Even my significantly lowered expectations couldn’t make me like episode 2 of Deep Insanity: The Lost Child. While episode one felt a bit lost and like it was trying to just kind of move us to the point where Daniel was embedded in his team even if that came at the expense of atmosphere or world building, episode 2 just feels like it hasn’t got a clue what kind of story this actually wants to be. Or it does but it is just too inept to tell it.
What is Deep Insanity actually trying to be?
With the Randolph Syndrome mentioned once but otherwise completely unrelated to the episode and so the notion of a creeping illness more or less side-lined, episode 2 of Deep Insanity has Daniel stuff up a mission (more likely due to the fact that still no-one has provided anything resembling training) and then because his team’s Sanity Anchor blows her stack at him and asks him what he is good for he spends most of the episode wandering around asking other people what they are good for and poking at old wounds.
In a story where the characters had been better established or the protagonist had any character outside of being a cardboard cut-out that kind of walks along and occasionally mumbles sorry perhaps this could have been an interesting character driven episode where we learned more insights about the team of heroes we were following.
Deep Insanity is not that story.
Instead we get wooden dialogue and unnatural exchanges leading up to the heavy handed discovery that the Sanity Anchor is bitter because she couldn’t become a Sleeper and so naturally is taking out her frustrations on the new kid. Turns out she decided to be a Sleeper after her Idol career was critically derailed and becoming a Sleeper was another chance for her to grab some fame except she didn’t qualify for the role due to incompatibility or some such nonsense that is also yet to be explained.
And yes, I do get they told us Daniel, our dull-as-dishwater main character was able to enter Asylum because he was compatible but what that means and what makes him compatible, as well as what happens if you enter Asylum when you aren’t, is all kind of vague.
Naturally, the episode of Deep Insanity takes us full circle and the team go back to the same spot to fight the monster from the start of the episode and this time Daniel doesn’t stuff it up. That counts as character growth, right? I mean, he didn’t actually train or learn anything more about the mission but somehow he is now working out as part of the team and it is all good.
Just in case that wasn’t ridiculous enough to make your eyes roll right out of your head, Daniel is then summoned to the leader of their team who so far has simply sat and glowered at things and she asks him to take on a mission that will give him a chance to be a hero. It’s all ‘dum, dum, dum…’ and episode end.
Sorry, Deep Insanity is one of those monumentally stupid stories that seems to think it is somehow deeper than it is and so far I’ve more or less tried to ignore the stupidity to pick out what little world building or characterisation they’ve given us but it is paper thin and held together only because the story doesn’t dare look at any one point long enough for people to realise how threadbare this plot is so far. Sure they might go back and build on some of these points and fill in the gaps but that won’t change how lame the characters have been or how disjointed these first two episodes have felt.
I’m still curious about where Deep Insanity intends to go and I’d like it to get better, but I’ll probably only give it another couple of episodes and if I’m still finding it this ridiculous I’ll probably move on.
Images from: Deep Insanity: The Lost Child. Dir. S. Oonuma. Silver Link. 2021
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