The Mother’s Rosary (Rosario) side story arc encompasses the last few episodes of the series Sword Art Online II, and is the most touching bit from this franchise that I’ve seen thus far. Stick around ~
A popular figure by the name of Zekken, who wields the “11-hit Original Sword Skill” that is even faster than Kirito’s skills, challenges anyone in ALO to a fight. Asuna proves worthy of challenge and, after one hell of a match, is recruited by the “Absolute Sword” to fight alongside the “Sleeping Knights.” The guild is composed of terminally ill kids who wish to leave their mark in the world by defeating Aincrad’s newest floor boss themselves. Konno Yuuki, AKA Zekken, however refuses to tell Asuna anymore than that, as time is running out for our little purple knight. All the while, Asuna’s mom grows tired of her daughter wasting valuable time in a stupid video game.
I never truly appreciated Asuna like the majority of people do – even in Aincrad I thought she was a mediocre tsundere at best. Now, with the gorgeously smooth opening fight of Asuna VS Zekken, I have a growing appreciation. But wait, it gets better! She also endures a cold relationship with her mother, both sides knowing that she must eventually sacrifice her “childish” gaming in order to improve her grades and tests for the years of coming school work. Her mother forces adulthood unto Asuna that makes her more relatable and explains her actions more reasonably. Asuna’s struggle might not be a fresh concept, but witnessing the relatability of these real-life dilemmas, in one of my favorite anime nonetheless, forces me to reinterpret Sword Art Online‘s Asuna – and for the better.
While the rest of the supporting Sleeping Knight members are kinda pushed to the side, Konno Yuuki receives much development. Because it’s necessary for a full review, SPOILER ALERT: Konno severely suffers from acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS, which ultimately disables her from any physical activity. The AmuSphere and Medicuboid technology allow her to escape into the fantasy world, and the inevitable fate made out for her – death. We all see it coming, and when it does, let the waterworks begin:'(
I was so happy when I saw the recognition given to “the most powerful swordsman,” for once, a title not for Kirito. The inspiring amount of respect players of the Alfheim world gave her was incredible; truly, a legend died that day, not a little girl. Zekken will forever be missed, both online and in reality. “There are things you can only share with someone by fighting. For instance, how serious you are.” – Konno Yuuki
The amount of love and servitude that Asuna had given Konno was unbelievably generous. For her last few weeks, Asuna worked with Kirito and his mechatronics knowledge to bring Yuuki to school and her own house one last time, similar to his experiment with their digital daughter, Yui. I also have to mention the respect that Kirito had, backing down to support Asuna and her fight with the Sleeping Knights. What a gentle boy :3
And the opening – it’s the same great song with new visuals! It’s subtle but made all the difference. I’m loving the sharp violet resonance and pretty scenery of Alfheim 😀 The opening and these past two side stories have really changed my opinion of ALO altogether.
Although depressing, this last arc provides the much needed embellishment of Asuna’s character and introduced a small but very rememberable character. SAO impresses me the more I watch it, so I hope to see more wonderful content full of enchanting music, charming characters and high quality animation.
Sword Art Online II is tons of thrilling fun and concludes with a strong, heartwarming finish. I give this series a thumbs up and fully recommend it to fans of the first. If you haven’t seen either seasons, then you’re missing out! Well, at least for this season. Thanks so much for reading and until next time, this has been
– Takuto, your host