The second half of From the New World (aka Shin Sekai Yori) is as compelling as the first, and even more morally ambiguous.
The second half of the series is, in more or less equal parts, about revealing the truth to Saki Watanable and about subverting Saki into becoming part of a system she despises.
The finale does offer some hope that Saki may manage to change the system for the better from the inside. This is however left unresolved, as are the implications of a personal act of mercy on Saki’s part.
I really don’t want to go into details about From the New World this really is a series left as unspoiled as possible.
Suffice it to say that the dystopia of the human society is darker than I realised, with more than a touch of genocide to it, and a huge dose of slavery. There is too much “ends justify the means” in the world building for me to be comfortable with the idea that this society can, or should, be saved.
Possibly the greatest strength of From the New World is that I don’t think the viewer is supposed to be comfortable with either the situation or the resolution.
That this is meant to be confronting, that From the New World is meant to challenge the assumptions and privileges of the viewers.
Overall this is a high quality series with strong writing. I’m tempted to buy it if only to encourage the anime industry to produce more like it.
If you can handle the subject matter then I strongly recommend From the New World as a “watch once”. Whether I’d watch From the New World a second time remains to be seen, at this point I’m not sure if I’ll ever want to.
NB: Hanabee will be releasing Part Two in September.