Ever since it was announced to be getting an anime adaptation The Promised Neverland has been hailed as being the next big thing for anime in 2019. With the manga now exceeding 100+ chapters and gaining an ever growing fan base the expectations for the anime version are high. With episode one now out in the wild does it meet the expectations? Or has the episode failed to live up to the hype?
Warning: Minor plot spoilers for the first episode are included below. If you would prefer to go in blind, go and watch the episode first.
Set in the year 2045, The Promised Neverland follows lead character Emma, an 11 year old orphan living in an orphanage home known as the Grace Field House. She shares this home with close to 40 other orphans who all look up to their caregiver Isabella who they refer to as “Mom”.
The children still partake in learning and complete exams at the orphanage but besides that they are free to play at their leisure. With one rule, they are not to venture past the fence of the orphanage or leave the gates at any time as they have been told it’s too dangerous.
When one of the other children Conny is selected to be adopted, Emma and Norman, one of the other characters that seem to be one of the male leads in the show follow behind “Mom” as she leads Conny out the gate to return the bunny toy she had left behind at the orphanage. It’s here that Emma and Norman discover the true intentions of the orphanage and the sinister things that lie outside the gates. They don’t quite understand what they just saw but they know they need to get out.
The first episode of The Promised Neverland follows the plot of the first chapter of the manga incredibly faithfully. Doing a great job of introducing us to the core characters, showing that there will be a potentially large cast involved but for now staying focused and really just letting us get to know Emma, Ray and Norman.
The opening two thirds of the episode shows us the living conditions and daily activities conducted by all the kids at Grace Field before hitting with the shock twist last third that will have you on the edge of your seat wanting to know what’s going to happen next. Even those that have read the manga and knew where the plot was going say they were still shocked by the reveal in the episode.
The anime adaptation is being handled by Cloverworks and regardless of your opinion of A-1 pictures you can’t deny that this episode looked fantastic. The animation was great, the use of wide shots showed off the scale of Grace Field and the surrounding grounds well and the character designs are quite varied and have their own look and personality to them and don’t fall into the same basket as looking like most other anime. The designs to me seem quite similar to how The Seven Deadly Sins is presented.
Also, I need to take a second to mention the open the opening and ending themes for the show. They are fantastic. Well animated, great sounding songs and gets you ramped up ready to watch the episode or dive into the next one. Quite often these days I skip through the opening and closings when watching anime unless I find a great one. I’ll be watching through the opening of every episode in The Promised Neverland.
After completing the first episode of The Promised Neverland I agree, I think there’s a very high chance this will become the anime to watch in 2019. It has a large cast of characters, a very interesting premise and surprising plot twists. What more could you want from a new series? If Cloverworks can maintain the quality of this first episode throughout the whole season this will definitely be something special and no doubt has many people running to pick up the manga now.
You can watch The Promised Neverland simlucasting on AnimeLab right here.
If you want to see more content like this and never miss one of our frequent gaming and anime giveaways come and Follow Ani-Game on Twitter.