Suppose a Kid from the Last Dungeon Boonies Moved to a Starter Town, Vol. 2

By Toshio Satou and Nao Watanuki. Released in Japan as “Tatoeba Last Dungeon Mae no Mura no Shonen ga Joban no Machi de Kurasu Youna Monogatari” by GA Bunko. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Andrew Cunningham.

The good news is this is still a very fun series with a lot of laughs and big goofy characters doing silly things. The bad news is that it is not a series that lives and dies on its character development, so I can see myself having trouble stretching reviews out to 500+ words as we go along. Lloyd is still stupidly strong and overpowered and completely unaware of it. He gathers yet more women into his orbit in this book, without remaining remotely aware of it, of course. Marie, the other seeming “main” character from the first book, is sidelined so hard and with such humiliation here I was tempted to call her Yunyun. The closest we get to serious characterization is Riho Flavin (yes, that’s still her name, a fact I will never get over), whose past catches up with her and whose days may be numbered. That said, this is a very silly comedy. Don’t expect it to kill off major characters.

The main cast remain the same as last time. Lloyd and Marie I mentioned. Sadly, the village chief comes back as well, and she’s not any less annoying. Selen is a mind-blowing yandere, but unlike most of this type, is actually funny. The plot is that there’s a magic tournament that’s located in their hometown this year. Unfortunately, their hometown is filled with muscles, not magic. No one would even want to participate expect Riho is being blackmailed by her childhood friend-turned-archenemy Rol Calcife, who seems to have become a Bond villain, and a pair of sisters. Mena is the sort of girl you’d expect in any other series to be the reporter girl looking for scoops, and she talks a lot. Her sister Phyllo is stoic and also a martial-arts master, looking for the one enemy she isn’t able to defeat. Guess who she finds that fits that bill? So Riho. Selen and Lloyd end up in the tournament after all.

Everything is secondary to the comedy here. Including Lloyd, who after starring in the first volume plays more of a supporting role here. He’s become the big gun that’s pulled out when an instant win is needed. As for the cast additions, my guess is that Phyllo will be the major one going forward. She’s amusing, as seeing Lloyd take her kicks without even reacting (she did break his ribs, but he doesn’t give that away), she is now almost as much a yandere over him as Selen is, just in a stoic way. It gets to the point that when a serious plot point is introduced at the very end, when we see that Rol may not have been fully in control of her evilness, that it feels out of place. We don’t really want this book to get any darker. We want it to be Big Goofy.

That said, this is still predominately great fun, with an excellent translation to match, which gets the book’s ‘no one is above humiliation’ style dead on. If you’re missing KonoSuba and looking for similar zaniness but wish Subaru and Wiz switched personalities, this is right up your alley.

Suppose a Kid from the Last Dungeon Boonies Moved to a Starter Town, Vol. 1

By Toshio Satou and Nao Watanuki. Released in Japan as “Tatoeba Last Dungeon Mae no Mura no Shonen ga Joban no Machi de Kurasu Youna Monogatari” by GA Bunko. Released in North America by Yen On. Translated by Andrew Cunningham.

First things first, this was hilarious. And, unlike some other books I’ve reviweed recently, I mean that in a good way. Last Dungeon Kid is funny in a KonoSuba/Cautious Hero sort of way, with clueless leads, over the top heroines, fourth-wall breaking narration, and “anyone can be the straight man” style humor. Well, anyone except Lloyd, our hero. As the title implies, in the village he grew up in, he’s a weak little kid everyone pities. But the village he grew up in is a legendary village where everything is a next-level monster and the townspeople are all at Level 99. So when he decides to go to the big city, everyone thinks he’s doomed, except the village chief (who has ulterior motives herself). But the city he goes to is not nearly as dangerous or terrifying as his own village… so he’s suddenly stupidly overpowered. If only he realized this.

The humor in this book strikes a nice balance, never settling on being one specific thing, except of course for the premise of “Lloyd thinks he’s a weak wussy kid but is actually stupidly strong”. Six-foot-tall locusts are just ‘pesky bugs’ to him. His strength with a sword annihilates the practice target when he applies to be a soldier. His magic uses ancient runes no one has seen in a thousand years. Major plot points in the book are resolved offscreen by Lloyd simply saying “oh, by the way…” He’s a hoot. He’s also cute, sweet, and can cook and clean just like the perfect wife. Now, this is the first of (so far) eight books, so the reader will have to be aware going into the series that Lloyd is not going to “wise up” anytime soon, as that would defeat the premise. He’s always going to misunderstand. If he keeps up like he does in Book 1, that should be fine.

The rest of the cast are mostly the girls who fall in love with him. I wasn’t impressed with the village chief, but that’s mostly as I don’t like her “type”. We meet a young witch who holes up in a small house in the poor end of town, who turns out to be far more than she seems. She functions as the straight man half the time. The other half is taken up by (I swear I’m not making this up) Riho Flavin, a mercenary who will do anything for money and has a robot arm made of mithril. Yes, despite that description, she’s the normal one of the group, mostly thanks to Selen, a girl who grew up with a cursed leather mask on her face, something almost instantly undone by Lloyd. She proceeds to fall in love with him HARD. I dislike using the term yandere, as it’s frequently applied wrong, but… yeah, that’s what we have here. (Also, the illustrations of her choose to ignore the author’s description so that she can be “really pretty and cute” instead. Shame.)

This book was fun, and looks like the sort of thing that you can easily make a series out of. If you enjoy silly light novels that mock the usual tropes, it’s an absolute winner.