If the first episode of an anime already defines how good it can be, “To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts” (かつて神だった獣たちへ) is definitely a must watch this summer. Most of the anime sorts out the background and settings in their first episode, but “To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts” brings a little bit more by sowing the seeds towards a tragic story.
The anime starts by telling the background of the story, which sets in the land of Patria. The discovery of a special crystals divides the country into two and a civil war breaks out between the South and North.
Death is inevitable in wars and the anime does not hesitate to portray the bloody and cruel war scene. To end the war, the North brought into existence the Incarnates (擬神兵), soldiers who could transform into giant mythical beasts and single-handedly destroy enemy emplacements.
The breathtaking action scene is undoubtedly the highlight of the anime. Each Incarnate can be transformed into different beasts and their unique abilities (e.g. one can be invisible like a lizard and one can inject venom like a viper) brings variables in the battles.
The Japanese name of the Incarnates (擬神兵) can also be translated as the “Imitation of God”, which further explains the importance of their existence. As they vanquish the enemy with unparalleled power and save the lives of people in desperation, they are pretty much like Gods walking on earth.
Under the leadership of Hank (ハンク), the Incarnates are feared by the soldiers of the South. Hank is indeed a gentle person and keep a good relationship with his childhood friend Cain (ケイン) and Elaine (エレイン). But their bondings later pave the way of a tragic story.
Elaine, a doctor whose research gave birth to the beastie soldiers, regrets to start the research. One of the Incarnates loses control of his powers and decided to end his own life before hurting the others. It turns out that bad things always happen when human tried to imitate the power of God.
When the war ended and a peace treaty was negotiated, Elaine decided to destroy all the Incarnates following the order of her superior. But her love towards Hank makes the job especially difficult. In the scene when she put a bullet in the chest of Hank, she cried out the heartbreaking truth that a peaceful society won’t allow the existence of the beasts.
The sarcastic part is that as the beasts are created in hopes of bringing peace, but when peace comes, there is no place to accommodate them. Earlier in the anime, Hank has discussed about the future with his troops and he planned on confessing his love to Elaine when the war is over. But the heart-warming scene was shattered by the truth that the Incarnates will never have a future when peace comes.
Elaine’s determination of killing all the beasts was stopped by Cain (ケイン) , who shoots her through the chest before fleeing with the surviving Incarnate soldiers. Hank, who was shot by Elaine, woke up after two months finding the death of his love and the betrayal of his friend.
The first episode finishes under the wrath of Hank as he vowed to hunt down all the uncontrollable beast, just as he promised his troops to stop them from harming other people.
The family picture of John, one of the Incarnates, also paves the ways of the following story, as his daughter Schaal (シャール) holds Hank responsible for his father’s death and seeks revenge on Hank.
All in all, the first episode of “To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts” has an intricate and sophisticated plot, which attract eyeballs in every scene. The intense and heart-stopping scene will never get you bored. Judging only by its first episode, there is a lot to expect for this anime.
■ 2nd PV