Saturday, 23 October 2010

To Aru Majutsu no Index II - Episode 3

After spending almost all of its second episode on plot build-up and exposition (before seemingly losing interest in all of that and finishing up with a hefty dose of fan service instead), you'd expect this third instalment of To Aru Majutsu no Index II to get right down to business, and thankfully it does more or less exactly that.

With Touma and Index finding themselves working alongside both Stiyl and a bunch of Roman Catholic nuns, the latter act as a decoy while the other parties can work to find the missing Liber Al vel Legis and Orsola Acquinas, both of whom are assumed to be under the watchful eye of the powerful Amakusa.  This means that it isn't too long until we get hit with a bout of action, with Touma in particular left to his own devices, leaving him needing to both despatch some of those Amakusa members before fortuitously running into Orsola herself.

From here, we quickly progress to what you might have expected to be a major skirmish between Touma, Stiyl and the Amakusa's leader Tatemiya Saiji, but in truth this particular battle is over relatively quickly thanks to Touma's unique ability and a little bit of clever tactical teamwork.  However, the story is far from over here, as Saiji suggests that it's the Roman Catholic church that are the bad guys in all of this, and that it is they who have set out to kill Orsola rather than the Amakusa.  While Touma finds himself torn as to whether or not this is true, goings-on around him soon suggest that he's had the wool pulled over his eyes in a major fashion.  Throw some talk of Kanzaki into the mix, and you have yourself your completed episode.

After losing its way last week, this was a definite improvement for the series which managed to keep things moving without getting too bogged down for too long in dialogue, throwing us just enough action to hold our interest before adding in a tasty plot twist for us to chew on.  While I'm still not entirely engrossed in this current story arc, it has a fair shot at providing a decent story as long as it can knuckle down and not find itself distracted from the big picture or moving its plot forward to often.  To Aru Majutsu no Index tends to be at its best when it just runs with its concepts and lets them flow, so hopefully it'll allow this particular story arc to do just that as it moves forth.

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