The Promised Neverland Episode 1 Review

To welcome the fresh new year, a wave of new anime have arrived and we’re here to welcome them.  I was not impressed with last season’s anime that much, but this Winter 2019 looks promising. Since this is the first episode of the series, I will review it with a little bit more detail than usual, so grab a cup of your fave drink and enjoy 🙂

The Promised Neverland or Yakusoku no Neverland is a horror, mystery, shounen type of anime, personally some of my favorite combinations. The anime tells the story of an orphanage, Grace Field House, where a group of kids are raised like family and they have fun, eat and go to sleep. The story attributes focus to 3 of these kids, the oldest of the orphanage at 11 years old, Emma, Norman and Ray, each gifted with a skill. Emma has strong athletic skills and she is very clever, Norman and Rey may not have her stamina, but they both possess very astute intellectual skills. 

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The one oddity about this orphanage that the kids have noticed since they were much younger is the fact that it’s in the middle of nowhere and that they are not allowed to approach the gates that lead to the “outside world”. The kids are also branded with what looks like a serial number on their necks. Despite all of this, in the beginning of the episode, everything is la vie en rose, an expression that means life is bubbly, bright and joyful for the kids, but things soon start to turn very sour when the kids uncover the truth behind this “orphanage”.

The story happens on October 2045, more precisely on the 12th of the month, where that date is circled with a name on it, Conny. A sweet, little girl, much younger than everyone else, and today is apparently her day to leave Grace Field House. Later that night, they all cry and wish her well, and Conny is escorted by the beloved, orphanage superintendent, “mom”. When Emma notices that Conny left her plush bunny, something she never lets go of, Emma and Norman rush to the gates to deliver it to her before she leaves, and that’s where the horror aspect of this anime kicks in. 

Inside a huge truck that was parked inside the gates, the kids wondered if that was the vehicle Conny was escorted to, as they look inside, a look of terror and shock engulfs the kids. Conny’s corpse lies in the truck, all bloody and beaten. The animation intensifies the scene with very intense facial expressions and accompanying music. 

The horrified kids gasp and the noise alerts nearby “people”, the kids hide under the truck and what comes out a nearby door are three horrible monstrosities. Emma and Norman are even more terrified when they realize that these three “men” are not humans, and are actually men-eating monsters. They grab Conny’s corpse and put her in a container saying things like “this high quality meat is reserved for the rich”. Another monster comes out and says that he smells something, he looks under the truck but the kids had already escaped, what had remained however was the plush bunny. When Isabelle, the orphanage mom, notices the plush bunny, a look of terror strikes her face, as she was convinced she had left it on the table back at Grace Field House…

Emma and Norman stay up, crying and unable to sleep, craft a plan to get everyone out of this farm. I’m really looking forward to watching and reviewing this anime. Thank you for reading. 

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