OP Sequence

OP: 「雪に咲く花」 (Yuki ni Saku Hana) by (花澤香菜) Hanazawa Kana

「愛する早季へ」 (Aisuru Saki e)
“To Saki, My Love”

It only took us some 16 episodes, but Shin Sekai Yori finally got its (semi) OP! This must be some kind of record, yea? Yes, it is a pretty jarring insert, but indulge me for a moment, as I was starting to think I’d never get the chance put up an OP snapshot for the series.

Alright, so putting aside loli Saki and loli Maria loligaggling it up, I loved this episode. Now, I know you’re probably tired of this already. I should know best what it must sound like when I say this practically every week, and I only wish I could put this across more eloquently, but I really do mean my words. It’s been ages since the last time I had so much investment chasing after an episodic series, every week’s episode passing so quickly in a blur of fun that I feel I spend more time anticipating rather than savouring the episode.

When it comes down to it, Shin Sekai Yori really succeeds at its versatility of experience. My favorite part of the show is undoubtedly its manipulation of the fear and tension inherent to its mysteries. But I get so wrapped up in the conspiracies that I easily forget once it pulls back on the shadows, Shin Sekai Yori gets downright poetic in its narrative of a world twisted by human nature, and of a group of characters each struggling in their own way to come to terms with this cruel dystopia they inhabit.

Maria’s letter to Saki is probably the closest the show has come to directly addressing this theme, highlighting the very question we viewers have been asking: ”Can a village that kills its children for peace and order be considered a normal human society?” Maria’s astute proclamation of the village’s twistedness is a notion I’m pretty sure everyone here shares, citing the acceptance of haphazard disposals as results of the adults’ abnormal fear of children. Her judgement of their society was biting, but not one I can disagree with: in spite of the peace and order they enjoy, she doesn’t believe their abnormal society is any better than the violent, chaos-filled dark ages of humanity’s past.

As sound as Maria’s metaphorical reasoning was, the show has gone to great lengths to establish the ambiguity of this question. I’d say that Tomiko’s justifications for the PK society remains as persuasive as they were when we first heard them, that the continued perpetuation of their current society, even if depraved in nature, remains the only means of survival. But this strikes me as the key point, and if Maria’s escape bears fruit (though the way the story is going, I doubt it will) it would completely undermine the conceptual foundations of the current PK society. I don’t think any of us believe there’s going to be a resolute answer to this question by the show’s end; as is the case with most of these stories of this genre it’s more than likely only a losing compromise can be achieved. But it’s definitely one of my most anticipated moments to see what kind of an answer the story will eventually arrive at.

Why do I call Shin Sekai Yori poetic? It is one thing to approach heavy concepts like that of our humanity and society, and completely another to make it as poignant as Shin Sekai Yori did. For all the brainwashing, conditioning, ethical ambiguity and sexual deviation that Shin Sekai Yori brings out, the emotions of the characters remain incredibly relevant, if not central, to the story. Why else spend nearly a quarter of the episode showing us happy fun times of Saki and Maria? Joking aside, it’s easy to forget when pondering these larger-than-life themes that we’re only dealing with young teens here, with all their raw, uninhibited emotions. And if anything, the show does a really good job getting this characterization across with a genuine sincerity, the deep friendship and love shared between the kids being emphasised strongly with the flashbacks to their childhood. When Dovak’s New World Symphony started playing in that last segment, I was chuffed. I don’t think anyone of us really expected Saki to find Maria, but that scene still struck hard as Saki and Satoru metaphorically reached the end of the day, and of their search. Satoru was now the only person left in Saki’s social world that she loved and deeply cared for, and for those feelings to culminate in their night together was one of those powerful, emotional moments in this Shakespearian-esque tragedy. (And just wow, I love those shots of that scene where Saki and Satoru stood alone against the backdrop of the vast world. Just breathtaking, and beautifully poignant.)

How the characters will be developed from here on out is definitely going to be the one thing to watch out for with the next arc’s massive time jump to the characters at age 26. Needless to say, I’m incredibly excited about the prospects that come with the kids’ maturation into adults, and I’m dying to learn what kind of answers they’ll choose when faced with the same questions of morality. (Alright, alright….and yes, they look incredibly hot as adults as well. There, you got that out of me.) This episode dropped plenty of hints on where it might be headed: Saki’s narration of the Queerat’s cunningness seemed to have confirmed my suspicions of Yakomaru’s ambitions, and that the kids were really involved in some larger ploy of the queerats. And I can’t quite make sense of the surreal dream Saki had of bizarre monsters and a long haired boy, likely Shun, who warns Saki not to help Maria and Momoru escape, and that Maria has to die. Simply another foreshadowing of Maria’s doomed fate, or is it hinting at something larger?




  1. We think of the characters as human because they look like we expect them too be. Beneath their exteriors they are monsters wrapped in human form thinking they are still human. Each has the power to distort the world in monstrous fashion or destroy hundreds/thousands with a thought. Maria doesn’t know or grasp the knife edge they’re living on. If there are only 100,000 people left in Japan then the Earth has lost over 7 billion(!) people in 1000 years. Their candle is going to be blown out at any time.

    1. Give me better proof that they did have sex.
      It’s cold outside, so it makes sense to sleep together naked. And she’s sweating due to those nightmare where Shun warned her not to help Maria.

  2. I teared up when Saki and Satoru started making their own fantasy of running away with everyone. Its like their last desperate attempt to remain optimistic on their hopeless search. Its good that Satoru is trying to keep a level head the whole time like he always does when it counts. I guess that makes them the OTP now though the circumstances are pretty depressing, humping like bonobos out of emotional need.

    Its been awhile since I’ve seen a lesbian relationship handled tastefully and tragically. I say tragic because Maria’s foreshadowing of costing lives still hasn’t happened, and its likely going to be very bad and something to do with Squealer.

    And speaking of Squealer, his idea of using fake bones is chilling and proves how clever he can be. He really scares me now, I can’t believe I found him adorable once upon a time.

    1. Squealer was always too creepy for his own good. I kept thinking to myself they are probably one day going to regret letting him live. Didn’t you see the weird questioning glaces he kept giving Saki and how he would stalk them and use them as bait?

  3. I’ve been expecting that Maria would end up turning into a fiend at some point and that would be how she ended up responsible for the deaths of thousands or whatever it was…

    But with the queer rats scheming now I’m wondering if it won’t end up tying in to their plans. Maybe they take refuge with the queer rats and she ends up teaching them how to use cantus or reveals enough for the rats to take advantage of the death triggers and holy barriers to mount an attack against the humans.

  4. I love how we got full scenes of Satoru and Shun showing their tongues in each other’s mouths and of Saki and Maria letting their hands wander but we didn’t even get a single kiss between Saki and Satoru before they got their Bonobo on.

    I thought it was pretty funny.

    Episode itself was excellent and I think Maria’s letter might be the best thing in the series so far.

    1. I think they made the right decision by not showing the act though. because it fits in more with the episode as a whole. Showing it would mean taking time and ruining the flow of the episode imo, and its purpose in the episode didn’t require it to be shown. You can even question how much of that act was caused by the bonobo conditioning, considering the situation.
      The homosexuality in the earlier eps, however, has a valid reason for being shown on screen since the purpose of those scenes were for world building. Imo, it helped the viewer see their world (seeing is different from just knowing after all). Maybe it wasn’t really that needed, but it didn’t ruin the purpose and flow of that episode.

      1. I didn’t even get that according to the novel this was a scene where they were supposed to have sex. If I hadn’t read all those comments bemoaning the lack of making out scenes, I probably would have never known.

  5. Well… It was expected that they wouldn’t just drop the “when stressed-out instinct” part that easily. I’m glad they didn’t show it ‘coz IMO it will only be awkward if they showed that in this type of anime.

    My eyes are now set to that scheming Squealer Yakomaru w/c climbed his way from a peasant queerat to a high ranking one.

    And what Saki said about if it was possible if the queerats can do the “thing” that Yakomaru’s colony did to their queen to sustain her that can it can also be done to humans still intrigues me.

    1. Funny you brought up the bonobos factor, because it’s a very interesting angle to consider. How much of their copulation resulted from their social conditioning, and how much actually resulted from their raw emotions?

      Because by all accounts, their actions followed a very logical emotional process: They were the only two left in their respective social worlds that would truly love and care for each other, (outside their parents) and both had the largest overlap in feelings (loved the same boy) so much so that with the insecurity from Maria and Momoru leaving their copulation could’ve been seen as a standard step in emotional development.

  6. Well this is THE best show currently running not named Uchuu Kyoudai. I will even say this will come in my top 10 list ever when it’s over. Every episode, it seems like I’m watching a film anime instead of TV anime (get the difference?). It’s quite cinematic, this show. Yes, they kill off main characters quite easily, but that’s only a plus for me. I like anything unconventional, I do. And none of the stupid moe pandering crap. That’s always a double plus (Well I do realize the characters here have the eyes-big-as-your-fist with a point nose nonsense going on, but they don’t ever scoop down to moe pandering. EVER).

    I have been really tired and slightly depressed lately with so many generic anime shows left and right -one can trash them for so long before even that gets stale and feel pointless since the liquid crap stream never stops-, but this show is among very few rare blight stars. P;P is also quite good, but I wouldn’t call it a masterpiece like this one. Beyonds that there are 2-3 more I don’t mind watching, but not much to praise about. The rest is from everlasting generic cesspool of mediocrity that comes out season after season: yet some reason, is always mega-popular horse manure, like Justin Bieber.

    1. What’s your beef with “generic” shows anyway? You don’t even seem to have a real consistent definition of generic. It’s just anything you don’t like. If we’re using the generic definition of the word and not something you’ve come up with on your own then you’re railing against normalcy. However you also seem to dislike anything that falls too far outside your own comfort zone, such as Sasami-san. So much for liking anything unconventional. You’re effectively only complaining about things you don’t like, rather than that which is “generic”. That’s fine by me, but maybe you should consider a name change. Maybe deathtothingsidontlike, or deathtothingsthatdontfitintomyidealsofwhatexceptionalanimationshouldbe. That last one might be a bit long.

      Let’s assume that you aren’t completely misusing a word in order to validate your own opinion. What does a world without generic look like? If there’s nothing but the extraordinary, nothing is special. I’m sure you’ve heard that one before, maybe on some “generic” after school special. I’d like to question why you continue being so invested in a medium that is apparently so jam-packed with something you hate as to actively keep up with currently airing shows, but I’m sure I’ll get the usual “because sometimes there’s something good” response. I’m not you, so I wouldn’t know, but if I were getting the like:dislike ratio you seem to be getting out of this, I’d quit. Or at least not keep up with it so fervently.

      1. To throw in some intellectual stuff and to widen our knowledge a bit:
        He could just follow the argumentation of Schleiermacher and tell you you’re simply too stupid to see what “higher” literature,or in this case a “higher anime-series” is;) No really, that was/is an accepted theory in literature to just classify some people as not being able to understand valuable texts. Because it is actually quite hard to find valid arguments that tell you “this is good” and “this is bad”. So I wouldnt expect a consistent answer to your question.

      2. hey stop being coward and come up with your name, geez :). Kidding aside, it’t not my problem if you don’t get what my definition of generic anime is. It’s a self explanatory. Just watch Japanese anime longer a year and you’ll see the dreadful patterns. RC commenters has a mob mentality and like to do witch-hunt, so I have no hard feeling on your 15+ thumb-up pals, just to be clear.

        Now cereals-man, if the question is that sometimes I seem to like a certain generic show, such as Haganai. That’s a fair rebuke. I watch some generic shows like that despite all its shortcomings. So sue me! ha ha ha! I can’t be on crusade all the time! It’s exhausting. Besides I’ve already pointed out that even trashing them “gets stale and feel pointless after awhile” when it’s the same thing season after season. But seriously that doesn’t mean Haganai is not generic show nor I actually really like such shows. I don’t like Haganai that much and certainly you wouldn’t catch me praising it like I do on the shows I find to be not as generic. I can only think of 3 shows currently running that are worth praising (SSY, UK and shirokuma cafe) + 3 good shows (P;P, Kotoura-san, and Zetsuen no Tempest) that at least try to be different.

        Now on the other hand, stop being dishonest about my view on Sasami-san; c’mon you’re smarter than this. I’ve already explained in its post, but you nonetheless cherry-pick only what you want and distort my view to attack me. Unlike the point above, this argument is just silly. I will once again say that being unique doesn’t always mean it’s good while being generic is almost always bad. What else do you want me say on that matter? Also Sasami-san may have weird storytelling, it’s nothing but bad-trope characters. I’ll say again that I will have more appreciation for shows that are trying to be good then fail than doing the same old, same moe pandering shit season after season.

        And I’d have thought more thumb-ups for you two and thumb-down for me for a cheap point like “stop liking what I hate” or “deathtothingsidontlike”. Things like this to discredit my trashing always is expected. So much so that these folks go out their way to come to the post where I am praising a show. Putting a rebuke like this when I am trashing a show, okay then: but this is quite unusual, I’d think. Yes of course, if we really stoop down to the gutter, this point is true since it’s no secret that I don’t like generic shows and trashing shows perhaps imply this.

        HOWEVER while I ONLY attack the shows & their writers/studios and hardly ever their fans/bloggers, but the fans like yourselves always take this so damn personally as if I’m attack them personally and start attacking me personally (guarantee it’s always very few, so there is hope still at RC). Defend your shows if you must, but you get no sympathy from me for attacking me personally in return. And in the long run, resorting to personal attacks doesn’t earn you any point since you only do so as you feel offended for whatever reasons, but don’t know how else to respond. This is primal human instinctive stuff, folks. It’s as if I am attacking your religion/god or something, which you often get the same response.

        Point out to me where I attack posters personally in my original post. You can’t since I didn’t. My advice to you two is that stop taking bashing shows so personally! Unless you yourself is the writer of the show or has a family member who does so, I don’t get this vitriol. But hey, I never understood how people can listen to Justin Bieber or watch the same old generic moe pandering season after season, so perhaps I shouldn’t really expect logic and reason from some of my fellow RC posters.

      3. Mind if I step in to add a few things? I have my own reservations about generics/cliches or the scale people use to measure anime as good or bad, but to be fair unlike some people who complain about generics,tropes or cliches merely as a excuse to bash shows they don’t like, deathtogenericshows’s actually does what he/she says and criticize generics, indiscriminately(from what I have read anyway).And to me his posts are usually reasonable,level-headed and devoid of any obvious bias,provocation or agenda – except of course, for his dislike for repetitive/common patterns.Besides it’s always healthy to have at least one guy whose against the main stream, in the crowd, it helps keep things in perspective.
        Of course none of the above makes me feel better when he or someone else criticizes a show I REALLY like even if the criticisms are fair or/and reasonable.

        Seeing deathtogenericshows’s posts on several different pages on RC usually reminds me of a post I read on my Facebook page, it said: “Don’t be racist, hate everyone”(no offense intended) 😛

        p.s.: Don’t misinterpret this to mean I agree with deathtogenericshows’s views or posts.

      4. I don’t read the comments for every show, but I’ve found overall that deathtogenericshows has a pretty good idea of what is generic or at least … interesting for superficial reasons only.

        I agree with his comments on Vivedred & Maoyuu Maou Yuusha (the concept in the latter was awesome, but the implementation was horribly bland and generic IMO).

        Obviously not everyone agrees, but tastes vary & if something is really really interesting to some of the viewership (like say the camera angle in vivedred), they might not mind that it doesn’t break much new ground or take too many risks. Also .. just because a show is generic, it doesn’t mean that it is necessarily bad. It just means it’s something to enjoy like a popcorn movie instead of a play by Shakespeare.

      5. It’s great you aren’t bitter about the number of thumbs up I’ve gotten or the generally poor reception your comments always seem to get, but I’m not fishing for empty praise through some arbitrary approval system. This isn’t Reddit (Oh that really slaps me on the knee).

        If you don’t like Haganai, why are you watching it? That’s some pretty crazy self-abuse. I’d hardly call Haganai generic either.

        Of course I’d cherry pick your Sasami-san comment, it’s easily the most unusual show this season, but you’ve already written it off after a single episode. I also fail to see how I distorted your view.

        What is “moe pandering”? You seem to like using that term as well. Cute girls doing cute things? Because as interesting as the first episode of Kotoura-san was, I really think it’s going to end up fitting into that sort of category.

        You can stop bringing up the comment rating system, and if it makes you feel any better, I’ve never thumbed down any of your comments. You praised Shinsekai for a total of five sentences, then spent the rest of the comment complaining about other things being “generic”. I could accuse you of going out of your way to bring up the moe pandering or Justin Beiber. Good choice, by the way, Beiber. An apt comparison for most of your arguments, as the people complaining about him always seem to bring him up in completely unrelated topics. Honestly I only bothered to comment here because you seemingly went out of your way to bring up completely unrelated things. Couldn’t just let a positive comment about something you like go without attaching something negative about the things you don’t, could ya?

        I’ve taken nothing personally, nor did I ever attack you personally. I’m not one to get my パンツ in a bunch because someone dislikes something I like, so please don’t think I’m doing this because I’m upset that you attacked something I like. I was just genuinely curious as to why you seem so adamant in your hate towards generic things. I only wished to attack your argument, namely questioning whether or not your arguments against generic shows were reasonable or even healthy. If I were attacking you personally, I most certainly would have brought up your unusual usage of English, or you know, something about you as a person, rather than your ideas. I also never claimed you attacked anyone personally, you’re the only one claiming that has happened at all on either side. Really, having this discussion in a Shinsekai post is probably the best place for it, as we both like the show quite a bit. I don’t want to defend a show, I want to talk about your views in general.

        You don’t get this vitriol? Again, I could really say the same for you. I genuinely can’t understand why someone would spend so much time watching and complaining about something when you literally can’t get anything out of it. At the very least I got a response to my comment, and I stand a snowballs chance in hell of convincing you that you’re looking at things from a really warped perspective. What do you stand to gain from all of your comments? Most of the time when I see one of your comments they’re buried under a mountain of negative votes. Even with the small chance that someone from an anime production committee is reading RC, even reading the comments, what are the chances that he’ll go “Hey, this guy doesn’t like the way we’re doing things. We should stop caring about what our Japanese viewers want and start listening to him.”? Even if the entirety of RC, hell, the entirety of the English speaking anime viewing community were to feel exactly as you do, all that would happen is that licensing deals would stop happening entirely. Japanese animation production committees care only about Japan, in the same way Hollywood only cares about America.

        Again with the Beiber. The only people that talk about him are the people that dislike him. If the people that didn’t like him hadn’t made such a fuss over him, he wouldn’t be so popular. I don’t like him either, so you know what I do? Nothing.

        What you seem completely oblivious to is the fact that there are multiple aspects to everything, and that people who enjoy “generic” shows do so not because they love repetition, but because they like seeing new things done with previously established trends. You mention tropes, but you seem to forget the TVTropes motto: Tropes are not bad. The characters in Haganai are reconstructions of their character archetypes. Calling it generic is like calling Gurren Lagan a generic super robot show; it completely misses the point of the defining aspects of the series.

        You also neglected my last two points, namely: What is a world without generic, and do you really want that? and if you don’t like most of the things you watch, why do you keep up with them so adamantly? I said I would quit if I felt the same as you appear to, and I have, at least for US television. I’ve long since stopped paying for cable and only watch the things that interest me after they’ve been established as something I might like. Certainly this will make it so I miss a few things that I would like that were not very popular, but I don’t think it’s worth those few hidden gems it when I find so much of it to be so disagreeable. I really think I have better things to be doing with my time than sifting through a bunch of trash to find something decent. Like arguing with strangers on the internet.

      6. “What is the most resilient parasite? Bacteria? A virus? An intestinal worm? An idea. Resilient… highly contagious. Once an idea has taken hold of the brain it’s almost impossible to eradicate. An idea that is fully formed – fully understood – that sticks; right in there somewhere.”

        “The seed that we planted in this man’s mind may change everything.”

      7. cereals-man, cereals-man: Your short-lived popularity from fellow RC posters is up, I’m afraid. (It was you who used it to try to discredit me and back up your point, after all). Certainly you won’t win any favor by saying things like “I most certainly would have brought up your unusual usage of English, or you know, something about you as a person”.. I try not to respond to such lowball personal attack usually, but can’t resist this time since you’re so disingenuous on your attempt to hide your nature. Just say my grammer sucked, damn it, LOL! No need to go a roundabout. it’s hilarious a) since a perfect implement of grammer/complete eradication of spelling error/typo is not my upmost intention when I’m quickly writing something up on an anime post, b) hearing this from someone who’s not exactly a sparkling exemplar of great English grammer use – again you brought it up, not me. Does this mean it’s okay that I’m sloppy from time to time? No. But did it make you feel any better if you wrote that you wouldn’t, then went ahead did it anyway with this lowball stuff? You cannot both take the high road and roll in the gutter, which you do so repeatedly in your novel-length reply – admittedly I started this novel-lengthy thing and I really shouldn’t have :P; you really should try not to take that cheap shots, however tempting that are. Otherwise you’re shooting yourself in the foot (don’t worry, I do this as well, but I never do it against fellow posters, only against the shows/writers).

        “What you seem completely oblivious to is the fact that there are multiple aspects to everything”: yet you don’t seem to get that’s you’re “completely oblivious” yourself and you’re full of this if you re-read your own post. But I don’t fault you on this and I only point that out since you did. Just because you are misguided doesn’t automatically make your point invalid, which is what you try to argue. Aren’t we all oblivious about our own opinons, basically in some level? At some point, you gotta take a stand, which is what I do. Biases and selective decisions to ignore contracting narratives as they deem not as valid to oneself comes with it, so be it and it’s a given; I never claim to be an objective voice. You should try that sometimes. Au contraire, I’m a quite passionate subjective voice. There are many points in your post I can respond to, but I’m not going to; you’re probably as firmly entrenched on your view as me, so at some point, people have moved on and so have I, with this. And people don’t seem as confused as you what I’m against since I’m pretty consistent on my view.

        “I really think I have better things to be doing with my time… Like arguing with strangers on the internet.” Amen. But arguing is ok, though. It’s perfectly fine human engagements in 2013, as long as it doesn’t get personal, which you do despite your claim that you don’t. Shows/their studios is fair game, but going after posters/bloggers who do this with their time without any monetary compensation is not a fair game. With that, I rest my case.

  7. First time commenting…
    Thanks for the posts, Asobi, I always come here after watching the episodes to read the opinion from you and the comments ^_^

    I can’t make sense of the bizarre dream either, but here are some thoughts –

    1. https://randomc.net/image/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori%20-%2016%20-%20Large%2023.jpg
    feels like queerat queen eating her little queerats without any regard
    2. https://randomc.net/image/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori/Shin%20Sekai%20Yori%20-%2016%20-%20Large%2024.jpg
    somehow the left ones feel like tanks… perhaps symbolizing warfare in the future?
    3. we also saw Saki running past lots of human-like figures, half of them “living”(maybe that’s not the best word for it…) and half dead, and there’s also a shadow of Impure Cat around. A reflection of her village maybe?

    Perhaps it’s showing all the horror Saki has just experienced recently all in one go, visualizing her feelings and insecurity; mixing in a bit of foreshadowing of future and a character buried so deep in her memories that she could never forget, no matter awake or asleep. Just my thoughts 🙂

    Oh and the title of the OP should be “雪に咲く花”. I think it means “flower that blooms in snow”, though I’m not exactly sure. “秋月真理亜”(Maria) is just the singer, i.e. Hanazawa Kana.

  8. I found the comparison to watching eggs hatching quite chilling. Yes, fiends and karma demons are catastrophic things but Saki raises a good point about just how many children get disposed of due to nothing more than the adult’s paranoia. I’m sure, given time, Mamoru and Maria would have turned out fine if the adults didn’t jump the gun and set them off like that. At the same time, I thought that scene really weighed heavily on just how strong the adult’s fear was (and that they were right to be afraid).

  9. It occurred to me that they were looking for tracks in the wrong places because they were assuming standard navigation. Although more dangerous, Maria could carry Mamoru and hop from tree to tree, while Mamoru could both assist and scatter snow around when necessary.

  10. seriously, that allusion to the queerats’ skeletons looking like humans’ felt like a big clue. i don’t get why everybody sees them as evil, they seem more thirsty for equality than for power (and even then, humans aren’t better). they look different and their ways are slightly creepy but they are a very accurate mirror of humans. i feel like shinsekai yori might be more about harmony than a good vs. evil fight. most people agree shun and mamoru being threatened was unfair, but the queerats are the same. is a society taking advantage of other intelligent lifeforms considered “normal”? it reminds of the war on slavery.

    i feel sorry everybody is so interested in the fate of the leads to the point of completely forgetting the philosophical aspect of this anime.

    this a thoughtful show not a wank fest.

  11. A good episode but the animation lagged again. How I hate these psychedelic dream scenes! Bleah.

    But awesome interaction between the children and Squealer/Yakomaru. At this point Saki and Satoru need to be asking to be in charge of the queer-rats the village contacts, if nothing else than to keep Yakomaru’s empire under observation.

    Another time jump! How many memories will Saki and Satoru lose this time? Can Maria and Mamoru survive, even with the foreshadowing?

  12. I watch this anime with the constant worry of who will go next. I really don’t know what Maria might do in the future, but….. I lover her too much and I don’t want it so!!

    The opening sequence was so cute too, and it made me sad. Gosh those adults, living in fear. I take back what I said last week about not trusting Satorou, maybe I was still not over the ones we already lost. I was so worried about Mamoru so bad and what Maria might do, either way, sooner or later, their fate will be decided. Though I’m wondering, they get rid of children sure, but… the next episodes they will be 20+, will they still be treated as children? or they will become the ones to select children. I wouldn’t take that out I guess.

    Thanks for your review.


  13. I have about the same feelings about Maria’s letter. I don’t really disagree with what she says, but I think she just doesn’t have all the information, like Saki has gotten from Tomiko. I can’t say that knowing the fears about Fiends (does Maria realize where Fiends come from?) makes it ‘good’ that so many children are sacrificed, but knowing that there’s justification for it changes the equation.

    Similarly, Maria doesn’t seem to know the reason why the adults are afraid of children. It seems very much a youthful narcissism that makes her think that adults are pained by their children taking over, changing, reconstructing, even deconstructing the works that they have put in place, but in reality I can’t think of what parents would appreciate more than seeing their children become successful adults.

    I find that I still am swayed more by Tomiko’s realities, as horrible as they are. Maria’s observations strike me as authentic for a mid-teenager, seeing problems with the world, and wanting to fix them, but not understanding the causes of the problems.

    1. In the end it’s all just pretty bad. Can say I was pulled in more by Maria’s letter. She may not have all the information, but it doesn’t make the spirit of the letter any less right. Tomiko’s realities are compelling, but at the same time it feels like they’ve found a solution that mostly works so they are just sitting on it rather than trying to find a way to not have to slaughter their own children.

      It may be a terrible opinion, but have felt like if this is what humanity has to be in order to survive it makes you question the point of it all. One might just consider the evolution of cantus as a terrible genetic mistake that has long since destroyed the human race. What’s left is just something else entirely. Doesn’t seem like there is any real future for this society. Eventually something bad will happen and just wipe them out or at least decimate their population enough for a race like Queerats.

      Curious to see just how bad things get before that point though.

      1. Well, I wonder if we’re putting our thumbs on the scale by still using the word ‘humanity’. I realize they still call themselves that, but perhaps the species should be considered to have changed to something else. It’s definitely a difference in capabilities.

        And if we call them something else, how much does that change the standards we judge them by, or that they should judge themselves by. It’s also hard to argue “Well, your species shouldn’t exist, and you should stop trying to live and continue.” That’s in violation of the number one rule of life. It always wants to continue. No, it’s not good the things they do. But it’s also not good that many other animals have fratricide and infanticide. But they do the things that perpetuate their genes and their species, so maybe that’s really the final arbiter of this species.

  14. Not a novel reader, but kuromitsu over at AnimeSuki detailed what happens during Saki and Satoru’s night together. To all the people who say they wish it was shown, you’ll probably think twice when you realise who the two were thinking about (if you think it’s all about Saki/Satoru, anyway). As for me, I’m glad it wasn’t included just because the episode was already emotionally heavy enough without it — can’t imagine how it would’ve felt if they ended it on that.

    I didn’t think I was so attached to Maria until this episode. The entire thing was so gut-wrenching and tragic to watch. It’s become so masochistic watching this show because of how heartbreaking it’s become… but I can’t stop watching because it’s so well-done.

  15. OMG… DAT OP. -Makes self comfortable as I set up a chair and glues on yuri googles- Saki had it bad for Maria at a young age…

    Why, why, why was this OP release just right AFTER Maria leaves? What was the purpose of showing yuri goodness of Saki’s first crush/love with Maria when she’s gone with someone else, and this episode ships the crap out of Saki and Satoru in perhaps the most awkward sex ever in anime? (Lolz.) Like seriously, I don’t understand. D:

    I don’t approve that Saki read the saddest letter ever in History of someone who loved her deeply and had sex soon after. Like really? D: Saki, that’s not right.

  16. Some people have been saying that this episode’s OP is the new ED. We’ll find out I guess.

    Still interesting to see how Squealer will play a significant role in the future. Especially since the Queerats have gained power, I wonder what will they exactly do with it? There have also been speculations of Maria turning into a fiend and many guesses along those lines.

  17. I’ve never really liked Saki with Shun or with Maria, so I guess you could say I’m happy camper with the way things have panned out… except that they didn’t really have a choice. Saki and Satoru are pretty much stuck with each other. I can appreciate how their “night together” wasn’t really born out of any physical attraction or longing for each other (although I hold that Satoru does like Saki, or at least did, when they were kids) but instead as a very human, not just bonobian, need to affirm life, to make themselves believe they aren’t alone. Which I think is so much more powerful, especially when we’ve seen just how flippantly these kids treat love. I’m looking forward to seeing love from their perspective as 26-year-olds; I am more of a Saki/Satoru shipper than anything else, so I’m hoping for at least some baby steps forward… but I think I’ll enjoy the show regardless of whatever tack it takes in the future. Don’t let me down, A-1!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *