Level E 10

This was one of those episodes I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop: was this mermaid-type maiden actually the Prince in drag again? Would some unexpected comedic twist break through all the syrupy sentiment and seriousness? Well, in a word, no.

Prince wasn’t present at all. And even though this episode was played mostly straight, with hardly any laugh-out-loud moments (although Yokota always looks funny, what with his mustache, gut and grey hair), but you know what? I still enjoyed it. Level E tells such good, interesting stories with such regularity, they more than earned the right to do a more serious and dramatic one.

I didn’t even mind the return of the Color Rangers, even though I didn’t expect to see any more of them. The fact that they carry on their duties as rangers shows that Prince’s schemes don’t always end in bitter suffering for others; something good comes out of them, on occasion. The kids’ alien teacher even makes a cameo, helping out in he nick of time, then slinking away just as briskly. Considering she’s a talented assassin, and overly flashy would miss the point, her limited role was logical. Rating: 3

To Aru Majutsu no Index II 22

Hmm…not much to say here. Touma fights Vento and inevitably punches her after she reveals why she hates science so much (and it’s a fairly flimsy one…the hospital didn’t have enough blood to save both her and her brother after an amusement park ride accident? Really?) Naturally, an even more powerful member of God’s Right Hand shows up to collect her; Touma barks at him, and yet another future duel is set up. Can’t Touma lose occasionally, just to spice things up?

Meanwhile, back in some office where Kihara has Last Order hostage, Accelerator fights him until he “runs out of juice”, then fights some more. The stamina of this guy, seriously. He also lets out a few Niizuma Eiji-esque adolescent squeals for good measure, refusing to go down even when Kihara tosses a grenade on his face (!). Accelerator is so hell-bent on protecting the munchkin, he even grows black wings and launches himself and Kihara into the stratosphere like a rocket…though that may have had something to do with Index’s singing…I’m not quite sure.

And as Mikoto Misaka was fighting off Hound Dog, the whole trio had stuff to do. I just wish I cared more about it now that so much has been built up. Sadly, listening to Index try to understand what’s going on herself while on the phone with Misaka kind of justifies my bemused indifference to the events of this episode. A whole lot of stuff happens, but the impact is sadly lacking. I guess all the complex factional wrangling and all the religious, magical and scientific mumbo-jumbo is starting to jade me. Rating: 3