Sword Art Online II (Summer 2014) – The Mess of Spade

Genre: Action, Game, Adventure, Romance, Fantasy
Director: Tomohiko Itō
Writer: Reki Kawahara

Sword Art Online” admittedly said as one of the “so many errors” anime of its own. Somehow, it becomes a pop culture in the community. I just don’t know what the magnum opus of the author, Reki Kawahara, though is. Does he know much about a story, video game, or whatsoever? And the most complex question in this anime is, did we need the second season?

Well, I also didn’t know that this is one of the most anticipated anime at the time. Everyone anticipated until it spilled out. The weird thing is, I’m also like that. From what I understand, I think “Sword Art Online II” has no relationship or anything in terms of stories or anything related. That only happens unless the story which it showed in this anime isn’t much different, even worse. So, this is my review of “Sword Art Online II”.

This second season seems like to have much random stuff starting from the story and the characters recognition. But, we’ll take some good parts and throw away the garbage. Now, I’m just afraid of how the fanbase known for its brutality. They can’t understand someone’s opinion. In fact, I saw many AniTubers reviewing this series. But, I just can’t stand with the comment section. So, the first thing I would emphasize is this is just an “opinion.” Opinion is just an opinion. No matter if some people agree with it or not.

So, the story is set after the event in the original series. The main character, Gary Stu, and his friends just found a new incident in a virtual reality PvP game called Gun Gale Online or GGO. A player who calls himself “Death Gun,” or should I just say the Darth Vader wannabe (because there are several references including lightsabers), appears to kill well-known players by shooting them in-game. Gary Stu was recognized to play the game and try to investigate the murder. As with the first season, “Sword Art Online II” divided into two arcs. There are GGO arc and Mother’s Rosario arc (which the second arc is the most promising in this series but it fails for several reasons).

First of all, I’m just surprised if this anime knew for or is not serious in responding to a murder case. I just don’t know a young teenager who always playing video games assigned to a murder investigation in a video game. It just has a ridiculous or barely a question. Let me fix the problem. Because he is the main character, he is Gary Stu. So, he once again held on the stage and met one heroine he hired to join Kirito’s harem club. That’s just excessive but it’s real. So, this heroine is Shino Asada a.k.a. Sinon. I wanna just admit that she is one of the cool introducing characters. She has enough role in this arc, has a tragic background, and most importantly, she also has a feeling towards Kirito.

Well, what do you expect? By the way, this arc also introduced with the Kirito’s avatar became a woman. “He” acted like a cute woman thing as well for just no apparent reason whatsoever. We don’t care about other characters because they are just cameos. It just passes through in the story. Did I say, story? No. What I mean is they just cameo as Alfred Hitchcock, the master of suspense, always did in his every movie. That is just unnecessary.

The second arc is the best from all, saddest, and most emotional in this anime. As usual, Sinon, who originally focused on her character, got a decent portion of various characters. It could be said to be well-developed just to become other same heroines as well. And all the other heroines be like: “Hey Sinon, join us with this club. We’ll always be together and will remain next to Kirito-kun. We will hang-out together while talking cool stuff about Kirito-kun and be fantasize about making love with him.” – Signed, all rejected heroines

Just like all the doujinshi you always read it. You certainly know what would happen next. There are some things I consider good from this season. The answer is, Kirito isn’t the main character but is Asuna. So, what do we think about her? She was so useless after meeting Kirito and my impression feel left on her character. I thought she was the coolest character ever, just from her introduction. However, Asuna is so different in this series as there is a magic talent from the author. She isn’t Mary Sue. We’ll be introduced with Yuuki Konno a.k.a. Zekken, the main character and main point in this arc.

Although it’s not like Mary Sue who is also able to defeat Kirito in a PvP duel arena, she isn’t an OP character. You have sympathy for her character, emotional depth about her circumstances, and her purpose of why she playing ALO. This is one of the heartbreaking stories. It works in both the character development, just like Sachi as the plot device for Kirito in the first season. But, my problem with this arc there is no connection whatsoever. I don’t know why this arc, Yuuki Konno, and his friends were quickly introduced. In addition, this arc is also forgettable because it has no relationship to the main story. But, it’s not wrong if this arc also exists. I admit this is the perfect frame of this second season. Like I said, throw away the trash! Take the valuable ones!

The animation is quite the same as well as the first season. I have the same opinion for the animation and visuals, especially in the first arc. It seems dystopian to the GGO world. My issue is the opening theme songs. It really tells much spoilers regardless of the song is also as good and memorable as the first season. At least, A-1 Pictures still gives the best in this aspect. It works quite well at this point. I also have to emphasize this if they also like Sinon’s ass more than anything. Not Asuna, Suguha with her milky, or other heroines. They really liked Sinon’s ass beyond anything.

Like the animation, the sounds are pretty good by the way. The sound effect to the small detail is just awesome. Yuki Kajiura still takes a part in the music and the soundtrack which just works well as the first season. The opening theme songs such as “IGNITE” by Eir Aoi and “courage” by Haruka Tomatsu are great and memorable. I like to hear over and over because it’s pretty catchy. “Startear” by Luna Haruna is same as well, along with “No More Time Machine” and “Shirushi” by LiSA.

For all the characters, I think is just the same as the first season. All the support characters both main heroines, other heroines, and other characters adore Kirito as their God. I mean, Kirito only exist in the first arc with Sinon’s well-development character. But, just like other heroines. Sinon is not a special case in this series. She has a tragic background, I admit, being betrayed, and some other emotional stuff. Except, she shouldn’t have a feeling towards Kirito.

Yuuki Konno is a character who doesn’t have any reason to fill up the main story. The arc is easily forgotten and not too serious so it only becomes a part of the next season. But, she is the most emotional and heartbreaking character arc of all. Her first introduction, I bet, is so annoying. Her relationship with Asuna was also very dramatic especially when approaching the climax. She was invited to go to the outside world with Kirito and ended with happiness thing ever that she had never forgotten. This arc is like riding on a fast train. It’s too fast if you say a plot because it’s just done like there’s nothing more to tell for the last episode.

Until this step, is “Sword Art Online II” really worth it and sounds nice? Do we really need a second season? It just depends on you because this is no different than a decent show but with a different title. Another term is a spin-off because I don’t see any connection between the first season. The second arc is the most pointless. It just comes out of nowhere which you can’t describe what is the most relevant feeling when watching it. The show has a pace which is on balanced. But for some reason, I begin to appreciate the first season rather than the second season. Not too bad but the first season takes the whole cake for the entire series. This is just according to my opinion. Some people like it because of this or that, but they also hate it for any reason.

“Sword Art Online II” is not the whole mess up but it’s bad when comparing to the first season. It makes no difference with the first series, which is the same. Some of the specific scenes also make us heartfelt and heartbreaking but in this anime, it only takes place in an instant way. The character recognition is easily forgotten and just thrown away from there. In fact, the appearance from the beginning was so well-development without anyone interrupting their characters. As always, this is just an opinion because I’m so afraid of how to deal with one of its hardcore. In various aspects, this anime also doesn’t have a heavy theme where you can enjoy it without a loop. “Sword Art Online” has nothing to do with the whole story and the characters but the art and the music are great, by the way.