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Yeah......Sword Art Online may have been neglected by me.

In all fairness, I thought ShonenBeat would be able to finish off blogging SAO episodically but then real life took precedent. Unfortunately that wasn't the only reason Sword Art Online wasn't picked back up by myself. The fall season came and it just forced this series to the back of the watch list.

Looking back at these 7 episodes, I can safely say the series took a turn for the worse. I had been enjoying SAO and thought the first part of the anime was pretty well done. Despite a questionable episode or two, it was keeping me interested and whilst I wasn't blogging it, I was keeping up to date.

Then came the Alfheim Online arc and I just lost interest. The main bulk of the story may have progressed in these episodes, but for me it was just a watch for the sake of completion type of deal. Not a good sign when you're watching anything really.

Funnily enough, it wasn't the change of setting. Yes SAO was more interesting when dying in the game meant death in real life, but that didn't have to be the main source of interest. Simply put, the Alfheim arc just didn't do it right; pacing issues, questionable plot choices and overall dulling of animation in fight scenes sealed SAO's fate.

I hate to think that I will remember the second half of SAO as one of sisters with brother complexes and attempted virtual rape. Unfortunately, that's exactly what I'll remember it for because nothing else stuck. The majority of the time the episodes dealt with Suguha's conflicted feelings for Kirito, Asuna's ongoing struggle in her prison and more of Kirito's insecurities.

At least the ending left something to be happier about. I'm glad that Kirito got to beat the crap out of Sugou, the one who deserved it more than anyone. The rest of the final episode was more or less okay, just a happy ending with nothing extraordinary.

Series Review

Whether you like it or not, Sword Art Online was the most talked about anime since the summer season. Light novel fans directed their hate at it, anibloggers made fun of it, MAL ranked it in the top 100 and as it got closer to ending, it dropped.

Sword Art Online will be remembered if nothing else. From the hype of its arrival all the way to the car crash ending, it was mostly an okay anime. Far from the best, yet not the worst thing I've personally seen and at times it did a pretty good job.

My biggest woe with Sword Art Online was its declining quality. The second half in particular just got progressively worse, bringing down the quality of the entire series. If the anime ended at episode 14. I'd probably be happier with it.