「邂逅」 (Kaikou)
“A Chance Encounter”

Did we seriously think our protagonist was going to be killed off 8 episodes in? I suppose it’s possible if the series was only going to run 12-13 episodes. But since we all knew Mushoku Tensei was a 24-26 episode, two cour affair, well, good news: he didn’t. Although it’s an interesting idea which I believe should be explored at a later date. Man gets hit by a truck, isekai’d to another world, dies in unfortunate circumstances in other world, gets whisked away to yet another world – a double isekai special, so to speak.

The Human God

So the gist of the situation ends up being this. There is a god, the ‘Human God’, who is watching over Rudeus and has now intervened to try and guide him through the trials and tribulations ensuing from the Mana Calamity. Whether his advice is given in good faith – or an ulterior motive – is difficult to discern. But I don’t mind the fact they introduced a complex, mysterious character whose motives are unfathomable at present. And I like how Rudeus appreciates the advice given yet doesn’t necessarily trust him from the get go. For that reason, I look forwards to seeing further interactions between Rudeus and the Human God and hope the series continues doing a fantastic job of portraying their dynamic.

And Rudeus awakening from this dream heralds the beginning of my favourite arc – the Dark Continent Arc – the one which made me fall hopelessly in love with Mushoku Tensei. And unlike Hunter x Hunter, won’t leave us wondering whether it will receive any progress or ever reach a definitive conclusion.

Rudeus and Eris are bailed out by a kind stranger, who turns out to be a green haired demon with a red jewel in his forehead – Rujierd, exactly the kind of demon their loved ones had warned them against ever encountering. The Human God had initially suggested Rudeus trust this man. And as it turns out, this judgement proves to be correct – with Rujierd being nothing but kind, patient and helpful towards these two children. He doesn’t even get mad when Eris behaves rude and frightened towards him – passing it off calmly with an extremely melancholic look on his face. It seems like the dreadful reputation of the Superds is unjustified. What gives?

History of the Superds

Inevitably, we’re given a tour de force on why the Superds are intensely feared and reviled across the world. During the war between humans and demons, the Superds were given magical demonic spears which corrupted their soul – causing them to go on an unstoppable rampage, ruthlessly slaughtering friends and foes alike. I find it exceedingly grim that Ruijerd killed his own son in a fit of blind rage brought on by the Demon Spears. And like Rudeus, I felt extremely sorry for Ruijierd – who must have lived an unbelievably tortured existence over the course of 400 lonely years, mulling over his actions and desiring a redemption that may just be out of reach.

Although Rudeus and his situation cannot compare, I thought it was notable how it struck a sympathetic, resonant chord with Rudeus – as far as seeking out redemption is concerned. He too erred in life, and desires to come back from the dark place he sank to. Obviously, there’s not much a child can do, as far as repairing race relations go. However, assuming Rudeus goes on to achieve unimaginable things and becomes a force to be reckoned with in this new world, it wouldn’t be farfetched to believe he could be capable of exerting influence that could change things on a societal level. Not that Ruijerd knows this. To him, a child wanting a better situation for an adult, there’s nothing they can do and it’s the thought that counts.

Concluding Thoughts

Finally, as luck would have it, the first village Ruijerd takes Rudeus and Eris to is Roxy’s home village. It wasn’t a particularly long stay. However, they find a place of safe refuge, establishing a first point of contact with demon civilization. And are able to receive resources – Eris acquiring a new sword – as well as advice they know they can trust, from people who presumably wouldn’t mislead them due to his association with one of their own kin, since the dialogue implies demons do not trust humans.

Which well, doesn’t surprise me given they had a huge war in the past. Albeit a tad convenient, I don’t think they’ll have the same luck trekking the rest of the continent on their journey to return home. However, they have a devout guardian in the form of Ruijerd to try and guide them through this arduous process. So at the very least, it’s not a completely hopeless endeavor.

Anyway, that’s about everything I wanted to discuss. As always, thanks for reading this post and see you all next week!

20 Comments

  1. I’m not sure I’m OK with Manhattan-sama. For one thing, its animation comes over as very uncanny valley, and for another, this sort of god-like character has been tried many times before without much success. All it did for me was break the immersion.

    And talking about animation, are we into budget-conservation mode now? Some of the walk cycles in the earlier part were pitiful. At least we still have the film grain and gate jitter.

    Oh, and the “Superd”? Clearly that should be “Speared”.

    Angelus
    1. Kinda makes sense when you understand what their spears Are.

      Their Spears are their tails which harden and fall off. So literally he’s carrying around his son’s tail and the naming convention make sense.

      PhilthyPhildo
  2. – Street Fighter T.Hawk was surly an inspiration here for some here. (His Cloths)

    – Me get some Ghibli Princesses Mononoke Vibes with these Village Peoples. Just they do not ride deer

    – Roxy made an Impact on Rudy. in Mononoke the Village Guy is the MC and have an strong Influence on this “War”. You could say, he is some kind of “Master”, too

    Well perhaps this are my old Vibes resonating here. Younger Peeps do not know Ghibli at all

    Worldwidedepp
    1. Surely she’s much too tough for that. I expect everyone who got caught up in it got sent to different random places and Rudeus and Eris only ended up together because he was holding her when it hit.

      Angelus
  3. It’s interesting that Rudeus sees himself as his old otaku self. Even the creepy Human God lampshaded the issue of his mental image.

    I wonder if, in time, his mental image will evolve. Perhaps the day he sees himself as his new self, he’ll have completed his character journey.

    Mistic
  4. Came in to mention this anime is really good. I have not been captivated by such an anime for a very long time. From the opening where u literally cannot skip to the jokes and the plot. Its so good. I really hope to animate this till the end.

    seancorr

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