「このふてぶてしい鈍らに招待を！」 (Kono Futebuteshii Namara ni Shoutai o!)
“An Invitation for this Knucklehead”
“I’m sorry. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry!” -Kazuma.
Comedy comes from expectations, namely the audience’s expectations being subverted or in some way defied. Misdirection is key, and while comedy can certainly work when you know what to expect, it’s all the better when you don’t. That’s why this episode was so great, because while it used beats we’re familiar with—Kazuma and Aqua being horrible, Darkness being a pervert, Megumin and Wiz being cute—it did it in ways I didn’t expect. Repeatedly!
I thought it’d be an onsen episode, but we never got there. I never expected Kazuma and Aqua’s nouveau riche act, and is it just me, or are they maybe actually perfect for each other after all? Given enough money, because they’re both high-maintenance (and terrible) individuals. Vanir frying and then foisting Wiz off on Kazuma was another wrinkle I didn’t expect, whereas the whole rock-paper-scissors bit I totally did expect once it came up, and luxuriated in the glorious comeuppance Aqua recieved. Then, in an episode that I thought featured all Aqua as the star of the show, Darkness came through and stole it in the end, as did Kazuma, with his constant apologizing.
This is one of those posts where I just point things out, because I don’t have much to add. Little touches improved the package, like how they panned to Aqua’s pain or Megumin & Wiz being cute while spouting exposition, or the continually purified tea, or Kazuma’s side commentary—that’s always a winner. But mostly, it was just damn great writing, phenomonal voice acting, and a willingness to take enough time to bask in the small, silly jokes that make KonoSuba so much fun. THIS, my friends, is why KonoSuba is so good, and why I’m so glad it got a second season. For once, a great show that deserved more episodes actually got ’em, and it’s still amazing. There is some justice in the world, even if it’s nowhere to be seen when Aqua needs it. Hah!
- Kazuma was going a little too Cartman there at the beginning. “Mm, your tears are so yummy and sweet! Oh, the tears of unfathomable sadness! My-yummy!” I can’t quiiiite see him doing that to Megumin, but Aqua? Wuh oh.
- Poor Yunyun. Poor Yunyun forever. I just want to give her a big hug, and she’ll never get it. FOREVER ALONE.
- The lip touch is Kazuma’s favorite move, isn’t it? It takes a certain kind of asshol—I mean, ladykiller to pull it off.
- I also loved when Darkness got all serious, saying her muscles aren’t that hard. She wanted Kazuma to know that she’s still soft, ufufu~
My SECOND novel, Freelance Heroics, is available now! (Now in print!) (Also available: Firesign #1 Wage Slave Rebellion.) Sign up for my email list for exclusive content. At stephenwgee.com, the last four posts: The Carcer Principle; Fire, further; Fire; and Starting a story with a bang—and when not to.