The Promised Neverland 2nd Season Episode 3

The Promised Neverland 2nd Season Episode 3

Demon Evolution

You may have missed it, but in The Promised Neverland 2nd Season episode 3, Mujika mentions that the demons have evolved and diversified over the past 1,000 years. Ignoring the fact that things don’t tend to evolve to those extremes that quickly, this is an interesting comment.

As we learned from Sonju in the previous episode, the split in the human and demon worlds also happened 1,000 years ago. Do you see where I’m going with this? Why would Mujika measure the evolution of demons from that specific point in time? Probably because the demons were once humans.

If true, this would mean that the demons originated from cannibalistic humans. While interesting, I do think that this theory has one major flaw. How is it that so many humans suddenly became cannibals? If we’re to believe Sonju, there was a war that resulted in the world (metaphorically) splitting into two.

Mujika from the anime series The Promised Neverland 2nd Season
Mujika

So, this got me thinking. Are there any other theories that could make sense given what Mujika said? If we take some other information from the episode — which I’ll cover in due time — into consideration, I think there is. What if there isn’t another side of the world dominated by humans?

In this scenario, I’m thinking that there was some kind of cataclysmic event 1,000 years ago that forced humans to adopt cannibalism. They then rounded up some of their kin to keep as livestock so that their supply wouldn’t run out forcing them to eat their friends. These livestock humans remained relatively unchanged while the cannibals evolved into their new niche.

Of course, this would also mean that there’s no other world for the children to escape to. After all, Sonju said that he’d never seen it and that he’d never heard of anyone getting there.

Free-Range Humans

Speaking of Sonju, his dark side was finally revealed. In my review of the first episode, I did mention that Sonju and Mujika might not necessarily be “good.” Instead, I said that while they don’t eat humans, they may be “evil” in some other way.

Well, now we know that while Sonju doesn’t eat humans right now, he’s not opposed to the idea. In fact, he looks forward to a day when he can eat them. Mujika, on the other hand, does seem to be truly “good.” She mentions reporting the humans to the other demons, but she seems to be against this idea as well as the idea of eating humans altogether.

I’m interested in learning more about Sonju’s and Mujika’s past. How did they meet? Is Mujika younger than Sonju as she seems to be? Which one of them introduced the other to their religion? As for that last point, I think it could go either way. Maybe Sonju taught Mujika and she took the teachings more to heart than him. Or, maybe Mujika “converted” Sonju somehow.

Sonju from the anime series The Promised Neverland 2nd Season
Sonju

Either way, the big reveal here is that Sonju isn’t against eating humans — he’s against eating farm-grown humans. If there are wild humans for him to hunt, then they’re fair game as far as he’s concerned. And it’s to this end that he helped the children.

Sonju wants the children to survive, breed, and create a thriving population of “wild” humans for him to hunt. However, this means we have to question why their religion specifies that they can only eat wild things and not farm-grown humans.

If we assume that my cataclysm theory is correct, then perhaps this religion was started by humans who thrived in the anarchy following the fall of humanity. Growing food at a farm would go against this belief, which is why Sonju lives in the wilderness and prefers to hunt.

It may very well be that their religion bars them from farm-grown foods. But if humans are the only farm-grown food the demons consume, the teachings may have eventually become understood to mean no eating humans.

The Bunker

As soon as the children entered the bunker and began walking down the main corridor, I knew there was something off about the place. And once the secret room and passage behind the piano were discovered, I really knew that there was something wrong.

The room with “HELP” scratched into the wall and written in blood only confirmed those thoughts.

Alright, so what’s the deal with the bunker? To me, it looks to be set up suspiciously like the farm. My guess is that it was made by the same person. And if we’re assuming that Mr. Minerva is a good guy who’s going to help the children, then that would mean he co-opted the bunker for his own use.

Mr. Minerva's bunker from the anime series The Promised Neverland 2nd Season
Mr. Minerva’s bunker

Something tells me that Mr. Minerva isn’t who the children think he is. There’s not really any evidence for this, but I’m going to go on record saying that he’s a demon. And more than that, he’s not a good demon who wants to help the children.

I think the circumstantial evidence is quite persuasive, though. Think about how the children got to where they are now. They had to escape the farm, evade pursuers, learn how to survive in the outside world, and figure out how to solve the puzzles of the pen. All of that takes some serious intelligence.

And what do we know the demons like to eat? The brains of intelligent children. The smarter the child, the more delectable brain is. So, what if everything the children have done to get to this point was all just a test set up by Mr. Minerva to find the highest grade brains?

Oh, and let’s not forget that his last name is Minerva. Minerva is the Roman goddess of wisdom and knowledge and is often represented by an owl — the symbol Mr. Minerva uses to identify himself.

Conclusion

What do you think of this episode of The Promised Neverland 2nd Season? Were the demons once humans? How do you think Mujika and Sonju met? And what do you think about my theory regarding Mr. Minerva? Let me know in the comments.

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My review of the next episode is available here.

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6 Replies to “The Promised Neverland 2nd Season Episode 3”

  1. this was completely different from the manga, where are Yuugo??? they have removed the best character. They are going anime original from here huh? I feel like they are going to ruin everything

    1. Before it began airing I heard that this season would be covering an anime original arc, so I guess that starts now.

  2. I think some of your theories are based on either false assumptions or incorrect interpretations of some of he dialogue. Especially the lore reveals/exposition from episode 2 of this season.

    It’s actually something I’ve been thinking about lately when it comes to writing fantasy and science fiction stories. With fantasy and sci-fi you are basically building a world and you have to explain how that world works to the audience.

    Sometimes you can just have an omniscient narrator explain things to the audience. However that doesn’t always work if you want to tell a story from a character’s point of view where the character knows as little about the world as the audience does. Characters such as Emma and Subaru from Re:Zero. We the audience are supposed to be learning about the world as those characters do.

    That’s where the catch comes in that trips up writers. There are times in a fantasy or sci-fi story where the writer wants to dump some exposition/lore on the audience as well as their main character. However characters in stories can and do lie. So how is the audience supposed to know what information the writer wants them to take at face value? Re:Zero can be a particularly bad offender where characters lie to Subaru giving him false information that we the audience have to grapple with. Take Beatrice claiming that she was just doing what her Gospel said only to find out later that it was blank. I think you can get away with this if the falsehoods are revealed not too much later. If you leave it too long the audience can feel like the rug has been pulled out from under them and they have no clue what’s going on or what the story was all about.

    This is my roundabout way of saying that I think you’ve taken some lore dumps that were supposed to help the audience and Emma understand the nature of the world Emma is in as suspect when they were supposed to be taken at face value.

    My understanding of what Sonju told Emma was that the world was literally split in two. He says that a 1000 years ago the Earth was much more vast than it is now. The world has gotten smaller because it was split in two. At least that’s my interpretation.

    I’ve been reading the manga chapters that have already been covered by the anime so I don’t know what’s coming down the line but there was one line of dialogue that was cut between Sonju and Mujika. When Sonju tells Mujika that he wants to be able to hunt humans he actually says he wants to hunt them again. Basically he was around and hunting humans before the world was split in two. Because he doesn’t believe in eating farmed animals he refuses to eat humans even though he has a taste for them. He’s gone a 1,000 years without being able to eat his favourite food. He also tells Mujika she wouldn’t understand because she’s never eaten human flesh. Obviously Mujika is a lot younger than Sonju and never got the taste for human flesh that he did.

    1. If the world was literally split in half, then that’s going to be pretty difficult to reconcile I think. I would need a proper explanation of how it happened. I don’t think I would be able to suspend my disbelief otherwise. Also, that would make getting to the human half near impossible. Not that I think the children are going to make it there regardless. Even if there is a human half of the world, I think the series is going to end with the children establishing a human settlement on the demon half.

      Also, as for Sonju’s story about the world being split in half, I don’t necessarily think he was lying. I mentioned that he claims never to have seen the other side, so therefore it may not actually exist — implying that as far as he knows it does, but he isn’t sure. However, upon further reflection, referring to not knowing anyone who made it to the other side could also be metaphorical if we assume the split was metaphorical. Maybe he meant that once humans and demons diverged, nobody has ever bridged the gap between them again.

      So, yeah, I’m not suspicious about Sonju because I think he’s lying. My suspicion came from him potentially being an unreliable source of information on the subject since he admits to not having seen any of it firsthand.

      1. I get what you’re saying about suspending your disbelief. I was thinking along those lines as well. Like if the “demons” have the power to split the world into two why would they need to make a treaty with humans?

        Then I remembered that for years after season one of Attack on Titan I would complain to my brother that it made no sense that humans were able to build such giant walls to keep Titans out. In season one they kept making a point of saying that the last survivors of humanity were behind the walls and that the Titans were such an overwhelming unstoppable threat that all humanity could do is retreat from them. Yet somehow humanity had time to build these gigantic walls?

        There was one thing from season one of the Promised Neverland that was sort of glossed over in contrast to the manga. It was there in the background but a lot of the dialogue was shortened. When the kids were planning their escape from the farm they spent time speculating about what the world was like outside for which they had three data points. 1) The calendar in their home said the year was 2046. 2) All the materials in the house apart from the calendar that had a date on them such as books with their publication date were dated 2015. 3) Demons existed in the outside world yet none of their reading material even hinted at the demon’s existence.

        Basically this lead the kids to speculate that sometime after 2015 something happened and demons showed up. That’s why they asked Sonju what happened 30 years ago. To which Sonju replied that the world has been the same for the last 1000 years.

        It’s pretty clear that Sonju was around before the world was split because he remembers hunting humans and hasn’t been able to do so since the treaty between humans and demons that lead to the establishment of the farms. When the kids ask him if the year is really 2046 he acknowledges that as being accurate according to at least one human calendar he was familiar with. Throughout history different cultures have kept different calendars but if the year is 2046 according to the christian calendar then the treaty and splitting of the world occurred in roughly 1046.

        Assuming Sonju didn’t lie about anything then there is only one thing he told the kids that may not be entirely accurate and even Sonju acknowledged that. Sonju said no-one had crossed between the demon and human worlds in 1000 years. When he was challenged on that he acknowledged that was something he’d only heard and couldn’t be sure of.

        If the year really is 2046 by our calendar then things like the books from 2015 that the children had access to must have crossed between the human and demon worlds.

        The only other possibility assuming Sonju wasn’t lying is that this is the very distant future after a new calendar was started.

        1. You do raise a good point regarding the calendar. My only explanation would be that the year isn’t really 2046 and that it’s actually 3046. I’m not sure how that 1,000-year discrepancy would be explained. But I think that’s a more plausible answer than to think that books somehow crossed from the human world into the demon world and made it to the farm. This then assumes that the books are really from 2015 before the demons were around.

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