The Promised Neverland Vol. 8 Review 1Title: The Promised Neverland Vol. 8
Author: Kaiu Shirai (Story), Posuka Demizu (Art)
Publisher: Viz Media
Language: English
Format: Paperback
Pages: 192
Genre: Horror, Drama
Publication Date: February 5, 2019

The Story

The Promised Neverland Vol. 8 sees Emma, Ray, and our nameless guide fending off the demons. The man hides and lets Emma and Ray deal with them on their own. They formulate a great plan and escape but when they let their guard down, Emma is suddenly kidnapped by the Poachers. It appears it was the man’s plan all along to lure them close to Goldy Pond and let the Poachers take one of them. Satisfied that Emma will, most likely, die… the man swears not to harm any others. Ray won’t have any of that and decides that he’s going to Goldy Pond to rescue Emma no matter what the cost.

Meanwhile, Emma finds herself at Goldy Pond and the truth about that area is revealed: it is a secret hunting grounds for the demons. Children are not always used for the Gupna ritual and are, instead, shipped to Goldy Pond where a group of eccentric demons hunt them for sport, unbeknownst to the rest of the world. If word got out, it would violate the treaty with the human side of the world. There, Emma is thrown into a game of survival where she meets Violet, a girl who finds her optimism rather annoying.

Hello, female Ray!

The rules are simple. The music plays… you’re hunted until the music plays again, and then you wait three days for the next hunt. Once the hunt is over, Violet takes Emma to their base of operations and introduces her to a bunch of kids who were shipped there. However, there’s one more person she wants Emma to meet. Here, we are introduced to Lukas, the only adult who has survived the hunts for 13 years. Together with Emma, he wants to abolish the hunting ground but most-importantly, he values Emma because she has the key to William Minerva’s door!

I’m getting a lot of “Attack on Titan” vibes here. It’s like the question of “What’s in the basement at Eren’s house?” all over again. It also raises the question of why did William Minerva hide a clue for them in the middle of a demon hunting ground? This is turning into an interesting arc because it combines the survival aspect of leaving the farm while reproducing the same kind of feeling of still being on the farm itself. I like how they were able to replicate the same kind of drama the series started out with under a new setting with a new pretense. Also, tons of new characters even though all seem like cannon fodder… for now.

Characters

First up, we got a little bit of development on the nameless man. We learn how his angst is brought upon by knowing his friends all sacrificed themselves so he could escape and live on. I predicted that his backstory would have some sort of outcome like this and I’m sad to see that it wasn’t a little more unique. Now that they introduced Lukas into the entire mix, it’s all too predictable from here on out. Ray and Nameless will break into Goldy Pond. Nameless will run into Lukas, his male tsundere shell will get broken, and he’ll become some sort of respectable good guy.

If you really want to shock me, kill Nameless in front of Lukas right after the two of them meet back up after 13 years! Talk about a powerful moment! Sadly, I can’t see anything like that happening, though.

I called Violet the female Ray because the two of them are eerily similar. Well, not the way Ray is now but the way Ray was when we were first introduced to him in the beginning of the series. Violet is a realist who finds Emma’s optimism annoying. Emma even poked fun at that by saying she’s heard that before. I guess someone really missed Ray’s original character and decided to carry forward with it through someone else. How long until Violet actually turns out to be a Ray clone? Not long seeing how she’s already acting more civilized after the hunting party came to an end.

I won’t bother mentioning the other characters because we just got introduced to them and know nothing about them other than the fact that they all know the secret of the world and are all from the same farm. Hopefully, they’ll become more important as the story moves forward.

Final Thoughts

Things certainly got interesting. One of the problems I felt this series was going to have would be the ability to keep the magic alive from the original premise of the book. Heck, we’re here on Volume 8 and it’s like we’re already experiencing a whole new story. I thought we would still be at Grace Field House with the ultimate goal being to escape but alas we’re on a completely new adventure. Still, Phil and the others are still back there so we will eventually return to where it all began. It also makes you wonder what will happen if Emma and the others make it to the human world. Once the treaty gets broken, will there be a final war between the humans and the demons? I can’t see that being the stopping point for this series. So many questions but I love how this series continues to make you think.

Also, one of my theories just got some fuel added to its fire. The theory that Norman is still alive. Now that it’s known that you don’t necessarily go through the Gupna ritual when you get shipped out means that Norman could have gotten shipped to Goldy Pond or a similar hunting ground. Who says that there is only one of these secret places? We still don’t have confirmation that Norman was killed through the ritual as we saw with Conny and Sister Krone. With this new information, I’m willing to bet Norman is there somewhere. They only told Emma she was the only one from Grace Field but if you think like Norman, it would be advantageous for him NOT to say where he’s from. Remember, Emma told Theo to tell the demons she was from Grace Field knowing her own value would make her a target. Why would Norman do that and risk being the primary target?

That’s how I would write it if I ever wanted to pull a swerve! Then again, Norman could be as dead as Julius Caesar and I could be just sitting here overthinking everything. Until I’m proven otherwise, I’m not going to let this theory go. Especially after my theory of Isabella being one of their mothers came true!

Onward to volume 9!

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This item was provided for review by VIZ Media

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.