Sword Art Online: Alicization Episode 15 Review/Recap
When we last left off, Eugeo and Kirito had just gotten back their swords and had a mission: to get to the top of the Central Cathedral, rescue Alice, and beat the stuffing out of Quinella. But they have a hundred floors to climb before they can do that. Then they ran into these two little girls.
Those two little girls say that they are Linel and Fizel, two sisters-in-training in the Axiom Church. They were supposed to stay inside their rooms while the Integrity Knights fought, but they snuck out. Also, they stab and paralyze Kirito and Eugeo because they’re actually Integrity Knights.
Several years ago, Quinella was experimenting with bringing the dead back. So she had a bunch of kids kill each other and then brought them back. Yeah. In the end, Linel and Fizel were the only ones who survived that experiment, so Quinella pulled the plug and let the girls become Integrity Knights in training. They captured Kirito and Eugeo to prove they could become full-fledged Knights and bring them all the way up to Floor 50.
That’s when Kirito reveals he was just faking being paralyzed. He pulled a Jotaro and realized right away that the girls were the enemy, so he cast a spell nullifying their blades.
While Eugeo waits for the paralysis to wear off, Kirito engages in an epic clash with the Vice Commander of the Integrity, Fanatio. There’s a lot of epic effects and sword fighting. Fanatio proves to be a dangerous opponent, wielding a sword forged from a thousand mirrors that can reflect energy. Through a bit of trickery, Kirito manages to knock Fanatio’s helmet off, revealing that she’s actually a woman.
Fanatio keeps her gender a secret because she’s insecure about her gender. No swordsman will take her seriously because she’s a woman, which she despises. Yet, as Kirito points out, she makes an effort to look after her appearance because she’s in love with the Commander of the Integrity Knights.
Having fought against and alongside tough girls like Asuna, Leafa, and Sinon for years, Kirito knows that gender has nothing to do with one’s skill, and refuses to hold back, actually earning Fanatio’s. Just when Fanatio has Kirito on the ropes, though, Eugeo’s able to move again and uses the Blue Rose Sword to freeze Fanatio in place. Even after all that, Fanatio stubbornly refuses to go down. It all comes down to a clash of wills: Fanatio’s will to fulfill her duty, and Kirito and Eugeo’s will to to protect Underworld. As the final clash begins, the episode fades to white and the credits play.
This episode had one of the better fights of the season. While short, I could tell that Kirito and Fanatio were fighting with everything they had. They even started grinning in the middle of their fight. When I see that happen in anime, that means that a characters enjoying the challenge.
I have to give props to Kirito for being the first person Fanatio’s ever met who didn’t hold back because of her gender. Given how half his friends are women who can kick ass, that’s not surprising. Heck, Asuna’s as good a swordsmen as Kirito!
As for the two little girls, while I knew that they were going to end up being small fry, I found their backstory to be interesting. The fact that Quinella was willing to resort to using kids for her twisted experiments only cements her spot on my “Anime Women I Loathe”. I’m looking forward to seeing how this ends next week.