From The New World Episode 22

[UTW]_Shinsekai_Yori_-_22_[h264-720p][908E0AE5].mkv_snapshot_09.37_[2013.03.08_15

Recap: Having found refuge from the Fiend’s killing spree, Saki and Satoru retrieve a mysterious box left behind by Saki’s mother.

Aquagaze‘s thoughts: 

In the town where I was born
Lived some folks with ESP
But their hubris sparked a war
Now my friend and I must flee

So we sailed to Tokyo
Tryin’ hard to remain unseen
And we talked an hour or two
In our ugly CGI submarine

We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine
We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine

And our friends are dead and gone
Someone tell me what’s going on
I think my life’s just one big joke

We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine
We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine

Full speed ahead, Mr. Kiroumaru, full speed ahead!

Humankind is full of shit 
Maybe genocide is what we need 
Instead of bombs to kill a kid 
In our CGI submarine 

We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine
We all live in a CGI submarine
CGI submarine, CGI submarine

[UTW]_Shinsekai_Yori_-_22_[h264-720p][908E0AE5].mkv_snapshot_14.14_[2013.03.08_15.18.53]

Dragonzigg‘s thoughts:  With Aqua having nicked the cheap joke, it falls to me to provide analysis for this episode.  And hey, it’s not all bad!  I must say I’m totally onboard with the basic plot introduced here that looks like it’s going to take us through to the end. The ‘quest for an item’  is one of the basic nuts and bolts in the storytelling toolbox for a reason – it’s simple, yet provides our characters with a clear objective, a direction for the story to move in and plenty of potential obstacles to derail the journey without dramatically changing the overall mission.  For New World, which I’ve often accused of drifting aimlessly from plot point to plot point, this seems to be a canny decision which should hopefully ensure we at least get a relatively tightly scripted finale to the show.

It’s also smart to provide a link back to the ancient civilization aspect of the story which has lain dormant recently.  The irony of the supposedly utopian post-apocalyptic society having to resort to one of ‘old’ mankind’s ugliest tactic is noted, although I’m not sure the show has enough depth at this point to leverage that.  The return of Kiroumaru is also appreciated, simply for the sake of an authoritative, level headed figure who appears to know his shit and has at least some measure of badassery. His joining the team isn’t strictly necessary, but hey, if you’re going to turn it into Journey to the West, he’s one of the better choices. Certainly better than Inui, who appears to have become a main character almost by accident.

[UTW]_Shinsekai_Yori_-_22_[h264-720p][908E0AE5].mkv_snapshot_17.39_[2013.03.08_15.19.06]

That said, there’s still issues with the story direction. Chief among these is the decision to make the ‘Psycho Buster’ a biological weapon, a brave one but one seemingly made without an understanding of the implications.  This may of course change once we get more clarification, but for now it appears Saki and co are thinking they can target the fiend using the mutated anthrax and wipe it out with no collateral damage. Allow me to say this just once – Biological weapons do not work that way. The reason they are so incredibly dangerous is that you can’t put the genie back in the bottle. Once you pull the trigger, you effectively have no control over where the infection might spread.

In this case, Saki and co are talking about unleashing a genetically engineered variation of one of the most famously hardy bacteria in existence, one that’s specifically designed to target psychic users who now make up the entirety of the Earth’s human population.  It’s like trying to kill a single person with an atomic bomb – it’s not that it’s difficult, it’s that it’s impossible.  The only way that this plan could work is if they sealed the Fiend in an airtight capsule, infected him there and then hurled the capsule into space, an impractical plan to say the least. Otherwise, you’re looking at the possibility of a global genocide, an unfortunate side effect to put it mildly. There may of course be some crazy scifi reason why this won’t happen, but it’s certainly not made apparent.

[UTW]_Shinsekai_Yori_-_22_[h264-720p][908E0AE5].mkv_snapshot_09.39_[2013.03.08_15.10.22]

Otherwise my major complaint about this episode is the truly appalling animation, a refrain that’s become sadly common in recent writings on the show.  The initial shot of the submarine honestly made me double take for a second so basic it is, and Kiroumaru is nearly constantly off model, mostly due to his somewhat complex facial hair/fur. It’s very tough to fully sink into a world when the blasted apocalyptic wasteland you’re being told is Tokyo is so clearly done on a budget the size of your lunch money. I’m not saying good shows need good animation (see Evangelion, among others) but it would certainly help make this experience more palatable.  nevertheless, I’m glad that New World appears to be coalescing as we move towards the end, and there’s even the tantalising prospect of a final showdown.

Random observations

  • Not only is it Saki who’s scared of the bugs and guano (because she’s a GIRL, hurr hurr), she complains about walking through it. You have psychic powers! You just levitated a submarine! Float over that shit!
  • Kiroumaru looks intensely dumb in human clothes, not helped by the fact he appears to have shrunk.
  • Unless my memory has gone severley wonky (always a possibility I admit) the voice speaking to Saki in the preview is Shun.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.