Sword Art Online Review — F


Kirito plays a new immersive MMO on its release day, but is trapped inside. If you die in the game, you die in real life.

I had a lot of fun watching this while I wrote my fanfiction, but if it weren’t for that, I would have hated this show. The first ten episodes are full of pointless and stupid side-stories, and that’s the best part of the show. After that, it turns into some silly romance (the show’s idea of romance is sharing inventory space… no, I am not making this up) and a story of rescuing the damsel in distress who is being raped by tentacle monsters.


The show’s biggest problem, though, is Kirito, the main character. He’s a swordsman all in black who is supposed to be the biggest badass on the planet, because he’s the only one in the game who can wield two swords at once (for no apparent reason, but SAO is a completely fair game). He’s unbelievably full of himself, and everyone loves him for no apparent reason.

Then Kirito and his girlfriend have a daughter who’s even more annoying than him (yes, that’s who he’s humping in the first picture). Next Kirito’s imouto shows up and tries to bang him too. The amount of sexual innuendo in this show is unbelievable.


The final villain (shown above) is even worse than all of these other characters. He kidnaps Kirito’s girlfriend so that he can marry him. He also wants to brainwash people and rule the world or something. Yeah… While he does this, Kirito is busy trying to “rescue” his girlfriend, but he just hits on his sister and other girls all the time. Oh, and for this part of the show everyone is a fairy with elf wings.

The light novels are supposed to be good. I find that really hard to believe.

  • Storytelling – F – The story is ridiculous, half the episodes are wasted, and Kirito…
  • Voice – F – Nothing stylistically makes it stand out.
  • Characters – F – Kirito… worst character ever. Setsuna F. Seiei level terrible. Totally full of himself, supposed to be a badass, self-insert character, but comes across as absolutely pathetic. Imouto and Yui are obnoxious. I would say Asuna is an awful character, but she’s more of an object than a person.
  • Attention Grab – B – Couldn’t tear my eyes away, I guess.
  • Production – C – Looks fine, although I seem to recall the first episode being way more impressive than the rest of the show.
  • Overall – F

Recommendations – .Hack//Sign, Guilty Crown

19 thoughts on “Sword Art Online Review — F

  1. I really enjoyed SAO personally but I had read the light novel before watching the show which maybe part of it… for example when I read “he’s the only one in the game who can wield two swords at once (for no apparent reason, but SAO is a completely fair game). ” when I read that I thought yeah, it was explained… though it might have been explained in the Novel not the Anime. (If your interested the explanation was that Duel wield could only be unlocked by someone with the highest dexterity in the game, the idea being that this person could then go up again the final boss and it would make it a fair fight between the two).

    The story in the light novel does leave a few gaps which are transparent in the series but when you bare in mind that the Novel was origionally written for a competition (though was never submitted as it was too long!) it makes a bit more sense.

    Info from Wikipedia: “Reki Kawahara wrote the first volume in 2002 as a competition entry for ASCII Media Works’ Dengeki Game Novel Prize (電撃ゲーム小説大賞 Dengeki Game Shōsetsu Taishō?, now Dengeki Novel Prize), but refrained from submitting it as he had exceeded the page limit. He instead published it as a web novel under the pseudonym Fumio Kunori.[3] Over time, he added three further volumes and several short stories.[4][5] In 2008, he participated in the competition again by writing Accel World, this time winning the Grand Prize. Aside from Accel World, he was requested to get his earlier work, Sword Art Online, published by ASCII Media Works.[3] Kawahara agreed and withdrew his web novel versions.[5] ”

    In my opinion it could have been better, but I did enjoy it. I hope they do continue it following the other Novels 🙂

    *awaits verbal kicking* 😉

    1. Unlocked by someone with the highest dexterity? Then why was Kirito the one with the highest dexterity? That doesn’t seem to make it any less fair to me…

      I don’t get how the fact that it was entered in a competition makes a difference. Shouldn’t he do some editing before he publishes it?

      I do agree that it could have been better. 🙂

  2. After a while I learned to appreciate this show simply BECAUSE it’s so unbelievably silly and stupid. The kind of thing you make fun of and crack jokes about with your friends. Not that I’ll ever be able to discuss it with people who genuinely like it (and I know a few, unfortunately), but there is some value in a show being so inept it ends up entertaining.

    Except episode 24. It was like an eclipse, and I couldn’t look directly at it for very long.

  3. Kuradeel: *stabs his stomach* “How does it feel? Huh? Huh?” *grind grind*
    Obeeron: *kicks Kirito* “There! There! *stabs him in the back* “Ha ha ha”

    I know it! They are twins! They even have the same expression!

    1. You’re right! They should practice swordplay with each other, I bet they’d have more fun than with Kirito. They’d fight over who gets to be on top though.

  4. What I like about Sword Art Online is its premise of a virtual-reality MMO the players spend all their time in, and the little details that it shows as it fleshes out that world. The game world details like teleporting, and player-killing and jailing, and the economy – they are interesting parts of the setting that I wouldn’t have thought of on my own. And the way the show has a lot of timeskips, but you don’t miss anything too important, gives the sense of scale of the time the people are trapped their, as well as the sense of the scale of the game world, which is still not fully explored in what we see.

    But I do agree that Kirito wins through dumb luck, breaking the rules because of his “spirit”, and other unfairness. And Kirito meets unbelievably many girls who end up loving him. Those parts are pretty silly.

    As for the romance, though, it is a clear exaggeration to say it’s just sharing inventory space with Asuna. I found some of the romantic portions, mainly the episode with the temporary partying and the sleep-guarding and the episode with the forest cabin vacation, sweet and charming. And though Asuna was trapped in a cage for the second part, rendering her pretty helpless and perhaps an “object” like you say, I like that she was competent enough to at least steal and deliver the key card.

    1. Look there’s a few great anime’s with that premise alone which are now being overlooked because of SAO. For example Overlord is a great anime where the player is trapped in a virtual reality game except its way different then Sao. You also have NO game No Life which is the same premise, but again has its charms. Both of those anime’s completely beat SAO in every category save for action as No Game No Life is beaten. SAO is a very cliche ridden anime save for the one premise that its in a virtual world where the players are trapped which again after season 1 is gone since now anyone can enter AOI and the gunworld.

      1. Actually, there were a number of anime where people were tracked in a virtual world way before SAO, such as the Dot Hack series. So it’s not particularly original in that regard either.

  5. This is shit. This review doesn’t make sense.
    I can see that you’re really jealous at Kirito, BTW it WASN’T a dumb luck BAAAKA
    he had the charisma.
    Rating Review- Z

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