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Sword Art Online II Episode 9 Review: Hunting Death Gun

A fairly action packed episode of Sword Art Online II this week, but then it ends with the most agonizing of cliff hangers you could possibly imagine. We learn the fate of Pale Rider. Kirito’s friends see Death Gun and realize that they have met him before, and Kirito and Sinon team up to take out Death Gun.

The episode kicks off with showing everyone in Asuna and Kirito’s home in ALO. As they watch the Bullet of Bullets and complain about the lack of screen time for Kirito, they see Death Gun. Among the group, only Klein and Asuna have had dealings with Laughing Coffin and that look of shock and concern was delivered really well in this episode. Like Kirito, the two of them are also facing ghosts from the past. Asuna logs out to talk to Kirito’s employer and get more information, and I wonder if she will somehow become a part of the events that are transpiring.

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Death Gun not only has an intimidating presence, but his skills make him a truly formidable opponent for any who cross his path. It’s bad enough that he has a completely silent sniper rifle, but now he can apparently dodge shots from a sniper rifle as well. Unfortunately Kirito and Sinon could not stop him, and Death Gun used his pistol on Pale Rider. Apparently the gun doesn’t do much damage to the player, yet somehow they are disconnected and die a few seconds later.

After witnessing the murder, Kirito and Sinon did something I didn’t quite expect to see happen anytime soon. They actually team up and work together to bring down Death Gun. My guess is that Sinon believed Kirito’s story about Death Gun after seeing it with her own eyes. Now it is only natural that they decide to take out the biggest threat in the game, and someone who can actually kill a player certain qualifies.

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One of the big highlights of this episode for me was probably the big impossible thing that Kirito does. He detects a player nearby with an automatic rifle, and then blocks every single bullet that’s fired. Sinon then picks him off with a gut shot, which results in one of the most gruesome deaths in the series so far. The special effects and imagery used in this scene was spectacular, and the new mix of the theme song for the original SAO was a really nice touch as well for people who had watched the first season.

Naturally, in order to take out someone like Death Gun, Kirito and Sinon decide to come up with a plan for where they can find and kill Death Gun. There are two players who might be Death Gun. The first one is Gunner X, while the other one is called Sterben. When they arrive at a ruined city and see that Gunner X is the only player in the area, they decide that Death Gun must be Gunner X. They come up with a plan for dealing with him, but you know what they say about the best laid plans.

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Death Gun manages to paralyze Sinon and moves in for the kill. He apparently has some sort of active camo cloak that allows him to appear and disappear like a ghost, which is a pretty handy thing to have I imagine. Death Gun plans to kill Sinon in order to draw out Kirito, but the question is will this work? Sinon’s day gets worse when she discovers that the gun that Death Gun uses to kill people is none other than the same model of the gun she used to kill that guy when she was little. The episode then ends with a bang, literally. Is Sinon dead? Did Kirito make it in time to stop Death Gun?

Those answers won’t be revealed until later this week, on Saturday to be specific. This has got to be the worst cliff hanger in the entire series so far, and it is unfortunate having to wait and see what happens. They certainly do know how to make the audience come back week after week.



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