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EP. REVIEW: The Promised Neverland Season 2


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Yuvelir



Joined: 06 Jan 2015
Posts: 1212
PostPosted: Thu Feb 18, 2021 5:56 pm Reply with quote
Watching this episode, specially that one scene near the beginning was very very tough.
Norman's plan is genocide, cut and dry, and he wants to use the town to experiment in a way not unlike what he and his went through at Lambda. And meanwhile everyone is all smiles. Sure, their plight would be over but they would be no better than the oni... and supposedly they'd be killing Sojun and Mujika as well.
The implications of the plan struck specially fast and hard having in mind another series airing this season with a similar theme.

Going back to the previous episode, it disappointed me to see normal oni children. I guess Mujika wasn't as special as I anticipated. Also, what's with the taller blonde girl in the Grace Field group? She stuck out like a sore thumb and I didn't remember ever seeing her at all so I assumed she must be from the skipped Goldy Pond arc, but she isn't.
As of last episode I was also seeing how access to high-quality human meat (and brains) made the difference between intelligence&humanity and horrible deformations&ferality (so they're the vore version of Chao Garden, eh?) which is something I've been wondering about all season, and it makes me wonder how the hell are Sonju and Mujika maintaining their highly human, highly skilled and highly intelligent forms if they aren't consuming humans. But I guess we'll find out soon, that was one hell of an ominous title (at first I thought she is the oni they seem to be experimenting on... but that might still be Sonju).
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blahmoomoo



Joined: 27 Jan 2020
Posts: 127
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 11:39 am Reply with quote
I can't help but feel that another strike against episode 6 in particular is that it's airing at the same time as Attack on Titan: The Final Season. Norman and co.'s exposition-explained desire for genocide feels very weak in comparison to everything that's happening in AoT (at least as of episode 66 or 7; I'm following the dub). It would have helped if they took the time to show what Norman went through. It sounds like the manga also didn't do that though.

I'll give it credit that by only hearing what Norman has gone through, it's easier to understand why Emma would think she could talk him down. We are just as detached from what he went through as she is. But it's still boring to sit through his exposition.
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meruru



Joined: 16 Jun 2009
Posts: 430
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:06 pm Reply with quote
One thing that kind of drives me nuts is how Promised Neverland never had any philosophical discussion regarding the demons. spoiler[ I believe Emma even says that this genocide would be killing "innocent" demons in the manga at some point. Except there literally are no innocent demons. Every single one of them (save for Mujika) is a participant in genocide. You could argue demons weren't even really supposed to gain sentience in the first place. It was an accident of their coming into contact with humans. And losing sentience isn't exactly the same as actual death. Of course, from the demon perspective, they wouldn't want to lose sentience once they have it, and returning to their former state is as bad as death, but their victims might not see it that way, with good reason. You'd think the characters would have this argument at some point, but they literally never do.

And all that also leads me to wonder about the circumstances of how humans and demons first came into contact in the first place, and surely there would be demon "extremists" or "cultists" that would argue they should return to non-sentience rather than participate in genocide (or at least before they inevitably regress to non-sentience).]
And all that could have been very interesting. It's this kind of thing I thought a better adaptation of Promised Neverland than the original manga could address, if they were really doing the original anime route, but instead the anime is just cutting stuff, making it have even less world building than before. Maybe the Amazon adaptation will be better.
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ThatMoonGuy



Joined: 13 Oct 2017
Posts: 278
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 12:53 pm Reply with quote
I think a very telling fact about TPN is that, in the manga,spoiler[ they decided to skip the whole infiltration on demon villages arc which lead to the discovery of the seven walls. Later, they keep reffering to 'good demons' that they found along the way, something you'd expect to see in such an infiltration arc but as that arc is never shown you just have to believe in their world.]

It's said that this manga had the first arc very carefully planned but that everything after it was winged. I don't know if that's true but I wouldn't be surprised if it was.
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ab2143



Joined: 09 Jan 2021
Posts: 225
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 1:34 pm Reply with quote
Anyone know the VAs for the Lambda crew?
I only recognise Vincent’s VA (Yoshimasa Hosoya?)
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Covnam



Joined: 31 May 2005
Posts: 2359
PostPosted: Mon Feb 22, 2021 10:54 pm Reply with quote
Along what James is saying, I have to wonder how it would have been if the story ended once the kids escape. I've only seen the anime, but so far that's the clear high point for the series. I'm sure people would have been upset at the time that the rest would have to be left up to the readers imagination, but I wonder if hindsight now would make them change their minds.

I'm glad they brought up Sojun and Mujika so soon as I was thinking about them during that entire plan info dump.
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Hiroki not Takuya



Joined: 17 Apr 2012
Posts: 1738
PostPosted: Wed Feb 24, 2021 12:03 am Reply with quote
Anime Only Guy here! I think Ep6 has a number of very interesting reveals (I don't mean Norman, really I could care less) but chief is the Evil Blooded Girl (has to be Mujika) analogue to the Evil Blooded Temple they are staying in. Given that the statuary depicts human-like Oni and the old Oni's devotion to what seems like an abandoned religion with offerings of fruit and not human meat, it gives the impression that some Oni don't want to be human-eaters or at least are aware of a moral dilemma in doing so. Given the state of his teeth, I doubt the old Oni could have eaten human for a long time, yet he seems "human" enough. Is he Evil Blooded and are he and Mujika anomalies?

And Emma's quandary about extermination of Oni rather than co-existence due to species similarities contrasted with everyone else's glee at the former makes for good dramatic and philosophical tension, even if it's not fully original. I like that there are hints that Norman isn't the sweet guy Emma and Co knew and loved and that his behavior and secretiveness makes him more than a little suss. One of his "friends" seems a step away from being an outright psycho-killer. He's been a "perfect genius" but he claims he wasn't experimented on?

Really, how likely could it be that one guy, no matter how tactically brilliant, could pull off at least two wholesale escapes and keep the bunch safe somewhere for more than a year? "Inside" help? From human or Oni or both? And if the latter, doesn't wanting to exterminate the Oni wholesale present it's own big moral dilemma? And the mention of a Mr Smee and Neverland, can Capt Hook be far behind? Are the kids the Lost Boys? Will Mujika become Princess Tiger Lilly? Is Emma really Peter Pan? Maybe I am going off, but I think things might be getting good...
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Ashen Phoenix



Joined: 21 Jun 2006
Posts: 2728
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2021 1:08 am Reply with quote
As an anime-only fan of TPN, this season has truly thrown me for a loop. It has been exactly nothing I had even theorized it might be and has sadly dragged far too much for far too many episodes.

It feels at times like nothing has happened since the kids' escape from the House. On one hand, they met some Nice Demons and learned Wilderness Skills (with zero tension during that time). Then they spent a hot second at the shelter where all these intriguing threads were revealed... only to never be brought up again. Their newfound home is attacked! But oh, wait--they all escape, no problem, with no losses of any kind.

Now we're onto the most jarring time-skip I've seen in a good while. I had to do a doubletake to make sure I hadn't accidentally skipped an episode in between. But okay, fine. Time-skip. It's happened. How have things progressed and changed in a solid year of somehow evading demon-capture and surviving in the inhospitable dystopian world? Emma and co. now live in a demon temple and Go to Market every day. Are you kidding me? The backstory for the two nameless demons with family meant nothing and went nowhere. I was honestly thrilled when they died because I couldn't stand the ham-handed "demons have families too!" plotline creeping in in favor of the horror survival angle TPN had excelled at in season 1.

Now we're onto Norman, whose return was spoiled for me ages ago thanks to the internet. I didn't have context for how/when/why he'd returned, but having his nightmarish journey explained away as an off-screen montage of awesome was both dull and infuriating. I shouldn't feel that we were cheated out of a much more interesting story. but there's no time to dwell on that either because now Norman is barrelling through a full season's worth of momentum in a few minutes. Minerva's faction is dead! Norman's gained a new group of traumatized, bloodthirsty survivors! There's a demon-killing drug that can annihilate them all and Norman's unleashing it tomorrow. WHAT?! We went from a snail's pace to a break-neck one in nothing flat.

To say the scenery-chewing caricature that is Barbara did not endear herself to me is an understatement. We already knew demons were terrifying, abhorrent creatures who've caused immeasurable harm to humankind. I don't need some ham-fisted newcomer to hammer that home. Emma's starry-eyed optimism which has been the beating heart of her character since day one would've hit differently had the opposition to her idealism not come off so one-dimensionally.

The most compelling part of the latest episode was Norman's reaction to Mujika; the implications that she may be either a corrupt mastermind of sorts worshipped by other demons or an unlikely savior who can be the key to Emma's wish for coexistence. That and the tortured display of Norman's radical "conviction" are just about the only things keeping me on-board which is something I never expected to say when this was by far my most-anticipated continuation of the year.
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Zeino



Joined: 19 May 2017
Posts: 941
PostPosted: Fri Feb 26, 2021 7:28 pm Reply with quote
It really hurts to see The Promised Neverland get neutered so badly like this. Seriously I have fricking clue what the hell Kaiu Shirai is honestly thinking here if just soppily cutting vital storylines and rushing the pacing while still at the same time bringing it to an absolute standstill for exposition dumps is her idea of a improvement to the original manga.

Part of me wants to pin a considerable part of the blame on manga's naysayers for forcing the creators to give into the idea that their work needed to be "fixed" in the first place.
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Raven.In.Pink





PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 2:12 am Reply with quote
Zeino wrote:

Part of me wants to pin a considerable part of the blame on manga's naysayers for forcing the creators to give into the idea that their work needed to be "fixed" in the first place.


I’m not sure how any number of fans could’ve have “forced” the writer into trying to fix TPN with the anime. I don’t think most manga creators listen to fan feedback or criticism unless it was THAT controversial, or at the least I haven’t heard of it happening. And even if they did, they’d be more likely to hear from and listen to the Japanese fanbase.

Heck, even if interest in TPN’s manga did falter over the years, I haven’t heard much backlash about it. Angry fans existed, but not enough to demand a change like this imo. Even among Western fans, there were a lot of people (including me) who greatly enjoyed Goldy Pond, and only started having problems with the manga around the final arc.

Really the things I was hoping to be “fixed” were Ray’s (lack of) character significance and how rushed the ending was. Everything else was just fine.
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Helix91



Joined: 30 Apr 2017
Posts: 29
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 3:07 am Reply with quote
Episode 7 would make more sense if the anime staff felt like they needed to finish the story really quickly for some reason. The big time skip and all the exposition are both ways to cover lots of material in a short time. That wouldn't explain why episodes 3 and 4 were too slow though. It also doesn't make sense that something as popular as TPN would have limited episodes, so I'm at a loss.

Season 2 has been more like reading a plot summary on an anime wiki than actually watching anime.
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ab2143



Joined: 09 Jan 2021
Posts: 225
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 8:40 am Reply with quote
Yeah, the pacing in this season is really bad. I will still finish the season despite the horrendous pacing.

The MuJuice made me laugh a lot.

After having a look on the ANN encyclopedia, turns out Yoshimasa Hosoya isn't the one voicing Vincent. He's actually going to voicespoiler[ Peter Ratri]

The OST and the OP/ED are the only good things about this season
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vashfanatic



Joined: 16 Jun 2005
Posts: 3467
Location: Back stateside
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 2:47 pm Reply with quote
Raven.In.Pink wrote:
Really the things I was hoping to be “fixed” were Ray’s (lack of) character significance and how rushed the ending was. Everything else was just fine.

I'm one volume away from the end, and this is my main feeling too. The story is perfectly fine, but as the cast expanded they lose the balance on the characters and the pacing is sometimes a bit off. But those are things that could easily be "fixed" in an anime adaptation. I suspect what's going on is that the studio had already agreed to a new season, but weren't confident of getting a third after enthusiasm waned, so they decided to just cram it all into one last season. It needed at least two more to really do the story and characters any justice.
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7777ale7777



Joined: 13 Nov 2017
Posts: 75
PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 5:55 pm Reply with quote
I can't help to think that the story could have been far more interesting it they'd removed the Magic-Blood-Ex-Machina that could resolve all the problems that Emma has, and also if the anime (and maga) had tried a little harder to make the viewers sympathize more with the demons, because when Emma says that she doesn't even want the demons to degenerate if they take all the humans away it's like Ripley advocating for the survival of the Aliens (you know, the ones that reproduce by bursting out of people's chests)
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Raven.In.Pink





PostPosted: Sat Feb 27, 2021 9:45 pm Reply with quote
7777ale7777 wrote:
I can't help to think that the story could have been far more interesting it they'd removed the Magic-Blood-Ex-Machina that could resolve all the problems that Emma has, and also if the anime (and maga) had tried a little harder to make the viewers sympathize more with the demons, because when Emma says that she doesn't even want the demons to degenerate if they take all the humans away it's like Ripley advocating for the survival of the Aliens (you know, the ones that reproduce by bursting out of people's chests)


I agree, though they did at least try with spoiler[Ayshe’s adoptive demon father who genuinely loved her.] I genuinely felt bad for the both of them. More things like that would’ve really helped make Emma’s decisions more understandable, rather than simply being the “right” thing to do ethically.
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