「共闘！獣人の友と闇夜を駆ける」 (Kyoutou! Juujin no Tomo to Yamiyo o Kakeru)
“Allied! Dashing Through the Darkness With the Beastpeople!”
Oh the sheer elation of watching skeletons do skeleton things – and now with double the fluff! Oh yes, Skeleton Knight continues to prove why simple and stupid (in the good way) beats in depth grimdark a lot of the time, and while it remains true this series wants to dabble in the dark arts, at least it recognizes its strengths. When it comes to doing things, Skeleton Knight sticks to doing what works best.
Considering how the institution of slavery has become Skeleton Knight’s main source of conflict (for good and bad), it’s probably not surprising that the exceptionally adorable Chiyome wound up seeking Arc out for the exact same reason Ariane originally contracted him. Beast-people being chained up and sold? Nothing a white knight skellie cannot solve, especially when accompanied by mascot fluff and pulling the always hilarious masculine bonding moment. It’s obviously contrived and deliberately set up, but I have little issue with it given how well this series plays to the more lighthearted aspects of the arrangement. Keep the less appetizing scenery on the down low, let the happy-go-lucky moments shine, and this becomes a nice weekly isekai romp.
Case in point of how well Skeleton Knight works when emphasizing its less serious parts is the backstory concerning Chiyome. At face value it’s your usual isekai fluff writ large, but Arc’s reactions to it and the absolute lack of care or interest beyond “damn that would awesome to achieve” (instead of the ubiquitous infodumps and sob stories) really helps keep the smile on my face. It’s almost childlike enjoyment on the part of Arc, a guy perfectly content to live in the moment and have absolutely no concern about what might happen. Sure, the guy stays true to his commitments almost to a fault as shown with Ariane, but there’s no denying he knows how to have fun while adhering to them, helping to always keep things amusing in some capacity.
We’ll just have to see how well this continues as next week returns to Skeleton Knight’s more serious aspects, but one way or another you can bet the fantastical fun won’t be abating.
More good than bad for me, personally, but that’s probably due to the general Isekai landscape regarding the subject.
True, the series’ approach is superficial and prone to using the subject as eye-candy, and it’s mostly a way for Arc to pummel enemies with a clear conscience. But in comparison with the many, many, many Isekais that handwave, justify or outright fetishize slavery, a moral as simplistic as “slavery bad, punching slavers good” feels like a breath of fresh air.
This one makes me remeber dealing some rough justice to slavers in Baldurs Gate 2…