The Faraway Paladin is one of those shows that don’t know what they want to be. It’s supposed to be an isekai, although that doesn’t play any part in the plot besides making a few vague references to our world. In essence the author threw it in there because isekai sell more than clear-cut fantasy stories. Oh, and also because it’s a cheap explanation for why the protagonist is overpowered. It’s not because he trained hard all his life, it’s because he’s an otaku loser from our world.
PACING? WHAT IS THAT?
The pacing is also messed up, since there is close to nothing going on in terms of action in the early episodes. Instead of that you get prolonged infodumps in an area that is empty of life and with nothing to look at in general. Then, out of nowhere, the protagonist can defeat gods with not much training. Supposed this was done for giving the viewer the time to get to like the main characters before the action adventure portion of the story begins, but it was done in a very dull way. There is nothing special about the protagonist you haven’t seen in a myriad other shows, the support cast of monsters won’t follow him when he leaves so you getting to like them amounts to nothing, and when the action part begins you are eye-rolling with how out of left-field it is.
OLYMPIC GAMES TONE JUMP
Even the tone of the plot is wrong, as it starts like a grim slice of life and then abruptly becomes a light-hearted action adventure. It’s not the first show that has sudden tone jumps, but the amount of things happening in each episode is too small and unimportant to excuse their duration, and the jump to a different genre altogether is way too sudden. He just pledges to a deity and gets a power up that lets him beat the demon lord. Most viewers gave up on the show because of it, and were instead watching Mushoku Tensei, a different isekai that did the exact same things ten times better.
BEING PATIENT FOR GETTING A GENERIC FANTASY SHOW
But even if, for whatever reason, some people didn’t jump ship to Mushoku Tensei and kept on with the show after the boring slice of life part was over, all they got was a generic fantasy show where, as I said, the isekai part doesn’t matter and it’s just a bland overpowered guy going around, easily defeating all the enemies, and getting constantly rewarded from the local population. I mean, why wouldn’t he? The very first enemy he defeated was the strongest monster in the world, and he did it with no battle experience. What can possibly pose a challenge after that, or be a worthy enough reward?
THIS AIN’T DEMON SLAYER
But even if someone is pleased with all that nonsense, the anime just doesn’t look so good. The production values are subpar, the CGI is awful, the colors are flat, and the character designs are bland. In the post-Demon Slayer era that means nobody will remember it after a couple of weeks. Thus, as a whole, The Faraway Paladin did nothing right. All its chances to be remembered for something it did better than any of its contemporaries were squandered early on, and what was left in the second half was a by the numbers fantasy adventure.
I agree with every point you made. I felt this was a pat on the head story, telling us to wait, that it would get us there eventually. It's not bad, but not necessisarily good. It is what it is...just average and forgetable.