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To Aru Kagaku no Accelerator – 02 »

To Aru Kagaku no Accelerator – 01

「学園都市最強能力者 (アクセラレータ)」 (Gakuen Toshi Akuserareeta)
“Academy City Accelerator”

The Index franchise certainly hasn’t had the best of times of late. After a six year period following the release of Railgun II, we finally got a continuation in Index III which turned into arguably the biggest and crudest adaptation hatchet job to date. For even Index fans it was an acquired taste at the best of times, and though the promise of more Railgun and Accelerator here helped salve the wounds, doubt is par the course for the Index universe these days. The good news however is that Accelerator looks set to make up for some of that major missed opportunity, and while first impressions are never a good predictor of future success, it’s hard seeing how this one could seriously screw up.

Much like Railgun, Accelerator falls inside the main Index timeline and deals with events uncovered by the main season. In this case things start off just after Accelerator (Okamoto Nobuhiko) got his bullet to the brain (Index I episode 20) and is recovering in hospital—with a little help from everyone’s favourite chibi Misaka Last Order (Hidaka Rina). If you can remember back that far there should be no surprises here: Last Order is just as adorable and verbal tic repeating as ever, Accelerator is as brooding and uncaring (on the surface, you know exactly what lies underneath), and plenty of the other science side characters look like they never left—at least outside some art updates. The real satisfaction (at least for me) is in the personalities and attitudes at play in this series; given the period of time in which we’re working there’s a lot of the starting opinions and beliefs lost and grown out of during Index II and III, which considering the latter’s implosion makes for some very fun and nostalgic viewing. Sure it may all be relatively simplistic, but you could give me Misaka clone and Last Order banter with Accelerator any day of the week and I will forever be a happy man.

Outside of the return of quintessential Index characters as well is Accelerator’s premise, and for anyone familiar with Railgun there will be no surprises here either. Science-based conspiracies are going to be the name of the game, with the first one this week with our high school trio being more or less an introduction to the greater shenanigans to come. Accelerator, even in his physical state, has a great deal of power, Last Order’s origins and abilities are incredibly useful, and we all know just how many plots and schemes are perpetually at work under the surface of Academy City. May take a while before the primary story rears its esper influenced head, but you can bet on some serious crazy before all is said and done. The science side of the Index franchise after all has never pulled its punches.

It may only be early days, but Accelerator is certainly off on the right foot. Now we just have to see whether it can keep it up.

 

OP Sequence

OP: 「Shadow is the Light」by THE SIXTH LIE

Preview

July 13, 2019 at 2:29 pm
26 comments »
  • July 13, 2019 at 2:54 pmmac65

    It was an okay start, it didn’t have the first episode magic that Railgun S
    had for it’s first episode (the one where she takes a helicopter out to get
    the bag back). I think that smooth flow isn’t quite up to par in this first
    episode the way I remember it, this seemed a little choppy.

    Hopefully, it’ll improve with later episodes.
    Still a watcher unless it goes the way of Index III…

  • July 13, 2019 at 3:03 pmLyfe

    Pancakes, do you see them announcing a season 2 after it concludes for the season? It seems odd that for a franchise that has always had like 24/26 episode seasons to just do 12. Maybe JC Staff overloaded themselves and won’t do more until the season after next?

    • July 13, 2019 at 9:43 pmPancakes

      Likely comes down to how far the manga gets, there’s only one complete arc so far and fan consensus is it’s just enough for a single season (with a little anime original filler like this week). Considering the second arc is still ongoing the choice of length is a pretty good choice IMO, we’ll avoid an anime original ending and the rushing/chopping which plagued Index III. I seriously doubt they’ll only give us one season of Accelerator, but I’m not sure yet if the next will follow immediately after or if we’ll have a few years break.

  • July 13, 2019 at 5:04 pmYuhsaku

    Personally, I’m not sure if I like how the characters are drawn. Perhaps, my baseline is Index 2, Railgun and Railgun 2. Still has something to do with budget I guess.

    • July 13, 2019 at 9:45 pmPancakes

      Yeah the art style here is a little weird considering the previous Index/Railgun artwork. Not sure if it’s budget though, might just be J.C. Staff trying to aesthetically differentiate Accelerator from the rest.

    • July 14, 2019 at 12:50 amAngelus

      I know JC Staff are having a busy season, but did they put their D team on this or something? I could recognise Accelerator, but who was the little girl with him? She had Last Order’s voice and her verbal mannerisms, but did the key animators not even bother to watch any of her previous outings? The mouth was just plain wrong a lot of the time.

    • July 20, 2019 at 3:37 pmRPG_Fanatic

      The Accelerator manga has a different artist, so the art style ends up being different. Compared to Index and Railgun, the difference is quite noticeable.

  • July 13, 2019 at 6:30 pmDP

    Good opening episode. After the incoherent mess that Index 3, I was worried, but the Science side has usually been better done, and this was no exception. Perhaps could have used some more exposition on who the supporting characters were for those who don’t eat and breath the light novels or have photographic memories, but even so it was easy enough to follow and fairly entertaining, especially considering it was apparently an anime-original setup episode.

    • July 13, 2019 at 9:47 pmPancakes

      I wouldn’t worry yet about exposition until the main plot gets going, these sort of episodes always were for introductions and re-familiarization so I expect additional info to crop up soon, especially for side characters. There’ll be less characters overall to deal with than Index proper which will also help matters lol.

  • July 13, 2019 at 7:28 pmchris

    Great 1st episode

  • July 13, 2019 at 9:39 pmInstantNoodles

    Why do I enjoy Railgun so much better than Index every time?

    • July 13, 2019 at 9:48 pmPancakes

      Science > Magic :P

    • July 14, 2019 at 11:06 amCroosboy

      Music > Science > Magic. Just kidding.

    • July 17, 2019 at 1:37 pmcvb

      Seasons 2 and 3 of Index have been a mess, they cramped too much things on them and had to cut essential parts, so either has no sense or is rushed. The spin offs focus better on particular characters and develop properly.

      I don’t understand why they wouldn’t do more spin offs instead or overloading the main story. Mitsuwa has its own spin off, Hamazura could also been done like that. We have been waiting so many years it wouldn’t really matter how much story they tell us everytime, instead of a single 2 cour they could have done two 1 cour focusing on a single character and their surroundings.

      Not counting they have too much on their plate. Greed is really ugly.

  • July 14, 2019 at 3:57 amHenrietta Brix

    I am still upset that Index 3 was a mess.

    I am more upset that there’s not enough Vectors going boom in this opening episode.

    I was hoping that Accelerator would have started before Railgun 1 time line. It’ll be interesting to see his side of Sister’s Arc though that’ll be a painful one to watch.

    • July 14, 2019 at 3:57 amHenrietta Brix

      And I now dub thee series… AccelRailDex

      • July 15, 2019 at 6:08 amMagnus Tancred

        AcceleRailDex rolls of the tongue better. :D

  • July 14, 2019 at 11:10 amCroosboy

    I seriously don’t know what to expect with this series of To aru. ¯\_(– )_/¯

    • July 16, 2019 at 2:46 pmURGH

      Trainwreck, lol.
      And not even amusing.

  • July 14, 2019 at 12:48 pmewok40k

    helluva better than the mess that was Index in last season
    give me a henchman gang of a week, and final boss reveal at the end of season for Accelerator to have actually use more than fraction of his powers…
    and some Last Order and/or clones banter to keep things funny

  • July 15, 2019 at 11:18 amChris hall

  • July 16, 2019 at 2:46 pmURGH

    Is that a fucking MONOBROW NOTCH. Ahahahaha what the hell.

  • July 16, 2019 at 4:06 pmMockman

    The opener falls into the ‘okay’ category for me. Overall I enjoyed it, but it had a couple of things that I didn’t like at all.

    The hospital corridor scene dragged on forever and I thought that Antiskill (and the writer) was painfully stupid in how they led the radically violent thugs, with their murderous intent, right up to the children’s playroom — while facing villains using a weapon that cuts effortlessly through everything from human flesh to reinforced concrete. Then they cap it off with a suicide plan. And in between, the whole gas thing was a fail for me. This scene just sucked and eventually I was just hoping it would end soon.

    While I think that the show’s artists have always done a good job with Misaka and MISAKA, I’ve never really appreciated Last Order’s design. So I’m not sure yet whether I like this version of her more or less. I seems that they have changed how they draw her perpetually rosy cheeks, the gleam in her eyes and also made her hair simpler. Maybe it’s because she is going to get more screen time. Her pattern of speech loses its charm for me when she doesn’t complete her sentences, which meant pretty much every time she opened her mouth to talk about her stupid treats. The conflicting verbal tics made for a mess.

    In general, I thought the artwork was pretty good. I gather that this was just an appetizer and things will begin for real next week.

  • July 17, 2019 at 11:03 amsnappy

    Good but not great. Not yet anyway, but I’m so looking forward to this show.

    Basically fell in love with the guy ever since he made that 56k dial up modem sound in Index.

  • July 21, 2019 at 6:46 amKimberly

  • July 30, 2019 at 10:04 pmFethor

    As a huge Railgun but Index antifan, i am super disappointed in this. I sm ready to get back to the Railgun cast and the pseudo Misaka standins are exceptionally annoying. When do we get season 3 of Railgun? I’m gonna die of disappointment before then.

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