Like everyone else in the world, besides the liars who claim they never are, it has been a busy past 10 days. Although mine are selfish busy reasons beyond what needs to be done before I leave the US of A. One of them being totally obsessed with Sword Art Online.
Seriously, it is a problem.
The first 12 episodes of this anime are fucking amazing. Absolutely wonderful in so many senses. The manga, as many manga stories go, is a bit choppy and confusing to read at times. You get information at different times, and the pacing is odd. But the first 12 episodes are just… simply wonderful.
It could be because my brother and I were at one point in our early teens what type of weird ass awesome games we could come up with. And one of them was that when you bought the game, it was your one ticket until you died in game. Then, you’d have to fork out another $60 to start all over again.
Obviously, this would be for the hardcore gamers who felt the need to prove their abilities. Or, the incredibly stupid. Either way, we’d be making a pretty penny.
And I like to imagine that how SAO went down would be pretty similar to people’s experience in our game. Except, you know, without all the actual death. But you’ve got your trolls who would continually kill people for no reason, the ones who would help the others who come in to play, the guilds, parties, beaters… I never really got into .hack//SIGN, but as a gamer watching this anime? So enjoyable. No other explanations needed of anything because I already play so many RPGs/MMOs. Just added experience of “Now, THAT would be fucking awesome.”
I also don’t like guilds or being a part of a party too much, so Kirito and I were very much so on the same path. Particularly with the dual wielding. Fuck shields, man.
Those first 12 episodes are a blast to binge watch. Fantastic on the psychology of being in a death game, of not really knowing the people who are beside you, how one can grow within a span of two years, and particularly the acceptance of possibly being stuck forever–and almost being okay with that. Also, it’s gorgeous and has some killer fighting scenes. I want to go to there.
But then that gods damn it all 13th episode and beyond come in. Along with the rest of that manga I didn’t finish and went back to check out and realized there are so many different adaptations/re-writes that I don’t even care anymore.
None of them exist. Because the rest of the series becomes a Princess trope (I don’t even want to begin about my Asuna feels), boobs (we got through so many episodes with only one reference–and now boobs be everywhere, along with incessant rape threats), how Kirito is a man all the ladies want (he’s awesome, but opposite genders can just be friends, FYI), and the charm of what made those first 12 episodes so magical is left to pieces. Which means they officially don’t exist for me. Just like there isn’t a movie based off of Avatar: The Last Airbender.
I just want to remember Asuna like this:
And mostly this:
Because everything else after that just took those wonderful lessons and ideas, placed them in a box, and said, “Remember those things that we typically see everywhere else in the anime/manga culture? Let’s do that instead!”
Why people love when a female just sits in a cage to wait and not struggle is beyond me. And cousin love — it was worse than when DiC decided that Michiru and Haruka weren’t lovers, but cousins because America apparently wouldn’t be able to handle lesbianism. Ugh, just awkward.
But that first half of the anime was filled with laughter and tears for me. I enjoyed it immensely.
I suppose my life has also consisted of watching this and then bitching about it while attempting to do other things. I grouted the tile in my brother’s bathroom to help out with the house. It was fun with an ankle that hates doing what it is supposed to do, and a knee that likes to remind me that it has a very large bruise/scrape that is trying heal. I finished the SAO series between bouts of washing the tile clean.
Can we all just agree that grouting is infuriatingly time consuming? I can see why people pay others to take care of it. Because I will never do it again. (I’m lying. It’s cheaper for me to do it, and I’m a frugal dick, yo.)
I also had some minor panics on how to get everything ready to go in a month. Everything can work out okay as needed on paper, but the rest of my shit isn’t fun to get into gear. I really do have a lot of books, and storage bins are what I like to call Ridiculous Expensive. And I want to place limits on the amount of luggage I take over.
Some days, I wish I’d have concentrated on becoming a Buddhist so I wouldn’t care about material objects so much. But I have a handmade wooden jewelry box my aunt used before she passed away and a wonderful mirror shelf someone made by combining an old table and church mirror with hooks on the side. Also, my stuffed Appa and the Makar pillow my father made me.
SO MANY FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS.
I’m trying to think of this as a future present to myself. Every time I decide to pack something away, I think about my reaction when I open it up again. Will I care when I open up the tub and see it again after who knows how long I am gone? Will I want this object back in my life?
Predicting my future self is difficult. Although I have the sneaking suspicion that I have not actually grown at all since the age of five, I know that I have changed in many ways. And I also know that different cultures have different priorities.
For instance, internet is not New Zealand’s shtick — you pay per the amount you use. And neither is talking on the phone — it’s all about texting. This means a laptop instead of my desktop makes sense. And that, while I want to get a tricked out laptop that will handle my MMO needs, perhaps not a wise decision if I’ll end up not being able to play anyway.
I think it is just my honest hope that I will still somehow be the same enough person to enjoy what I love right now. Because giving up what I love now is difficult. But every step is worth getting back to where I fell in love with another country in the first place.