Monday, 19 June 2017

MT Series Scan: Scientific Railgun S 1.5

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 1 & 2). I jumped over here from “Magical Index”, continuing in continuity to that universe. Deciding I was more invested in the female characters, and as such, wanted to see the story from their point of view before Toma’s. But we have a ways to go before “Index” catches up, as they're in a time skip. We're three episodes into "Railgun S", and I still feel like the Mikotos will meet soon.

*Railgun S Disc 1*

04 Sisters

Stream of Consciousness:
-Flashback. “I did know about it” but hey, the audience didn’t, so exposition. OP. Okay, yeah, something IS wrong. I don’t think she’s a fake Mikoto though. Oh my, no. Some California island trip? Oh no, a swimsuit ep? (I just feel it’s too early for filler.) Saten, the urban legend hunter. Rice cooker bargaining? Haru’ue fan service. A Saten clone, huh? Now a sad clone flashback? Oh, no, mental age issue, good point.
-Free time with a maid (the one from the Index OP?). And young kid character recall from the first “Railgun” series. Nao has some electrics. Ah yes, the Level Upper network. Misaka 9982 is in a Misaka Net? She has knowledge but no emotions. Meanwhile, is Misaka Present going to lose all her money here? No, also at the train station. Oh, there you go, collector’s fever. (Yessss I understand that.)
-She saw something? Or sensed? Her own power, hm. “Older Sister” parallel to these events, cute. And there we go. In the end, this ep was filler backstory. EXCEPT that dark bit at the real end GYYAAH. NEXT: Identity Crisis and evil whitehair guy.

Thoughts and Theories:
 What do you do with a clone who has no emotions? I wonder if the sensing goes both ways, and they can pick up on her. Plotwise, I feel like someone at the Project wanted this encounter to happen, like maybe with a personality the clone can get past Level 3 or whatever. Except that busts my theory that CloneMisaka is with Shinobu, and not part of the Radio Project any more. We’ll see.

05 Project Level 6 Shift

Stream of Consciousness:
-Meow? Wonderfully unexpected. Misaka9982 is a narrator. Oh, that’s a difference, panties. Kitty bonding! Password confirmation, huh? Revealing your plan to her seems an odd choice, Mikoto. (Haha, a plot to replace the original, that didn’t even occur to me, weird.) Random ice cream! That deflected the sisters thing. This narrating Misaka9982 is actually pretty funny. Pfffft ha haha, bad when your clone shoots you down. Aw, a present. Clone has... a cello?
-Back to the others. Oh, or not. Mikoto has a good memory for passwords! Security Rank A then. Ah, that guy. Shifting an esper to Level 6 with clones?? Not a cello, that’s a gun. Only one can reach Level 6? In 250 years? Weird battle simulation here. GYAH! He kills Misaka 128 times and elevates?! Oh no, no, no. Dude can even deflect bullets? 20,000 sisters?! Yeah, that’s crazy. Crazy. This level 5 guy is a JERK. I really don’t know if she’ll find that clone in time. Ooh, Clone does have a nice analysis. Wow. That's... hideous. Though arms in this world can be reattached, so legs too maybe? He’s tough. Oh my God, he just. Yeah, that's... that's... that’s a new ED. NEXT: He thinks she’s a copy, oh crud.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Oh crud, oh hell, oh hell no. Props, massive props, setting the clone up as a sympathetic character that way in a single episode. Like, you can actually off your main character multiple times now, but please don’t. I can’t even here. That got real, really fast. Poor Mya. I guess the only Level 5 who’d be willing to go along with this scheme is one who’s a bit psychopathic??
 So, Mikoto will lose this round, and all I can think is someone calls Level5Guy off, because he doesn’t care if she’s the original. But maybe she’ll get information about whatever his power is here. Then, tomorrow, I’m not sure, trying to free the rest of the clones? Before he kills again? Also, if this is experiment 9,000 or something (he's finally moving outside, for the challenge?) there must be more hidden records to dig up.

06 I... Can See All Of You

Stream of Consciousness:
-Yeah, that would freak me out too. Hey, you think she might be the Original? He’s just a megalomaniac then. Okay, soooo this guy has a boomerang power? Yeah, battling him would be a problem. OH, uh, there’s... a lot of Clones. Mikoto knows him then; Accelerator, who controls vectors. Oh, that’s cold, putting a price on herselves. Now the others are searching for Mikoto. That’s a hell of a nightmare. O.o
-Shinobu’s back. Ahhh, nice, a right and wrong argument, I like these. Except I think Accelerator’s one of the people with a screw loose. Previous Ep Title Drop! She was there for 8900 tests, and they all build the Network? Gyuh. So they remember dying?? I can see why emotions might be a problem. Aww, Mikoto hears her friends worry. I like how they’re all “what the heck?” in the diner except for Haru’ue who’s eating. Saten changes the subject, but is supportive. I like Saten. ^.^ 20+ facilities is a problem. NEXT: Search for clues?

Thoughts and Theories:
 So the pieces are in place. Well played, considering this is logically a holding pattern created by the fact that "Index" came first. In a sense, all that’s happened is death of a clone, and the desire to find out more. When will Mikoto bring her friends in on it? That may take a couple eps. They’ll need a victory of some sort within the upcoming Disc 2, I think. Not overall. But maybe the small victory throws off a timetable, forcing a plan of months to be compressed to days? Speculation.

*Railgun S Disc 2*

07 I... I Want To Be Of Help To You

Stream of Consciousness:
-Fire at the labs. Coordinated attack, yeah, it’s because they’re on the grid. Took out 70%? I think that’s an overestimation. Aw, poor Kuroko. These manju buns are becoming a plot point? Makes sense that arson would come up with Judgement, interesting about no help. Saten! That wasn’t nice! Three sevens superstition. Saten, that  skirt lift would’ve been funnier if you didn’t say anything. Destruction of data! Wind turbines point to electromagnetic interference, interesting. Aw, Mikoto nightmares again.
-Children subplot! With parallels! (That’s the way to do filler, yup. Build character.) Oh, Saten. Poor Uiharu’s a little put upon by Kuroko too, for her accuracy. Will they fake a card? No, four leaf clover superstition. Butterfly symbolism! Heh, pointing out that Kuroko can’t do it all herself either. Giving Mikoto the clover? No, just good wishes then. The music helps set the ‘thank you’. She’s narrowed it down? NEXT: They’re ready for Mikoto's next attack.

Thoughts and Theories:
 Some calm before the storm is nice, and the secondary characters really did need more screen time. (Oh, Saten-san. I should hate you but I can’t.) Mikoto seems to be tiring, and they’ll be ready for her now. I wonder how effective she’s really been at stalling the project though? Maybe some of the labs she’s taken out were slackers anyway, and she’s strengthening/consolidating them.

08 Item

Stream of Consciousness:
-Crazy doll girl and friend? Is Mikoto going to be framed?? They’re talking about swimsuits?! “Hazy request” exposition woman (Mugino?) is herself hazy. “ITEM” is a strike team of women, who will be going against Mikoto, ooookay. This got WEIRD. I mean, I guess it makes sense that the Level 6 project would outsource, but still. OP.
-Okay, so it’ll be one on one to start then. Er, collateral damage much? Well, evil inside stuffed animals does harken back to those pop cans from Season One. Yeah, pre-set fuses. Mikoto has magnetism! And ceramic deflection, handy. Bye bye stairs? Hmmm. Equally matched?
-Nubotana Shinobu’s still fishing. (Her preferred drink may be her downfall?) How stunning. How are all those under Blondie’s skirt?! Yeah, she’s overconfident. “Ignis” gas, means she’s desperate, but still cocky. Ooh, Blondie is sneaky too. Shinobu also has a plan. Ohh, you said a trigger phrase there, bad move, Mikoto Smash. A spark will reveal the deception? Yup. Now Mikoto’s gotta be bluffing at least a bit. Numb tongue problems, ooh. Now the rest of the mercenaries. NEXT: Shinobu sacrifice?

Thoughts and Theories:
 Decent filler is decent, but we haven’t been given any reason to care about these new mercenary people, so it feels a bit like a stalling tactic. (Maybe it’s just a letdown after that Accelerator guy.) Based on the OP, it seems likely that Kuroko will show up to help deal with this Mugino woman’s energy blasting power. Helping to even the odds, though I think Mugino’s the only one with an actual power. I feel like her friends won’t do a lot for that reason. I suppose Shinobu will help - maybe releasing clones and transmitting information? Before dying by tea? I don’t know. I should just watch.
From a French Wiki, but there's lots of good imagery
of the Level 5s out there. (Some are only in the manga?)

09 AIM Stalker

Stream of Consciousness:
-“S Processor” what? Flashback? Flashback within the flashback?? And we’re back. Well, Blondie/Frenda has friends. Vaporized! So Mugino has glowing energy? Spiderman reference! The collateral damage here is going to be intense. That’s not candy. (Level upper substitute?) Memorized AIM diffusion field? Ooh, that power overuse might have saved her. 4th ranked Level 5 Meltdowner?! So they ARE a parallel to Mikoto and Kurako. (Meaning okay, crazy eye brunette has powers.) Ohh, Shinbou’s giving the Clones a chance to fight back, hmmm. It IS a bit ridiculous as plans go. Oh no, here it is. One of Mugino’s team stayed behind, daaamn.
-It’s fun how Shinobu puts in English from time to time. Clones have shortened life spans? Good call on punching the USB. Nice that it’s too late. Or not? Data’s there for the future though, I hope? Nice moves, but UltraTalk Girl must have an ace. Ah, armour. Meltdowner now has strategy, that’s a problem. Deflected! Yes, she’s a level 5 too, I’m guessing you figured it. So, she cares for her companions, but they’re not sure of that? Because it’s a pride thing, of course. NEXT: FaceOff.

Thoughts and Theories:
 This battle is going longer than I anticipated. Toma might actually show up, as implied in the OP. I hope it ends within an episode though, Mikoto’s got to realize she needs her own allies too. (Could she get Mugino to destroy the stuff she wants destroyed here?) Meanwhile, the mercenaries are being more developed, so I guess I care a bit more there, though they have no history.
 I wonder how many of the seven “level 5s” we’ll see, this makes four. (Mikoto, Misaki, Accelerator, now Mugino.) As to Shinobu, I think she’s out, but what she did should play a role later. Maybe when Accelerator’s back in the picture. Or after the "Index" stuff?

And that’s another six episodes, which marks a good stopping point, since (apparently) Episode 10 of RailgunS and Episode 10 of Index start sharing plot elements. I'm glad I watched this way, so I'm not anticipating what's going to happen. Still quite invested in this. Toma’s memory loss is sure to glitch into the plot somehow, until then, Mikoto all the way. (Also, Saten. Gosh darn it, Saten, why do I want more of you?)

Is this anything like you remember from seeing it? Does this make you at all interested in seeing it? Is my formatting terrible? For now, I'll keep putting this out there, thanks for reading.

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