Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Episode 4 Review – Quick Summary
In Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Episode 4, “Emergency Family Meeting,” we get three bombshells within the first fifty seconds. First, Zenith is pregnant with her second child! Yea! Second, Lilia apologizes because she is with her first child. Um, is that a yea? And third, Paul is the father in both cases. No, not a yea. Not even close. And boy, did that drop the temperature in their humble abode! Will Zenith murder Paul in his sleep? Will she send Lilia away on a month-long journey to her home after she acts as Zenith’s midwife? Though that might kill Lilia, her unborn child, or both… And what will Rudeus do about this threat to his happy childhood? Or is there anything he can do?
Note: This post may include spoilers, so be cautious.
Favorite Quote from Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Episode 4
Lilia’s short, two sentence pronouncement could have meant the life she’d come to know was now out of reach. Or worse. Capture from the Hulu stream.
In terms of show-stopping power, it’s been awhile since I witnessed a single quote with this kind of impact.
Zenith had just announced that she was with child. To be honest, given how often — and loudly — Zenith and Paul had tried to conceive, it’s amazing it took this long. But the household was in high spirits. Heck, even Rudy looked forward to a little brother or sister!
A little later, Lilia, bowing, said (00:36), “My humble apologies. I am pregnant.”
As a maid who could be dismissed at any time, as a woman whose dismissal would likely mean impoverishment or worse, and as an unwed mother in a society with absolutely zero safety net, that quote carried serious dramatic weight!
Best in Show Moment for Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Episode 4
Paul knew there was only one way he could win an argument with Rudy. It had to do with swords. Capture from the Hulu stream.
Setup: Rudy Dug His Own Grave
I was about to address the gorilla in the room (yes, the mixing is intentional) when I realized that there were more than one. This episode rivals re:ZERO in terms of how much it can pack into 23 minutes. So, to avoid a complex discussion of morality (Paul’s), a less complex but more profound discussion of love’s strength over pain (Zenith’s), of gratitude as a driving force in life (Lilia’s), or even of young love’s terror of an uncertain future (Sylphiette’s), I’m going to focus on something a little more subtle and a little more fun.
Remember in the previous episode when Rudy argued Paul to a standstill — then elicited an apology from his father? Paul remembers.
And remember in this episode when Rudy understood that if Zenith sent Lilia away, the maid would likely die in transit, along with her unborn child? Rudy could see that Zenith felt sick at Paul’s betrayal, and that she would see Lilia and her child as a constant reminder. Yet, at the same time, she loved Lilia. They’d been together for years, and Zenith saw Lilia as part of the family. It was almost as if Zenith needed an excuse to keep Lilia close.
Zenith didn’t want to send Lilia to her death, so she was ready to listen when Rudy gave her an alternative. Capture from the Hulu stream.
Rudy gave Zenith that excuse. I thought he was going to leave off at “Father has a hold over Lilia…” (04:55), maybe because I’ve been through too many anti-sexual harassment training classes. Subordinates cannot give unencumbered consent because a boss’s positional authority gives them the power of retribution. I doubt that this world has the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, so Rudy had to imply that Paul forced himself on Lilia for the statement to have any weight. Zenith relented and welcomed Lilia to stay with them.
Paul remembered how Rudy had manipulated that situation, too.
Delivery: Paul Struck The Only Way He Could
On the Intellectual Field of Battle, Rudy Had the Advantage
It looks like Paul got into a habit of taking his frustrations out on Rudy during sword practice. As if Paul didn’t clearly understand that when it came to logic and rhetoric, his son could demolish him, he got another reminder. Seeing his son glaring at him, Paul asked if he wanted to be cool like his dad.
“Is it cool to cheat on your wife and almost wreck your family?” Rudy asked (11:10). Paul didn’t argue. He couldn’t. In his heart of hearts, he’s an honest man. He owned up to being the father of Lilia’s child, didn’t he? And now, he had to admit that his son had him dead to rights.
Paul knew Rudy was right — but it also reinforced that if Paul wanted to get something across to Rudy, he couldn’t use rhetoric. Capture from the Hulu stream.
So it’s no surprise than when Paul read Roxy’s letter, Paul knew that there was no way he could convince Rudy that Sylphiette was holding him back, and that for his own development, he needed — even if just temporarily — to get away from her. He came up with a plan to ask his friend Ghislaine Dedoldia (who’s interesting on all kinds of levels) to take Rudy away, presumably for training. Paul obviously convinced Zenith and Lilia that the plan was sound, or they never would have gone along. Else, as we saw in this episode, both of them would have vetoed the idea.
But Paul Had the Advantage on the Field of Physical Combat
Rudy was astounded at the sight of Ghislaine. He was equally as mystified as to why Zenith and Lilia were saying goodbye to him. Paul said there was no way Rudy would listen if told to stay away from Sylphiette. “If I tried to explain, you’d just argue your way out.”
So Paul proceeded to pound Rudy with his wooden sword. For a brief moment, Rudy held his own using magic. But as Paul said in previous episodes, magic was no good for close in combat. He succeeded in knocking Rudy out. When Rudy came to, he was in a carriage with Ghislaine.
When Rudy regained consciousness, he saw Ghislaine watching him. There was something about her that inspired instant respect — Rudy wasn’t even lustful within his inner monologue! Capture from the Hulu stream.
It looks like Paul, and likely Zenith and Lilia, too, were concerned that Rudy’s development had stalled. Roxy’s letter made it clear that something had to change. It’s a parent’s duty to encourage their children to develop, isn’t it? Didn’t Paul try to do a good thing here by pushing his little baby bird out of the nest? Whatever else we can say about Paul, he’s trying to be a good father. He knew he couldn’t convince Rudy with logic, and he knew that if Rudy dug in, his magic might carry the day — or seriously damage the property around them. So, Paul did the only thing he could think of.
I’m not sure what the plan is, but I know this: Paul better practice his sword play. Because if Rudy ever masters that and magic, the balance of power in the Greyrat household is going to change!
What did you think of seeing Roxy again? What was your Best in Show moment? Let me know in the comments!
Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation Episode 4: Other Posts
Other Anime Sites
- Reddit: Mushoku Tensei: Isekai Ittara Honki Dasu – Episode 4 discussion
- RABUJOI: Mushoku Tensei: Jobless Reincarnation – 04 – Making It Work
- Random Curiosity: Mushoku Tensei – 04