Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16 Review – Quick Summary
In Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16, “Family Squabble,” Rudy, Eris, and Ruijerd made it to Millishion, capital of a human country. Finally, after a year and a half, they had made it back to human territory! But after declaring a day off, as Rudy lounged in their room at the inn, he witnessed a kidnapping. So, obeying Dead End’s number 1 rule, “Never abandon a child,” Rudy went off in pursuit. However, the leader of the band who had kidnapped the child seemed awfully familiar. Rudy had seen his fighting style before, too. Who was this man? Why had he and his band kidnapped the child? Just what was going on in Millishion?
Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.
Favorite Quote from Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16
I’ll give her this: Eris tried really, really hard. Succeeded, too! Capture from the Hulu stream.
I knew Jobless Reincarnation could get emotional. But holy hell! I watched this episode about a half hour before I planned to go to bed, and now I have no idea how I’m going to fall asleep. It sparked too many memories, it dredged up too many feelings that I thought had died off years ago. And it put its main character, Rudy, through a moment of absolute hell.
In other words, it did what a good drama should do.
Yeah, Rudy could have dialed it back. But even when he was an adult in our world, Rudy was a child. I hold Paul responsible for the confrontation (see below). Paul’s the dad. The dad should not have taken out his sense of guilt and failure on his son. Mostly. But it is what it is. And what it is for Rudy was emotionally shattering.
When Eris found out about it, she was all for murdering Paul. Ruijerd, though, gave her a much more difficult task. Ruijerd told her she should comfort Rudy.
Seeing her try unsuccessfully for so long, striding to and fro trying to come up with an approach, was heart-breakingly beautiful. She finally settled on giving him the world’s most awkward hug.
“I’m sorry, Rudeus,” she said, frustrated at her lack of ability (21:53). “I’m not very good at this sort of thing.”
I don’t think I’ve ever seen her try so hard to do anything.
Best in Show Moment for Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16
“…without a care in the world,” huh? Well, Paul, if finding your wife is more important than pulling rhetorical tricks on your son, why not just ask for help? Why not start planning a search operation? Capture from the Hulu stream.
Setup: Disappointed in Paul… Again
I said I hold Paul responsible for my favorite moment, and after thinking about it for a day, as a dad myself, I think that’s right. And I think it’s beside the point. Jobless Reincarnation has done such a tremendous job building realistic, complex characters. As much as I dislike him, Paul is one of those characters.
Remember how Paul practically beat the crap out of Rudy to knock him out for the trip to train under Ghislaine? Up until that point, Paul had not fared well when he and Rudy argued. Not well at all. It was only with physical force that dad could best his son. As Paul learned in this episode, that one leverage he had over Rudy is gone. Rudy, with his new time-defying eyesight, can now beat his father in a physical fight.
Also, Paul thought Rudy was an adventurer, so he assumed his son knew all about the mana disaster — its scope, the number of people it had taken, all of it. So from his point of view, his son had to look like the most self-centered bastard the world’s ever seen.
Paul went to great lengths to berate Rudy. During that time, I noticed a distinct lack of news or a request for help with the search. Priorities, I guess. Capture from the Hulu stream.
Excepting Paul, of course.
I’m trying to see this from Paul’s perspective. Honestly, I am. But here’s the thing. Paul could have said two sentences as soon as he realized Rudy had returned. Just two. Those two sentences would have made all the difference in the world.
If Paul, who’s supposed to be the freaking adult in this equation, had said those two things, just imagine how differently this episode would have gone. I would have had to choose a different favorite moment, for one thing!
Delivery: A Very, Very Real Moment
Paul Put It All on Rudy
Since Paul didn’t ask, he didn’t know that Rudy had never embraced the idea of being an adventurer. Rudy had done the bare minimum to earn money in his quest to get home. Rudy didn’t know the mana disaster had a general effect. His only view of that event was an approaching wall of flame as he stood in front of Eris. He knew it had taken Ghislaine, but that’s all he knew. Nor had he heard rumor of it in his travels.
So when Paul jumped down Rudy’s throat after the story of Rudy’s adventures, Rudy figured it was just more of Paul’s small-mindedness. To be honest, Rudy could have asked about Zenith, or Lilia, or Aisha, or Sylphiette. He should have. But his pride in his accomplishment, and his assumption they were all safe, blinded him. I can’t blame him too much, though, because here’s the thing: Rudy is not used to feeling proud of himself based on his own exceptional performance.
Why am I analyzing this so much? Simple: That’s how I respond to the reality of these moments. I tease the moment apart to see what I could have done better. I trace its impact back and forth through time to see what I could have changed.
From Rudy’s perspective, Norn calling him a bully had to hurt like hell. It could not have been easy for Norn, either, seeing a kid beat up her dad. Paul could have spared her that, had he been the least bit rational. Capture from the Hulu stream.
That’s why I loved every moment of Paul and Rudy’s confrontation. Right up to when Paul said (19:23), “I was sure you’d have realized and started doing something ages ago. But you were adventuring without a care in the world.”
Rudy’s World Imploded
That statement was so blatantly false and so stunningly true that Rudy had to take a step back. False, because we know Rudy had plenty of cares. True, because Rudy had no idea about the scope of the disaster.
Rudy’s assumptions lay in ruin. His perception of himself had been tattered. And yet, he wasn’t wrong. He was a child who had done the best he could — despite his mental age, which I maintain wasn’t that much older than his current physical age.
That moment was so real that it consumed me. That’s only happened a few times before, like the scene in Made in Abyss where Regu is about to operate on Riko. Except, I had only been in that moment. Jobless Reincarnation went a step further. This time, the moment was in me. It affected me so much I couldn’t get to sleep last night. It resonated with too many memories of my own successful failures and failed successes. And as you can see from how I analyzed the moment, I even reacted to it as if it were a real event.
What must it be like for Rudy? For the first time in his life, he thought he didn’t suck. And his father just tried to convince him that he’s wrong. Capture from the Hulu stream.
That’s the kind of craftsmanship in storytelling that inspires the hell out of me. Moments like that are why I watch anime, or read science fiction. I want to experience these worlds and meet these people, and Jobless Reincarnation just gave me a moment as real as any I’ve encountered in fiction. How could it not be my favorite?
What did you think of Rudy’s disguise when he tried to rescue the hostage? What were your favorite moments? Please feel free to let me know in the comments!
Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16: Other Posts
Other Anime Sites
- Reddit: [Discussion] Mushoku Tensei Episode 16
- 100 Word Anime: Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Part 2 Episode 16 – The Long Awaited Reunion Turns Sour Quickly
- RABUJOI: Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation – 16 – Son, I Am Disappoint
This Site (Crow’s World of Anime!)
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 12: The Woman with Demon Eyes
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 13: Missed Connections
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 14: No Such Thing as a Free Lunch
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 15: Slow Life in Doldia Village
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 16: Family Squabble
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 17: Reunion
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 18: Separate Journeys
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 19: Route Selection
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 20: The Birth of My Little Sister, The Maid
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 21: Turning Point 2
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 22: Dreams and Reality
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 23: Wake Up and Take a Step
- Jobless Reincarnation Episode 24: Eris the Goblin Slayer