The Promised Neverland 020-022 – Review

The Promised Neverland:

Chapters 020-022

Reviewed by: Tom

Oh my.

Synopsis: Emma is an 11-year old girl living at an orphanage along with thirty-seven other children. They spend their days playing in the yard, the nearby forest, and taking test over their headsets in the house’s school room. When they turn twelve the children leave the orphanage, going beyond the gate they’ve been warned to never venture near. However, despite how quaint and comfortable this life has been for Emma and the other children, there’s a much darker truth awaiting them beyond that gate.

(Warning: Spoilers to Follow)

While exploring the gate one night, in hopes of delivering a forgotten stuffed toy to a departing friend, Emma and Norman, one of the smartest boys within the Orphanage, discover the horrible truth: The orphans are being raised as mere meat for horrific demonic creatures. Escaping back to the orphanage both Emma and Norman decide to try and find a way to escape with the other thirty-six orphans before they’re harvested too.

They recruit Ray, the last of the three top kids, and set about trying to determine the best means of escape. But Mother is onto them, recruiting another adult to come in and help her watch over the kids. Things take a turn for the worse, however, as the group is forced to conclude that there may even be a spy among them.

Review:

Chapter 020:

We continue right from last time as Sister Krone offers to join forces. Much of the chapter revolves around coming to decide whether to trust Krone or not. We learn from her that girls are given a choice, unlike boys, to either die or become Mothers. This part makes me wonder, having heard news that the series is going to be moving past this arc soon, if a future arc will involve Emma in a mother role, trying to escape the system that way.

Sister Krone tries to convince the kids that all she wants is to take over from Isabella and that them escaping is beneficial to her, as it’ll ensure Isabella’s downfall. But Norman doesn’t trust her, believing, rightfully that Krone seeks to not only take Isabella down, but gather evidence to out all of them and have them shipped out. This chapter goes a little bit too far into the “But I know that she knows that I know that she knows” territory for my tastes. It’s one aspect that the series gets a bit too bogged down in, and I hope the author can smooth that out going forward.

Norman agrees to the alliance, to use Krone for their benefit, although Emma wants assurance that they won’t be betrayed. Krone points out that they can always have Ray rat her out and ultimately they agree to work together. As they part ways, but agree to meet later, Emma can’t help but hate how Krone gave into the system so easily for her own personal benefit.

Considering how “crazy evil” she’s drawn, I should’ve thought this was obvious.

The chapter ultimately ends with Krone inviting both Norman and Emma inside to tell them whatever they wish to know.

Chapter 021:

We open with a brief flashback to Krone’s past as she worked towards becoming a Mother. We then snap over to just before Emma and Norman went to meet with Krone and the groups discussions about taking precautions.

Emma and Norman manage to learn more about the tracking devices, confirming what Ray told them. She even tells them how to possibly remove the devices with the supplies in the house. We also learn Krone is 26 and was raised at a different house than the one they’re in. Isabella is 31 and was raised and born on the same farm they’re on. Another ‘hint’ that Isabella is the far more dangerous of the two, seeing as she’s on familiar ground.

Krone hasn’t seen the outside, but knows there are humans there. Toys and Clothes are imported from the outside and she’s seen humans who stand on equal terms with the demons. This part interested me and I can’t wait to find out exactly what these humans are doing aiding the demons. However she doesn’t know how the world came to be like this. After a few more questions about how to escape they start to leave, thinking they kept their talk short and to the point enough to not offer Krone anything in return.

When you’re laughing at your computer screen but no one knows why.

However she reveals that from their mere body language alone the Children gave up far more than they ever wanted to. Rattled, but determined to keep their screw ups to a minimum Norman and Emma try to leave again, but Krone asks them if they know about the weird squiggly unreadable name that I hate trying to talk about because there’s no easy way to describe it since it’s not a word. She promises to tell the two of them about it next time they come by.

Norman realizes how dangerous Krone potentially is, which feels undermined by the end of the next chapter, and we end as Isabelle decides that with the escape just six days away, it’s time for her to do something. What? We don’t know, but she’s finally springing back into action.

Chapter 022:

Ray helps the five of them figure out how to work around Krone and the way their inspection plan for the escape will work. However if anything goes wrong they’ll need to cancel the inspection. Also Ray reveals his method for breaking the devices involves an instant camera that he asked Mother for. They then devise a plan to keep Sister Krone out of the way. I wonder if something about the camera’s tech damages the tracking devices in close proximity? You’d think if Ray could figure it out then Isabella could as well. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.

Krone however begins to search for how they plan to escape/break the tracking devices. To keep her distracted Ray plants a note that reveals a startling truth about Isabella that could potentially get her ousted from the Mother position. Krone goes all in on this, which makes her look really foolish again and easily manipulated. It’s frustrating how the manga keeps trying to build her up as a threat, but then has her manipulated so easily. She’s still my least favorite part of the manga.

You get side tracked way too easy, girl.

Krone goes searching for the evidence that backs up the note but just as she finds it Isabella comes calling. She hands Krone a pen knife and a letter. As soon as Krone opens it her eyes go wide and Isabella bids her goodbye.

Overall I feel these are good chapters. My complaints are fairly minor and I’m mostly excited to see the next chapter and learn what it is Isabella managed to do to get Krone ousted. I still can’t wait to see what the arc after this is going to be and how well the manga will carry forward once Emma and the rest escape or, perhaps, fail to?

Thanks for reading and please let me know your thoughts on The Promised Neverland 020-022 in the comments section below!

The Promised Neverland is published weekly in Shonen Jump. The first few (001-003) chapters can be read for free via Viz.com

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