Sword Art Online, Episode 7 Rant

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We open Episode 7 on June 24, 2024 on Floor 48. It’s been nearly two months since the last episode, and we are introduced to Lisbeth, the last of the “viable” harem that Kirito gets while in Aincrad. No, by the end of the arc Kirito doesn’t actually end up with multiple ladies at his side (thank the stars), but Lisbeth, along with Silica, Asuna and the long-since-dead Sachi do make up a quartet of potential wives for this supposed harem. I wonder if at some point this wasn’t actually considered? Lisbeth is a blacksmith, the only character we’ve seen so far with a penchant for the non-combat skills (we’ll be ignoring Asuna’s cooking proficiency), and she’s working on a sword for Asuna.

Lisbeth asks if Asuna isn’t hunting with the guild, to which Asuna replies she’s taking the day off. Kirito’s asshole ways are clearly rubbing off on her. But I won’t harp on the issue, as I am lenient on this particular matter. Long as no one mentions a dungeon crawl it’s cool to take a day now and then.

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Of course, Lisbeth isn’t entirely stupid, and realizes that Asuna is actually taking the day to meet with a guy (as indicated by her earrings). I won’t hold a suspense over who it is, since clearly it’s Kirito because as far as we’ve seen Asuna doesn’t know or speak to any other male character in this series. Never mind that she probably interacts and talks with dozens of other people (all male most likely) as second in command of a large guild. The fact that she continually remembers Kirito even exists is testament to the author’s firm hard-on to get these two together. Asuna and Kirito being familiar makes more sense in the Progressive reboot series, as the two spend much more time together exploring the lower levels of Aincrad not long after the start of the series. But I digress.

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We get a brief view of a picture (didn’t know they could print these in the game?) with a younger Lisbeth and a few “friends”. This would probably be a good chance to give her a bit of background but instead we cut straight to the opening credits. Is it because they’re all ugly or old that she didn’t shack up with any of them? Or did they all die? These are entirely valid questions we will never get answers to. In all honesty Lisbeth is probably the least offensive and overall best written character of the series. While she lasts; which isn’t long, and it’s a shame she drops out by the end of the first story arc.

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A customer walks into Lisbeth’s shop, and who should it be but fucking Kirito. Of course, right? I would raise questions over how he came to find her place way down on Floor 48 but it’s entirely possible he heard about it from Asuna, whom we know he socializes with. Asuna had also mentioned Lisbeth briefly back in Episode 5. I’d like to point out Lisbeth’s question is also fair, as Kirito is still sporting his crappy black cloak from Floor 1. Sadly, we all know Kirito is usually rolling in cash for being a loot hog and probably having stolen all the money from the Moonlit Black Cats guild after the rest of them died. They did own a guild house worth 200,000 col, remember? No doubt ownership passed to Kirito after the leader committed suicide.

Kirito is in the market for a new sword (duh) and asks Lisbeth for her best work. We see for the first time the name of Kirito’s black sword, which he’s had for some time now and according to Lisbeth is “one of the best magic swords you can get from a monster drop”. We don’t have any idea what floor is the latest, but last it was mentioned was hovering around the late 50s. This means Kirito has been using this sword for a long time, making me question just how powerful (or not) it really is. Makes me question how good Lisbeth is at her job as well. But I’m nitpicking at this point.

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To test Lisbeth’s sword, he tried to cut into his own, breaking the weapon and causing it to disappear. This scene raises a number of questions.

First, was this necessary? From an anime perspective, yes. If we just took Kirito’s word for it, how would we truly know Lisbeth’s sword wasn’t durable? Never mind there’s another way to test durability and that’s to scan the weapon.

I’m fucking serious; all a person has to do is tap the sword to see its attributes. It’s a video game, remember? Everything in this world is quantifiable and easily checked. There was no need for Kirito to pull a stunt like this. Not only did he break a sword (and therefore has to pay for it), he’s practically spitting in Lisbeth’s face by showing her that her supposed “best work” is utter shit. This could be pointed out in a more tactful way, is all I’m saying. This whole scene was for show and Kirito’s “meh” nature to having to pay for a broken sword only shows how much he doesn’t care about being conservative with his money. Anyone can be when they have a guild’s resources in their pocket after slaughtering them all.

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Lisbeth’s reaction to the broken sword is understandable.

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Lisbeth’s anger is also justified. Like I said a moment ago, Kirito could have simply CHECKED THE WEAPON STATS.

To save face (why I don’t know), Lisbeth tells Kirito that with the right materials she could make a better weapon. To which Kirito agrees, and even to her condition that he help her acquire the materials in order to achieve this task. Kirito tries to keep Lisbeth out of the party for this part, but naturally we have a contrivance to keep them together for the duration of the episode:

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There’s a dragon on Floor 55 that can drop a rare material, but only if a master smith is in the party (as Lisbeth points out). How fucking convenient. Not to mention a blatant fucking lie. Trust me, I’ll get back to that one.

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I swear sometimes even Kirito looks like he doesn’t want to deal with the bullshit of this anime.

We cut to Floor 55, a snowy mountain and Kirito and Lisbeth climbing to reach the summit. Lisbeth is understandably cold, since her outfit consists of a thin dress. If only to shut her up, Kirito lets her have his coat.

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Lisbeth points out that it’s warm, which I’m pretty sure they meant to say she’s feeling Kirito’s residual body heat from when he was wearing it. No, they didn’t specify this exactly, but it’s obvious that’s what they were going for. You mean to tell me residual heat is a thing that can actually be experienced in this virtual reality? Boy those developers sure did know how to program the darndest things.

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Hate to break it to you Lisbeth, but you probably shouldn’t be. Not for reasons of modesty, but because Kirito is likely to have you killed if you so much as upset him. The Moonlit Black Cats aren’t around anymore, just saying. Also, take note of the fact Kirito’s name and HP bar doesn’t show under Lisbeth’s, despite the two being in a party. Inconsistency!

Upon reaching the summit, Kirito barks orders for Lisbeth to hide during the fight with the dragon, have her teleport crystal handy and to shut the fuck up the entire time. I guess it’s fair to say he’s learned his lesson from when Sachi was killed on his account, huh? Of course given his sociopathic tendencies I wonder what compels him to try and protect his party members.

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The dragon in question shows up and Kirito takes him on solo. He effortlessly beats on the dragon, all the while Lisbeth watches in shock. One could almost say Kirito is somehow CHEATING? Nah, I’m pushing it. Lisbeth disobeys Kirito’s orders (like a dumb bitch) and steps out of cover just before Kirito finishes the monster off. This of course causes the dragon to target her, instead. Now, let me just point something out here:

This is a video game. I know I have to keep saying this because at times the anime itself forgets this is a video game. The laws of the video game are in effect here, including that of aggro. For the uninitiated, aggro refers to the idea that a monster will target whoever is causing the most trouble in the battle. This can relate to which player is dealing the most damage or generating “hate” through supportive actions. In this example, it’s obvious Kirito is the only target for the AI-controlled dragon because it’s been a one-on-one fight all this time. Even assuming the dragon could target other players based on sight alone, Kirito has too much aggro and hate accrued from the fight for the dragon to simply abandon him for Lisbeth when all she did was step into his line of sight. It just doesn’t work that way.

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Still, the dragon shifts targets and blows Lisbeth away and into a seemingly endless pit. Kirito in a shocking display of selflessness jumps in after her, taking her in his arms and using his own body to absorb the impact of the fall. Fall damage itself hasn’t been showcased in the anime thus far, with the only real penalty being death for the suicide jumps off the edge of the game world. Assuming fall damage is a thing in this game (it is) it’s unlikely Kirito or even Lisbeth will survive such a drop. Guess that’s the end of this adventure, huh?

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And yet somehow they both survive. Of fucking course. Normally I’d be on Lisbeth’s side but honestly this whole mess was her fault to begin with.

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As the two lick their wounds, Kirito asks this obnoxious question. Of course, Lisbeth’s response is to just teleport out of there, which immediately fails. Almost as if Kirito knew ahead of time! Gee, I wonder how? Not to mention if he did, why the hell he didn’t just say so in the first place! Anyway, Kirito’s plan to escape this supposedly inescapable pit is to “run up the walls”.

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“Are you stupid?”

Seriously, are you fucking stupid? That reply is shonen anime level shit. This might be a video game but it’s a video game with RULES. Is wall running possible in the game? Has it ever been done? Clearly not, since Lisbeth herself can’t imagine such a feat being possible. And I don’t fucking blame her. But all the same Kirito tries, manages to climb up a few dozen feet somehow before the game forces his idiot ass back to the ground. Yet somehow he isn’t fazed, and claims it could work if he had more of a running start.

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What she said.

With no other option, the two are forced to camp out at the bottom of the pit. They don’t even know if there is a way out, and they’re just going to wait until morning? How about calling for help? Asuna maybe? Anyone else they know? Surely someone can find them a way out of there, right? NOPE they just decide to try again in the morning. It’s a good thing they pack sleeping bags at all times, right?

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Honey, don’t ask that question. The writer’s hand is all over that awful decision. Or maybe he just really needed her alive to have that sword made? Probably that.

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“I’d rather die with someone than let them die alone.”

Excuse me.

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YOU FUCKING LIAR. Tell that to Sachi and the rest of her guild whom you LET DIE out of selfishness! What gets me about this whole attempt at having Kirito do “right” in penance for his crimes is that he hasn’t learned his lesson! Kirito is still a solo player, he still values himself and his secrets more than anything else. This whole attempt at character growth would make more sense if the minute Sachi died (or at the latest, after hearing her message last Christmas) he turned over a new leaf and joined a guild. Hang with the few people he knows, work closely with the frontrunners. No. Instead he just keeps on trucking it alone. This isn’t someone looking for forgiveness for his errors in life. This is someone PLAYING at seeking forgiveness to ease his twisted conscience. If he even has one.

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And to boot he insults Lisbeth right to her face. She’s likely as old as or even older than you, asshole.

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AND SHE BELIEVES HIM. But I really shouldn’t be surprised, because if you recall…

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SACHI BELIEVED HIM TOO. AND LOOK WHAT THAT GOT HER.

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In either case, the night passes and Lisbeth wakes up to Kirito shoveling around in the snow. If this were a real setting, I’d make the joke that he was covering up an early morning shit but this is a game so why Kirito is doing this is anyone’s guess. Lisbeth recalls holding Kirito’s hand as she fell asleep the previous night, which was weird but somehow we had to get her to fall in love with him in the span of a single night, right?

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Kirito finishes digging, and produces a piece of material that JUST SO HAPPENS to be what they came looking for. What fucking luck, right? WRONG.

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It’s like a sick joke. And not the kind that’s meant to be funny. Or actually, it’s meant to be funny but in reality it isn’t. Let’s break this down:

According to Kirito, the material in question can only be obtained at the bottom of this pit because it’s dragon shit. Literally. This means no one else in the game so far has been able to acquire this drop because it’s an unconventional one. Assuming this is true, how do you explain WHY everyone seemed to know about this drop? Or hell, let’s assume only Lisbeth had heard about it. That it trended her circles. Remember?

There’s a dragon on Floor 55 that can drop a rare material, but only if a master smith is in the party.

Who told her this information? It was a fucking lie. We have to assume it came from the mouth of some jerkass because even Kirito didn’t know about it. Meaning Argo the Rat doesn’t know about it. So NO ONE DOES. Lisbeth’s inclusion in this whole endeavor was pointless and just an excuse to have Kirito play with another girl who will undoubtedly develop affections for him. It’s disgusting.

And to top it off, what possessed Kirito to go digging through the snow to find this? What possible reason or line of thinking would have him do such a task to uncover this rare material? This anime has more plot holes in it than a slice of swiss cheese.

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To add yet another plot hole, they come to the conclusion that the pit is the dragon’s nest. Once the beast descends into it to sleep, Kirito and Lisbeth hitch a ride on its back to escape. So you mean to tell me this is a scripted event? What if others players had failed to ride the dragon out of the hole? I can only imagine this part was designed for SAO before it turned into the “game of death” it is. But I’m tired of harping on this one thing so I’ll just leave it at Kirito and Lisbeth riding the dragon out of a pit designed to prevent escape. Because reasons.

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And why not? Let’s have a moment of wonder during a freefall that could just as easily kill them as their previous dive into a bottomless pit.

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Also this happens. One night with Kirito the prick and she’s confessing feelings? I’ll give her some credit, at least she doesn’t hold it in for years like most anime protagonists.

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We cut back to Lisbeth’s shop, where she forges a new sword that (as the image shows) isn’t even listed in the game directory. This doesn’t mean she created a wholly new sword, just that she’s the first to make a sword that hadn’t been catalogued by the other players yet. Good for her. Guess that’s what happens when you use material no one else has. And OF COURSE this one of a kind sword now belongs to Kirito. Asshole gets all the nicest things.

Satisfied with the result, Kirito offers to pay for the sword, and Lisbeth should charge him every single penny he has for it. But for some reason the girl doesn’t charge him a single col! She instead asks for exclusivity, demanding Kirito go to her for all his weapon needs. This is a ridiculous notion but makes sense when you factor in that Lisbeth is a single sentence away from marrying Kirito. The only thing stopping her from doing this?

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Asuna showed up at just the right moment to fuck over Lisbeth’s plans. Because we can’t have anyone else shacking up with Kirito, can we? The better question is why would anyone do this? Makes me wonder if Kirito will actually spill the beans on what he did to the Moonlit Black Cats at some point…

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The look on Lisbeth’s face is quite something. She’s only known the dude for less than a day! Cheer the fuck up, why don’t you? And even if Lisbeth realized Asuna and Kirito MIGHT be a thing, why not simply throw it out there? But I suppose that would be a dick move, and Lisbeth actually has a good heart and wouldn’t interject herself between a friend and some guy. Maybe shrugging Kirito off this way was the smartest decision ever? Like if the character herself had a will of her own to reject the shitty writing.

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All the same, we get a brief scene of Lisbeth curled up somewhere as she processes these feelings. And who should show up to fuck over this moment of silent introspection than Kirito? Lisbeth tries to get Kirito to fuck off, so she could have her moment alone but the idiot doesn’t get a hint and starts spouting nonsense he himself doesn’t believe. You know, attempts at making Kirito seem like the decent human being he clearly isn’t.

Lisbeth all but confesses how she felt, but the dense asshat doesn’t realize this. The episode ends rather abruptly, showing just how awful Kirito’s inclusion in this final scene was.

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Sword Art Online, Episode 7 Rant

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