Sword Art Online II, ep1


*Warning*
The following article has been written by someone who has never seen the anime series Sword Art Online. Never read the visual novels and has infact never played an MMO……and probably doesn’t even know what MMO stands for (seriously don’t bother posting google links ). Also, she may have thrown in some minor spoilers here and there.

Come one come all. The most awaited sequel to the show SAO is here. Fans loved it, critics hated it. The one show that managed to rile the otakus to mass abusive genocide-ish behaviour on the internet. The one show that resulted in more bloodshed on anime forums than the entire homicide count on Attack on Titan. The one show that finally made more sense than .hack.sign./ sign …something….Oh I can never get that name right..

Sword Art Online II

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I haven’t seen the show, so I went into this with zero expectations. And as a first episode I have to say it’s really good.

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“Are these actual movies? Wait, where is Godzilla? ”

The episode starts with a random scene and then a real world date between the heroes of the previous show (because I don’t care about the characters ….yet) There are a almost a gajillion call backs to the previous season. Characters I have never heard of are mentioned time and again just to make fans go ‘ah’. It’s a lot like when the 2009 Star Trek reboot came out. It focused less on itself and more on fan service for those who loved the original show. But, despite the season one pandering, it managed to hold itself out till the end, and even gave minor explanations to the events shown in the beginning of the episode, something a lot of shows are lacking these days. Also, despite certain lacking and exposition scenes, the episode somehow remained interesting throughout.

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“I can’t go back in the game! Last time I couldn’t poop for a month”

But the million dollar question right now is – should A1 pictures forget about all it’s other shows and dedicate all it’s funding and workforce to this show? Because, while the trailer looked mighty good, the only action shot we get in this episode is with a green haired sniper and that too lasted a mere 20sec, at least the good parts. I know, it’s a 25 episode series , they will build up the climax halfway through and it probably won’t get serious at least till episode 4 but I felt it needed more gun gale-ing and fps action….I don’t know….., AOT has made me demanding.

With the criticism SAO received for its perverse material and silly dialogue (yeah some of it is pretty silly), SAO II is in my opinion a bit of a gamble. But given the money they made from the previous show (probably a large amount, if you see a link that says so, do post it below), it’s a calculated risk.

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“They better keep such shots to a minimal this time. Get it? Shots? ”

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“Oh, so that’s how they got people to finish watching the last season.”

All I know about the previous season is from various self proclaimed anime critics (another self proclaimed critic here) and while some couldn’t stop gushing about the action and the animated imagery of the virtual world set up in the show, others were harsh and blasted the show with comments like “really poor story”, “fucking harem, are you kidding me? This is an MMO!” and many more (the list is endless, believe me, I checked). Most of these comments come from MMO players who were disappointed in how the entire show panned out and reached a level of surrealism that was too much for the show itself. People loved the show when it first came out and then segregated into positions of
“this is the best show ever”,
“It’s ok…but better shows exist”
And
“This sucks. The studio owner should be arrested for this atrocity”
Which are viewpoints, I believe, adopted by the viewers of pretty much every show out there with even the slightest of shounen elements.

So…stop reading articles like these and go f***ing watch it. No , really, there isn’t much to be declared abut the show being good or bad from the first episode. But if you are curious even in the slightest, watch it.

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“No problem, I’ll watch the entire show”

Also, a mini shout out to Eir Aoi. Great opening song coming up guys. Also….Kirito’s avatar in Gun Gale Online is a girl ….I think…. I told you I’ll post spoilers.

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What do you think?

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