Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation
by Theron Martin,
How would you rate episode 7 of
Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation ?
More so than any previous episode, this one follows predictable story beats. The episode was entertaining and satisfying enough despite the predictability, provided that you can either tolerate or overlook Rudy's less savory inclinations. (This statement should probably be a given at this point.)
Actually, calling the episode “predictable” may not be fair. A more accurate statement might be that the episode follows progressions wholly natural and logical for what it is and what it has shown before, including in its use of humor. It also clearly sets itself up for events later in the episode on multiple occasions.
The most significant application of that starts at the very beginning, with Eris dodging around and practicing her footwork in combat drills with Ghislaine. The principles behind footwork for fighting are not much removed from the principles behind the footwork for dancing, but as Rudy eventually recognizes, they operate at different paces: combat footwork must be quick and reactive, whereas dance footwork must be at a set tempo and in sync with the partner. That Eris's matronly dance instructor never thought to draw such a connection is no surprise, as she doubtlessly does not spend time watching sword training, but being aware of such a possible connection will no doubt help in future lessons for Eris and others; indeed, she seemed genuinely grateful. Ghislaine also seemed to appreciate the way Rudy drew the connection and used it to coach Eris through the dancing in terms she could better understand. Little touches like this round out the storytelling nicely.
On other fronts, that Eris had to dance as part of her debut is also no surprise; that's been an aspect of nobility and the wealthy in Europe for centuries, even up through at least the early stages of the 20th century. Doing it at age 10 seems on the young side, and the others being so quickly and harshly judgmental based just on a 10-year-old tripping up on the dancing seems exaggerated (expecting a higher degree of skill from someone several years older would be more reasonable), but at the same time, being judged to some degree on such things would not have been out of line for a girl of Eris's standing. Rudy finding that “this body learns fast,” especially in regard to languages, is also no surprise, as many studies have shown that the ease with which a person can pick up new languages decreases with age. (This does raise some interesting questions about whether that tendency is biological or in the structure of the mind – since that distinction does matter in this case – but the series does not seem interested in exploring that.) Also unsurprising is the fact that Eris's grandfather is screwing one of the maids; you could look at that trait as running in the family, though that kind of thing also historically happened a lot with nobility.
Roxy shows up again, and is still fending off that creepy prince; I felt that routine seemed like harem slapstick the first time around, and this second incident only strengthens that impression. The business with Rudy's figurine making it to Roxy, and her reaction to it, is amusing, but my favorite part of the episode was the business with Ghislaine giving Eris her “wolf repellent” ring. I got a good laugh out of her explanation for why she knew it was just a superstition and the later follow-up for how it discouraged Rudy from doing something improper. Sounded more like you were trying to justify behaving properly to yourself, Rudy! In fact, he seems to be in that situation more and more often of late.
So what's the deal with the black sphere with the energy rings around it at the end? That was the episode's one genuine surprise, and I am curious to see where it leads.
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