Anime Review – Sword Art Online II

SAO-II-(S)One. Two. Three Four Five. Everybody grab a gun and c’mon lets ride…

Yep. That Mambo N.5 appropriation pretty much sums up the first arc of SAO II. The only problem is the people driving seem to even more geographically challenged than me, and as the anime’s seemingly directionless take becomes apparent you’ll find yourself yelling ‘For fuck sake use a GPS’. Yep. This anime has trouble navigating itself.

But smash on the beaks and hop on out. Lets step back, shall we, and look at the bigger picture. Coming as a sequel to the original SAO I’d pull the words ‘hype’ and ‘expectations’ from my metaphorical hat. Whilst both were there the hype seemed to remain for far longer than my expectations – which were quickly pummelled into the ground. Ouch!

The sequel seemed to serve to accentuate the flaws of the original and downplay any strengths it had. Plot inconsistencies rose to new heights as what was seemingly at stake trudged lower than ever. Fanservice made an appearance at awkward moments and some of the motives behind peoples actions made as much sense as a giraffe eating a dinosaur. What? You say. What indeed.

Calm down Kirito. Let's keep this PG. Source: A-1 Pictures
Calm down Kirito. Let’s keep this PG.   Source: A-1 Pictures

But hey, it’s not all bad! Open those eyes and ears! The animation and sound were done well, and whilst I wasn’t fond of characterisation and development early it did get a better towards the end. SAO II is also a little special in that it has a unique charm to it, where you know it’s not the greatest thing out but somewhat enjoy it anyway.

We don’t want to be here forever, so lets sum up! This anime is a polariser. It has a lot of flaws and a couple of strengths. You might like it, you might not. The problems that exist in this anime are very in your face (similar to a non-scary ghost popping out in a haunted house). You can’t miss it. The question is, how much does it bother you?

Thank you for reading my review!

Rating: 5.5/10

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