If you have a thing for life-and-death games, terrifying dystopian worlds, and badass characters, then Alice in Borderland will give you one hell of a good time. It currently holds the record for the most hours viewed in a week for a Japanese series.
Season 1 aired in 2020, but its popularity skyrocketed around the time of the release of Season 2 in December 2022.
Without giving away too many spoilers, we’ve rounded up several reasons to help you decide whether you should join the hype.
Alice in Borderland plot and cast
Alice in Borderland is based on the popular sci-fi-thriller manga of the same name by Haro Aso. A gamer named Arisu (played by Kento Yamazaki) and his two friends Chota (played by Yuki Morinaga) and Karube (played by Keita Machida) take a quick trip to a public restroom in Tokyo after trying to steer away from having trouble with the cops. When they emerge, the city is a ghost town, and they must play games to survive. Arisu meets Usagi (Tao Tsuchiya) who joins him on his mission to find the truth about Borderland.
Once you’ve entered a game in Borderland, a laser barrier goes up, and you can no longer escape until you’ve cleared the game.
4 reasons to watch Alice in Borderland
1. The games
The show’s survival-of-the-fittest games are mind-blowing (sometimes literally) and will make you wonder what you would do if you were in the players’ shoes. Similar to how players in the Korean hit Squid Game had to survive in deadly children’s games, the players of Alice in Borderland had to join in a variety of brutal games to gain a suit of cards.
The games are categorised into hearts, spades, clubs, and diamonds. They range from physical ones that require strength or endurance to ones that are more cerebral and require logic or rationality. The level of difficulty is based on the number that appears on the card shown at the beginning of each game. Once you reach Season 2, the stakes are higher as the players have to go head-to-head with the ones on top of the games.
2. The plot’s heart-racing twists and turns
Alice in Borderland is filled with surprises that will keep you on the edge of your seat. If you’ve successfully avoided any spoilers till now, then you’ll enjoy unravelling the show’s mysteries and wonder if the characters would ever return to the real or original world.
3. The captivating characters
The characters in the show will draw you in as they are labelled as outcasts in the original world. Each of the characters has flaws, weaknesses, and a story to tell, and you’ll get to see more of their backgrounds as the second season unfolds. Aside from the main characters, other characters you’ll definitely root for are Chishiya (played by Nijirô Murakami), Kuina (played by Aya Asahina), and Ann (played by Ayaka Miyoshi).
The friendships among the characters are ones that have been forged in fire. Most do everything to save their own skins in the horrific world, but some characters decide to do what they can to save others and truly shine in the show.
4. The visual effects
Turning the once-bustling city of Shibuya into an abandoned and brutal world with highly advanced gaming arenas and annihilation systems was a feat that Alice in Borderland achieved. Netflix reported that the visual effects involved teams from Japan, Singapore, the USA (Los Angeles), and India.
Will there be a Season 3?
While Netflix hasn’t announced the show being renewed for a third season, the ending of Season 2 will make you wonder if not everything is what it seems and if the show has really wrapped up. It’s an intriguing ending that involves a character that was in the original manga series but has not appeared in the Netflix adaptation.
So if you haven’t, start streaming Alice in Borderland Seasons 1 and 2 here.
(Cover photo from: Netflix)
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