'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (2023)

Season 2 of Alice in Borderland has finally dropped on Netflix after a two-year-long hiatus, and fans and characters alike finally got some well-earned answers to their many questions. Or did they? Arisu (Kento Yamazaki), Usagi (Tao Tsuchiya), Chishiya (Nijiro Murakami), Kuina (Aya Asahina), and all other survivors of the hellish Borderland are finally safe and sound back home, albeit with no recollection of what happened to them. Viewers, on the other hand, learned that the characters they had been following for two seasons were actually trapped in a sort of limbo after a meteor fell on the Tokyo district of Shibuya, killing or gravely injuring everyone around. Sounds like a pretty definitive conclusion to the tale of a young man and his friends transported to another world where they are forced to play twisted life-and-death games. However, right at the last second, Alice in Borderland reveals that it still has a card up its sleeve - and a Joker, nonetheless. It’s quite possible that things aren’t exactly what they seem. Here are 12 questions we still have after Alice in Borderland’s Season 2 finale, and that we hope will be answered in a third run.


11/11 Were Arisu and His Companions Really in Limbo?

'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (1)

In the eighth episode of Season 2 of Alice in Borderland, Arisu and Usagi face off against Mira (Riisa Naka) in a final game of hearts. Meanwhile, their companions are trapped between life and death after their fight against the King of Spades. After Arisu and Usagi emerge victorious, everyone that has managed to survive up to that point is given a choice between returning to their original world or remaining in Borderland as citizens. Apart from Yaba (Katsuya Maiguma) and Banda (Hayato Isomura), the two psychos Chishiya meets at the penitentiary, and all survivors choose to return home. They wake up in a hospital with no recollection of each other or of the games. It turns out that they were all hit by a meteor that fell on the Shibuya region of Tokyo and were sent to a sort of limbo while they waited to be rescued. Those that died in the games simply didn’t make it.

But is that the actual truth? During the Queen of Hearts game, Mira tries repeatedly to convince Arisu and Usagi that Borderland isn’t real, and that they are, in reality, somewhere else. She goes through all the clichés of otherworld narratives, from “you are actually in a video game” to “you are both patients at a psychiatric hospital”. The only classic scenario she doesn’t cover is the death/near-death experience. Is it possible that this limbo narrative is simply another ploy by Mira and/or her comrades to keep Arisu and the others trapped in Borderland? Sure, Arisu eventually managed to see through all of Mira’s lies during the Queen of Hearts game, but could this be the one time in which he fell for it?

10/11 What Is the Difference Between Dying in the Games and Choosing to Become a Citizen?

But let’s say that this limbo thing is actually real, at least for now. If, in the end, the only choice the characters have is between coming back to life or not, then what is the difference between dying in one of the games and choosing to become a citizen of Borderland? Are the citizens not really dead, but instead perpetually caught between life and death? Or is dying in the games akin to passing over to another realm, while choosing to become a citizen means that you will be forever trapped in limbo? Do you become a spiritual creature of sorts, a demon or angel of death, if you stay out of your own volition?

'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (2)

9/11 If That Was the Afterlife, What Was up With All the Animals Roaming Around?

Another question that comes from believing that Arisu and his companions were actually in limbo this whole time is why were there all those animals roaming around to be hunted or even to hunt players during the games? If Borderland is actually a world in which humankind and its constructs are being slowly replaced by nature, then the menagerie of animals that Arisu and the others see throughout the city, from elephants to bunnies, makes a lot of sense. But if that is just another realm of existence, then what’s the deal with all those creatures? Were they put there so that the players wouldn’t know that they were not actually alive? Or were they a product of the players’ collective imagination? Or, perhaps, the animals are also trapped between life and death, and the more exotic species were actually living in some nearby zoo.

RELATED: 'Alice in Borderland' Season 2: Why Is the King of Clubs Always Naked?

8/11 What About the Rapidly Growing Vegetation?

The number of wild animals roaming around isn’t the only thing that points to a world in which nature is taking over. There is also the matter of the rapidly growing vegetation in and around the city. Okay, so maybe the mountains and the woods around Tokyo are there to keep the victims of the meteor locked inside the place in which their bodies are, but what’s the deal with the overgrown grass and the vines swallowing the buildings? One possibility is that they are there to represent the passage of time, and that they are growing ever faster because the longer the victims of the meteor take to be found, the smaller their chances of survival are.

7/11 Why Were the Characters Able to Move All Around Tokyo in Borderland?

'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (3)

But if the mountains are supposed to keep the victims of the meteor near the place in which their physical bodies are, why are the characters of Alice in Borderland able to visit different parts of Tokyo? Right after Arisu and company first escape from the King of Spades, Ann (Ayaka Miyoshi) separates herself from the group and goes out on a mission to leave Tokyo. She manages to get to the outskirts of the Japanese capital, but finds out that the city is surrounded by mountains, and thus she is unable to go on. However, the meteor didn’t hit all of Tokyo, just the Shibuya region. So if only the people, animals, and things hit by the meteor were “transported” to Borderland, why is all of Tokyo fair game?

6/11 Why Didn’t the Characters Arrive All Together in Borderland?

In Season 1, right in their first game, Arisu, Karube (Keita Machida), and Chota (Yuki Morinaga) meet a woman named Saori (Ayame Misaki) that has been in Borderland for quite some time. This tells us, from the get-go, that not everyone arrived at Borderland together. However, they were all around the same area when they were hit by the meteor, which means that they were struck and fell unconscious at about the same time. If that’s the case, why is there such a big difference between when each of them arrived in Borderland?

And then there’s the matter of the citizens. After beating all the numbered cards’ games in Season 1, Arisu, Usagi, and the others emerge into a new stage in which they must battle the face cards. Each one of these cards is represented by one or more people that claim to be the real citizens of Borderland. As we learn in the finale, the citizens are players that managed to complete all the games and chose to remain in Borderland instead of returning home. But if the citizens that Arisu and his friends meet were also victims of the meteor strike, how come they managed to complete the games so much earlier than the others? Are they perhaps victims of another cataclysmic event? Or is it possible that it is all a ruse?

5/11 What Does the Joker Mean?

Like we said in Question 1, there is a strong possibility that none of this is real and that our characters are still trapped in the games. And Mira’s lies aren’t the only indicator that there might be something wrong. At the end of the season’s final episode, right before the credits roll, the camera zooms in on a table of playing cards. Then, a gust of wind blows all the cards off the table until only one remains: a Joker. Now, there was never a Joker game in Alice in Borderland. Both characters and viewers always assumed that there were only numbered and face cards to be collected. Therefore, the sudden appearance of this Joker might indicate that the characters haven’t yet beat all the games of Borderland. Furthermore, in popular culture, the Joker is frequently associated with madness and deceit. Thus, it would be no surprise if we found out in an upcoming season that Arisu and his companions are all living in a fantasy world.

'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (4)

4/11 Was the Meteor Strike Just a Freak Accident or Is It Part of a Larger Plan?

This, in turn, begs the question of whether the meteor strike was just a weird accident or part of a plan from a so far unknown entity. After all, in order for Arisu and his friends to be living a lie, the meteor’s fall has to have been forged. In this case, who was responsible for it?

3/11 Why Do the Citizens Create and Participate in the Games?

Whether or not the meteor is real, there’s no denying that all citizens of Borderland were once players just like Arisu. Then why did they decide to keep creating and participating in games once they chose to stay behind? Are they somehow forced to do so? Do they have their own sort of visa? Or are they all just psychos, like Yaba and Banda, who believe that Borderland is indeed a better world?

2/11 Who Organized the Games?

'Alice in Borderland': 11 Unanswered Questions After Season 2 (5)

When Season 1 ended, viewers were led to believe that Mira was the great mastermind behind all the games. After all, it was her face that Arisu, Usagi, Chishiya, and Kuina saw on the game station’s screen after they collected all the numbered cards. However, in Season 2, we learn that Mira is nothing but a pawn in someone else’s larger game, just like all the other citizens of Borderland. But if she’s not the one behind everything Arisu and his friends went through, who is the real brain behind the games?

1/11 What Was the Sound That the Woman in the Film Heard?

In Season 2, Episode 4 of Alice in Borderland, Arisu and Usagi come across a massacred commune in which they find a Super 8 film with a woman’s account of how she came to be in this otherworld. The woman claims to remember hearing a sound before being transported to Borderland - a sound other than the fireworks that all players heard and saw before being taken. However, the film ends before the woman has time to tell her entire story. What was that sound that this woman claims to have heard? Was it the meteor hitting Shibuya? Or was it something else entirely? Here’s hoping a third season will give us the answer to these questions.


What does the end of Alice in Borderland Season 2 Meaning? ›

When offered the chance to leave the Borderlands, Chishiya opts to return home. He wakes up next to Niragi in the hospital, where they both receive treatment for heart attacks, said to be a result of a meteor blast. Chishiya vows that from now on, he'll live a better and more selfless life.

Where did everyone disappear to in Alice in Borderland? ›

Alice in Borderland begins with high school student Arisu and his two besties Karube (Keita Machida) and Chota (Yuki Morinaga) — RIP to those two, we're still not over Seven of Hearts and will never get over it — finding themselves in a Tokyo where most humans have disappeared.

Is there another Alice in Borderland Season 2? ›

The game will now commence. In the second season of the Japanese sci-fi thriller Alice in Borderland, nervous gamer Arisu (Kento Yamazaki) is still trapped in another version of his world: a dystopian Tokyo filled with deadly games he must win in order to survive.

How did Alice in Borderland end? ›

In an attempt to prove her existence, she cuts her wrist in front of him. Eventually, remembering his promise to protect her no matter what, Arisu breaks free of the Queen of Hearts' spell, and returns to Borderland to finish the game. Arisu finishes the game of croquet, bringing an end to the games once and for all.

Will there be season 3 of Alice in Borderland? ›

Netflix hasn't made any official announcements regarding season 3 of 'Alice in Borderland'. But possibilities are high, considering the popularity of both seasons.

Why did everyone disappear in Alice in Borderland? ›

All players in the Borderland were victims of a meteorite attack on Tokyo. Yep, every single one of the characters we know and love were somehow injured by chunks of space rock.

Is Chishiya a villain? ›

Still, at this point, Chishiya is only seen as conniving and shrewd; no one is aware of his past like they are of Arisu's or Usagi's. He is still considered a semi-villain who is trying to survive the game to live by fighting his way out of every game.

Who is the mastermind behind Alice in Borderland? ›

Mira Kano (known as the Queen of Hearts) is one of the main antagonists of the Netflix show and manga series Alice in Borderland, serving as one of the main antagonists of the First Stage/Season 1 (along with the other Game Masters) and the final antagonist of the Second Stage/Season 2.

Is Chishiya alive? ›

Chishiya ends Alice in Borderland just fine. Well, maybe not fine. But he is alive at the end.

Is Alice in Borderland Japan or Korea? ›

Alice in Borderland (Japanese: 今際の国のアリス, Hepburn: Imawa no Kuni no Arisu) is a Japanese suspense manga series written and illustrated by Haro Aso.

Is Alice in Borderland a real story? ›

IS ALICE IN BORDERLAND BASED ON A TRUE STORY? Alice in Borderland is based on an eponymous manga written and illustrated by Haro Aso. The live-action series and the manga are not based on a true story.

Is Alice in Korea in borderland? ›

Alice in Borderland (Japanese: 今際の国のアリス, Hepburn: Imawa no Kuni no Arisu) is a 2020 Japanese science fiction thriller drama streaming television series based on the manga by Haro Aso.

Is aguni still alive Alice in Borderland? ›

Still, Arisu, Usagi, Kuina, Chishiya, Aguni, Akane, Ann, and even Niragi all survive, as do some of the minor players from previous games.

What does the joker card mean in Alice in Borderland? ›

If Alice in Borderland season 3 doesn't happen, however, then the Joker card means something different – suggesting life was the final game.

How did they shoot Alice in a Borderland? ›

The production team built the public restroom of the Shibuya station, the ticket gate, and the road, and everything else was added using CGI. Who knows, the next onscreen scene you see of Shibuya Crossing might be filmed right here!

Does karube and Chota return? ›

Players return to the real world, and forget Borderland

We get to see the emotional reunion between Kuina and the mother who supported her (and the father who didn't). We get it confirmed that Arisu's best friends, Karube and Chota, did die in the meteorite disaster.

What country is Alice in Borderland? ›

Alice in Borderland is a Japanese action-adventure thriller series created by Yoshiki Watabe and Yasuko Kuramitsu based on the manga of the same name by Haro Aso. On December 24, 2020 it was announced that the series was renewed for a Season 2, barely two weeks after its online debut.

Is Alice in Borderland bloody? ›

Alice in Borderland is bloody, violent, and sometimes stingy with narrative facts.

Does Karube come back to life? ›

We then jump back to Arisu back in the real world, with Chota and Karube still alive.

Why is Mira the game master? ›

At the end of the series, Mira is uncovered as the apparent game master. Mira is one of the executive members of The Beach, and it emerges at the end that she had worked undercover behind the scene in the games.

Why did Chota and Karube sacrifice themselves? ›

Saori tries to take the "prize" for herself, but she's stopped by Chota as he and Karube agree to sacrifice themselves in order to allow Arisu to go on. It's an incredibly emotional goodbye, and Arisu can't accept the fact that there's nothing he can do to save his friends this time.

What is the message of Alice in Borderland? ›

For the series, acts of violent selfishness can be the very thing that keeps us from surviving. Not because characters who choose them again and again don't have someone to watch their backs — often, in spite of their harmful behavior, they still do — but because they can get in the way of our desire to live.

Is Alice in Borderland Season 2 Cancelled? ›

In September 2022, Netflix finally confirmed that the long-awaited second season of Alice in Borderland will premiere exclusively on the streaming platform on December 22, 2022. The release date was announced alongside the series' first teaser trailer, which can be seen below.

Who is behind Alice in Borderland? ›

Alice in Borderland (Japanese: 今際の国のアリス, Hepburn: Imawa no Kuni no Arisu) is a 2020 Japanese science fiction thriller drama streaming television series based on the manga by Haro Aso. The series was directed by Shinsuke Sato.

Why is it called Alice in Borderlands? ›

This is a retelling of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" story, with the characters' names reflecting their role in the story (Ryohei Arisu is named after Alice, Yuzuha Usagi is the White Rabbit, etc).

Is Alice in Borderland a hallucination? ›

It's implied that everything that happened in Borderland was a limbo of sorts, either a collective hallucination or a realm between life and death that Arisu experienced during the single minute he was “dead.” “Episode 8” shows what really happened to all of Borderland's survivors.

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