I hope everyone had a fantastic week! This week’s weather was just as crazy where I live. We finally had real Spring weather with one day in the 70’s and then it was followed by severe thunderstorms, strong winds, and torrential rain. So yay Spring! At least Winter is the past…hopefully. I’m ready for some nice weather, sunshine, and the end to seasonal depression. On the website, we had another great week! Last Sunday I published a Weekly Blog all about Writing/Talking About Myself and my efforts to get hired. (Update on that, I have an interview next week for an internship!) I added to my Six-Word Memoirs on Wednesday and on Friday I revisited the Dungeons and Dragons inspired world with an update on Juniper in The Ollick Forest. Make sure you read Part 1 before Friday and then read Part 2 when it comes out this upcoming Friday. If you haven’t read any of my D&D inspired stories, you can find them under the Writing Prompts category. Also they are listed underneath the most recent D&D story, so you can get caught up that way. It’s one of my most favorite series to write and I hope that you enjoy reading it as well.
Enough about the website. The other thing I did this week was get back into Anime thanks to Netflix. I have access to Crunchyroll, but my internet is not very fast, so videos take forever to load when I use it to watch Anime. However, Netflix allows me to watch Anime without any problems. Anyway, one of the series I watched was Children of the Whales. Now I’m going to talk about this series in detail in a lot of detail going forward, so if you haven’t seen it, I advise you to go watch it on Netflix if you’re interested. Here is the Children of the Whales trailer if you want to watch that and get a feel of what the show is like before you commit to it. What I’ll say without giving away too much is that The Children of the Whales has a really awesome setting with some interesting characters. There is a lot of different subplots going on and mysteries to be solved along the way. There is love, action, comedy, and magic as well as some anime cliches. They set up an interesting world with a lot of lore, but also leave you wanting more at the end of the season. It’s a good show that sets up an awesome premise for season two. Now I don’t know if there actually will be a season two, but this is a Netflix exclusive and Netflix was been in talks surrounding Anime and being a serious Anime platform, so my guess is that Netflix will bring this show back for at least a second season. So there’s a general summary of Children of the Whales. If that sounds intersting to you and you have Netflix, I say you give it a shot and then come back to read the rest of this Weekly Blog!
Again, spoilers ahead for this show! Proceed with caution.
The Children of the Whales focuses on a young boy named Chakuro who lives with about 500 individuals on a large, moving island that floats in a sea of sand. This island is called The Mud Whale and it’s home to a society made up of “Marked” and “Unmarked” individuals. Chakuro is a part of the “Marked” population which can use magic called “thymia” to make objects move. However the ability to use this magic comes with the cost of a much shorter lifespan compared to the Unmarked population. Chakuro is a scribe who writes down the history of The Mud Whale and details his life on the moving island. The everyday life of the people of The Mud Whale is interrupted when another island is discovered. A search party is sent out with a handful of “marked” people including Chakuro. Once on the island, Chakuro stumbles upon a girl with darker skin who can also use “thymia.” The girl attacks Chakuro trying to kill him, but fails because she is too weak and exhausted. The girl is taken back to The Mud Whale and it is discovered by the governing council that the girl is from an empire connected from The Mud Whale’s past.
The story really picks up when a battleship/island controlled by the same empire shows up and attacks The Mud Whale killing many of the citizens on the island. The rest of the Mud Whale citizens then must come together and use their “thymia” to put together a counterattack on the battleship. It also turns out that The Mud Whale is actually a ship called Failana which was used to imprison Chakuro and past generations of people. The Failana has a magical core called that gives the marked their powers but at the cost of their lifeforce. Other ships also have a magical core, but this core steals the citizens emotions instead of the lifeforce. This creates a rift where the citizens of Failana keep their emotions, but the rest of the empire are emotionless. Apparently the empire exiled the citizens of the Mud Whale because of their strong emotions, but recently the empire changed their mind and has decided to kill off all of the people living on the Mud Whale. That gives you some spoilers, but there is still a lot of different stuff going on. Plenty of characters that I haven’t talked about and interesting customs that help fill out the deep lore of this Anime.
So what do I think of Children of the Whales. Well you might think that I’m doing a Weekly Blog about it because I like it so much. It’s not really that simple. It’s actually a mixed bag for me. Overall I would say that I liked it and enjoyed it; although, it’s not a perfect Anime at all. Some things I really enjoyed about it other than the cool world the story takes place in is the constant fight over emotions. The citizens of the Mud Whale have their emotions but are taught to keep them in and suppress things like sadness and anger. They are taught that their thymia is only supposed to be used to help people and not attack people. These tenants separate them from the empire. The members of the empire no longer have their emotions and think of them as negative. The girl from the island, named Lykos, even says that she learned that Falania was a place where savages lived and that the citizens were filled with hate and grief. She was taught that emotions are evil. Contrast the emotional people of Falania with the empire. They are supposed to be emotionless, but instead take it to the other extreme where they are heartless killers and do not feel remorse for their actions. Plus the emotionless of the empire is supposed to mean an end to all their problems, but really the empire is still full of their own issues. In the end of the season, it seems like the people of The Mud Whale seem to embrace their emotions as well as set a course for the outside world. The world comes crashing down upon them and now they must navigate this new world both literally and figuratively.
Now Children of the Whales is pretty good, but it has some flaws and at times it relies on Anime tropes instead of just thriving on its own. It does a really good job of giving us detail to it lore and giving us interesting characters, but at times it seems like the plot kind of falls flat. I haven’t seen a ton of Anime, but the Anime I have watched seems to be more well-rounded. In the end I think that Childen of the Whales sets up something really interesting but doesn’t really do much with it. It’s like 90% there and I know it’s kind of harsh to judge this Anime for the 10% it missed, but it has such an amazing premise and great potential that it never lives up to. Again it has some great characters, a world full of interesting lore, and a basic war plot. However this does make me excited for a season two set in this world. Hopefully Netflix can take this world and do something interesting with it. Maybe it will improve going forward or maybe it will continue to live in the middle ground. I don’t know. I’m hoping for the best going forward and I feel like it would be a real shame if Netflix didn’t bring this back for another season. I mean it did end on a cliffhanger, but I know other great Anime and TV shows don’t get second seasons, even if people love them.
So have you seen Children of the Whales? What were your thoughts on the series? I’d love to hear your thoughts both positive and negative down in the comments. If you liked this Weekly Blog feel free to give it a like or leave a comment letting me know if you liked it. I really appreciate all the support you give me in the form of views, likes, comments, and shares. Also you can follow the website to make sure you see all the stuff I publish on WordPress. If you really like this Weekly Blog, make sure you go read the other things on my website. There’s over 200 different pieces on the website so I’m sure you can find something you like on here.
Thank you again for all your support and I hope you have a wonderful week!
Header Photo Credit to Inquisitr.com’s article about Children of the Whales Season 2