“An orb was cast into the earth. After metamorphosing into a wolf, it joins a boy on his bleak journey to find his tribe. It learns and evolves transcending death, even when those around it cannot”. This is To You, the Immortal. Not knowing the plot, the characters, or anything about the story but rooting for a new story just for an author’s sake is not a wise choice always, but rest assured as in this particular case your instincts were absolutely correct because To your eternity or some of you might recognize it as To you, the Immortal is a fantastically written, heartfelt story.
To your Eternity, the manga started serialization back in 2016 in Weekly Shonen Magazine. The manga is written and illustrated by Yoshitoki Ōima (A silent voice). A silent voice is a great work of art that impacted its audience with an overall great story and life lessons, however, To your Eternity is an entirely different piece dealing with supernaturalism from the very first page but in the core, it proudly is Yoshitoki Ōima’s work.
“To your Eternity explores what it means to truly be alive and to live absolutely compelling”
– Reverse thieves
The story follows an orb that was sent to earth a millennium ago by an unknown being. The storytelling keeps the immortal entity and the readers in the same shoes and we witness this orb with no consciousness, no emotions, and no feelings whatsoever progressing purposelessly. We follow very soon that it could take on different forms. This orb after taking on the form of moss and wolf eventually winds up turning into a guy named Fushi. Thus, starts his journey into a whole new world, with no understanding of what it means to have a purpose, what this world is? Life is very precious but what happens when it goes to eternity.
To your Eternity tells a story of how an immortal being creates emotions and comes to understand itself through its experiences and sufferings. It keeps you on your toes and always feels fresh. Ōima ‘s work is great when it comes to emotional resonance, though we know what to expect from the upcoming chapter we still find a way to get attached to the characters and not for a single moment it feels repetitive. This aspect of the story proves that how great of a writer Yoshitoki Ōima is.
There are new characters introduced every now and then but the writing makes you feel connected with every single one of them. To your Eternity’s story is powerful enough to elicit a deep emotional impact on the readers like its predecessor. It is on the surface an adventure fantasy series. There is another aspect to this manga, its phenomenal first chapter. It is a fantastic tale that manages to fit so much into just its first chapter that is almost unbelievable.
Analysis (spoilers ahead)
A lot of this series is about following the rise of this immortal being how he can fight stupor, the benevolence that is coiled with his existence. To start with the orb has no sentiments, he hasn’t actualized the idea of human life yet. What he did was instinctively but the first actual emotion it had was companionship. This connection will carry along with him for the time being.
The kindness that this orb witness begins a rhythm this immortal being will pursue. As we move forward in the series this orb travels from place to place and meets new people, sees through generations, and becomes connected to them. Through ages, the orb travels across the earth to learn more about humanity.
The vital subject matter of the manga is about life and living but that is just grooving the surface, it also sells mortality and immortality, existentialism, obsession, kindness, purpose, and loss.
The orb sustains the emotions and attachment to people and things and places and stuff with him every moment. He feels guilt for those who he couldn’t save, those mortal beings. In many ways he is just as powerless as he was when he only had the instinct of wolf. This pathless journey and constant loss of beloved seizes him to resolve to accept that he must so what.
Being an immortal creature the orb is going to outlive everyone he meets and we see him struggle with that revelation. To your Eternity takes this aspect and showcases how tragic incidents, loss really mold a person. Every life form that the orb has ever come in contact with lives within him. He lets them continue to live through him. The ultimate loss for him is the immortal beings known as the knockers who take away these memories.
To your Eternity has the aspect of fantasy, adventure, action, and artwork but it has a lot more to offer from life lessons to self-discovery. It manages to show how much complexity can weave with simple themes and motives. To your Eternity anime adaptation is being aired, you can check it out on Netflix, Crunchyroll.