A Certain Scientific Railgun S – 12

Toaru Kagaku no Railgun S Episode 12
とある科学の超電磁砲(レールガン)S
To Aru Kagaku no Railgun S

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Mikoto recalls her childhood, when her mother was able to repair her damaged frog plushie, making everything better. Since there’s no one to make her current situation better, the following morning, she’s tolerant of Kuroko’s affections and tells her that she’s going out, but today’s the last day. Mikoto’s target is Tree Diagram, which is the super computer currently housed in the Orihime-1 satellite, officially used to predict the weather, but unofficially used to track and predict projects coming out of Academy City. It was Tree Diagram that came up with the plan to have Accelerator kill 20,000 of the Sisters in order to become a level 6 esper.

Touma shows up, calling Mikoto “Biribiri” as usual, but considering what she’s planning, she lets him get away with it. She’s surprised when she learns that one of the Sisters was in contact with him after she left him the day before. Touma changes subjects to talk about the blimp with the weather on it, which Mikoto hates, since it indicates humans living under the control of a computer, which she plans to destroy. Mikoto leaves, so Touma continues on his way, soon encountering one of the Sisters. This Misaka Imouto is with a kitten in a box. During their discussion, Misaka Imouto explains why she can’t feed it and why Touma should take care of the kitten. Touma decides to take the kitten after all is said and done.

Misaka Imouto recalls her (or one of her clone sisters) comments to her handlers prior to going out against Accelerator about how they’d feel if they met a clone of themselves. As such, she starts to understand Mikoto’s negativity toward the clones. Meanwhile, Mikoto is on a tour bus to the place where Tree Diagram research is done. After getting into the secured areas, she plans to plant a false prediction from Tree Diagram into the facility’s database, citing an fatal error due to Accelerator encountering Railgun, whereby the researchers would panic, demanding a new simulation from Tree Diagram, buying Mikoto time she needs to destroy it.

Misaka-10032 and Touma head into the city, talking about the kitten. Touma surprises Misaka-10032 by not going home. He goes to a bookstore for reference materials on kittens. He leaves the kitten in Misaka-10032’s care as he enters the bookstore. Meanwhile, Accelerator is in one of the alleyways when he encounters some thugs working a man over for his wallet. Accelerator kills all but one when he notices Misaka-10032 and realizes it is nearly time for the next experiment. Misaka-10031 shows up for the experiment, causing Accelerator to show a bit of annoyance at the confusion of keeping up with the clones. She apologizes, which he doesn’t want to hear since he’s going to kill her.

They leave and Misaka-10032 gets orders regarding the current experiment via the Misaka Network. So she has to leave the kitten and some bread outside the bookstore to carry out her orders. Elsewhere, Mikoto has infiltrated the Tree Diagram command center, surprised by the large display of guards outside the building, but the lack of people inside it. She is able to determine that no one has been in this room for a long time despite the fact that the monitors and computers are all still active. She hacks in and is surprised to learn that none of the requests to Tree Diagram are being processed. Further investigation shows her that Tree Diagram has been destroyed by an unknown force.

Thoughts/Review:

This episode was adapted from the last half of chapter 32 and all of chapter 33 of volume 6 of the original manga.

Changes include the addition of Touma’s encounter with Misaka Imouto and the kitten (there was only a single panel in the manga to indicate this when Accelerator is bullying some thugs and notices one of the Sisters with Touma).

Although I didn’t really have the time, I did take a moment to take a peek at A Certain Magical Index episode 10, where the tale of Misaka Imouto, Touma, and the kitten was told. Again, there are some tonal differences in how the story is told as well as some other things. The tone of Railgun S is much darker since we’ve a greater understanding of the evils of the Level 6 Shift project while Index was lighter, since the darkness was only touched on. Thankfully, they did keep Misaka-10032’s joke about naming the cat “Inu” (dog), as well has her own special laugh because of it.

I haven’t commented on this before, but the Sister’s eyes in the Index anime are different from Mikoto’s so as to easily tell they are clones without seeing the goggles whereas in this Railgun series, their eyes are identical to Mikoto’s. That’s how it should be since they clones shouldn’t have different eyes.

Still, I like that the Touma/Misaka-10032 story is being told here. The manga, pressing forward due to the constraints of the format, just skips this, expecting readers will already know from the Index novels or anime. The anime is taking the time to retell that story from Index, thus giving what’s to come more impact for the audience.

Another thing the anime did better was have the context of Accelerator encountering both Misaka-10031 and Misaka-10032.  I believe volume 5 of the manga had to have a joke comic strip to explain this since the main manga story left things rather confusing. Well, with 20,000 clones, it is easy to get confused. ^_~

I had to go back and see what destroyed Orehime-1 satellite and the Tree Diagram computer housed therein. The manga never stated, and I remember it was destroyed in the Index anime. I won’t say more here as there should be a bit more about the computer in the next episode.  I’m curious to see if this anime will show why it was destroyed.

One thing that the story is taking license with is having the command center for Tree Diagram be unmanned but still having monitors on and active. I mean, if you are going to turn the command center lights out, you’d turn off the monitors as well as they wouldn’t be needed for access.  But, that’s just a nitpick from an IT bozo. ^_~

In the end, this was an enjoyable episode, incorporating more of the Index elements to give a complete picture of the Sisters arc. I like it.

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