「囚われの女王」 (Toraware no Joou)
“Captive Queen”

For the longest time, Sword Art Online has been lacking something that’s almost crucial in the top tier of anime. There’s a certain element of enjoyment that can only really be brought to an anime by sheer, unfettered fabulousness. This is a flair Kirito, as our main character, is distinctly lacking – his almost bleak, and relatively stoic nature goes hand in hand with his dark and dour clothing choices. For the first time since its premiere, we have something that comes vaguely close to the spirit – a character who just barely manages to bring some fabulous to the table. Oh, by the way, it’s Sugou. Yes, the horrible, evil, pretty much one-dimensional antagonist who has fantasies of doing despicable things to Asuna against her will. It’s not perfect though – the pose is about halfway there but he needs a bit more flair and a little less creepy. The smug could probably go too. But it’s the best we’ve got so we can make do! A pity about the motivations.

Surprisingly enough, unlike our last antagonist, Sugou actually has a plan. It’s probably not the best plan – selling mind control technology to the highest bidder is an obvious recipe for disaster – but it’s more than our old friend Kayaba Akihiko apparently had. With the three hundred test subjects captured while trying to escape SAO (I feel bad for them – that sucks on so many levels) he has plenty of material to experiment on. All away from the watchful eyes of Asuna’s father of course – couldn’t have him realising he’d taken pure evil under his wing. His control over this system brings up a small question though – why the keypad? We see Asuna obviously trying to memorise the code so she can escape – it’s a pretty big security risk. He’s the admin so surely he could set the door to open for him and only him with no need for any sort of interface. So why doesn’t he?

Kirito continues to be pretty bad at flying (which is a good thing – we can’t have him instantly mastering everything at once now can we?). This adds a fair bit of entertainment value to the episode, particularly in seeing him crash-land (unfortunately not visibly on his head this time) in the Sylph town. Before this, he casually jokes about seeing himself as a hero who’s just saved a princess… I still wonder if this is truer than he’d like to believe – he’s certainly shown a similar mentality in the past. I also wonder at his willingness to immediately trust a girl he’s seemingly never met before as she takes him into a town in which anyone can attack him but he is unable to fight back. Given that only a few moments ago he was casually massacring other players without any second thoughts, why would he not be more wary of exposing himself to an entire town that could potentially contain players with a similar penchant for nonchalant slaughter? What if the entire situation were reversed and Kirito was saving one of the Salamander guys from Leafa (I still prefer Lyfa honestly)? Would he still be as trusting? Would he even save them?

Once again, this episode sheds a little more light onto ALFheim Online’s design. Like many MMOs of old, the choice of race gives varying bonuses to a player in ALO – something that the more modern MMO archetype seems to be trying to phase out. With this in mind, Kirito really should’ve put more thought into his choice than clothing colour, particularly when his bonuses ostensibly give him no real combat advantages, and I can’t imagine him finding any solid use for treasure hunting abilities during his mad rush to clear the game and save Asuna. We also learn the purpose of clearing the World Tree – where flight time and height are currently limited, that limit will be lifted from the race which finally manages to complete the quest. The idea that clearing it would require collaboration between races is quickly dismissed because only one of the participating races would have their limits removed. There’s actually a fairly simple solution to this – if flying free is the ultimate goal shared by all players, just have everyone reroll as a single race and do it that way! See! Now everyone can fly free!

If it wasn’t already obvious last week (it kind of was), Leafa is in fact played by Sugu. Unlike the whole Kayaba Akihiko twist, this was never intended to be a big revelation. It’s dramatic irony – we’re fully aware that the person Sugu is falling in love with is once again her adopted brother; she, however, is not. It’s rather a cruel irony too. I find it a little strange that in the two months since his release from SAO, Kirito has never once even so much as mentioned the name he’s been living under for two whole years to his family. Given that he’s already divulged everything to the authorities, you’d think he might have been a little more forthright with what he’s been up to for the past two years, at least among family.

tl;dr: @MoombaDS – Kirito learns to fly. The hard way. #SAO

Random thoughts:

  • Remain Lights was an interesting mechanic that was quickly glossed over. It’s probably safe to assume they function in the same way as corpses do in other MMOs – the remnants of dead players from which they can be resurrected before they finally give up on it and teleport home.
  • Th-th-that’s not a very nice way to hold a fairy!
  • I’ve said it a few times now, but ALFheim Online really is completely different to Sword Art Online, particularly in an aesthetic sense. Everything about it looks and feels completely different.
  • The first arc of SAO had a lot of random arse shots. This time the focus seems to be on Sugu/Lyfa’s breasts for some reason…
  • He fell a pretty long way – he should totally have died from the fall damage. Now that would’ve been funny!

Full-length images: 23, 25, 26, 29, 31, 32, 33, 35, 36.



End Card


  1. For those wondering what Kirito said when the voices were silenced, there is no answer in the light novel. Here is the excerpt from that conversation.

    Show Spoiler ▼

    So this is an original scene added for the anime. Personally, I liked how it showed a sense of despair and urgency for Kirito, and it also gave Lyfa more reason to want to help him.

    It is probably not something that will come up again later, so don’t worry about it and just take it as a dramatic effect.

    1. I’m sorry, but I don’t know what scene you’re talking about. What voices? I’m looking through the scene in the anime when they talk about the world tree in the restaurant, but I don’t see anything strange.

      1. It’s fine, perhaps I should have been more specific.

        After Lyfa asked why Kirito was going so far to reach the top of the World Tree, there was a short scene where Kirito explained and her eyes widened in surprise. It was only a few seconds, but the voices were all silenced, as if to hide some detail which would be expanded on later. Then Kirito got up to leave, and Lyfa stopped him.

        The silenced scene actually does not exist in the light novel, so it’s likely only there for dramatic effect. That was my whole point.

      2. Wait, I think I understand what you’re talking about. The part where Kirito says that he’s looking for someone, and Leafa asks “What do you mean”. After Kirito says “It’s something which cannot be explained simply” in the anime, he looks down.

        No one says anything in that moment of silence. The entire point of it is to show how Leafa notices the look in his eyes at that point. You seem to have believed that Leafa was reacting to something Kirito says which the viewer can’t hear, but I don’t think that’s the case.

      3. Yup, you got it.

        Your point was exactly what I was trying to explain. Since it would be hard to portray Lyfa noticing the despair in Kirito’s eyes, the silenced scene was put in to help convey the emotion, which is not a bad replacement in my opinion.

    1. Show Spoiler ▼

      1. Maybe falling from a high place really causes damage but Kirito was lucky enough to not get killed by the fall or he probably has high HP? That’s why Leafa had to heal him?

        Just Passing By
      2. For those wondering why Kirito can handle so much abuse it’s because
        Show Spoiler ▼

  2. It’s dramatic irony – we’re fully aware that the person Sugu is falling in love with is once again her adopted brother; she, however, is not. It’s rather a cruel irony too.

    Irony, you say?

    1. While ALO allows users to conceal their real identity, it would seem it carried over SAO’s function of retaining each user’s accurate body figure……

      As such, both Sugu and Lyfa have very distracting breasts. Not that I’m complaining. 😀

      Kinny Riddle
  3. Phew…SAO is finally getting it’s priorities straight anime-wise. Give me more Lyfa chest shots A-1 pics. More delicious Sugu legs too!

    Well I’m glad for ALO having much better pacing now. Can’t wait to see more stuff animated. (sort of)

  4. > He fell a pretty long way – he should totally have died from the fall damage. Now that would’ve been funny!

    Well, he did have 2 years worth of stats from SAO backing him up so that probably mitigated the damage he would’ve taken to a degree. Even unintentionally, he’s still cheating!

  5. did anyone else LOL when Sugou went all, “I’m the bad guy, hear me monologue. There is no escape for you, Mr. Bond.” Based on the fact that this arc has such a cliched-ridden antagonist, I’m betting that Asuna’s gonna escape, purely because Sogou said she wouldn’t.

    It’s that badly written

    1. Cliches are like stereotypes. There’s a reason they came into being.

      People like to hear themselves talk. And verbally beat others into submission. Just look at this board.

      The above is even more true when they put effort into their evil evil plans. It’s nice to have acknowledgement that they’re pulling off something of significance.

  6. This entire arc feels pointless. The entire story should have just ended after Aincrad. Kirito waking up should have just been the finale of the story, but they just had to milk the franchise. I can already tell that the Lite Novels aren’t even that much of an improvement. This series is dogshit. Want a better anime based on a LN? Watch Fate/Zero. Ditch this bullshit.

    0/10… DROPPED.

      1. Their dislike of Fate/Zero may not be regarding the quality, but the content. It was a virtual parade of terrible people doing terrible deeds all for nothing, and in the end, evil won.

        I like Fate/Zero, but that’s because I tell myself that at the end of the day, they all go to Cafe Ahnnerebe.

    1. If you are talking about the LN, i suppose you read every one of the published volumes, or at least read the first four volumes, right? If you did so, then you have all the rights to complain, and i won’t argue with, as taste is something personal. But if you didn’t, then you are just a stupid troll, being angry because this arc just have a slower pace.

    2. SAO cheerleading squad is working hard yet again today. How dare LaughingMan or anyone say anything negative about SAO on SAO blog, no matter how deserving?? For future posters: just write brainless one-line comments like “best episode ever!” or “Asuna is moe!” and your post will be upgraded into green column in no time. That’s the rule here, you see.

    3. In a sense, Yes. It is a little pointless after Aincrad was finished. But the main story line for SAO was only one volume so there must be some way the characters can continue with their journeys (which a lot of readers would like to see, including myself). Personally, ALO is not all that interesting but reading LN was entertaining nonetheless. If you find the anime garbage, maybe you should try and read the LN for once since LN goes deeper into character developments.

    4. @LaughingMan – I actually agree with your comment up to that line “Kirito waking up should have just been the finale of the story” because that’s exactly what I thought when I read the Light Novels sometime ago. Fortunately I held on until Mother’s Rosario/Alicization and now I can say that putting my time in SAO was not a waste.

      IMO I appreciated watching ALO more than reading it because ALO is meant for stunning visuals (fairy races, magic spells, etc) but don’t just go ditching the LN because of ALO.

  7. Fairly good episode for SAO. I’m glad that Yui is more than just a moe blob in this arc(not that I mind though). I hope we see more of her AI abilities put to use. Also, this arc has a more MMO feel to it and I hope it sticks to that especially since the next episode looks like the start of the dungeon crawls. I feel really bad for Recon though, he is sooooo getting NTR by Kirito and love that ending shot of him stalking Sugu and Kirito lol.

      1. For Suguha, he is a boy and he is a friend, but everything about him stops there. He never, ever has been a boyfriend of her and it’s very, very likely he never will. Poor dude indeed.

        U Doh
  8. A real problem i have with the Fairy Dance Arc is that it’s more about creating a background for the next arcs than telling a story itself. Phatom Bullet and Alicization (specially the later) were/are more entertaining, maybe because there is an actual fear of death on their stories…

  9. “We see Asuna obviously trying to memorise the code so she can escape – it’s a pretty big security risk.”

    Although the keypad does seem a bit unnecessary, he clearly is not a fool since Asuna’s sight is disrupted when she tries to look at the keypad. So I don’t think it is much of a security risk.

  10. Hear me now: Dramatic Irony and Kirito being OP are the two things driving ALO. Seriously. That’s it. If you can’t put up with that, you might want to consider dropping out for a few Eps before coming back, because the ending is at once awesome, what you were waiting for, and something that not enough writers do.

    1. Why doesn’t she recognise Kirito? Even though this game doesn’t require that the avatar resemble the player, SAO did. And other than the ears and wings, there isn’t much of a difference in their appearance.

    1. Eh, no. ALO that drags on is just boring. There were already some parts in the LN that felt forced and needed to be rushed through. Though the main characters do make their MMO base in ALO.

      Suppa Tenko
    1. During a character Q&A session, Yui was asked about this too. XD

      Q. What will you do if you see Papa being unfaithful?
      A. I will not allow that! I will fly in and get in his way!

      Q. What are your thoughts on your completely airheaded Papa?
      A. I believe he should get married with Mama in the real world as soon as possible.

      You can read the rest here. The interview is both cute and hilarious.

      1. This is from Kirito’s interview.

        Q. Don’t your eyes wander with all the girls around you?
        A. I have no intention of doing that, but Asuna tends to keep an eye on me. It’s strange.

        Q. There’s many girls around you, but which one do you like in the end?
        A. M-My eyes aren’t wandering at all.

        Q. Are you finally planning to narrow it down to one of them? Or do you not consider anyone aside from Asuna?
        A. I… I don’t.

        Q. If you were to be unfaithful, who would you go with?
        A. I won’t, I won’t, I won’t even imagine it.

        Q. If polygamy was possible, would you feel like making a harem? If you do, who would you pick?
        A. I-I wouldn’t make such a thing.

      2. Interesting, all of Kirito´s questions are about girls, people do missinterpretes his actions but can´t blame them, the person who person who atracts more problems and beautiful girls than him is Ayasaki Hayate and that´s really worrying. Hey Master-san, where can I read the rest of Kirito´s interview, it sounds like a lot of fun.

      3. I actually picked out the ones dealing with Kirito and Asuna, which only account for a small part of the interview.

        The rest can be read here, but keep in mind that the interview covers close to the latest volumes of the light novel, so if you have not read it yet it may spoil you.

      4. Q. Who was your first love? Also, what position would Asuna be, in order of the women you liked?
        A. Someone who was in the “Black Cats of the Moonlit Night”… I guess. Basically, that would make Asuna the next person I ended up liking after her.

        Isn’t it sad, Sachi?

  11. I just realized.. I was basically raging when in Accel World we get to the Dusk Taker arc.. I stopped watching until I could watch it all in one go at the end..
    If I haven’t read the SAO novel.. I would’ve stopped watching here too.. Two chars I hate most this year are from the same author..

    1. Btw before you haters shun me.. When I said ‘stop watching’ it meant postpone watching until end of arc then marathon.. Haven’t you seen from my comments how much I love this show?-.-

    1. Leafa/Lyfa have been playing ALO for about 1 year, while the game is 2 years old. The main reason she joined it was so she could understand more about her cousin/brother universe, but because of her kendo skills she ended up being kind of a pro at the game

  12. 80% of SAO comments are about Asuna or whoever’s boobs. All the thumbs up go there (because really, this is constructive stuff and people want to see these comments) but when comments of criticism to the show arises it receives all the hate. What has the RC community come to?

    1. It is not so much criticism that receives the hate, rather it is the bashing of the series and insults towards people who enjoy it.

      I actually welcome constructive criticism, which can lead to interesting discussions. I like SAO, but by no means is it a perfect series and many of the indicated flaws are valid. But the moment people start insulting each other and calling names, then it becomes nothing more than an argument.

      Other than that, a good deal of my comments are lighthearted jokes or sarcasm, so don’t take them too seriously.

      1. A real problem with this criticism are the comments regarding the story. People tend to forget that books and series are not the same. It’s perfectly normal for a book to have a slow beginning and then a good climax. But when we take a weekly series, it becomes harder to apply such a formula. Here comes my warning: This arc haven’t even begun yet. It’s still in the stage of introducing characters and universe.

    2. Don´t take it too seriously, this is all part of the fun of excnging opinions about anime with other who love it. Just post a comment and laugh at your hearts content if it recieves tons of aproval or hatred. Don´t be afraid of leaving critism, we all have different taste and that´s why we talk about here, to see who agrees with us. For me it´s a lot of fun.

      1. Neither do I, those novels are adictived, once I started reading the first volume before I knew it I was already in the Early and Late novel. I can´t wait to see how Alicezation is going to conclude but I kind of make an idea of it.

    3. I’ll admit I was one of those guilty talking about Sugu/Lyfa’s well-endowed chest-sized.

      It was mostly out of jest and to lighten up the mood of the discussion, but it doesn’t mean I’m not open to criticism of the show. Constructive criticism is most welcome as it encourages debate, but when criticisms contain elements of smugness or elitism (going out to declare they’re dropping the show as though anyone cares), then I have a problem with that.

      Kinny Riddle
    4. Constructive criticism is always welcome. Although I myself am a huge fan of the story, I am willing to admit that it is NOT a perfect story. There are flaws in it. But the unfortunate thing is that much of the criticisms being posted are just general flaming.

      They tend to think constructive criticism means just simply making derogatory comments about the story. But what should be considered is instead comments that they feel that the story doesn’t seem to flow or that maybe perhaps this particular part could have been done better. That is an example of constructive criticism. Saying “This sucks”, or “I’m dropping this shit”, is simply asking for people to down-vote them. Even more so when the comments are not even directed at the story itself but fans of the story. Each and every person is entitled to their own personal opinions but using it as an excuse to start bashing is what irks me.

    5. Think of it this way, the people that click the like or dislike buttons are the people that normally would never comment, they have always been there but they where, and sill are, too lazy to write a comment.

  13. I think it was a great idea to have this completely different environment from SAO. The development between Asuna and Kirito grounds this series for me. And what they’ve done to the story gives some great opportunity to build their relationship between the two.

    As someone has already mentioned it’s so cool to see Kirito be so faithful to Asuna. I really enjoyed how the they portrayed Kirito’s fears of losing someone and how she was always there for him. Now we get to see his determination for her. How they are unable to see or talk to each other after SAO, was and, is just heartbreaking which keeps me tide this to see them reunite!

    It’s sad to see them make a character that seems as though they will only get hurt by those developments. Sugu is a great character I wish they didn’t make her out to be interested in Kirito.

    Anyway love the series!

  14. My strongest reaction in this episode: Go **** yourself, smug@$$.
    Now I think I can put this guy next to QB in my most hatred charac list. Even Noumi didn’t make me hate him, just annoyed.

    Adaptation wise, wise its quite OK IMO (Well I may need to read the LN again to be exact….) but IIRC isn’t there a detail explanation of Remain Light? Also I think they left out the “sleep log out” explanation….

    Geez us neutral(?) fanbase getting caught in between the crossfire bet rabid fans and haters…. Don’t get me wrong, I like SAO but its undeniable there some flaw here and there. In fact, I don’t mind some constructive criticism/discussion. But not blind hatred bashing and smugy post. ==|| And well, isn’t some comedy is good? Those Sugu gif XD

    Apparently abec is a female high school student as of tht article writing o.O

    Leafa sounds more like Kirino compare to Sugu.

    Kirito, focus!!

    1. That said, veteran VA Koyasu Takehito must be applauded for making his character such a despicable scumbag. He really is quite suited at playing such despicable characters.

      (Interesting, Koyasu plays the father of Tomatsu Haruka’s (Asuna) character in Tonari no Kaibutsu-kun this season. Is it too much to expect someone eventually mashing up dialogues from both series to make a hilarious parody video? )

      Kinny Riddle
  15. One thing that SAO has a knack for is that it gives me something enjoyable to hope for and then it takes all that excitement and proceeds to take a giant dump on it in favor something far blander and more annoying. This episode is a clear reminder of it.

    Let’s take the talk with Leafa for example, she gives this whole exposition dump on warring sides on a PvP server and an ultimate goal of reaching the top of the World Tree. Kirito makes a suggestion that it can only be done if the warring players band together. This right here is interesting on its own right. I like the idea of an MMO to were warring PvP players band together to reach an ultimate goal. It actually sounds fun and I would definitley watch two cours of that.

    But nope, SAO feels the need to put an antagonist with zero depth because it seems like the writer doesn’t know how to build proper tension. So now I have to see all excitement ruined by this Sugou who starts to exposit his EVIIIIIIL plan. Why? For money of course because when you can’t make a motive worth a s*** just make it all about greed! Is this guy for real?

    And while we’re at it, lets talk about Asuna. Remember our perfect badass waifu? Well, glad to see all that credibility flushed down the toilet, she’s now reduced to nothing more than a trophy for our hero to win. Watch her collapse, weep and cry for help because she’s such a strong, independent woman. Feminism marches on!

    1. Let’s separate your comment in parts, so i can explain how much nonsense you wrote. First of all, let’s talk about Kiritos idea. As may have noticed, this arc barely began, and we’re still having introductions to the universe and characters. In the next 3~4 episodes, you’ll be able to have a better image of what is this racexrace system. The races spy each other, steal each other and try to destroy each other. Even then Show Spoiler ▼

      Now, let’s talk about Asuna. She was, indeed, a powerful player in SAO, and a really independent woman. But now she’s being held captive by a moderator, a guy who, no matter how strong you are in the game, can only be beaten by someone with the same power over the system. Not only that, but Asuna’s life is on the hands of this mad man. I never had my life in the hand of someone else, but i don’t think i’d get too cocky with that person.

      1. You missed my entire point. I details are not the problem. The problem is how the entire plot falls apart because it relies on the basest, simplest plot devices for the sake of pandering. The writing has no balls to make use of the amazing setting. Might as well just remove the MMO aspect and make it fantasy and I wouldn’t notice the difference.

        We have a horribly out-of-place Snidely Whiplash villain who wants to get money with unsettling “rapey” subtext. We have an established character reduced to damsel in distress for no other reason that she’s a girl and the Kirito’s love interest. We have pointless new love interests for Kirito when the KiritoxAsuna ship has already been set in stone. Why do we need any of this? Its just stupid.

      2. Asuna is being saved because she is a girl, If it was so Show Spoiler ▼

        . Regarding Kirito’s new nemesis, this is surely the greatest plothole of this arc, along with Suguha’s brocon. I won’t deny these two characters could be better made. But, at the end of the day, i remember Fairy Dance’s whole purpose is more of ending the SAO-incident and setting the background for other arcs…

    2. I am somewhat bothered by this resent fad of militant feminism. So asuna cried, you don’t think Kirito have cried any resently? Kirito also have had 2 months to recover while Asuna has had 2 months of capivity to drain her.

      I also don’t get why some are bothered with this arc being about Kirito rescuing Asuna. Asuna rescued Kirito just a while ago and maybe she will be the one to rescue him the next time. I would understand it more if Asuna had to be rescued all the time.

      1. We spent half the series trying to establish Asuna as strong enough to stand with Kirito. Its been completely undermined for the sake of plot. Why? Did we really need a damsel plot? You can’t tell me nothing is wrong with that.

        The icing to the misogyny cake is how Asuna cries “Save me Kirito!”. Might as well have said, “I need a man to protect me because they never fall for this plot-contrived helplessness!”

      2. Undermined? If it were a situation she could get out of on her own, I would agree, but she’s being held by a system administrator. She has no weapons, no skills in this new system, and he can take control of her body to force her to do what he wants. What exactly are you expecting her to DO?

        More importantly, a core message throughout all the novels that it seems a lot of people somehow miss is that nothing can be shouldered alone. Every trial, every villain, every danger in this series is only overcome by multiple people all working together. Asuna cannot get out of this alone. The story of a badass girl who defeats the villain by herself and escapes is not what’s being told here. She will contribute to her rescue, more than just waiting around for help, but she can’t get out of this alone. No one could. And that’s the POINT.

      3. Again, people missed the point. Its not about the details. Its the fact that the plot requires that Asuna be the designated victim. The perfect waifu. The primary love interest. The GIRL.

      4. >Did we really need a damsel plot? You can’t tell me nothing is wrong with that.
        Nothing is wrong with that. Just because it isn’t innovative or new, doesn’t mean it’s ‘wrong’.

        >We have an established character reduced to damsel in distress for no other reason that she’s a girl and the Kirito’s love interest
        The reason is because Sugou wants to marry her. It’s like you’re pulling these complaints out of your ass.

      5. @fragb

        The icing to the misogyny cake is how Asuna cries “Save me Kirito!”. Might as well have said, “I need a man to protect me because they never fall for this plot-contrived helplessness!”

        As for the misogyny cake, let’s put it another way: why aren’t you raging at yet another man being put in the position of villain? It’s like only men do bad things. And if you’ve ever watched Criminal Minds, almost every serial killer is a man. Sexism!

        And men DO fall for those “plot-contrived helplessness” all the time. Go read something shonen-ai or yaoi.

      6. @PK
        So she’s danger of being married because she’s a girl relegated to a trophy to be fought over. Who needs to be saved by her love interest Kirito. I think you just proved my point.

      7. Its not about the details.

        It’s ALL about the details. Every story everywhere is only differentiated by the details. The details are exactly what makes this more than the bland thing you’re trying to grind it down to. By refusing to care about the details, you’re essentially saying “I don’t care what you all say, I’m right and you’re wrong so bleh.” Details are what makes stories be more than “Something happened. The end.” The details are IMPORTANT, and if you bother to look at them you will see why this is more than what you’re trying to dismiss it as.

      8. And once again you missed the point and now you’re putting words in my mouth. You can spin up as many reason as you like about why Asuna is being held hostage but none of it is relevant to my complaint. The fact that plot has written her to be a distress damsel to be saved by her man. That’s my problem.

      9. You are right, exactly like how Kirito was the distressed ‘damsel’ being rescued by his ‘man’ Asuna a couple of episodes ago. Were you equally bothered by that one? Or is only when a girl needs to be rescued that you see a problem? We have a story where a guy and a girl alternates rescuing eachother and you simply ignore the times when the guy needs help and then proceed to scream unfairness when it’s the girls turn.

      10. Militant feminism…


        Just say out “femnazi”. It’s shorter, and describes fully what you want to say. Being a feminist isn’t bad. but when you mix Misandry with feminism, you get femnazi, which is bad. I can remember the Queen if Switzerland(?) and Agnes Chan starting the trend years before against anime. Totally funny, even now.(Women’s enemy no.1 is Makoto Itou, the golden dildo)

        The Moondoggie
    3. I fail to see why you think every villain must have an interesting motivation. Greed is a very real, very present, very common driver for people to do horrible things.

      As for Asuna crying, in her own words, she used to cry herself to sleep every night for almost two years until she started falling in love with Kirito, so….it’s not her fault you decided to forget an aspect of her personality you didn’t like.

      1. When a story tries to convince me to take it it seriously, introducing someone over-the-top as Greedy Rapey McMolesty turns everything into a joke and shaters my ejoyment. This is the exact problem I had with Accel World.

        And I’m not sure what you’re point with Asuna is. That her character development backtracked to a crying wreck when she already got over it? Because that only makes her look worse.

      2. This is basically a wish-fulfilling harem story. What part of that says “take me seriously?”

        And it’s not that Asuna’s characterization de-evolved. Consider that she was crying because of how hopeless every day seemed to her in SAO. Kirito was her support, and if he died, she threatened to kill herself. Which is not what “strong, independent” people do. They mourn for however long, but they don’t give up on living either.

        Now she’s in an arguably worse position, where instead of being threatened with death, it’s Rapey McRapesAlot, mind-control, and marriage, with no apparent way to defend herself. It would be more odd if she didn’t cry at least once or call out for Kirito.

        Asuna IS getting better, and is getting stronger, but she’s not as fully developed as some people would say either.

    4. I do agree with your points on Asuna being downgraded to a damsel-in-distress (I really really like badass Asuna), but when I think that SAO overall is a romantic story first before action/fantasy, I calm myself a bit.

      1. I fail to see why frag rants on this: beautiful women will forever be the target of every men. It’s not misogynistic, it’s nature. And since the bad guy is, well, a guy who is just as bad as any greedy rapey villain, of course it would turn out like this.

        And his complain about the story plots being basic for the sake of pandering: what? What pandering? It’s called world exploring. This might be based on SAO’s servers and Cardinal system, but SAO and ALO are different from each other. It’s like comparing RF Online with Flyff. Of course the story will take time to explore the world first.

        And complaining about the basics is like complaining about every anime ever. Basics are the core, you don’t complain about that.

        Let me show you:

        Little Busters: Random friends decide to play baseball.

        See how basic is like that? For many people people, that basic idea works. So complaining about the basic damsel-in-distress gig is just dumb.

        The Moondoggie
    5. @fragb85,
      wat ur saying isn’t that Asuna weeps,cries for help or even look slightly weak because she’s a girl rather u don’t expect her to do those things BECAUSE she’s a girl.(sexist much?)
      if u take a good look at the anime you’ll see that almost every character(including Kirito) had weak moments and needed someone else to protect them.

  16. Poor Sugu, first IRL, then in ALO, she just couldn’t find her true love. Not yet anyway. Though Recon could be a potential candidate, as he seemed quite protective of her upon seeing Kirito.

    Must really suck for those 300 players, including Asuna, upon being freed from SAO, they get trapped in another state of limbo once again.

    Kayaba, while being a sort of serial killer psychopath himself as he is after all responsible for the deaths of 4000 people, at least gives his test subjects a chance seek out their own fate. Sugou OTOH is denying them even that as he literally toys with their minds.

    He even purposely trolled Asuna by blurring her vision of the keypad, daring her to try and memorize the code with such a handicap.

    Kinny Riddle
    1. “He even purposely trolled Asuna by blurring her vision of the keypad,”

      No, he doesn’t. It’s just that the system reduces the details for objects when they are viewed from a larger distance to increase the system performance.

      1. Really?

        From how I saw that scene, the areas around the keypad and Sugou’s fingers were less blurred than on the keypad, which was pixelled out even more for obvious reasons.

        But if you’re a novel reader and what you said is true, then it has to be and this is yet another adaptation error by A1 Pictures.

        Kinny Riddle
      2. here is the part of the novel that explains it: Show Spoiler ▼

  17. -Imouto-san know full well how dangerous of VR game (her coma brother is good example) but she still play VR game for one year.
    -Imouto-san don’t known anything about hero called Kirito.
    -Imouto-san only and always fall for her brother.

    1. -Imoutou wants to know how her brother experiences the death game and want to understand why he likes MMO. Plus, amusphere is safeguarded.

      -You really think the gov will tell the family member/public about the detail and player stuff?

      -Its a cliche. Take it or leave it.

  18. poor, poor Suguha… hugging her pillow and not aware she is hitting on her oniichan, again!
    awwwwwwww… And all the while she has adoring her same-grader she is unable to notice…
    Kirito crash-landing has become in-series meme?
    Sugou, dont you think youre playing with fire? Big Corporations like to have clean up after doing dirty business…
    Asuna, hang on, Kirito is on his way…
    It is a nice contrast to the SAO, in ALO Kirito is totally newb with no knowledge of in-game world. It is really convenient he has Leafa to help him now?

  19. Looks like we just saw the making of “that class” which normally wouldn’t help “another class” since there can only be one person who conquers the world tree help out due to the fact (from what I think) Sugu will really want to help out her brother reunite with Asuna despite her feelings for him. Major drama incoming, weeewwtt.

  20. This episode….I just can’t wait for the next episode to air, I want Kirito to beat the crap out of that antagonist already.

    I became pretty concerned what will remain of the final half of the anime after they went out of SAO, I actually thought the series will spent the remaining episodes with the survivors trying to cope back with the real world, what we get instead is another online adventure and I just couldn’t be less satisfied to where its heading now 🙂

  21. There one thing and only one thing I have a problem with the adaptation, and that’s the fact they never go into Kirito thought process, or thoughts in general. The point of that entire one on one at the start of the Main Arc was suppose to establish how he thought, how smart and how good he is at what he does. He points out the weakness, proceeds to initiate it in real life and take victory. It really makes Kirito stand out as different from other protagonist to, especially for me. That’s just me though.

    Also, I seriously don’t understand where this milking of the franchise comes out from… He originally wrote all these stories for free online before a company asked to publish it with Accel World. In fact, this is almost undeniable early proof that he honestly just wrote it for himself before. I can understand criticism, but when you’re not using logic and common sense, to flap your opinion, something clearly wrong here.

    Also, while the plot is a damsel in distress kind of plot, I feel like some people are ignoring the facts to why she is in distress at the moment. Seriously, I don’t think you should be mad at all in the first place, unless Asuna wasn’t in a lock cage, wasn’t threatened by a maniac, and didn’t do anything at all! What are we now, plot elitist now? Sure some plots may be basic, or classic, or simple, but execution is what we should look at times. It’s like we should all ignore the Avengers for it’s basic plot of saving the world, The Godfather for it’s basic plot of a man growing into something more from his upbringing, or Romeo and Juliet being a romance of two people. Seriously, I don’t understand, I’ve read great works of the past and today, some surprise me some don’t, some are basic some are not, it doesn’t make it anymore or less of how good each one is. If it doesn’t stick to you (Like Jojo Bizarre Adventure doesn’t stick to me, or some persons writing style), that’s great, move on with life. Don’t bash people for liking something. If you have criticism, expect people to disagree, cause that’s how everyone is. It’s like if you like something, don’t expect everyone to like the same thing… it’s works both ways

    Honestly, I don’t know what’s worse anymore… it’s like people see the entire world in black and white rather than gray. And some people just don’t realize that a complex plot can easily just be as bad as a simple one. Point is, execution is just as important as plot, if not more… well at least to me.

    *Prepared for people disagree with him on both sides*

    Sora no Kaze
  22. Based on what Recon is portrayed to look like in real life, I half expected him to be voiced by Fukuyama Jun…

    But, what I am seeing in this arc is the same thing I noticed in the Noumi arc of Accel World. Ridiculously repulsive villain that’s hard to believe? Check. Main heroine doesn’t play a big role for the majority of the arc? Starting to look like it. Basically I waited a whole season of episodes to get the emotional release of Noumi being defeated in AW when it probably should have taken 2-3 episodes max. Now assuming this arc does the same, it won’t be until the end of this season for this arc to be done with. Well, at least there’s Sugu/Leafa in this arc.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *