dvorak new world symphony, eerily modified, with FUCKING ELECTRIC GUITAR SOLO!!!!!
I'm not one to like to prejudge things, or give in too much of a definitive judgement before I've seen something in it's entirety (or at least majority), so what I'm about to say is unusual for me and therefore testament to the magnitude of the impression I got from a single episode:
From The New World appears like it's going to be something truly great; the 'appears once every few years' kind of great, or the 'joins the ranks with a select few of my favorites' great. Why? Well, it just succeeds on a lot of levels.
The animation is great, especially during the fable section (that monster was COOL! It had a liquid and gaseous quality to it, warping spastically but fluidly as it just kind of slid around very rapidly, leaking trails of pyretic ooze.).
The music is awesome, especially in the opening credits section, where a choir sings a hauntingly altered version of Dvorak's 9th "new world" symphony (I see what they did there lol), over which soars a breakneck electric guitar solo.
From a story perspective, it seems like interesting things are in store. I was amazed by how much the show told us about the setting, and how it didn't have to do it explicitly. I particularly liked she school kids talking about their mostly inscrutible to us subjects. In a society run by the 'gravity' and not mechanical technology as current humans understand it, we don't share too much context with them, so what they're doing is a bit opaque, but you can figure a little bit of it out, and that's what's so cool.
Another thing that struck me was the shot composition. The director/storyboard artist knew what they were doing in a way that most creators of visual media do not. The best example was probably in the introduction, during the part where the 'camera' is spastically going in and out of focus (maybe a little TOO spastically but I digress), there is a certain shot in which we see a school classroom, probably middle school or high school. You see the setting sun through the window, and see how there are few students in the classroom, indicating that school is over and there are just a few people left over there. Suddenly, two of the students are hit by an invisibe blast and just [expletive] disintigrate. The camera cuts before we even get to see anyone's reaction to this, emphasizing how fast things go wrong when they do. The best part about it was the subtlety of how it was shot; the shot didn't seem like it was showing that happen, it was more like it was showing that place, in which that thing happened, if you understand what I'm saying as the difference.
The bottom line is, this show has a certain nuanced showmanship about it that, whether or not it turns out to be ultimately good (though I think it probably will be), it seems to be wanting to be and deserving to be the subject of serious criticism and thought, which is rare for a story in any medium.
As for the sealing of the powers, what i think happened was after bad things started happening in modern times because this 'gravity' phenomenon started to manifest, a hasty defense mechanism was created, in which once the ability manifested in a child, it was sealed and the child educated about how to use and control it, and this ritual over time became entrenched in the culture but people forgot the reason behind it. as for the cat getting rid of children who do not have the ability, or who have it weakly, either there's some sinister eugenics type of thing going on or in the new world, the power is needed to defend against the flora and fauna of the new earth which have this ability as well.