A Certain Magical Index: The Movie – The Miracle of Endymion Review

It’s time to look at the Index film that came out a while ago. The series has definitely expanded quite a lot with three different shows coming out. Two of them already have 3 seasons which is quite impressive. While the series is mainly an Index film it does bring together the leads of all 3 titles. Unfortunately the film doesn’t really plan out many things for them to do and falters with some fanservice issues which limits how solid the title could ultimately be. It’s an interesting premise with a solid opening act, but it just couldn’t stick the landing.

The film starts off with Touma and Index meeting up with a singer named Arisa. She’s quickly become mega popular over her songs lately and even someone like Touma who doesn’t really listen to music much is a big fan of hers. The three of them get along well enough, but then Arisa is attacked by 3 mages working for Stiyl. Touma tries to figure out what is going on, but Stiyl gives no answers and the heroes are saved by the arrival of a mysterious group of robot riders led by Shoutaura. After everyone leaves with no explanation Touma invites Arisa to stay with him and Index for a while until they sort things out. Everyone is after Arisa and Touma aims to protect her for as long as he can.

Everyone going after the new film character isn’t really a new concept. It’s a convenient way to get everyone in on the action from the jump and works well enough. Arisa is also a likable character who just wants to spread the joy of music to everyone so I have no complaints with her. She also stays strong and sings her song for as long as possible even when the circumstances are getting quite dodgy for her. She never gives up and that’s good since not all of the characters here can say that. There are 2 other important new characters.

The first is Shoutaura who has a personal stake in this. She does not like miracles at all and brings this up quite a lot. Shou is a solid fighter and her group comes in handy on more than one occasion. For a while she was my favorite character but she cracks quite a bit by the end and makes more mistakes than I could allow. I understand her being generally upset and not liking the main characters but by the end she becomes totally crazy. She should have just stopped at trying to murder Ladylee for a while. At least that made sense. Her final target made 0 sense and destroyed her character.

Meanwhile Ladylee is the main villain. She is cursed with immortality and isn’t having any fun so she is trying to get Arisa to fulfill her plans. I don’t think her plan is all that good because there’s no reason why it should erase her immortality. I suppose she needs to try something but ultimately this is a long shot. At least in the meantime she built up a pretty solid reputation and succeeded in life. Even if things don’t pan out nobody should be any the wiser so in theory she can continue her existence.

So, why did the film’s plot not work out so well? Well, as I mentioned the beginning is pretty interesting. You have the magicians and science users all going after Arisa. There’s gotta be a good reason for this right? Well, it’s a bit underwhelming. Basically Arisa has the potential to become a very powerful Angel who could throw the world into chaos. That doesn’t seem like a good enough reason to be hunting her. If anything all this does is make it a whole lot easier for the villains to try to get a hold of her. It also makes Stiyl’s group impossible to root for because they are hunting an innocent girl with no proof that she is bad. If anything they know that she is a nice person in the present and don’t care.

I’ve never been a big fan of Stiyl so it’s not super surprising so much as it’s just disappointing on his part. Meanwhile Kaori also appears briefly and while she is more sympathetic to Arisa’s plot, she isn’t exactly trying to stop her group either. She gets a decent scene trying to stop some rockets but there is no reason why she couldn’t stay to help in the climax except that the film didn’t want her there. I’m also dubious that her slashes could not cut through the random mechs that the villain group was using.

Another problem here is that the film sets up a lot of big fights and character moments only for them not to happen. One case is Accelerator as we see him fairly early on in the film with Last Order, but then he does nothing until the very end. He at least gets a fight right? No, he just gets to slam a tower, but that’s it. There was no real point to his inclusion then but he deserved to do something since he’s such a big character. You can’t throw someone like that into the mix and then not use him. Last Order was fun as always though and did have a good line about why Accelerator should care.

Then you have Misaka who falls into the same boat. She appears early on with her friends and even escorts Arisa through the villain base. (Although they didn’t know it at the time.) After that she doesn’t do anything until the end of the film where she zaps some robots and breaks a tower. This is another case where the whole thing is a missed opportunity. Misaka has broken the law before and has experience being a vigilante. The film should have gone into that as it would have been a pretty interesting plot line. Have her finally get to work with Touma and pals. That would have been really cool instead of doing nothing.

The weirdest part is that Ladylee has two main henchmen who work for her. You’d think that each character would get one right? Well, one of them dies at the very end without being able to fight while the other one is busy dealing with Shou. Both of these characters got some nice build up so it was an odd way to end. At least the main robot got a few fight scenes before he got blown up so it felt like he had an important role. The others…not so much. It just made so much sense to have all of these characters get some action. This is probably the single biggest way in which the film limited its potential. The setup was perfect for a big 3 on 3 fight and it just didn’t happen.

Now, the film wasn’t devoid of fight scenes or anything like that. We got quite a few good ones with solid animation. Stiyl and friends vs Shou was solid as well as Shou’s fights against the robot. The movie’s animation was consistently very solid with the character designs looking good and the energy effects being on point. The soundtrack is also good with a lot of the classic tunes thrown in. Unfortunately my favorite theme from the show didn’t show up but you can’t win em all. That would have helped enhance any scene you throw it into though. We do get a few insert songs from Arisa though which are a lot of fun. Her songs were actually translated in the English version which is cool. Those scenes are definitely a lot of fun.

One area the film struggled with was the fanservice as mentioned earlier. Characters just randomly walk around with nothing on for no reason. Mainly Shou was guilty of this and after it happened multiple times you can tell the film was just being cheeky. It had to throw in random bath scenes and Touma walking in on people too so in general the film was squeezing in as much of this as possible. It’s not as if any of the scenes themselves are all that terrible, but they’re consistent which is still a big problem.

Accidents aside, Touma looked good here. The accidents here weren’t actually his fault. Sometimes they are, but in this film they weren’t so I don’t hold it against his character. He’s quite patient despite being put in a few tough situations like having to pay for large meals that Index likes to eat. You’d think Index would contribute once in a while, but she never seems to help out financially. Touma also does his best to help out during the fights and is in general a good lead. Index isn’t nearly as solid as she just tends to get in the way all of the time. She is certainly not quite as helpful or charismatic as someone like Misaka generally and Arisa looked better in this film.

Overall, A Certain Magical Index: The Movie is decent at best. You’ll get a fun enough story that feels like it could be a two part episode of the show. All of the characters show up and since the music is the same as well it easily fits in with the series. Unfortunately it would be adapting some of the weaker stories with a plot that isn’t particularly strong and more fanservice scenes than some of the episodes tend to have. If you’re a big fan of the series then I imagine you’ll want to check this film out. It still is pretty fun and you’ll be engaged while watching. The weaknesses of the film don’t become as glaringly apparent until you’re done with it. While watching you just keep seeing scenes where you’ll shake your head and think it should have gone another way but there’s always a chance it could change by the ending. Otherwise you really aren’t missing much and you can definitely just go ahead and watch Railgun S instead. That’s still the single best part of the Index series with Misaka showing why she is a one woman army.

Overall 5/10

A Certain Magical Index III Review

It’s time to look at the next season of Index and this one finally wraps up the original saga. We get a few different arcs here, but the big one is definitely World War III. Index is definitely a franchise that has gotten a lot of media over the years as the spinoff Railgun got 2 seasons, Accelerator is getting a show, and in general there have been a lot of novels and manga. It’s definitely a pretty fun series with a good plot even if it is held back quite a bit by the fanservice. That’s the case here as well as the first half of the season has quite a bit of this but then World War III gives us the best arc in the series. All in all, it’s a show worth checking out.

The first arc is about Touma heading over to France to recover the document of C. It’s a mass hypnosis document of sorts that has been used to turn everyone against Academy City. He’ll have to deal with Terra though, one of the 4 members of the Right Seat of God. Fortunately his old ally Itsuwa is here as well so together they’re able to fight a lot better than they could individually. They may also have more allies than they know.

There are a few mini arcs between the main ones with Accelerator and his group tracking down other nefarious groups. They seem to be trying to get other countries to fight against each other and to cause a divide in Academy City so they can’t let this happen. These arcs are usually only 2-3 episodes long, but they’re definitely quite solid. The whole vibe of the show feels so different here as it all takes place at night where the true Academy City shows its colors. Then you cut back to Touma and the happiness of the daytime. Academy City is definitely as shady as it gets.

Touma gets to fly to a few other countries to fight off the threats until we get to the big arc. The season ends with World War III. At last the tensions between the various countries have caused everyone to attack each other. At this point we’re following 3 different characters so there are a lot of plots to unpack here. While the 3 characters don’t all get to meet each other at the same time, each of them do meet the others individually. I suppose they’re probably saving a meeting of all 3 for the sequel show. Well, I’m not positive that Touma and Hamazura met here, but I think they did. Touma’s mission here is to take down Fiamma. Fiamma aims to crash a large meteor known as the Star of Bethlehem and basically wipe everyone out before saving the survivors with his power. Accelerator wants to find a cure for Last Order and also needs to stop a rampaging angel so Last Order will remain safe. Meanwhile Hamazura mainly wants to keep ITEM safe from the various government groups who are after them. They’ve all got different goals, but they end up at the same place.

One thing that’s always been very good about Index is the exposition. Exposition can be a mixed bag of course, but on the whole I tend to like it. Throwing info dumps around is a nice way to quickly expand the world. I know that for some it can just be rather boring, but I think that’s actually a rare case particularly if it’s about abstract concepts and lands as opposed to someone’s sob story. If it’s the latter then it’s gonna get pretty boring. Pretty much every character in Index goes on long winded rants about cosmic events, and various religious artifacts that have amassed a lot of power in a short amount of time. It’s cool to recognize the events that are being talked about even if they are not exactly accurate from real world events. They’ve gotta put that sci-fi spin on them after all.

Index has also gotten to the point where there are enough characters and plots for the series to really have fun mixing characters together. This is especially evident in one of the early mini arcs with Accelerator as you had 4-5 different factions running around. Even in the show various characters would start mixing up the groups. “You’re from ITEM!” “No, I’m from GUN.” “GUN is actually FORM” and stuff like that. It’s convoluted, but the more convoluted the better. It’s also pretty good for replay value. This is Index at its best, just throwing more and more info at you even during the battles.

Index definitely has its share of fun battles as well. For the most part Acelerator tends to have the best fight scenes although my overall favorite fight in the season was Acqua vs everyone. He was fighting off a whole army, Kanzaki, Touma, Itsuki, and a few others. That was just really impressive. The show does have a lot of plot hax with the fights though and probably has some of the more inconsistent power levels that I’ve seen. This is because Touma is the main character and that’s something that has always been a little dicey. Keep in mind that he is basically just a normal kid whose right hand can nullify all magic. That’s definitely very handy of course, but it doesn’t help against villains who have super speed and crazy attacks.

As a result his final fight in the series doesn’t really make any sense. Especially since the show went out of its way to stack the deck against him. Touma is standing on a pillar and there is nowhere to run or dodge to. His only real option is to fall to his doom and that’s not really much of a choice if we’re being honest here. Somehow during the fight he always lands on the same pillar though and Fiamma never thinks to just cut the pillar beneath him. There are hundreds of ways that should have been enough to beat Touma but it never happens. This is never really an issue with the other fighters as they all have super powers. Touma is really just the one who throws in the plot hax. I do think Acqua’s rival got a little nerfed by the end but that’s more debatable.

The animation may not be quite as impressive as Railgun or the earlier Index seasons, but it still has its moments. The company has been having quite a bit of trouble lately, but I’m sure they did their best. The fights that count still look really good and the openings look solid. In particular the final opening of the season is excellent and the best opening in the series. The animation style also does make Touma look a lot older. Not sure if it’s an intentional effect of the animation, but it does work pretty well since Touma acts a lot more mature than he used to be. He’s more of a hero here. In general the season also has a much darker look than the first two which makes sense since I’d call this the darkest season. As for the soundtrack, it’s pretty solid as well. My favorite theme only shows up once, but the rest of the battle themes are still pretty solid. The show definitely delivers on this front as well.

Now lets talk about the characters. Touma is the lead as always and I dare say that this is his best appearance. He makes a lot of good speeches as always and does a better job of keeping himself out of sticky situations. The first half of the season is still tough for him, but for the most part he stays strong. He’s also very resolute in trying to save Index after she is put in a dicey spot by Fiamma. He’s willing to make the heroic sacrifice when need be and in general is definitely a solid hero here. He may be a bit naive like with shooting Fiamma to Earth first, if the guy was still evil then he could simply start his murder spree all over again. Touma always believes in the good in people though which I suppose isn’t a bad thing.

Index doesn’t get a whole lot to do here. For most of the season she is stuck at home and once she enters the fray she is quickly taken right back out. She’s definitely a character who ultimately wasn’t that important in the series and could have been swapped out. Considering that she has a bunch of knowledge stored inside of her it would have been nice to have seen her finally fight for real at some point. Meanwhile Mikoto unfortunately also shares the same fate of not being very important in this season. If anything you could say that her role here is basically filler. She did finally learn about Touma’s amnesia, but doesn’t actually do anything with that knowledge so it doesn’t feel like this matters. She even lets him go off to a fight when she very easily could have followed him to try and help. She just accepts his decision to try and do everything on his own. It’s a noble call on Touma’s part, but as a real friend Mikoto should have absolutely stepped in to help instead of simply leaving. You know that Touma would have never just walked away.

Accelerator gets a pretty big role here and he’s definitely still one of the best characters. Before this season he actually was #1 but someone finally passed him, you’ll see who that is soon. Accelerator definitely looked awesome regardless though. While he still doesn’t like to be called a hero, his days of being a villain are basically over. Aside from one outburst he has where the guy almost turns back into his old self, Accelerator does a lot of good in this season. He saves a lot of prisoners on multiple occasions and does all he can to save Last Order. His abilities still seem to not have an upper limit so as the series progresses I expect he’ll become more and more valuable to the heroes. He’s definitely nobody’s pawn though and even when he’s tied up the guy is calling the shots. All of his scenes in this season are dynamite and it’s worth mentioning that all of his mini arcs were quite good.

As with Index, Last Order doesn’t get a whole lot of screen time here. Still, she’s reasonable enough I suppose and does her best not to be a burden. She just wants to have a peaceful life even if the government refuse to let that happen. Misaka Worst is a minor villain who shows up at one point, but seems to have become a bit of a supporting character. She’s definitely pretty cool and I’d like to see her fight more in the future. An evil version of Misaka is definitely a good idea and while her abilities don’t seem all that impressive, she was fighting Accelerator. Otherwise I’m sure she’d be doing quite well.

Monaka is an old lady who knows quite a lot because she was in a position of power for a long time. She’s retired, but the villains haven’t so people are still out for her life. As it stands she has a very painful time in the series as she gets shot and then has to shed some skin in order to help the heroes infiltrate the villain base. She’s not my favorite character though and takes a long time to make a decision. Meanwhile I still don’t like Tsuchimikado who is always acting vague and keeping secrets from Touma. He should just spill the beans already and comes across as a faker. At the end of the day he’s a government lackey more than he is a friend so he’s not someone that Touma should trust. He also doesn’t really have much of a power set so he’s not that good in a fight.

Itsuwa is one of the nuns who aids Touma when possible. Her abilities aren’t all that great, but she can definitely still fight and does aid Touma as best she can against Terra. The heroes are outmatched there, but she never gives up. She is around for several of the other fights as well. Terra is one of the big 4. He’s openly corrupt and enjoys harming everyone he fights against. He even brings innocent civilians into the mix which is something Acqua wouldn’t tolerate. Terra’s ability to change whatever matter is coming against him to 0 is very handy. It has some obvious weaknesses of course, but in a one on one fight it is very hard to see him losing. He made for a pretty good villain.

Then we have Acqua who is the best villain as well as the best character in the series. The voice that was chosen for him is perfect and I always like villains who have an honor code. He’s definitely a solid fighter and does realize when he is on the wrong side. Acqua bows to no one and makes time to help everyone he can. He even jumps to obscure towns to help fight off the government when possible while everyone else was busy dealing with the large scale threats. Acque goes where he is needed and the guy has a lot of determination. He’s one of the more impressive characters in the series and in a fight he can take down just about anyone. The guy’s also really knowledgeable which isw helpful since in Index you need to be able to comprehend all of these abilities and traps very quickly.

Vento is another one of the four. She appeared in season 2 and doesn’t have much of a role here, but she does show up for a fight real quick. Her opponent quickly takes advantage of her big weakness though and that is the fact that she fights with a cross in her mouth. There’s a lot of ways that this can go wrong and it gets pretty violent for her. In general Vento just doesn’t seem as impressive as the other 3 although her large constructs are pretty handy for defense. I can’t say that she’s one of my favorite members of the four though.

Finally you’ve got Fiamma who probably gets the biggest role of the 4. He is debatably the main villain of the series after all. His right hand is similar to Touma’s except that it destroys anything that it touches rather than nullifying it. He makes for a good villain and the guy is definitely very confident. He makes a lot of plans and always has backup ideas as well so taking him out of the picture is not an easy task by any stretch of the imagination.

Hamazura is not quite as heroic as Touma but makes more of an effort than Accelerator. At the end of the day he’s fine with murdering people and doing what he has to in order to protect his comrades. He’s not particularly invested in the missions so much as he just wants to protect his friends. He’s a fun character to have around but he’s definitely a lot more iffy than the other characters. He tends to make some dicey comments and is usually guilty of getting himself in trouble. Nobody to blame but himself in these cases. I also think his decision to try and team up with Mugino at the end was super risky and realistically they all should have been blown up at that point.

Etzali is a pretty interesting character and his plot probably gets the least amount of screen time here. He has a backstory involving him being a part of a shady organization from a while ago. It seems like they got even worse after he left as now they force their memebers to turn into monsters while trying to wield super powers. He definitely got out at the right time. This part never really gets any closure and I wonder if it would probably get finished in the sequel series or something.

Awaki doesn’t do a whole lot here, but her teleporting is definitely as handy as ever. It’s a great ability to have and really lets you bypass a whole lot of security measures that you would have to deal with otherwise. She gets a pretty fun fight against one of the villains. Really there are a lot of extra villains I won’t be mentioning here because the season has a ton, but I’ll still be mentioning the big ones at least.

One of those is Kakine. He’s the second ranked Level 5 esper and his abilities are pretty nice. He’s able to keep up with Accelerator to an extent after all and that’s not something that just anyone could do. He’s a pretty solid villain and gives Accelerator a really good fight. He certainly did better than the other teleporting guy as there Accelerator was winning without his powers for the most part. Either way Accelerator wasn’t about to lose here though.

Takitsubo spends most of the season knocked out or injured. She’s not quite as good as Last Order or Index, but she isn’t bad. the girl means well even if she is a little out of her league here. With crazy strong individuals running all around the place her enhancement pills are good, but they just won’t cut it. Then you’ve got Mugino who used to be the determined leader of ITEM, but now she’s gone completely crazy. She seems to be losing her sense of self as she becomes more and more like a zombie. In her final form she is barely even alive anymore. It’s interesting seeing her as a total villain, but that’s why it is pretty hard to accept her turning at the end. She brutally took care of Frenda after all..how do you come back from that? Kinuhata doesn’t get nearly as much of a role as the others, but she’s definitely a fun villain. Her abilities are handy and in a 1 on 1 fight she’s probably the only one who could possibly hold her own against Mugino.

Well, Frenda also doesn’t get much of a role here. She meets her fate pretty early on. She’s always been a fun character so it was unfortunate to see this happen to her. She probably should have tried to escape or stayed strong earlier, but I guess she probably never suspected that things would escalate so quickly. Then you’ve got Lessar who joins the cast near the end. She seems pretty crazy and while the character had potential at first she goes off the deep end later on. Lessar becomes incredibly obsessed with Touma and basically loses all of her potential. A shame that her character arc had to go that way.

Meanwhile you’ve got Aleister who is still as mysterious as ever. He doesn’t do much here so that’ll probably be saved for the sequel. He’s still content to watch everything from his water jar. Then you’ve got his alien double running around who seems to be a 4D being who can barely even talk in a way that humans can comprehend him. It’s hard to say where they are going with him, but his plans seem super risky. He needs Touma alive and yet there are so many times where the hero nearly died. You’d think he would pay a little more attention in that case right? When the double does show up he tends to be pretty invincible so far. Only Accelerator likely has much of a chance against him unless they can get Touma to grab him. It’ll definitely be tough though.

Then you’ve got some of the season 1 cast running around. Kanzaki definitely isn’t as impressive as she used to be. She seems to lose every important fight that she gets into here. I suppose the power creep was just too intense. She’s still a good character, but one that desperately needs a power up. Hopefully she will get that soon and she also needs to stop letting Tsuchimikado troll her all the time. Then you’ve got Stiyl who I never found to be all that impressive anyway. He does a good job against Index…but it’s Index. He seems to be a little too obedient though. Kanzaki disobeys the group when she feels like it, but so far Stiyl hasn’t done that. You’d think that he would be ready to ditch the group since they were prepared to end Index. He’s friends with Index right? A threat like that should make him take notice.

Carissa is my favorite of the various princesses. While her methods may be a bit extreme, she is definitely looking out for Britain in a way that the others clearly aren’t. Her abilities are pretty impressive since she wields a sword that gives her an incredible amount of power. She has a lot of fire and determination. Carissa also does battle with some other princesses who look pretty cool but we never get to learn much about them. Then you’ve got the Knight Leader who was able to do battle with Acqua on even ground. After that fight he never looks quite as impressive again, but it was still a great role and he was one of the best villains here.

As mentioned the series’ only real weakness is the fanservice. It pretty much vanishes after the first half although then you’ve got Lessar trying to mess with Touma in World War III. Her scenes quickly become annoying. The season felt a little more violent than the last two, but it’s hard to say for sure since it’s been a while since I saw season 2. At the very least you can expect the characters to really go through the wringer here. Several characters are shot point blank and others take so many injuries that they basically bleed out. It’s definitely no Titan, but it does get a little intense here. The scene has some pretty shocking moments like when Mugino took out Frenda. You just wouldn’t have thought that something like this would happen so it changes the whole dynamic of the show up to that point.

While I wouldn’t go as far as calling the whole show very dark, there are moments where it gets pretty serious. Going back to the animation style, it works really well as a result because while the first two seasons were pretty optimistic, here everyone is quickly forced to adjust to the situation. It’s war now and the casualties start to build up. There are moments of levity here and there, but the season maintains a steady serious tone. By and large this season probably works as a good example of a “dark” show that isn’t super gritty. It’s always hard to maintain that balance and to this day Madoka Magica is the best example of it.

The pacing of the season is definitely very fast. The events really go by in a flash so you want to absorb everything you can right away. It does help the series always stay exciting though. With the exception of the early Touma episodes, there is always something happening around the corner. There are so many groups and villains that you’re always wondering who is going to show up next. It’s a really good thing if you ask me. There are some fights that I would have liked to have been a little longer like Touma vs Accelerator, but as it stands most of the fights seem to last for a good amount of time.

Overall, Index Season 3 was definitely a good way to wrap up the series. World War III definitely felt like the big climactic event that it was supposed to be. Everyone got to throw their hat in the ring and we got a lot of cool fights and plots going. The season does get hurt a bit by the first half which suffers from the usual issues, but it’s still a good season in the end. You’ll probably have a better time if you watch the other two seasons first since you’ll really be able to appreciate all of the storylines, but I think you’d be able to hang in there with this season if you follow all the exposition. Just try to keep all of the names straight.

Overall 6/10

Touma vs Asta

Suggested by Sonic It’s time for a battle of anti magic users. Asta has his twin swords which nullify all magic and can also repel it while Touma does this by hand. The main difference here though is that Touma’s only real power is in his hand so Asta can ditch his swords and just make this a hand to hand brawl. At that point there really isn’t anything that Touma can do to keep up. Asta is a whole lot stronger and faster not to mention the fact that he can also read ki. Asta wins.

A Certain Magical Index

The Index manga is now upon us. To an extent, you can certainly tell that it’s a bit of a cash in. As long as we can get some good fights that should be fine so long as the manga keeps it real. It’s off to an okayish start and the horror esque moment to end the volume was nice. We already had a fire monster fight so that’s a good lead off. The next volume will see the debut of a pretty powerful fighter. So long as the series doesn’t fall to any big negatives, the manga will be a good action title. I’ll review it once the series is over.

Overall 6/10

Saten Ruiko vs Touma

Touma is pretty tough for a level 0. His power is matched only by his ability to destroy all magic and science. Saten may have some decent hand to hand skills for when the going gets tough, but Touma is superior in this area. He cannot be defeated here and that means that Saten will have to settle for a loss. Touma wins.

A Certain Scientific Railgun S Review

The first Railgun show was pretty fun and one would likely expect the sequel to be even better. Luckily, this is the case with Railgun S and it amps up the stakes in every way. That can be a good thing for some and it may be too different for others. All I can say is that action fans will definitely approve! Time to see why Railgun S is so great!

The first Railgun show was very lighthearted and I’d call it a slice of life with some action. Railgun S has two arcs and the first one is complete action with some drama and emotional moments. It’s a lot darker than anything we saw in the first show and the violence is also heightened. The best part about this is the fact that most of the fanservice has been eliminated from the show, which is terrific! The second arc goes back to Railgun’s roots and the show becomes a lot happier once again. After the amazing first arc this may be a disappointment, but it’s still fun.

Before the first arc begins, we get a quick stand alone episode where Misaka gets to show off her abilities and she takes down some villains. After that, the arc quickly starts and it takes up most of the series. When Misaka was a little girl, some researchers took some of her DNA and they decided to illegally clone her. They want to create a Level 6 fighter that can surpass all others. They approach the world’s strongest Esper, Accelerator, who accepts their terms since he wants this power. He has to destroy 20000 clones of Misaka to unlock level 6. Accelerator isn’t fazed by this and the massacre begins. The clones are to fight him in one on one battles and they don’t mind the fact that they will be destroyed since it’s just what they do.

The real Misaka finds out about this and decides to stop Accelerator, but she has no chance in a physical fight. She will have to destroy all of the facilities in the city so that the researchers cannot continue their experiment. The problem is that these researchers have hired a group of powerful Espers to take Misaka down…and one of them is another Level 5! Misaka has never faced such a large scale fight before and (since her friends won’t help at all) she may need the help of Academy City’s strongest Level 0….Touma! This arc was awesome and I’ll continue to talk about it in the later parts of the review.

Arc 2 lowers the stakes so it’s more of a happy mystery, but things still get tense at times. Febri is a mysterious girl that the heroes find in the park one day. There’s something off about this occurrence and meanwhile, some scientists want to defeat the Espers. They’re mad because they are some of the smartest students around, but nobody wants to recognize their true greatness. To get back at them, these students are going to use their mecha army to wreck havok on the city and destroy everyone. Looks like a job for Misaka and pals!

It’s a little hard to try and make Arc 2 exciting because it really wasn’t. A lot of it didn’t make a whole lot of sense and it was hard to take the villains seriously after seeing someone as powerful as Accelerator. Arc 2 also didn’t contain as many fights as Arc 1 and none of them were quite as epic. Ah well…that’s why we have Arc 1!
For example, my favorite part of the series was the gauntlet against ITEM. It even surpasses the Accelerator climax because it’s 2-4 episodes of nonstop action and battling. (Technically Accelerator vs Touma is just one fight after all) The ITEM group really gave Misaka a challenge and it was awesome. It helps that I love the new villain group trope and I had been wanting to see another Level 5 do battle. We got to see Misaka’s determination in that battle as she fought well past her energy limit and she had to think of inventive ways to use her abilities so that she could walk out of there alive.

Misaka is just as likable as in the first show, but we get to see more of her abilities in this show. As I mentioned in my previous review, there wasn’t really anyone that could be a challenge for Misaka. Her electric abilities were too much for her opponents and until we saw the only two Espers in the world who could defeat her; that didn’t seem like it was going to change. Luckily, we got some great fights in Arc 1 so we got to see what Misaka could really do. She’s easily one of the strongest Electric users out there and she’s proven that she can hold her own show as well as Touma…maybe even better.

Touma continues to prove that he’s the perfect side character. As a protagonist he ranged from cool to downright awful. As a side character in Misaka’s show, he’s always awesome. I didn’t really think that he could look better in this show than in the last one, but I quickly changed this view. Touma got a pretty cool cliffhanger where he clenches his fist for no real reason, but things get epic once he joins the fray. He’s decided that he’s going to take down Accelerator so that he can save the clones (One of which became his friend) as well as Misaka. To do this, Touma is going to have to enter the ultimate fight. The Strongest Level 5 vs the Weakest guy in the world. If all characters were as cool as Touma, then the world of media would be much different.

Railgun S continues to have great characters as Accelerator is introduced. Misaka is a perfect main character; Touma is the perfect side character, and Accelerator is the perfect villain. It’s impossible to sympathize with him and you really can’t wait until he’s defeated. I actually became a pretty huge fan of him in Index and he’s my favorite character in the franchise, but for now we’ll have to settle for liking him as a villain. If I were just counting this show, he would be under Touma and Misaka. He’s an incredible villain, but you really can’t root for him while he’s destroying everybody. Accelerator succeeds as a villain because his abilities are very hard to overcome and he’s also very confident. Unlike other villains, Accelerator can back up his tough talk.

Frenda is one of the members of ITEM and she’s the first one to challenge Misaka. She’s actually pretty good at hand to hand fighting, but she specializes in medium to long distance attacks. She can plant her dolls at key areas and then set them to explode once the opponent gets near and triggers the trap. She’s essentially like Batman in the fact that prep time greatly helps her fighting capabilities. She’s one of the better members of the group even if her abilities can’t really stack up in a one on one fight.

Mugino is basically the leader of ITEM when they’re in the field. She is a level 5 and her ability allows her to shoot powerful lasers that can go right through steel walls. She can also use them defensively to protect her from all incoming attacks like Gaara’s Ultimate Defense. She’s definitely a powerful opponent although I’m sure that Misaka would be more than a match for her if they fought on equal terms. Mugino is a decent character, but her abilities are great so I’m glad to have her on the show. Hopefully she gets another fight at some point.
Kinuhata (Super strength) and Riko (Telepathy) don’t get to do a whole lot in the show so it’s harder to talk about them. Riko can sense where an opponent is by their AIM fields so she’s good to have in a group. Unfortunately, that also means that she wouldn’t do very well in a one on one fight. She’s a decent character, but her natural abilities just aren’t that great and she has to augment them artificially. I have a feeling that this won’t help her in the long run. Kinuhata is the most interesting member and she could present a challenge to some of the heroes. Her ability seems to make her body impervious to injury to the point where she can block bullets. It’s not absolute, but a stone wall defense like that is pretty great in a fight and she’s also very fast.

Shinobu is a researcher who was involved in the cloning operation that was taking place in Academy City. She didn’t mind them at first because she thought of the clones as inorganic. They weren’t really alive and they didn’t have emotions because they were linked through a network. Eventually, she realized that they were just as real as normal people and she made it her life’s goal to save them. Unfortunately, she is only a mere mortal and that’s not good in this show. She looks very bad in Arc 2 and her plans don’t really help in Arc 1 either. She has good intentions, but her methods are pretty ineffective and I really didn’t care for her. She just wasn’t that likable.

Kuroko doesn’t get a particularly large role in this show. She’s as unlikable as ever, but the show also gives her a subplot where she decides that she won’t try to find out what Misaka is up too. (Misaka is going around blowing up government facilities to stop the experiments) The show plays it off as a good thing and Kuroko gets to show Misaka that she trusts her judgment and everything. Misaka even indirectly asks Kuroko if she would try to stop her if Misaka did something to wreck the city. Kuroko said that she would and Misaka had to leave her out of her plans. (Although she already had been)

The problem is that Kuroko should have tried to find out what Misaka was up too. Misaka definitely could have used some backup in her fight against ITEM and having Kuroko along would have helped a lot. A true friend would have made sure that Misaka was okay. Especially after Misaka kept coming home with injuries and fatigue. This is just one of the many reasons as to why I don’t like Kuroko and it’ll be hard for her to bounce back from these moments.

Kongou gets a slightly larger role in this show than the last one. She still doesn’t get along with Kuroko that much, but she does get along with Misaka. Along the way, Kongou has pretty much joined the main characters as one of the mainstays for the battles. In Arc 2, she’s around for most of it and she joins in the help Febri. She also finally gets to use her abilities a lot and we see that she can make things launch. (If she hits a truck, then it will zoom forward with rocket power) She’s a decently likable character, but she would never become one of my favorites due to her personality. She’s a nice person, but she can’t show it since it would wreck her image. Ah well, at least she tries to help out.

Saten, Uiharu, Banri, and Harrue don’t really get to do much in this series. They’re around as supporting characters of course, but you likely won’t miss them as the episodes go by. If you liked them in the previous show, then you likely still will. If you didn’t like them before; I don’t see why you would change your mind here. Saten can still be inconsiderate of Uiharu and I can’t take her seriously. That’s part of why the climax in the second arc felt forced and there were a lot of moments that were cheesy. Things shouldn’t have turned out so well for the heroes once these 4 got involved. I’m not going to mention the villains from Arc 2 because they are barely characters. They’re just generic scientists who don’t realize that they are outclassed and they want to make other people as sad as them. (They also get an extremely cheesy moment in the last minutes of the final episode, which was pretty laughable)
While I did mention that Railgun S is a lot more violent than the original Railgun, it’s mainly due to a few select scenes. They all take place in the first arc and the second one really has little to no violence. Accelerator is able to blow people up by making contact with them and he does this to one person, but a security camera shields the viewer from seeing this. Someone’s leg is also taken in another scene and those are really the two big violent moments. The leg yank is easily the most disturbing scene since it’s pretty unexpected. This isn’t anything to turn you off from the show though because aside from those two episodes, the violence is minimal. The whole first arc is dark, but not necessarily violent. There is a lot of action so the heroes/villains get injured, but nothing really graphic aside from those moments.

Luckily, this also meant that there was no time for fanservice. The anime still manages to sneak some in once in a while, but it’s a dramatic step down from the first series. I’m glad that they did this and it makes the rest of the anime easier to appreciate. Fanservice sucks the life out of all anime and it forces you to drop some of the all stars like Gurren Lagann and Bleach down a few pegs. Hopefully the next show in the Railgun franchise can continue with this.

The soundtrack in Railgun S is excellent! I liked Railgun’s soundtrack, but Railgun S takes it to a whole new level. The ending theme when Misaka goes off to fight Accelerator in their first round was incredible and it felt like something that you would hear at the theater. The battle music was also a lot more intense and the overall soundtrack was phenomenal. The two openings were pretty fun, but opening 1 was definitely the best since it had a lot of action to go alongside the fun music. We even got some fake foreshadowing to trick the fans and I always like that because it gives us hypothetical battles. Railgun S definitely hit it out of the park with the music and the final episode gets some guest star music from the first show. That episode was filled with music that kept on playing right after that others.

Not to be outdone, the animation is also a few steps up from Railgun. I can now say that the animation looks pretty incredible. The character designs are effectively the same, but they’re more streamlined, which helps for the fights. Touma’s fight against Accelerator stands out as well as Misaka’s gauntlet against ITEM. Even scenes with less stakes like Misaka’s Railgun against the villains in the first episode looks really good with this animation. Great animation can definitely make a fun show even better.

One of the big questions that may be brought up is whether Railgun did better with the dark toned part of the franchise or if it should have stayed happy and chipper. I’ve never been a fan of everything being grim and that’s one of the enjoyable factors of the first Railgun. Every episode was pretty happy and there was really no dark moments in the show. We had some sad moments, but things tended to work out by the end. Still, that couldn’t last since part of the plot for this series was how Misaka would have to combat the darkness of Academy City. The first arc of Railgun S is dark, but it’s done in a pretty decent way. It’s not gritty for the sake of being gritty and there is still some hope for the heroes. (Although Misaka’s friends don’t help in this) This arc was the best in the franchise so Railgun S definitely succeeded with this huge tone shift. Now, if the whole show had been dark like that, it could have gotten a little dicey. It’s a lot harder to keep a show interesting and good with a dark tone. It’s easy to slip up at some point and just make things too dark with excessive violence or unnecessary sob stories as the series gets longer and longer. That’s why it’s best to just have an arc for it and then it can be a masterpiece like this one.

That’s why I’m glad that Railgun’s light moments stick around. Unfortunately, this also means that they try to play up the friendship angle and it doesn’t work in this case. Aside from Kuroko, Misaka’s main friends are all very weak and they shouldn’t be able to help out. Arc 2 tries to show how helpful they can be, but it was very cheesy. They decide to hold off thousands of robots along with the rest of the students, but they should have been mowed down. The robots were way too powerful for them and realistically there should have been heavy casualties. In that case, it was definitely all right for Misaka to proceed on her own. Every time she has to clue the rest of the characters in; Misaka has to slow down in her investigation. I’m not opposed to telling the other characters and I believe that Misaka should have told Kuroko back in arc 1. Of course, Kuroko may have told the police and that would have wrecked things so it was a gamble either way.

So far, it probably sounds like Arc 2 was downright awful, but it was still all right. There weren’t a whole lot of stakes, but that’s because it had a more personal feel. Mainly, one girl’s life was at stake, but that’s still enough to get Misaka and the gang involved. Eventually, the scope of the threat got larger, but the heroes were already set. I do like the concept of every Esper in the city joining forces to stop the villain, but it could have been executed in a cooler way. All of the insert songs give the scenes a sense of epicness, which helps to overshadow the inaccurate moments. I just don’t think that things would go so smoothly for the heroes. I also wasn’t a fan of the fact that Misaka needed some help against the army of robots since they didn’t seem so impressive.

The first Railgun show rekindled my interest in the franchise and this one rose it to new heights. Railgun S managed to surpass the two series from the main branch of Index and that’s pretty rare. Usually, spinoffs don’t end up beating the main thing. It’s a pretty good feat for Railgun S and it shows that spinoffs always have a shot. (Unlike the Rock Lee show) Railgun S defeats most of the anime that I’ve seen recently including Sword Art Online, Guilty Crown, Gurren Lagann, and Accel World among others, but it does get defeated by another anime that I’m currently watching. What is that anime? Well, you’re going to have to wait to find out. All I can say is that it’s one of the best anime of all time!
Overall, Railgun S is an incredible show. I’d easily say that it’s one of the better anime that I’ve seen. (I would have said one of the best, but that’s stretching it just a little bit since it loses to DBZ, multiple Digimon shows, Naruto (multiple shows), etc) The animation is top notch as well as the soundtrack and we have some really great characters to root for and against. I still can’t get over how epic and awesome Touma was in the climax of Arc 1 and Misaka is a character that everyone can look up too. She had to make the tough call to fight the whole city and she did everything that she could to save the clones. With characters as heroic as this, it’s hard to go back and watch something like Avengers Assemble! The show also expands the universe a little more while throwing in some more plot points for the future. (Academy City is still evil and another one of the Level 5s seems to have some beef with Misaka) I highly recommend this anime to all readers because it appeals to many different crowds. If you want a dark tale revolving around conspiracies and a lone hero against all odds; it’s time for Arc 1. If you want heartwarming tale about friendship, and second chances with some fun action scenes; then it’s time for Arc 2. Either way, it’s a win/win situation! I definitely can’t wait for the sequel to come.

Overall 8/10

A Certain Scientific Railgun Review

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After seeing the Index series, I suppose that it was only a matter of time until the spinoff would come up. Without Touma leading the charge and the whole magic side of the equation, could the show still manage to be exciting? Misaka may have been a good character in the main series, but some characters just don’t do well when it comes to their own series. (Rock Lee) I halfheartedly wondered about these things as the show began. Time to see if the series could hold its own!

Misaka Mikoto is the main character of this series and she’s completely different from Touma. Touma barely got by and he had to scramble to get enough money to buy his daily groceries. He’s also a little in the dark as far as the plots go and he just punches whoever gets in his way. Misaka is pretty wealthy and she lives at the most prestigious school in the city. Guards can be found just about everywhere and she experiences the light part of the city. (In this series anyway) Misaka was a cool supporting character in the original series, but I can safely say that she’s become a much better character through this one. Similar to how I became a big Hunter X Hunter fan after watching the anime for the first time as opposed to reading the manga; I dare say that watching this series has helped me gain respect for the Index franchise as a whole. In some ways it’s more fun than the main series, but we also get a lot of filler, which is never an amazing sign.

For those of you who haven’t watched the main series, I’ll just give some background. A Certain Scientific Railgun takes place in Academy City, where they believe that science can solve just about anything. Many of the students are Espers and they are ranked from Level 1 to Level 5. (There are only 5 Level 5s) They go to school and work at using their powers and it’s really fun to live in the city…so long as you have powers. There is also a magical side, but they are not allowed to enter the city and if they did…trouble would ensue. All right, time for the plot. (not that many episodes really contribute to the main plots)

Before the main plot starts, we get some stand alone episodes to introduce us to the characters and also to buy time. (AKA filler) Misaka and her “sister” Kuroko (Not related and are just friends, but Kuroko refers to Misaka as her sister) take down some bad guys and we realize that Misaka is a nice person. We also get introduced to Saten and Uiharu, who stay as main characters for the series. That’s basically episode 1 and then episode 2 is just about cleaning. The plot begins in the next episode (albeit, only in the final seconds) and there is a device that has been mass produced. It is known as the Level Upper and it can increase a person’s natural abilities, but to a dangerous extent. A level 1 can become a level 2, but after a few minutes or a few hours; the person is liable to go into an a coma and possibly not wake up again. Making things worse is the fact that one of Misaka’s friends, Saten, becomes tempted by this device. She’s a Level 0 so this device could finally help her out. The devices start popping up all around the city so it appears that there may be a coordinated group behind these actions. Misaka will have to go against Kuroko’s orders and join this case…but will she be able to win?

The first arc was mostly a lot of stand alone episodes that were joined together by the Level Upper device. It felt less like a full arc and more like episodes that were vaguely related. The plot thickened once the villain appeared and Saten got involved, but the beginning was pretty slow. The climax is pretty good because Misaka finally gets a big fight against Harumi. Harumi obtained many abilities so it was nice to see Misaka get a challenge. The actual final fight involved a giant monster like being so it wasn’t nearly as exciting. Misaka is a long range fighter so giant creatures that can barely move aren’t a great match for her.
The second arc starts after some filler episodes. We get a two episode mini arc that involves a gang. Those episodes actually weren’t that bad, but the plot hax was immense. We saw the debut of a power dampener device that allowed Misaka to be on the verge of losing to ordinary humans. I had to wince at this because there’s no way that this device could pull off such a feat. Kurozuma was one of the gang fighters and he was pretty cool. In some ways, he was like Yusuke, but not quite that cool. It was nice to see some hand to hand action for once.

The second arc really begins during the final episodes of the series. There have been poltergeist reports and it causes damage to large areas. Kuroko suspects that Uiharu’s new friend Haruue may be behind this, which causes a rift to form between them. Meanwhile, Misaka finds Harumi and realizes that a group of kids are still in a coma from experiments that were done a long time ago. That’s when a new character by the name of Therestina shows up in command of a large squadron of men and robots. They seem to be pretty sketchy. Could they have something to do with these poltergeist attacks? Misaka realizes this and it’s time to take Therestina down once and for all. Looks like it’s fighting time!

This arc wasn’t nearly as interesting as the first and everyone felt a lot weaker. It’s to be expected since the second half of an anime is usually not as good as the first half. The Capacity Down device was a big plot device since it could make Misaka powerless as any given time. Also, the city looked evil as per usual and Misaka should have done something about it. (She’ll get more involved in the next season) Uiharu got way too upset as Kuroko for suspecting her new friend and that was disappointing. It’s Kuroko’s job so it’s not like the suspicion was personal. The final episode still had some flashy fights and a good insert song to make the show end on a decently high note.

As stated earlier, Misaka is a great main character. Some may argue that she’s a little too good since she’s a great person who always wants to help out and she also happens to be the third strongest Level 5 in the city,(As well as the world) but that’s part of the reason why she’s so cool. It’s tough for the villains to give her a challenge because her abilities are seemingly invincible. That’s likely why the writers of the show created the Capacity down. Misaka gets her share of fights in this arc and she’s basically untouchable. Even in the final fights of the first arc, where Misaka is fighting something with the energies of hundreds of Espers and then takes on a woman with dozens of abilities; Misaka doesn’t really break a sweat. The monster doesn’t really get any hits and while Harumi does deal some damage, we find out that Misaka was holding back. Naturally, I expect the sequel to bring in some tougher enemies because Misaka definitely needs a challenge. I want an excuse to see her go all out and bring us some DBZ fight scenes! As it stands, her super attacks are fun to watch and they’re definitely powerful.
Touma is drastically improved from the main Index series and he is easily one of the best characters of the series. We get to see his heroics early on as he attempts a rescue even though there was a high risk of serious injury. The attempted rescue did not go as planned since he was dealing with the legendary Railgun, who did not need his help. Touma has several battles against Misaka and his abilities are definitely impressive. He always seems to have the upper hand despite being a Level 0. They never let the viewer know what his ability is, but you will understand part of it by the end. Could Touma be the strongest fighter in Academy City!? It is certainly possible when judging from this portion of the franchise. Its just hard not to root for Touma. He gets all of the best lines and he realizes that buying groceries can be a priority. Touma is also a nice guy and he doesn’t mind throwing a fight if it will make everyone happy. He always knows just when to appear and he even got a ticket to a very prestigious event at the end of the series. Touma is just an awesome character and he gets even cooler during the sequel show!

Kuroko is a character that never fails to disappoint me. She is one of the few level 4 fighters around and her teleportation ability is very lethal. Instead of becoming an awesome ally to root for, she ignores this and allows her obsession with Misaka to ruin her. Kuroko is a part of Judgment and her job is to keep the peace. Its a noble job in theory, but she rarely does anything of importance. She takes down some fighters, but she nearly messes up during her first big fight. If she would tone down her obsession with Misaka a few notches then maybe she could become cool. Unfortunately, that is likely never going to happen so I won’t be becoming a fan anytime soon.

Uiharu is one of Kuroko’s coworkers and she appears a lot. She is a decent character for the most part, but she lets her emotions cloud her judgment at times. When Haruue is introduced and the heroes begin to suspect her involvement in a string of incidents; Uiharu refuses to accept the idea and gets mad at them. That part of the series is really what wrecked her. Uiharu gets a lot of screen time and is really a part of the plot in the second half of the series. That being said, any development that may have been attained is quickly lost thanks to the way that her plotline goes. I cant say that I was ever a real fan of her character since she always let Saten tease and humiliate her, but it didn’t help her case when Uiharu chose her new friend over the old ones. I also don’t care for her personality shift that occurs when she is at Tokiwadai High as she becomes fierce and downright rude/mean in her excitement.

Saten is one of the main characters of the series and she is introduced to the rest of the gang by Uiharu. Saten is a level 0 esper and she is pretty sensitive about this fact. Unlike Touma, Saten never improves her fighting ability and we rarely see her trying to get better. That’s what makes it a little hard to sympathize with her plight. She also has a habit of embarrassing Uiharu from time to time. Despite Uiharu’s complaints, Saten continues to humiliate her in public and even in front of their friends. They are still best friends, but Saten should show some more consideration. Saten also lacks strength of character as she gets tempted by the Level Downer. The Level Downer isn’t half bad and I wouldn’t have minded if she used it to defend herself, but not if she’s just going to use it for fun even if it means going into a coma. It would appear that the supporting cast for this show is very weak aside from Touma.

Haruue joins the main cast towards the end of the show. The writers really try to make her fun and enjoyable, but it doesn’t work. This is what happens to many characters in anime and other forms of media. When a character like this is introduced at the end, the writers will try to make her as likable as they can so she is forced into just about every scene. She just doesn’t seem to have much of a point in this show. She is a large part of Arc 2, but it could have been everyone. It doesn’t help that she is the one who makes tension arise among the heroes.

Banri gets a pretty small role in the show because she’s out of it for the most part. She’ll get to appear more in the sequel show, but I was never a fan. She’s a nice kid and things just didn’t go well for her. I just don’t care for her because we hardly needed another character. She’s almost a clone of Haruue in terms of personality and she can’t really fight. Telepathy is good, but hers isn’t at a very high level.
Harumi is the main villain of the first arc and she’s the first tough opponent for Misaka in the show show. Before that, Misaka fought some other Espers and even some that had their powers increased by the Level Upper, but they couldn’t really do anything against her. Well, Harumi has abilities from dozens of espers so it makes sense that she would be tough. Their fight was one of the best in the series and the stakes were definitely a lot higher than usual. Harumi is a decently likable villain and at least she has some sympathetic reasons behind what she’s doing. She can actually back up her tough talk, which is always a plus.

Therestina is a big character from Arc 2 and she has her own mecha. She can fight in it, but she’s really not a match for any of the decent fighters so she makes sure to have a capacity down with her at all times. She’s really not likable because her motives don’t make a lot of sense and she seems petty. She has the generic “hardcore” scene where she steps on the only piece of data that could have helped some people. Therestina liked to hide behind her minions and she can’t really back up her tough talk. At least she gave us a decently fun fight towards the end of the series.

Jufuku is a pretty bad character. She feels bad about her eye brows so she knocks people out and then gives them ugly eyebrows that don’t come off for weeks. Her ability allows her to pass by unnoticed by others as long as you are not directly looking at her. It’s actually a decent ability, but it’s not great in a fight. Jufuku’s goal just seemed way too petty and I was just waiting for her to leave. In her future appearences, she’s still unlikable even though she underwent a big personality change. there’s just no winning for some characters.

Kongou is Kuroko’s rival and she’s also a Level 4. Her powers aren’t really explained in this show, but she has a fan so it should be easy to deduce what element her power revolves around. She doesn’t really get to do anything in this show so it’s really impossible to become a big fan. That being said, she’s an amusing character and I don’t mind her. She gets some good lines and she’s always very confident about her abilities. Her role in the sequel is much bigger so it’ll be easier to tell if you like her or not in that one.

Kurozuma is a man of mystery who disappeared for years along with his gang. The gang popped back up with a new man pretending to be Kurozuma and that made the real one come back. Kurozuma definitely knows his brand of milk and he’s always ready to beat up the villains. He’s great in hand to hand combat and he’s almost a likable character. What stops him from being one is the fact that he’s very rude to Misaka and Kuroko. The lines that he tells them are so awful that it immediately threw away any respect that I had for the guy. Once again, like Kuroko, Kurozuma could have been cool and then he wasted his potential. Naturally there are other side characters, but their roles are so small that they barely even need to be mentioned. (Even if some get a whole filler episode to themselves)

Railgun’s animation is very good. I admit that the sequel looks much better, which makes this one a little tougher to gauge after seeing. That being said, this one holds up very well and the Railgun blasts are always fun to watch. The fight scenes are also really good because the show can handle movement pretty well. When the characters are jumping around and using flashy attacks, it all flows together pretty well. The best fight in the series is probably the battle against Touma, but the fight against Harumi would definitely be close. I also liked the battle against the ground user and we had some other fun fights that were scattered around. I wouldn’t say that the animation is exceptional and it’s not quite as high budget as the regular Index show, but it’s good enough. It can hold its own against other shows from around this time and that’s what counts. As long as the animation doesn’t hurt the overall experience by looking like FLCL, it’s still a good thing and Railgun is definitely above average.

Railgun is a lot of fun and it seems like it would get a really high rating right? Unfortunately, fanservice brings down the overall score. Surprisingly, the fanservice seems to be very toned down from the regular Index series, but there’s still too much of it. I’m glad that it’s lowering (and the sequel has even less) but they’re got to pick up the pace. We get numerous hot spring scenes and other moments that are just there for no real reason. Almost every episode is liable to have something and we have a whole episode about swimsuits. Someone’s skirt is always being lifted as a practical joke, but that makes the scene even more unnecessary. All I wanted was a show with no fanservice, but this one couldn’t make it. It’s a good thing that the rest of the show is so good or things could have been dire. That being said, it makes it very hard to actually recommend this show to anyone.

The soundtrack for Railgun is pretty good. It’s not incredible, but the battle theme is fun and both of the openings were pretty well done. I would have liked some more rock music, but I suppose that there wasn’t much time for it since this series didn’t have a whole lot of action scenes. The theme song made for a good backdrop during the big fights anyway. At the very least, the battle theme is memorable and you won’t be forgetting the tunes anytime soon. (The cricket sound is practically a part of the soundtrack since it starts off every episode that takes place on a hot day!)
Overall, Railgun was a fun spin off to Index. It’s really just lighthearted fun and I wouldn’t really have any problems with it if not for the fanservice. Aside from those scenes, the series is just fun to watch and you’ll always walk away feeling lighthearted. It’s one of the reasons why I like to watch such series because it’s basically a slice of life with some action and intrigue. If you liked Index, then maybe you’ll like this show a lot because it certainly helped me become a fan of the franchise again. That being said, just wait for the sequel. Railgun S is much better and it’s one of the best all around shows out there. (For the first arc anyway) If you can get around the fanservice, then a Scientific Railgun is a very enjoyable watch and fans of almost any genre can get into it. (We even have mysteries and horror/ghost stories!)

Overall 5/10

One Above All vs Touma

The One Above All is a guy to be feared, but there’s no way that he can hope to defeat Touma. Touma has his right arm of justice and as you can see..it packs a punch! The One Above All would definitely go down in a single swing. He just can’t hope to match up against such power! Touma wins.

Touma vs Accelerator

Accelerator is back and now he’s up against Touma! Touma has always had an incredibly powerful right hook, but that won’t be enough to stop Accelerator. Accelerator’s far too fast and he’s also much stronger than Touma. Touma can try and land a solid hit against him, but it won’t be enough. Accelerator definitely outranks him at this point and if they ever have a rematch I know who I’m going for. Accelerator wins.