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I wouldn't blame people for dropping this series after episode 3, but heed my words: now is the time to pick up Shin Sekai Yori if you're not watching it or have dropped it!
Admittedly, Shin Sekai Yori's first three episodes didn't get me excited. I saw potential in the series but questioned the abnormal amount of time that the episodes used up on just focusing on the everyday lives of the children. An unforeseen build-up indeed!
Prior to this episode, the opening sequence didn't make much sense and now we know they were used for the sole purpose of explaining the history of the world in which Shin Sekai Yori is set. Very nice and nice and artistic, and surprisingly enough they accompanied the mass amount of information in this episode very well.
Normally an information dump - economic term, believe me - would have been a mess, but somehow it works. The sheer amount of information in this episode was mind-boggling and a little hard to keep track of, although given how little we actually knew about everything going on, it ended up working. If you need a need a summary, here it is and with some possible ties to real life events:
- Raman-Klogius "Fox In the Henhouse" syndrome - The syndrome is a real metaphor used in a published paper about privatization and democracy.
- Hashimoto-Appelbaum on the "Karma Demon" - Hasmioto's disease affects the thyroid below the Adams apple (easy naming ) and the thyroid is ultimately responsible for hormones that coordinate many bodily functions.
- Azerbaijan's Imran Ismailov - No ties to real life but I'm loving how my country got mentioned in an anime! So far it has only been a few US TV series, but now it has appeared in Eastern entertainment.
- 4 Groups formed: Slave Driving PK Users, Common Folk Hunters, Thief-Murderers with PK abilities and Scientist searching for cures.
- Bonobo Behaviour - Factual in real life also, Bonobo's use sex as a way to resolve conflict. Don't ask me how I know that without any need to search Google.
All of this information is quite dark, and the presentation of it followed suit. The past two episodes had been a little to upbeat for my liking, which is why all the horror that came with the storytelling was a delight. A lot of answers were given to questions I had and now the setting makes more sense. There is a resemblance to many superhero style series where "With Great Power Comes Great Responsibility" and the sci-fi was retained also. The crowning glory came at the end of the information, where Shin Sekai Yori created more mystery and questions to be answered.
The ending of the episode was also a contributing factor, with all the creatures, but that fuelled my sci-fi hunger more than it did my thirst for mystery. Also the appearance of a mysterious priest with Cantus-stripping abilities made this series go in a direction worthy of an adventure series.
So much going on! That said, I'll stop the review right now and let you rush to watching this episode.