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Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation II
Episode 19

by Richard Eisenbeis,

How would you rate episode 19 of
Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation II (TV 4) ?
Community score: 4.3

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This is one of those episodes that shows just how much effort is being put into Mushoku Tensei. Many studios bring their A-game to a show's climatic moments—be they action-based or emotion-based. But few do so when it comes to the least important episodes of the series.

What we have in this episode is a largely inconsequential part of the story. To be a bit reductive, Rudues and Elinalise simply need to get from Point A to Point B—a journey that will take around a month. We could have skipped a huge chunk of this episode, perhaps replaced with a montage of a few static shots.

However, what we get is the exact opposite. Instead of rushing through the boring parts, Mushoku Tensei works to make them interesting. What comes out of this is a series of short vignettes—mini-adventures of the two's travels across the desert. They encounter giant monsters, fight off a succubus, and deal with Elinalise's curse. Each of these scenes serves as solid character beats for the two—not to mention the fact that the fight scenes are so wonderfully animated, that you'd think this was a season finale for any other show.

The episode is also bolstered by the amount of time it spends on the pair's actual departure. While the last episode ended with Rudeus deciding to go, there's still much logistics work. While Elinalise plans to disappear in the middle of the night to avoid any messy emotional entanglements, Rudeus commits to doing the hard work. He starts by telling his wife and sisters of his choice and then moves on to tell each of his friends.

You can see how much it hurts him to do this, especially when it comes to Sylphy and Nanahoshi. Despite how painful it is for them, he has to watch as each gives him their blessing. Yet, being a mature adult about the whole situation bears unexpected fruit: Nanahoshi gives him access to a teleport gate, turning a years-long round trip into a months-long one.

His being upfront about everything also inspires Elinalise to do the same, and things work out well for her too. Not only does she get the latest magic device to help suppress her curse but Cliff also proposes to her, showing he's in this for the long haul, even if her responsibilities take her far from his side and her curse forces her to be “unfaithful.” Communication wins the day. Who would have thought?

Frankly, I'm impressed with this episode overall. This could have been glossed over as filler. Instead, it has emotional weight and a sense of adventure. Seeing that those working on this anime care enough to go the extra mile (even when they don't need to) makes me care about it all the more in return.

Rating:

Random Thoughts:

• Poor Sylphy. Not only is she pregnant for the first time while her Grandmother and Husband are away, but she also has to take care of two kids.

• As a person who has ridden a draft horse before (aka a giant horse like the one we see in this episode), I couldn't help but laugh watching Rudeus and Elinalise double up on one. People don't generally ride draft horses because their backs are so wide that it hurts to have your legs spread so far apart in that position for long periods—like say a full day of riding through the woods. Sure, having a giant horse adds a fantasy feel to the setting but simply having two normal-sized horses would be infinitely more practical.

• I was sad at the lack of sandworms in this episode. Shai-Hulud is not pleased.

• Considering how low Paul sunk the last time he was at an impasse reaching his wife, I wonder if we're in for a recreation of their last father/son fight. Or perhaps Rudeus has grown enough over time to see past his pain and support his father in his time of need.

Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation II is currently streaming on Crunchyroll.



Disclosure: Kadokawa World Entertainment (KWE), a wholly owned subsidiary of Kadokawa Corporation, is the majority owner of Anime News Network, LLC. One or more of the companies mentioned in this article are part of the Kadokawa Group of Companies.


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