Sword Art Online II – 22

SAO 2-22-002

Can Yuuki have one more adventure?

Welcome back to the Full Dive, everyone! Wow, did everyone come out of this one, alright? I think you have to be made of stone not to have shed at least one tear while watching. Well, I watched it three times, and now I get to write about it… I might be a bit drained by the end.


SAO 2-22-001

Love the composition of the shot

I wanted to start off by talking a bit about some of the medical science surrounding the drama; there’s enough for this episode to qualify as medical drama for all intents. First, those sorts of shows play very fast and loose with medical science. I recall an MD writing pages about how House got it all wrong within a day of an episodes airing. Well mostly wrong, he gave credit where it was due. That’s what I’m interested in the most.

As in many countries, it is a difficult issue to talk about, and prejudice, being what it is, is not isolated to one country. Now, since Yuuki’s mother did not get a test result until much later after her twin’s were born, and with the awful political regulations, world-wide, to regulate clean blood supplies. It’s not an impossible scenario to see a whole family infected with the virus. I find that I cannot say the exact ways here, I don’t wish to be morbid. Now, we do have an out, in that Yuuki’s version is a really bad one, so that makes it easier to make the drama more complex. The one thing I cannot get a clear case on is what will make her case terminal. I don’t think it’s is the opportunistic infection driven by her body’s own micro-ecology. Sadly, there are many other ways for this to be terminal, and this one was chosen for the it’s ease of explanation. Again,  I find myself unable to report on the other ways here.

SAO 2-22-004

Would you put yourself here?

The best take-away I got from this episode was how it imagines us living in a virtual world. In the original Sword Art Online, we dealt with the issues of being trapped against your will in a virtual world; and where being killed there was the same as being killed in the “real world”. We also dealt with the nature of what we call reality, what is a virtual danger and reward, and a few others. This gets flipped around with Yuuki and the Sleeping Knights. This game won’t kill them, and though they may literally be dying while playing, they are also living the best they can, following their own dreams and hopes.

I want the last page to be the adventure I had with you

SAO 2-22-003

Never assume you’ve turned the last page

Anyone can skip to the end of a book and find out how it all turns out. That still tells you very little about the road traveled to get there. Now, this is where I am having trouble getting some clear thoughts down. I love how they made everything about Yuuki’s experience in the Full Dive seem so final, that she was ready to say goodbye, because she felt satisfied, that she had found her peace of mind, and was able to let go. She and her Sleeping Knights left a lasting impression on the world that came to mean so much to them. I’m having trouble imagining the bravery it takes to face this. I guess you want to see at least one important thing to come to an end, because you know that you have the final ending to face sooner rather than later. They put that into such a great Aoi Yuki performance And that would have been a fine thing to end on that note. But then they turn that on it’s ear, and gave her the possibility of one more adventure to go on.

sao 2-22 hug

Yeah, we all need a hug now, don’t we?

Whew, well I made it. Feel a bit drained. While it wasn’t the big, ugly, snotty cry I had over AnoHana, it was close. But with how I feel and how I think this story will play out, I might not want to put the box of tissues away just yet. The other great take-away I got from this was the idea of how technology, given the right circumstances and set of hands to use it, can break out of it’s borders and find new applications. Even with the tone of the episode being one of sadness, I found that the new use of the Dive tech to be inspiring and given how Asuna leads us out and on to some coming developments, we have a small measure of hope. Perhaps even a large measure….


All around nerd that enjoys just about any anime genre. I love history, politics, public policy, the sciences, literature, arts...pretty much anything can make me geeky...except sports. Follow me @theskylion
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33 Responses to “Sword Art Online II – 22”

  1. Di Gi Kazune says:

    You’re talking about politedissent.com aren’t you. House still was the better medical drama among ER and the other one that I can’t be bothered to remember. Yes, they took liberties and accelerated time to get the results faster, otherwise it’d be boring. OTOH, they screwed it up big time at the end of season 7.


    Season 8 was just an exercise in selfimplosion.

    Re: Terminal illness – that is why we should devote resources into practical applications like transfer of consciousness into machines and cybernetics instead of wasting money on politicians and useless wars.

  2. Di Gi Kazune says:

    Someone feed spammy his meds: spammy is acting up again.

  3. Foshizzel says:

    Because I’m feeling lazy ill just copy and paste what I left on a video review of the episode via Youtube!

    SAO2 you almost got me! ALMOST! Sure it was sad and ill admit it got me a little teary eyed when the doctor was explaining Yuuki’s condition, but i sort of already figured out that she had a terminal disease cause what else would make someone say “I want one good memory before I leave.” which set off flags of oh right! Yuuki and the others are probably dying? That said at least SAO2 explained what she had instead of making up some random anime disease and I think the creator probably had a friend in irl that had a battle with Aids? Either way at least he got that in without again making it some made up disease.

    Was this the best SAO arc? Personally I did not see the hype for it, but ill will guess the new generation of anime fans never saw stuff like Clannad, Angel Beats, Air, AnoHana and Madoka Magica which I feel had better emotional scenes even though every fan has their own view on “feels” anime and ill even throw Yuuki Yuuna wa Yuusha de Aru episode 10 into the mix because WOW that had lots of raw emotion; however I know a few people that would call those “forced emotion.” like myself who feels that final scene in AnoHana was a bit much…

    Also Yuuki’s story ties perfectly into what Kirito has planned for Yui aka bringing her into the real world because the ED shows Asuna with a camera thingy on her shoulder which I assume is Yuuki? Id guess if she died they could download her mind into a new avatar? Either way it can work because “anime” can do anything LOL

    Overall 6/10 for me for this arc!

    • Wanderer says:

      I can now conclude that you are a heartless monster who must never be allowed into society. >:(

      • Foshizzel says:

        LOL damn I don’t know how you came to that conclusion but whatever I get that SAO is going to be defended as AWESOME by casual fans anyway.

        • Di Gi Kazune says:

          most casual fans defend a lot of mediocre stuff as awesome. Like naruto, bleach, dbz etc2.

          *goes back to enjoying the two pages of panchiraism in the NGNL guidebook*

          • BlackBriar says:

            most casual fans defend a lot of mediocre stuff as awesome. Like naruto, bleach, dbz

            DBZ is classic, Naruto has its own thing going for it but as a mid level shounen fan, I’ve never been on the Bleach bandwagon.

          • Foshizzel says:

            @DiGI Yeah pretty much I just mean’t that as a general thing I tend to see with any SAO fan the moment anyone is negative about their series they are quick to run to defend it; however I was just giving my opinion on the recent arc and how I felt about it! I guess that wasn’t what wanderer saw? LOL I guess that comes back to the newer anime fans who haven’t seen a lot of the older stuff so of course they treat SAO as the next word of god because or something! Oh yeah the light novel did it better blaw blaw blaw.

            @BB true that is the case! Naruto fans tend to be some of the worst, but every fanbase as rabid fans…

            • Wanderer says:

              Since you seem to be jumping to conclusions, I have, in fact, seen several of those series you listed. I simply don’t see why having seen something else that was well-written to be sad should prevent me from feeling similarly sad here.

            • JPNIgor says:

              Guys… Uuuh… Let people hate stuff, let people love stuff… It’s not like everyone has the same taste, right?

              There are even people who love that Girlfriend Beta stuff… Will you kill them because they love something as horrible as that? .-.

            • Di Gi Kazune says:

              There are even people who love that Girlfriend Beta stuff… Will you kill them because they love something as horrible as that? .-.

              If only to put them out of their misery? Then yes. 😀

            • Highway says:

              Girlfriend Beta is a nice show to watch. And I like that it confirms my biases: All those seiyuu, and they pick Saori Hayami to be the singer in the band and sing the main vocals on the OP song.

            • Foshizzel says:

              @Wanderer Well I feel those other series were better written when it came down to the big OH MY GOD x character has x problem and how that character dealt with their problem, but we clearly have different views on this and that is fine so ill move along.

        • Wanderer says:

          Who gives a crap about “AWESOME” or about the series as a whole? This arc is simply emotional, powerful, and moving, and your inability care about it marks you as so jaded and unfeeling that you should not be trusted to interact with humanity.

          • skylion says:

            To be fair, I don’t think Fosh has ever really dished bad on this particular episode. He feels it. But only in the most minor of fashions.

            So heartless monster? Let’s just leave that for Aki-lucky shall we?

          • Foshizzel says:

            Sure for you maybe it was powerful and emotional, but not everyone is wired the same when it comes to reacting towards certain things like sad anime moments some people just don’t have the same reactions.

            Me Jaded? Nope I just don’t buy into all the SAO hype because even before the series aired people were already proclaiming SAO2 as “THE BEST” because of this arc alone and with two episodes left I don’t think it will WOW me.

    • JPNIgor says:

      Ah, Fosh… You’re only at the tip of the iceberg… is what I’m hoping.

      • Foshizzel says:

        Maaaybeeee! With two episodes left I think the SAO train has left for me long long ago! I liked parts of this arc namely the action and fighting animation…

        • JPNIgor says:

          Yeah, you like exactly what I kind of don’t like here, hahaha. With the over the top face expressions at fights (remember Kirito x Eugene?) and seeing other examples of better fighting scenes, I have to say that I like it less than the other stuff on SAO.

  4. shuyafay says:

    Personally, I think this Mother’s Rosario arc is pretty good. I didn’t expect much from this series after the bland excalibur arc, but the feels really got me this time. TvT

    • skylion says:

      I admit to feeling the same way. GGO was way to bombastic for me, and Calibre was quite bland. But when they do this stuff, I think they are the better for it…

  5. BlackBriar says:

    Quite a sad scenario, indeed. Now Yuuki’s previous near breakdown crying sessions make sense and after what transpired in the episode, it’s definitely warranted. Also clear on why they call themselves the “Sleeping Knights” as they’re basically heading towards an eternal sleep.

    I know I’m playing against the odds but hopefully there’s some way to keep Yuuki and the other members alive for a longer period of time.

    • skylion says:

      They probably could, but I find myself siding on the needs of what the afflicted feel. Keeping them around is more for the survivors; and can be not entirely emphatic to the afflicted. Yeah, my parents are in the Winter of Years, we’ve had some talks.

      • Highway says:

        I think it entirely depends on the state and situation they’re in. In Yuuki’s case, I don’t think there’s any selfishness on the part of others in prolonging her life the way they have. She seems to be enjoying her life just as much as a lot of other people do. If the technology exists to escape her wreck of a body, and allow her to live with the vitality that she desires, I can’t see anything at all wrong with that, and would hope that it could apply to as many people as possible.

        I also love the whole idea of the Sleeping Knights. I just wish that they had been written to be more open to Asuna, especially about inviting her to the guild. I guess it’s that “We’re trying to save you from pain” kind of thing, but Asuna knows that the time is limited, and it doesn’t matter why they stop being in the game, they’re still just as gone. All their actions did was prevent more good memories from being made.

        • JPNIgor says:

          I agree with Highway. Yuuki’s condition is pretty much optimal for a patient with terminal disease. It’s not like she’s suffering or feeling pain living like that. The most she suffers is emotionally, since she keeps thinking on the day she will leave everyone.

          • Highway says:

            Something else that was kind of ambiguous: They’re hinting that Yuuki’s time is limited, and kind of hinting that she’s looking at (let’s say) 3 months to live, but that time frame is from her saying “two (or maybe 3, I can’t recall exactly) of us have only a few months left”. So it’s not definite that the next to die will be Yuuki.

            I do think that the “we’re going to disband and go our separate ways when the next person dies” is an idea that an under-30 year old would think is cool and all, but I’ll say right here that it’s completely unrealistic when you’re talking about humans who are facing mortality. That’s something that kids who are thinking they are invincible would say. And I’m not saying that Yuuki and the others are being stupid. This is one I’m putting on Kawahara, in that he just doesn’t realize that while it sounds cool to go out in a blaze of glory, for what reason would the others go along with that? Why would the others voluntarily exile themselves? I can see breaking up the guild, but that doesn’t explain not being friends with Asuna. That indicates they’re going to abandon the game. Why do that?

            • skylion says:

              Ah, at last someone brought this up. I had two paragraphs on the subject myself. Wrote them probably three times. I hammered on it, until I felt it was right, and it still didn’t.

              I didn’t put anything on Kawahara though….

            • JPNIgor says:

              Aaaah, I’m trying to hold back, you know? >.<'

              Well, just watch it. You could probably understand if you did. Remember that Dr. Kurahashi(?) said that while it could be used for terminal illnesses, it could be used to other diseases. With that said, it doesn't explain much. I can say that as far as I know, all of the Sleeping Knights are terminal patient, and that in anime and in the future, anything can happen…

              Show ▼

      • Di Gi Kazune says:

        OH… She has HIV.

        Modern advances with anti-retrovirals mean that the survival rate for HIV persons is much better. Mind you the side-effects are worse than the disease. Plus HIV doesn’t kill; its the co-infections that result from the immunodeficiency that do. Hepatitis B is worse with basically no viable treatment option.

        What kills the most is the Stigma associated with HIV.

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