Review: Alice in Borderland – Season 1

I’ve never really been a fan of manga or anime, so naturally, I’d never heard of Alice in Borderland. The pandemic introduced me to the infamous Squid Game. After watching the entire season obsessively, I started checking comments of fellow Squid Game fans, and found a comment that mentioned Alice in Borderland. I added it to my watchlist, but didn’t watch it up until last month. But boy, was this a crazy ride!

I can talk about this series all day long. Everything starting from the storyline to the amazing cast mesmerized me. But since people might not have the time to hear me ramble on till the end of time, I’ll post the key points of my thoughts on this amazing masterpiece. Let’s jump right into it!

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“Alice in Borderland” Season 1 revolves around three friends: Arisu, Karube, and Chota. They find themselves transported to a parallel world after Tokyo suddenly becomes empty. This mysterious world is filled with dangerous challenges and life-or-death games.

To survive, Arisu and his friends must participate in these deadly games, where failure means death. Each game presents unique obstacles and puzzles that they must overcome using their wits, skills, and teamwork. They encounter masked adversaries, solve intricate puzzles, and face constant danger.

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As they play the games, they uncover clues and secrets about the parallel world and its inhabitants. They learn that their survival depends on winning the games and unraveling the mysteries surrounding the enigmatic “Borderland.” Along the way, they meet other participants with their own motives and struggles.

The trio’s bond is tested as they face unimaginable challenges, confront their fears, and question their own identities. They discover that their actions in the games have consequences not only for themselves but also for the people they encounter.

Although their journey together doesn’t last long, Arisu carries the pain of separating with his friends throughout the season and it provides him with enough fuel to keep fighting to finish the games and go back to his real life. He finds a group of survivors, grows his skills, and learns about the true nature of humans through deaths and trials.

The season concludes with a thrilling climax that leaves some questions unanswered but sets the stage for further exploration of the parallel world and the characters’ fates.


The main characters of the series were Arisu, Usagi, Karube, Chota, Hatter, Chishiya, Kuina, Aguni, and Niragi. Some characters depart the series faster than the others. Most of the characters are well-written. Even though we only got 8 episodes in this season, we get to see enough backstory for each to understand their motive and drive to make it through the games. We’re yet to see more about Chishiya, Aguni, and Hatter, but we have already seen glimpses of the rest.

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Arisu, Usagi, Karube, and Chota have comparatively flat arcs by the end of this season, however, the other characters’ backstories reveal that they’ve been through a great trial. There are telltale signs of growth in each of their characters.

Of course, Arisu has more potential to grow in the next season.


The pacing of the episodes were just right. Each episode had one game in it. There were no cliffhangers and I could rest between two episodes. However, some scenes were a little too dragged out, and they could have been cut short. Other than that, the over pace for the season was alright and entertaining enough.

Ending (with Spoilers)

Season 1 ended with a great cliffhanger. One of the gamemakers is revealed and we learn that the characters will now face the bosses in face card games. Needless to say that these games will be even harder and more brutal, and we can expect them to go through some heavy losses to get through to the end.

But the real question is, after the characters have cleared all the games, can they go back to their old world?

My Thoughts

Alice in Borderland was overall an entertaining watch. It took me around 2 days to finish the first season, and I jumped right into the second one. Apart from a few scenes, the whole series kept me on the edge of the seat. This show is definitely worth the watch. I still want to know:

  • Will Arisu and the others manage to survive till the end?
  • Will they go back to the real world after the games?
  • Who is creating all these games and forcing people to play them?
  • How did Arisu and his friends come to the Borderlands? How and when did the others arrive?
  • Will they remember each other after all this is over?

I guess we’ll have to wait till the next season to get our answers to all these questions.

Rating: 4.5/5


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