Rudeus has been busy building up his reputation in the North in the hopes that it will lead to a clue about his mother’s whereabouts. However, when two members of Counter Arrow go missing, he slips off to find them.
Mushoku Tensei II: Jobless Reincarnation (Episode 2) – The Forest in the Dead of Night
What did you watch?
This is already feeling like a great way to start the week. The episodes are airing on Sunday my time, which means I can watch them before I fall asleep, which is usually in the early hours of the morning. It is definitely no fun waiting a week between episodes, but since I haven’t made a time machine or ever will do I just have to suck it up. Anyhow, last week we saw Rudeus starting to rediscover his love for life and now we get to see what he does with it. You should expect spoilers beyond here unless you have a time machine, and if you do, we need to talk…
Rudeus has been busy. He’s training his body at every opportunity. He’s taking on quests of varying difficulty and ensuring that he spreads his name and reputation. Unfortunately, he’s acquired a nickname which most people seem to know him by. Still, everyone is on the lookout for Quagmire’s mother. So, when Sara approaches him about joining Counter Arrow for another quest, he’s not sure if he should take it. He wants people to know who he is and not have his persona disappear within another party. Then, Suzanne shows up and convinces him. This time, they are going into an ancient underground fortress to collect scales from Snow Drakes, lesser ice dragons.
While there, they are attacked by a large number of Snow Drakes and then when things are looking bleak, another party arrive. When the fight is done, their leader punches Timothy and accuses them of trying to steal his quest. However, it turns out that the two locations were connected and the Snow Drakes were fleeing from them. Later that evening, they bump into the leader again who tries to apologise, but instead, he turns his attention to Rudeus and begins to attack him for being smug and not giving his all. He can tell that Rudeus is trying to make everyone else happy at his own expense. The next day, Rudeus was waiting at the guild when Suzanne, Timothy, and Patrice from Counter Arrow come in. Mimir is dead and they lost Sara.
There’s a blizzard so it’s too dangerous to go look for them, but Rudeus excuses himself and head out. First, he nullifies the blizzard, and then he finds the snow buffalo and exterminates them. There’s a pile of bones nearby in which he finds Mimir’s remains and one of Sara’s earrings. Then, he spots her restrained inside some sort of tree that can attack with ice magic. He frees her and escapes to a cave where he heals her wounds before they head home.
What did you think?
So, Rudeus’ turnaround in the last episode was far from complete. He may have stepped up a little but he was still holding back. Seeing him run around the town trying to make everyone happy did feel out of character for him. I’m not saying he’s a bad person, but that felt superficial so I can understand why Soldat Heckler might have a problem with Rudeus. Again, similar to the observations about Suzanne, I wonder if Soldat isn’t observing Rudeus from his past experiences. It was great to see Rudeus truly awaken as he attacked the Snow Buffalo. That’s the Rudeus I want to see. He should be well on his way to being one of the strongest mages in the world, but instead, he’s clearing snow and healing scrapped knees. Hopefully, this will be the turning point.
What was your favourite moment?
So, this kind of goes without saying, but the moment that Suzanne and the others showed up with Sara, I knew things were going to get interesting. At first, I was a little concerned that they killed her off camera which would have been criminal, but they said they lost her so there was still hope. And that hope emerged in the form of an unshackled Rudeus. He showed us just how strong he is when he defeated the buffalo and rescued Sara without really breaking his stride. I just want him to show people what he is capable of. It may scare some people off, but if he wants to get his name out there’s no better way.
Who was the most impactful character?
We saw a turnaround from Sara too and that’s to be expected really. He did just save her life when everyone else in the party ran. However, I think the person that had the biggest impact in this episode was Soldat Heckler, the leader of Stepped Ladder who attacked Timothy and Rudeus. He can definitely see Rudeus’ potential and can tell that he’s holding back. When people’s lives are at risk giving anything less than all you have can be seen as a slap in the face to those that have died and those desperately trying to save them. Of course, Rudeus is still dealing with something and to someone his age (regardless of his previous life in which he was socially and emotionally stunted), this is huge. Ironically, I think he needs Sara to get over it, but I doubt that will end well for her.
Was there any conflict?
Lots of little moments of conflict were scattered throughout the episode and I’ve spoken about Soldat at length. I can’t help but wonder what the implications will be of Rudeus saving Sara when Suzanne and the others couldn’t. Part of me wonders if Timothy is also holding back similarly to Rudeus. Maybe he never got over what was holding him back and that’s why he’s so meek and agreeable. I think that’s a chance for Rudeus to see a potential outcome for his life if he continues to hold back. He almost needs someone like Soldat to set him free. It’s interesting that Soldat reminds him of his father and Sara reminds him of Eris. I think we’ve still got a long road ahead of us.
What have you learnt?
I remembered seeing Rudeus get over his issues in the last episode and thinking it was a little sudden and too easy. Admittedly, I was also getting tired of whiny and miserable Rudeus so I didn’t push things too hard. So, I was actually glad that he hadn’t completely freed himself and if anything he went too far in a different direction. Rudeus on the Demon Continent wasn’t so humble and agreeable. He would have picked a fight with Soldat. What I’m alluding to here is that stuff like this takes time to get over and this series has been amazing at giving the characters the time to do that. Rudeus hasn’t even gotten over his previous life so you can’t imagine he’d get over losing his first love in an episode. It’s always worth considering how long things take before incorporating them into the story. It’s like a hero getting over a broken bone a scene later.
Other posts in the series
- Season One
- Part 1
- Episode 1 – Jobless Reincarnation
- Episode 2 – Master
- Episode 3 – A Friend
- Episode 4 – Emergency Family Meeting
- Episode 5 – A Young Lady and Violence
- Episode 6 – A Day Off in Roa
- Episode 7 – What Lies Beyond Effort
- Episode 8 – Turning Point 1
- Episode 9 – A Chance Encounter
- Episode 10 – The Value of a Life and the First Job
- Episode 11 – Children and Warriors
- Part 2
- Episode 12 – The Woman with the Demon Eyes
- Episode 13 – Missed Connections
- Episode 14 – No Such Thing As a Free Lunch
- Episode 15 – Slow Life in the Doldia Village
- Episode 16 – Family Squabble
- Episode 17 – Reunion
- Episode 18 – Separate Journeys
- Episode 19 – Route Selection
- Episode 20 – The Birth of My Little Sister, the Maid
- Episode 21 – Turning Point 2
- Episode 22 – Dreams and Reality
- Episode 23 – Wake Up and Take a Step
- Part 1
- Season Two
- Part 1
- Episode 0 – Guardian Fitz
- Episode 1 – The Brokenhearted Mage
- Episode 2 – The Forest in the Dead of Night
- Episode 3 – Abrupt Approach
- Episode 4 – Letter of Invitation
- Episode 5 – Ranoa University of Magic
- Episode 6 – I Don’t Want to Die
- Episode 7 – The Kidnapping and Confinement of Beast Girls
- Episode 8 – The Fiancé of Despair
- Episode 9 – The White Mask
- Episode 10 – These Feelings
- Episode 11 – To You
- Episode 12 – I Want to Tell You
- Part 1