Ah at long last we finally have the sequel to To Aru Majutsu no Index with the second season. Though this first episode here was mostly for introductory purposes and to refresh everyone’s memories of who they are, and what they are capable of. Though there is still a good amount of action and a bit of plot development which will keep everyone happy.
We start off with Touma suffering his usual misfortune. It so happens that he only has one day left to finish his Summer homework, but because of everything that happened in the end of last season, he did not have any opportunity to finish it at all. On top of that Index isn’t being very helpful as she constantly pesters Touma to make her food and that she is bored, forcing Touma to take her out of the house and to a family restaurant.
Though in the end this turns out to be beneficial to him because lo and behold a magician is knocking on his door. But this time it is with a magically enchanted crossbow that tears apart Touma’s apartment. Though they are no longer there. Instead Touma and Index are waiting to be served at a restaurant while Touma tries to finish his work on time. Overall the story so far has been pretty much structure, though now it gets interesting.
After being doused in food thanks to a clumsy serving waitress, the very unlucky Touma finds his homework completely soaked in food and liquids, only to then see the magician outside the window. The window suddenly smashes in as wind lashes out and tears apart the table and everything on it until Touma uses his right hand to dispel the magical attack with his Imagine Breaker ability.
Quick explanation for everyone who hasn’t seen the series before, Touma has the ability to dispel any sort of magical, or technological ability that he can press his right hand against. This is one of his biggest secrets but also his greatest power as he uses this ability to fight those who only have known their powers as strength and are now weak that it has been disabled. This also is why Touma has been so very unlucky, or as he puts it, misfortunate. Because as Index explained during the first episode of season 1, his hand even dispels the luck any living being possesses as a gift of God.
But back with the episode. Touma looks outside only to discover the magician, named Yamisaka Ouka, is now magically behind him. Though Touma could care less about the man, as he noticed his homework is now in tiny little pieces. After a short speech of Touma more or less ripping into Ouka for being a nuisance, Ouka captures Index by turning invisible and running away. Thus leaving Touma to try and find Index before it could be to late, though the restaurant staff are far from happy with the mess they have been left with, much to Touma’s misfortune.
Turns out that the magician that has kidnapped Index did so because he requires knowledge from one of the 103,000 forbidden books stored within her mind. To access these books he has constructed a magic encahncing setup to allow himself to delve into her mind and read the knowledge from this book. Touma though does not know of the magicians simple request and instead believes she is in extreme danger. He searches around for her anxiously until he stumbles into his frenemy and fan favorite Misaka Mikoto, or BiriBiri.
A hilarious scene ensues where Misaka is extremely angry at Touma for constantly ditching her, and flashes back to the episode where Touma pretended to be her boyfriend and ended up protecting her from an evil magician, swearing that he would protect her with his life. This leads to Misaka becoming extremely flustered and perhaps in one of the biggest dere moments of her tsundere style she can barely think of what to say when Touma confronts her that he is very busy and has had a ton of things happen to him already, before ditching the poor girl again.
While this is happening Ouka has completed his spell and begins to find the book he needs within Index’s mind, only to have his body start tearing itself apart and bleeding all over the rooftop. Index warns him that if he continues to read the books then he will die, due to the fact that no human mind can withstand these forbidden books and he will kill himself if he continues. Thankfully though Touma shows up on the scene and quickly dispels the magical set up with one touch of his right hand, and unties Index from the ropes holding her.
Ouka fires a blast of cutting wind from his magical crossbow but it is no use against Touma as he dispels it immediately. Ready for the fight Touma braces himself, only to see Ouka collapse in exhaustion. As it turns out the reason that Ouka was looking at the forbidden books was to find a way to get rid of a curse on a woman that he loved, though he says she is a very boring woman. Touma gives him a speech whereas he explains that they both know what it feels like to be helpless to save someone and to relieve them of any suffering they have. Ouka then falls into unconsciousness, seemingly dead.
That is until Touma uses Index’s pet cat Sphinx to wake him up with a few scratches to the face. As Ouka rolls around in agony Touma explains that Ouka doesn’t need any of the forbidden books, instead all that is needed is that he touch her with his hand and dispel the curse that is killing her. Ouka breaks down into tears at this realization that she can be saved, and Touma promises that he will save her.
After the ending credits however, we see Kanzaki standing above a beachhead where knights are crawling out of the water, she quickly attacks and dispatches them. The last knight alive questions her if she knows who she attacked before dying. Tsuchimikado observes the battle but simply states that he is not there to stop her, but only there to spy for his superiors which are not revealed. This last bit sets up the storyline for what looks to be the Church of England having issues with Kanzaki, or someone related to her.
Overall I would have to say that J.C. Staff has definitely found their flagship show. The production values are simply amazing as the backgrounds are highly detailed and sustain the amazing look that they kept from the first series. Misaka has received a small addition to her character that has been brought over from the Railgun spinoff and both the opening and ending songs are very well done. With Mami Kawada returning to perform the opening song yet again, they are a delight to the ear without revealing too much about the show’s premise with just the opening scene. There is a little bit of a continuity problem between this first episode and last season, as this Arc takes place immediately after the fake date with Misaka in the Light Novels, so it will be interesting to see why they have made it so that the last two episodes of Season 1 have been passed over.