humor, just things you want to see in a character who rarely stands out with the female leads in isekai history. And the premiere wisely doesn’t wait the entire runtime to reveal her hand, with Menou executing her charge with brutal efficiency by the time she unlocks her OP’s special ability, less than half the episode. By not stretching that bait and changing, we get to see Menou in her element, learning about who she is and why she works as an otherworldly executioner for the church, as well as a ridiculously compelling view of the world around her.

That part is especially important to me. This is a world that, while it has some similarities to other standard isekai fantasy settings, feels like it has a story. This is a world with an established caste structure that is, however, in dispute between the church and the nobles. This is a place that has been drawing randos from Japan for so long that its influences have largely shaped the culture of the people who live there. This is a place with cool and clever fantasy devices, like our executioners’ books of Scripture that allow them to communicate and cast spells with very different effects. It’s just a cool, interesting world that you want to spend time in and learn more about, and it’s a rarity in today’s isekai zeitgeist.

And while his riffs on isekai tropes might have felt like baseball, so far it’s been a pretty thoughtful, albeit critical, look at conceit rather than just conscious references. It’s certainly not the first series to posit that giving insecure teens god-like powers is a bad idea, but the show focuses on the cruel tragedy of it all rather than going for edgy shock value. The scene of the Lost One inadvertently killing all of Menou’s people by turning them into pillars of salt is both a great horror and immediately shows that these people Menou and his compatriots are sent to kill are dangerous, but not inherently evil. . They are people who are way above their heads and even if Menou feels that killing them is the right thing to do, he acknowledges that they did not deserve that fate. That’s a really compelling conflict for both the story and Menou’s character, and I’m really interested in seeing it play out with his next target. Although if he was here, he would have killed the first guy the moment he talked about bringing mayonnaise into his world. That is the real danger worth eliminating.

In all this is the best kind of premiere you can ask for. It’s exciting, compelling, superbly animated, and gives you every reason to come back for more. If you’re understandably wary of another isekai fantasy story trying to be dark and edgy, put those concerns aside, because this one is absolutely a keeper.

Rebecca Silverman


This show has a good premise, though not entirely unique, and I think I liked it better when it was done in Kazamidori‘s Goodbye Another World, See You Tomorrowthat is full of melancholy and is a little less on the nose than The executioner and his way of life. Both stories take on the idea that all those pesky Japanese teenagers who keep getting summoned to their fantasy worlds are causing more (or at least as much) harm than good, but whereas in the first the world has suffered an apocalyptic event at the time . our hero is summoned, in the latter the goal is to prevent an apocalyptic scenario by killing Lost Ones, as isekai victims are known. That opens the door to our eponymous hangman, and I have to say his introduction is very well handled. The misdirection that we’re getting another isekai story every day about a bullied teenager summoned to another world is well done, and when Menou pulls the knife out of him and plunges it into his skull, he comes out of nowhere.

Or if? There are some good details leading up to the reveal that work in the first half of the episode’s favor, like how Japanese culture is slowly taking over the indigenous culture of the fantasy world, and Mitsuki’s first thoughts upon realizing that he has the power. to “nullify” (like erase from existence) is that now no one can mistreat him because he will destroy them before they have a chance. It’s an abrupt change for him from being totally dependent on Menou and a bit sad, but since his first words in the new world are that no one can mess with him again, they’re not completely out of line. blue. It definitely feels like a statement about the kind of character we normally see in isekai power fantasies, and while the killing is objectively bad, it’s also not hard to see why Menou and her church members kill the Lost and berate who summon them. .

The first half is much stronger than the second, largely because it doesn’t involve Momo, our necessary predatory lesbian. Momo’s obsession with Menou (and her groping party) absorbs all of the plot’s tension and interest, and as the story tries to recover from her ill-advised entrance into the scene, it’s a struggle. The potential that Menou and the other Lost One summoned with Mitsuki, a girl who is being held in the castle he was kicked out of, could have a romantic or other bond based on mutual dreams with each other across the world is a definite mark on the favor of the show, but the way Momo handled herself worries me that the storytelling isn’t up to par. It may be worth another episode to see how that plot unfolds (and how much Momo is going to be in the story), but while this is fine, I think the other book does it better.