I’m going to say something that’s probably unpopular at the moment. Not only that but I’m about to spoil this here post for you guys. I liked this episode of The Promised Neverland. It got a bit too heavy-handed for me towards the end there but the very last scene was sweet. And there were quite a few moments that had me roped in. I’m going to tell you guys all about it but first let’s catch up with Crow.
As much as I hate to admit it, when everyone gets down on an anime I get influenced. And I was getting disheartened with the Promised Neverland after a few rocky episodes and the onslaught of hate on social media. How did you feel Crow?
Before I forget, Crow is in bold and as usual and always, there shall be spoilers!
Hi, Irina! I’ve read the headlines saying that they should just cancel the series or the adaptation skipped the best parts of the manga. I tend to feel a bit discouraged, given how much I’d looked forward to this season. But in the end, when I’m watching the show, I honestly try to see it for what it is.
“Heavy-handed” is right. At the same time, “the last scene was sweet.” That’s a great capsule description of this season.
We started off with a small taste of what it was like at Lambda labs. And like any testing facility, it was horrific. We still don’t know what long-term damage was done.
There are a number of humans that seem to be working alongside the demons. However, up until now, we have seen only the mamas and the ones at their facility. The overall impression is that these humans in question were in it out of pure self-preservation. But that doesn’t seem to be the case for Peter Ratri. He seems to be genuinely thriving and holds no ill will towards the demons at all. What do you make of that Crow?
I’m scratching my head over what he thinks he’s doing. Not only does he have no apparent concerns about working with the demons, but he wanted to control all of the children on all of the farms and “not give them an inch of hope.” I have no idea why. So he’s an enigma, and it bothers me.
Also, how’s he related to James Ratri, the guy who moonlighted as Minerva? Lots of questions for episode 8!
Speaking of mamas, where the heck is Isabella?
I keep expecting to see shots of her, panting and out of breath, arriving at the scene where the kids had been just minutes before. Such a great character to re-introduce and then do nothing with.
So, Crow has been examining the themes of vengeance and forgiveness throughout this entire season. You can certainly see how that plays out for a lot of the characters. Although I would say that the current conflict between Norman and Emma isn’t really about either.
Norman does want to exterminate the demons, and certainly part of it has to do with the atrocities he’s suffered, but I don’t think his driving force is to make them pay. He simply wants to make sure future generations don’t have to suffer as he did. It does look like revenge but it’s not quite the same thing.
Whereas the way I see it, Emma’s motivation is not forgiveness of the Demons. I don’t think she believes that what they did to her brothers and sisters is not that bad and that they are all ok now. To me, it’s more that she doesn’t believe exterminating the entire race is the solution. And she also doesn’t want to take on that guilt. It’s more akin to pity in my head.
What do you think Crow?
The show’s doing a good job of showing two conflicted characters trying to figure their way forward. I agree that Norman is driven to a large extent by a desire to protect his family. But when offered the choice of protecting them using Mujika’s blood or wiping them all out, he chose the latter. Let’s say no one had ever tortured him. Would he have still been so adamant to choose extermination?
Forgiveness lets Emma get past what the demons have done to them and move forward. It’s a one-sided forgiveness; a letting go. It’s not like the demons came to her and said they were really sorry and begged for her forgiveness. Its presentation is that she takes pity on them, so pity is definitely involved.
I kinda feel like I’m back in one of my theology classes!
Emma, Ray and company do manage to find Sonju and Mojika in time. Barely. It was more of the same but I genuinely enjoyed that forest scene. I think these tense action moments work very well in TPN. I enjoyed the CG less.
This said, it was too late.
It was hard to watch Emma’s expression when she’d realized Norman had betrayed her. It was also nice seeing Sonju and Mujika again.
The final act of the episode has Norman going back on his word and essentially destroying the demon village a day early. It’s super on the nose and annoyingly obvious with lots of scenes that are supposed to feel grandiose but felt trite to me. Norman realizing the enormity of his actions and coming to grips with becoming all that he loathes. Meanwhile, the little demon kids mirroring the orphans… Yeah, we get it. Except…well…
For one I do like Norman and even in this weak performance, I find him more fun to watch than a lot of the other characters. But mostly, those last 5 seconds got to me. The lost little kid Norman completely lost and Emma saying that she will not let him go alone this time. I liked it. That bit I found actually emotionally resounding and for me at least, it helped redeem that last act quite a bit. A lot of it was still obnoxious but the episode left me with a generally good impression. And I want to see the next one. How about you crow?
I think you’re being kind when you say “on the nose.” It was brutally heavy handed, up to and including the demon grandchild being named “Emma!” But it shows how much we still care for these characters when an instant of Norman’s genuine terror at not knowing what to do got through all of that. I agree it was a powerful moment, made more potent by Emma’s determination not to let him be alone.
I guess I’m left thinking “what if…” As in, what if the narrative were tighter? What if we had time to learn more about this world? I get Norman’s hatred of demons, but what about humans? Peter Ratri played as much a role in Norman’s fate as any demon. Other humans helped him in Lambda. So, why not try to go after some of the humans, too?
Previous Episode Reviews
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 1: Episode 1
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 2: Episode 2
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 3: Episode 3
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 4: Episode 4
- The Promised Neverland 2 episode 5 – Liar’s Dice
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 5.5 – Compare and Contrast
- The Promised Neverland 2 episode 6 – Risk
- The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 7 – Deep Wounds and Springs Eternal