To Aru Majutsu no Index III – 16 – Something Pretty Substantial is Happening

Hamazura uses all the guile and resourcefulness he can muster to get to Takitsubo, settling on commandeering a helicopter (the pilot basically agrees to drop him off, but has to report it as a hijacking). In doing so, he ignores Takitsubo’s warnings about Spark Signal being too heavily armed for Hamazura to rush in recklessly.

Of course, since Hamazura is classically a rush in and figure out everything later kinda dude, that’s what he does. When he finds Takitsubo, Accelerator is looming over her, but has no real ill will towards either of them until Hamazura picks a fight.

Accelerator uses minimal effort to beat the crap out of Hamazura before leaving him to be comforted by Takitsubo. Neither of the former ITEMers are in particularly good shape, but they’re at least better off together as they search for Kinuhata.

Meanwhile, Stephanie has made Kinuhata her present primary target, urging her to make peace with the fact she’s going to take her life for what happened to Sunazara.

Shortly after the subject of DRAGON comes up in the RV, it’s targeted and destroyed by a missle, and the electricity in Accelerator’s gear is cut. He eventually wakes up in the car of the guy whose beloved teacher he saved, proving that even villains are paid back for their good deeds, even if Accelerator didn’t expect it.

The other members of GROUP having survived, Tsuchimikado sends Accelerator to talk with Director Oyafune for political help in bringing down Shiokishi after he betrayed GROUP. Her bodyguard insists she’s no longer involved in the fight against the Dark Side of Academy City ever since her daughter was taken hostage.

But when one of the little kids Accelerator saved from Spark Signal demands to come and fight alongside him (he calls Accelerator a “hero”, the opposite of what he constantly calls himself), Oyafune is done being a coward who does nothing to stop the darkness.

Hamazura and Takitsubo finally locate Kinuhata, but she’s been driven into the metro by Gorgeouspalace, who sets the whole station aflame with explosions in an attempt to rob Kunuhata of the nitrogen she needs to fight. Will she, a Level 4 after all, yet be able to fight Steph off?

With Oyafune in tow, Accelerator and Musujime infiltrate Shiokishi’s “fortress”—the guy is a war hawk after all—and are quickly separated from Oyafune by blast walls. Musujime is then knocked out by poison administered when Shiokishi’s boyguard Koga lights a cigarette. Accelerator will have to deal with the man—part of an age-old family of tough, troublesome thieves—on his own.

As for Oyafune, she looks particularly vulnerable trying to negotiate with a guy so paranoid he’s wearing a mech suit. When negotiations break down Shiokishi prepares to kill her, but she reveals she’s not Oyafune at all, but Etzali in disguise. She may be in a safe(r) place at the moment, but she still had to sacrifice the skin on her arm so he could take her form. Now the negotiations will continue, as Etzali demands to know what DRAGON is.

They’re interrupted by two more guards Shiokishi sends in, only for them to pull of their skin masks to reveal they are two members of Etzali’s old group, Return of the Winged One. As if there weren’t enough tangled interests involved in this arc. I tell ya, it’s as if you can’t trust any face you see on this show!

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Author: magicalchurlsukui

Preston Yamazuka is a staff writer for RABUJOI.

2 thoughts on “To Aru Majutsu no Index III – 16 – Something Pretty Substantial is Happening”

  1. I’m wondering what the hell is going on in this arc most of the time. Like who the hell is Shiokishi? We’ve never heard of him before this episode. I know its somehow building the tension but without knowing what the central point of all this running around blowing each up is, it is all somewhat pointless to me. I’ve never been a fan of these Academy City espionage arcs. For me they aren’t ACMI core business at all, and are a distraction and perhaps even filler in lieu of the main characters’ story lines.

    One question I have in relation to these espionage arcs is that in past series, it was very clear that Alastair controls the Managing Directors and changes them around at will. They are pretty much completely expendable as he holds the reins of power in Academy City completely. Yet in these espionage arcs we have the managing board members conducting a civil war in Academy City, committing major damage to the city all over, destroying the cities reason for being as an academy of science (I can’t see many students wanting to stay in such a dangerous place to study somehow) and them and their minions out of control all over. Alastair also controls the city’s two police and para-military forces who are pretty powerful in their own right, yet they are basically no-where to be seen in these arcs. So my question is why doesn’t Alastair step in and stop the whole damn thing? He could but like other main characters, he had been pushed to the sidelines…

    1. I’m pretty much with you; these “Dark Side of Academy City” arcs are plagued by too many players (I’ve had to visit the Wiki more times than I’d like), too many motivations, and too much mindless action.

      While I personally love the punk, Accelerator is not enough to anchor everything. I kinda get why they’re leaving Misaka out of this (she’s just a high schooler on the “light side”; it’s a huge city; I can see all this happening under her nose) but her absence still holds me back from being that invested.

      Watching Hamazura Shiage muddle through has its charm, but the bottom line is that he, Kinuhata, and Kuritsubo are a poor substitute to Touma, Index, and Itsuwa.

      You are right: I can’t shake the feeling that we’re counting time here, as none of the stakes in the city are anything like Touma’s UK mission, and the glaring plot hole that someone of Crowley’s means could deal with all of this rather easily further undermines the arc.

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