To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts

To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts

To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts anime series cover art
To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts

Overview

To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts (Katsute Kami Datta Kemono-tachi e / かつて神だった獣たちへ) wasn’t an anime series I had high hopes for when I initially started watching it. However, there were some things it had going for it from the start.

Namely, it’s animated by MAPPA studios and is an adaptation of a manga, not a light novel. MAPPA has made some pretty decent anime recently, including Kakegurui and Dororo, and is also the studio behind one of my favorite movies, In This Corner of the World.

And the fact that the source material for this series isn’t a light novel, while not too important, is still reassuring. Sure, there are plenty of good anime which are light novel adaptations, but at the same time basically anyone can have a light novel published so there’s a lot of trash too.

The basic premise of To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts is that super humans known as the Incarnates were created to be used as weapons during a war. However, the Incarnates slowly lost their humanity, and now that the war is over they essentially roam the land as monsters.

But before disbanding, the leader of the Incarnates made a promise than those who lose their humanity will be killed by their own. He now travels around the country seeking out his fellow Incarnates and putting them down while they still have some sense of who they are left.

It’s actually a pretty good plot, but unfortunately the execution isn’t all there. At times this series is very episodic, and some of those episodes almost feel like filler. And, due to the nature of the Incarnates, this is one series that I think could benefit from high-level animation — which it doesn’t have.

Characters

The protagonist of the series is a teenage girl by the name of Nancy Schaal Bancroft, or just Schaal for short. Schaal’s adoptive father was one of the Incarnates who is killed before he can lose his sense of self. After witnessing his murder, Schaal sets off on a journey to hunt down the man responsible.

Schaal Bancroft holding a rifle from the anime series To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts
Schaal Bancroft holding a rifle

Hank Henriette is the former leader of the Incarnates squad who has taken it upon himself to kill his former comrades. Each of the Incarnates are in varying states of humanity, with Hank being one of the most human ones remaining. He is the Werewolf Incarnate and can turn into his beast form at night.

Cain Madhouse is the antagonist of the series and foil character to Hank. When the war was coming to a close and it was being realized that the Incarnates had no place in a peaceful society, Cain was the one who let them loose upon the world. He is the Vampire Incarnate.

Liza Runecastle is a member of the military and works alongside Hank to track down the surviving Incarnates. She seems to specialize in information gathering and as such doesn’t tend to play a role on the front lines when conflict arises.

The last of the major characters is Claude Withers, the leader of the Incarnate Extermination Unit and son of the king. As we learn, his brother is one of the incarnates, which is why he’s so invested in stopping their rampage. He also views Hank as an enemy despite them sharing the same goal and Liza working with both of them.

Incarnates

While I won’t be going through all of the other incarnates in this section, I will be going over those which have been revealed so far. Each Incarnate takes the form of a mythological creature, and takes on whatever special abilities that creature is said to have had.

The Incarnates from the anime series To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts
The Incarnates

Excluding Hank and Cain, these are all the incarnates which have been officially revealed in season one of To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts:

  • Arthur Allston (Behemoth) – Arthur takes the form of a mountain-sized monster with skin that heals twice as thick wherever he receives an injury.
  • Beatrice (Siren) – Beatrice looks like a cross between a mermaid and a harpy. She has the ability to knock out anyone around her with the sound of her voice.
  • Christopher Keynes (Gargoyle) – Christopher is able to fly due to a pair of wings on his back. His skin is also covered in a rocky exterior, providing him with physical protection.
  • Daniel Price (Spriggan) – Daniel’s only real power seems to be the ability to transform into a decently sized giant (Spriggan).
  • Elizabeth Weezer (Arachne) – Elizabeth is what I like to call a backwards Arachne. Rather than the human part being on the front of the spider — like Rachnera — Elizabeth’s human torso extends from the abdomen.
  • John William Bancroft (Nidhogg) – John is Schaal’s adoptive father. A Nidhogg is basically a dragon from Norse mythology.
  • Miles Byron (Centaur) – Miles is a Centaur who specializes at hunting his opponents with his bow.
  • Roy (Garmr) – Roy is essentially a “dark” version of Hank. A Garmr is a Norse version of a Werewolf.
  • Theodore Sherman (Minotaur) – Theodore wields a large ax in combat. Due to the myth involving the Minotaur and the labyrinth, Theodore excels at creating maze-like defensive structures.
  • Abi (Hydra) – Abi is the first incarnate we see lose his humanity. He has multiple snake heads and can breath poisonous gas.

Conclusion

To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts is a 6/10. As I mentioned at the start of this review, it has a good premise, but doesn’t execute on it as well as it could have. Even so, I believe this series is going to have a second season, and when it does come out, I’ll be watching it.

As was the case for many of the series this season, To the Abandoned Sacred Beasts also had both a good OP and good ED. Personally, I prefer the OP of this series over the ED.

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