Alice in Borderland is a sci-fi, action-adventure-thriller series created by Yoshiki Watabe and Yasuko Kuramitsu, and is based on the manga by the same name by Haro Aso. The series stars Kento Yamazaki, Tao Tsuchiya, Yuki Morinaga, Keita Machida, Aya Asahina and others.
Alice in Borderland is one of those perfectly binge-worthy shows that just comes out of nowhere and leaves you wanting more. It’s a sick little Saw movie meshed together with high emotions that sometimes make you cry. I love shows like these that point a finger at everything and everyone. This show is just that – it’s high on energy and is extremely fun to binge, with a little dose of sick and twisted games.
Or a lot of it, actually.
Alice is Borderland follows three friends, Arisu, Karube and Chota, who find one day that everyone around them has disappeared. To make matters more complicated, they now have to take part in dangerous games in order to extend their lives, or risk getting killed.
This show is such a fun ride. There’s not a moment of boredom here, rather, you’d be pressing the “Next Episode” button the moment an episode ends. Let’s first focus on the games: the games are chosen at random and are given according to a particular card. These games cannot be just crossed on dumb, blind luck. There’s a lot of logic behind it and the players are expected to fully understand it in order for all of them to come out alive.
These games are extremely fun to watch and are the best part of Alice in Borderland. The thought that has gone behind creating these is absolutely fantastic, and they are not just gory and disgusting (because they mostly are), but are extremely smart and have thought and logic behind them. You always have a choice to figure out how to beat it if you think carefully. I relish shows that focus on such things. It’s an absolute treat to unravel the game or to watch our characters solve these intricate puzzles.
Next, the characters. It’s a mixture of happiness and emotion to watch these extremely fleshed-out, relatable and deeply flawed but good characters try to win these dangerous games. From the first episode itself, Alice in Borderland feels deeply personal. Somehow, these no-good kids become very much our own, and we get moments of character buildup for all the characters we see on-screen, regardless of how little we get to see them. Not one character exists without a purpose or background. No one is a manic killer (ok, maybe Niragi) and their backgrounds give them a very human feel.
Alice in Borderland is probably one of the best releases in the sci-fi genre on Netflix this year. With great mind games and characters and very fast and energetic pacing, this series is easily a must-watch if you’re into the genre. There’s a lot to unpack, and with a chance for another season over the horizon, it remains to be seen how far Arisu, Usagi, Chishiya and Kuina have to go in order to go back to their own world.
Alice in Borderland Ending Explanation
Okay, although the last episode did not definitively tell us who is controlling the games or what its end goal is, or even if it’s happening in the same universe as the group’s original world or not, we do see what the Beach game is all about.
It isn’t Aguni or anyone from the military who fiddled with the power of the Beach. It was Momoka and Asahi who fiddled with the thing because they are with the “organisers” or are dealers. They have done this before, and just like Arisu and gang, they are also getting visa extensions by playing this game.
No, Chishiya, although in it for the long game, did not probably know about Momoka and Asahi. He figured out that something deeper was at play because he’s one smart guy, but he did not know about the two girls until it was too late.
Mira was the girl who was an Executive Board member at the Beach. She is also a part of the Game Master’s team and helped create this whole thing. She also probably has come up with some of the games in this mess.
Yes, there probably is going to be another season, because the four don’t really have a choice other than to play for the remaining face cards to complete the deck.
However, will collecting all of the cards take them back? Is that even possible? But the main question here probably is that – is there a “back” to go back to?
Alice in Borderland is streaming on Netflix.
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