by Theron Martin,
How would you rate episode 7 of
Isekai Quartet ?
So far the half-episode format (really just under 10 minutes long with a full opener and closer) has suited Isekai Quartet just fine. However, episode 7 is the first time that I have strongly wished for the runtime to be a little longer. This episode is the thinnest one to date content-wise, accomplishing the least in both its humor and storytelling. It's also the weakest in terms of cast balance, as it almost entirely deals with the Re:Zero and Overlord casts, with decided emphasis on the former.
But rating the episode down for that alone wouldn't be fair, because it does nicely accomplish the task of generating chemistry between disparate characters. I had totally forgotten about Hamsuke(1), but it makes sense that she would be the pet that the animal care team has to look after; the joke about her gnawing on Subaru is only a little funny the first time around but works better with repetition. Beatrice getting along just fine with Mare in the library was to be expected (I can see them getting pretty close, although the Re:Zero members seem unaware that Mare is a boy), as was the morning announcements becoming a battle between Megumin and one of Tanya's flunkies. Also as expected, Emilia can get along with anyone if given half the chance; she never got to attend school or interact normally with people in her world, so this must be paradise for her. (As a total side note, this is also the first time that we've seen anything about where these characters are living while attending school.)
Aside from the revelation that everyone is going to the beach next, the most interesting development in this episode is that Ains can see the Curse By Death that envelops Subaru's heart.(2) Since Subaru is unable to tell anyone about this, that makes Ains the first person to learn this dark truth about Subaru, and while we don't see any sign of him using analysis magic, I have to wonder if he didn't at least get the gist by looking at it. Since they're from different worlds, Ains bringing this up in private wouldn't cause any story problems either. It will be interesting to see whether or not this has any consequences down the line in Isekai Quartet.
As a final note, I have gotten to see the Saga of Tanya the Evil movie since last week's episode, and can now firmly conclude that this series takes place before the events of that movie.
- Hamsuke, a giant djungarian hamster, is the former “Wise King of the Forest” near Nazarick in Overlord. Ains defeated her easily and has taken her as a pet/mount. She now loyally serves Nazarick, believing herself to be the only one of her kind, hence her earnestness when she learns that Subaru knows about her species.
- This is what allows Subaru to time-slip back to a save point when he dies, though it also squeezes his heart if he tries to tell anyone about it.
Isekai Quartet is currently streaming on Funimation.
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