The last episode of Sword Art Online raised plenty of eyebrows as it showed the series’ most graphic episode yet. We’re not gonna spoil it, but it does contain a scene which featured “violence and sexual assault”. The episode was certainly difficult to watch for many, and because of this, Sword Art Online author Reki Kawahara went to twitter to issue an apology for such a “difficult scene”. In particular, he apologized to the seiyuu of the two female characters, Tiese and Ronye, who he thought might have been disturbed while voicing that scene.
— 川原礫;SAO21巻12月7日発売 (@kunori) December 8, 2018
In his tweet, he said that Miss Ishihara (Tiese) and Miss Kondo (Ronye) both played a “painful scene” for many women with great skill. He then thanked them for their work and said “I’m sorry” to both. To this, seiyuu Reina Kondo, who voices Ronye, immediately responded. She thanked the author, and said that she has become stronger for the scene.
In a separate tweet, he said that the episode made his novels look more “extreme”. He says that the content of his novels are “extremely average” in terms of how gritty it is. However, he added that the directing, animation, and voice acting in the anime were too powerful. The author also said that they greatly boosted the impact of these scenes.