“Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” – Shalf, the Hesitant Hunk! What About His Strength, Magic, and Relationship with Vierabel?


In “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” Shalf is introduced as a wizard candidate taking the first-class wizard examination. He joins a party with Vierabel and Eren, navigating through various trials together. This article delves into the details of Shalf’s strength, the magic he wields, his weaknesses, and more. Additionally, it will introduce Yuji Murai, the voice actor who portrayed Shalf in the anime adaptation of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” along with his profile and other works.

Shalf in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” – The Hesitant Hunk

“Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” is a fantasy manga featuring heroes and wizards. As the protagonists are wizards, the manga is rich in magical depictions. Notably, the wizards shine in the “First-Class Wizard Examination Arc,” where numerous unique wizards appear and engage in intense battles.

Shalf, the wizard introduced during this arc, brings a fresh dynamic to the battles, different from Frieren or Fern’s fighting styles. Let’s take a closer look at Shalf from “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” exploring his strength, magic, weaknesses, and more. The article will also cover Yuji Murai, the voice actor behind Shalf in the anime, providing insight into his career.

“Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” – Background Information

  • Overview of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

“Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” is a manga serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday. It first appeared in the combined 22nd and 23rd issue of Weekly Shonen Sunday in 2020. The story is conceived by Kanehito Yamada, with Tsukasa Abe handling the illustrations. “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” has won the 14th Manga Taisho, the 25th Tezuka Osamu Cultural Prize New Creator Prize, and the 69th Shogakukan Manga Award.

About a year and a half after the serialization began, the anime adaptation was announced and started broadcasting on the Nippon Television Network in September 2023. Episodes 1 to 4 were broadcast together during the Friday Roadshow. On streaming sites, episodes are available individually. The anime is scheduled for two consecutive cours, planning to air a total of 28 episodes by March 2024.

  • Synopsis of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

Frieren, the wizard of the hero’s party, defeated the Demon King with her companions. As an elf, Frieren perceives time differently from humans and embarked on a solo journey to collect magic for 50 years. When she finally reunites with her companions, she finds they have aged significantly. Following the death of the hero Himmel, Frieren realizes she knew little about him, prompting her to start a new journey to understand people better.

Shalf’s Profile in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

Shalf, introduced in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” is a tall third-class wizard with a unique hairstyle, featuring a back-swept hairdo and a buzz cut on the lower half of his head. A distinctive long bang sweeps across his face. His age is not disclosed within the story.

Given his tendency to seek comfort from Vierabel, it’s likely that Shalf is younger than her. Since Vierabel is in her early 30s, it’s speculated that Shalf is in his mid to late 20s. He is an intellectually inclined wizard who learned magic on his own, but he’s also known for his whining.

Shalf’s Strength, Magic, and Weakness in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

“Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” features a variety of wizards, each wielding unique magic and demonstrating varying levels of strength. Depending on compatibility, a third-class wizard like Shalf can defeat a first-class wizard. So, what level of strength does Shalf possess?

This section thoroughly explains the magic used by Shalf and his strength as a wizard. It also mentions Shalf’s weaknesses, exploring what they are alongside his magical abilities and strengths.

Shalf’s Magic to Transform Petals into Steel

In the world of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” contemporary wizards frequently use basic attack magic (Zoltrark). However, since basic attack magic can easily be blocked by defense magic, almost all wizards have their own specialty magic. Shalf’s specialty is a magic spell (Juberado) that transforms petals into steel, allowing him to attack opponents with countless steel petals.

Rant, who fought Shalf during the first-class wizard exam, openly admired this magic. The ability to transform petals into steel, bypassing the opponent’s defense magic, makes it one of the stronger attack spells. Additionally, the steel petals can be collected to form a shield. However, the magic’s weakness is its reliance on the presence of petals, which is countered in the original story by Shalf carrying a bouquet of flowers.

In the anime adaptation, this aspect was modified, showing Shalf using magic to create a flower field. Indeed, if he can produce a flower field at will, carrying a bouquet becomes unnecessary. This adaptation allows anime Shalf to overcome one of his weaknesses, effectively making him stronger than his manga counterpart.

Shalf Struggles with Magic Detection

While the anime version of Shalf has eliminated his magical weaknesses, he still has other vulnerabilities. Notably, Shalf struggles with magic detection. Having taught himself magic without attending a magic school, he missed out on learning the basics, including “magic detection,” which is fundamental for wizards. This weakness was exploited by Rant during their battle, leading to Shalf’s quick defeat.

Magic detection is an essential skill for wizards, as lacking it can significantly disadvantage one in combat. Given Shalf’s ability to wield powerful magic, this weakness is particularly regrettable. Overcoming this deficiency could potentially make Shalf much stronger.

However, this weakness can be compensated by forming a party. In the first-class wizard exam’s preliminary round, Shalf fought one-on-one against Rant but joined forces with Vierabel and Erel for the secondary round. With Erel and Vierabel, who excel in magic detection, by his side, Shalf’s shortfall in this area became negligible.

Shalf’s Equipment

In “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” Shalf’s primary equipment is his magic wand. The wand is as tall as Shalf himself, slender, and pointed at the end. Shalf does not carry the wand with him at all times, opting to use it exclusively when casting spells. His attire is designed for ease of movement, without wearing a cape or any other potentially cumbersome garments. There’s no indication that his clothes enhance his magic, suggesting that his only equipment is the magic wand.

The Relationship Between Shalf and Vierabel in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

So far, we’ve covered the strengths, weaknesses, and magical abilities of Shalf from “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.” Next, let’s delve into his relationship with Vierabel, with whom he often teamed up within the story. Relationships with characters other than Vierabel are also explained, so please refer to them as well.

The Relationship Between Shalf and Vierabel

In “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” Shalf becomes part of the same party as Vierabel during the first-class wizard exam. Shalf and Vierabel share a close bond, with Shalf even asking for piggyback rides during the exam. It’s not depicted in the story whether Shalf and Vierabel knew each other beforehand.

After the preliminary exam, Shalf continues to accompany Vierabel, even joining her on non-exam related extermination requests. They seem to have grown quite close, heading home together after the exam. While Shalf behaves coolly in front of other candidates, he sometimes acts like a spoiled child in front of Vierabel. This indicates the level of trust Shalf places in Vierabel.

The Relationship Between Shalf and Lichter

Shalf and Lichter, from “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” are both candidates who took the first-class wizard exam at the same time. They were never in the same party nor fought against each other; in fact, they barely interacted, making their relationship almost non-existent. Despite this, there have been speculations about some connection between Shalf and Lichter due to their names.

The names Shalf and Lichter, derived from German, translate to “sharp” and “judge” in Japanese, respectively. While this doesn’t suggest any direct correlation, combining Shalf and Lichter’s names translates to “executioner,” sparking rumors of a potential connection between them. However, as of volume 12 of the original work, there is no interaction between the two, and the name correlation might just be coincidental.

The Relationship Between Shalf and Erel

Erel, like Vierabel, was part of the same party as Shalf during the preliminary round of the first-class wizard exam. While Shalf and Erel acted together during the exam, there’s no indication of a particularly close relationship between them. Shalf and Erel ended up spending more time together because they both admired Vierabel. There’s no significant interaction shown in the story, but it’s clear they became more familiar with each other compared to other candidates.

Shalf’s Personality and the Possibility of His Return in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

Shalf from “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” is often referred to by fans as a “HetaReIkemen” (a term combining “inept” and “handsome”). But is Shalf truly inept? This section delves into Shalf’s personality and explores the possibility of his reappearing in the story after the first-class wizard exam.

Shalf’s Personality

Why is Shalf perceived as “inept” by fans? During the first-class wizard exam battles, Shalf frequently asks Vierabel to carry him on her back when he’s unable to move. This behavior likely led fans to view him as inept. However, in his battle against Lantz, Shalf also shows a ruthless side, exhibiting neither reluctance nor fear in combat, suggesting he’s not entirely inept.

Shalf’s self-taught magic skills reflect his diligent nature. Yet, his quickness to ask for piggyback rides could indicate a lack of determination. This aspect might be considered one of Shalf’s weaknesses. Throughout the series, Shalf is depicted following Vierabel’s lead and cooperating with party members, indicating he is cooperative. If Shalf had a more assertive personality, it might have led to conflicts with Vierabel, a leader-like figure. It’s Shalf’s ability to work well with others that likely facilitated successful collaboration with Vierabel.

The Possibility of Shalf’s Return

New characters introduced during the first-class wizard exam mostly concluded their roles with the exam’s end. However, characters like Denken and Metode have reappeared in later episodes. So, is there a possibility for Shalf’s return? After the exam, Shalf travels to a port city with Vierabel and Erel, but their further destinations are unknown. If Shalf’s hometown is in the north, where Frieren and her companions are headed, there’s a chance for a reunion. Given that Shalf traveled to the port city, it’s likely he may be returning to the north, potentially setting the stage for a future encounter with Frieren’s group.

Spoilers on Shalf’s Achievements in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

Shalf is a newly introduced character in the first-class wizard exam arc of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.” As of volume 12, Shalf only appears during the first-class wizard exam arc and subsequently in episode 63. Let’s dive into Shalf’s contributions within the story of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.”

Shalf’s Debut

Shalf first appears in episode 39 of “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” during a moment one day into the first-class wizard exam. The exam’s first task was to capture a “Meteorite Bird (Schtile),” and candidates formed trios to hunt for the bird. The first to catch a Meteorite Bird was Fern’s group, Team 4.

While Fern’s group felt relieved after capturing the bird, Lantz and Uebel knew other candidates might target their bird. They decided to lay low until the exam ended, but Team 8, including Shalf, discovered them before they could hide.

Team 4 was ambushed by Vierabel, but thanks to Fern’s quick defense, they avoided damage. Vierabel, Shalf, and Erel then made their appearance, marking Shalf’s first introduction. Vierabel spoke on behalf of the group, with Shalf and Erel staying silent but ready for battle.

Shalf in the First Exam

In the first exam, Shalf teamed up with Vierabel and Erel as part of Team 8. They decided to target Team 4, which had already captured a Meteorite Bird. Vierabel launched an attack hoping to kill, but Fern managed to defend against it.

The teams then engaged in one-on-one battles, with Shalf facing Lantz from Team 4. Using his unique magic to turn petals into steel (Jubelado), Shalf managed to slice Lantz’s arm, crippling him. Confident in his victory, Shalf didn’t anticipate Lantz’s next move. Lantz, using a decoy, surprised Shalf from behind, resulting in Shalf’s defeat by an electric attack to the neck.

Meanwhile, the battle between Vierabel and Erel concluded with Erel’s supposed death, causing Vierabel to accept defeat under the false impression shared by Fern. However, Erel was merely unconscious from magic depletion, not dead. This twist spared Team 8 from further combat since the exam’s win condition required no team member losses. Vierabel carried Erel while using magic to transport Shalf, who had requested a piggyback ride due to paralysis.

Following the exam, Shalf’s actions continued to be highlighted. During the break before the second exam, Shalf remained close to Vierabel, and they both agreed to help with a hunting request unrelated to the exam. Despite the end of their official exam collaboration, Shalf’s willingness to assist Vierabel indicates a close bond formed through their shared experiences.

Shalf’s Achievements in the Second Exam

The second exam of the first-class wizard exam in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” involved conquering the dungeon known as the King’s Ruins of Decline. After the first exam, the teams disbanded, and in the second exam, there was no need for candidates to compete against each other. One of the candidates, Denken, believed that cooperation among the candidates was necessary to pass the second exam. However, after competing against each other in the first exam, it was unrealistic to expect sudden camaraderie, and only a few candidates agreed to cooperate with Denken.

Vierabel, unable to trust other candidates, invited Shalf, who had fought alongside her in the first exam, to enter the dungeon. Erel followed suit, and thus, the team from the first exam tackled the second exam together. Upon entering the dungeon, Shalf, Vierabel, and Erel made steady progress without significant trouble until they neared the dungeon’s deepest part, where Erel was magically bound by an unknown assailant.

Realizing the magic used on Erel was a binding spell (Solganir) that activates upon sight, Vierabel instructed Shalf to block the view. Shalf used his magic (Jubelado) to transform petals into steel, creating a wall of steel petals that prevented the assailant from seeing Erel, thus releasing him from the bind. While hiding behind the wall, Vierabel checked the assailant’s identity, discovering their own duplicates.

Considering their compatibility, Vierabel tasked Shalf with confronting her duplicate. They cooperated to defeat their duplicates and then met with Metode, who informed them about the creature creating the duplicates. While Frieren and Fern confronted Frieren’s duplicate, the others were tasked with holding off the remaining duplicates.

The trio faced Denken’s duplicate, managing to defeat it, but Shalf and Erel were exhausted and could no longer move. Like in the first exam, Vierabel carried the two, and they reached the deepest part of the dungeon together. Thanks to the efforts of other candidates and Vierabel’s assistance, Shalf successfully passed the second exam.

Shalf’s Role in the Third Exam

The third exam of the first-class wizard exam was supposed to be even more challenging than the first and second exams. However, this time, candidates who lacked sufficient skills managed to pass the second exam. This situation was largely due to Frieren’s influence, as even those without significant abilities were able to advance to the third exam thanks to her strength.

Zeliere, the head of the Continental Magic Association, was concerned about this situation. While it was normal for the wizard exam to result in casualties, Zeliere did not wish for pointless deaths. Thus, in an unprecedented move, Zeliere decided to determine the third exam’s passers through interviews. Although Shalf had somehow made it through the first and second exams, he was immediately deemed unfit by Zeliere upon their meeting.

Considering the content of the first and second exams, it’s evident that Shalf would have failed if not for Vierabel’s assistance. Zeliere’s judgment that Shalf did not possess the strength to become a first-class wizard was not unreasonable. After failing the exam, Shalf, along with Erel who also failed, were dejected. Vierabel, seeing their disappointment, cheerfully consoled them, suggesting there would be future opportunities.

Shalf’s Activities After the Exam

After the completion of the first-class wizard exam, Shalf set off on his return journey. He decided to travel back with Vierabel and Erel, his teammates from the first exam, for part of the way. Frieren and her companions, who were heading to the northernmost point of Eden, shared part of their journey with Shalf and encountered him again at an inn along the way.

Vierabel, happy to reunite with Shulk, whom she had become friendly with during the lion boar (Fresser) subjugation, invited him to join the front lines in the battle against the demons. Shalf also joined them at the dining table, enjoying a meal together in good spirits. Shulk, however, declined Vierabel’s invitation, and that was where he parted ways with Shalf and the others.

Voice Actor for Shalf in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

Following Shalf’s exploits in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End,” let’s delve into the voice actor behind his character in the anime adaptation. As “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End” was being adapted into an anime, information about the voice actors was gradually released. However, since Shalf appears in the second cour of the anime, his voice actor remained undisclosed until closer to his debut. It wasn’t until the end of the first cour and the approach of the second that the voice actors for characters appearing in the first-class wizard exam were finally revealed.

The announcement regarding Shalf’s voice actor came relatively late, with the revelation occurring just before his appearance. Yuji Murai was chosen to voice Shalf in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.” Given that Yuji Murai has only been active as a voice actor in recent years, some may not be familiar with him. Here, we will introduce Yuji Murai’s profile, including his roles in previous works and characters he has portrayed.

Profile of Yuji Murai

Yuji Murai, born on April 17th, has not disclosed his year of birth, making his age unknown. He hails from Akita Prefecture and stands at 177 cm tall. In 2013, he became affiliated with Wahaha Honpo, and in 2015, he joined the Stay Luck workshop. By 2016, Murai officially became a member of Stay Luck. His talents include baseball, drumming, and wood carving.

Notable Roles and Characters by Yuji Murai

Here are some key roles and characters voiced by Yuji Murai. Since 2016, Murai has voiced characters in TV anime, including Jacob in “Yu-Gi-Oh! ARC-V” and Tōmaki in “Yowamushi Pedal.”

Additionally, he has voiced unnamed characters in several anime series such as “Gintama,” “BANANA FISH,” “Juni Taisen,” “FAIRY TAIL,” and “Jujutsu Kaisen.” More recently, he has voiced roles like Drabridge in “Magica Party,” Gwen in “SPY×FAMILY,” and Enbelits in “Made in Abyss: The Golden City of the Scorching Sun,” showcasing his active involvement in the voice acting industry.

Summary of Shalf in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End”

This article has summarized Shalf’s strengths, weaknesses, and his anime voice actor in “Frieren: Beyond Journey’s End.” Shalf makes his appearance during the first-class wizard exam, successfully passing both the first and second exams. However, he unfortunately does not pass the third exam, failing to become a first-class wizard. Despite this, Shalf demonstrates his prowess throughout the series, using his magic to manipulate countless petals for both offense and defense.

Although Shalf has limited interactions with Frieren, he seems to have formed a good relationship with Shulk. Since the end of the first-class wizard exam, Shalf has not made another appearance, but there’s a possibility for his return in future chapters. For those who wish to see Shalf’s performance again, revisiting the first-class wizard exam arc is highly recommended.

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