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Goblin Slayer – Episode 1 & 2 Review

Viewer Discretion is Definitely Advised

The lowly goblin is most often simple cannon fodder for your low or high fantasy world. In “Goblin Slayer” though, they are little more than a simple nuisance. The first two episodes of “Goblin Slayer” setup an interesting dynamic for goblin-kind. They aren’t particularly hard to kill individually, making your typical experienced adventurer uninterested in killing them, but in greater numbers they are devious. Fortunately for the inhabitants of the world, the titular character Goblin Slayer is willing to step up to the challenge.

The beginning of the show introduces us to the Priestess. She doesn’t have a proper name, and seemingly no one else does. Priestess wants to do good in the world and she joins the guild in order to help protect the world from monsters. She begins as a porcelain ranked adventurer and she teams up with another group that needs a healer. However, this group is basically doomed from the start.

After setting out to slay a nest of goblins in a cave, everything goes wrong for our party. The swordsman and the sage are killed in an ambush, and the third martial artist is savagely violated and abused. Only our hero Priestess avoids the attack and is saved by Goblin Slayer himself. From here we really get into the action. 

The Good Goblins are the Ones that Never Come Out of their Hole

The action in “Goblin Slayer” is actually quite great for a non-feature length anime. It is especially bloody and gruesome to watch which might turn off some fans who are looking for something more lighthearted. Even in the first episode we see some great team-work and collaboration between Goblin Slayer and the Priestess. Using the power of miracles, Priestess blinds the oncoming hobgoblin while Goblin Slayer takes the opportune moment to slay it.

This collaboration makes the show feel like it is more than just power levels. We see characters actually try to fit their abilities with each other. It makes the porcelain, silver, gold, and platinum ranks mentioned in the first episode appear to be based on skill and not a video game like experience level. Another example of the great action is in the second episode. After lighting a small fort filled with goblins on fire with arrows, Priestess protects herself and Goblin Slayer with a magical barrier that also traps the enemies within. It is pretty cool to see the party setup and execute a well thought out plan.

Who is the Goblin Slayer?

The Goblin Slayer is a pretty mysterious character. We know that he is extraordinarily skilled and well regarded as an adventurer. He is a silver level that wants to eradicate the world of goblins. He has renamed himself as Goblin Slayer. But what happened to make him this way?

Fortunately we get more than enough background in episode two. We find out he lives with a childhood friend, who we see more than enough of in this episode. Additionally, we discover that his village was pillaged by goblins. He lost his family and friends to goblins and now he hates them so much he has dedicated his life to their demise. Its rather refreshing how simple his backstory is.

View Discretion is Advised

Its hard to talk about “Goblin Slayer” without discussing not just the violence, but the violent sexual encounters between goblins and humans. This is not the forum to discuss the merits of using this story telling element in an animated show aimed at teenagers and young adults. It is however a warning to those that do not want to see the violent subjugation of women, that this might not be the show for you.

Despite the problems with the overall violent tone of the series, the first two episodes really setup an exciting action adventure series. It will be interesting to see how far we can go with laying waste to goblin-kind.