「強い相棒と賢い相棒」 (Tsuyoi Aibou to Kashikoi Aibou)
“Strong Partner and Smart Partner!”
And all is well that ends well. Unless you happen to be Grimm of course – warm tootsies in high summer are the worst. Yes, Sentouin mostly did as expected in its final act: Russell was defeated, the kingdom was saved, and Six and Alice are free to start doing as evil organization adventurers do and
build a harem conquer the world. I’d delve into the intricacies of Tigerman going full lolicon (and I mean fully – that knock you hear is the FBI outside), Alice proving she’s an android first and foremost, or the fun of Destroyer and Chunchunmaru cameos, but I say the results speak for themselves. Sentouin did as Sentouin does and I thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Now onto those impressions!
Sentouin is a funny series to look back on in hindsight. While undeniably separate and unique, it’s also a series coloured by the likes of Konosuba and Kemono Michi courtesy of sharing the same author. It’s fun, it works pretty well, but it’s also something I think whose strength relies heavily on what one watched previously. In short, a true and honest comedy with plenty of opinions to go around.
The big selling point of Sentouin in my opinion is its premise. Pairing an isekai setting with satirical evil corporation is simple comedy gold: everything from evil acts to quintessential isekai tropes and over the top characters can feature, mash together, and yield experiences different enough from the norm to be relatively unique. Natsume’s love and skill in parody and character creation arguably helps matters too, as everyone from Six to Snow, Grimm to Alice shows just how wacky and crazy you can make the main players while still keeping things relatively restrained. No matter how simple comedy may seem it in practice it can be stubbornly difficult to get it working right at times. Sentouin is easily one of the examples which keeps the engine going.
Conversely (and paradoxically), however, is how Sentouin stumbles in relation to that same humour. I don’t think it’s too controversial to say for how funny I found Sentouin that Konosuba still has it beat: Six for all his ribaldry has nothing on Kazuma, the Konosuba girls are still in a league of their own, and the Konosuba premise all but writes its own jokes. Admittedly a lot of this comes down to time (Snow, Grimm, and Rose for example only have one season’s worth of development versus two cours and a movie for Aqua, Darkness, and Megumin) and how better grounded this series is – i.e. more real-world focus – but I also think familiarity unfortunately didn’t do Sentouin any favours. Many who come to Sentouin will have seen Konosuba, and plenty will start comparing the two once their connection is discovered; it’s unfair to treat Sentouin with the same light, yet for better or worse that’s what is going to happen. While impossible to say how much better Sentouin would be seen without Konosuba as a reference, one definitely needs to be able to try and separate the two to arguably get the most enjoyment here.
Overall though, regardless of comparisons or other writing spiel, I think Sentouin did everything it had to. Plenty of laughs were had, every week was always looked forward to, and I’m quite happy I chose to pick this one up for coverage. It may not be the next great isekai comedy masterpiece, but Sentouin will certainly meet the needs of anyone out for a bit of lighthearted alternate world humour. And hey, who knows, we might even be fortunate to see a sequel to it in the not-too-distant future.