Saturday, 5 December 2009

To Aru Kagaku no Railgun - Episode 10

Poor old Saten was left with quite the moral dilemma come the end of the last episode of To Aru Kagaku no Railgun - Should she use the Level Upper mechanism she managed to stumble across to finally grant her the esper powers she desires, or should she simply turn in what she knows to Judgement?

Of course, the latter wouldn't give us much of a story to work with, so come the start of this tenth instalment we see Saten not only using Level Upper herself despite continuing to be racked with doubt, but also sharing the knowledge with a handful of her friends, all of whom see a marked increase in their abilities. Meanwhile, Uihara and Shirai are finally on the trail of Level Upper themselves, having worked out its delivery mechanism but not why or how it works. There isn't much time to consider such things either, as Kuroko finds herself well and truly overworked by the huge increase in Level Upper users rampaging around town.

Of course, eventually the use of Level Upper begins to take its toll, with first one of Saten's friends collapsing and falling into a coma right in front of her eyes - A state of affairs that finally coaxes her into confessing everything to Uihara in a surprisingly emotional exchange. But is it too late for Saten? More importantly, who is behind the Level Upper phenomenon, what are they doing with it and what are their goals? Come the end of the episode, we learn the shocking answer to one of these questions, but the other two remain at large for the next episode.

I don't think I can really beat about the bush with this one - This tenth instalment of To Aru Kagaku no Railgun was easily the best this series has delivered so far, hands down. I suppose this isn't such a shock considering that we're now safely ensconced in a major story arc, but this episode in particular has handled itself perfectly with its blend of humour, a well-paced and progressed storyline and some genuine emotion to go alongside it. Neither this series or To Aru Majutsu no Index could ever really be described as a tear-jerker, but I have to admit that Saten's conversation with Uihara at the half-way point of this episode was genuinely quite moving - Perhaps evidence of how I've warmed to these characters over the series. That aside, the entire Level Upper premise is now entering some fascinating territory which holds plenty of promise for the finale to this story, and the way everything is coming together feels just right for this kind of series. I'm very much looking forward to episode eleven now, I just hope it can match this one for quality.


Anonymous said...

Despite liking the characters somewhat, I didn't find the tears in this episode very convincing or moving. I guess it's because Saten's only real purpose so far has been to set this scene up.

Dmitry said...

I've noticed that there's definitely a supercar lover in the show, and that so far both of the "evil scientists" (the one who tried to kill Last Order in Majutsu no Index and now the stripper lady) have had nice wheels. The former had a Lexus LFA and the latter a Lamborghini Gallardo. Quite detailed, too.

Dmitry said...

Correction to previous post: when I said "in the show", I meant "working on the show."

Blacksun88 said...

This series is getting better and better. While not losing the comedy part (lol-ed hard at the scene when Kuroko throw Uiharu at Mikoto XD), the plot and tension is piling up and leads up to the heartwarming moment between Saten and Uiharu. For those that said the scene was lame, I can only say they are those cocky persons that do not understand the feeling of helplessness of those inferior people.