Yumi HaraKaori NazukaEmiri KatoJouji Nakata
Log Horizon: Destruction of the Round Table
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2021: L
Also known as: Log Horizon: Entaku Houkai
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2021
Director: Shinji Ishihira
Writer: Toshizo Nemoto
Original creator: Mamare Touno
Actor: Ayahi Takagaki, Chiwa Saito, Cho, Daiki Yamashita, Emiri Kato, Eriko Matsui, Hiro Shimono, Hiroki Goto, Hiroshi Shirokuma, Ikumi Hayama, Jouji Nakata, Kaori Nazuka, Manaka Iwami, Marina Inoue, Mariya Ise, Masakazu Nishida, Masaki Terasoma, Misaki Kuno, Nanami Yamashita, Nao Tamura, Nobuhiko Okamoto, Rie Murakawa, Satoshi Hino, Sayaka Ohara, Shinichiro Miki, Takahiro Sakurai, Takuma Terashima, Tetsuya Kakihara, Tomoaki Maeno, Yuichi Nakamura, Yukiyo Fujii, Yumi Hara, Yutaka Aoyama
Keywords: Log Horizon, anime, MMORPG
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: Season 3, episodes 51-62
Url: https://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=22993
Website category: Anime 2021
Review date: 31 October 2022
I like this anime. Or, to be more precise, I liked it in 2013-14, when it came out. It's from the creator of Maoyu and has similar preoccupations, being interested in economics, governance, politics and other such things you wouldn't get from Sword Art Online. (The two shows have a similar premise, being about people who got stuck in a fantasy game world, but Log Horizon is more relaxed. It portrays death as a temporary inconvenience, for instance. It's a game world. Just cast a resurrection spell.)
Now, to my surprise, a third season has appeared. It's okay. I didn't mind it... which, looking back, is a step down from my reaction to Seasons 1-2. I'm sure I'd have enjoyed this season more if I did a big marathon of everything from the beginning, but most viewers won't do that. It does indeed have some good episodes and it's a likeable, good-natured show, but it tends to lack urgency.
I think the season's problem is that it lacks baddies. It has opponents, but not villains. There's an election halfway through, but the other side are perfectly decent people with their own points of view. Similarly, the big raid battle towards the end provides a lot of the excitement that had been missing from earlier episodes, but that doesn't really have a villain either. It has a big dumb-ish monster with no personality. That's not the same thing.
A rough outline of this season might go as follows...
(a) people talk for a while about government stuff. A princess says her marriage has been decided and she doesn't know how long she'll be able to stay in Akiba.
(b) Shiroe suggests settling differences with an election, which is cool and leads to one of the season's two highlights. Ep.4 (where all this gets going) is the season's first good episode. Interestingly, Shiroe's electoral rules are more liberal than modern Japan's, although that's partly a consequence of living in a pseudo-medieval world without significant bureaucracy. Anyone who turns up on ballot day will get a vote. Tourists? Immigrants? Doesn't matter.
(c) the show settles back into its earlier, unhurried rhythm. The Useless Sisters show up and eat lots of food. One of the girls in the cast likes Shiroe and tries to go on a date with him.
(d) the show's scriptwriter goes "whoops, we need some fights". An unknown enemy attacks Akiba and it's up to the youngsters to save the day. This is reasonably good and exciting, but to be honest I was more interested in the resolution of the "whatshername is in love with Shiroe" B-plot. (The show doesn't try to harem itself up, but instead gives straight, sincere answers.)
The season's fine. It can get a bit dull, but it has good bits too and I might well do a big rewatch at some point. The ending teases a possible Season 4, which would probably prod me into doing so.