After throwing various factions into the melting pot and then turning things on their head by shifting the true purposes of those factions somewhat, To Aru Majutsu no Index II seems to have set itself up with a somewhat hefty and twisting plot as we reach its fourth episode.
As this instalment begins the truth about what's going on has pretty much emerged however, with the Amakusa proving themselves to be the wannabe saviours rather than captors of Orsola Acquinas, while the Roman Catholic church turns out to be the villain of the piece after all (dare I make a comment about real-life resemblances here?). However, with Orsola gone the Anglican church and Stiyl's part in proceedings is no more, leaving them happy to walk away - not so for Touma however, who is still burning with the injustice of it all. So, as you'd expect he sets off alone to try and rescue Orsola from one of her own churches where she's held captive.
After a pretty long monologue from Sister Agnese (long needless discussions in this show? Who would have thought!) we finally get to the crux of the matter, with Touma preparing to face off against the numerous Roman Catholic sisters alone before he finds that Stiyl, the Amakusa and Index have all turned up for the ride, while the cross which Touma gave Orsola last episode gives the Anglican church the perfect excuse to intervene. Cue lots of pretty brutal action and fighting, while even Index comes in handy for once, although it appears as though the Roman Catholics have a plan to deal with her danger. Throw in yet another organisation that seems to be willing things along from the background, and life certainly doesn't look like it's going to get any easier for our main characters.
Going from watching that To Aru Kagaku no Railgun OVA earlier today, you can't help but notice how much slicker that series feels to To Aru Majutsu no Index, which almost becomes bogged down in things as it threatens to over-complicate and/or over-explain matters too much. Once it comes to the crunch things run smoothly enough, but again here we had to wait almost fifteen minutes for the action to kick off, complete with at least some dialogue that felt a little unnecessary. It isn't enough to ruin this series, but it does take a little of the sheen off of its sense of overall fun.