I can only describe this anime in one statement: A psychological mindfuck!
Every episode has you on the edge of your seating begging for more!
*Just letting you know there will be no spoilers in this post. So those of you who are afraid to go farther can relax in comfort.
At first glance, this anime is adorable! Lush, vibrant colors and bright lighting give this series a very beautiful feel to it. However, that eerie “something deeper lies within” feeling creeps in during the very first scene of the first episode when our three main characters stand in front of this gate. Two of the children, Emma and Norman, wonder what lies behind the gate, however, the other character, Ray, reminds them that Mother says to never go beyond the gate.
A little creepy. Right?
But, we transition to the next scene that takes place several years later. From here throughout the majority of episode one, it’s all happiness and beautiful children. The setting is an orphanage that appears very outmoded yet the year is 2045. There are no electricity, light fixtures, they hang their clothes up to dry, they are in the middle of a pasture surrounded by the forest and the mysterious gate…it’s an odd setting. However, all the children are happy. We start the episode off with playful running through the halls, a friendly game of tag, and, of course, sharing stories about what they plan to do when they first get adopted.
You may look at this anime for the first 18 mins and say, “Oh this is going to be a beautiful heart moving series like Violet Evergarden or March Comes in Like A Lion”… Until you see the last five minutes of the first episode and then NOTHING IS EVER THE SAME.
One of the orphans got adopted so she is taken to the gates by the headmaster of the orphanage who they name Mom. Well, the girl leaves her favorite stuffed bunny behind and our main characters, Emma and Norman, notice this. They run to the gates to catch up with Mom and the girl to return her stuffed bunny back, however, when they arrive at the gates, the unthinkable lies there waiting for them. The truth behind what the orphanage ACTUALLY is. The TRUE PURPOSE it serves.
And it’s pretty dark.
You may think you know what this orphanage is but until you watch episode 2, you will not be able to fathom what the hell is happening. And discovering the true purpose of this orphanage is just the tip of the iceberg. There are still many questions to be answered, things to uncover, and years of your life you probably won’t get back because you will be so on edge during every episode. I swear, there hasn’t been this big of a mystery since Eren found out about the basement in AOT.
What seemed like paradise, quickly turns into a living nightmare for our main characters. Now they must devise a plan to escape the orphanage and avoid their fate before it’s too late.
Filled with juxtaposition, suspense, thrill, and twists at every angle, I highly recommend everyone to check out this anime. I just finished episode 8 and all I can say is…it gets even more twisted.
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