Reaching new heights.
Shin Sekai Yori Episode 17: Footsteps of Ruin
Wow. What an incredible episode. This may be one of the best episodes that has aired so far for this anime. Not only has a lot of predictions that you readers have made in the previous episodes (14, 15, 16) came true, but the story is achieving greater heights with increased tension. Let’s get right down to it.
12 Years Later
Saki is now twenty-six years old and she is part of the Department of Exospecies Control. Basically, it’s the investigation and regulation of queerats. Why did they get the name of “exospecies?” One can assume that they are becoming more of a threat to humanity. As the Queerats advanced to become even more human-like, their presence gave rise to the need for applications for war and things among those lines.
War and conflict are two things that are found in all parts of human history. Queerats, displaying intelligence that may rival humans, are actively using strategies similar to how humans have fought. Spider Wasps, the supposed allies of the Giant Hornets, were attacked by supposed allies of the Robber Fly Colony. As a result, the “gods” must display its authority or they would be seen as inadequate.
The Queerat Conflict
Immediately, I start to get a strange feeling as Saki and the other participants are sweating and are acting extremely nervous. Unsettled would be an understatement as one can clearly see, the Queerats have gained enormous amounts of power and each of their situations may affect the well-being of the town. What gives me shivers is when Saki announces how the Robber Fly Colony operates as they overthrew their Queen and show signs of development similar to humans. Now, the question is, did that come from them or did it come from the Minoshiro? We all know the vast quantity of knowledge that it contains so it’s feasible that they did not have to invent it but they only had to copy it.
Kiroumaru vs Yakomaru
Kiroumaru and Yakomaru (That’s what I’ll call him from now on) enter and make some intense debates which end up with nothing but bitter resentment. Clearly, the relationship between the two is dire but war is not an option as both sides would suffer heavy casualties. Instead of using head-on combat like beasts would, they use subterfuge to find a means to an end.
Moreover, it seems that Yakomaru is being the same old self and trying to appear sincere but is in fact a devious little snake. Obviously, one would trust Kiroumaru as he is more noble. But in a world such as this, it would be foolish to rush to such a conclusion. Not only that, Yakomaru makes a convincing argument as it does seem logical but frighteningly intelligent. We have to wonder if they were always this keen as in this time skip of twelve years, they have advanced even more quickly than humans.
Advancement of the Queerats
Armor, gunpowder and narcotics?!?!? It’s gotten to the point where the anime clearly states the parallels between the Queerats and human societies in the past. They are even using military tactics as if they read from Sun Tzu! They seem to love the power they are given and the humans are standing idle as they continue to advance further. When will it become the point that they cannot be ignored? When will it be the point that even those with Cantus cannot stop them? Will it ever get to such a point? Although, for now, the colonies are concerned with extending their area of influence and continually advancing as we do today.
Spider Wasp’s Betrayal
Remember those Spider Wasps that were supposedly on the Giant Hornet’s side? Yeah, well they switched sides and the Goat Moths, a colony associated with the Robber Fly Colony, won. So, what Yakomaru said in the meeting is true but only with their own side instead of Kiroumaru’s. But if that were all, then this episode wouldn’t be as great. What really shocked and made me smile and shiver is Satoru’s announcement.
Before we look at what Satoru said and the preview, let’s analyze the the for a bit. Sung by Maria, this undoubtedly is the foreshadowing to her importance in the future episodes. For some reason, at the end of the ending, as Maria rises into the sky and is crying, it almost seems like she becomes a martyr. It’s as if she’s sacrificing herself for some purpose. Or, it could be redemption for what she does in later episodes. It makes me think that the series will end on more of a happy note even if it may be bittersweet.
These lines mark the beginning of the probable tragedy that will soon follow. How? How could they possibly fall after seeing their ferocity and abilities in battle? They crushed their enemies in one hour even though they were outnumbered. Silly me, you guys were discussing this in the previous episodes. Why? MARIA.
Episode 18 Preview – Maria is back
I can’t hold back my excitement when I see Maria appear once again. It’s mostly because of all your comments that have made the anime much more enticing to follow. Maria returns and just like the comments said, she sides with Yakomaru. Why? Well, it wouldn’t be far fetched to revisit those episodes and re-read the comments as they may very well be true. Not only are they back, but we also see a… fiend (Or is it a Karma Demon?) at the very end of the preview. As explosions erupt in the town and Saki’s face is covered in blood, the mysterious figure can be only a sign of destruction. Is it Maria hiding herself? What is she after? Why is she doing this? Is it because of the way the town treated the people? Most of all, how will this affect the very foundations of their society?
Shin Sekai Yori Episode 17 Review
All I can say is that this episode is amazing. I found it to be the tensest episode yet as the characters are visibly sweating and under pressure. This creates an atmosphere that weighed heavily on me and made me feel emotionally involved. At its surface, it may seem like a dialogue heavy episode with less “content” than the previous information bombs. However, with this episode, we can draw many assumptions and ideas that we couldn’t have without it. Honestly, I could easily go on for another 1000 words but alas, I must finish this post and get to sleep. So, what do you all think? Do you enjoy it or do you not? What did you find interesting with this episode? What are your speculations as to what will happen in future episodes?