Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation
by Theron Martin,
How would you rate episode 6 of
Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation ?
Last episode, Rudy met Eris and got the first big taste of how much of a handful she is to deal with. This episode fully involves Rudy learning to deal with that handful. And getting too much of a handful is a key part of this episode's edition of Rudy Behaving Badly. Yeah, there's nothing creepy at all about taking advantage of a 9-10 year old girl sleeping to feel her up or trying to take off her panties when your mental age is that of an adult. . . He does at least get a proper thrashing from Eris over this, which makes for the first time that her violence against him has felt fully deserved, but did he learn his lesson? The other edgy scene this episode actually isn't Rudy's fault, but a merchant being rather explicit about describing the effects of an aphrodisiac. Seems strange to be doing that to a boy who only looks about eight years old, even if he looks like he is from a noble household and the merchant is recommending it for Rudy's father.
Aside from the egregious content, the episode has no major events, though it makes up for that by throwing out a lot of interesting little details. One of those is the first full account of the adventuring party that Ghislaine, Paul, and Zenith were all members of. Called The Fangs of the Black Wolf, the party also included three other members that have not been introduced yet: a thief, a cleric, and a second swordswoman. (Interestingly, it's also stressed that “swordsmen” and “fighter” are considered different roles, likely with the former emphasizing offense and the latter emphasizing defense.) Another is the introduction of the floating fortress that was home to Perugius, the Armored Dragon King, and Perugius's crucial role in defeating the Demon Lord. This adds much more to what Roxy said about the lore of the setting back in episode 2, including clarifying that the oddly-named Laplace War was named after the Demon Lord Laplace and that the war to take down Laplace was the defining event for the world's current state of affairs, including its calendar. (This could also be a meaningful naming choice, since “Laplace's demon” is a scientific philosophy concerning determinism in our world.)
On the Greyrat front, both Eris's mother and grandfather get formally introduced. While Eris gets her red hair from her mother, she clearly gets her temperament from her grandfather, who is the first character so far in the series to be a full-blown caricature. This is only reinforced by his ridiculous notion for a proper way to ask for something, and he is clearly the one responsible for all of the maids being beast people. Eris's mother, on the other hand, gives Rudy scant attention and behaves more like a stereotypically standoffish noblewoman. (I'm going to guess here that being dismissive of Rudy has to do with him being Paul's son.) This part also shows for the first time that the Greyrat family is a prominent enough one to have many branches and be steeped enough in politics that Eris's father wants to keep Rudy as an unknown factor for as long as possible. Was Paul the family's black sheep for becoming an adventurer, perhaps?
As for the education of Eris that is the true focus of the episode, she is the kind of problem child that any elementary school teacher and probably all too many parents are familiar with: the hyperactive one who, in addition to being strong-willed, is much more attuned to physical activities, to the point of needing to be convinced that any kind of learning is worthwhile. As problematic as Rudy is on other fronts, I must give him credit for coming up with ways to get through to Eris, especially on the importance of basics like reading, writing, and arithmetic; Ghislaine also learning arithmetic (so she can manage her own money and supplies) is an added bonus, and she seems to be doing it for herself rather than just helping encourage Eris.
Lastly, the world design continues to be as gorgeous as ever visually, and I love all of the well-researched little details, whether it's the candelabra designs, the way books are set out for sale in the store, or the layouts of streets; few other fantasy series of any kind can match this one on the details. However, this is the first episode where the animation effort seemed more ordinary. Hopefully that's not a sign of a new status quo.
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