CAFÉ NOTICE | Aftermath of Being Logged in ALO

Hello café-goers, how should I start this? Well, it’s evening here, so perhaps “Good evening, all!” or something to that effect. What I’m about to talk about is more on the serious side, but don’t worry, it’s that good kind of serious – that satisfactory seriousness that comes from adult praise, for instance. The topic? You read the title. I was logged into ALO for admittedly far too long, and you’ve probably realized that. Also, I lost a lot of you guys from my first anticipation post of the project, haha! What happened?!

I started to analyze Reki Kawahara’s Fairy Dance not by choice; I was sick and tired of nearly every goddamn anime fan beating up on SAO’s second half, and I had to change that by defending it as my sole right as a reviewer and a fan. We stick up for things we appreciate, see, and we also criticize the aspects that could’ve been better. But this was a defense series for the positive aspects, not the negative ones. I’m not saying Fairy Dance is pure gold – Oh gosh, no – but aren’t there other series out there begging to be picked apart like the literary vultures we are?

Now you probably think, “What about all those fans out there that praise SAO as the chief of all anime, huh? We must stop their ignorance!” Well, I agree, you can tear Sword Art Online limb from limb, whether that be the anime, the novels, or both, but the series’ problem is rooted in the the lead character himself, and sadly I can’t do much about that. However, I can point out a few of the cool tricks the series performed correctly. Hence, my motives for writing this.

This journey of 10,000 words starts with a single letter. Cheesy as it sounds, it is what it is. Clocking in at around 10,000 words altogether (parts I through this reflection), this is one of my greatest achievements as a blogger. A Word document this large is at risk of EXPLODING! Am I proud that I threw a sh*t ton of words on a page and called it an analysis? Not necessarily. I proclaim this to be one of my greatest achievements in blogging because this is my grandest collection of argumentative text on this blog. I dare say it means more to me than my reviews . . . This is a project I can look back on and actually feel really, really proud of the hours of work that went into this. I went into it thinking it would just be another review series. Hah, how little did I predict the longstanding effects it would come to have.

I realize this topic is taboo by bloggers, but here I go. “In Defense of Fairy Dance” had quite possibly one of the worst ‘statistical’ receptions on this blog – and THAT’S FINE. I believe it to be one of my highest of highs even though the number of likes and comments dictate it was one of my lowest of lows. It just means that you as a reader didn’t want to, well, read it, and that’s totally okay. Read what won’t waste your time, after all. That’s how I’ve always seen it. Just know that despite my efforts (and I don’t blame you AT ALL for not knowing the struggle), they ultimately mean so little, statistically. Thus, I’d like to extend my warmest thanks to those who stuck around, read, liked, commented – You know who you are. Thank you, it is an absolute joy reading your comments overflowing with your own responses and opinions!!!

If you’ve learned anything by now, it’s that Sword Art Online is a franchise rich with irony. Dramatic Irony ringin’ any bells? Gosh, we’ve beaten this horse quite dead. I won’t rattle on more, but I hope you’ve been able to take out this popular theme and apply it to other media. SAO doesn’t do anything particularly special with it; it just does a fantastic job working it into the story and characters. I also hope that, through reading this, you’ve been reinforced with the thought that “appearances aren’t everything.” Oh, it’s a juvenile theme, but one that applies itself here in many more ways than one.

Lastly, before I bow out of this enchanting land of fairies and bid the franchise farewell, I have one last lesson to reign it all in. You question, “What could possibly be more important than dramatic irony, Takuto???”

La vie est drôle

“Life is Funny,” eh?

You might recall this phrase rolling off the tongue of Ragyo Kiryuin from Kill la Kill, but its meaning is can be equally applied to the entirety of Sword Art Online.

A story of kids who finally get their hands on virtual reality, only to get trapped in it with death as the only escape.

How about when they finally do manage to return to the real world, and the main character’s lover has been relocated into another cage?

Or even when she gets out, and a mysterious marauder threatens to kill players in-game with one pull of his trigger?

Heck, even a girl struggling through terminal illness seeks refuge in the game world.

What about a blogger who expended his time, energy, and soul into a project that got less hits than his dinky little haul post? I think you get the picture.

When you look at it, life sure is funny, eh?

I’m using the wings I gained from ALfheim Online to soar to new heights. This experience has been troublesome, yet surprisingly a wake-up call much-delayed as well. I am still trying to work out a review format I am comfortable with, and this comprehensive review stuff has helped reduce my options (because at this point, I just can’t decide). Maybe now you’ll get to endorse yourself with tastier content. Or, perhaps, things could take a sour turn. Anything could happen, and so whatever does come our way, I’d like to reaffirm my thanks to all who have flown by my side during this journey. Don’t feel bad if you didn’t – I’m sure there’s a reason for your absence. Just know that we had a grand ol’ time here with dramatic irony, right fellows? Yeah, don’t answer that.

With more positive announcements on the horizon, I sincerely hope you have emerged as enlightened as I have! Keep on rolling with the punches, and until the next post, thank you very much for reading!

– Takuto, your host

Oh, before I leave, I’ll be dropping the headers for each section of the series below. You are encouraged to click on the image (if my computer’s not being fickle) to direct you to the page. Everything under “In Defense of Fairy Dance” will be compiled under the “Cafe Talk” section of the blog for future reference! 🙂

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15 thoughts on “CAFÉ NOTICE | Aftermath of Being Logged in ALO

  1. I knew I had to write something here when I saw this at the top of my Reader, even at the expense of all the rest of the replies I have to yet to get to & posts to read (including your final installment LOL) which I am afraid I don’t have the luxury of time to attend to for now.

    BUT YAY Takuto I really really loved this post and the fact that you feel enlightened now. As bloggers we all struggle between trying to write populist posts versus trying to write just for ourselves. But sometimes, the personal joy and sense of achievement that comes with just writing for ourselves can far outweigh the numbers. I am glad that you did this, you have every right to feel proud & accomplished! Besides, I can assure you that its great content 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I must say, while I didn’t comment, I thoroughly enjoyed the postings. SAO is a series that I haven’t yet watched or read, simply because I know I will comapre it to the .Hack franchise, and that is a battle that it would be difficult for SAO to win in my eyes. I’ll get around to it eventually of course, when I know i’ll give it a fair crack.
    The articles you posted though were wonderfully enlightening. I enjoyed how they were written, and the points that you chose to focus on, and so I read each one through more than once. For providing that entertainment, I thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh wow, thank you very much for following along! I’ve yet to visit the .Hack franchise but I plan to one day. I have a strong feeling it will be better than SAO, though. No offense to it, but SAO isn’t the sharpest pencil in the box. It places too much emphasis on an underdeveloped OP lead who frankly isn’t that interesting because of said lack. Where it’s lead falters, I believe it’s secondary (if I should call them that) characters pick up the slack; they are a much more involved batch of coincidentally all-female warriors.
      But I digress. I’m thrilled to hear from someone who has yet to watch the series, but had read my analysis. It was admittedly a bit drawn out, but I’m so happy to have enlightened you on the subject. I’m glad you enjoyed my writing, and I’m even more happy you joined me on this quest.
      For accompanying me, I thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Why thank you very much, Judge! I had a blast reading your comments along the way, and I’m glad we seem to have the same thoughts about the ever-abused Fairy Dance. Now my analysis is on the web – Forever for lost fairies to look back on, haha! Thanks for joining me on the quest.

      Liked by 1 person

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  5. I finally got around to reading everything. And I am inclined to say that was brilliant. Your part 4 reminds me of what I wrote about, except you did it first! Damn! I loved the analysis though. I feel the same about the ALfheim arc as you. There were things wrong with it, as you clearly pointed out, but every show has its problems and I didn’t think they were that big a deal. I genuinely enjoyed the entirety of the first season of SAO. The first part showing what was possible with the power of the NerveGear and the second part taking it one step further in attempting to control people and their emotions.

    In love, my friend. Keep up the good vibes!

    Liked by 1 person

    • . . . Helpful and useful. It’s so nice to see another viewer who wasn’t overly distraught with the second half. Yes, it had its faults, but it had a little more emotional depth if one took the time to dissect it. You make a good point about the NerveGear’s influence there–maybe someday I’ll have to write about the Aincrad arc.
      Thank you again for the long, healthy comment, and for revisiting an old post of mine–I love it when people read older content! Sorry I was so late to reply, but have a good one!!

      Liked by 1 person

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