Ominous Appearances Abound This Week in Anime

Episode 5 coverage for Cells at Work, The Promised Neverland and Cells at Work: Code Black.

Fortunately we didn’t have a complete technology fail this week and we actually have some episode images, however it has been busy, busy, busy around here. Which has made me realise that there are good kinds of busy where lots is happening but it feels like we’re progressing forward compared to the bad kind of busy where you mostly just feel like you are running around and around on a treadmill and getting absolutely nowhere for it. This week has definitely been the good kind of busy.

That said, all three shows that I am following seemed to step things up in episode 5 and I am very excited to discuss them.

The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 5

So we have a time skip right at the start of the episode.

I guess we won’t find out how the kids evaded the monster at the end of episode 4 or whether they’ve been pursued or whatnot in the intervening time. Instead we’ll catch up with them as they’ve settled into a run down church and seem to be scavenging from a local town and the wilderness to stay alive. There’s a fair effort at ‘humanising’ the demons here as we see that the demons of the town are also struggling to make ends meet and while they might be aiming to eat the kids should they find them they just want to protect their families as well.

The Promised Neverland Season 2 Episode 5 - the demons looking for the kids.
Seriously, they might eat kids should they manage to get a hold of one but they aren’t just mindless killers.

Emma is also at her most disheartened during this episode feeling responsible for leading the kids into this situation where they are barely hanging on. It was lovely to see Ray and the others stepping up even if their renewed focus was short-lived after a disastrous scavenging expedition leaves them in a dire situation.

It must be the time for old faces to re-emerge because the end of this episode drops in a familiar face that I was kind of expecting to see again, but not one week after seeing Isabella. Of course, in true The Promised Neverland style this happens in the last moments of the episode and we’ll have to wait to next week to find out the how and why as well as to find out whether the other kids are safe or not.

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Cells at Work!! Season 2 Episode 5

Continuing on with the story of the ordinary cell trying to help out the good bacteria, this week has the body invaded by a fairly nasty influenza virus and initially the immune cells just can’t seem to beat it. There’s a lot of action in this episode and again the focus is very much on White Blood Cell and a few other immune cells as well as the ordinary cell introduced last week. They didn’t even throw in a token Red Blood Cell appearance this week.

Influenza - Cells at Work Season 2 Episode 5
Okay, these guys are creeping me out.

However, in my last episode discussion, I mentioned the peak of season one where they did a double episode around cancer and how this season hadn’t even come close. The end of this episode most definitely takes a turn to this more serious issue. It would be nice if season 2 could have found its own way to really kick the drama into gear, but revisiting such a solid story from the first season could work so I’m definitely more interested in Cells at Work Season 2 right now than I really have been since it started.

As for the good bacteria, well they remained ridiculously cute throughout and all but one are now where they belong. I’m not entirely certain about the analogy of activating immune cells by using embarrassing polaroid’s of them, but actually this episode largely worked, was quite fun, and the ending most definitely drew me in for watching more.

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Cells at Work! Code Black! Episode 5

Things were bad last week as the White Blood Cells fought a mostly losing battle against a sexually transmitted disease. This week, with so many White Blood Cells convalescing, the protection of the body is largely left up to the Killer T Cells and the pressure mounts quickly until they just boil over.

Cells at Work Code Black Episode 5 - Mobilize Killer T Cells
Bad idea. Just seriously bad.

There’s a lot to unpack in terms of all the things that are going wrong in this body and all the cells are exhausted and on edge as they struggle to do their jobs in increasingly volatile conditions. It is hard not to feel sorry for the various characters whether they are struggling to try or whether they have given up. None of what is happening is their fault but rather the person who owns this body and has really not taken care of it.

This episode hit just the right notes with enough humour to detract from the overall depressing content, and the visuals as the excessive immune response inflamed a section of the body were kind of perfect. In 5 short episodes our Red Blood Cell protagonist has gone from realising his situation is hopeless and wondering what the point is, to being determined to do the best he can, to encouraging others, to episode 5 where we now see him really contemplating the bigger picture and realising that there just may not be anything that can be done. It has been a great character journey and I look forward to what is next.

Red Blood Cell - Cells at Work Code Black Episode 5
You probably don’t want to know.

Wrapping It Up

It’s great when anime manage to deliver entertaining episodes that really make me want the next one and all three of these anime delivered this week. So now it is with a smile that I wait until I sit down to watch episode 6.

Your thoughts?

Images used for review from:

  • The Promised Neverland Season 2. Dir. M Kanbe. Cloverworks. 2021.
  • Cells at Work!! Creator A Shimizu. David Productions. 2021
  • Cells at Work! Code Black. Dir. H Yamamoto. LIDENFILMS. 2021


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