Have you ever wanted to just run away from life, abandon the trials of your day to day existence and start over in a place where your past can’t follow you? Ever been so fed up with yourself that you just want to create a new you in a new place? Join the First Life Do-Over Tour and come join the inhabitants of Nanaki Village to get your chance to begin anew!
In The Lost Village, we follow a cast of misfits from all walks of life who all seek escape, who wish to venture to a mysterious hidden village whose existence has never even been confirmed… a place that promises the opportunity to get a fresh start and freedom from the burdens of our society.
When I say a ‘cast of misfits’, we’re talking in the area of 30 major characters. It can be argued that only 4-5 of them are actually ‘main characters’, but nearly all 30 are critical to the story and the shows tries its best to give the majority of them at least some development. It really does try, but with 12 episodes and 30 characters, you can surely imagine they don’t all measure up… and that’s the problem. We’re expected to care about this entire cast, but there’s not nearly enough time to build up a cast of 30 characters.
That being said, the primary characters – Mitsumune, Masaki and Hayato – are actually quite interesting. They, along with a few of the major characters, actually received a fair bit of spotlight time to grow. If there hadn’t been so many throwaway characters that we were expected to care about, the story of these fascinating characters would’ve had the chance to truly shine… but it was so bogged down with dead weight that it ended up feeling superficial.
Now, that’s not to say the story is bad. It’s actually rather interesting. The series slowly builds suspense over the course of the first few episodes, gradually giving little hints at the reality of this strange village. As the suspense builds you gradually start to figure out bits and pieces of what is going on. My only concern is that there’s never really a moment where the suspense comes to a head… the suspense just kind of dissipates. To make matters worse, none of the events have any real consequences.
Despite its flaws, the story did manage to keep me hooked, mostly through its development of the three mentioned characters above. Their interactions, and their growth over the course of this strange series, went a long way to building something memorable. The surprise reveals of certain aspects of these characters’ backstories help to build a bond between us and the characters. They then proceed to take advantage of that bond through the story’s progression to create moments that do have some real impact.
The truly unfortunate reality of the Lost Village is that it was a show with a fascinating premise, several interesting characters, and some really effective suspense and tension that simply failed to deliver the way it should have. An overwhelming number of characters who were supposed to matter (but didn’t) led to a lot of wasted time, difficulty delivering on the promise of the suspense mentioned above, and an overall lack of consequence.