A Certain Scientific Railgun S – 24 (Logic? Who needs it! Just play more Railgun music!)

Toaru Kagaku no Railgun S Episode 24 final episode
とある科学の超電磁砲(レールガン)S
To Aru Kagaku no Railgun S finale

SPOILER Summary/Synopsis:

Shinobu wonders if she’s done the right thing while the members of STUDY are amused at the few party crashers they see (Mikoto’s friends). That amusement turns to shock when they discover that these few girls are backed by large numbers of Judgement members. However, since Janie’s output is only at 2%, they order Shinobu to increase that output. As they look for Mikoto, she shows up at their doorstep in the stadium where they have set up their base. Aritomi reveals himself on the Jumbotron and displays a defeated Shinobu before sending power suits after Mikoto. Aritomi tells her espers main weakness is that eventually they get tired. Mikoto agrees, but cites how she’s not alone before blasting her way through the power suits.

Aritomi activates their B7 plan, jamming all communications, and having STUDY members go in with armed, military grade mecha power suits, each one with weapons based on Shizuri’s Meltdowner power.They begin attacking the various groups stopping the power suits while some are dispatched to stop Mikoto. To the shock of Aritomi, Mikoto easily deflects the mecha’s Meltdowner blasts while elsewhere, Judgement is using telepaths to keep lines of communication open. Yomikawa arrives in a large vehicle, which is actually a transforming, mecha power suit, which Uiharu and Saten pilot, having studied to do so the night before. Mitsuko says this is from her father’s company, the name of the unit being Ekaterina II S. With that, Saten and Uiharu begin battling STUDY mecha units.

Meanwhile, an irritated Shizuri arrives at the stadium, using the real Meltdowner power against the STUDY units while the other members of ITEM casually stroll in. Shizuri decides to unleash and vent her anger at being used, purposefully allowing Mikoto to escape with Febri. Mikoto arrives where Aritomi and two other STUDY members are left as well as the captive Shinobu. Aritomi sets off Final Phase, which would cause the destruction of Academy City. He tries to commit suicide with a gun, but Mikoto stops that, injuring her hand in the process. After giving him a lecture, she demands to know how to top it. The female STUDY member says it isn’t possible for Mikoto to do it alone. Mikoto agrees, then updates her comrades on the situation.

The Sisters report in to help deflect this missile from space that Aritomi has unleashed on the city. Saten arrives with a new batch of lollipops for Febri after Aritomi reveals their location. Mikoto and Kuroko get into Ekaterina II S and are launched into the air by Mitsuko’s Areo Hand power. Shinobu is frustrated at the slow computing speed to counter the missile, but a call from Misaka-19090 (and a hack from the Sisters) fixes all that. With Ekaterina II S in the upper atmosphere, Kuroko teleports them out of what’s left of the unit, then falls back, allowing Mikoto, aided by the Sisters, to target the missile before using Railgun to blast it forward, into the path of the missile, destroying it. Kuroko     safely gets them to the ground as Janie wakes up.

Afterwards, the Academic Assembly goes forward as planned while Mikoto and company get a much earned rest. Later, at a small airport, Saten and Uiharu cry over parting with Febri while Kuroko gives Janie a four leaf clover, which she and Mikoto had with them when they stopped STUDY’s missile. Mikoto talks with Shinobu, expressing her sadness that Shinobu and the girls have to go overseas to have Febri and Janie examined and readjusted. Shinobu speaks of how records of the incident put them in a good light, implying she knows Mikoto did that, but she also thinks people’s memories have been altered. With that, the trio take off on a Kongou Airlines jet.

Thoughts/Review:

Whenever an anime episode plays the “pump up” music in the background as things are happening, especially if it is for almost the entire episode, it means that the production team are desperate to try to try to fire up the audience’s emotions.  In my experience, that’s usually because they know they have weak content and need to cover for that.  That’s what we had here, but it wasn’t all bad.

I didn’t like the “magical” appearance of Judgement in this episode.  After setting up this “against all odds” element, whereby the various female teams (such as Saten and Uiharu) squared off against the incoming power suits, suddenly, dozens of members of Judgement are at each team’s location.  Not only that, but even STUDY were unaware of them until they were suddenly there. Crappy, but hey, listen to the Railgun music blasting in the background and get PUMPED UP! (Oh, and buy the CD too!)

Now that Judgement is on the scene to create an action-filled moment, they are relegated to hiding behind large, metal shields and using physical force to stop the power suits from advancing. Yeah, because an esper organization like Judgement would never think to use their powers, right? Heck now. Esper powers are for losers. That’s what big shields and big metal prongy sticks are for. Yeah!

Oh wait, I’m sorry. ONE member of Judgement did use her powers, that being Kuroko. I suppose even J.C. Staff realized that having Kuroko use a shield rather than her teleport ability would be too much.

So now that we have this laughable case of Judgement not pulling their weight, and Saten using a baseball bat on armored power suits (’cause we all know the power of an unenhanced baseball bat).

Ah, but then Mitsuko comes on the scene with her, “my mech is cooler than your mech ’cause mine transforms” moment. Suddenly, Saten and Uiharu are in this and expertly piloting this large, mecha power suit.  Since Saten read the operators manual the night before, that’s supposed to give her the knowledge she needs to operate a military grade mecha unit.

BWAH!HA!HA!HA!HA!ha!ha!ha!ha!ha! Stop it, you’re killing me!  OK, I’ve give you credit for doing a Gundam reference with Saten playing the role of Amuro, only without the Newtype abilities.

And how about them STUDY power suits, eh? Good thing they weren’t armed with guns.  I guess those were just reserved for the mecha units that STUDY members piloted. We get a weak explanation of why STUDY was so interested in Shizuri, but no explanation on how they were able to recreate her power, if only on a smaller scale. But hey, we have PUMP UP MUSIC playing!  Oorah!

Well, what about Railgun? How’s old Mikoto doing? Naturally, she’s going to kick bottom when push comes to shove, but having ITEM show up so that Mikoto can run to the next base? Weak. All I thought was, “So who was it that told ITEM about this little power suit party?” Ah, but I forget; the purpose of this episode is to cram as many cameos in as possible. PUMP UP THE MUSIC!

Aritomi’s scorched earth maneuver wasn’t unexpected, but his turning into some impotent thing after Mikoto prevented him from putting a bullet into his brain pan made me cringe. As Mikoto lectured Aritomi, I thought, “if this were me, and I didn’t care about my own life, I’d slap the crap out of Mikoto just to shut her up.”  Seriously, J.C. Staff gave Mikoto a few Touma moments with her mouth spewing crap to bad people to try to make a case with them. *_*

While on the negative subject of Mikoto, what was that with her apparently going to Misaki and getting a favor to have a lot of people’s memories wiped. I’ll need to reread the last volume of Railgun that Seven Seas released (I’ve not read beyond what Seven Seas has put out), but the whole premise being set up there is that Misaki is working against Mikoto. Even if Misaki is on Mikoto’s side somehow, Mikoto expressed outrage that Misaki would use her powers to manipulate so many minds, yet I’m to believe that in the anime, Mikoto has no problem asking Misaki to do just that.

And can someone tell me WHY Misaki would acquiesce to a request from Mikoto to wipe the memories of who knows how many folks? I can’t see what Mikoto would offer Misaki that would even remotely make Misaki want to do Mikoto a favor.

Which reminds me, isn’t it ever so fortunate that Saten was able to get a mystical communication from Aritomi to locate a stash of lollipops for Febri and get them to her just in the nick of time? Not that I wanted to see harm come to Febri, but still.

That’s not to say that this episode was all a big load of dung. Starting off the good stuff, I loved the little chat Misaka-19090 had with Shinobu. In the original manga and in the anime adaptation, when Shinobu’s attempt to upload emotions into the Misaka Network failed, I (and many others) felt that the upload was rejected by Misaka-20001, aka: Last Order. However, Misaka-19090 revealed that she was the one who rejected the upload since it didn’t come from Last Order. I went back to the manga and looked at the error message, and it did make sense that this was coming from Misaka-19090.  So coolio there.

I did like the sneak peak of sorts at Wannai and Awatsuki doing their esper tag team effort. For the next anime series, assuming it covers the Daihasei Festival Arc.

I really liked Mitsuko going full out on her Areo Hand ability when she launched Ekaterina II S with it.

And finally, I do like how we are given a proper send off of Shinobu to some foreign country with Febri and Janie, thus explaining her absence in the manga from here on out.

In the end, this episode abandons logic in favor of artificially pumped emotional responses, meaning it is weak as all get out when it comes to story. However, it does contain some nifty elements making it not a total loss.

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12 Responses to “A Certain Scientific Railgun S – 24 (Logic? Who needs it! Just play more Railgun music!)”

  1. Anonymous says:

    Personally I didn’t mind most of the things you disliked in the finale, Judgement not really using powers is relatively easy to handwave as they could have powers that are not combat effective like the Glasses wearing Mii. Besides although I haven’t read the light novels myself I have heard that they do have many more nonsensical things happening.

    I will say that I did laugh at Saten with the baseball bat as it reminded me of this scene from Classic Doctor Who: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtUMnn0-4zw

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >Personally I didn’t mind most of the things you disliked in the finale, Judgement not really using powers is relatively easy to handwave as they could have powers that are not combat effective like the Glasses wearing Mii.

      Had they shown some Judgement members using powers and others having to use the staves and shields, I’d have been OK. But, I can’t believe that with that many Judgement members, there were no other epsers with no physical, offensive capability.

      >I will say that I did laugh at Saten with the baseball bat as it reminded me of this scene from Classic Doctor Who: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dtUMnn0-4zw

      *LOL* You know, without even clicking the link, I knew exactly what you were talking about. ^_^ At least there, Ace’s bat had been enhanced by Galifrey technology, thanks to the Doctor.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, it’s a bit off that they don’t have any pyrokinetics, or low power electromasters, but I guess maybe they were pushing the animation budget as it was?

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      Well, that’s probably the real story, eh? ^_^;;;

  2. Anonymous says:

    On the Meltdowner(New Testament spoilers):
    Gung’f gur SVIR-BIRE ybtb gurl tbg gurer, n frevrf bs zrpunavpny zrnaf gb pbcl gur yriry 5 novyvgvrf ba ebobgf. V’z abg fher jurer FGHQL tbg gurve unaqf ba vg(fvapr vg’f rkgerzryl gbc frperg), ohg gura gurl znantrq gb fzhttyr n zvffvyr naq na nezl bs ebobgf. Gur SVIR-BIRE ebobgf pna hfr cfrhqb-zrpunavpny zrnaf gb pbcl fcrpvsvp vafgnaprf bs yriry 5 cbjref, ohg abg gur oebnq nccyvpngvbaf bs vg. Gur abiryf uvag gung SVIR-BIRE grpuabybtl eryvrf ba gur rfcre gurl vzvgngr. Vg gncf vagb gurve NVZ cnggreaf gb pbcl gur fghss. Fb guvax bs vg nf ebobg jvmneqf pnfgvat fcryyf onfrq bss gur nggevohgrf bs yriry 5f, engure guna zlgubybtvpny/eryvtvbhf svtherf.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I agree with most of the things you said. Actually, the only thing that I disagree is what was said in the first comment: it’s not like every (or even most) students have abilities that would be useful in a battle (I have this vague memory that telepathy and sight-related powers might be among the most usual ones), so using metal rods and shields actually makes kind of sense there. However, other than that, the existence of the other Judgement members in this episode was really stupid =/

    When the Ekaterina something-mecha arrived, I though that it was ridiculous enough to be funny. Also because the only character in railgun I actually could imagine doing something like that is Mitsuko.
    When Shokuhou was mentioned, I was already at “yeah, whatever, I guess anything goes by this point” level of opinion =/

    Easily the best things were Mitsuko, Wannai and Awatsuki.
    And the closure Shinobu finally got was nice. She deserved that ^^
    Though now I have my fingers crossed that the manga doesn’t decide to retcon the anime (can it even happen in that direction), and bring her back in some form…

    BTW, as for who told ITEM about this, my headcannon is that Dr. Gekota somehow did that. That was the idea I had some episodes back anyways.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      >However, other than that, the existence of the other Judgement members in this episode was really stupid =/

      If they’d shown a few Judgement members having some sort of offensive ability, then I wouldn’t have had a problem with the scene other than Judgement’s magical appearance. ^_^;

      >Easily the best things were Mitsuko, Wannai and Awatsuki.

      Yeppers. Based on this, I wouldn’t mind seeing Mitsuko get elevated to level 5 at some point.

      >And the closure Shinobu finally got was nice. She deserved that ^^
      >Though now I have my fingers crossed that the manga doesn’t decide to retcon the anime (can it even happen in that direction), and bring her back in some form…

      I have a feeling that won’t happen. I say this because the first anime series had the whole followup on the Level Upper arc, revealing what happened to Kiyama’s students (like Banri). Later, the manga had a splash page with Banri (I think) in it in her middle school uniform. I’ll have to check the manga when I get home.

      >BTW, as for who told ITEM about this, my headcannon is that Dr. Gekota somehow did that. That was the idea I had some episodes back anyways.

      Hmmmm. Well, it will be one of those mysteries I guess ^_^;

    • Anonymous says:

      ITEM was running their own independent investigation ever since a robot managed to give Mugino a scratch. So their appearance isn’t entirely mysterious, just well timed.

    • AstroNerdBoy says:

      I didn’t remember them doing an investigation, but I may have missed it. ^_^;

  4. Anonymous says:

    Misaka was running into them while she was investigating and they weren’t on a job at the time either. So presumably they were looking into whoever had the sheer gall to jerk THE Meltdowner around on a chain.

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