Meanwhile, back in Isekai Ojisan, it’s more or less more of the same. Three months have flown by since Episode 7, a delay purportedly caused by the pandemic, though that explanation was viewed skeptically by some industry observers. Truthfully this series never had remotely expansive visuals in the first place – it makes up for cheapness with a certain witty visual flair and lots of facepulls – so it’s hard to say if there’s any visual evidence of a production in crisis. I might think so with another show, but this one has looked pretty much like this since the first episode.
For starters we continue the story of Alicia and her two partners, who all basically turn out to be nice kids in way over their heads. This whole incident is probably the coolest Ojisan has looked, a fact Takafumi and Fujimiya both take note of. This particular quest is one the trio have more or less dreamt of since they were childhood friends, and Uncle steps in to help them complete it and gain their magic item (a wand). But when he realizes how little satisfaction that gives them, he wipes their memories and restrains himself further on the next time through the dungeon. Even then he’s about to erase their memories again and give them the experience of completing the quest alone, but Alicia including him as part of the group stays his hand.
Still, Ojisan leaves them behind and heads off to the city to complain the adventurer’s guild about three noobs being sent in to do the work of experienced dungeon raiders. There he discovers that a corrupt prelate is manipulating adventurers for his own ends, and has the guard commander doing his bidding. Also of note here is that Mabel has been hired as a knight of the realm, quite a transition for a NEET, which she’s rather smug about. But she’s still in love with Ojisan, so rather than doing the expected in her current (though not for long, sadly) job – take him out – she uses illusion magic to make the observers thing an ice figure is actually her doing battle with Uncle, and he follows suit.
There are a couple more amusing elements in this next sequence. First Ojisan busts out the “superior modern values trope” (first time I’ve heard that term, though the trope itself is an old chestnut) to berate the clergyman for exploiting the Alicia trio. In the end, though, he has to bring out the big gun – his old 8th-grade teacher Tabuchi-sensei. He promptly browbeats the commander into betraying the prelate with his combination of oratorial bombast and sheer intimidation. No one can keep a straight back when facing down a 90’s junior high school teacher…
All in all this was very much what one has come to expect from Isekai Ojisan, though one might be forgiven for needing a few minutes to remember what that is. This series isn’t brilliant in any individual aspect to be sure, but the cumulative effect is still pretty positive. The otaku humor is very “inside” and leans towards the gamer wing (of which I’m not a member), so I don’t get all of it, but what I do get consistently makes me laugh. I like all the characters and I laugh at most of the jokes – for a comedy you can do a whole lot worse than that for selling points.