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Old 2012-08-19, 09:24   Link #132
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Location: Newfoundland, Canada
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Originally Posted by Clarste View Post
Spoiler for Comparison to the novel for this episode:
Spoiler for reply to novel comparison:

I really liked this episode, but a large part of that was getting to see some actual action scenes for a change. While I respect how Iron Maw found it to be a bit lackluster, I myself found the whole fight with the dragon pretty exciting and compelling (granted, though, that a lot of that was due to the breathtaking "sky of sunlight" scene they had while Kirito and Liz were in mid-air together).

And Liz was a nice character. She struck me as being cute like Silica, but having a bit more edge and spunk to her. I have to admit that if I was Kirito I'd be very tempted to pick Liz over Asuna as great as Asuna is.

As for Kirito being a Marty Stu... Yes, in a way, he is. But I think that's the whole point with his character. I think he's designed to be the very exemplar of what the modern otaku wants to be (incidentally, I'm now starting to get a clearer idea of why SAO is as popular as it is).

He's a loner that tightly guards his independence, but he has admirable (and at times amazing) empathy for others.

He's caring, but he says more with his actions than with his words. His words are chosen carefully, and hence they usually have some weight to them.

He doesn't lose sight of "the mission" (i.e. clear the game), but he also takes time to appreciate the finer things in life (in SAO).

He's strong, swift, and effective, but he's not a showboat. He's confident, but not cocky.

He attracts the ladies and legitimately wins them over due to his positive personality traits, but he's not afraid or too shy to clearly and fairly speak his mind to them (this particular trait of Kirito's I think is honestly under-appreciated).

He has just the right amount of angst. Not so little that he lacks character or seems impossible to accept in a setting like this, but not so much that he makes you think of guys like Guilty Crown's Shu or Mirai Nikki's Yuki.

And yes, he's very good at what he does and he has plenty of talent and skill.

In short, he's Chuck Norris. Or Optimus Prime. Or Superman. Or Batman. He's that sort of character, and that's the whole idea with him I think. He's meant to be awesome and cool and the ultimate "good guy".

I honestly kind of like it - Instead of being another pure stand-in character for otakus (we see these all the time in harem shows), he's rather the person that the otaku would want to be.

Is he a wish-fulfillment character? Sure, totally. Just like Chuck Norris, Optimus Prime, Superman, and Batman are. Those sorts of characters can say a lot about a culture or a subculture, and that's much of what's interesting about them. These sorts of characters tend to represent the very best/most desirable in what we see in ourselves, and so they can speak to our hopes and dreams and imaginations in ways that most other characters can't.

That being said, to make Kirito work, Asuna is going to need to be very strong. The danger with a character like Kirito is that they can make other characters seem useless by comparison, and I'll admit that there's a slight touch of that in these "Girls of the week" episodes. I'm hoping that the episode will come where Kirito truly needs Asuna to bail him out, where "The Big Damn Hero" needs to be saved himself for a change. You need that at least once or twice to humanize "The Big Damn Hero", imo.

Last edited by relentlessflame; 2012-08-19 at 13:11.
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