Leaving anticipation

An in-depth review into Netflix’s ‘Alice in Borderland’


Source: Netflix

What started as a normal day for Ryohei Arisu (Kento Yamazaki), turns into a nightmare when somehow he and the two friends he was running around Tokyo with end up in an alternate world. To survive, they must play and win games that can range from croquet to tag. These seem like innocent games at first, until death is granted to the losers.

Each game Arisu and his friends play is ranked by number and suit of card. The higher the number, the harder the game is to win. Each suit means a different type of challenge. 

A game with the club suit is a team game, a game with the diamond suit is a game of wits,  a game with the spades suit is a game of physical strength and a game with the heart suit is a game of sacrifice. Unlike the other games, the hearts games all operate differently. It’s hard to find a way to ensure everyone survives. 

Each game brings its own set of challenges, and each game won brings Arisu closer to finding out what this world is and how he can get out of it. 

Throughout both seasons of “Alice in Borderland,” a lot of emotions can be brought out of the viewers: rage, disgust, sadness, excitement and so many more. It’s a show that keeps the viewers on the edge of their seat wondering who will live, who will die, what happens next and when these horrid games will end. 

The viewers are also met with a wide range of different characters who not only help Arisu win these games, but help him get closer to the truth. 

About halfway through the first season, the viewers meet Niragi (Dori Sakurada), the main villain. Niragi enrages the audience from the very beginning. That rage for Niragi continues and deepens throughout the rest of the show with every little thing he does. Even though Niragi gets on the viewers’ nerves and is the main villain, Sakurada plays this role perfectly. Just like Nijirô Murakami, who plays Chishiya.

Viewers meet Chishiya during the second game of the show. He is a very witty and intelligent character who always thinks of the bigger picture first. He makes it a point to “work” with Arisu and is another person to help bring the fighter out of him. He is kind of like Usagi (Tao Tsuchiya) in this way.

Usagi is introduced in the same game as Chishiya and is the main love interest to Arisu. She helps get Arisu through the games and helps tremendously with his character development. She makes him more aware of the things going on around him, makes him learn to fight for his life and helps him find himself. 

However, the producers do overlook the love story between Arisu and Usagi by a mile. They shine a little light on it for a second and then they move on with the show like it didn’t even happen. It would be nice to see more of that relationship develop between the characters because it has more of an impact on the show than it appears at first glance. 

Overall, this show is really good at bringing out viewers’ emotions, and the producers know how to keep the viewers hooked. This show leaves its viewers anticipating a third season that has not yet been confirmed but is likely.