Random Curiosity

Shin Sekai Yori – 05 »« Shin Sekai Yori – 03

Shin Sekai Yori – 04

Shin Sekai Yori   04   01 Shin Sekai Yori   04   02 Shin Sekai Yori   04   03
Shin Sekai Yori   04   04 Shin Sekai Yori   04   05 Shin Sekai Yori   04   06
Shin Sekai Yori   04   07 Shin Sekai Yori   04   08 Shin Sekai Yori   04   09
Shin Sekai Yori   04   10 Shin Sekai Yori   04   11 Shin Sekai Yori   04   12
Shin Sekai Yori   04   13 Shin Sekai Yori   04   14 Shin Sekai Yori   04   15
Shin Sekai Yori   04   16 Shin Sekai Yori   04   17 Shin Sekai Yori   04   18
Shin Sekai Yori   04   19 Shin Sekai Yori   04   20 Shin Sekai Yori   04   21
Shin Sekai Yori   04   22 Shin Sekai Yori   04   23 Shin Sekai Yori   04   24
Shin Sekai Yori   04   25 Shin Sekai Yori   04   26 Shin Sekai Yori   04   27
Shin Sekai Yori   04   28 Shin Sekai Yori   04   29 Shin Sekai Yori   04   30
Shin Sekai Yori   04   31 Shin Sekai Yori   04   32 Shin Sekai Yori   04   33
Shin Sekai Yori   04   34 Shin Sekai Yori   04   35 Shin Sekai Yori   04   36

「血塗られた歴史」 (Chinurareta Rekishi)
“Bloodstained History”

The first thing I’d say is that episode 4 marks a definitive change of pace from what we’ve seen of the show. Picking up immediately from last week’s cliffhanger of an ending, the cryptic flashbacks – which are probably gone for good and which I’m really going to miss – finally give way for a boatload of exposition on the history of the world that Shin Sekai Yori has been teasing us with. So before I go on, I first ought to state that infodumps aren’t exactly my favorite storytelling device, even in a show like Shin Sekai Yori where it was an eventuality. It’s a credit to the show’s immaculate foreshadowing and teasing in its first 3 episodes that I was hanging on every word uttered by the False Minoshiro, even as I’m left pausing every few minutes to try and make sense of the heavy handed, terminology-laden dialogue. Episode director Naomichi Yamato obviously did his best to make the scene as palatable as possible, expanding on the visually striking flashbacks while giving us the concise answers we craved. Could it have been done better? In my opinion: Certainly, given the incredible cinematography of the first few episodes where we saw how well the showrunners managed to integrate exposition into their storytelling. That display of finesse seemed somewhat lost here. But for what it’s worth, these few episodes had been very well thought out in their structure, making the exposition here not too far displaced. It’s not something many shows can attest to, and they’ve done a pretty bang up job in this regard.

This was half the reason why it works for me, the other half being that, like any kind of meaningful exposition, it grabbed me with the implications and ramifications for the story. The rich exposition here along with the events that followed in the second half gave me plenty to happily digest in this episode.

 

  The Bloodstained History

Most of the points raised diverge little from what has been shown or could’ve been inferred. The bloodstained history of how modern civilization came to an end is one example: Humans awakened to psychokinese some time in 2011, reaching some 0.3% of global population, and their abilities set off a disruptive chain of events that eventually led to the complete collapse of societal order. Destruction was on such a magnitude that human population was reduced to a mere 0.2% of the 7-odd billion today, and the war ended with the victory of PKs.

Nothing much surprising there, but with these confirmations came some intriguing revelations, their ramifications for the story immense. It’s best to start with the 4 factions that took the place of contemporary (ancient) Japan: the PK-ruled slave empires, the PK-less hunter-gatherer tribes, the PK bandits and the scientists. We’ve seen the first in flashbacks before, specifically the Holy Cherry Blossom Empire, and saw how they came to their demise at the end of the dark ages some 570 years later, but it’s surprising to learn of 3 separate groups that I suspect are all still present in the storyline.

 

  The Scientists

Of particularly focus were the scientists, initially observers of the dystopian world. It is implied that they possessed PK and thus understood its volatility in society, which prompted them to later take leadership over the remnants of the PK empires and bring societal stability to the PK populace. By extension, this would also prevent Fiends and Karma Demons from appearing.

This stability is achieved via the prevention of attacks against humans, the truth behind the disquieting and sinister facet of the village. Yes, the children are being conditioned with their education, and yes, through psycho-analysis (conducted in the form of the activites and competition we’ve seen) there’s an enforced removal of children like Manabu who display dissent, all in order to prevent the violence that would cause society to spiral out of control. I suspect the removal of PK-weak individuals like Risa are likely for a similar reason of maintaining this illusion of uniformity.

More intriguing was the reveal of two other methods of control introduced by the scientists: Ethology, where the scientists studied how Bonobo communities vented stress through sexual activities in order to prevent strife, eventually introducing the concept to the PK society. There are clear allusions to the kids by way of how they make mention this sexual intimacy occured even among immature primates, and its likely this point will be brought into stark focus sooner or later. The second was genetic manipulation, with the scientists introducing a trait of personal restraint into the genome as well as a “death feedback” that shuts the body down when PK is used against a human. There’s a disturbing, cryptic reaction to this information from Saki, who recalls a moment where she seemingly attacked an old priest and suffered from the feedback, showing us the first signs that these children aren’t as innocuous as the first few episodes made them out to be.

With these, the anomalies from previous episodes click into place, most prominently the Code of Ethics rules that prevented Juryoku, or PK abilities, to come into contact with each other or to be used on humans. There are notable questions raised by the 430 year gap in the terminal’s records, one of more immediate ones being how religion came to the forefront of the current society. Is it yet another means of control introduced by the scientists? Perhaps more importantly, was this course of action taken by the scientist morally justified in spite of the ethical implications? It’s the classic exploration of the moral grey zone that sits at the heart of dystopian science-fiction stories, and this is likely a point that will get expanded further into the show.

 

  Fiends and Karma Demons

There’s very little we actually learn about them in the episode, asides from attaching their equivalent scientific terms. Fiends are people suffering from the Raman-Klogius Syndrome, also known as “Fox in the Henhouse” syndrome, while Karma Demons are those suffering from Hasimoto-Appelbaum Syndrome, but we get cut off before learning anything conclusive. It’s plenty of food for thought, especially how both are explicitly mentioned to have existed before the fall of contemporary civilization, alluding to a possible relation. “Fox in the Henhouse” has some intriguing connotations as a name; its sinister “hunt and hunted” quality is immediately obvious, with PKs illustrated as the fox and the hens as normal humans.

 

  Rijin and the Queerats

Before we’re given the full story from the false minoshiro, we’re cut off by high priest Rijin (Tomokazu Sugita) who incinerates the interface with his PK. It’s not made clear who he is – be it an enforcer, scientist or religious follower – and how much he knows about the agenda behind his doctrine, but his actions are unmistakable in the intent to suppress the truth the children learned. Rijin immediately takes charge to seal the children’s juryoku (through a similar method of hypnosis as the one from the first episode) and escort them to the Temple of Purity for judgement. His presence here also serves to give us a visual representation of the PK’s destructive potential that the bloodstained history alluded to; when confronted with the aggressive queerats, there is an immense display of force in his fracturing of the earth to create a safe pathway, and the summoning of a calamity to reduce the queerats into a mountain of corpses.

The queerats featured prominently in this episode, but where they were portrayed as slaves before, the ones we see in the episode gives the immediate impression of barbaric and fiercely independent community with little qualms about starting fights. Compared to subservient queerats, these were larger in size and with noticeably different features, from the lack of a brand on their foreheads to the pinkish skin and yellow eyes. Rijin makes an interesting remark that these queerats are foreign to the region, a statement I believe can be taken quite literally to mean these queerats aren’t even native to Japan. (Wild stab here, but they could even be western in origin. I’m half-convinced this one screamed “What the fuck!” when his bow was incinerated.) Another telling statement is where Saki remarked how they appeared human from afar, which I suspect isn’t far from the truth given how Rijin suffered from the feedback after his attacks. Thinking back to the hunter gatherer tribes that was mentioned, the depiction of the queerats with their display of intelligence but crude weaponry are suspiciously similar, and it might not be that far-fetched an idea as to think that somehow or another, normal humans might have evolve – or devolve – into these creatures.

 

It’s a lot to take in even for us, and for the kids no less than an earth-shattering revelation as their lives are deconstructed piece by piece. Their varied reactions were a brilliant touch of character that’s been largely missing in the show; Mamoru is utterly terrified as a 12 year old kid rightly should, Satoru wallows in denial and resignation at their fate, Maria seems completely overwhelmed, and Shun grimly presses on to complete his understanding. The most interesting reaction is again Saki’s, who is heavily disturbed by the connections she’s making between her life and the truth being presented. The cliffhanger of an ending places our group of characters in a perilous situation with the rumored Fuusen-Inu, (literally, balloon dog) or blowdog, and it’ll be interesting to see how the kids continue on from what we’ve seen of them here. (It also didn’t strike me quite so much until now, but the awesome-looking blowdog really brings to attention how wild and distinct the monsters are compared to a traditional fantasy.) The preview suggests that the group might even be splitting up, which is sure to bring a new dynamic to the show.

 

Preview

Shin Sekai Yori   04   Preview 01 Shin Sekai Yori   04   Preview 02 Shin Sekai Yori   04   Preview 03
October 22, 2012 at 12:27 pm
63 comments »
  • October 22, 2012 at 12:54 pmDdadain

    The plot thickens…

    I find myself strangely fascinated with the exposition of this adaptation.

    The setting is woven intricately, giving us a glimpse of this “new world” but leaving enough room for mystery that each episode becomes a joy to watch.

    Oddly reminiscent to some post-apocalyptic (English) books I’ve read, but in any case, this episode was a joy to behold.

    This is why a “theocracy” is doomed from the start.

  • October 22, 2012 at 12:57 pmvane

    GREAT episode so far! I confess I started watching out of curiosity and I was surprised to like this anime so much… I can not wait to see episode 5. Facing many disappointments in this season, this anime had that not so much advertising, is surpassing many other shows.

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:06 pmFullmetal Alchemist

    Silly me for worrying that Shin Sekai Yori wouldn’t be able to maintain the level of quality demonstrated in the first episode.

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:14 pmAnonymous

    With the suspicion that Queerats were actually humans/ descended from humans, along with the ability to propagate ‘artificial’ lifeforms like the living library being attributed to the scientists, it would be reasonable to assume that the mutation of human into Queerats is the work of the scientists since there were still non-pk humans around during the slave age.
    Also, The library deliberately spoke in circles when addressing the topics of fiends but was strikingly articulate when pointing out events of the past and singing the praises of the scientists (programmed that way?). That, implying the work they do is for the good of all, stinks of propaganda. Fiends may very well be the Pk users or scientists themselves, but a revelation that the scientists don’t want uncovered.

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:15 pmBio D

    It’s nice to see a dystopia go the Brave New World route instead of aping 1984.

    • October 23, 2012 at 1:45 amCybersteel

      I kinda like 1984. Psycho-pass would probably fall near 1984 in terms of setting but lacks the bald guy.

      • October 25, 2012 at 11:40 pmLuxor

        If he’s talking about the bonobo sex, then yes, it might possibly go the BNW way.

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:21 pmZannafar

    So we get a 4-6 year time skip in the next episode?

    • October 23, 2012 at 9:08 amAki-Chan

      I wondered that as well. It certainly looks like that , doesn’t it?

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:48 pmteutates

    There’s a disturbing, cryptic reaction to this information from Saki, who recalls a moment where she seemingly attacked an old priest and suffered from the feedback, showing us the first signs that these children aren’t as innocuous as the first few episodes made them out to be.

    well it looks more like that old man attacked himself.
    Maybe its part of the test to see if the death feedback is properly activated might it be necessary.

    • October 22, 2012 at 3:27 pmdefunktbots

      i think its like you say, this represented saki’s realisation (or inkling at least) of the enforced mental conditioning / hypnosis that was framed as a ritual right of passage but used to create the triggers for death feedback in individuals.

      It seems like the suggestion is that in order to maintain a stable society any dangerous mental potential is systematically eradicated from the society. Hence children disappearing (and also Saki’s mothers fear at Saki seeing the cat demon?)

      I like how most of the side stories have been glued together now though!

  • October 22, 2012 at 1:49 pmHao

    Why does the preview keep reminding me of Casshern Sins?

  • October 22, 2012 at 2:02 pmintroverte

    Although I found the first three episodes a bit tedious and lacking, after this fourth episode I actually think this was quite well executed as well. I wasn’t really pulled in by the first few episodes because there was a succession of things that weren’t being explained, but this episode explained all those and more stuff I wasn’t even thinking about. From disappearances to the student’s lessons to the flashbacks from the PK empires, I felt like all these made the infodump very easy to follow.

    I suppose it could have been done better, but I don’t have a clue as how it would be done. This is the first time I’ve encountered an infodump conveyed like this, and using any of the methods I already know of wouldn’t work as well.

  • October 22, 2012 at 2:04 pmjhpace1

    I really dislike the actual physical changes the scientists have made to the human genome. Inducing cardiac arrest and kidney problems when using their powers to kill someone would severely limit all their PK powers. This may keep humans from using their powers at all, and could be the reason conditioning/hypnosis is used so much on the children.

    I’m not sure why “lesser” children are also murdered by the enforcers. Making sure that bullying is not possible, since everyone has the same amount of PK power?

    • October 23, 2012 at 3:54 pmruirui

      how do you know they’re murdered?

      • October 23, 2012 at 4:33 pmHunterWulf

        Good point, personally i think those who break the rules in the settlements have their Cantus/PK power sealed then are exiled into the wilderness and left to fend for themselves.

        What still bothers me is that why their friend from ep1 who had very weak PK powers was taken away if the whole purpose of this settlement and all the precautions, brainwashing and genome modification is to suppress the PK powers of those kids, why take her away if she didn’t break any rules !!!?

  • October 22, 2012 at 2:10 pmqwert

    “it might not be that far-fetched an idea as to think that somehow or another, normal humans might have evolve – or devolve – into these creatures.”

    This is what I’m betting on.

    Think about what they’ve mentioned so far about the odd turn evolution has taken in the relatively short time since humanity fell, how those with PK may have been subconsciously effecting the evolution of other species.

    If from the very beginning the hunter/gatherer non-PK humans were seen as being inferior to the PK humans then perhaps over time those beliefs began to mutate the hunter/gatherers into the queerats.

  • October 22, 2012 at 2:36 pmShrubbery

    I love the way the make use of the opening theme. We haven’t really seen an OP song, but instead it plays in the background while a story is being told. The ending of the theme is perfect for concluding a story, just epic.

    Even though this anime is heavy dialogged, I like how they’re doing it so far. It is true that I had to wind back a couple of times to fully understand everything, but they build every dialog with suspence. It gives me goosebumps, so good.

  • October 22, 2012 at 2:49 pmKF

    In many ways this episode is more horrifying and nauseating than the last three.

    19 raped women with 17 of them killed by boy A and what makes it worse is the soft cries and whimpers of the victims. For some reason the whole thing is pure nightmare fuel. Think about it, using PK for rape? He could be the first of many – already I can imagine ripped limbs and burned bodies use as “entertainment”. What about sexual slavery – I bet that is definitely a common feature in a post-apocalyptic world. Since there have been gene manipulation involved in the naturing of people, it is not too farfetch to imagine the scientist using women as breeding vassals for experimental purposes. Imagine the impregnation process – no way, could all those women be willing. The mere idea sicken my mind.

    I was also bothered with the death of the false minoshiro. To me, there is something really repugnant about destroying libraries of vast information. Savages in the past had destroy books, books that could link the past to the present to the future. They had end the link of those before us, denying us a heritage and understanding. While what the priest did may seemed justified, my stomach squirm at the thought of having all the potential that could have been laid ravaged, burned, utterly wasted. While the rape shudders me, the death of the false minoshiro greatly angered me. It just goes to show how good this show is if it is able to make me feel so many emotions.

    I’m going to watch this to the end. This show has proven its value well for I am greatly entertained.

    TQ

    • October 22, 2012 at 3:08 pmbluth

      Not to discount what you are saying, but I could easily see a women PK user doing the same thing to males. I’m just saying that the whole evil PK user doesn’t really mean only males would become aggressive.

      Overall I think it’s a real credit to the world building done in the first three episodes that info dump like the one that happen in this episode still made me hang on every world. This show to me is the best thing going right now. No other anime right now can compete with the overall feeling that this show provides, it’s interesting, mysterious, beautiful, as well as having characters that feel very distinct.

  • October 22, 2012 at 3:32 pmTez

    Man, all that disposition and we STILL don’t know why there were some many toads around there!

    • October 23, 2012 at 9:11 amAki-Chan

      Satoru….
      I doubt the toads are actually relevant ..

  • October 22, 2012 at 3:49 pml3reezer

    I loved this episode. I was spazzing out at the Bloodstained History revelation scene. Needless to say, I think this novel is superbly well-written and the anime adaptation is additionally superbly well-executed, so much so, that Shin Sekai Yori is my favorite of the current season at this point.
    In contrast to a decent amount of dystopian novels I’ve read, (Brave New World, Fahrenheit 451, etc.) I feel like Shin Sekai Yori similarly addresses these thrilling new era predicaments, but also portrays an essential sense of realism in the cast. In other stories, it feels like everything is being overwhelmed by the worldliness of it all that there’s barely any way to immerse yourself in the actually world and feel the predicaments on a personal level. I do think it has a lot to do with the presented medium a lot though, as anime has many devices to create such an immersive atmosphere as opposed to just text.
    Nonetheless, that one was hell of a compelling scene. It felt like a fusion of a conventional literary suspense thrill and the more modern shonen-esque (akin to One Piece revealing bits and bits of what happened during the Void Century) ordeal.

    • October 22, 2012 at 5:57 pmKaka

      In response to how this anime is well-executed:

      There is an interview with the author on the anime’s official site. One of the questions was why did the author choose to have animation as the media to present this story. The reason given by the author is that anime allows much more freedom to express whatever that needs to be expressed. Also, (this is an interesting statement)if this novel was adapted into, say, a live action movie, the violent scenes or even the creatures would seem off and unrealistic. While, with an anime, you can do all those scenes without getting an awkward feeling.

      Frankly, I am so glad that the author recognizes the benefits of animation without being biased. And thanks to his brilliant insight, we can enjoy his work in a form that can do the story most justice! This episode was difficult to execute due to the heavy amount of info. Nevertheless, the staff was able to pull it off :) Can’t wait for the next episode!

      • October 22, 2012 at 7:58 pml3reezer

        Awesome, thanks for that bit of insight. I wasn’t aware the novelists even had a chance to decide something like, “I’d like this to be an anime if anything.” I had thought it was usually just some company approaching him and offering anime or no deal. Given that, it’s reassuring to know he had some freedom in choice.
        I agree completely with your sentiments. At the level live action actions are right now, there would no be no way for a live action adaptation Shin Sekai Yori to be on par with this anime adaptation, but if it had a Jame Cameron’s Avatar level budget and the creativity of anime direction these days, I would not fail to see it, haha. In brief, I believe all mediums can offer something spectacular, but I’m mainly happy that we’re gifted with this anime series for now.

  • October 22, 2012 at 3:59 pmmac65

    Very good, the complexity of the story is increasing, still a little bumpy.

    I really do like the story, but the bumps I see are the children’s desire to trust anything, real or machine,
    that offers a different view than what they were taught. This really is atypical behaviour for kids that age
    who usually do not immediately place that much trust into things that aren’t recognised as authoritative.
    In other words, they had no point of reference for the genuineness of the false minoshiro’s answers;
    it could have been programmed to say anything.

    I thought the high priest would take them back to their village/school/etc., but yet they are to be taken to a
    place for judgement. How did this priest find them? Why did they agree so easily?

    We know their world’s not right, but we really don’t know if either of their two encounters represent any truth.
    I’m less suspicious of the false minoshiro over the high priest, I have a feeling that neither had the kids best
    intentions at hand – based on the preview, it looks like the Queerats are the unexpected ally.

    But, maybe I’m too picky.

    IMHO, a series like this should make its viewers think and consider. So far, this has done a good job of this.

    • October 22, 2012 at 5:33 pmHunterWulf

      Personally i don’t think the False Minoshiro has any reason to lie or even the capacity to do so (and considering how elusive it was i doubt someone would bother adding false information to it then make it this elusive and extremely hard to find).

      On the other hand the monk has every reason to lie, specially that we already know the Scientists who run the settlements are in cohorts with the monks in the temple (who might be scientists posing as monks to add a touch of mysticism to the coming-of-age ritual which we learned in meant to hypnotize the children and suppress their PK powers), he has very good reasons to lie.

      and of course he won’t take them back to the settlement as they have proven to be a “rouge” bunch just like the other kids that disappeared before, they too were probably sent to the temple for judgment or exiled from the settlements and left to die in the wilds on their own.

      And of course they couldn’t have possibly disagreed, first they probably have been conditioned to obey their elders as part of the brainwashing they go through (that also involved wiping their memories of the coming-of-age ritual .. memories that Saki got a glimpse of in ep4 with the kill-switch test) and even if what they learned broke that conditioning .. the guy created a freaking hurricane and split the earth to create a canyon .. it’s very clear his PK powers are completely unsuppressed .. what kids with half-suppressed PK powers (now fully so) who barely could move a rock around with their PK can do against a guy with monstrous PK powers like his.

    • October 22, 2012 at 8:06 pml3reezer

      I completely sensed from shrivel of skepticism in the kids. I think Satoru even said something nearly identical to your words when accusing the Falso Minoshiro of fabricating the history.
      I think from a story telling intention, we, the audience are suppose to know the False Minoshiro is telling the truth yet still understand why the kids are skeptical given what they’ve known ’til now meeting the False Minoshiro, one of them was even breaking down and crying afterall.

    • October 22, 2012 at 9:58 pmTez

      The reason the children immediately trusted it was because they were not told anything about the past at all. So there was no other information to counter it, I’m sure if an authority figure was there at the time denying it they probably would have went along with that.

  • October 22, 2012 at 4:44 pmHunterWulf

    Excellent episode, but i agree that the heavy info dump and terminology used left me with a headache, yeah they used flashbacks but those where mostly as simplistic as still pictures or recycled from previous ones(like the emperor’s assassination), so it was basically the Minoshiro just standing there dumping info into our ears.

    Personally i think Zetsuen no Tempest ep3 handled exposition very well as “parallel” to everything that was being explained we were also experiencing dynamic action scenes that show us an application of all the info we were told … something i sadly can’t say about the exposition in Shin Sekai Yori ep4, but i’m sure this was just a simple hiccup on their account .. seems things will get X10 times better starting from the next episode.

    Still, this episode did explain a lot of things, first .. Karma Demons and Fiends actually mean something in the real-world and aren’t just story-book fairytale monsters .. the Karma Demons are basically the PK users or people who have the Hasimoto-Appelbaum Syndrome (like our heroes) but the Fiends (which are caused by the Raman-Klogius Syndrome, also known as “Fox in the Henhouse” syndrome) are still a mystery, are the Fiends those Queerats and other monsters that appeared after civilization collapsed, are they humans who mutated/devolved or animals who evolved .. we don’t know yet.

    Second, the segregation that happened to society into PK users and non-PK users and into 4 different factions post civilization collapse is interesting, it seems the Slave Kingdoms just fell apart (which were PK users enslaving non-PK users) the hunters and gatherers are probably still there, as well as the PK bandits .. then the scientists which are the most interesting as we don’t know their goal or whether they themselves are PK users or not or how they are related to the monks in the temple outside the settlements (they seem to run things in the settlements from the shadows).

    And i have to pity the children for the horrors they just learned, they realized how different/special they are from normal humans and how their ancestors (the first PK users) committed untold atrocities (which they too are capable of) and that everything so far in their whole life-time was designed to keep them leashed and under close control and observation like wild animals in captivity so they don’t go berserk and repeat the mass murders of their ancestors, it’s like telling them –> “Son, you are a potent unstoppable psychic killing machine and we are keeping you in-check using brainwashing, hypnosis and a kill-switch” .. now go on .. try living your life as you used to again .. doubt that XD

    All in all, while i still love this series for its imaginative world and amazing atmosphere i think they really mishandled the exposition this episode and could have done it better.

    side-notes:
    -Saki got on my nerves for the first time, she was acting weird all the time and topped that by defending the feral Queerats who clearly wanted to slaughter them and when asked why she thinks they aren’t the enemy she didn’t answer, silly girl, when you defend something at least have a clue why you are defending it XD

    -They did mention at one point before in ep3 that those monsters who evolved suddenly evolved for no clear reason or that some speculate they evolved due to the collective consciousness of humanity (or rather the PK users specifically).

    -The only point that really irks me regarding the info we got is that we still don’t know clearly what’s the relation between the Hasimoto-Appelbaum Syndrome (human PK users) and the Fiends (which are caused by the Raman-Klogius Syndrome) and what are those Fiends in the first place .. that’s exactly what the Minoshiro was going to explain before the monk burned it .. DAMN YOU XD

  • October 22, 2012 at 4:45 pmacolyte

    I guess it’s just me who dislike one specific part about this episode: It feels like the children are making exaggerated expressions on whatever’s said by the library. I feel like they should be more confused, instead of shock + anguish.. Something just felt off..

    • October 22, 2012 at 5:19 pmHunterWulf

      I’ll have to disagree, what they were told isn’t just a bloody dark history .. it’s something that’s very personal and disturbing .. they realized how different/special they are from normal humans and how their ancestors (the first PK users) committed untold atrocities (which they too are capable of) and that everything so far in their ENTIRE life to that point was designed to keep them leashed and under close control and observation like wild animals in captivity so they don’t go berserk and repeat the mass murders of their ancestors, it’s like telling them –> “Son, you are a potent unstoppable psychic killing machine and we are keeping you in-check using brainwashing, hypnosis and a kill-switch”.

      Of course they have to be in shock and anguish .. anyone would (unless they are a psychopath or stone-cold).

      • October 22, 2012 at 5:42 pmDusk252

        Yeah, and something else that I’d like to add is how they’ve been living in an idealized society all along. Not only did they find out they’re potential killing machines, for them, with the education they’ve had, taking a human life isn’t as common as it is for us. In fact, it seems like it’s unheard of. Something they never thought someone would be capable of doing. Thus, that’s and even worse idea for them then it’d be for children from our time. Not to mention they’re even genetically condition to have an aversion to that idea. When you add all that to the realization they’re life up until that point had been filled with lies about their origins and their nature, I wouldn’t have been surprised if they reacted worse than they did. The had the reasons for it.

      • October 22, 2012 at 9:43 pmFuuka

        I was thinking the same thing too, then I watched the new episode of Psycho-Pass and I understood more. Both obviously take different directions on the future, but both have futures where the main characters are controlled from the day they are born.

    • October 23, 2012 at 12:03 amjunglepenguin

      FINALLY. I will miss those flashbacks, but it won’t matter since I’m finally seeing the quality I was expecting.

      • October 23, 2012 at 12:13 amjunglepenguin

        Oops, I had meant to leave that as a post rather than a reply. Silly me. I was planning to agree with what acolyte has said, though not completely. While they had reasonable reactions, the scene felt somewhat awkward, almost forced. I think the issue wasn’t with how the characters reacted but rather how the scene was animated and the voice-overs done. That was what I had issue with.

        I’d have to say that they’d have been pretty shocked and disturbed though. Kids who don’t seem to have any experience of death are suddenly told for the first time that people like the friends standing beside them have killed each other. Little kiddies who are less likely to think things out calmly and rationally, mind you.

  • October 22, 2012 at 5:53 pmAnanas

    I wish I could just read the book.

  • October 22, 2012 at 6:51 pmzen Pudding

    This episode took ten minutes longer to watch because of all the pausing to on my part. Got chills all throughout the episode… and I freaking love the ending song the more I hear it.

  • October 22, 2012 at 7:42 pmfragb85

    So Shin Sekai Yori has finally hit the “S*** GOT REAL” button. I actually liked the exposition dump because it felt it well-built up . The show has always been building up that something is very wrong in the world so when the revelation comes it blows all the creepy vibes into perspective. Its also helped by the kids shocked reactions on how their whole world is a lie.

  • October 22, 2012 at 8:57 pmAnomalous

    Perhaps the flashbacks were not meant to be “finesse”, but more “nitty & gritty”- bleak imagery for a dark past.

    Also, summoning a wind giantess/forming the image of one? Very, very nice.

  • October 22, 2012 at 10:03 pmEmD

    I got two things from this episode:

    1. Their world is really messed up.
    2. An orgy between the 5 of them is all but inevitable at some point.

    • October 22, 2012 at 10:30 pmfragb85

      Apparently Saki and Maria already had sex at some point before this. I kid you not. Both the novel and especially the manga make it more explicit but the anime went the PG route and just implied it.

      • October 22, 2012 at 11:53 pmEmD

        Dude…spoiler without warning. Come on man…

      • October 23, 2012 at 12:58 amfragb85

        Its not a spoiler. It was just cut out.

      • October 23, 2012 at 1:45 amAngelus

        @EmD, it’s heavily implied from the context of the flashback scenes intercut with the bonobos that Saki and Maria’s relationship went beyond what we would count as just friendship. And we also see that the same may apply to Saki’s relationship with her mother too.

        Saki is in shock now, exactly the same sort of shock that a victim of parental sex abuse would experience when they first realise that what is happening to them isn’t normal, and it shows on her face. In just a few minutes, everything she thought she knew about the world, her whole life, her very existence, has crumbled away.

      • October 23, 2012 at 2:32 amfragb85

        @Angelus
        There there wasn’t any romantic context between Maria and Saki when they had sex. It just happened. I believe the point of the scene was to foreshadow that they had some genetic influence from bonobos, a primate society that practices casual sex. Much like how everything they’ve done like the education and sports was meant to foreshadow that it was all indoctrination to make them non-violent.

        Presumably it wasn’t shown because it was too racy for Japanese TV.

      • October 23, 2012 at 5:25 amD-LaN

        fragb85 where did u get the novel? Chinese translation site?? Mind telling me?

      • October 24, 2012 at 6:35 amMi-Mi-Mikuru

        But isn’t the manga just pure fanservice? is it cleary stated in the novel that they had sex? couldn’t it just be hugging and comforting, especially with the mother? otherwise i found that absolutely disturbing.

  • October 23, 2012 at 12:04 amteutates

    what i really find interesting though.

    Is the fact that there powers are “currently ” taken away by the monk. but that , most likely isn’t true.

    I’m guessing thats also part of conditioning / hypnosis. another fail safe.

    (just guessing )

  • October 23, 2012 at 12:37 amc2710

    and thus the plot thickens…

    i won’t give an exposition of what i’ve interpreted from the show thus far since you guys have already done so.

    it is true that this episode raises a few more questions as a few questions were answered. the revelations by the false minoshiro and the juxtaposition of the flashbacks tied the scenes that were shown in 1st 3 episodes and the details were sure blood curddling. i had the same response as some of them while listening to it.

    among all of the flash back scene, there’s one that truly strikes me most – http://randomc.net/image/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori%20-%2004%20-%20Large%2007.jpg with this – http://worldsfamousphotos.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/03/execution_of_a_viet_cong_guerrilla_1968.jpg

    i shuddered at the uncanny resembance. and holy cherry blossom empire inspiredd from holy roman empire? cute….

    still, this’s one show im sticking till the end and no surprise if it goes on the frequent-rewatch list =D

  • October 23, 2012 at 1:44 amCybersteel

    I’m pretty sure the sexual intimacy will be further explored in further episodes hopefully. Underage sex in this brave new world. I see doujins incoming!!!

  • October 23, 2012 at 3:22 amchioneicedyrken

    O.O thanks for the information low-down. :D The false monoshiro gave so much information at such a fast pace, they was alot to take in that I couldnt catch up! your review helped! Thanks!

  • October 23, 2012 at 4:30 amKingofConquerors

    well, that was one hell of a reveal…i found it hard to believe that Humanity was exterminated by PK-users whose amount only reached 0.3 of theirs….it was quite a pain though that the turtle broke down when before answering the most important question….

    i personally believe the queerats used to be humans…perhaps the elders secretly turned all the missing people into queerats to get rid of them for good??

    this anime is awesome….i can see this being a classic….

    i can’t help but imagine how hollywood is gonna remake this…

  • October 23, 2012 at 4:31 amDream~Master

    To be quite honest with you guys, I was actually at the edge of my seat watching this episode. It was really well executed, as it unfolds some lose things that I didn’t really get in the past 3 ep. I just hope it brings out more surprises like this in the future, as i like myself some quality and unique anime.

  • October 23, 2012 at 7:56 amploon

    Wow, this new world is pretty freaking crazy. The scientists sure are going to great lengths to keep the PK’s in check, which is understandable. But still.. the fact that they studied primate sexual relations and applied them to children.. that’s some cold, calculated science stuff right there. At this point, the scientists can’t be considered the “good guys”, even compared to those messed up emperors. I mean.. they still keep slaves (queer rats), and we still don’t know exactly what agenda they have with these PK’s. They just waited for the emperor to be assassinated and made their move at an opportune moment.

    Quick theories/areas of speculation

    Queer rats evolved from humans due to the “human conscious”.. perhaps they used to be the hunter/gatherers? Or they were made by the scientists using human DNA. The Minoshiro also seemed to contain a human soul..

    That monk’s powers reminded me of a karma demon’s.. especially the scythe wielding figure.

    How does that one kid keep hearing wacky rumors that end up being completely true? Blow dog.. false minoshiro.. kids disappearing. Source plz

  • October 23, 2012 at 9:24 amTheBadger

    i have a question is the Shinsekai yori novel translated in english ? because i can’t find any

  • October 23, 2012 at 9:51 amedo

    saki’s reactions when It talked about sex were pretty odd.. and they showed her mother and Maria.. I’m not a novel reader but were they implying something?

    • October 23, 2012 at 11:15 amDango_Warrior

      I haven’t read the novel, but because of the timing of those shots and her reaction, I believe they were implying that Saki practiced the Bonobos’ way of relieving stress with Maria and her mother. They were made that way by the scientists after all.

      • October 23, 2012 at 1:27 pmedo

        Yes I think the same now…
        Also could It mean that Shun and the rest had sex too?I mean sex between our group of protagonists… not only saki and Maria.

      • October 23, 2012 at 2:46 pmHunterWulf

        @edo
        “Also could It mean that Shun and the rest had sex too?I mean sex between our group of protagonists… not only saki and Maria”

        The previews i saw on youtube for the show (before it aired) reveal a bit about this subject, so i suppose the upcoming episodes are going to get to that point soon enough.

        It seems Shinsekai Yori is proving to be every-bit of the Seinen show i expected it to be, conditioned casual sexual behavior among friends and family members to relieve stress and deter violence, you don’t see that everyday XD

    • October 23, 2012 at 5:14 pmSolara

      @EDO At first glance Saki thought of anything with ‘physical contact’ when she heard the topic of ‘sex’. Since it is a physical thing, she thought about her mere close encounters, not exactly in a sexual way, but a physical manner, such as hugs and embraces. Not exactly she had sex with those 2 people or anyone in the group. But since it was just shown quickly in those exact moments, the implications can be anything.

  • October 23, 2012 at 5:05 pmsolarasreign

    No words would suffice the chain of emotions I had while watching it. This anime is too good, I’m literally enjoying every episode as it progresses. Shin Sekai Yori is not just an anime to enjoy, it’s one heck of an experience, at least to me. Looking forward to every week.

  • October 23, 2012 at 10:12 pmshin

    Can anyone clarify what happened with episode one when they sealed Saki’s powers? Did they release that seal afterwards and was it just to set up the conditioning that would allow them to control the seal of those powers?