Sword Art Online Alicization (Season 3)- Is this SAO’s redemption?

The Sword Art Online anime series started the MMORPG trend. It took the world by storm and easily gathered millions of avid fans across the globe. The biggest TV station in our country even featured SAO during its heyday telling how anime fans of all ages are getting hooked to Kirito and Asuna’s love story. Fast forward a couple of years after the first season, SAO seems to be losing its edge. Many dropped it saying that the story failed to emphasize what viewers want, which is more time with the couple together as well as more RPG-inspired fights. What SAO has been continuously doing is introduce new female leads and forcing them into Kirito’s harem. This approach has been proven to be unpopular among SAO fans. And the continuous decline of SAO’s popularity through the years is a clear indication that viewers are not happy of how the whole story is going from one season to another. Nevertheless, the third season, Sword Art Online Alicization, is quite promising. For the first time, Kirito is not adventuring in a new virtual world with another girl but a young boy who aims to save his childhood friend. Does this indicate that the people behind SAO is listening to its loyal patrons? Doe Sword Art Online Alicization live up to the hype?

 

 

Visuals: 4/5

 

They completely overhauled the SAO animation. This is expected since they hired a new animation studio to do the work. Many are not happy about this but it’s not really a big deal for me. Yes, it turned out a little bit childish because of the colors and drawing style but it’s not that bad.

 

 

Voice Acting: 4/5

I’m not a fan of Kirito’s voice especially when he screamed as the goblin leader cornered him. It almost sounded like a girl being harassed and pleading for help. I prefer male heroes to have a deeper voice. I know they are complimenting Kirito’ voice with his thin and small physique but I’m sure he’ll turn out to be more lovable and manly with a deeper one.

 

Watch the Official Trailer Here:

Characters: 3/5

Eugeo and Alice Schuberg are just two of the many new characters introduced in the third season of Sword Art Online. Sadly, they’re not as unique an interesting as we expect them to be. Eugeo resembles the old Kirito. He belittles himself after failing to save Alice from being apprehended by an Integrity Knight. And Alice is like the new Asuna. She was punished for defying a taboo and had her memory replaced with fake ones. This story and character development are basically re-imagined versions of what we saw in the second season of SAO where Kirito saves Asuna from being kidnapped. The added new game-like skills, rules, and the mysteries behind the antagonists that are ruling the fantasy world made the story quite interesting at first but once they are all revealed, you’ll realize that you’re served with food made while following the same old recipe.

 

 

Plot progression (as of 13 episodes): 3/5

I have no problem about the pace of Sword Art Online Alicization. It’s not so fast to the point of skipping fine details about the story and not slow enough to bore viewers. But why is its score just 3? The main reason behind this is the fact that I am 13 episodes in yet the main antagonist is still yet to be established. At first, I thought it was the people behind the project that uses a virtual world to develop new souls but they were simply doing it to improve the government’s military force and save real lives in the near future. Kirito might not like their way of thinking but their acts are not despicable enough to be considered villains. The church in the fantasy world where Kirito is trapped is a good candidate for being the main antagonist but the leader who is pulling all the strings is yet to be introduced. When will they reveal it? I know it is part of making the show thrilling but keeping it a secret halfway through the story is overdoing it.

 

 

Is it a Nay or Yay? Borderline Yay!

Is it the saving grace of the SAO anime series? Sword Art Online Alicization is very promising but not good enough to fully lift the franchise to its former glory. Or maybe I’m concluding to early? We’ll see. I’m rooting for SAO Alicization’s success though. I want it to have a clear conclusion like the first season while leaving a few loose ends to hint a continuation. And because of this glimmer of hope, I’m giving it a borderline yay! I won’t put an effort in introducing this anime to my friends but I won’t have any qualm in recommending and giving it a decent remark if they ask.

 

Sword Art Alicization Photos:

 

 

There you have it guys!  When everything is all said and done, the SAO anime franchise is still one of the most successful to date.  Although its second season failed to reach everyone’s expectations, we should not put all the blame to the creators.  Maybe our standards skyrocketed after enjoying the first season so much to the extent that everything new and different introduced in the second season all ended up being compared to the first and were all hated as a result.  Before you watch Sword Art Online III, I suggest to open your mind.  Forget about your first season experience and treat it as a new anime as a whole with familiar characters you’ve learned to love following a different story line.  By doing so, you’ll diverge from the path of comparing every bit of detail in the new anime series with its predecessors and enjoy it more. Give it a try and don’t just dump it after a one or two episodes like I did at first.  You’ll surely see that it delivers a new taste and is worth your time!  As always, give us a LIKE and continue to SHARE the anime love mina!