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Made in Abyss – 13 (END)

「挑む者たち」 (Idomumono-tachi)
“The Challengers”

Who else had been waiting for the Made in Abyss finale all week? With it being a double-length special, I’m sure the expectation was that it was going to be huge, and sure enough it didn’t disappoint—as if we ever had cause to doubt Made in Abyss. Still, it’s a rather unusual finale, in that it’s not really one. Instead, it’s backstory, the heartbreaking tale of Nanachi and Mitty, how they got where they are in the shape they are in. It’s not really the finale’s place to open up a new plotline like this, but it deserves telling nonetheless and while clearly not the final chapter, makes for a good place to leave our bookmark.

Needless to say, the backstory of Nanachi and Mitty is not a happy one, which I’m sure we all knew from the outset. It’s not just that we’re already privy to their final fate. It’s also that we’ve seen this pattern before. We know not to trust people in black helmets. We know that orphans being herded away en masse can be for nothing good. And we know that experimenting on children in anime always ends horrifically. And so when the Pied Piper of Hamelin came to whisk away the children in bulk, we knew that it wasn’t going to be for a picnic. And perhaps Nanchi should have known too? If she had been reading about the Abyss, shouldn’t she have read the part about the Curse? And should have known that children descending to the fifth stratum is, at best, a one-way trip? But of course, she missed the implications, and her ignorance makes the betrayal hit all the harder.

Again, we are asked to contrast the White Whistles with other perhaps more naive explorers (which is, again, not our usual finale fare but let’s do it anyway). The children make a great juxtaposition. They, like Riko and Reg, have an unblemished vision. They, or at least what we saw of Nanachi and Mitty, have a curiosity about the Abyss. They’re in it for the pure joy of discovery. Bondrewd (Morikawa Toshiyuki) has a curiosity too, but it is far more sinister. The Lyza narration keeps reminding us of the longing for the Abyss, but while the children have that innocent spirit of adventure, for the White Whistles it seems an obsession approaching madness. Ozen, while relatively benign, is a bitter and cynical woman. Bondrewd is a murderous amoral scientist. It’s their heroics that are supposed to inspire new generations to take up cave raiding, but their reality falls far short. So I wonder if Orth’s image of the Abyss may be set to betray them, too; they attach a certain divinity to it, but it may turn out to be more devil than god.

All this sounds quite dark, but it makes Nanachi’s decision to join Riko and Reg on their journey all the more triumphant. By all rights, her ordeal at the hands of Bondrewd should have crushed what spirit she had, and indeed she is a death-seeker in part even now. But for now, she resolves to live on. Putting down Mitty became something more than a release from her duties; it allowed Nanachi to move on. Here, we can turn back to the tradition of Greek tragedy, and the link between death and catharsis. Death is not just a release from pain for the one who dies, but a release of emotions for the ones who live on. Nanachi’s parting with Mitty was such a powerful moment not just because it was objectively sad, but because of the emotional release it allowed. Until Mitty actually dies, Nanachi could not properly mourn. And once she is, Nanachi can finally cry for the friend she had lost long ago—and maybe we as the audience can do some of that, too.

This is what makes this episode a great finale, because even if the plot is not resolved it does the other thing finales do—give emotional closure. Catharsis completes the tragedy, and while Nanachi and Mitty’s story was only about half-an-hour of all of Made in Abyss, its completeness drops a worthy curtain on the entire series.

Final Impressions ~ A videogame adaptation done right

Damn, Made in Abyss was good. Perhaps that shouldn’t be too surprising considering we had Monster director Kojima Masayuki heading the project, but on my part I jumped at blogging this show mostly based on a gut feeling (helped along by the beautiful background art), and then crossed my fingers and hoped it would be good. Thankfully, my greatest asset as an anime blogger is the ability to stumble into great shows without much effort, and everything worked out more than well.

As an adaptation, Made in Abyss is an object lesson in what they can add to a story. I talk about adaptations basically every season (and I talk about it a bit with Koe no Katachi, and I talk about it a lot with videogames), but since so much of anime are adaptations, particularly from manga, it bears repeating. Anime has many more tools to work with than a manga—like colour, animation, and sound—and a good adaptation is one that can use these extra tools to enhance the story. And, in a nutshell, that’s what Made in Abyss does. I’m not familiar with the original manga, but I was still constantly aware of the strength of these anime tools displayed at every turn, from the art to the cinematography to the sound design. The sound I will give particular praise to, both for powerful performances by the voice cast that drove the drama in many key scenes, and for Kevin Penkin’s excellent score that supported the show at every turn, from pure ambience to big, vocal set pieces that are the highlight of emotional climaxes like the end of episode 08.

Made in Abyss has the distinction, though, of being the adaptation of an adaptation. In the pilot I talked extensively about the parallels between Made in Abyss and old-style dungeon crawlers like Etrian Odyssey, and the connection was no less clear as we went along. Even the soundtrack is uncannily familiar at times; take, for example, The First Layer. As such, I consider Made in Abyss a videogame adaptation as much as anything else, and it does it right. It takes the spirit of these games—the exploration, the unknown, set to the thrill of extreme danger—and turns that into its own thing, stripping away all the ‘gamey’ elementsthat cause so many other videogame adaptations so much trouble. Again, it’s a matter of focusing on the strengths of your medium, and Made in Abyss is able to explore many angles that a traditional dungeon crawler cannot. In Etrian Odyssey, for example, the narrative is very thin by design, and character creation is in the hands of the player, so the game actively encourages the player to fill in the gaps with imagination. Made in Abyss takes the opportunity to engage in character drama, what adventuring into such a dangerous and malevolent place does to people. And while in a game danger is necessarily cushioned by mechanics—if you get injured you can heal, if your party wipes you can reload—Made in Abyss doesn’t have to provide any kind of play experience, and can really put the screws on its characters and explore pain and suffering completely raw.

Despite my praise, Made in Abyss is not without its weaknesses. The comedy, while necessary to break up the tension, never really worked for me. There’s the standard anime gags about bad cooking, which is by now are more charming than funny, if being generous. Other attempts at humour usually involve Riko being in some compromising position or another or some juvenile giggles about biology, which is not exactly high-brow wit. The romantic tension, such as it were, followed much the same lines. I can understand why Made in Abyss does these things, to forcibly mix up the tone of a story always in danger of falling too deeply into darkness, but success is variable. Crudeness aside, it’s still good that they at least make attempts, because the proper balance in tone is important for Made in Abyss. I sometimes see comments talking about how dark Made in Abyss is, or about it being horror, or about its cute designs fooling others into thinking its suitable for kids when it actually isn’t, but I don’t think that Made in Abyss is ever that oppressive. I don’t even think it’s that inappropriate for kids; an older child could certainly watch it with some parental guidance. Children’s fiction is not all unicorn and rainbows, just as adult fiction is not all gloom and gore. Recall that fairy tales were originally very dark, violent and disturbing stories, because children need to confront these themes eventually and fiction is a safe place to do so in. Roald Dahl, if you’ve read his work, was a firm believer in this. Genuinely horrifying things happen to children in his books, but children can handle fiction. The important part is that they persevere despite, and to that end Made in Abyss should be inspirational. It’s why it never actually descends into horror, because it is ultimately empowering. Our protagonists are met with terrible and painful obstacles time and time again, and each time they overcome. They are beaten, they experience loss and hurt, but they get back up again. That’s teachable, I think.

We can certainly stand to have more like Made in Abyss, especially since we’ve only now caught up with the ED with Nanachi joining the party. I’m optimistic that eventually we will once the manga gets along and it perhaps needs promoting again. The ending we have is certainly a second season hook, and while it bodes badly for our protagonists, I’m looking forward to it. Much in the spirit of Made in Abyss.

Full-length images: 13.

September 30, 2017 at 8:47 am
92 comments »
  • September 30, 2017 at 8:49 amJohn

    You forgot (final) @ title

    • September 30, 2017 at 8:54 amPasserby

      Fixed!

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:20 amTor

    I haven’t’ on commented this site for several years, but I have to for this anime. I put this anime off because of the silly looking kids, until maybe episode 8. Man, I wish I didn’t because I binged this show in one sitting after that.

    It is one of the best animes I seen in the last decade or more.

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:32 amewok40k

    sum of my comments so far:

    Another analogy between Yoda and nanachi popped to my head: horrendous cooking.

    Other than that to sum up my marathoning posts:
    good Lord, Abyss reminds me of both the Harry Harrison’s Deathworld Pyrrus AND Pandora from the Avatar
    alien place full of deadly critters, yet at same time miraculously beautiful and enchanting
    there is almost like in Pyrrus case there is some indomitable will pushing critters to atatck explorers and drive them away

    And REGarding Reg I think he might be someone sent from the other side of Abyss as sort of.. recon probe? to make contact with humanity?
    That would speculate some tech-advanced civilization down there

    could the civilization be the source of the curse somehow, and driving the deadliness and agression of the critters of Abyss?

    oh well just made it marathoning to this episode and Nanachi looks very much like Yoda to me…
    she is very knowledgable, if somewhat grumpy
    she lives in forgotten place in small hut

    apart from that, she seems to be result of some twisted experiment by some twisted whitewhistle

    ok, this episode gave me sleepless night to the tune of lloped Hanezeve Caradhina…
    I have been thinking and thinking…
    What does Orphanage is not much different of 18th century sending young boys to sea travels with Cook or La Perouse, with huge risk to health and life, but at same time with possibility of true advancement and immortal fame as explorers.
    Hide Spoiler ▲

    But what Mr B. does is on completely different scale – it is right with inhumane experiments done by evil regimes during WW2 in German death camps or Soviet gulags, or Japanese bioweapons facilities in China. He would be on same wavelength with dr Mengele…
    If loss of humanity would be only threat to tier 6, he would be able to travel with impunity, cause he has lost any shreds of it long ago.
    /spoiler>

    • September 30, 2017 at 9:41 pmBamboo Blade Cat

      Another analogy between Yoda and nanachi popped to my head: horrendous cooking.

      hahaha

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:34 amhappy tree friend

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:38 amewok40k

    another thing popped to my mind – it is actually possible many whitwhistles from years past are staying in 6th layer, with the distorting time effects?
    (this of course may include Lyza!)
    suddenly Riko’s journey looks not-so-hopeless
    (though it is still one-way-trip)

    • October 4, 2017 at 4:03 pmBigFire

      Show Spoiler ▼

      • October 5, 2017 at 11:09 pmewok40k

        this looks like some bigger play at work, this makes it 3 with Lyza…

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:39 amTepenga

    I guess I am still naive when it comes to anime. I was holding out hope for a happy ending or a cure for Mitty. I think I cried almost as much as Nanachi did.

    • September 30, 2017 at 11:01 amAngelus

      Despite all the apparent random cruelty of the Abyss, there is still a sense of balance to it. When Mitty lost her humanity and Nanachi retained some of hers(?), the total amount of curse they suffered remained the same. And later on in the manga we see a community obsessed with another form of balance. So perhaps if the Abyss at this stage appears to be worse than our worst nightmare, perhaps, just perhaps, it can also be beyond our wildest dreams.

      • October 4, 2017 at 9:14 amTepenga

        I do truly hope so. I haven’t cried this much over an animated character in a very long time. I think what did it the most for me was the little subtle hints that Mitty may not have lost all of her humanity but was still there trapped inside.
        She only could (possibly) communicate with her single eye yet she became such an emotionally powerful character nonetheless.

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:46 amewok40k

    I didnt read manga yet but it is pretty probable the now-trio of adventurers will have to fight their way past Bonedrewd’s outpost if they continue downwards towards 6th layer
    if we ever get 2nd season, i am all excited about it (if only because Bonedrewd needs proper incinerating)

    • October 4, 2017 at 4:06 pmBigFire

      Show Spoiler ▼

      • October 5, 2017 at 2:58 amewok40k

        that means Riko just needs to become whitewistle herself…

  • September 30, 2017 at 10:10 amAngelus

    … juvenile giggles about biology … Crudeness …

    Have you forgotten to put your cultural relativism goggles on today, Passerby? :)

    • September 30, 2017 at 6:22 pmPasserby

      Between all the cultures of all the world, penis jokes are the one constant.

      • October 1, 2017 at 12:44 pmAngelus

        penis jokes are the one constant

        [citation needed]

        The point is, though, that I really didn’t regard them as smutty jokes. Riko is genuinely fascinated with bodies and the things they do, especially the body of an “aubade” like Reg, the like of which she and most other people have never seen before. In a way, she is having her own little journey of discovery with Reg’s body as she makes her big journey into the Abyss.

      • October 1, 2017 at 7:01 pmPasserby

        Hmm, I can never actually tell if you have a sense of humour. Still, comedy is the most subjective thing, and let me assure you that suppositories and random nudity is as much giggle-humour in Japan as it is anywhere else.

  • September 30, 2017 at 10:27 ambaboulinet

    Best dad incoming for the next season

  • September 30, 2017 at 10:41 amMormegil

    Incredible anime. One of the best, if not the best anime of the year. I’m praying that we get another season eventually.

    When Nananchi asked Reg if he could kill Mitty at the end of the previous episode, I was hoping there was going to be a way around this, but alas…
    The flashback was brutal and cruel. But putting down poor little Mitty was what really broke me. Couldn’t hold back the tears when Nanachi ran back one last time to Mitty, to tell her they’d always be together. Can’t remember the last time an anime even made me cry. Sad, sad moment.

    On the other hand, there’s something beautiful and touching knowing that Mitty brough Riko back. For a while, these two were able to share a bond – two girls trapped and suffering but they were able to reach out to each other and were able to comfort one another. Looking back, despite the gruesome details, the eye-to-eye scene was actually very sweet.

    Anyway, I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget this episode. I’ll never be able to forget little Mitty. And I certainly won’t ever forget the gem that is Made in Abyss.

    BTW, Nanachi best anime character of 2017!

  • September 30, 2017 at 11:31 amOri

    I’ve been watching anime for nearly two decades now. And I have to say Made in Abyss is the most satisfying series I have watched since the first half of Gurren Lagann.

    The art was amazing, and this is really the perfect adaption for the manga. Whatever it changed or added was all for the better, and it really didn’t skip out anything.

    I now impatiently wait for season 2, which I have no doubt will happen sometime in the future given the popularity of this show.

  • September 30, 2017 at 11:37 amWorldwidedepp

    Um..
    http://randomc.net/image/Made%20in%20Abyss/Made%20in%20Abyss%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2081.jpg
    Do the Curse not affect him? Or is he already fallen into it?

    Because he can go up and down in the Abyss as he pleased, without the effect of the Curse? Or did he just took so many Children with him, that
    http://randomc.net/image/Made%20in%20Abyss/Made%20in%20Abyss%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2023.jpg
    this is possible?

    Strange, is it not? Is this mask an Protection from the Curse?

    • September 30, 2017 at 11:47 amWorldwidedepp

      or is this Mask Men….

      (Speculation time)
      Show Spoiler ▼

    • September 30, 2017 at 11:50 amsithstormjedi

      He just camps in the 5th layer. That said, he does possess some artifacts that are pretty overpowered. The elevator is from the fifth to the sixth layer.

      And you should really check out the manga, it does answer your questions.

      • September 30, 2017 at 12:02 pmWorldwidedepp

        Will do if i find the time, but he got on the surface to get these Kids and gone back down to Layer 5, and perhaps he done this many times in the past and even present.. So, perhaps his Body got used to this stuff?…

        I just came up with this as an anime only viewer

      • September 30, 2017 at 12:05 pmWorldwidedepp

        My first thought that come into mind.. He is using some kind of Dive Bell..

      • September 30, 2017 at 12:07 pmsithstormjedi

        White whistles in general are one of the few explorers that regularly come back from the fifth level, but they still get affected. Ozen said the way her hair is combed is to hide the scars of traveling from back and forth of the climb.

    • September 30, 2017 at 12:58 pmanon234

      Show Spoiler ▼

  • September 30, 2017 at 12:02 pmBamboo Blade Cat

    omg, this episode was so sad. :(

    we never got to see Mitty really until this episode, but it was still so heartbreaking :(

  • September 30, 2017 at 12:06 pmPetit

    I’m gonna need a therapist after this ep.
    Does anyone’s know when the ost is coming out? Definitely want to support this series. Thinking about BluRay as well.

    I think I may have missed this, but can someone enlighten me on why Nanachi turned into a rabbit simply because she wasn’t affect as much by the Curse? Is it because the animals they originally tested in (and failed) was a rabbit? And it left behind something spiritually?

    • September 30, 2017 at 12:53 pmanon234

      Show Spoiler ▼

      • September 30, 2017 at 3:47 pmPetit

        Yes but what I’m getting at is… why do they change AT ALL? With no curse affecting them (a few percent at most, since almost all of it is in the other tube), their biology wouldn’t have gotten the environmental stress needed to push the transformation…?

        I also don’t understand why there needs to be someone in the other cylindrical glass cage in order for the other to not get the curse. Doesn’t the machine do the job of transferring the curse to one end no matter what’s in it?

      • September 30, 2017 at 8:50 pmanon234

        Replying to Petit:

        Well, considering the fact she changed, Bondrewd’s understanding of the elevator must be wrong. This is just theorycrafting, since it hasn’t been explained, but what if the effect of the curse wasn’t a true one-way transfer? He does say he was experimenting with children and animals with no positive results. He also mentions that unlike the other children put through the elevator, Mitty cannot die.

        Notice that right when Nanachi starts praying to God to not take Mitty away from her, both girls start their transformations (aka lose their humanity). Keeping in mind what I put in the spoiler and the idea/theory that Bondrewd’s understanding of how the elevator works is wrong, what if each person’s desires were transferred between them as they rose on the elevator (Nanachi’s desire to not have Mitty die and Mitty’s desire for comfort as she suffers)? That could explain how each girl ended up in their respective final forms.

      • October 1, 2017 at 2:06 pmPetit

        @anon234

        “He also mentions that unlike the other children put through the elevator, Mitty cannot die.”

        But there are a lot of the other children (and maybe adults) who can’t die either. Hence the amount of Narehate blobs “failures” at the bottom where the elevator lands, living in horrendous conditions without eating. And all of Bondrewd’s red lights that delineates which ones are still alive. Most of them are all still lit.

        Oh well. I guess I’ll just have to wait until season 2 to get more info out of it.

    • September 30, 2017 at 1:32 pmsithstormjedi

      OST is already out on the high seas, as well as on itunes.

      • September 30, 2017 at 3:41 pmPetit

        Are you sure it’s in the US iTunes? I’ve searched for the keywords: Abyss, Made in Abyss, メイドインアビス, and Kevin Penkin with no relevant results.

      • September 30, 2017 at 4:34 pmsithstormjedi

      • September 30, 2017 at 7:44 pmPetit

        Thx.

        Too bad I can’t access and purchase the album without being inside JP territory.

      • September 30, 2017 at 9:51 pmsailor80

        Petit,
        You can get a Japanese itunes acct outside Japan. Just create a new account on the Japanese itunes, and use Japanese Itunes gift cards to pay. You can find those online and get the numbers instantly.

      • October 1, 2017 at 12:24 pmPetit

        @sailor80

        OMG That solves so many problems. THANK YOU.
        I’ve always wanted to support Hikaru Utada as well.
        Gonna search for those Japanese iTunes gift cards right now.

  • September 30, 2017 at 1:18 pmJon Oscar

    What an incredibly raw story. I never felt so uneasy watching an episode in the last few years. Such a kind soul robbed of its humanity. The build up to Mitty’s farewell had me on the edge of my seat. Was Reg really going to do it? What if Mitty survived? Is there really no way around this? Turns out there wasn’t, just like sometimes in real life. I hope I never have to make a tough choice like this.
    At the same time the lighter moments with Riko do a good job of balancing out the whole cruelty and sadness of the setting. Yay for Reg getting a boner. This show is really something else. Fingers crossed for a season 2!

    • September 30, 2017 at 2:00 pmWorldwidedepp

      ..as if you must bid farewell with someone that “lie” in an vigilant coma or some other Brain illness

      If i want to compare it with RL…
      But i would not have the heart to do it

      • September 30, 2017 at 2:02 pmWorldwidedepp

        if i am allowed to trow in an name that come fast into my mind…

        Hawkings, but he found a way to keep communicate with others…

        I stop this line of thinking. my inner mind is crying

  • September 30, 2017 at 2:43 pmScruffy

    It didn’t click with me untill this episode, but Nanachi has probably done this rescue thing many times, and all wih the intent of experimenting on ways of killing Mitty by using adventurers tools she had stolen off them. There was a scene in this episode where Nanachi was in the process of killing an adventurer which brought it all home for me.

    This has truly been an awesome show. Beautiful background art, amazing soundtrack, cool character designs, interesting world building. Loved every minute of it.

    • September 30, 2017 at 6:20 pmPasserby

      I got the impression she performed medical experiments with them, unwittingly carrying on the ghastly work of Bondrewd.

      • October 1, 2017 at 12:35 pmAngelus

        I think Nanachi knew exactly what was going on. But I can’t be judgemental after the trauma of losing and yet not losing Mitti.

  • September 30, 2017 at 2:57 pmAoihoshikage

    The onion ninjas were busy at work in my room through the first half of this episode…

    I think what hit me the hardest was how the decision to end Mitty’s life reflects the reality that we humans face when dealing with relatives/friends/people who have a terminal illness, coma or old age dementia: do we end his or her life earlier to reduce suffering or allow the “natural” end of life even though it’s simply additional suffering? My family faced this issue with my grandmother who passed this year. The last few years of her life were painful: wheelchair bound from hip surgery, severe dementia to the point she didn’t recognize anyone, and tube feeding just to stay “alive”. The months before she passed, our family debated whether or not to put her in hospice care. In the end, pneumonia ended up being the peaceful resolution to what was, fortunately, a fulfilling life of 92 years. The moral debate over euthanasia still rages on, but the final scene with Mitty elicited not only sadness but catharsis from me (curse those onion ninjas!), which weren’t exactly the type of emotions I was expecting coming into this series.

    Sorry for going all philosophical, but I guess this episode hit close to home in a weird way. I really have nothing but praise for this well-crafted series. Yes, I agree with Passerby that there were a few weaknesses like the humor and subtle romance, but to me those weaknesses didn’t detract from the amazing world-building story line, characters, music and art.

    In any case, this Anime is a gem and here’s to hoping for more seasons!

    *Sees that Made in Abyss is licensed by Sentai Filmworks*

    *Adds Made in Abyss to my BD purchase list*

    • September 30, 2017 at 4:43 pmVoyager

      My reply is below

      • September 30, 2017 at 6:13 pmPasserby

        With our current medical technology, we can often keep even critical people alive for an inordinately long time. Almost forever. They will breathe. They will pump blood. But that will be all they do. But we can do that. The difficult question is whether we should.

      • October 1, 2017 at 1:24 ama2222222222

        I wouldn’t say current medical technology can even remotely keep a brain dead body alive basically indefinitely. Bed sores and progressive decay due to lack of movement alone would kill a body within far less than a natural lifetime.

        Maybe with seriously advanced genetic engineering to give people on death’s door anti-freeze properties and slowing their biological metabolism down to room temperature (side effects would be extreme to say the least) would enable basically indefinite medical storage when you can fix them and somehow reverse the genetic engineering without killing them. (That just gets you the body back storing the brain’s state properly is another matter especially after brain death)

        Also you do have to remember if your in a medical coma practically speaking you can’t feel pain/thoughts/anything unlike mitty who’s body regenerates and can process toxins/sedatives easily.

  • September 30, 2017 at 3:45 pmBambi

    Woah it really didn’t disappoint and wrapped it up nicely with enough balance of closure for this arc but leading onto the next.
    Felt so emotional with the floating message scenes too, like the orphanage friends and co. can only live on their daily lives and surrender things to the abyss, but getting a message would definitely be like a lighthouse in the ocean.

    • September 30, 2017 at 6:16 pmPasserby

      Despite all the drama, I often find that Made in Abyss is strongest when it is quiet, like in that scene. Perhaps it’s the soundtrack being strong enough for me to enjoy it taking over once in a while.

  • September 30, 2017 at 4:13 pmOri

    I just noticed something… I’ve always assumed Nanachi is a female, but from her/his flashback, she/he could really be a male after all.

    Mitty had very obvious boobs, but Nanachi looks very flat in comparison.

    This could explain why Nanachi doesn’t like it when Reg snuggles him/her.

    • October 1, 2017 at 2:13 amEnan84

      Nanachi is a male for sure. He can easily connect with Reg getting a boner. Women would have a hard time understanding that. His sarcasm and analytic way of thinking felt also more genuine on a male character for me.

  • September 30, 2017 at 4:37 pmVoyager

    For Nanachi it wasn’t just the desire to put an end to her friend’s suffering. She told it herself, talking with Reg while fishing in the river: Mitty can’t die, and after Nanachi would pass away (easy to happen, in the Abyss), she would suffer -forever-.
    Reg understood. We understood too.

    (p.s.: they made me cry the whole time damn it)

    • September 30, 2017 at 4:39 pmVoyager

      My bad, I meant to reply to Aoihoshikage two comments above.

  • September 30, 2017 at 5:16 pmMaou

    http://randomc.net/image/Made%20in%20Abyss/Made%20in%20Abyss%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2043.jpg

    What a beautiful finale…it really packs full with emotion, after 20 minutes in the edge of the seat then seeing nanachi crying and mumble my treasure…my treasure..it really cut my heart but I also feel some kind of relief that Mitty and nanachi doesn’t need to suffer anymore.

    http://randomc.net/image/Made%20in%20Abyss/Made%20in%20Abyss%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2049.jpg

    A serious contender for best anime and best fantasy anime 2017.

    • October 1, 2017 at 7:49 amMakoto

      Or simply best 2017 anime !

  • September 30, 2017 at 8:36 pmornehx

    Damn! There was so many emotions going on in this last episode.
    From being gutted by the request on Reg.
    Then being angry, sick and revolted at the experiments on the children.
    Then hitting a train wreck on Mitty’s farewell
    Then it was joy again when Riko woke up (albeit she’s actually a bit annoying)
    Then finally to hope when Nanachi resolves to live and join the adventure

  • September 30, 2017 at 9:11 pmvinny

    this deserves the horror tag….

    seriously though, Mitty’s fate it’s one of my top 10 worse fates than death. I’m glad she was able to pass on and very sad for all the others that are still in the same situation. remember all the lightbulbs….

    • September 30, 2017 at 11:56 pmMormegil

      Bondrewd is an absolute monster. That guy certainly lost his humanity a long time ago.
      All the other children that were turned – what will happen to them? They’ll continue to suffer like that for the rest of their lives?

    • October 1, 2017 at 6:58 pmPasserby

      While far from a pleasant end, I would say that Made in Abyss is far too optimistic to be horror. I would recommend trying something like, say, I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream.

  • September 30, 2017 at 10:07 pmPatchy

    OMFG This ep was hard to watch through. The preparation end scenes is nice way to end.

  • September 30, 2017 at 11:48 pmKurik

    Like most everyone here I absolutely loved this show. It was a breath of fresh air and while I try to avoid the too ‘kiddie’ animes I, like Passerby, was drawed to it by the background art and title image. It just looked like a little adventure and boy…what an adventure. I agree with most every Passerby has said about this apart from the weakness in the series being the levity that was injected…I found that worked perfectly and while I am not a fan of the romance shipping…I think it makes perfect sense in the context that its shown. Nanachi and Mitty story was tragic and heartwarming at the same time and made me well up and I rarely do that for anime. These kids are dealing with some very adult decisions and challenges and so far doing a great and believable job of it. One thing that I found surprising though was the post credit with Bondrewd in that he has a monitor on the lives of the ones he has experimented on – does this include the kids in the orphanage perhaps and how is he doing that and to what extent? I am will eagerly patiently (sounds weird but you know what i mean haha) for the next installment whenever that maybe.

    • October 1, 2017 at 6:53 pmPasserby

      It’s a matter of taste, for sure, but I felt that the levity was important, nonetheless, so while it fell flat for me it didn’t bother me too much.

  • October 1, 2017 at 12:41 amRadler

    Holy Frigging Crap.

    I used up an entire roll of tissue watching that damn episode. That black helmet dude needs to die a slow agonizing death. And then get revived and do it all over again for doing it to those kids.

    Mitty’s fate was just too unbearable. I kept thinking something would happen to somehow fix it but I knew deep down she needed to die to be set free.

    Even seeing some of the pics here of what happened to Mitty makes me very very sad. And very very angry.

    Good thing Mitty’s managed to pass on with the help of Reg’s weapon.

    Argh…..sob…sob…

  • October 1, 2017 at 2:21 amEnan84

    Now the trio is complete:

    Knowledge: Nanachi
    Power: Reg
    Courage: Riko

    • October 1, 2017 at 3:50 amAngelus

      Or alternatively,

      The lion: Nanachi
      The tin man: Reg
      The scarecrow: Riko

      • October 1, 2017 at 12:30 pmAngelus

        Thinking about this some more, there are of course Show Spoiler ▼

        . So actually Riko is Dorothy, which makes much more sense, and Show Spoiler ▼

  • October 1, 2017 at 2:22 amMakoto

    I love it when i expect nothing of an anime and turns out to be a masterpiece.

    This last episode was a real treat, showing Nanachi and Mitty’s horrible past and what they went through, Mitty’s relief, Riko’s recovery… a real emotion rollercoaster !

    The real abyss’ curse, is to wait for Season 2 !

  • October 1, 2017 at 3:38 amOnion Warrior

    http://randomc.net/image/Made%20in%20Abyss/Made%20in%20Abyss%20-%2013%20-%20Large%2065.jp
    I have never been hurt so badly by an anime before like i did in this finale. Man, my Nanachi </3 thank u Made in Abyss…season 2 please hurry up!

  • October 1, 2017 at 3:38 amWorldwidedepp

    What i fear about the Season 2 are…

    The pacing

    We needed this Season for them to reach until this Layer they are now, but what want Season2 tell us? How deep is the Abyss? How many Episodes they spend for them to reach the bottom or the peak?

    I hope you get my gist with the pacing of the Season 2.. Sure as manga you have all time you need, but this is hard to convert into Anime (24fps…)

  • October 1, 2017 at 3:47 amJHN

    Pretty much anything else I’d have to say has already been covered. But it’s always nice to have a 2nd season hook at the end.

    That said, at the very last moment when Nanachi looks back at her house. Doesn’t it kinda seem like the house resembles Mitty? The one window is her right eye while the other side look droopy. The door being her mouth with the curtains making the shape and the extension on the left seems very claw-like.

    In other words, Nanachi is looking back at Mitty as well with the house being a literal monument to her.

    • October 1, 2017 at 7:27 pmMormegil

      Yep. The house does look like Mitty.
      Also this on the Anime News Network forums:

      “Mitty’s room is ALSO shaped like her head. I’d like to think that Nanachi designed the house and its rooms to all look like Mitty to try and find the beauty in her new form and memorialize it, you know, try to make Mitty feel appreciated, if she could understand the gesture.”

      ;___;

  • October 1, 2017 at 6:03 amTrunkmonkey

    Mitty’s death was a very powerful moment.

    felt like putting down a long loved pet

    • October 1, 2017 at 6:47 pmPasserby

      Old Yeller with eldritch abominations.

  • October 1, 2017 at 7:01 amShawn

    Does anyone know what Nanachi is doing with the wounded cave raider in the scene where he/she says “I’m sorry for forcing you to stay alive for nothing”? Is he/she trying to save injured raiders, before realizing that he is too badly injured to survive and thus kills him out of mercy? Or is he/she experimenting on mortally wounded raiders in order to find a way to kill Mitty? Also, why are there so many graves near the house?

    • October 1, 2017 at 2:28 pmewok40k

      remember cave raiders are putting hollows like Nanachi to death at sight, so she might have few… unfriendly encounters

      I dont think she has been saving anyone, since word of her would be spreading then, and Bonedrewd could have come looking for her (and Mitty!)

      this particular one might have ended as vicim of some experiment in using some deadly artifact (those nails?) to try and kill Mitty…

  • October 1, 2017 at 8:59 amSkarfang81

    Definitely the best anime watched this season.

    Definitely in the running for best anime watched this year.

    Definitely up there with best anime series ive watched in a long long time…….

  • October 1, 2017 at 11:42 amSecsuey

    animes like this are the reason why I still come to this website looking for gems surrounded of the same bland echi or action trash.

  • October 1, 2017 at 6:22 pmSaburau

    Great anime and great manga, heavily influenced by a game, but still not the adoption of the game.

    • October 1, 2017 at 6:43 pmPasserby

      I have a looser definition of the term than you, perhaps, but I feel that Made in Abyss captures the spirit of the genre better than a mere transliteration or something like, say, Tower of Druaga. It is definitely everything I ask for in an adaptation.

      • October 1, 2017 at 9:39 pmewok40k

        themes present in Abyss are from many different media…
        1.deadly environment, yet amazing beauty – present in for an example Cameron’s Avatar Pandora
        (and in many other fictional deathworlds, complete with probably first literature example, Harry Harrison’s Pyrrus)
        2.artefacts -in this case archeotech- feature heavily in 40k tabletop spinoff Necromunda
        (along with vewrtical stratificatin)
        3.speaking of games – general deadliness and strain on adventurers – Darkest Dungeon anyone?

    • October 2, 2017 at 12:32 amBigFire

      The mangaka used to work in video game industry until he got burned out and went to do Made in Abyss. So you’re not that far off.

  • October 2, 2017 at 8:35 amjhpace1

    • October 3, 2017 at 1:09 amMakoto

      Nanachi did tell that it hurts like crazy when removing these mushrooms, she didn’t lie !

      The depiction of this scene and its crudeness almost gave you a grasp of Riko’s pain here. That’s so rare in anime, probably part of what makes Made in Abyss so special.

    • October 3, 2017 at 8:23 amewok40k

      still 100% better than Reg’s attempt at surgery…
      (if he only had enough control over his laser beam he could probbaly make easily clear cut)

  • October 2, 2017 at 10:36 amiron2000

    Poor Mitty T^T

    Made in Abyss is really another gem of the season.
    Wasn’t going to watch at first but somehow did.
    Kiddy cutesy art but the agony and suffering really hits you.
    Also consistently good art and animation.

    I think the focus is on Riko finding her mom.
    But I hope they explain Reg too.
    Also hope they explain how the Abyss came to be.

    I wonder how is the world like aside from the Abyss.
    Closest we’ve seen is the Caravan Fleet which gave me a Gargantia feel.

    Theres the manga but I’ve yet to spoil myself :P

    Looking forward to another 13 episodes if a season comes along.

  • October 3, 2017 at 8:14 amewok40k

    just blazed thru available manga chapters

    now i can see why they decided to stop here
    spoilers:
    Show Spoiler ▼

    also reddit killed me with dark humor
    https://cdn.discordapp.com/attachments/146559140616077312/364330505153544195/nanachi_plushie.png

  • October 3, 2017 at 1:04 pmyoloalchemist

    What can I say about this anime other than that it’s a very powerful story with art that is incredible, music so moving, mystery that irreversibly hooks, and tension that is hard to handle yet strangely appropriate for this setting.

    Here’s to a second season, because I think this will surely get one some time later. Maybe not as early as next year, but with that kind of ending, it’d be a crime not to continue this story in some fashion.

  • October 8, 2017 at 12:57 pmNamaewoinai

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