Is it time for the villains to talk in Tensura 2?
Or maybe not all villains but at least those not standing with Rimuru. Given Rimuru is pretty okay with overthrowing kingdoms and mass-slaughter there’s little that distinguishes our favourite little ball blue of slime from those who force teleport kids from other worlds and stir up war for gain.
After many episodes where Rimuru and his gang of worshipers (should I call them allies?) sat around discussing prior events and potential plans moving forward, we now have an episode that starts with Rimuru’s forces dividing and heading off to carry out the plans made previously in Tensura. That should be exciting right?
Except that it seems like instead of following on from there we instead are going to cut to all the other characters because we haven’t heard their exposition about their motives and goals and we haven’t quite managed to make Clayman out to be the cackling evil-doer he is so that viewers can feel suitably satisfied when he inevitably gets his comeuppance.
Tensura, we already hated Clayman, move on.
Episode 42 of course corrects that by showing us how Milim ended up under Clayman’s thumb and his treatment of her upon realising she couldn’t fight back. If you ever wanted an audience to hate a character and want a blue slime to more or less dismantle him, have the cute demon girl get first turned into a puppet and then literally kicked while already down. I will say, Tensura isn’t getting any better at subtlety.
While I’d love to discuss the insight we gained into any of these additional characters I’m going to be blunt and point out that other than confirming Milim most definitely isn’t in control of her actions there really wasn’t a useful outcome from this episode. The discovery of another dragon was kind of cool but unless they do something with that it won’t really go anywhere.
So, rather than continuing to write about the episode, lets look at the six episodes Tensura 2 Part 2 has delivered so far in the Summer 2021 season and lets all agree that regardless of what this is building up to this has not been good storytelling or particularly entertaining. None of the characters have gotten to be shown in their best light, nothing exciting has happened and the pacing of the narrative has literally slowed to an absolute crawl.
Sure, set-up is important.
Jumping straight into the conflict with Clayman without setting up some basics for their overall plan would have been foolhardy, but does any story need to plod along like this, holding the audience’s hand and repeating things over and over, and not leaving any details for later discovery? I’d say not and watching Tensura this season is more or less explaining why they really shouldn’t.
I thought last week the exposition dump was at last over and that this week Tensura was finally going to act on all this planning. Instead they pull a bait and switch and leave us with more planning and talking but from different characters. It is almost as if they are trolling viewers now and even if it is deliberate it isn’t fun to watch.
If we were to compare this to a long running shounen, this is equivalent of the three episode flash back mid-battle sequence that derails the current plot and pacing (that audiences want to watch) in order to build some sense of understanding about a character who is probably literally about to die as soon as they stop flashing back.
Anyway, enough complaining. I won’t say that I think next week things will start happening because I’ve now been proven wrong again and again. I just kind of hope Tensura manages to do something in this season that makes it worth having stuck it out.
Images from: That Time I Got Reincarnated as a Slime Season 2 Part 2. Dir. Y Kikuchi. 8bit. 2021.
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