Sword Art Online

Author: Timekeeper

 

Okay, yes. I did say in a thread earlier beforehand that I was going to review Gankutsuou next, but to be perfectly honest, the show is taking more time to get to where it's going than a snail strapped to an anchor dragging it's way from one end of the Sahara to the next. So unless the show has a point it's trying to reach, which I really hope it does, I don't see how I can write a review in which I'm investing about as much time into as the US government is investing in anything but war.

Instead, how about I review something that'll most likely ignite a war in the thread?: Sword Art Online

Also, I will ONLY be reviewing the first series because of two reasons:

1. I could give less of a shit about Sword Art Online II since it was a bigger letdown than my social life.
2. I haven't watched the dub and I don't really plan to

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Story:

Now, like most of you guys, when I first saw the premise of Sword Art Online, I thought "Wow. This is pretty cool". But then I realized that some other really horrid movie sort of tried the whole death game scenario and my whole "Ooohs" and "Aaaahs" sort of went away. At first. I say this because unlike aforementioned movie, Sword Art Online seems to take this premise and make is a successful selling point. However, this sort of falls a bit flat upon the arrival of the second half of the first series when it goes from being a death game to a "you can die and you'll just respawn, there's no twist" game, which is why I can see why people particularly loathe the second half. But there are a bit of flaws with the first half as well, especially with the ending where the only bigger cop-out ending I've seen in a LONG time was from this movie.

Characters:

Alright, now here's where I get into the "I'm going to burn this series to the ground" part. Yes, most of the characters are quite diverse from one another, but two things always seemed to anger me and the majority of the Sword Art Online fanbase:

1. Nearly every female character wants to get in Kirito's pants

 

2. You could throw every weapon, nuke, and pointy object at Kirito and he'd somehow still manage to pull hope out of his ass and beat you down. Otherwise known as "Mary Sue Syndrome"

Okay, I'm done bashing. Let's talk goodness.

As I said, Kirito is a bit of a "I'm perfect and I don't even know it sort of guy" which kind of makes any other male character beyond redundant, but honestly, no one could care less about the other males in this show. Rather, you come there for Kirito and his ever-expanding harem of females leads. You have the sort-of-loli, the spunky one, the childish one (who isn't even a part of his harem, shut up), the shy one (granted she barely stays in the show), and the tsundere (you people know damn well who's who). So you'll either end up picking a favorite, saying "eh", or hating them all with equal vigor. Take your pick.

Audio:

Now, the music for Sword Art Online is actually another big selling point. Beautifully composed, rightly timed, and always a pleasure to listen to. The only complaint I can really about the music for Sword Art Online is that every epic fight with a monster, boss, or enemy is includes an orchestra and choir that's playing like the computer monitor is about to explode from how epic it thinks it is. I mean, it's not bad, but a little variety is nice every now and then.

As for the dub, well...I was a little off-put hearing Bryce Papenbrook seeing that it was the first actual time I had ever heard his voice in a dubbing role. However, his voice as Kirito sort of grew on me over time as the series progressed. As for Cherami Leigh, I've heard her voice in countless difference roles beforehand, so hearing her voice as Asuna was a breath of fresh air. Many people think that both of them sucked at their roles, but I thought "hell, they could've picked someone worse". And trust me. I know worse.

Art and animation:

Once again, another selling point for Sword Art Online. Both the art and animation are superb to say the least. Detailed backgrounds and settings as well as fluid animation, especially during fight scenes.

Verdict:

To be honest, if you're a veteran of the anime community and want to watch something that deserves a six or seven in my book, go right ahead and watch it. However, if you're new to the community, I'd actually suggesting giving this a watch to help you expose yourself to broader horizons. Lastly though, if you're expecting a well-thought out story that makes sense and has no loose dangling plot threads...I wouldn't really recommend it...

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If you'd like me to review a show, go ahead and comment down below and I'll see what I can do so long as it's not an extremely bulky series (Naruto, Bleach, Fairy Tail, One Piece, etc.) ^_^