Belwicket wrote: Vegedus wrote:
Belwicket wrote:I like SAO for the badass fights
There's like, 2 or 3. Only one I really liked in 24 episodes. They have an odd habit of skipping past
the fights. I think more than half the episodes don't have any real fights. Most of the time is spent on people talking about their MMO predicaments.
and the cute anime girls!
Ugh. I just like to keep my anime and porn separate. Well, okay, that's not entirely true, but I prefer fan-service to waif-u!/harem pandering. Fan-service doesn't actually affect the plot, whereas something like SAO revolves around sexual wish-fulfillment for the male readers.
And that's your opinion. I still loved the fight when Kirito and Asuna beat a boss with basically just the 2 of them. I don't remember if or how much help they had.
Yeah, this post is a week old, but the fact that SAO is regarded as the best anime of 2012 irks me to no end.
You want to know why Sword Art Online is criminally overrated and mediocre at best? Here are a few reasons:
1: Dreadful character development:
Let's look at Asuna for a second here because her "development" is the most egregiously written part of the show. When we first meet her, she is extremely shy an quiet. She's insecure about herself and barely agrees to group with Kirito for the first level raid. We then meet her again after some time has passed. She's become confident, independent and is second in command of the top guild. She even has a reputation among the players as one of the best players.
The problem is, we never see how this happened. We get a couple token explanations later (and I'll get to the one that implies that she only did anything because of Kirito), but we never see what happens after the first raid. What did she do after that? Who did she meet? How did she come into contact with members of the top guild? How did she rise in the ranks of that guild? What did she do to earn the respect of so many people? None of these questions are answered. I'd call it a violation of "show, don't tell," but we're not even TOLD about this.
Then we have Egil and Klein, who are two of seven characters in the entire first arc that are worth mentioning. Klein has no character development. At all. Egil is implied to have some development with an explanation of how he went against his own business ethics to help win a few mid level raids, but we're never shown what he did, only barely told. Why was this a big deal? After all, he's stuck in the game with everyone else. What made him do it if it is such a big deal? Again, these questions are never answered.
Character development in this show is awful. At best, it violates "show, don't tell," at worst, we either never even get an explanation or, as I'll explain in point #2, Kirito.
2: A blatant and almost laughable use of Women in Refrigerators
Let's look at episode 3, which is easily the worst episode. Kirito encounters a group of players and befriends them, particularly Sochie, who is extremely insecure and the only girl in the group. They go on adventures and are shown trying to convince poor little Sochie to do things she's uncomfortable with, but she's so innocent and sweet that she lets them push her around. Kirito bonds with her because he doesn't try to make her do things she's not comfortable with. Then they drag poor Sochie into a high level area where all of them except Kirito die because they rushed into a hidden room with lots of monsters. Kirito blames himself for this because he lied about his level and was arrogant. He becomes so distraught over Sochie's death (and it is just Sochie, not the group as a whole) that he foolishly goes to fight a high level monster alone because angst, only for Klein, his guild and some other guild to save him.
First and foremst, we have the fact that all of them of no consequence what-so-ever except Sochie and that Kirito is only affected by Sochie's death. This means that Sochie was introduced ENTIRELY to develop Kirito. Women in refrigerators was coined by comic writer Gail Simone to describe this very thing. Sochie is portrayed as a potential love interest that caused Kirito to break out of his shell, only for everything to be crushed for no reason other than to give him angst.
Not to mention that Kirito is a fucking moron. He claims that Sochie died because he was “arrogant.” Except that he lied about his level because he didn't want to be seen as above the group, tried to keep them from going into the high level dungeon and tried to warn them aout the hidden room. It was the group that was arrogant, not him.
3: The unendingly awkward and creepy “romance” between Kirito and his goddamn cousin that was ultimately pointless in the first place due to being doomed from the start because Asuna:
That sentence should be enough to explain this point.
4: General misogyny:
Following the usage of women in refrigerators, we have a few other examples of egregious misogyny. First, why does literally every named female character except for one (who was the antagonist of episode 4) fall in love with Kirito? Is it because Kirito does good things for all of them? No. One of them is his cousin, who was raised along side him as a sister and two of them only meet him briefly. No, it is because the writer wanted him to have a harem and wrote it as awkwardly and hamhanded as possible.
Then there's the fact that Asuna is molested and nearly raped on screen no less than four times for no reason than to show that the second arc's villain is a psychopath and a horrible monster. Yeah, I really hope I don't have to explain why that's a problem.
5: The entire thing feels like little more than a .hack fanfic:
The premise is basically .hack without the weird supernatural elements. I like the twist that the story (at least for the first arc) is more about waging war against the GM, but aside from that one twist, there's nothing that really makes it stand out from being derivative of .hack.
6: Speaking of that interesting premise, the fact that it can't stick to that premise:
While episodes 4, 5 and 6, as well as the attempted social examination present in the whole show could have made interesting filler, the premise is decidedly about people trapped in a fantasy world where their only hope is to win a war against someone who is effectively god. And, in the first arc, which makes up 14 episodes, how many episodes are actually relevant to this premise? Seven or eight of them. Half of the show is either filler or non-filler that advances subplots. I commend the second arc for making sure that it sticks to its actual story, but that arc was ruined by the awful romance subplot that was pointless and doomed in the first place and the numerous moments of sexism.
That said, the show isn't outright terrible. The premise has promise and the animation and character designs are great, but I can't excuse anything with this many massive issues.