What They Say:
Aiz Wallenstein | Sword Princess
Based off of a light novel of the same name written by Fujino Omori and illustrated by Suzuhito Yasuda, Is It Wrong to Try and Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon? is set in the world of Orario, where adventurers band together and look for treasures in an underground labyrinth known as Dungeon. However, for Bell Cranel, fame and riches are secondary to what he wants to find the most: girls. He soon finds out though, that anything can happen in Dungeon, and winds up being the damsel in distress instead!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Hestia gets a lot of attention for the boob string thing. That’s all fine and well, but it should never distract one from realizing a very important thing about Hestia: she’s actually a legitimately great character. Following Lili’s redemption from the previous episode, Hestia lays out all the harsh truths that Bell could never even conceive, telling Lili exactly the things she needs to hear in regard to how she’s behaved both on the antagonistic side and in her recent change in role, things that Bell is really at fault for if we’re being real, and it’s all rather magnificent. For all of Bell’s poor choices and naïve optimism, Hestia is the voice of reason and realism needed to balance it out and make it feel like more than just a plot written to cater to Bell’s whims. That’s a bit ironic for a number of reasons, including the fact that Hestia is both a mythical figure and often a comedy relief character, but mostly because this is really all in service of Bell’s harem, as Hestia reminds us as soon as he returns. Even the execution of this is so well-done that it takes Lili joining in to remind me that this is the purpose, and that it’s ultimately quite stale.
But as much as that might have been the highlight, it’s not the focus of the episode, which instead brings Bell’s one real crush, Aiz, to center stage, after several episodes establishing a running gag of her saving the day but never getting the attention she deserves despite being Bell’s choice in women. She takes on the role of Bell’s trainer, and in the process reveals some more of her quirks as well as showcasing her ability anew. Gags like Bell being repeatedly beaten and passing out may vary in effectiveness depending on a given viewer’s patience for repetition, but overall it’s a fair use of the technique. Again, this is a harem show and Aiz is the newest member to get any real focus, so with Bell’s thoughts of her so different than his thoughts of the rest, he experiences an internal battle between passion and morals, represented by the souls of people who would point him in one direction or the other. While the harem angle is hardly fresh in most ways, I do enjoy the running gag of each girl’s initiation into the harem including Hestia spotting her with Bell during some kind of humorously-dressed job, and Aiz is no exception.
Along with all this comedy and training, there are hints of bigger, more serious plot points to be delved into later, both at the very beginning of the episode and at the end. It wouldn’t be quite right for the series to get too far away from its lighthearted roots, but it’s shown itself to be capable enough of handling more substantial material that I have some faith in its balance.
Aiz is a real member of the cast, and that mostly means training montages. That’s fine and all, but the real meat actually comes from an earlier scene between two girls with little relevance for the remainder of the episode, and that has enough strong writing to make up for any lulls in the rest.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll
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