I’m reminded of last week’s Fairy Tail in the sense of when a scene of someone probably dying works really well and SAO as a case where it really doesn’t have the same impact. I’ll give props to SAO for continuing to try and keep their cliffhangers going during this key moment of the series, but it’s just not going to work as well here. Sinon after all is one of the main characters of this GGO arc. She’s obviously not going to die. And since you can’t take a single bullet without dying she obviously wasn’t shot. Unless of course already freaking out and being exposed to that gun gives her some hax immunity.
Thus we are pretty much left just with wondering who shot at who. The most obvious assumption is that Kirito shot at Death Gun. That backs him off and Kirito goes into badass mode charging at the guy in a crazed state. The other possibility is that Sinon somehow recovered and took a shot at Death Gun. Less likely since she did just drop her gun, but we saw in her flashback that in a crisis she might act on reflex so possible for her still to shoot him. Now maybe Death Gun actually did shoot, but Sinon has already disconnected due to triggering her own panic attack there. She temporarily vanishes, Kirito goes into a crazed attack and then she returns in time to help out.
Now aside from my issues with cliffhangers, this was a really good episode. They did manage to slip some action in there and they did continue to push the plot. I appreciate the fact that Kirito and Sinon did try to logically deduce which player was Death Gun. It was a fair conclusion since he was the only one there and there was no way that Death Gun was hiding in the water. Now if anyone should have predicted whatever camouflage Death Gun has it would be Sinon who is familiar. But it again must be some super rare item which is probably why she didn’t consider it or know about it. I suppose it’s possible that however Death Gun is hacking things so he can kill people he might have found a way to cheat and make himself temporarily invisible.
Sinon is certainly in a really bad situation for all sorts of reasons. She’s already freaking out since she’s seeing that gun again. It’s not necessarily that the gun is here, but that thanks to talking to Kirito it is “real.” Since she can actually die from it, it has crossed that line and will be a problem for her to keep calm. I give her props for still being able to reach for her pistol in that kind of situation. She knows this guy is a bit of a drama queen so he’ll take his time in actually shooting her, which is enough time for a counter attack.
Action wise we had a lot of fun here. Kirito going all Yoda with blocking the bullets aiming for him and Sinon was fun. No matter how you look at it, light sabers are pretty awesome and it suits Kirito really well. Now if only the other side had some blasters he could knock some strikes back at them, but then they might really be crossing some legal lines XD.
I’m going to completely admit for whatever reason I’ve been really hard on Kirito in this arc. No idea why really. But maybe part of it is because it seems like there is good potential for a dual lead in this arc. Sinon has seemed to be a fairly even character at least in terms of potential. Also someone carrying a pretty heavy trauma around and at least to start off is a bit of a loner. This next episode I feel is going to be crucial in determining whether she can maintain that status or if she’s just going to slip into being another damsel in distress. I think it’s too late for her to avoid being snagged into the harem, but that second point is up in the air.
Right now Sinon is in a vulnerable position, but not one that it’s impossible for her to get out of. The easiest development is Kirito charging in there and saving her which is ok since he’s the MC and a pretty fun guy to watch when he snaps. But it would be nice if she can maintain some individual strength. After all partners work when both sides are pulling some weight. If it’s just Kirito and she’s only helping out a little it won’t be as great as it could be. Somehow I want them both to give Sinon that development while also letting Kirito go nuts. Will see if they can pull that off XD.
It’s been a while since we saw the harem + Klein. I might be weird, but I thought it was kind of silly how Asuna immediately recognized that this guy was from SAO. I mean yeah she probably saw him a few times, maybe even during that LC raid….but it felt like a stretch. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t instantly recall people that I barely interacted with. Fair I’ve never been in a life or death situation, but I’m still calling it as a stretch. At least Klein had that phrase which was the phrase from the LC leader to work with. He used some fairly solid logical deduction to figure out that this guy was a part of LC, probably high up in the organization but below the leader.
Now it was interesting to get the viewpoints on that group as they watched the matches and put together what was going on. A good pun at Kirito’s expense a few times there. Not a surprise but Asuna is going to go wring some information out of Kirito’s boss to find out what insane situation he’s gotten himself into. And maybe if they survive all this she can knock the crap out of him for hiding the situation and picking up another harem member after they already started dating XD.
Clearly we’re moving right into the key episodes for this arc now. Should be fun to see the big showdowns against Death Gun and the eventual fight with Kirito and Sinon to decide this championship. There’s no time to slow down and the next episode should be plenty hectic. There is pretty well 0% chance of Sinon dying here so we’re lacking that tension, but how things are going to start off next episode is a decent mystery. I’m hoping when Kirito gets his chance to go after this guy they can use some of the classic SAO music since it does work well when Kirito goes into that combat mode.
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