Pacing Problems in Latest Alicization Episode
Sword Art Online: Alicization- War of Underworld Episode 27 Review/Recap
Given what I know about the latter half of Alicization, I hoped that the anime would turn itself around. That it would give more of the action that I wanted to see. While the last episode gave us more of the action, it’s back to the exposition here. Pacing problems have been a recurring problem with this season, but I’m still holding out hope for Alicization.
In a flashback, we learn the identity of the man leading the assault on the Ocean Turtle. His name is Gabriel Miller, and he got hired by the US Government to steal the AI Rath’s developing. They want to weaponize it so they can maintain their dominance in war. The team that Kirito fought in GGO in the first episode was them; they were practicing for the attack.
However, in the present day, Gabriel’s team is locked out of the area where the Fluctlight cubes are. Thus, they devise of an alternative way to seize their target (Alice). Soon, Underworld will go through “The Final Load Test”, where the barriers between the human empire and the Dark Territory will collapse. Finding two god level accounts in the Dark Territory, Gabriel and his lieutenant use them to log in and use the Dark Territory for themselves.
Meanwhile, Asuna decides to take matters into her own hands. She prepares to log into Underworld herself in order to find Kirito and protect Alice.
I get that exposition and flashbacks are important to moving the plot along, but when you use them too much, a show suffers. Pacing problems have been a big problem of Alicization, and I’m worried it will ruin the war to come. I want to see something as big as the final battle in Avengers: Endgame. Instead, we may get something “The Long Night” from Game of Thrones.
That said, this episode tries to fulfill its purpose, but it misses a few key details about Gabriel. In Tokyo, Sinon has a nightmare of when she fought him in the final round of GGO 4; he strangled her to death with his bare hands. Yet I think the show fails to show how much of a sociopath Gabriel truly is. The web and light novels talk about how he’s obssessed with the soul, and with Alice herself. I hope they show more about it, but if not, click here.
With Gabriel about to seize control of the Dark Territory, all out war is now inevitable. Fortunately, Asuna’s coming to rescue her boyfriend/husbando. Fans should know by now that nothing will stand between an angry Asuna and her goals. Pacing problems or not, I look forward to the war.
I Give “The Final Load Test” a 2.75/5
By the way, pay attention to Gabriel’s lieutenant, Vassago. We’ve seen him before, but I’m not giving any hints.
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