A solid post-apocalyptic setup and the potential for plenty more seasons give 7Seeds some long-term promise, although time will tell how fans take to it.
Adapting a long-running and beloved manga series with legions of fans is always a tricky prospect, but it’s a surefire way of enticing a guaranteed audience for at least a first season. That seems to be the strategy with 7Seeds, which debuted its full 12-episode first season on Netflix today in an already-crowded market. Adapted from Yumi Tamura’s same-named series published across 16 years, there’s a treasure trove of material to be mined here, providing that fans of the material are okay with the series.
They should be, but as a newcomer to the story, I’m not the best person to judge. As a fusion of anime aesthetics and sensibilities with sci-fi story trappings, though, to me, there’s a lot to like here, and a lot of potential intrigue to look forward to. Following a group of youngsters waking from a government-sponsored cryogenic freeze to a world demolished by a meteor impact, it’s a coming-of-age story with a dystopian twist, and those things tend to do well.
The protagonist, Natsu, is among a handful of others who awaken on a mysterious island, shepherded by an enigmatic guide. The plot particulars are sped through perhaps a little too hastily, but it’s in service of getting straight into the Lost-reminiscent setup, as the so-called Team Summer B attempt to adapt to their new environment while uncovering the truth of their lost time and fending off beasties created by the devastated climate.
Most of 7Seeds Season 1 is set up; a lot of it heavy-handed. But the potential for the story to continue is there, and some smartly deployed twists help to toy with expectations. As things develop, the pace becomes more measured, the group dynamics better establish themselves, and the mystery continues to deepen. There’s definitely something worth watching here, just so long as the show’s audience is willing to put up with its uninspired visuals, lackluster animation, and predictably horrendous English dub. As a proof-of-concept, though, I think 7Seeds works, and suggests a potentially bright future for Netflix’s latest anime series.