Don't you just hate spoilers? I do, too. That's why I always try to include warnings. However, I sometimes ramble a bit too much here or there and maybe a few (or many) key plot points slip without me giving proper notice. So I'd like to include a blanket spoiler warning for the weary internet travelers of the world: Here There Be Spoilers. You've been warned.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Sword Art Online "Extra Edition"

It's been over a year since I watched Sword Art Online for the first time. A whole year. It was one of my favorite anime from the ones I watched in 2014 and I even stated in my review how excited I was for the second series to come out in July of 2014. Now it's July of 2015 and I've only just gotten around to watching the recap movie. 

Time moves differently for me, okay?

And, yes, this is a recap movie. Not an episode, but an actual movie. The timing is an hour and forty minutes and only about thirty minutes of that is anything original. 

Since it has been a while since I watched the previous series I was faced with either watching the series again or watching the recap movie. I was going to watch the recap movie anyway no matter what, but I did toy with the idea of saving the movie until after I finished re-watching season one. Instead I just went with the movie. 

It's an adequate refresher for my memories, but not much else. Kazuto talks about his experiences with the first two games while the girls have a swimming day and talk about their own memories meeting Kazuto. The fanservice from the bikini shots is nice and the original mission at the end is okay, but if I had started watching this movie immediately after finishing the first series I would have been bored out of my mind. 

It really is a tedious recap, but it doesn't quite convey how epic the first series really was to me. So while it did cover all of the events I didn't remember (which was most of them), the way this movie played out made everything seem too ordinary. 

Obviously, this recap movie doesn't mean to be a substitute for the first series and this isn't for new fans. Most of this just won't seem interesting to anyone that hasn't seen the first series because it's largely out of context. But it isn't for anyone that knows their SAO stuff, either. Because if you know your stuff then this will be 100 minutes of your life you'll never get back. 

So that leaves people like me, I guess. I take such long breaks between stories sometimes that a refresher seems inevitable. This movie does the trick while making me want to continue with my journey and curse myself for putting off Sword Art Online II for so long. 

So what is this movie to me? Or anyone? Well, I guess this movie is a 100 minute commercial for the series. The advertising slogan being, "Remember how awesome this series was? Well, this time it has bikinis. Yeah, we put a beach episode in this motherfucker. So you know you have to watch."

You play a mean game, SAO. One mean game. 

P.S. - This movie is going to kick off my marathon of anime sequels. Psycho Pass II, Knights of Sidonia II, Tokyo Ghoul II, and Log Horizon II have been put to the top of my respective queues. Should be fun to watch and to review. 

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