The Promised Neverland Vol. 7 Review

Title: The Promised Neverland Vol. 7
Author: Kaiu Shirai (Story), Posuka Demizu (Art)
Publisher: Viz Media
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 200
Genre: Horror, Drama
Publication Date: December 4, 2018

The Story

The Promised Neverland Vol. 7 picks up when the introduction of the man they find in the underground shelter, although we don’t get to learn his name. Right away, he tells the kids to get out and even pulls a gun on them! He holds Emma hostage and tells them to leave the shelter immediately but Emma plants her fist right between his legs and they end up tying him up. While the man is incapacitated, they search the shelter and learn a bit more about the world but the volume doesn’t go into much detail. They end up finding a letter from William Minerva stating that if they want to live in something beyond just a shelter, to go to new coordinates to a place called Goldy Pond.

Emma and Ray end up formulating a plan which blackmails the man into being their guide; however, the man has no intention of truly helping them. In fact, he’s planning on getting of them killed in order to get them to change their minds about finding Minerva.

The journey to Goldy Pond begins. They make it through the wasteland with ease but run into a man-eater in the forest. The man shoots it but it regenerates and calls for backup! The man relishes in the fact that they have no chance of survival as our volume comes to a close!

Well, that was the info dump that I have been hoping for but things did take an interesting turn. The man’s past, even his name, are withheld and he’s not exactly the type to give up that information. The pacing of the story did slow down a bit with this volume as I predicted as they spent the majority of the time building up our new character. Things only got truly interesting at the end of the volume but it seems that we’ll have to wait to see if they can get themselves out of this situation.

Characters

Our nameless man is the one new character that we get but there is still so much we don’t know about him. We did learn that he is just like Emma and the others in the fact that 13 years ago, he and a group of kids escaped from Glory Bell farm. All of his friends died and he ended up alone at the shelter. There’s still the mystery behind the word Poacher scribbled all over the bedroom wall but he’s not giving up that information easily. His attitude is highly abrasive. It’s very clear that he doesn’t want any sort of human contact but at the same time, he can’t bring himself to kill any of them for an unknown reason. It doesn’t stop him from making threats on their lives.

I suspect that part of his plan is to let the demons kill them off so he doesn’t have to have their deaths on his conscience. Characters like this bother me a bit because they put a lot of effort into building up this mysterious past only to have their reasons/motivations be an extreme letdown. I hope that’s not the case with this character but I’m expecting a whole “You don’t know what it’s like until you’ve actually seen your friends die” moment to explain his reasons for being the way he is. I’ve seen that trope far too many times and his character archetype is the kind that seems like it would use that plot point to explain his personality.

Then again, they could take a darker route and show that he legit went crazy and was the one who killed all of his friends but I highly doubt that’s the case because of the whole Poacher plot point. Sonju mentioned that there have been really rare occasions where demons would steal children from farms. That’s known as poaching. I’m guessing demons found the shelter and started taking his friends one by one. They don’t come back because he probably ended up killing them and it knocked a screw loose because he probably found the armory hidden in the shelter after everyone was killed. Therefore, he blames himself for their deaths.

That’s just my assumption. Based on the clues left throughout this volume and the last, I’m more than willing to bet that happened. Not sure if we’ll see that revealed in Vol. 8 but I have a suspicion Ray and Emma will survive (you know.. because main character plot armor), and that will cause the man to open up to them. It’s almost a bit predictable to a fault. I hope I’m wrong and the series throws us a curveball.

Final Thoughts

While this volume of The Promised Neverland was good, it just didn’t carry with it the mystique that the series has been known for so far. The decision to go to a new point was made rather suddenly and it seemed like even though the pace slowed down, things were still rushed. I would have loved to see them explore the shelter in more detail. It took them a while to do that with Grace Field House and here, we wrapped up a new location in less than a volume. There were huge opportunities to expand the lore of the world even further but they didn’t opt to go that route and I don’t understand why.

Plus, they kind of just wrote off the majority of the characters to solely focus on three of them. I get that a break from all of the characters is needed from time to time but I hope they don’t become afterthoughts in the greater scheme of things.

One thing that bothered me was Emma, herself. She threw the biggest fit when Ray suggested that it just be him, Emma, and Norman to escape Grace Field House. Emma said she wouldn’t leave without her family. They get to the shelter and are willing to go to new coordinates at the drop of a hat, leaving all the people behind she didn’t want to leave behind. Who knows what they will find there and if they do get there, will they even be able to get back? Isn’t that the same as leaving everyone behind? Did they just turn Emma into a hypocrite?

I don’t know. I just find that a bit odd. Hopefully, we get some more sense made out of this in the next couple of volumes.

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About The Author

Josh Piedra

Josh (or J.J. as some have come to call him), is a long-time geek culture enthusiast with a deep passion for anime, manga and Japanese culture. Josh also has a Bachelor of Arts in Game Design and is a creative writer who has created original content for over 20 years! He is also the author of the original English light novel Final Hope.

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