Our boy Momonga is having some leadership troubles.
Overview (Spoilers Below)
Lord Ainz has gathered the floor masters together to discuss their next move, though he isn’t exactly certain how they’re going to proceed. His inner nerd starts to come out as he starts to wonder how far he can really go being their leader. This inner turmoil is heightened when Demiurge reiterates that the goal of Ainz Ooal Gown is to take over the world and that they should become their own nation-state to achieve this. Demiurge insists on the idea and explains to everyone that Carne Village would be an excellent place to start since its already been saved by Momonga.
This takes us to Carne Village, where the people are prospering along with their goblin friends. Protected by Ainz Ooal Gown, their village has flourished, and peace reigns. Nfirea is still pining over Enri, but is lacking the courage to go through with his affection for her.
Soon, Enri and Nfirea are informed that something strange is going on in the forest, so the two of them head out with a goblin search party to investigate. While out in the woods, Nfirea wonders how much he’s willing to do for Enri to win her heart and finds his opportunity to prove himself when they come across a large wolf menacing a wounded goblin child in the woods. They engage with the wolf, and Nfirea uses his potion prowess to great effect. Things end well, but the lost child informs everyone that war is coming and that things are about to change for the worse
To begin with, this episode re-introduces the goblin denizens of Carne Village, who I’m really enjoying. Their shenanigans is a nice blend of endearing and surly. Not to disparage our reptilian friends, but they’re a good bit more enjoyable than the lizard people of last season, who I found to be a bit long-winded at times. That’s not to say that I’m terribly interested in the somewhat hackneyed romance plot going on between Enri and Nfirea, but hey, for the most part, it works.
For quite some time now, there has been a lack of focus on the differences between Lord Ainz, the leader of the Ainz Ooal Gown, and Momonga the office drone stuck in an MMO. It almost seemed like that conflict was just going to be shuffled off to make room for more fantasy politics, so it’s nice to see that aspect of the show return in this episode. A real trouble that the last season had was that Ainz was just too powerful for there to be strong tension in the main story. It remains to be seen just how far this will be taken as things progress, but for now, I found Momonga’s inner turmoil to be quite entertaining.
As things go on, Demiurge is quickly rising to be the major strategic mind in The Tomb of Nazarick, and that’s just fine by me. His constant planning and cunning provide a nice foil to Momonga and his very reasonable, peace-loving attitude. Momonga can’t be a swell dude without hurting anybody forever.
And that yields to a larger conflict that is starting to show itself here, that Momonga isn’t necessarily capable of handling the powerful organization that he’s in charge of. Though he is the titular “Overlord” of Ainz Ooal Gown and all that fly its banner, their expectations of him are starting to overtake his actual capabilities. You might be an insanely powerful undead mage, but that doesn’t mean you’re able to lead a nation to potential world domination.
The focus of this episode on “Peaceful village life” is overdone for my taste. Conflict is the driving engine of a good story, so I would much prefer the going-ons of the eccentric misfits in Ainz Ooal Gown than a bunch of peasants happily getting along. But I think that a decent framework has been laid to build on things for the future.