「座標移動（ムーブポイント）」 (Zahyō Idō (Mūbu Pointo))
“Coordinate Movement (Move Point)”
Well, that was certainly a quick finish. As I mentioned last week, this arc (volume 8) was set to be covered in two episodes, and thus this felt a bit rushed, but at least the pacing wasn’t as bad as last week’s episode. That said, I didn’t like how the anime portrayed the arc, as it felt as if characters were just being thrown in for no particular reason and it didn’t address the importance of Last Order and Accelerator being shown, i.e. why Last Order remembered Accelerator despite the fact that all her memories from the time she first met Accelerator were wiped. I suppose in the context of the anime we can just assume she doesn’t remember when she first met Accelerator and simply sees him as a guardian, but even from that perspective, J.C.Staff didn’t portray it well. Furthermore, the plot overall felt very disjointed and difficult to follow, and due to the pace it was difficult to get a good sense of the atmosphere of the arc and the character’s true emotions with scenes hopping all over the place. By that, I mean an average viewer probably would not be able to fully grasp that this was a continuation of the SISTERs arc being told from Kuroko’s perspective, and to a larger extent wouldn’t be able to understand why Awaki suddenly went nuts, without re-watching these last two episodes multiple times, and even then the emotional value wouldn’t be very high. It’s also a shame that they didn’t include the talk between Touma and Kuroko after the resolution of this arc. All of this could have been avoided and properly resolved if the arc had been given three episodes instead of two, which has thus far been the minimum amount an arc would be capped at in the Index anime. To say I was overall disappointed with the decision to only give this arc two episodes wouldn’t be a stretch, but I understand why J.C.Staff made that decision and hopefully we’ll be grateful that they did later on in Index II, but for now, I’m frownyfaced.
My nitpicking of the portrayal of the plot aside, I was very pleased with the production and choreography of the events themselves. Awaki and Kuroko’s second teleportation battle was great, and one of the new BGM that was played during Awaki’s monologue scene was excellent and set the mood for that particular scene well, even if the episode overall felt disjointed. Awaki losing her mind from Kuroko’s preaching felt a bit random as the anime portrayed her as being completely calm last episode and neglected to show her inner feelings, but I thought the scene of her losing her mind was awesome and the rape face she made during the scene was especially delicious. It should have been made clear how crazy she was once she shot Kuroko, which was gruesome, but if that didn’t get the point across, her kicking the gun wound and then attempting to drop the entire building they were in on top of Kuroko should have even more. Talk about kicking the puppy while it’s down. Of course, thanks to that we got to see a brief display of what it would be like if Touma and Mikoto ever teamed up for a fight, with Touma using his ninja skills to jump across debris and catch Kuroko in midair before canceling Awaki’s teleportation by destroying space-time with his hand (HOLY SHIT). In regards to this scene, in the novels Mikoto used her magnetism to hold together the falling debris in a stair like position so Touma could run across them, but I’m guessing this couldn’t be portrayed very well in the anime so J.C.Staff just decided to skip that small detail. Meh, either way it looks cool.
And of course, I can’t forget Accelerator, who delivered this week’s Falcon Punch and some more awesome GENDER EQUALITY. His entire scene left a tingle up my leg, and I liked the shift in art style J.C.Staff chose to do for the scene, showing a flatter, grayer Academy City on a one-way road, an obvious reference to Accelerator’s name. The change in art set up the despairing mood and almost dream-like, unbelievable situation Awaki found herself in well. The creepiness of Accelerator’s constantly changing expressions and voices really helped to be build up the mood as well, and the climax punch was probably the most awesome moment in Index II so far. It felt somewhat random due to J.C.Staff’s rushing, and I would’ve appreciated if they had made more clear the magnitude of the fact Accelerator, the one who killed over 10,000 SISTERs, basically just stopped the resurrection of the Level 6 Shift Project himself by destroying the remnants of the Tree Diagram, but just taking the scene for what it was, I found it very enjoyable and exciting. Also, there was another great new piece of BGM played for this scene as well, and based on the new pieces I’ve heard in the past 3 episodes, I’m really looking forward to Index II’s OST.
So with this arc behind us, we’re moving onto the Daihaseisai, which was mentioned back in episode 2 and in passing by Mikoto last episode. It’s a congregation of all the schools in Academy City, so we can definitely expect more of Mikoto and some other great surprises. The superb art that was present in the last two episodes seems to carry over into next episode as well judging from the preview, which already has me looking forward to it. This arc’s structure and resolution left me with mixed feelings, at least as far as the portrayal of the events went, and with the upcoming arc having so much potential to be a fun watch, here’s to hoping J.C.Staff will do a better job of striking a balance in pacing as they most likely will not rush the hell out of everything.
*This episode covers volume 8 Chapter 4 Part 1 to the Epilogue of volume 8, with parts of Chapter 3 “Between the Lines 3” mixed in (pages 143-245).