「Reincarnation; 再生」 (Saisei)
I’m usually scared for finales like Accel World because their source is still on-going and the anime seems to tie relatively well to the light novel. All things considered though, I think AW did a great job coming together for its last episode (of the season) and tied as many loose ends as it could. It’s one of those endings that leave a “to be continued” feeling. At the same time, the ending is satisfying enough to leave me with a happy ending so I’m not craving a second season. That’s right; I am not dying for a second season. It would be nice, but I also think that this season is great standalone anime and there’s no compelling reason for me to sign an angry petition for another season.
Since Noumi appeared, I was always curious of how he could go down. I have to say that his end… came in one of the most satisfying ways possible. It makes me feel a little sadistic, but I don’t care because he deserves it. He deserves being chopped up and losing his abilities. He should consider his memory loss a blessing because now he doesn’t have to remember the torments of his brother or his desire for power. He seems happy enough as he is now right? I would consider what Haruyuki did, a favor to Noumi.
I continuously bashed Chiyuri in the past few episodes, and now, I kind of regret it (although not entirely). Since her partnership with Noumi and her lack of emotions – I just could not empathize or find any positive spin to her point of view. Luckily for her, she nearly redeems herself this episode and even though I almost never find twists surprising anymore, her plan execution actually blew me away. I never thought of her as someone “clever” and cunning, but her ability to think so far ahead and know herself (clearly I didn’t know her at all), actually paid off. Hopefully with a new season, she can prove to be more useful with her ability to revert time.
There’s finally been more development between Haruyuki and Kuroyukihime as well and their reunion was sweeter than I imagined. His request truly did sound like a proposal, but I guess that’s just misinterpretation on my part. All the hugging and handholding was adorable though. Haven’t I mentioned this before? I think AW does a great job on emphasizing the relationship Haruyuki and Kuroyukihime. As many girls pop in and out of Haruyuki’s life, there’s only one that he wants to be with.
In all honesty, blogging a 2-cour show is not as difficult as it seems when there’s so much going on. Accel World is a show that has a lot going on. The premise makes it sound like a shallow, typical action series, but it’s not. There’s a lot of depth to the characters, a lot of depth (and breadth) to the Accelerated World and (although I had issues with it in the beginning), there’s always new elements to be discovered.
I know one of the major turnoffs for most of people who start watching this series is Haruyuki. He’s fat, he’s short, he has quite a few girls surrounding him, and he has no qualities that make him stand out as a protagonist. My argument for this is – I don’t think any protagonist should be “perfect”. The point of a story is to see a character grow and develop and if they’re already “perfect”, then the show just isn’t interesting or progressing anywhere. Yes, Haruyuki isn’t perfect and he does suffer a bit from “main character syndrome”, but I promise that it doesn’t last long and soon, you find out that he has many flaws (many of which aren’t easily solved).
The first half of the series, is admittedly a lot of setup. The typical scenarios are predictable and quick to jump to conclusions. There are a lot of characters introductions (for reoccurring characters) and very stereotypical reasons for things to happen. Of course, there are always going to be painful episodes to watch and for AW, the majority of them were within the first few episodes. For me, the real excitement began with the introduction of Chrome Disaster.
With all that said, I still believe that AW has a lot more redeeming points than faults. There is a deep underlying story that is waiting to be unfolded and there’s a lot of potential which I would love to see in a second season. The characters are all unique and fun to watch (my favorites being Yuniko and Sky Raker) while the story actually takes its time to unravel piece by piece. It all comes together one way or another and that’s what I can appreciate about this finale. So for anyone who hasn’t given AW a chance (whether it be because of Haruyuki or the bucket of tears spilled in this show or the seemingly general tone at the beginning), it is worth a shot and I guarantee that there are enough surprises to keep it thriving.