Alice in Borderland – A deeply psychological death game

Hey guys what is up welcome back to my blog I’m so thankful that you guys took the time out of your day to read my blog post. Hope you all are safe and healthy. I thought about watching the Netflix show for this one but then I just settled for the manga and it is a wild ride. MILD SPOILERS AHEAD.

The story starts off with Arisu, student who is dissatisfied with his life and spends his time with his only two friends, Chouta and Karube. One day the trio suddenly see fireworks in the sky and suddenly wake up in a seemingly post apocalyptic world. The trio explore the world and soon participate in a ‘game’ with a woman they meet which are represented in type and difficulty by playing cards. Understanding they they are in a place known as the Borderlands where they need to participate in the games to survive which if they fail means death, Arisu and his friends clear a game and get what is known as a ‘visa’ which allows them to stay in the Borderlands for a few days. If this visa expires, the player will be shot by a laser beam from the sky. Wondering about the many mysteries of the world of Borderlands and seeking an answer for what happened to them, Arisu decides to survive in this world to uncover the many many mysteries of this world.

The manga has some good character development. We see Arisu who is our main protagonist and constantly changes or evolves his goals throughout the duration of the manga as he experiences new things in the Borderlands. His character as a whole is very interesting to me because of how scared he acts just like a normal person would in that scenario and yet also manages to calm himself down and clear the games. Showing his psychology of him always chasing after a goal and then being shattered when it’s not what he thinks it is is really interesting to me. This constant destruction snd rebuilding is what causes true growth in him. There are other amazing characters as well such as Usagi, a mountain climber who becomes Arisu’s primary love interest. There are more supporting characters too but telling too much is a spoiler and you know I don’t like spoilers.

I like the games that are setup in the manga which are both variations of simple things such as Blackjack and completely new games and concepts which will make you stop and process the rules. The strategic moves and mind games are the best thing about the manga which really makes me think that this story should be seinen rather than shounen but that’s just my personal opinion. The manga manages to draw you in from the very start and keeps that interest throughout the story even when it deviates into side stories which focuses on other characters. The manga doesn’t forget these characters and develops all of them with their oen unique backstory.

The manga goes deeply psychological with one question and that is ‘Why do you live ?’ and without providing an answer for it, the manga teaches a lot of things. The manga shows that everyone has different thigs that they hold dear and different things that makes them want to live and this very theme is central to the last game of the manga and I think is something that people can reflect on and truly try to understand what their purpose is in life. The manga also dives into survivor’s guilt and a good look at that allows people to understand trauma victims just a little bit better.

The manga is finished at 93 chapters if I remember correctly with all the side stories and lots of chapters being divided into 2 parts. There is also a short sequel called Alice in Borderland Retry which is of 13 chapters and can be read if you want to see how Arisu ends up later on in life. With it’s interesting plot, many mysteries, great strategic mind games and even good action combined with it’s psychological themes, Alice in Borderland is one manga that will immediately go into your top 10.

So that is it for this post guys hope you got some value from this.  Thank you guys for reading to the end hit me up on Instagram and Twitter with your thoughts and if you have any ideas on what I should write about. Stay safe from the COVID-19. Thank you again and I’ll see you all next week.

Published by Harshit Sagar

I am a 18 year old teen who has a passion for writing and loves anime.

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