The Promised Neverland - Reviews

Alt title: Yakusoku no Neverland

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pikachu203's avatar
Mar 30, 2019

This review will be spoiler free, aside from revealing the overall tone of the show.  The Promised Neverland is a compelling thriller that utilizes sound and animation to form an effective tone.  In particular it’s use of sound effects and music serve to build tension and create emotion.

Story(10/10):

While I can’t reveal much of the story’s contents, it remains a tense thriller with incredibly high stakes should the main children fail in their task or be caught.  From the beginning the show always feels off, even before revealing its hand in how it will terrify the viewer.  The world the show builds is mysterious but very well put together.  What is revealed hints at a larger narrative beyond the main children, but leaves much of the world outside of the Gracefield house a lingering mystery.  The ending of the season still leaves the viewer questioning things about the world.  However, unlike certain other shows, the ending remains impactful and feels complete and satisfying in spite of the remaining questions.

For those who desire the continuation of the story, while the show is not due to continue soon, the manga has continued far beyond the end of the first season.  However it isn’t yet finished as of the time of this review.

The story is complimented well by the show’s animation, character art, and sound, which all serve to keep the viewer on the edge of their seat throughout.  

Animation(8.5/10):

Nothing in the show looks particularly bad animation wise, though nothing is spectacular.  Many scenes of characters talking are shot well to convey the tone of the piece, though much consists of characters simply talking.  While the story they’re discussing is compelling and the shot composition is good, it’s not always the most interesting to visually look at.  Two characters standing together and speaking, even if framed welll, doesn’t always add to intrigue.

However, when building tension the show is expert.  It’s use of cgi in a first person perspective is fantastic at making the house feel huge and foreboding. 

The background art and coloring are quite lovely to look at.  The colors are realistic, bright, but not oversaturated, capturing the view of a child well.  When they alter for the sake of a flashback, such as in the last episode, it works quite well.

Overall character designs are effective.  Adults appear huge and menacing without losing their humanity.  Certain creatures are bizarre and terrifying.  The only character design you may have already heard discourse of is that of Sister Krone.  Sister Krone is a black woman who comes to assist Isabella with caring for and watching over the children.  She is a fascinating character but her design - as often happens with black characters in anime - has been the cause of some controversy.  Honestly, while she retains the large lips and hairstyle typical of African stereotypes in the United States, her design is toned down from the manga.  Her personality is still immensely over the top, but she’s a enjoyable character.  Honestly, if you’re particularly sensitive to this sort of design it will probably still distract you.  

Sound(10/10):

The opening and ending themes are both excellent. I enjoy them musically and they fit the tone of the shoe, with the opening being more rebellious and the ending more somber and subdued. 

As hinted at in previous sections to music and sound mixing in this show is absolutely superb and truly makes horrifying scenes more palpably effective.  I do not want to know how they foleyed the sounds of the creatures in this show.  

Further, music overall enhances the experience that the manga provides and makes characters like Iabella more sympathetic in its presence. 

Characters(10/10):

Despite much of the cast being young children, the characters are fascinating and deal with heavy issues.  With much of the show surrounding intelligent children attempting to outmaneuver manipulative adults to achieve their goals, the characters always feel intelligent and compelling.  

While I cannot go into much detail, I can express that they all work well. 

Overall(9/10):

If you enjoy psychological thrillers, I highly recommend you check out The Promised Neverland.  

While the show isn’t always the most interesting visually it is an absolute treat in its storytelling, and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in the genre or curious about the show.

10/10 story
8.5/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
9/10 overall
sweetdesu's avatar
Feb 17, 2019

This anime is a great psychological thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat and leaves your nails a jagged mess from biting them in anxiety. Without giving away important parts of the story, as I feel it's better to go into this anime without knowing much or anything at all, the first episode appears to seem like a normal story about orphans living their lives in an orphanage with no real obstacle in life than lacking parents. However, it very quickly turns into a horrific situation and left me, who is rarely surprised by the stories in anime, incredibly surprised and feeling a sense of, "Oh my God, what the hell is happening?" Each episode, including the first, adds layer upon layer of a mystery that makes you suspicious of everything and everyone, and also makes you want to play along with the mind games. The story becomes progressively more complex with each passing episode without feeling like the writers are trying to cram everything into a single episode to fit the entire story into twelve episodes. The story itself is captivating and I always find myself trying to play the mind games with the characters and trying to solve the games before the characters do, which makes the anime even more enjoyable. The animation is absolutely stunning, as it seems, in certain points, that a "camera" is actually moving with the character. The facial expressions of the characters are also believable and convey the proper emotions of the scene, in most cases. Though every character isn't the most complex, they still add a certain level of depth needed for the story to be interesting and progress through plot points to the eventual end. Honestly, you should just be watching the anime instead of reading my half-baked review. You'll thank me later.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
9/10 characters
10/10 overall
Gozza's avatar
Mar 29, 2019

A show similar to Made in Abyss where a group of young kids slowly become aware of how brutal reality is that they live in. The show does an excellent job in building suspense and it also manages to keep you on your toes, wondering who is really in control of this multilayered chess game.

The animations are amazing and there is always something going on in the background which always makes you second guess if you're focussing on the right thing..

The show does a really great job in creating a very dark and gloomy atmosphere which will keep you feeling like something can happen at any time.

The show does a great job in capturing the emotions of the kids. Going from joy, sadness and anger in the blink of an eye.

Brilliantly executed project and deserves nothing but highest praise.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
MineSimmer's avatar
Apr 9, 2019

Throughout this entire review, you'll most likely just be hearing me praise "The Promised Neverland," highly. I do mostly think it deserves it though. Anyways, "The Promised Neverland," is a show where children are raised together is what seems to be an orphanage by someone called a "mother." You can do whatever except, leave based the gate of the house. When returning a girl's bunny to her at the entrance of the gate, Emma and Norman learn the true horrors of their seemingly perfect life.

Story

Keeping this spoiler free there's not much to say. I believe the show does a fantastic job of keeping you on your feet and trying to guess what's going to happen next. Additionally, to anyone who is initially turned off from this show initially because it's horror, try and give it a shot. Trust me, I'm glad I did and I'm the biggest baby on the planet. I dropped "Another," right after the umbrella scene.

Animation

What I love about the animation is not only the opening and how well rounded the opening is. I love how well the animators show everyone's emotions just through facial expressions. Additionally, because of the lighting the animators create, you're able to read the mood and how intense the scene really stands out based on the shadows and lights and etc. 

Sound

I don't have much to say for this category. I didn't pay too much attention to the music. But the music did get the mood across effectively. Additionally, the voice actors did a great job with everything and I never felt like their tone of voice was out of place based on the scene. The sound is only a 9 because nothing from the sound was that remarkable for me. While it was good, nothing stood out in my face for me.

Characters

Honestly, I think all of the characters are so precious. I'll quickly our three main characters: Emma, Norman, and Ray.

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Emma: She's your more optimistic character who you can't help but love. What I like about Emma is that even though she's intended to be the optimistic characters the show doesn't make her extremely annoying with positivity.

Norman: Has a crush on Emma and honestly, it is really cute. Additionally, I'd say that Norman is the most naturally smart and the best at deductive skills.

Ray: At first glace will remind you of an emo, but has good intentions and isn't emo. He just wants to help out his friends no matter what and he also is very smart.

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The entire cast dynamics work extremely well and the friendship between them makes your heart melt. I do think all of their character developments got interesting as the show went on. Ray remarkably had one of the coolest ones and I like to see how Emma changed since the beginning. What makes it great is that no one character is static because in this show no one would really be static realistic in general. Their entire lives are turned and the show does show us an inside of what some characters think.

In conclusion

I have a lot of questions plot-wise that I really can't discuss for the point of keeping this review spoiler free so what I hope is that they get answered in the second season. What I love most about the show though is how well it manages to keep you engaged. I love the facial reactions from anyone too because it perfectly shows you every single emotion without the characters having to say anything. So even if you're a huge scaredy cat like me, give "The Promised Neverland,"  a try because while it's labeled as "horror," it is entertaining and not too scary. Thanks for reading, I hope this helps anyone who's thinking about watching this show.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
9/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall
Sailnir's avatar
Mar 9, 2019

The world is not what it seams. This story will grant you a glimpse at a wonderful utopia, only to turn it into what a utopia really is, a no place. Each episode of this completely original story will leave you at the edge of your seat feeling a need to see more. The animation is brilliant and shines very well, drawing you into the world. The motion is fluid and well done and the details and expressions are top notch. The sound is perfect. It is juxtaposes with events heightening emotion and lends a deep tone to many parts of the tale. The characters, though not all fully fleshed out, are each fascinating to watch and how they interact is very well portrayed. I would recommend this series not to the feignt of heart but those that want to feel gripped by a fascinating tale that will leave them constantly pondering what will happen next.

10/10 story
10/10 animation
10/10 sound
10/10 characters
10/10 overall