「まもるべきもの」 (Mamoru beki mono)
“Things to Protect”

Well cannot say you didn’t see that ending coming. Alright, maybe not the part where Esther and friends (Sister included) actually defeated the totally Isaac (no mistake there. Seriously), but come on, Accelerator, doing Accelerator things—and with Last Order for spice! Yeah, it was undeniably everything you could expect of an Index-verse story in direction and conclusion, but in the end I honestly couldn’t mind. The show hit all the right points, made all the right moves, and left just enough room to inevitably continue off on the same foot a few years down the line.

After all, I think we all know where that ending is going to lead.

Final Impressions

After the ungodly mess that was Index III, I’m certain quite a few Index-verse fans were internally dreading the appearance of Accelerator. For a franchise gone for so long to return on such a sour note really rammed a splinter hard into everything that made this universe so loved, raising some serious questions as to the intent and dedication of those finally (finally) continuing off where this popular series left off. Thankfully however, such disappointment and pessimism proved to be short-sighted as Accelerator not only helped right the ship, but show the Index-verse has plenty more entertainment to give in the seasons to come.

The main success of Accelerator, and the main reason I came to enjoy it so much was structure. Much like Railgun before it, Accelerator emphasized pacing and detail over rushing and chopping. This was a story dedicated to actually telling itself versus arriving at a set point in time, revelling in the journey over simply giving the audience what it assumed it wanted (see Black Bullet for a prime example). Now to be fair Accelerator’s premise is nothing overly complex—i.e. like most Index-verse and light novel stories—but like any tale it benefits significantly from taking the time to explain its points and build up a modicum of suspense before unleashing the carnage everyone comes to enjoy. This was a show which nailed the drip feed of action and details, minimizing info dumps and pseudoscience/magic babble while maximizing narrative advancement in terms of key characters. Never once did it feel like we were lingering too long on one particular scene or moving too fast through a certain development, and that ability made Accelerator all the stronger once the action kicked into high gear.

Where Accelerator could paradoxically be argued to stumble however, is its story. Much like Railgun and Index before it, Accelerator is somewhat divisive: you’ll either love it greatly, or just not understand where the fascination comes from. This is a series driven by its characters and absolutist philosophy—i.e. DA—and enhanced by its variety of science and magic, all of which author Kamachi Kazuma takes great pride in providing as much detail and description on. We only got wisps of it with Accelerator, but the likes of Esther, the Scavengers, and Accelerator’s mindset should indicate the amount of information lying behind the scenes, and if given the chance this is one show which would go all out to provide you everything you could ever want to know about every character seen on screen. We thankfully avoided the worst excesses here, but we’ll just have to see how well Accelerator can keep it up as we get deeper into its material.

In the end though Accelerator is one series I cannot come to complain about too much. It did all it had to, featured its main characters in all the right ways, and left off on a point leaving no unsolved mysteries to annoy as the years go by. For the Index-verse fan everything and more was gotten with this adaptation, ensuring (if only in some small capacity) that the future Railgun III won’t hit the same potholes afflicting Index III so badly. This was a show which did exactly what it had to, and in the world of Index there’s no higher praise to be had. It may be early days yet, but the resurrection of Index and friends is looking very bright indeed.


    1. because average otaku will have greater chance of girl falling from the sky on him than ordinary girl taking romantic interest with him… /jk
      this certainly deserves a tv tropes page

  1. https://randomc.net/image/To%20Aru%20Kagaku%20no%20Accelerator/To%20Aru%20Kagaku%20no%20Accelerator%20-%2012%20-%20Large%2004.jpg
    Ah, Isaac/Taowu/Hirumi… Falling victim to the classic “You are what you eat.” Losing your individuality in a hive mind is a Maltyb!tch, innit?

    *sighs wistfully* Farewell for now, Esther. And Hasami’s body can finally rest after all that stuff she’s been through.

    So what story arc is this scene foreshadowing? (Spoiler tag it if you must.) That honestly looks like a good starting point for Accelerator II.

    Unanswered questions and other thoughts:
    – I wonder if the distortions within the MISAKA Network caused by Isaac’s presence also caused Accelerator to manifest those “dark whirlwind wings” of his? (As seen in Index III.)
    – It took half a season, but Esther’s dagger finally found its mark.
    – Misaka Imouto wearing a nurse outfit was pretty nice. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) (To say nothing of Shirai Kuroko’s possible reactions if she saw that.)
    – LOL, Accelerator couldn’t resist one last cameo of Heavy Object.

    While I’m happy Accelerator managed to do well (and it had to), there’s still this nagging voice telling me to temper my expectations for Railgun III, lest I see it falling into the same trap as Index III. OTOH, I do hope Railgun III being released in 2020 will be more than enough time to iron out kinks adapting the source material into anime.

    1. @I see it falling into the same trap as Index III.

      Do you mean rushed material? They weren’t upfront about it but it was clear by the way Season 3 was handled that they wanted to get everything done so they can start on New Testament. They could have took it slower but then be forced to wait to get to NT, which I doubt they’d be happy starting a fifth season with.

      1. If Railgun III has fewer story arcs to cover in the span of a season (12 to 13 eps.) or two (24 to 26 eps.) compared to Index III‘s crapton of pre-New Testament story arcs compressed into 26 episodes, then perhaps I can breathe easier.

        On a different note, just read ahead on the Index wiki about that sequel hook.
        Show Spoiler ▼

  2. Yo…the latest pv of railgun III had animation that far surpassed anything in Index III and Accelerator. Now granted it’s just a 15 sec pv but i think it’s safe to say J.C staff threw their A-team on the railgun side (as they seem to do with this particular raildex series). Digging the updated Mikoto character design from Railgun S to Railgun T (which they are calling this third season.) No need to worry about rushed pacing; like with the accelerator anime, this season of railgun will probably focus on a singular arc for a majority of its run and then close it off with a lesser arc. I imagine the daihaiseisai arc will be stretched to about 14-16 eps and then the rest might be the liberal arts city arc (crossing fingers).

  3. Are Index-verse followers so traumatized by Index III that they can’t discuss another series without bringing up just how traumatized they are? There have been six seasons from Index of which one was horrific. I wish everyone would just get over it and stop seeing everything as a reflection of III. It’s tedious.

    I thought the show’s creators mentioned at the time that they didn’t particularly want to animate another season but did so because they thought that they should provide some closure for fans before moving on. Why do people continue to cry about it?

    1. Maybe because it’s worth mentioning; maybe because the problem with Index III goes beyond just the adaptation of Index. Maybe because adapting a source material just for the hell of it just because you want to get it out of the way is an affront to creative integrity and is, in general, not a proactive artistic practice that should ever be done. More importantly, I guess it’s worth asking why people bringing up the Index III dilemma bothers you so much?

      1. I think it is pointless and petty, and I dislike having to wade through it every episode of every show. Sure, I could never read anything about anything and thus avoid it all but I think my suggestion is the more reasonable approach — complain a bit, learn to cope, move on.

        The commentary on this show suffers when every column is compelled to include irrelevant comparisons with Index III — which for example, infect two of this particular column’s five paragraphs. It’s not the story.

        It was worth mentioning once or twice. It is no longer worth mentioning. Everybody who cares has had the discussion. Most readers here have had or read the discussion many times. Most readers here are watching Accelerator anyway. There are many affronts in life. This one is relatively minor. At some point, people benefit from getting over such inconsequential issues. At this point, the Index III problem is with its viewers.

        Instead of complaining ad nauseum to me (and other readers), those who can’t cope should complain to the other show’s creators.

      2. @Mockman ….But the conversations in this post and this thread don’t even get into the whole Index III mess to such a detail. You’re perturbed by the fact that it gets mentioned in passing during these posts? No offense whatsoever, but it sounds like you’re the one who’s getting overly-riled up about inconsequential comments regarding index III. You talk about the columns being polluted by Index III comparisons but these comparisons 1. Don’t become so pervasive so as to obfuscate the point of the write-ups or the discussions in the comment thread; 2. they do not devolve into mindless bashing. So ultimately, it feels like a bit of an exaggeration to say that it’s toxifying every discussion about a raildex show.

        And on the topic of inconsequential, the issues with Index III were not inconsequential. You can chock this up to a matter of opinion, but I think it’s fair to say that you’re dismissing the issue by characterizing it as such. Index III was a product of a production committee that decided that it was cool to half-ass an adaptation just because the fans wanted it. That’s like your parents complaining to you multiple times to complete a chore and you finally decide to do it, but rather than completing the chore correctly, you do a poor job just because you want to get right back to playing video games. How is that fair to anyone? Like seriously? The adaptation of Index III is also a result of poor work management at J.C. Staff, an issue that has been bleeding into their other projects for some time now but more so within the last few years. This is NOT inconsequential because it means that the level of polish to projects that are being produced by is lacking and that leaves fans cautious about how their favorite works will be handled by their production committee/staff. You claiming that the Index III issue was inconsequential ultimately comes off as a statement without much substance at all. I really don’t see how the Index III problem is “with it’s viewers.” The comments that have been made by people in the comments and in these write-ups have been mostly harmless and, as you so well put it, inconsequential; but yet you’re the one so bothered by it.

    2. This is an interesting debate because it legitimately can go both ways. There are plenty of fans for example who were expecting Index III to be more than a simple rush to the starting point—i.e. getting to the good, popular material—and a smorgasbord of character appearances, while plenty others are here just for the side stories or independent adventures of which Accelerator is just one and did a fantastic job in showcasing. I honestly had no major issues with Accelerator and liked this season a lot, which really stood out when I think back to my experience with Index III. For me it was just a case of the comparisons coming to mind better than some parts of the show, and the ubiquitous trait of negatives always being easier to discuss than positives.

      In hindsight though did I personally mention Index III and its issues too much and could I have striven to talk more about Accelerator itself overall? Most definitely. I do believe however it would’ve been difficult fully separating the two considering the period/positioning of their airing relative to each other and their airing environment. IMO it was easier to avoid discussing Index II with Railgun S for example because Index II was both made/paced better and fell at a time where there was no indication of a major delay between seasons. It was a high water mark for the Index-verse adaptations as a whole which let their individual series strengths shine through better. Accelerator for better or worse is the real start of the new Index (and lacks a previous adaptation for easy comparison), so comparing between it and Index III, besides being a natural relationship, can help alleviate some of the worry fans may have about certain design choices carrying over between series (because let’s face it, the Index-verse is basically a J.C. Staff property at this point). I don’t expect similar discussions and comparisons like these to occur for Railgun T because those arguments will largely be restricted to how well it matches up to the Railgun we’ve so far received.

  4. Those issues are inconsequential to Accelerator, which is the purported focus of this page/category. Discuss it in the first episode of Index III, maybe the second (or whenever that series really drove into the ditch), and then the post-season write-up. But that show ended in April and this is a different show. It doesn’t belong here and it doesn’t add anything positive to this show.

    FWIW, I disagree on its effects on this column’s writing. It doesn’t need to go as far as you suggest to have an impact. Of the ‘final impressions’, about 40% is related to Index III and the rest was related to the franchise as a whole. But what about this series in its own right? No so much. Contrast that with the commentary for any of the series’ finales that preceded III or even with the write-up for III itself. I certainly don’t want to see more of it when Railgun III comes out (and take note of context of the single mention of that upcoming show).

    To clarify on the matter of viewers… at the end of the day, a series sucked. Lots of series suck. Lots of everything sucks. Nobody was injured here. If someone can’t let that go eventually….

    Finally, I wrote a single comment on the finale page for a different show. Don’t get carried away.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *