Anime – From The New World [REVIEW] – A Unique Coming-of-age Story From A New World

MyAnimeList Rating: 8,47/10
Genres: Sci-Fi, Mystery, Horror, Psychological, Supernatural, Drama
Studio: A-1 Pictures
Author: Yusuke Kishi (Story), Tooru Oikawa (Art)
Seiyuus: Aya Endou, Yuki Kaji, Mai Toudou

Every dog has its day and; all things have their personal historical records. However, there is one record we couldn’t be explored, we buried deeply so that the younger generation who will carry out their duties in the future will never know what trauma things have happened. “From the New World” is a coming-of-age anime but it’s not your typical everyday anime of drama, action, romance, or thriller. Personally, this anime seems to contain a message related in the future, a message that really predicts what would happen in the future. There is plenty of anime back in the fall of 2012 which is one of my favorite seasons. There are “Psycho-Pass,” the dark one, “Love, Chunibyo & Other Delusions!,” the weird one, “The Pet Girl of Sakurasou,” my most-crying one, “BTOOOM!,” not too great but enjoyable, and “JoJo’s Bizarre Adventure,” the internet favorite ones. “From the New World” or “Shinsekai yori” is so underrated in Indonesia, one of the most unknown by many people because the story is so complex but hard to stand on the track. Even though I’m now in a busy time, this is one of the hardest that I, at least, always put my time into this anime yet it’s hard to keep up without in the right mood. However, “From the New World” is definitely one of the greatest masterpieces I’ve seen since “Steins;Gate” or the one I seem always to think as bests.

Following a sudden outbreak of psychokinesis in 0.1% of the population, a rapid transformation swept the world. The godlike ability to manipulate matter remotely turned many power wielders to violence, inciting a long period of upheaval. Finally, after a chaotic era shaped by the rise and fall of oppressive regimes, the psychic humans were able to achieve a fragile peace by isolating their society, creating a new world bound by complex rules.

In the town of Kamisu 66, 12-year-old Saki Watanabe has just awakened to her powers and is relieved to rejoin her friends—the mischievous Satoru Asahina, the shy Mamoru Itou, the cheerful Maria Akizuki, and Shun Aonuma, a mysterious boy whom Saki admires—at Sage Academy, a special school for psychics. However, unease looms as Saki begins to question the fate of those unable to awaken to their powers, and the children begin to get involved with secretive matters such as the rumored Tainted Cats said to abduct children.

Shinsekai yori” tells the unique coming-of-age story of Saki and her friends as they journey to grow into their roles in the supposed utopia. Accepting these roles, however, might not come easy when faced with the dark and shocking truths of society, and the impending havoc born from the new world.

Source: MAL

It’s a post-apocalyptic story, taking place in Japan. After a terrifying tragedy caused the world became messed up, we stretch even further in the next thousands of years since that terrible incident. The story focused on five children during their childhood, adolescence, and adulthood. The world focuses on a power such as telekinetic or psychokinesis which you can use what a term to name the power. In short, Cantus, which is the characters called at, works quite like the Force from the “Star Wars” franchise. It doesn’t matter if you can still control the power, but the power itself can cause a person to become a psychopathic and insane person if they used on wrongly. Therefore, the world is tightened by a rule from the society. At the very least, this is the one that shows a twist in each episode. The first three episodes are an introduction which seems vague, showing the occurrence before the present times alternately will eventually introduce the major conflict at the fourth episode. From here, this is going to never be the same again. There are so much mysteries surface, too much information which you’re so hard to track one by one, humanity, the rat races, the dark one, the demon itself, there are so much. At least, each of the episodes always draws a variety of anticipations, the climax awaits from each episode which predicts what would appear in the eternity seems funny because it’s impossible.

The narrative in this anime reminds me of Barry Jenkins‘ “Moonlight.” Just like “From the New World,” there are three acts of narrative that will be told without any transition telling its, leaving a profound reaction, and using a sudden time-skip. The first act of narrative is about Saki, the major character, along with her friends went through their everyday life in general together which in the end, everything is never the same when they find out that they are bound by an isolated bond from the society. This narrative tells how a rat race or Queerats, a race which lives side by side with humans, will be introduced. These children later know how society treats them from bit by bit, the children begin to disappear but in fact, they never realize it. The second act of narrative is Saki and her friends who’ve grown up which I don’t know why many viewers dropped this anime because this narrative contains homosexuality, the rest is just one or two episodes. They begin to know the circumstances around them, how to deal with feeling from each other, a coming-of-age phase of how these characters participate in it. The third act of narrative is Saki who has become an adult and has participated in the society. Now, this is the real shit begin. There were so many moments which I had never forgotten how the writer got an idea like this. The act contains the other side of the society, the dark side of humanity, revolutionary, a coup d’etat, open-minded, anti-climactic, and the ending which gives a natural impression without a happy or sad ending. It keeps you to make an interpretation in any context so the ending didn’t give any specific answer to the values that contained in it.

At first, I felt weird because the setting didn’t give me any impression of post-apocalyptic. The setting is thousands of years into the future which could be, a millennial background that’s so sophisticated in dystopia or post-apocalyptic ways. They are not what I always see in general such as “Akira.” Yet, the setting is nothing because the perspective is told in a different panorama so it doesn’t look like post-apocalyptic movies except at the climax episode where the setting describes Tokyo, the city which not the same as it’s now. The quality of the art is standard, blatantly, solid, yet minimalist, especially in the character design. Yes, A-1 Pictures is the studio that works on this anime which I don’t really see their trademark. The animation is clearly self-explanatory but the environment is one of the best in this aspect. It’s so clear that the environment can portray everything, the tone is constantly improving as, for example, when in the dark circumstances, the environment reduces the lighting as it looks the same as the character’s feelings. In a nutshell, this kinds of art are not the one which is so typical for many people, but the way of its execution is so far in the details are.

The soundtrack is simply, an amazing yet intense soundtrack I’ve ever heard. I thought, Clint Mansell’s “Lux Aeterna” is the most frightening soundtrack I’ve ever heard or; every John Williams‘ score which becomes an earworm. The music in this anime always uses the vocal chant or tenor to symbolize every scene full of mystery which always amazes me because it resembles the capture of the environment and how the characters are feeling. The ambient sound always being in a silence or; kinda reminds me of Depeche Mode’s “Enjoy the Silence,” a music further away from the world. It’s so amazing that how the tense is build ups and how it’s fit with the sequence. There are no opening theme songs in this anime except in one episode which eventually became the ending theme song. “Watera Ringo” by Risa Taneda is quite memorable and “Yuki ni Saku Hana” by Kana Hanazawa doesn’t really sound like her own voice. Of course, for me. The voice actors are well-performed especially Daisuke Namikawa as Squealer is the most interesting. When it comes to the action sequence, the music is kinda like a ‘drum and bass’ or typical electronic music but it’s always in the same composition with no variation at all.

The characters focus more on Saki and Satoru from the first to the end. The development of how these characters are dealing with are so well-developed. Every narrative has a consequence at every moment because I feel their feelings. This anime pulls you slowly into it. The supporting characters also have a great job in participating and supporting the main characters. Some supporting characters have plot devices. The core of the main story in this anime at first focuses on these five characters who originally know nothing, experience their coming-of-age stories, and are created with an unpredictable twist. The second is the rat races. They fight with their all the races, opposed to each other but in the end, this is like some kind of revolutionary about a race with a different argument from a race which wants to be above from all else. Humanity, which is described as one of the most determined creatures, even the rat race considers them as gods, but the rat race is always oppressed yet is on the lowest pyramid of humans, even though they are also like humans who can think intelligently, speak, and even act like a human in general. These races finally face you with some simple but meaningful questions: who is the bad guy? Is that the only way? Why run away from reality? Why hide a fact which created by the race itself? The characters also have a clear reason why they turned off the characters in the story both the main casts and the supporting casts. Each time, there are those who are based on the character whether it could change their fate, destiny, or a trigger of each character. Each of them’s explained in full detail which my minor problem is too much information. They often repeated the information that they were explained before. It’s not too much of a problem if you aren’t serious in enjoying it’s not difficult to still keep on the track.

Although I like a complex or heavy story, “From the New World” isn’t one type which can be enjoyed just like that. It starts with nothing, nothing to begin with how to understand the storyline given vaguely until it suddenly comes the main case. Regardless of this anime has everything from action, romance, thriller, psychological, and horror, there is a bridge that distinguishes the genre. Several times, I dropped this anime and not yet, there is so much I wanna do instead of watching this anime. Yet, it’s one of the must-watch for everyone who hasn’t witnessed this such masterpiece of anime. Casual viewers might find it difficult but it would be better to enjoy it one-per-one episode.

4,5 Star

From the New World” is like an anti-isekai or anti-fantasy of anime which I don’t mean offend someone too. It’s too exaggerating to say that but this is one of the gems with the author’s extensive intelligence. This isn’t your typical post-apocalyptic, not your typical thriller, psychological, action, drama, or romance, but this is a fantasy full of various meanings and interpretations. With a really complex story, full of various twists, drawing some intense, anticipating, and interpretation and open-minded, I think “From the New World” at least one is overrated, I admit, but overrated doesn’t mean this anime is bad. I just wanna give a few shouts out to Indonesia, which some might forget about this anime. You’ve to give a try; there is no element of coercion but at least try it. Such a masterpiece; it contains various moral messages as well as a prediction which predicts the situation of a world temporarily.


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