I had high hopes for this one, really high hopes, but sadly I think this is the worst one of the season. If you enjoyed it, that’s great, more power to you! I would say that even I would continue watching this, but I’ve learned that blogging about series you’re not excited about, just brings mental fatigue and unnecessary stress, it puts you under a specific type of pressure that it’s hard to describe because it not only isolates you in in a niche most people just fly away from (aka Dropped), but most of the time you want to say nice things about an anime, thousands of hours have been poured over every single frame, sweat blood, and pixels, there are people behind the show, who are largely underpaid, you want to support it, but sometimes if it doesn’t click with you, it just not a match. This is the case with Deep Insanity: The Lost Child.
The premise is simple, in fact, it might be a little too simple for something like this, a giant hole has opened underneath Antarctica, at the bottom there lies an entrance into the Asylum an underground labyrinth dungeon-maze full of monsters. Now a frontal assault in the form of a military base has been set up as its first response towards the situation, soldiers named Sleepers go into this dungeon, in the hopes of? Exterminating monsters, and gaining admission? That last part is not exactly clear, it seems some exposition is missing. Its character writing could be clearer and their reason for fighting made better.
Maybe it’ll be delivered in the upcoming episodes, but this first episode failed to give a good impression. And not just to me, currently holding a 5.80 on MAL, rated by 696 users (as of this writing), while last season’s video game adaptation fiasco, Scarlet Nexus, has a 0.02 point difference scoring a 5.78 rated by 11,372 users. It might be that Deep Insanity has fewer rates by users, but the similarity is there, and hard to ignore.
Even though this anime is produced by Square Enix, that’s all of their involvement apparently, as the 3D visuals stand out like a sore thumb, for a company with an internal division dedicated to producing high-quality moving pictures, they hold back on making tutelage of other companies under their wings, or sharing an engine (with a subscription model of course) that streamlines high-quality 3D graphics in both cell shade and hyper-realistic.
More and more video game adaptations are being produced with little to no disregard for the final outcome, multimedia projects tend to be mediocre at best, and there’s not a single strand of originality here. I can’t help but compare it to something like Made in Abyss. One thing that pulled me into Made in Abyss was the mystery, shortly foretold in the first couple of episodes. Another key lore of Made in Abyss when ascending the fissure you get hit with the sickness, in Deep Insanity there’s something similar, but it seems like you need to faint first before converting into one of the monsters. AKA the Scarred that get affected with Randolph Syndrome. The disease that is affecting humanity is called Randolph Syndrome and it apparently originates from the Asylum, people outside wear masks and hope not to get infected with the disease. At least in Advent Children, the geo-stigma made sense because it’s a disease caused by Sepiroth being inside the lifestream, trying to get out, or something like that. In Made in Abyss the longer you dive, the harder you rise, and the more humanity you lose. It makes sense. In Deep Insanity maybe things get explained better or make more sense as pieces move along, but frankly, I have no qualms figuring that out for me and keeping it to myself. This is one of those series I’m honestly ashamed to tell other people about, the animation is good, I guess, but what made me lose it in a not intentional way, was when I saw the poor’s man Nerve, aka Antarctica. This is a futuristic military setting, of course, they’re going to take inspiration from Evangelion put at least try to come up with a semi-original name for the military company occupying the big gaping hole. Mash some letters together and never explain it.
At least Nerv stands for courage. It just seems lazy in its worldbuilding and a very bad take into trying to get people to go play the game. But once again, why even have an anime that is going to go into international waters if the game itself doesn’t have a global version. People get turned into monsters, other people go in and beat them, there’s nothing special about the Asylum it’s just there unexplored with little to no consequence of going in. In Made in Abyss just going in was a big risk already.
As you might have already seen as you read this first episode review, I haven’t mentioned any of the characters. So, Shigure Daniel Kai (Shimono, Hiro) is our protag, and he joins because he wants to be a hero (really, that’s his reason?!), but other than that he’s pretty much an empty vessel for people to beetle themselves too. At least the protag in the game is cooler. Nothing really special about him. Just an ordinary Joe, that is trusted into a world, not of his own creation. Everyone else is introduced with text over the screen, and you’re crazy if you think I remember any of them at all.
Good news though, not that anyone cared, I’ll be picking up Build Divide for the rest of the season as it’s a little better than this hot piece of garbage, and won’t be keeping up with Deep Insanity, but of course, wait for official confirmation from the upcoming blogging schedule to see who’s blogging what show!