Shin Sekai Yori is a 25-episode series produced by A-1 Pictures and released by Aniplex. Shin Sekai Yori had by far the most intriguing storyline of any anime I’ve seen recently, but it lacked in other areas, which prevented the series from becoming a masterpiece. I’m going to do this review a bit differently and look at the good, the bad, and the ugly.
For the past few episodes of Shin Sekai Yori I’ve thought that there was something fishy about Yakomaru’s plan. Now that episode 23 has aired, I am looking forward to seeing what Yakomau’s ultimate goal is and how he’s going to achieve it.
There’s no denying that Yakomaru is a brilliant strategist. His attack on the humans has so many layers that it seems almost impossible for the humans to have prepared for it. To recap, here are the different points of his plan so far:
At first glance, the worlds in Psycho Pass and Shin Sekai Yori couldn’t be any further apart. One has a megalopolis where humans have come to rely on machines so much that a central system now dictates everything they do. The other has people living in villages with wooden houses and no electricity. Taking a closer look at both worlds reveals that their social structure and method of reasoning are nearly identical. How did two vastly different worlds arrive at the same social structure?
In an earlier post, I discussed how eugenics has been used in Shin Sekai Yori to maintain peace, but also how it is crippling Saki’s society. A view that Saki’s society holds that may do even more harm is that of equality. To the people of Saki’s village, humans (specifically those who have passed their eugenics program) have no equals. They hold absolute power and judgement over all things and consider themselves gods. Is this view legitimate or do other people or species like the bakenezumi deserve to be treated like equals?
Note: this post contains spoilers up to episode 18.
Shin Sekai Yori (From the New World) is one of the most thought-provoking anime I’ve ever seen. The story deals with questions on the morality and ethics of society, politics, and personal relationships. One issue that is presented early on is that of eugenics, which is defined by the Oxford dictionary as, “the science of improving a population by controlled breeding to increase the occurrence of desirable heritable characteristics.” This field of science has been largely frowned upon as unethical and even “evil” since the end of WWII, but does that mean it shouldn’t be practiced? Does the situation in which Saki’s society in Shin Sekai Yori find itself in justify its use of eugenics?
Note: this post contains spoilers up to episode 16.