Friday, 30 June 2017

MT Series Scan: Raildex S 4 & 3

I am a SLOW binge-watcher (and reader). Two hours is about my limit, after which I need processing time. I also enjoy watching online reviewers, and reactions to things that I’ve previously watched, so why not take the time during a slow binge to chronicle my own reactions and speculations?

Today we’re looking at A Certain Scientific Railgun S (Disc 4) with A Certain Magical Index (Disc 3). I decided to watch this universe chronologically, jumping back and forth - but that was before discovering that their plots run totally SEPARATE here at the end, which would mean jumping plots back and forth. Soooo, not going to do that.

After giving it some thought, I’ve changed my mind again. I’m going to run through 3 more “Index” episodes, to actually play the series straight for once. (Partly since the “Railgun S” Febrie plot is an anime only thing). Then I’ll double back to finish “Railgun S”, closing this post on what's likely to be the stronger note.

So, as we left off, Toma was apparently descended from Angels, on account of his Dad. Who has recently been part of some Ritual to change everybody’s appearances - maybe because he doesn’t want Toma to know who he is? Or that’s my take, anyway. Let’s see if (how?) the series corrects me.


*Magical Index Disc 3*


16 Toya Kamijo


Stream of Consciousness:
-The OP is sort of growing on me. Tsuchimikado says he’d snuck into “enemy territory”. But he can’t use magic now, having taken the esper curriculum? (Interesting.) Idols contain some power? Toma chats with Tsu, who apparently looks like Hitotsui Hajime (an “idol guy”, idol of a different type, cute). While Kanzaki looks like Stiyl, well, that’s funny. (Though wasn’t CoughingGuy Stiyl? Mapping isn’t one-to-one?) Toma’s dad also has Egyptian artifacts. (That’s not suspicious.) Kanzaki has GOOD fortune, versus Toma’s bad? Oooh. Was a priestess and saint with power of God. (Toma’s “not God again” talk works for me.)
-Kanzaki wants a bath, but looks like a guy, that’s a problem (though she has good luck, ne?). Oh, hi fan service! (She is not a loli.) Dad shows up, pulls Toma in. Semi-sigh, at least it’s not being held out for laughs. Gay, well, that’s reasonable. Toma fits the piece in about his Dad’s physical appearance. Now Misha, Dad says go for it. (Why does Dad see Misha as a woman, not a changed person? C’mon, guys, clue in.)
-Toma tries a “tuna” pun. Then offers gum? Toma wonders about why “Angel Fall”. Take the rank of an angel? Incomplete so far. Index’s voice talking about Toya, awkward. All of them sleeping together is MORE awkward!! Well, the Index-Sim got crunched, so that’s nice. Index-Mom is going all the way home?! Misha goes with. She took gum from his right hand, ooooh, hmmm. I missed that.
-Sorcerer dispute. They even checked British Library (heh, ROD). So how does Misha know? (They’re casting doubt on Misha, ehhh, but then why would she try to attack Toma before? To deflect?) Not sure I buy this. (Dad could have been trying to deflect onto Misha.) Now they’re taxi-ing on the wrong(?) track. Toma goes into the house. Aww, an old drawing he made. Tsu sees something, says don’t touch. And Toma now sees the pictures of Actual Dad. *dingdingding* Mom and Misha arrive, Mom sees “idol guy”, oy. (But cleverly set up.)
-Stop Misha from killing Dad. Nearly hit by truck. Himegami? (I don’t remember her anyway.) Craaazy driving. Does he tell Kanzaki? Yaaay, he does. She’ll take over, but Toma says no. Goes to confront Dad. NEXT: A fearsome being, and something about Tsu.

Thoughts and Theories:
 It was a clever attempt to deceive with Misha, but I saw through it. Points for the misdirect though, as I wasn’t 100% certain. Extra points because it makes Misha important to the plot, more so than those Knights from the vampire arc. And the backstory was good. Both Kanzaki’s, and the idea that Tsu once used magic, but now can’t, not without it harming him. I’m being pulled back on board. (Less Index on screen may be helping.)
 They’ve also set up how an idol can “have a piece of something”, meaning Dad likely bought a souvenir and is under the influence of evil that way. (My “descended from angels” theory is out.) So I guess Toma will be able to banish the being into the open (Tsu said not to touch something at home) and then Kanzaki can destroy it? With someone running interference for Misha too. Or maybe Misha will tackle the ritual site instead. (Aside: I looked up ‘Himegami’, and it’s Aisa. I’m so bad with names. Interesting that she was a “grown up” version.)


17 The Power of God


Stream of Consciousness:
-Dad being a sorcerer, it’s a long story. Toma was a jinx, people avoided him, sent to Academy City away from superstition, still no luck. So occult superstition to eliminate people's superstitions. Toma was happy with his path; Dad thinks this is about “good luck” souvenirs. So it’s NOT him? (Oh no, it’s Tsu??) Misha don’t care. Kanzaki says this is not Misha? Sasha’s the one from Russia? Being of no fixed gender portrayed as dual gender, they wouldn’t switch? (I’m with Toma, whaaaat?) Misha’s an angel called “Power of God”?? Okay show, you win for it being her all along. 
-Nice design in the sky. World destruction? This is not a man’s fight. (Niiiice.) They need to stop the spell. Kanzaki in charge, hopes Toma will save her in the end. (Very protagonist.) Weird water effects here. Tsu got away, but is talking sacrifice, uhhh. Kanzaki’s not just any member of the Cross, Japanese fusion of diverse religions. Interesting reasoning, yet she’s losing ground.
-Other people now asleep? Dad needs explanation, Tsu arrives. (Tsu made a deal to get magic back?) Hmm, Tsu says it WAS Dad, but he has no memory of it. (Well, Toma knows about no memory.) The ritual was at his house, and ACCIDENTAL due to feng shui, that’s amazeballs. House left empty, it activated - but if they’d interfered, even more serious spell might have unleashed, oy oy. It must all be destroyed at once. Or they take out Dad. Gah.
-Tsu kung fu. Dad stands up for his son. Toma stands, Tsu says they’re enemies then. “Nothing-up-my-sleeves” magic? Origami? He activates the world of Fushigi Yugi (well, that’s where I know it from). That’s a pistol? Shikagami spirit bullet. This magic takes it’s toll. But he won’t stop. Tsu’s a liar? The bullet was aimed at the house. “Power of God” crumbles away. They’re all down and out. (So Toma FAILED for once, that’s nice to see.)
-Toma’s back in the hospital? “What was it for.” Tsu’s still there though?! That was the lie, he has body regeneration and still some magic power. He’s a counterspy? Pretending to be with the Church?! (I like this guy.) Heh, but that’s a lie, he’s hired by everyone (and is basically Garak-Lite from DS9). His parents can stay in their old house, which was a rental unit. Index. >.< He strangled her, buried her and hit her with a door (he says that last wasn’t him). Okay, that bite was deserved. NEXT: Toma and Mikoto have to pretend to be on a date?

Thoughts and Theories:
 *applause* Well played. Had me tricked, all the way through, and yet there were hints of it I picked up on, so that it made sense in retrospect. Also, Toma isn’t invincible, he had to take the assist on this one, and even then it was Tsuchimikado who picked up the assist. (It’s good that he can’t do everything.) The religious tie-ins feel better connected. When this series stops trying to play itself for laughs (with Index...), it works well. The hospital felt like a bit of a stretch this time though.
 Next ep seems to synch back up with “Railgun” after their Febrie-arc around their Ep 24 (and Mikoto seemed to be with a shorter version of herself in the OP?). So I’ll watch that, then switch back to finish “Railgun S” in it’s entirety. I figure it has to be standalone outside arcs, since “Index II” technically starts right after it. (Oh you, “To Aru” continuity...) Maybe Index will do something magically USEFUL for once?


18 Replica


Stream of Consciousness:
-Heh, Toma lampshades the nosebleed excitement anime issue. Index, biting him and being irrational. Math workbook? He has homework to do in 24 hours, before school resumes. OP. Misaka and a probationary maid, who wants passion manga. Unabara Mitsuki who now? Apparently he’s been hitting on her (in theory while she’s been dealing with Febrie, huh). Guy can’t take a hint. TOMA can’t take a hint either. “Please play along”. Heh, they’re being observed by Kuroko, Mikoto runs.
-Unabara’s the grandson of the school director, so she can’t zap him away. She wants many people to see them so Unabara gets the hint. Euhhhh... ‘k? But he needs to do homework. Mustard face. (They’re gonna trade hotdogs?) Oh brother. Mikoto, you’re funny. So there’s less than 10 “Misaka” clones in city, others are elsewhere. HAhaha, is this what people in love discuss. He’s paying attention to her though, his pencil lead dropped out. Aww, she’s helping him. “How come you can’t solve these”, heheh.
-Unabara, just Toma's luck while she’s away. HAH, now Unabara’s helping Toma. Mikoto’s like, “stick to the plan”. Toma says Unabara’s a nice guy. (Heh, they’re still eating, like Mikoto didn’t want with Unabara. Oh no, not MacRonall’s.) Unabara’s back... but he’s also in the store with a bandaged arm? Espers who alter their appearance? Uhoh. (Magic? Why not esper?) Yay, Magical Powered Kanamin! Describes the guy, the knife is obsidian (Index is USEFUL, WHOA). Mimics by taking some skin. Ooooh. And Toma hangs up, I thought it’d be Sphinx’s fault.
-(It’s WEIRD that Unabara’s still after Toma though. Why, because he played boyfriend? Wouldn’t finding a new disguise be a better plan?) Sand to block light. Hit with right hand to fracture disguise, nice. OH, he went after Mikoto to get to Toma to get to the grimoires? That's... really roundabout. “The Kamijo Forces”?? o.O So it’s not roundabout, he’s just a nut. The “higher ups” gave him this job? He does like Mikoto, that’s why, hmm hmm, just wanted to report back not do this. Why are these beams falling?
-It’ll hit him, but no, Mikoto’s there. Oh, er, they did hit him. UnabaraReplica says protect Mikoto, as the attacks will continue. Toma says something we can’t hear. “The worst possible answer.” Mikoto is red, thinks he spoke without thinking (so he said something like he cares about her). But she accepts that she has trouble dealing too. NEXT: A mysterious girl talking to Accelerator (mini Clone??).

Thoughts and Theories:
 Okay, yup, I can see why the “Railgun” series’ would resynch with that plot. It’s kicking off another Accelerator arc, but can stand alone, while cementing the friendship/relationship between the two protagonists. “Index” seems to enjoy jumping back and forth from Magic arc to Science arc... gradually melding the two, I suppose. Except there’s no way Accelerator can do magic, so I wonder where they’re going? And didn’t Upside-Down guy recruit Toma, so what Church is against him? Another day.

 In light of all this, new predictions for “Railgun S”: I still think Crazy Scientist puts Mikoto in touch with ITEM, and they have to work together. Her friends run things on the Assembly side, to prevent the science group from knowing Mikoto’s breaking in to get the data, which Shinobu somehow left for her. They’ll also keep Febrie alive (someone in hospital with her, Haru’ue?), and Febrie’s DNA can run interference against her own sister, maybe? Not sure about Kongo, and Misaki was a really weird entry to Episode 1 and the OP of this show, since we never see her again. (Guess it was to show level 5s don’t get along?)


*Railgun S Disc 4*


22 STUDY


Stream of Consciousness:
-Therestina again. OP. ITEM crew in a pool, uhh. ^_^ Manipulated by disinformation? (I like how one of them is just water hovering.) Mikoto losing hope, unlikely, but saying Academy City is a test site isn’t far off. Therestina knows about the clones too. Mikoto’s looked at the darkness, and got desperate, but her friends saved her, and she wouldn’t have met them otherwise, true, true. “What if I lie?” Hmmm. Says she’ll believe. Finally, Chemicaloid. Consider people who can’t be lab rats, who aren’t level 5, HUH.
-Judgement, Mikoto catches them up. Suspicion on the doctor? Uiharu database check. Kongo and friends, with cute outfit. Now identified Aritomi Haruki, top prizes every year. But it’s “ordinary genius”. He’s not there this year. Shinobu gets No Data, meaning Lab One.
-Aritomi dropped out of school, Saten says it’s too bad, she likes non-espers doing things. Kuroko says not enough data to act yet. Mikoto worries, if not a level 5, would things be the same for her? Kuroko likes who she is, immature leaning, and no mercy in punishment, heh. STUDY Corp? Aritomi directing? Own a factory they paid a lot for, odd. Mii plays find the Gekota, heh.
-Bridge causes a Toma flashback. HAHAHA, she calls CookieBoy self-indulgent. But still have to believe. Tresspass! It’s a decoy site, Shinobu will go check. It’s NOT Mikoto (yet) it’s ITEM, Ooooooh. They beat up robots. Again nobody there. (Shinobu hired them?) Sneak attack. So remote handling? With hair as a receiver, Level 5 Grade powers. Mikoto investigates what’s left.
-Shinobu face-off. Couldn’t think of anyone else to turn to. Nice coincidence meeting here. NOPE. Aritomi says the data’s a dummy, this was a test. (Never easy.) ED. He thanks Railgun for her data. She name calls him. He says real recipe data would be destroyed with electrics. Stun Mikoto, Mikoto says do it. He destroys the data. (Knew it.) Name drops Janie. NEXT: Heh “long story”, with last chance as Febrie collapses onna roof.

Thoughts and Theories:
 They’re apparently feeling pressed for time, running overtop of the ED twice now. They could have cut back elsewhere (like the jail scene). Anyway, guess it was too much to hope that Mugino and Mikoto would (could) work together; I bet the ITEM plot is totally done now.
 So, STUDY has computers hooked into their chemicaloid, Janie, which allows them to manipulate all the robots. Febrie can do it too (we saw that) but it weakens her. Aritomi and them are not attending the Assembly because they’re going to ATTACK it, showing the non-espers that the espers of the City can’t keep them safe (or something), meaning non-espers should rise up (or something). Makes sense in my head.
 So how will that be defeated? Hmmm. They’ll triangulate based on the traffic outages, maybe using Febrie as a divining rod, to get to where the green robots are being hidden. Mikoto seems to have Febrie, so perhaps rushing her to the others, with the cure, so they can help her while she doubles back to kick ass? The next ep will end off with a big face-off with Aritomi. The last one will wrap things up in the first half (speech by Saten?), then the second half will be that date thing to wrap up the Toma arc.
 How will my expectations be shattered this time?


23 Silent Party


Stream of Consciousness:
-Aritomi recalls his speech to a mostly empty room. Now believes espers are the only ones who aren’t neglected. (But aren’t they? It’s perspective.) Says “ability is an uncertain thing”, it’s chance, so made his own more stable esper. (He’s monologuing.) OP. (I do like the OP.) Shinobu says he’s being petty. He talks about recruiting, overhearing Dr. Gensei speak of “Level 6 Shift” compared to their “arts and crafts”. “So what’s their ability?” He's given enough clues, heh.
-Mikoto wakes, can’t move for another two hours. Nunotaba says after she was caught, she was sold to STUDY (gyuh, creepy). Their work was based on her thesis. Her sins follow her, which is why she wants to fix this. (Nice callback.) “Diffusion Ghost” core. Planned to run away with Janie once she had the formula, now can’t. But will save those girls. Mikoto says her sisters give thanks, there are people who can help. Yipes, she’s using her electricity to control her body?! (Yeah, that’ll hurt.) “You count on someone and someone counts on you.
-Intruders, it’s her friends, heh heh. Saten’s monitoring. Mikoto had a tracking device, oh niiiice. I’m a human stun gun, hee. Shinobu stays, or the underworld would be against her then. (Nice excuse.) Hmm, without her they’d need to use the “whip” on Janie?? Also, “Ghost” power converts AIM Diffusion field into virtual matter that can be controlled. OH! Uiharu calls back to how Dr. Kiyama’s Diffusion Field materialized. But control? Commands are there before the field materializes (e.g. “eliminate anyone who attacks you”). They CAN use Febrie to track her sister, but only once Janie’s ability starts. (Hah!)
-Find powered suits. Call AntiSkill, still not enough for higher-ups. But Yomikawa’s heard of STUDY corp, they’re funding the AntiSkill equipment, ohhoho. And she’s suspended. Teehee, but with Komoe. Uiharu has locations, arrivals match blackout events. Kongo’s in, she has suit data, via her dad. Over 20,000 of these things. But through channels, nothing illegal, stuck until they make their move.
-Mikoto troubled by selfish worries. Saten beats Kongo to the punch. Everyone else jumps in, even Kongo’s friends. And CookieBoy in flashback. Aomi call from Mii? (I don’t remember her.) Kongo’s father. More plans. Makes it look like both girls are in one bed, heh. Ohh, NOW she gives the four leaf clover? Neat callback. The clones called Mikoto too?? Final execution vote. On roof, it’s time. ED. Activation. They’re in position. Heh, Saten in baseball gear. Febrie divining rod, off we go. Another ED still shot. NEXT: The still shot in colour ohhhh, both chemicaloid girls are there.

Thoughts and Theories:
 I forgot “Railgun” takes it’s time (they do sort of have a larger cast). Props for really weaving in this “count on your friends” thread though, from the lone girl Sisters Arc. New plan: They’ll have a bunch of cutting between different fights, recalling that these mechs were built to withstand attacks from Level 5s (but perhaps not less conventional attacks). At the central complex, Mikoto will have the biggest battle. That will bring us to the halfway. Then bid Shinobu adieu as she takes the blonde lolitas away. We’ll just get a still of Mikoto seeing Toma at the end or something, and hopefully the Balloons ED which we haven’t seen in a while.
 I must say, the whole “Assembly” event is a little weird, as they don’t seem to be using it at all. Guess the science guys just decided not to go to it this year out of frustration... but then why did Aritomi visit? Why is that day relevant? Symbolism? Oh, and I guess Aritomi will have to be arrested, and not get away, since he’s anime only. Let’s get to it.


24 Eternal Party


Stream of Consciousness:
-Flashback to Shinobu letting Febrie go, over the OP credits. The Misakas are also in on this? Everyone’s ready, battle music. Judgement shows up?! (Since AntiSkill can’t.) They pull a Shirai armband tug, hehheh. (Didn’t see that coming.) Sister’s Noise song returns. Kuroko’s friends got COMBO skills. “They’re better than I expected.” Hee hee. Where is Railgun? Yup, she found you.
-Yup, extra robots. "Esper weakness is eventual fatigue, I have the numbers" speech. "On my own it’s difficult, but now things are different" speech back. Backpack Febrie. He prepared for it! Scenario B7. Signal interference, can’t communicate. And human powered mechs now. Including pseudo-Meltdowner bots, based on their testing, okay for continuity. Aritomi's a planner.
-Antiskill with Haru’ue in a big vehicle as we get the SECOND OP theme, ahahahah, oh NICE. Banri is coordinating a network of telepaths since communications are down? Saten was reading a manual for how to control that thing?! EEEEEEEE! Saten’s in a mech built by Kongo’s Dad’s company, EEEEEE Saten. Ecaterina II! Pfffffft, cockpit alignment lets Saten see up Uiharu’s skirt. While Mikoto deflects the Meltdowner blast to remove video feed. I’m loving this. ^.^
-“Damn espers” “I’m a level 0 you know!” EEEEEE, Saten. Okay Uiharu, you can have some control to be special. Wait, the REAL Mugino’s there now?! (Did NOT call that.) With the others. She won’t bother with Railgun today. Heh “don’t make eye contact with them”. Commercial!
-Aritomi feels they haven’t been beaten yet. He’s doing Final Phase, but they didn’t vote. Then he’s going to kill himself so they can’t stop it?? Mikoto shifts the gun, oooooh. Callback to Accelerator, who had power but wanted more, while Aritomi did inhuman things for power. But strong or weak isn’t relevant, the promise to help Febrie and the city is important. (So what now?)
-Other scientist says it can’t be stopped: 5,000 filaments over the city, the Ghost ability triggers a decay chain, with equipment in stationary orbit 35,000 km overhead. (Well, I see where this is going.) The missile’s already approaching from there. Can’t stop it - all by myself. (I did not see where this was going.) Communications back, Febrie’s done her candy, so Shinobu will handle that. (What’s this music in the background? An ED?)
-“Misaka appearing with superb timing.” HAhahaHAHAHAHAHa YES. At 30,000 km it splits. Mikoto trades with Saten, who gets extra candy from Aritomi to Febrie while she gets the mech... (WAY too convenient given location, but I’ll allow it) ... and they can free Janie this way too. Saten and looove. Misakas have it all calculated, Kuroko’s with her in the launch.
-CLASSIC RAILGUN THEME. Oh, they’re even getting Gekota into this. Misaka helps here too “seeking retroactive approval” OH MY GOD THIS SHOW. Misaka 19090. Kuroko teleports them out, oh, WTF?? RAILGUNNING A MECH? Falling from the sky, like Ep 1. (Waaaay too much happened there.) Febrie made some rice? Shinobu’s never had a gift before? D’awwwwww. ED as they’re falling like a star. Then they’re napping at the Assembly.
-Cut to final appearances. Janie gets Kuroko’s good luck charm. The record of events was rewritten electronically. But also mentally? WAIT, THEY’RE CALLING BACK TO MISAKI INDIRECTLY HOW DARE YOU, YOU BRILLIANT LUNATICS. Heh, Frog-Doc is with the Misakas. Toma’s in class, huh? Because there’s afternoon lectures? (Okaaay, THAT’S harder to fit into continuity. I guess if we infer this ED stuff takes place days later, that makes sense.) “Never a dull moment.” Indeed.

Thoughts and Theories:
 There was laughter and tears. All the squee. But they kind of threw everything at the screen there (except OP and ED), and did they really EARN doing that? I’ll need to think about it. (Also, to say that “episode 18 of Index takes place during episode 24 of Railgun” basically means it’s sandwiched in between the end of the episode and the start of the ED...)

 Okay, had a day to think it over. They didn’t earn that. But they came close. Chronologically: Judgement showing up. They hand waved that, but I’ll buy it. The signal interference, and telepath workaround, that wasn’t earned, too far out of left field. (Scenario B7 should have only been the new mechs.) The Ecaterina II mech to counter B7 was earned, they set that up via Kongo. (Also, I love Saten piloting it, and her “I’m a Level 0” remark.)
 Mugino and the ITEM crew was a misstep, their arc was done, this added nothing. Aritomi killing himself and Mikoto stopping him, earned. The Decay Chain, I’m sorry, no, putting the whole city in jeopardy was NOT needed here. Killing Janie would have been enough. Maybe set some of the robots to self destruct, needing Kuroko to teleport them into one place for Mikoto to destroy them, while Saten and the Misakas helped get through to Janie (THAT was well done). And the Misakas should have only helped THEN, doing extra calculations took away from Uiharu time, that’s something she should have handled herself. And railgunning the mech really wasn’t earned, nor was the callback to Misaki’s “Mental Out”. Use of that time of learn Aritomi’s fate would be better. But there were nice subtleties through there too, like the callback to Accelerator, or Gekota.

 So they earned about 6 of those, and another 6 were unearned, meaning (with the music giving a bonus) it was good on balance, but someone probably should have suggested toning it down just a tad, because 12 plot points in a single episode is a lot. ^_^ I’d watch it again though, in a “crazy good” kind of way.
 And that’s it for “Railgun S”. It was August 2015 when I saw “Railgun”, so it was nice to reconnect here. It is a fun universe... even if that last part may have occurred in some parallel universe. Next, we’ll be seeing more of the continuity for the rest of “Index”! (Which seems to take us only as far as the resumption of school.)


***
There's another six episodes. After all that toggling back and forth, all that’s left is “Index” Disc 4 now. (In theory. The continuity is still a bit messed up, as Index II comes first, but we’ll finish it all off with my next post.) Do you have thoughts on “Railgun”? Or the universe? Or the way I summarized? Let me know. Thanks for reading.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

MT Series Scan: Scientific Railgun S 3.5

I am a SLOW binge-watcher (and reader). Two hours is about my limit, after which I need processing time. At the same time, I enjoy watching online reviewers, and reactions to things that I’ve previously watched, so why not take the time during a slow binge to chronicle my own reactions and speculations?

Today we’re looking at A Certain Scientific Railgun S (Discs 3 & 4) with A Certain Magical Index (Disc 3). I’ve been watching this universe chronologically, because I can - meaning only the last episode this post will be “Index”, as continuity is mostly “Railgun” right after the Sisters Arc. (In fact, the coming episodes are likely more with Mikoto’s friends, as they’ve had less screen time lately.) I figure the other Level 5 characters need to return before the end though, plus we see Shinobu’s fate. So let’s see how they do that (if they do that).

*Railgun S Disc 3*

17 Study Group


Stream of Consciousness:
-An after hours pass? Mikoto does have nerve. “A study group” excuse, summer vacation homework. WOW, NEW OP. (They’re separated now, and some girl, then groups, evil scientists - yeah, I’m good with this, it’s jazzy and friendshippy.) So it really is a study group? Saten’s still on about boys. Kitchen flashback? This is kind of adorable. Mikoto will be more careful now. Hehehehehehe, but not with eggs.
-Mikoto and a maid, saying Kuroko was lonely. It’s the clover girls, nice callback. Uiharu book report, and some hacker going after the newspaper club. Kongo’s random appearance. Hahaha, tossing "being alone" back. Pets? Ecaterina, her python, right. Pffft. Oh, it’s Frog-Doctor, with information about Sisters. He explains the rapid growth of 14 years in 14 days. Lifespan of another year or two, unless they’re adjusted at outside facilities. (I hope Kuroko didn’t buy mice, eh heh.)
-At restaurant... EHHH? Frenda and Meltdowner?? Frenda’s a blockhead, pffffft. Heh, weaker general population. Kuroko you’re not helping. Oh my gawd, boob jokes. You show ‘em, level 5s! Stew party. Mikoto, you’re overdoing ingredients? Uiharu is all for veggies. HAH, Kuroko DOES mention the mice. (I love this show.) Soft shell turtle? With blood. Hunhhhn. Oh yeah, Haru’ue, I tend to forget about her.
-Handmade reference... oh Saten, I get you, it IS adorbs. Now noodles. Montage. And back home. So the roomies have “made up” too. NEW ED. (Clover, windmills, all four of them... yeah, yeah, I like this too. *^_^* Wheeee “Railgun”! Oh, adding a fifth figure at end?) NEXT: Scientists are plotting, and a blonde lolita.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Eeeeeeeee, feels. It does feel a little like a plot reboot, as it knots off prior elements and brings the core characters back together. The character traits also got shown off here (like Uiharu with tech). I did not expect to see Mugino in public!
 I now feel like she and Mikoto won’t have a showoff, but will have to (grudgingly) work together somehow. Maybe the blonde lolita of the preview is connected to that blonde Misaki girl, bringing in the other level 5? Which is all wrapped up with the evil scientists? Hmm hmm. I may have more to say once we see said scientists. There were also those little green mecha things in the OP.

18 Moving


Stream of Consciousness:
-The mercenaries, an arms deal, but it’s some plot. UltraGirl has some skills? Aritomi is gathering data, hmmm. Lolita with lollypop. Haru’ue was talking to a teacher? OP!
-Saten asking about Cookie Boy (I like that nickname). Edasaki, I’d forgotten about her hospital thing too, oops. So she and Haru’ue are slipping back into the ether. (Who gets the rice cooker, Uiharu?) A Judgement security mission, “Research Assembly” for smart people. Saten, you’re even nice as exposition girl.
-Kongo scene, she can ham it up. Glasses guy thinks she overstepped? She didn’t assess the situation. Her friends stand up for her. Another mystery! Kuroko’s not used to walking. Making fun? (Don’t drool, Kuroko.) Saten. ^_^ Concern for Uiharu. D’awww.
-Mikoto has flowers again, heh. Cake restaurant. But traffic signal issue. Uiharu still feels like she has to push herself? They’re talking about her. Saten talks to Haru’ue about the move too, nice. (This is like an Uiharu episode.) Wait, who that Mikoto knows is in the hospital...? (CookieBoy again?? Or Misaka maybe.)
-Strange electrics. Uiharu has something weird to do? Banri left. Taiyaki for after? Well, this makes for a nice sendoff then. Now they’re both crying. Shortcut by Saten? Takes us back to plot, the lolita. She’s quiet. Saten got skills. It’s Febri, who recognizes Mikoto. (Or one of her clones?) Scientists talk about having data on Mugino now. They say now is the time? Is he GlassesGuy from with Kongo?? NEXT: Taking care of Febri, and the “Assembly”.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Hmmmmmm. So these scientists may be arguing the reverse of the previous evil scientists. Instead of making a more powerful esper, they’ll be claiming that people with powers are just terrible, and using the Level 5 powers/data in some way to justify that. (Certainly there’s lots of data on Accelerator and Railgun already.) Perhaps they imbued a Febri clone with some aspect of the powers (a level 5 mix?), hoping she’ll spark an incident during the “Assembly” that they can capitalize on? Or they made her immune to the powers they have the data for? (But maybe their data’s on the clones, which isn’t as high?) Eh, pointless speculation.
 Incidentally, it’s good they haven’t forgotten about the characters from late Season One Railgun, but I’m not especially sad to see them go. Maybe since they're anime constructs outside the manga. (So who is the fifth “group member” added in the ED? CookieBoy?)

*Railgun S Disc 4*

19 Academic Reach Assembly


Stream of Consciousness:
-Heh, half-sisters for Mikoto. Kuroko deserves a zap. Febri’s scared? Uh, finger puppet (well, explains the ED). Mikoto has no luck with Gekota merchandise (aside from that button win at the end of one ep). Saten has a little brother, eh? It’s decided, and Uiharu gets company after the move too. OP. (Is this OP never subtitled with Japanese lyrics?)
-Food. Will Febri eat theirs too? Nope, Saten fan service instead. Oh, Mikoto. Oy oy, Kuroko. Hm, bad tasting lollipop? Oh, Saten. No data? “Child Error”? Evil scientists find Febri online. Mikoto talks to the Headmistress, whoa, unexpected. Orphanage, in five days. Also when the “Assembly” is, hmm. (Big day?) Mikoto’s goal.
-Right, the Assembly is “unrelated to abilities” here. (These scientists hate those.) Kongo’s around, her entourage knows someone presenting. Boy, Febri’s easy to please. Awww, Saten senses the Mikoto issue. A truck delivery? (Is that GlassesGuy again? Oh, no, but he’s in the background, mmkay.) So there’s a “target”.
-“Tough customer”. Rainbow gekota out, but Febri’s following a frog. (A setup? Nope, some “not a real frog” fear.) Mikoto’s calling for help this time. (Yet she’ll be the one to find her I bet.) GlassesGuy sees Febri too. Well, yeah, Mikoto can take electronics out. So now Scientists know Railgun’s there. 
-Awww, Febri still runs to Saten. Nice that Mikoto is okay with it. Saten asks for apology (aw, Saten!) and Mikoto gets one. HAHA, to pinch the Gekota back, oh my. So they’re kinda friends, while Kongo and Kuroko argue. Scientists talk about conducting an experiment on Railgun?? NEXT: The scientists are after Febri? (Heh, she narrates with with her lollipop.)

Thoughts and Theories:
 Wait, so Febri’s tied to the scientists, but the scientists aren’t tied to the clone project data? I’m confuuuuuused. OH! Unless Febri has a power to record the power of others, that’s why they use her? But it’s suppressed by lollipops, the same way that AIM Stalker Girl had to pop pills?? Grasping for the straw there.
 Either way, it seems Meltdowner was the original target for their “espers are bad” lecture. At least these scientists seemingly have to vote on everything. Seems like they’ll need to ramp this up soon, since the last battle itself is sure to go a couple eps (like #22 and #23). And since Febri didn’t say Mikoto’s name here, figure that’ll happen towards the end. (Wait, how can the subtitles use a different spelling of her name from what is clearly the next episode title?!)

20 Febrie


Stream of Consciousness:
-Oh, those robots had no power?! Was someone controlling... no how would that even... why is there a purple stick?? OP. (OP includes purple stick, so there’s that.) Saten heads out with Mikoto, who is trying to chip away at the pink Gekota. Kongo is very affected by cuteness. She’s loyal too though. And spots GlassesGuy. (Are these science guys reading Febri’s brainwaves or something??) You go Saten! Do urban legends! Special ice cream, no hands, she is spoiled.
-Oooh, the traffic problem, thanks Kuroko, good point. Mikoto’s ringtone is a frog, heh. Oh no, a bath springs episode?! Kurokoooooo nooooo. Well, Febri’s letting Mikoto wash hair, nice. Awww, Mikoto’s thinking back to the Misakas! And giving away her pink one! And she got named! And the was “always mine” was funny! Kuroko got left behind. See, that’s how you do a bath scene. Short, sweet, funny.
-Uhoh, is Saten getting attached? Uhoh, is Mikoto getting attached? Sidewalk closed? Detour? Suspicious van? Kongo’s been calling? Now the green robot.
-Huh. Immune to her electricity? Ohh, it has no electrical components (so a bit like those tiny robots, which had components but no power). Her electrical dust. Is someone inside? Kuroko with a teleport save. Oh no, the Gekota. System Error?? (Febri did something. Unknowingly.) And Kongo launches in, yup it’s her. No pilot? Weirdness. Febri’s actions knocked her out? The van leaves, and the signal is restored. (So some sort of jamming device.)
-Surveillance cameras were probably knocked out too. Wait, they worked but just didn’t record weirdness? Hmm hmm. It’s a purple stick again. (Mizuho hospital, what’s with Mizuho as a name.) Febri’s feverish and getting worse?? Aww, the Gekota. So their science work IS meant to be immune to the Level 5 powers. Bite the hand that feeds, so they ARE responsible for Febri too?? I think that is Shinobu with ‘em. (Was she released under condition she helped?)
-Mikoto blames herself again. Judgement girls are back. Pffft, with Kongo. Her friends (Wannai and Awatsuki, for reference) went to GlassesGuy, overheard he failed to "retrieve Febri". Keep Kongo in the loop then. Whups, they were out past curfew. Oh, hi frog doctor. Febri’s better, yay! (Thought they might kill her as a clone or something.) Does she remember them? The Doc didn’t do anything - she’s not human? She’s a product of science?? (Whaaat, is she an android?!?) NEXT: Kongo hams it up, she’s there with her snake, and more on the purple sticks.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Did the doctor want to talk to Mikoto because of some connection to the clones? Or are we into artificial intelligence here? Either way, I figure the Science made Febri able to shut down all types of power with that ‘Error’ message (that’s how she got away from them, the day of the traffic issue). That power shutdown is what they’re incorporating in their mechs, worked around with their purple sticks. (Is that what’s in the lollipops too?)
 Is their goal to put powered people in the green mechs, meaning they can’t use their powers? While controlling what they (seem to) do? Lots of questions. Including on Shinobu. I was wrong about the Febri name thing already, she used "Mikoto".

21 Darkness


Stream of Consciousness:
-Doc told Mikoto because of how this goes beyond common sense. When Febrie forms new cells, she forms a toxin? (Were the scientists harvesting it?) The candy neutralizes it. Could be mistake or deliberate. Rumours years ago? Dark organizations outside AntiSkill’s reach? Hmm, the ITEM girls were dealing with such darkness, I wouldn’t have connected it. OP.
-Mikoto don’t liiiiie. We have Cat Callback sign. Misaka spoke to Febrie? (Oh, NOW her subtitle has an ‘e’.) Misaka narrates so well. ^_^ “Hi, I’m a clone.” “Younger sister, huh?” Oh my, Febrie has an older sister?? It’s like clone learning with “Testament”, so "ScornyEyes" is involved. Aaaand once again Mikoto has to go it alone, because “underworld”. (Oh right, guess we’re synching up with “Magical Index” again.)
-Kongo’s worried. And gives a lesson in having your friends be there, aww, share more than the fun times. Except it didn’t sink in? Yet? “I am always here for you.” She tells them all! Also about ITEM. And they’re already plotting. Saten’s on the lollipops and there’s the powered suit, okay, this was nicely in continuity. Shows character growth!
-Saten lampshades Gekota-Doc. Antiskill HQ took all the evidence away. Except the purple stick, forgotten in a drawer. Kongo’s company knows powered suit deals? Kuroko doesn’t want Kongo to show them up, heh. OH WAIT. Misaka wasn’t a clone reference, Shinobu’s trying to get Mikoto involved, knowing she can blow everything wide open?? Febrie is a BACKUP, who will die before the Reach Assembly? Ohhhhhhhh. Janie?
-A fibre of hair in purple stick? But it’s someone else’s. (Older sis, yup.) And only 72 hours to sustain Febrie on candy. Over the ED, they’re going to look (probably consult ITEM?). Doc can arrange a meeting? (With Toma?) Wow, to jail, that was fast. OH NO crazy scientist from original “Railgun”. ED still shot. NEXT: Swimsuits and ITEM.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Well well WELL. It becomes clear(er). Scientists doing something evil (in “Index”), creating a person whose very DNA can remotely control devices. Febrie was made as a backup (for the “Railgun” series), so while the science hopes to retrieve her, they can do without her, and she’ll die soon anyway. Shinobu probably helped Febrie escape, explicitly to bring the “Railgun” people on board (outside of Toma’s “Index” plot) hoping Febrie’s life could be saved... hey, I wonder if “Index” will have a new OP that includes Shinobu??
 As to where we’re going, well, "Index" has swimsuits first. But I figure Crazy Scientist will put Mikoto in touch with ITEM (at a beach?), and Mikoto (and/or her friends) will team up with them to find the lab where science guys are hiding (defended by more green robots). Meanwhile, Toma will end up at the Assembly with Misaka and that weird maid girl (and Index I guess), and they’ll have to prevent whatever science guys are more actively doing to convince everyone that espers can’t save people. I’m probably off the mark. Let’s check in with “Index”.

*Magical Index Disc 3*

15 Angel Fall


Stream of Consciousness:
-Owarai Beach. Index in swimsuit. After "Sisters", Komoe said get out of the city until the heat blows over? Index is an illegal immigrant but wants to come and has ID. Hit with jellyfish. It IS a new OP here. (More techno opening. Flashing around to various people, we see more I recognize from “Railgun”. Then it gets kind of jazzy. Accelerator’s still in here, so are, I don’t even know. Not as much of a fan this time.)
-Toma needs First Aid, Index at least apologizes. Someone coming is delayed? (Oh, it’s his parents, now I remember.) Index is whiny. Oh, caught up to my parents thought fast. Index is now in different robes. Baths scene. Index, get a grip. He doesn’t even remember his parents?? (I thought he only lost a couple weeks? That wasn’t clear before.) Wrong channel, so Index bites him, bleh. Move on please.
-Coughing man, parents there soon. “Dad” was in India. Dad’s kind of onto him, first meeting. They moved last month. Toma has a little sister, Otohime. Or a cousin? Looks a bit like Misaka. Toma’s confused. Why make her look like... oh no. No, no, Mom looks like Index. >.< Toma, don’t be stupid, you haven't met them. Sigh, he’s stupid. (She can look like that, no? If not, play along.) Dad takes charge. Gah, Toma’s STUPIDER. (I guess it’s supposed to be funny.) Now he’s STUPIDEST, even breaks his Dad’s pen?
-Why is Misaka at the Inn?! Dad makes excuses. It’s Magnus who’s not Magnus? Aaaand, that’s not Index, so there really IS funky magic going on. (Right, Magnus ‘coughed’ and Misaka did the nail blowing, that’s subtle at least. Nicely set up, if not obvious.) Toma’s not going to play along at all, huh?
-Now Otohime at the beach. Toma calls her Misaka. (Don’t confuse me even more.) A souvenir from Russia? Aaand that's... not a swimsuit. It has no straps. (Someone has a Lolita Complex but it’s not these characters.) The White House rocked by a scandal? (That gag hasn’t aged well for 2017.) Komoe is acting like a journalist. Pfffffft, okay, the Kuroko is President bit ALMOST makes up for this stupidity.
-Toma’s clued in to how it’s everyone now. (But not outfits, so the beach swimsuit was accurate, yipes.) The old PICTURE is accurate though (cousin has dark hair) even though TV feed wasn’t, hmmm. A shackled blonde?? With belts?? (Very “Fate” from Nanoha vibe.) Toma FINALLY decides to play along with the ONE person who’s not affected by the spell. Oy oy.
-Oh, Kanzaki’s back! With a spiky blond hair guy! Tsuchimikado who? Oh, they’ll look different from who they really are too, makes sense. ... No, it really IS Kanzaki. (Aaaagh!) Russian Orthodox Church, Misha Kruezhev? Okay. (Well, this all points to “Dad” as being the caster, since he hasn't been flagged as looking different either.) “This boy is not a sorcerer, he is an esper”, heh, they’ll be surprised at his level. Kanzaki knows? Calls him on out on not knowing her. Riiight.
-Global Scale Spell named “Angel Fall”. A Sephirotic Tree (like sepharim?). Humans can’t reach an “Angel” rank (I like the diagram there) but now an Angel’s become human? Ha, I like how Tsuchimikado is just eating ice cream. It’s a game of “Musical Chairs” on physical appearances?? Toma’s escaped the effects, so his life is in danger.
-Hmmm, an esper CAN use magic, but it leaves traces?? (That’s different.) Tsuchimikado knows about the Imagine Breaker? (Is it really him, or a ruse?) Misha 86es them, testing Toma’s hand. (Why does she talk like a robot? Also, it’s Toma's Dad doing this.) Destroy a ritual site? Okaaaay, Tsuchimikado is in the Necessarius Church, curveball. ED is the same. NEXT: Talking to Dad, and some truth.

Thoughts and Theories:
 OKAY. Toma’s not even IN THE CITY, meaning while these events are taking place in tandem with “Railgun”, they’re COMPLETELY separate. Having Misaka seemingly present here (from the previews) threw me WAY off course.
 If we stay true to “Arcs are Multiples of 3”, the “Index” plot MAY return in time for the “Railgun” finale (at Index ep #18), and Toma WAS seen in the “Railgun S” OP briefly, so I guess that makes sense. Also, Toma’s descended from angels, what now? Well, let’s just scrap everything I thought I knew.

 *quick research* Okay, so Railgun’s “Silent Party” Arc is indeed ANIME ONLY, much like how “Poltergeist” (and Haru’ue) from Season One were ANIME ONLY. (I guess I should get back to buying more manga after #5.) This explains how Crazy Scientist can be back in continuity there. It looks like the next major crossover isn't until the “Miracle of Endymion” Movie, so I’m not sure what’s happening with Toma in “Railgun” now. I might as well complete my “doing it wrong” viewing by watching the rest of “Railgun S”, then flipping back here for this “Angel Fall” arc?

***
And that's another six episodes. The next post will wrap up the Railgun S series entirely, and push us through to Disc 4 of "Index", in some order. I was SO off base here - did anyone else actually do the research before watching? Did that help? And what was with Febri's name subtitling?? Feel free to comment below, about any of that, about whether you find this sort of post interesting, about whatever. Even if you don't, thanks for reading!

Saturday, 24 June 2017

Not Teaching: Week 51

January is terrible. January 2016 marks the last time I was caught up on all serials, hence why “Catch up with web serials I’ve enjoyed” has been perpetually on the TO DO list. No more! I’ve been pretty good at keeping up within a few weeks of “The Soul Blade”, “Legion of Nothing”, “Redwood Crossing”, "Sanctioned" and “Fantasia”. Now I finally got back to “Twicebound” (the author’s vanished, I hope he’s okay) and “Under Darkening Skies”.
Previous INDEX Next

Also delved into reading comics for the Thursday “Comic Tea Party” chat by StArt Faire. I think if I get get my social media (I’m now on reddit) in order, I’ll cross off “Actually market some of my creative stuff” (another long runner) off as well, because I’ll have done all I can. Ditto for “Weed through/organize emails” as I have slotted in some new folders over the past months, and it’s becoming as good as it’ll get.

One week left. Time flies.

*
Item counts run Sunday (June 18) to Saturday (June 24).

Step Count: About 55,400. 22 stars.
Wed/Thu/Fri were all limping to reach 7500, but no days under that.

School Email Count: 38 New (2 sent)
Probably too busy for much mailing to occur.


Writing/Art Related Items:
 -Drew, inked and coloured strip for last Monday
 -Wrote “Epsilon Project” serial entry
 -Wrote a song parody “We’ll Want Stats”
 -Wrote, drew, inked and coloured strip for next Monday
 -Watched 5 “Magical Index” + 9 “Railgun S” eps and multi-blogged

Non-Writing Items:
 -Tea with friend Sunday
 -Dinner with friends Monday
 -Medical appointment Wednesday


POSSIBLE NEXT ITEMS:
 -Medical appointment Wednesday
 -Canada Day something something?
 -Post recap about CanCon 2016 (from Sept)
 -Write a TANDQ article on Polling and Bias
 -Write a post about types of praise/encouragement
 -Organize all the paper clutter from school
 -Organize all the electronic clutter from school
 -Weed through/organize emails
 -Do another Parody Math Video
 -French Citizenship project
 -Actually market some of my creative stuff
 -Binging Anime (Magical Index)
 -Binging Anime (RWBY borrowed from Scott)
 -Read some of the books sitting at my desk

Signed back up for yoga. Let’s face it, I’m not working on my core otherwise.
Previous INDEX Next

Friday, 23 June 2017

MT Series Scan: Raildex Sisters

I am a SLOW binge-watcher (and reader). Two hours is about my limit, after which I need processing time. At the same time, I enjoy watching online reviewers, and reactions to things that I’ve previously watched, so why not take the time during a slow binge to chronicle my own reactions and speculations?

Today we’re looking at A Certain Scientific Railgun S (Disc 3) with A Certain Magical Index (Discs 2 & 3). I’m watching this universe chronologically, because I can. Previously, we’ve been heading towards this Mikoto/Accelerator/Toma showdown, the climax of the "Sisters" arc.

I’m resuming here with Railgun first, since I feel that, as it was released later, it is thus the “true” chronology (in revisionist history fashion). Also, the Kuroko scene in the ep is needed to catch us back up to “Index”. Then, we’ll bounce back and forth. All my predictions have tended to be wrong lately, so there’s not much more to say.


*Railgun S Disc 3*


14 The Promise


Stream of Consciousness:
-Kuroko wants to act, also said she’d wait. I guess that’s a good reason for being on Mikoto’s bed. She gets video feed this time? They used similar voices in “Index”. OP. LOTS of Kuroko headspace here to justify the continuity, though it’s not a hard sell for me. She NAMES him this time.
-Hentai talk with flutes and bicycles is the same. Her being conflicted about knowing feels new. Faking Mikoto in the bed IS new! They leave to track down noise, not to dinner. Toma has info here for Clone 10030 and on? Weird. So he COULD still think he’s being played, but now has a time frame (20:30). Yeah, the airship flashback shows weather here, not the companies, good point. NOW we’re caught up to "Index".
-Mikoto on a bridge. He’s found her. Defensiveness. Calls him a detective (very “Index”) while only THINKING how he wouldn’t approve since she volunteered her DNA (very “Railgun”). (So, I presume in “Index” he convinces her what she’s doing is wrong, while in “Railgun” we’ll see he convinces her that he can be trusted?) Yeah, who are you, dude, learning all this in one day, some Gary Stu? ;) She tells all.
-“Can you beat him”? Predicted dead in 185 moves. She agrees. But OH so THAT’S her plan, to die sooner than predicted and cast everything into doubt? (As there’s no “Tree” to recalculate?) Oh golly. Now she’s explaining what I just worked out... oh, Toma knows there’s no “Tree” too huh?? Cat runs off. Intense music. She’s determined. He won’t fight. (I feel like the “tells all” and “185 moves” was eliminated from “Index”, putting us here with them fighting.) She HIT him this time. Wow, surprised he allowed that, but makes sense. One life to spare 10,000 daaaaamn. In theory she could jump over him. Gah, a blast? 
-Meow. Mikoto stayed with him, that’s nice, I thought she’d leave. (She still might, this could be “Railgun only”.) NOW he tells her about his Imagine Breaker. Interesting point, about Accelerator being ranked #1 for the experiment to work. So he’ll stand in for her? Oh, offers to work together over the ED. And he runs off first. New ED, just them. NEXT: The big fight.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Makes a LOT of sense not to have their talk be at a critical episode or climax for the “Railgun S” series, what with Mikoto (our protagonist) doing a hand off. This is actually a really interesting crossroads. I didn’t realize the battle wouldn’t start here. It must last a full episode in “Railgun”, but only a half episode in “Index” (where everything is compressed)? So, do I jump to “Index” to confirm my above thoughts, which would also show the battle in its original form? Or stick with “Railgun”, to see what Mikoto might be doing behind the scenes of the “Index” battle? Eh, let’s have the epic revision second this time; this post will be spastically jumping back and forth later too.

 Regarding how the fight will go... I’m not sure how the nullification will work on Accelerator’s vectors (Toma will have to touch Accel to negate it?). But oh, OHHH, Kuroko’s teleport didn’t work on him. So the “vectors” thing likely won’t work either. Toma simply has to get close enough to Accelerator to pound on him, and the guy will feel pain for possibly the first time in his life. He may give in then, but can he be trusted? Doubt it. I suppose there’s also the off chance Accel retreats to prolong things into the subsequent arc.


*Magical Index Disc 2*


12 Level Six


Stream of Consciousness:
-Oh NO, back to the beef brigade. ESP is about Schrodinger? I like how Aisa’s just eating the beef, like whatever. Puns are good. Believing in something so much it becomes reality? I thought that was the previous arc. (Well, that wasn’t a reality only for Izzard.) Why did we care about that scene?
-Mikoto bridge, thinks back not to her mom, but to “Railgun” Ep 2, with more scientists and d’awww music. They kept “help me”. Toma reads the whole report here (as we don’t have 12 prior eps of info). Same exchange, with no Mikoto head voice. Now asks about laboratories. She shut them down. New illegal cloning mention. Mikoto explains about governing conspiracy.
-She hopes Accelerator will disappear this time? Toma’s logic power (seriously, he IS good at that) points out she would have tried that plan earlier if she could. She evades the friends question. Feels worthless? She brings up the 185 moves this time. So THAT plan is still active. As is the “Tree” issue. (I was wrong again.)
-“You want to die.” “Yeah.” That’s more blunt. Mikoto is calmer this time. Shifting more to angry than desperate. He pockets the papers this time, they’re not burned. His arms are outstretched, not held up. (Y’know, this is going longer than I thought. Maybe we’ll be mid-battle when the ep ends.)
-Warning shot. And he’s down. She realizes about his hand? He doesn’t have his better idea this time. “Happy world” lines again. She blasts him AGAIN in this continuity. Accused of holding back? Zapper zaps a third time. Then holds the cat?? MMmkay. She doesn’t hold Toma in her lap this time, she moves BACK. And that’s it, huh? Oh, no, also a glittery bridge, and him thinking of his other new option. NEXT: Accelerator starts fighting a clone (it’s not even them??).

Thoughts and Theories:
 I have no idea if you’re entertained by my constant fails here. What with thinking the Aisa arc in “Index” would be longer, and yet this one would be two related arcs of equal length. Nope. Six ep arc. OKAY, so the battle with Accelerator will continue for two more complete episodes, with still other things happening in the background in the middle of it. (Because we gotta see some Index and Kuroko, eyeroll.) There’s my new prediction! For what it’s worth.
 I already speculated on the coming battle above. Might as well switch back to Railgun for it. I wonder, how can you make a battle interesting for your protagonist, when they’re not actually the protagonist of the battle?


*Railgun S Disc 3*


15 Kamijo Toma


Stream of Consciousness:
-Toma’s bad luck. Jolted or spooked? His phone’s wrong, natch. Accelerator mentions giving the “spoiler” of his power, heh. Oooh, called him a third-string. OP.
-Damn, nice catch Toma. Clone logic. But there’s only one of YOU. Accelerator’s got the windup doll thing in his head. Yeah, he can affect ground particles; this is a problem if Toma can’t get his hand in there and touch him. Rail beam attack. Mikoto at bridge thinks he can do it, now holds the cat... the SAME cat from first Clone contact?? Can’t tell cats apart, that’s a NICE parallel. She’s worked through her feelings.
-Ahh, Accel was testing him for an esper power. Doesn’t like that Toma’s cocky without one. Flour? Dust explosion? Ohhhh well then. I suppose oxygen deprivation is the only thing that might work, huh? Mikoto tracks the explosion, leaves the cat behind (good, I was like, why bring the cat even that far?). Oooh, his ‘reflection’ doesn’t work as well against non-espers? And now, overconfidence hands.
-Hahahaha, “why am I on the ground”. As I thought, he hasn’t felt pain. He thinks maybe he focussed too much on his palms, error. Right hand man. BAM. Heh, “and he’s on the offensive”. Hand-to-hand. A second hit. Ooop, Accelerator’s figured it out. But Toma can still target, daaamn. Accelerator never saw the clones as human, right. Wants Toma to shut up. Summoning wind. Ohhh, he’s lost it.
-OUCH. Accel thinks he can destroy the world, yeah, he’s a megalomaniac. Wants Toma to stay alive to watch this excuse! And Mikoto jumps in. Toma says don’t. She’ll trade her life for his. Wind compression makes plasma?? His “new power”. She can do something - with her Sisters? Oh, sweet. Something only you can do. The music sells this. The Clone’s awake.
-Accelerator’s plasma is diffusing. He wasn’t close enough to Level 6? No, it’s the wind turbines, because Misakas, ooooh! Mikoto will make an opening. Misaka says she will. Mikoto says it’s the big sister job, awwww. The Misaka Net in action, hahaha. Toma’s still kind of conscious. (He’ll save Mikoto as she saves the clones?) Oh, back to the first ED. (With all the wind turbines, niiiiice foreshadow.) NEXT: Accelerator has one more trick.

Thoughts and Theories:
 I’m actually digging the revisionist history thing. It’s probably the writer/editor in me. So what happened in the “original” history of “Index”? Guessing we won’t get the Mikoto asides (or Accelerator thoughts) as we flip back, that screen time will be filled with Index or something instead. We’ll also get Toma thoughts to plug the gaps, and a more first hand account of the dust explosion, plus him in the tornado. (Oh yeah, and Accel started by fighting a clone, more time gone.) Prediction made! *WOW*, seeing now Episodes 13 for both DVDs are called “Accelerator”. That HAD to be intentional.


*Magical Index Disc 3*


13 Accelerator


Stream of Consciousness:
-This is more than Toma’s usual quickie recap visually (but less narratively). OP. MisakaClone approaches battle. Odd X/Y coordinates. Thinks of Toma, she’s not sure why. (Cuz protagonist?)
-Oh, now Komoe is talking poltergeisting (from “Railgun Season One”) sure. What?! THIS IS THE DUMBEST SCENE. Seriously, backwashing fan service? (I guess it’s good to get this out of the way, not to interrupt the battle, but still.) NO, NO TEACHER. I don’t care if you’re 40 and look 10, that face makes it more wrong. Um, Toma is God sent, being beyond esper powers?! Sure. Oh thank God we’re done with towel girls.
-NOW the bit where he’s in Mikoto’s lap, with the heart stop conversation (this "original" history had extra zaps). Toma’s clever plan, Accelerator is weak. Mikoto admits to facing off with Accel once (so nice continuity throwback caught by “Railgun”). She explains about his ability. (And he didn’t introduce himself until after they fought, so plausible.) Toma doesn’t know where Accelerator IS in this continuity??
-Heh, password check on Accel. Accelerator talks about “throwing her life away” in this continuity. So he DOES consider her life (negating “Railgun”), even as he implies he cares (supporting empathy in a new way). He's still a megalomaniac. Hah, Misaka tosses back the reason Accelerator initially dismissed the project in “Railgun”, cute. He feels he’s not taken seriously? Now he calls her a “factory reject”, that’s more in line. Toma’s running while Mikoto’s on the bridge.
-Ah, he told her not to follow, to not mess up the Level 0 vs 5 thing. Yet she follows him EARLIER this time, interesting. (It’s like how Toma was early into the alley.) Toma’s not dealing with his phone time in this version. Misaka mentions no wind? Oh, she’s turning oxygen into ozone, that’s different! “Never a dull moment” is rather a change for Accelerator though, he’s usually bored. Knockdown. We’re synching up to “Railgun” (start of prior ep only!). Accel REACTS to “third string” in this continuity.
-Flashback on Toma, and Misaka gets to talk here. Kick incoming... or not? Toma gets his speech here, NOT after catching her? Guess so, now Toma’s knocked back, and the rails. This becomes a guy vs guy thing. Reaches out, hand slapped away, HAHAHAHA, I love that reaction. (This didn’t happen in “Railgun” though, Toma hadn’t got a touch in yet when we reached the flour.) Dust explosion. Maniacal laughter. NEXT: Toma can’t get near him, but Mikoto comes in.

Thoughts and Theories:
 We’ve fallen behind “Railgun” by half an episode. Largely due to a larger buildup to the meeting, and oh God, that baths scene. I like to think I can appreciate fan service, but here they’re all lolis, and the timing sucks. Explanations (for me) would work a little better AFTER the climactic battle, rather than interrupting the flow, crowbarring religion into a science arc. The time delay means it’s (AGAIN) tempting for me to stick with Index, except I bet the rest of the battle will only go half an episode now, then we switch back to Komoe And Friends. “Railgun”, which is already ahead, will also do half an episode, but more will actually happen in the aftermath. So we switch.

 I do wonder why they revise history in certain places. Like changing when conversations or events occurred (earlier, seemingly never happens later), or Accelerator kicking Misaka in “Railgun” but not here. I suppose the battle DOES work better when it’s retooled, but Railgun’s “improvements” are at war with my “continuity” self. I’d say “Index” isn’t as polished, but it’s unfair to pick on the original when I haven’t even read the manga. Oh, a stroke of nice continuity I just caught is how they were talking at the same bridge to start this episode as from “Index 1” though. On to the knockout blow.


*Railgun S Disc 3*


16 Sisterhood


Stream of Consciousness:
-Recap on windmills versus Accelerator. OP. Kitty exists. Accel tries to figure out Mikoto’s motivations. “These girls are my sisters.” Toma’s back up. Accelerator goes in for the kill, Mikoto fumbles a coin (yeah, THAT won’t be in Index), Toma’s hand is in the right place. Flashback - tanks and everything were after Accelerator when he was young?? He wants to be normal. Second hit. The windmills stop. (Done, halfway through, called the end for once.)
-Toma’s in the hospital again, room 1028. A Misaka’s there. Mikoto arrives when he’s asleep. (Way to revise hist-- oh he wakes up.) Cookies. Shocking him (literally). Misaka had told Toma about experiment suspension. Be glad clones exist? Imprinted “lab animals” as blank slate, now it's different. Clone chat... on swings. “Pushing the brainwashing so it starts young”, heh! Index in background. Haha, young due to Gekota. Aww, Misaka. “We are unemployed.” Huh. That is awkward. Still with the “On Hold” kitty?
-Saten and Uiharu scene. Why is Mikoto using their oven? Ohh, she took Toma’s remarks to heart. That’s one way of getting the friends back in. Heh, he’s already out on crutches. Index reference. Now we get tsundere here. She tries to say thank you, he sees ants. Toma, you’re an idiot. Learn her name, heh, aw, and he says it. Okay then. Kuroko is back, Mikoto will need an excuse for her nights out. Also, that face? Aw, and Mikoto got the metal pin this time. NEXT: Cooking, or maybe a restaurant.

Thoughts and Theories:
 I thought there would be actual bad news at the end, to launch the next (last?) arc here. That being something with Mikoto’s friends. But not yet. Moreover, since we have both Mugino and Misaki as set up to play a role over only 8 eps... hm, could they be in the same arc? But her friends are dealing with Misaki, while Mikoto takes on Mugino? Also, Shinobu’s fate is unknown too! As is Accelerator’s, in a sense!
 So much out there, and there isn’t enough data for me to predict. So, back to “Index” then, for a new look at all that. Is it possible the entire “plasma & wind” won’t even take place, given how Toma was kinda knocked out by the tornado initially??


*Magical Index Disc 3*


14 Weakest vs Strongest


Stream of Consciousness:
-Dust explosion rerun. Oxygen remarks, “Railgun” connection. Accel goes out with one hand, not both. First knockdown. No pain surprise. OHH, there’s a lot more hits here. Accelerator’s shifted to avoidance. “There’s no way you know how to fight” is a good point by Toma.
-Toma uses the rail to jump off at him; that’s vaguely familiar. Accelerator speaks in tongues now?? (Magic? No, he can’t, he’s esper.) Some sort of wind killshot? Air compression distracts him from firing again, I guess. Mikoto now has her railgun coin out. Toma says don’t do it, this was NOT in “Railgun”, he was flattened and bleeding before she came in. Now the plasma realization.
-Mikoto needs to manipulate the wind. (It’s implied that plasma isn’t a NEW thing for him here...) That CAT?! (That sure got revised, she left it BEHIND! Clone cat?) Mikoto going to Misaka is valid though. “Preserve his dream”, speech isn’t quite the same. Also Misaka isn’t bleeding so much. Cat, really? Mikoto standing to prevent Accelerator is valid. But he walks past her here, humph. (Nice heads image though.) Toma is really not bleeding much here. Now the punch. And Toma falls over. Lots less bandages in the hospital this time.
-His hand is on her... this isn’t funny. Ugh. Why is that cat there?! Experiment’s being cancelled, but Misaka’s body is on rapid growth, and will have a short life? Unless they’re adjusted, okay. Doc’s back, “fond of this room”, heh. Now Mikoto as he awakes. The homemade cookies comments. (So parallels, except she doesn’t totally shock him this time around.)
-Horror music for Index, well, that’s apt. Why is she biting him?! Ah, she was worried (and she’s toooo weird). She wants him to get help too. And a silent scene with Kuroko and Mikoto which must happen before the homemade cookies thing. NEXT: Oh no, a beach ep. With his parents?

Thoughts and Theories:
 Underwhelming. I see why it was massively jazzed up in “Railgun”... in fact, I think the biggest changes in the arc came from during this battle. Toma and Misaka were MUCH more beaten up in the revised “Railgun” - yet it’s not like “Index” had shied away from severing limbs before this. (So why downplay?) Here, Toma takes some hits, is in danger briefly from plasma (even as Accel holds back his shot), then he finishes the job. So the “plasma & wind” took place, it was the initial TORNADO that didn’t, I wouldn’t have called that. Mikoto’s coin drop from “Railgun” was moved to earlier (always earlier) and her attack was negated in favour of the wind power idea. 

 What probably helps “Railgun” to work better is that it does come across as more of a true partnership, whereas for “Index” it’s more the girls supporting their protagonist. (The new flashes of Accelerator backstory are nice too, and I liked “why am I on the ground”.) Also, less pointless loli fan service interjected. In fact, I feel like these few episodes would be a REALLY good way of showing an “early draft” versus “polished version”, towards an author/editor learning experience (I wonder how good they work stand-alone, or with manga context).

 All that said - it's probably better to see it the other way though? By watching “Railgun” first, I got “underwhelming” on this viewing - going the other way you get “amped up”. Still, I’m not upset I did see it this way, and maybe I’m proof of concept, or something. As to where we’re going, uggh, looks like swimsuit filler mixed in with Toma’s parents perhaps confusing Misaka for Index in terms of their son’s dating life. Backstory on his magic cancellation might be too much to hope for. I hope Kanzaki returns before the end.


***
That’s six eps and basically the To Aru “Sisters Arc”. I’ll be continuing on next post, watching mostly “Railgun S”, as there’s a number of episodes before the two series’ start synching back up towards the end... yeah, there’s GOT to be a bunch of Mikoto’s friends in the next few episodes. Both since they’ve been absent for a bit, and since we won’t get them as much at the end for "Index" (except via revision).

How did you see this arc? “Index” first? (“Index” only? I think you’re missing out.) Feel free to comment. Either way, thanks for reading!

Wednesday, 21 June 2017

MT Series Scan: Raildex S 2 & 2

I am a SLOW binge-watcher (and reader). Two hours is about my limit, after which I need processing time. At the same time, I enjoy watching online reviewers, and reactions to things that I’ve previously watched, so why not take the time during a slow binge to chronicle my own reactions and speculations?

Today we’re looking at A Certain Scientific Railgun S (Discs 2 & 3) with A Certain Magical Index (Disc 2). I’ve been watching this universe chronologically, because I can. Last time, I looked at Railgun S leading up to this point of the Sisters Arc, where both series overlap. Now we’re headed deep into it.

I’ve got clone sympathy, Accelerator is a megalomaniac, and Mugino/Meltdowner is, ehh, feeling like a distraction/warmup, really. Evil seems more united than good right now. Incidentally, I seem to call The Original “Mikoto” and her clones “Misaka”, for whatever reason. Onwards.


*Railgun S Disc 2*


10 Meltdowner


Stream of Consciousness:
-Ooh, Mikoto using the enemies tools? (Why blow up yourself what others can blow up for you?) OP. More mercenary scening. Heh, boardroom time. Yeah, knew that wouldn’t work. Haha, magnet bomb, clever. So many dolls?? Whoa! “Silicon Burn”, so she can magnify one strike to many with prisms, nice. Ohh, she’s bitter over being 4th, not 3rd. I didn’t clue in that it was a hierarchy. Deflection! So they can both do that. Down, but not out. These level 5s are big on property damage. OW.
-Can Mikoto escape? Maybe, but will be pursued. It's her turn for analysis, but Meltdowner can strategize too. HAhahaha, cell phone call now? This girl’s UltraWeird. Okay, Mugino needs to chill. (Why is there no Level 5 duelling ring?) OWW. Mikoto’s gambling on Frenda then. I don’t think Mugino’s dead. Heck yeah, she’s tough. Well, I’m glad that battle ended in this ep. Ooh, beating up scientist, so is Mugino going friend or foe? Uhh, foe.
-“S Processor” is the last place then, but they’ve already moved on. You’re going in NOW?! Level 5s is all crazy. Gone? Yeah, very unrealistic, but maybe take a break. Cue flashback to not being able to take a break. Except, no, optimism. And Saten flashback! Oh, theeeerrrre’s Toma. NEXT: Toma takes over?

Thoughts and Theories:
 Well, knowing that Accelerator and at least one Clone figure into “Index” (from that OP), I imagine “Meltdowner” and her “ITEM” group will be gone for a while, along with Shinobu. (If that’s not the case, I’ll be pleasantly surprised.) We’ll encounter Index next, and Mikoto will probably hit it off with her, because that would be bad luck for Toma. It will also be a pretty “light” episode after all this action, as Mikoto learns about his Imagine Breaker (directly or otherwise), and maybe Sorcery. We STILL won’t see much of the Railgun S cast (maybe Kuroko) until later in Ep 12, once Toma shuffles off to talk with Magnus or something. All at a guess.




11 The Vending Machine


Stream of Consciousness:
-Mikoto flashback to Season 1 (and something Toma likely doesn’t remember, this could be fun). Yup, memory was cleverly done in two continuities. Heh, that’s one way to bond. Oh nice, a scene of the other "Railgun" characters. Saten thinks... (Mikoto’s a clone?) Hahaha, no, has a boy. Just when Toma shows up, this could be more fun. Whoa, Uiharu, don’t think that. Kuroko, too much sugar. Way to transition her to Toma though.
-Mikoto, overkill. (Overkill, another level 5 trait?) Pffft, funny. Thank you for exposition, Mikoto. “What have I been doing”, heh Toma. Hi Kuroko, join the hijinks! Oh man. “Harmless monkey” heh, who is impressed by teleportation. Nice that Mikoto’s still okay with her roomie. Ohh, hello new clone. Who also narrates. They CAN track back to her too. Heh, also calling her Sissy. Aww, the truth comes crashing down. “A complex family”, sure Toma, or something.
-They’re up to 10020? Daaamn. You take on too much, Mikoto. Misaka also has cat memories, huh? Oh no. Now they’ll all know to leave her alone, oh sadness. Uhoh, Toma meets clone. Doctor Amai in the conspiracy? Is this “dividing up” a flashback or not? 183 facilities, oh daaamn. And as I thought, she’s been wiping out the weak ones. Senior Management must know, yes Mikoto. Fight the City?!
-Accelerator, you suck. I guess he’s always been on top. Tree Diagram Computer’s in on it? Good case for why bother, being the mightiest esper already. Decent counterargument, I guess. I doubt I’ll buy Accel being sympathetic. Mass clonage is against the law? Kuroko, your hair is weird. Oooh, Mikoto has to go public instead? THAT’S an interesting tack. From joking to serious, over the ED. So is she still Judgement? Awww, this is sad. She’ll have to go to Toma then? NEXT: Yeah, pretty much, goes to Toma. Plus big computer!

Thoughts and Theories:
 Mikoto can’t get her friends to help, awwww. I can’t believe I didn’t clue in to the Judgement issue. But it is in the Level 5 nature to break the law. Meaning that really didn’t go where I thought. Not even any Index yet.
 I suppose now Mikoto recruits Toma to get evidence of illegal clonage, but the Government closes in on them, and Accelerator can take on Toma without disrupting the experimenting, while Mikoto tries to free the Clone Net? Sheer speculation. We’ll build to that though, as it’s over 3 “Index” eps. I wonder how Sorcery fits in, or if it even does.


12 Tree Diagram


Stream of Consciousness:
-Aw, Mikoto’s Mom! Santa, heh. (“Mama” is my own issue.) Reality is indeed a problem. So this is a 24 hours thing? (Strap in.) OP. Wait, “Tree Diagram” is on Orihime I? (Didn’t Index blow that up or something?) Biribiri/“Zapper” name is back. “The machine sets the policy”. Can she take on a computer in orbit with her power? A clone’s back. HAHA, cat called “Zapper”. Misaka can’t explain simple things. Toma already has cat problems with Index, Misaka. Her defect? Oh, the magnetic field. What is it about cats? (The first clone had the cat in a tree, plus Toma has Sphinx.)
-10031 is showing signs of heartache? Ooooh. Not technically own voice, we hear differently in our heads. Ohh, Mikoto’s going into space. Or no, she needs to feed in false data, okay. (That won’t work.) She KNOWS it won’t work indefinitely, recalculations, clever. (I like when the anime anticipates me, “Railgun”s good at it.)
-Toma is the Kitty Whisperer or something. Call him “Dog”, haha, fun paradox. “Tokugawa Ieyasu” what? Bwahahaha, “Shroedinger”. The name “On Hold” isn’t terrible. OHHH. Clone met Index. OHHH, tie-in off screen. Toma, cat throwing’s a bit of a jerk move, but I don’t know what else would have worked.
-Accelerator is beating up bad guys but going too far. He can affect at a distance by touching the ground? Damn. Interesting point about the Misakas not complaining. So many clones are about at the same time? What do they sense in the Misaka Net? Oh, they both go, this is a double attack then.
-So, yeah Mikoto, it’s probably a trap. Or is it all automatic? Wow, yeah, dust on the console. What? It’s not processing requests?? Just making reports? The DISAPPEARANCE of the massive computer?! (So Index DID explode it!!) NEXT: Major clone fight, and Toma finds out.

Thoughts and Theories:
-Oh, oh, NICE, so it all ties back to “Index #6”. Toma freed Index, computer gone, and he doesn’t even remember. Scientists don’t get it, because magic. And there’s a massive conspiracy to hide it’s gone, which presumably will be busted open here because of a clone program “Tree” devised, which is going off the rails. (Of course, if Accel knows, he’ll just figure he can take Mikoto on, uhoh.) Nice interconnectedness. Damn, is this also why that scientist from “Railgun 1” was denied access?!

*looks stuff up* So Toma remembers Mikoto in “Railgun 13”, the swimsuit filler ep, meaning before the satellite’s off. But that’s after “Level Upper” has been around, so no, she was denied access to “Tree” because the government are just jerks. Fascinating world building though. I suppose it’s time to see Clone Misaka meet Index, as we begin our flip back and forth. I may stay with Index for a double episode to peek ahead this time, as Toma comes on board.


*Magical Index Disc 2*


10 Misaka Mikoto


Stream of Consciousness:
-Fun, it’s Accelerator, who we might “sympathize” with, until the clone backlash. Interesting that his power works at long range too. OP. (Hm, does Accel gain some Mikasa powers over time?) It’s Aug 20th? Wow, that is a time jump. Toma missed his first remedial classes. His last $20, old scene, new perspective!
-Mikoto’s more violent here initially, rather than admitting she once lost money too. Yes, shorts - oh no, Toma’s not going to use panties to identify the clones, is he?! Oh, wait, now their money talk, we just didn’t see the drinking bit in Railgun S, huh? So she was trying to get the money but got drinks instead.
-Airship talking about “Mizuho” discontinuing operations, a tie in? He thinks he beat her in *sports*, really? (Listen to her Level 5 talk, dude.) Girls manga reference? Kuroko talks “remedial lessons” as Mikoto’s nights out versus being with a boy. (So this is the pre-Saten continuity explanation.) Kuroko doesn’t take his hand while he sits, Toma stands. This explains a lot of the head-thinking in “Railgun”, the scene’s a lot shorter here. And Mikoto’s still taking CloneMisaka away, but there’s less anguish.
-Toma avoids stepping on the tennis ball, or no, bad luck. Now clone. Siiigh, striped panties. (Well, I called that. Weirdly I already adopted the name convention (Misaka/Mikoto) Toma does too.) She uses the goggles to be more like a level 5, huh? She’s definitely “off schedule” at this point. Stop looking at her panties. Okay, now a maid who has a brother, Tsuchimikado... Maika is a stepsister - what is a maid school?! Sooo random. Weird time to set up a new character. Oh, Index and Aisa. Didn’t expect the latter. Oh no, they’re alluding to a harem. Sphinx is back too. Mmm, savoury steamed cat.
-Mikasa brings logic to the insanity. Her electromagnetism helps, even low powered. And scene ends. (I wouldn’t say that was “meeting Index”, really.) Next day! (THE DAY.) Komoe and ESP cards in class - is he the only student? Oh no, his jerk friends too. Random Mikoto name drop! (Seriously Komoe, she can’t be the only one, why her name.) More airship plot: muscular dystrophy research centres closed in last two weeks. “Machine sets the policy” line again. She questions “Tree”’s existence outright here?
-Misaka goggles-off reference, though she is actually trying to feed the cat now? Seems no, but the cake IS out in this original version. Skips right to “Health Department” talk after a perspective cut, so one can presume the conversation was longer like in “Railgun S”. Talk of naming (with “Dog” and “Schrodinger”) now takes place in motion, not stopped. Talk of meeting Index now takes place stopped at store, not in motion. There’s definitely some revisionist history going on. Accelerator is there, she turns - there’s no other clone seen this time as he throws a clone (which is not her?) to the ground. NEXT: Learning about the killing of sisters, and Aisa goes to see Kuroko?

Thoughts and Theories:
 Yeah, all the heart has been bled out of this, in favour of entangling new characters (Misaka and MaikaMaid) to the existing (Index and Aisa). Honestly, I feel like “Railgun S” did a pretty good job with their “revisionist history” though, given what they had to work with (aka work around). Even so, it’s weird changing merely the timing of conversations, when they could have made it more seamless! (Like why not have them walking?)
 It now seems pretty apparent from this side that it’s TOMA who is going to approach MIKOTO, and not the other way around. (Mikoto really is bent on doing her lone wolf thing. Guess I could have guessed from "Railgun #12".) Not sure how Aisa fits in, I truly didn’t expect her to stick around. They would seem to have two episodes left in the arc to take down Accelerator and/or reveal the truth about Tree Diagram. Calling it now, no sorcery.


11 Sisters


Stream of Consciousness:
-Accelerator redirects everything, while questioning his own purpose. He reveals “vector transformation”, man, why tell them? (Is he wanting a challenge after 10,000 tries for her to figure it out? Why didn't they look it up?) It needs to touch his skin though. His default is reflect, nice. (Explains a lot.) He can reverse her own blood flow?! (So the "Railgun" version of the battle has one clone?) Toma investigates. Interesting camera angle. (So he’ll find Misaka dead, but then "she’ll" show up tomorrow?) Appropriate reaction - oh, he called ambulance, that makes it awkward. Unless cleanup was fast?
-They missed the shoe. It was fast. Cat radar? To new clone, who is cleaning up the old one. (So in “Railgun Revisions” it will be the same clone then.) Misaka now uses password, nice callback to earlier “Railgun”. New clone, same headspace. That’s creeeeepy having all of them. Serial number 10032, oh, so it IS her, no revisionist history for "Railgun" then (my bad).
-Toma’s getting a lot of information here for not having the password. He links it back to the original Mikoto, is she in on it, makes sense. Oh no, Komoe scene. And Aisa with a scary story why? Index with her food fetish. This scene isn’t funny. No one even wonders where Toma is? Even AISA’S tired of Index by now. How does that add anything?
-He goes to room 208, this late? (Wait, so he brings KUROKO on board?) They argue, but she likely wants to learn more through him, okay. (Why is Kuroko on Mikoto’s bed? Well, at least they’re lampshading it.) A hentai/“deviant”, oh boy. Pfffft, put your mouth on your chosen girl’s flute, really?? Interesting second hand kiss method. I didn’t realize/recall Kuroko was a year back! The head resident, heh heh. HAHA, her teleport doesn’t work on him, HAHAHA. But it’s dinner, so not breaking curfew yet.
-OH. OH, the paper Mikoto put there in that earlier episode about “Radio Noise”, OH sweet callback. Interesting that it now looks like she’s totally in on it, rather than totally trying to take them down. That’s clever. Propellers turning, electromagnetism, that also comes back (or rather, pitches forward) into a previous “Railgun” reference, nice, subtle. NEXT: Toma learns the truth of Mikoto’s crushing emotional weight. And an Index scene. Of course.

Thoughts and Theories:
 I was wrong again, kind of. He seeks Mikoto out, but doesn’t find her, she really is still doing her own investigation in parallel. I can’t even guess what that is in her episode now, since I can’t see them cramming Tree Diagram exposition into this “Index” arc. (I CAN guess that Toma will end up with a clone, because of how they’re setting up this harem thing. Sigh.)
 So a team-up against Accelerator won’t be coordinated in advance at all. This also seems to be an Index-free arc (mostly), which was a good plan, to focus on the Science and Espers. Guess we’ll look at Mikoto’s side now then. Oh wait, her ep is called “Accelerator”, so she’ll fight him alone first?


*Railgun S Disc 3*


13 Accelerator


Stream of Consciousness:
-Back to Clone 10031. THIS time, I know how she’ll die in advance. (Can “Railgun” keep old scenes interesting? The way "Index" kinda didn't?) OP. How “Tree” was brought down isn’t key, Mikoto, it’s true. This time “On Hold” kitty isn’t by the signpost. Toma sees a hole, not her shoe.
-Mikoto trips all the alarms. What’s her goal? Hm, how does Accelerator’s vector thing work by him stomping on the ground? That’s not skin. Oh, NOW her shoe; Toma left early (“revisionist history”) she's still alive. I guess the venue flashing back and forth is to keep the old “Index” stuff interesting, somehow? Toma even hears the gunfire, that’s not in the old script. Accel still questions his purpose though. Oh, there’s a camera now? (Will Mikoto see footage?) Oh, I get it, this is one of the 183 sites she’s messing up. Yeah, she sees the feed. Toma, you are early as heck in arriving. Mikoto you are broken as heck.
-Accel heads to the holodeck? Oh, no, it’s a flashback. He didn’t know she wasn’t a “perfect” clone. He didn’t plan to kill her, ohhh, that’s interesting. He didn’t even INTEND to. They’re BOTH likely numb to death now, that’s extra freaky. And that scientist calling the Misakas dolls doesn’t help!
-Toma’s ambulance scene now. Security cameras are now in on conspiracy, to show the scope. Hmm, MisakaClone came to him this time, he didn’t run and stumble on her with the kitty. Password again. Scene feels less creepy this time, more matter-of-fact (so "Index" had that going for it). Same questioning. I feel like we won’t get the full Kuroko dorms scene, just a mention of it.
-Mikoto can what? Offer her own death once, to speed the process along?? Boy, these "Railgun" eps really DO go slower than “Index”. (Ratio 2:1?) With this end, I might have thought he’d meet Mikoto by ringing her room. NEXT: The scene with Kuroko DOES occur, Mikoto goes to sacrifice herself, and Toma intervenes with an alternative.

Thoughts and Theories:
 I kind of want all the clones to gang up on Accel at once. Maybe they’ll do that later. (Also, don’t tell Kuroko to teach them all about love, that would end badly.) So, this episode was basically “let’s get Toma up to speed on events”, except he’s not the main character in “Railgun” so, uhhh, they added in Mikoto does stuff and Accelerator gets backstory. (I suppose we also learn his ability here.)
 I see I’ve been very consistently WRONG in all my predictions. Yet that's not upsetting me, I’m actually rather fascinated. This arc does stand out from the continuities in both series'. So “Index” only has one episode to solve this now, and even if there’s fallout in the arc after, for "Railgun" that must bring the Meltdowner woman and ITEM back in - plus the Misaki blonde from the very start. All I can think plot-wise is there’s a bluff based on “Tree” calculations, and Toma negotiating some cease fire, because hand?



***
That’s another six episodes. Incidentally, Railgun S Disc 3 which was just started here, I only got for my birthday this year (while Discs 1&2 were from the HMV Closing Down Clearout under a couple months prior)... so in retrospect, I suppose it’s good I didn’t watch “Index” earlier. I'm finding “Railgun” is the more emotionally powerful one. "Index" prefers mystery, which of course doesn't work for a rerun. It’s interesting to see the two perspectives.

Would you agree? Feel free to comment something. Meanwhile, let’s move on and see how this part of the plot wraps up.