The Promised Neverland
The Promised Neverland is a thought-provoking, well-paced turn on the “prison escape” genre. There are some predictable twists, but more than enough surprises that make you turn back a chapter or two to see how it all fits together. Each chapter is presented with such a confident hand and beautifully designed artwork that it all adds up to a truly absorbing experience.
The first five volumes (tankoban) cover the same plot points as the first season of the anime series, but at a remarkably more measured tempo. The art by Posuka Demizu, with deceptively light lines, is the perfect setup for a darker storyline, and the panels of true horror gain extra impact in contrast to the almost too-cute characters. Writer Kaiu Shirai adds just enough heart to the ticking-clock storyline to keep things from getting too cerebral, though there is still room for these characters to grow more distinctive from each other in action more than words.
Will the storyline keep its urgency after this initial and almost self-contained first phase?