We’ve got a hot babe to save.
Plot summary: Kirito tries to bust through the invisible barrier, but he fails. Somehow, however, Asuna manages to drop a keycard to him. Our hero finally decides to stop wasting his energy and brave the dungeon all by his lonesome instead, but he fails pretty hard. Leafa has to put herself in danger’s way to resurrect him, but since there’s no real death in ALO anyway, the scene loses much of its impact. After being revived, Kirito wants to throw himself at a thousand arrows again, confessing to Leafa that he has to save Asuna at all costs. It is at this point that Leafa realizes she’s been questing with her oniichan. Drrrraaaamaaaaaa~
• Leafa takes off after Kirito and wonders to herself, “Kirito-kun, what’s wrong? The person at the top of the World Tree is that important to you?” It makes me wonder why she hasn’t once asked him about the purpose of their quest. Yes, they all want to climb the World Tree, but Kirito obviously isn’t doing it for some stupid perma-flight (or maybe he is…). Plus, this can’t be the first time Yui has referred to the person atop the World Tree as ‘mama.’ Such a thing has to pique her interest, no?
• In a cooler, sillier anime, Kirito’s determination would just pierce the heavens. But then we wouldn’t have a dungeon to crawl, now would we?
• Are you serious, girl? It looks like you can just slip your little twig body through the bars!
C’mon, what are you waiting for? Just go! Oh that’s right: Kirito has to literally save her. Some of you will object and say, “She’ll just fall out of the sky and die!” Nuh uh, looks like there are plenty of places for her to slip through the bars and plant her feet on solid ground:
• Remember how she pilfered some keycard last week? Asuna decides to toss it over the side and it lands softly in Kirito’s hands. I guess it’s a one-way barrier!
• Kirito pokes it like some kind of monkey.
• Aw what is this corny shit:
The holy trinity of anime: the Gary Stu, the former heroine turned damsel-in-distress, and the inexplicable loli.
• There are guardians in front of the World Tree that even raids cannot overcome. Oh boy, let’s just see how Gary Stu does it — probably with one punch too. It’s hard to highlight the differences between the SAO arc and this arc, because it feels painfully similar. Uber-important story quest >> Kirito pairs up with another girl >> Kirito does it all by himself and looks cool. What’s the contrasting element other than the fact that you can’t die in ALO? Flight? That’s it? No critical character growth?
See, this is why I would’ve liked Kirito to have some sense of urgency in saving Asuna, ’cause he dragged his feet in SAO despite the fact that his life was on the line. I mean, if your true love can’t motivate you, what else will? I also would’ve liked to see Kirito actually recruit help since he lone wolf’d it up last time and look where it got him. But there hasn’t been any character development since Kirito realized he loved Asuna. No, really. What has he learned since then? What has changed about him or his character since then? No, don’t list the wings. That’s superficial. The answer is nothing. Nothing at all. His character arc is a straight, horizontal line.
• Kirito: “And if I have to waste another second just standing around, I’m going to go insane.” Oh, now you’re in a hurry!
• I thought this dungeon would be interesting to look at, but uh:
Where did all the world-building go? Those of you who have played MMOs… you guys know that dungeons are fairly interesting setpieces. In SAO, however…
• Hey, I’ll give SAO credit for one thing: Kirito didn’t just waltz his way to the top instantly. Actually, one more thing: “Somewhere in my heart, I believed this world was just a game. Is this my punishment for that?” Is this finally some introspection? Does our Gary Stu actually have any pathos?
• Wow, the resurrection time is over 500 seconds. Ain’t nobody’s got time for that! I’m assuming he can’t just respawn at some home point or whatever? I mean, it doesn’t look like he got very far into the dungeon. All you’d have to do is have release and try again, right? But I guess in ALO, you gotta wait ten minutes to respawn or hope someone comes to save you. Speaking of which…
• Another heroine needlessly sacrifices herself for Kirito’s sake again ’cause he decided to brave the dungeon alone. I mean, c’mon now, it’s almost like we’re watching the same damn arc. It’s just that in the previous arc, your life was at stake. But think about it: what would Kirito do if Asuna dies or gets NTR’d? She’s his life now, i.e. his life with his ideal e-waifu is at stake. He has something real and tangible in the outside world to save, and yet people say that his true self lies only within MMOs. What a lark.
• Rather odd to me that his soul or whatever that flame is supposed to represent is located around his crotch:
Well, maybe it’s not so odd if you really think about it.
• I’m amazed 16 minutes of the episode have passed already and we haven’t gotten anywhere. Oh how the time flies by.
• I’d feel bad for Sugu… if it wasn’t incest, but since it is, I don’t give a damn. In fact, I’m not even going to analyze the last few minutes of the episode. Don’t care, don’t want to care.
• The sound effect when Sugu landed on her bed… aaaaaaahahaha, just listen to it again. A perfect ending to that eye-rolling “We are not literally siblings!” conversation. Kirito and Sugu simply grew up together, shared the same home, shared the same “mom,” referred to each other respectively as oniichan and imouto, etc. But c’mon, we’re not literally siblings. Just literally first cousins. *fartz*