Saturday, 13 July 2013

A Certain Scientific Railgun S - Episode 14

In spite of her promise to Kuroko, there's no sign of Misaka returning back to the dorm as another day draws to a close.  As Kuroko frets over what to do and exactly what is going on in Mikoto's life, it seems like at least some of the answers to these questions has literally just arrived on her doorstep.

After inviting Touma in to wait for Misaka with a view towards quizzing him about what's going on (and perhaps more importantly for Kuroko, what his relationship with her beloved roommate is), circumstances intervene to prevent her from doing so - circumstances which also allows Touma to happen upon all of the documentation about the Sisters project kept to hand by Misaka.

Now with a full realisation of exactly what's going on, Touma sets off immediately to track down Misaka, and it's this meeting which towers above all else in this episode - Mikoto is now determined that the only course of action to bring this project, or at least her own suffering, to an end is to confront and be immediately defeated by Accelerator to confound the scientist's predictions.  Of course, Touma is having none of this and refuses to allow Misaka to sacrifice herself, neither refusing to stand down nor to attack her friend to prevent her from doing so.  But does he really have a better plan to end this nefarious scheme?  Well, yes, he just might actually.

In terms of its emotional impact, this is the obvious high point of this story arc, and once again A Certain Scientific Railgun S delivers absolutely in terms of translating it from the original manga into animated form.  It's a decidedly simple episode where not much happens in absolute terms, but everything that does happen is so heavily weighted with importance that it makes for an intense instalment that makes full use of an equally intense turn from Misaka (and of course her voice actress) to deliver the despair and sense of hopelessness that comes with it.  One of the things that makes this series as a whole something special is its ability to leverage its characters to drop an emotional payload when required, and this week's episode is absolute proof of that as it adds to its roster of superb offerings that do their job almost perfectly.

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