Saturday, 8 January 2011

To Aru Majutsu no Index II - Episode 13

After what seems like about twenty years of running around, largely aimlessly, To Aru Majutsu no Index II's latest story arc finally takes us to an out of the way airfield for said arc's finale.

Cue what really turns into little more than a glorified and magic-infused punch-up, with Oriana on one side and Stiyl and Touma on the other, with the usual shifting balance of power and aggression that such scraps bring coupled with chunks of dialogue as Touma in particular tries to convince is opponent of the error of her ways... before giving up on that and just punching her in the face a few times instead.

Despite defeating Oriana however, the problem of the Croce Di Pietro and its impending activiation still remains, and with news filtering through that this religious device is in place outside of Academy City and just minutes away from being activated, it appears as though all hope is lost and there's nothing that Touma and company can do about it.  What sort of miracle can possibly save the day at a time like this?

Fireworks.  Yes, that's right ladies and gentleman - fireworks are our saviour here, blocking the view of the stars in the sky and thus preventing Croce Di Pietro's activation.  In other words, this entire god damned story arc was a complete waste of time - Oriana was little more than a decoy, and Lidvia's plans were never going to work from the start because she hadn't checked the timetable for the bloody school sports day!  With that all done and dusted, we're left with a few Touma-related items to polish things off at his end, while Lidvia seemingly gets her come-uppance as she tries to flee with the Croce Di Pietro - or does she?

I'm not going to beat about the bush here - this story arc sucked, horribly so.  After all of those episodes of running around and wasting time with frivolities, the entire plan by the Roman Catholic church to take over Academy City was defeated by motherfucking fireworks?!  It's almost enough to make Endless Eight's ending feel like a deep and complex way to end an otherwise overly long story.  On the positive side there were some nicely done shots of animation during Touma and Stiyl's fight with Orsola, but that's scant consolation for a story arc that dragged us along for so many episodes for the sake of a fireworks display.  Words fail me, they really do....

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