|Great main arc, Good fights, Mikoto really grows as a character through this||The second arc is a step down from the main one|
There are times even when you know something big is coming that it can still reach you and make you care about what is going on. Railgun S really was one of those series that still was just as amazing and impacting whether or not you saw the original Index series or read the Railgun manga. On its own this definitely stands up there as one excellent series that had some great moments and excellent character development for its main character. Certainly makes me a little sad to say goodbye to it until a sequel likely happens.
Of course Railgun was a tale of two series in a sense. The majority of the series covered one single arc and did it to near perfection. The last few episodes were more of an original arc that tried to reflect on what happened in the first half and bring a bit of closure to a few things while trying to tell its own story. I can’t say that the second arc was anything close to the quality of the first arc, but it wasn’t anything terrible either. Just a bit of average in comparison to something that really was well done.
Jumping right into it the story told in the Sisters Arc was something I’m going to remember for a while. Mikoto came into this series on a really high note. Things were going pretty well for her. I mean Banri and the other kids were getting their lives back together, she had a good group of friends and believed that Academy City was a great place where she and other espers belonged. The series really is about the shocking revelations that she goes through as the reality of Academy City and its darkness is revealed to her. How someone with that much power can feel incredibly helpless against the forces at work and how someone just responds to that kind of extreme situation. The story really was the best part of that arc and even dominated the direction that the arc that followed took.
Honestly the story was just really compelling once it got going. It took a few episodes to ease in, but once the main revelation dropped then everything just took off. It really took Mikoto’s character into a new direction in a hurry. That kind of situation that was so shocking and yet a situation that she blamed herself for. It wasn’t something that she could comfortably turn to others for help especially since her opponents included the most powerful esper in the world and an organization that she couldn’t fight through legitimate means.
The best parts were also the hardest ones. You could see how it just broke up Mikoto to realize the role she inadvertently played in allowing this situation to happen. Of course it was something no one would ever blame her for though. But that guilt really carries Mikoto through this arc and really pushes her not only to carry on no matter how painful it got, but also to carry that load alone. Being a Level 5 only reflects her ability level, it doesn’t mean she’s somehow a super human emotionally.
It’s hard to really dive into it without talking about every facet of the story. Simply put, Mikoto grows as a character though it isn’t without suffering. She loses the simple innocence of not realizing what was going on behind the scenes in Academy City, but she grows into a more developed person and a stronger one.
Moving away from the story a bit, the series really delivered on the action when it was time for it. Every episode wasn’t full on action though. It was a more emotional series than just battles every week. But there were plenty of those and they did a good job with them. We really got to see Mikoto be pushed to her limits more and not have such an easy time. She had to face people who were involved with the darker side of the city and were plenty used to life or death fights. There was quite the display of abilities and tactics in the bigger episodes of this series. Of course at the end of the series they just went all over the place with various battles so the series is worth watching until the end if you want to have fun watching espers getting into some great fights.
The music was also really well done. When things got bad the music never really felt out of place to me. They also made good use of alternate ending music to make some of the scenes at the end of episodes really have more impact. There are only a few songs that really stood out, but I thought overall it did a good job.
The only downside really was that second arc of the series. Of course with only seven episodes there was a limited amount of things they could do. I was glad they attempted to tie things into the previous arc a little bit and through that conclude a few minor plot-lines that could have been left untouched. It as somewhat predictable though and the villains weren’t anything special. Still, I don’t think it brings down the quality of this season overall.
Railgun S was a great ride. It built things up slowly and was a roller coaster of ups and downs until the climax of its main arc. The rest of the season was just a good chance to focus on the other characters that weren’t as important during the main arc. The best episodes of Railgun I think could go up against any of the other series that was currently airing. We had character driven episodes, an emotional ride, and a really well done main arc. All in all I’ll call that a great series.
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