A Certain Scientific Railgun 01: The ELECTROM@STEROctober 6, 2009
Whereas A Certain Magical Index depicts the many misfortunes and sufferings of Touma Kamijou, A Certain Scientific Railgun, a spinoff series, is based on the everyday occurrences of Mikoto Misaka’s school life. The two series occur in parallel, sometimes even intertwining with one another. Shortly after the animated adaption of Index ended its initial broadcast, an animation project for Railgun was announced — and, well, here it is.
Somewhere in the technologically superior district of Academy City, a group of notorious young men gang up on a middle school girl, who seems to be rather unconcerned with the situation she finds herself in.
A couple of scenes later, we find one of the thugs from earlier, running for his life; clearly panicking over something. He is suddenly handcuffed and bonded to a water pipe by a pigtailed girl, who literally appears out of nowhere. This girl proceeds to hunt down the rest of the suspects, only to find their unconscious bodies stacked in a pile at the end of the alleyway. The one responsible for apprehending them is none other than Mikoto Misaka, the girl who, ironically, was the one being harassed.
As it turns out, the two young ladies just happen to be roommates at Tokiwa Academy, a prestigious school for rich girls. Kuroko Shirai, the pigtailed girl from earlier is a member of JUDGEMENT, a security force composed mostly of students from Academy city. She warns Mikoto, being an ordinary civilian, not to do their job for them – no matter how skilled she is at using her powers.
In case you haven’t noticed, eighty percent of Academy City’s populace are students. Amongst these students, there are a great number of which whom, thanks to the advances in scientific fields, acquired superhuman abilities through alterations to the brain, . These superpowered teenagers are labeled as ESPers, and are a specialty found nowhere else in the world.
After vandalizing a vending machine with some very impressive moves, Mikoto is reminded of a “system scan” occurring at her school this very day. A “system scan” is a routinely checkup of the development of each individual students’ ESP powers. These powers range from the usual telepathy and telekinesis, to the more unusual teleportation and electromagnetic manipulation (they’re supposed to be ESPs, hey?).
While everyone else is minding their own business doing tests and stuff, a giant explosion takes place in the school’s swimming pool. Kuroko explains to a very shocked (hahaha) girl that the system scan for “Tokiwa’s Ace” is currently undergoing; apparently her powers are so great that they can’t be measured properly without using water to absorb the ensuing impact – Mikoto Misaka: one of the seven “LEVEL5 ESPers” of Academy City.
The scene shifts to a seemingly irrelevant flower-haired girl, who attends an unimportant middle school, and gets her skirt flipped by her insignificant friend, revealing her senselessly pink-and-blue panties. The two female students are Kazari Uiharu, and her friend Ruiko Saten; a LEVEL1 and LEVEL0, respectively. Their relevance is proved when Uiharu turns out to be Kuroko’s JUDGEMENT partner, who is supposed to introduce her to Mikoto today.
Meanwhile, Mikoto and Kuroko are peacefully enjoying themselves at a cafe. Kuroko informs her “big sis” of her plans to introduce Kazari Uiharu to her later this day. However, the ever-alert Electromaster unveils this to be a front for Kuroko’s insidious plot to conceive her into a sexual relationship between the two.
The two parties run into each other, and are acquainted. Despite the obvious alienation from Ruiko, Mikoto maintains a friendly attitude, surprising both her and Kazari. She then invites the two of them to go hang out with her and Kuroko. Mikoto, influenced by a flyer, (and possibly by a certain amphibian mascot character,) decides to head over to a crepe stand somewhere in the city. The crowd is enormous, and the lines are huge. To make things worse, they only have one hundred Gekota figurines to give out.
Much to Mikoto’s dismay, the stand gives their last Gekota figure away to Ruiko, who just happened to be lining up in front of her. Ruiko, taking pity on her, hands over the frog figure, to much gratitude from the tsundere-fangirl.
A bank nearby suddenly explodes, and a trio of thugs run out, carrying sacks of what would logically be cash. When confronted by Kuroko, the thugs chose to stick around and laugh, rather than making a quick break for it. The first man is easily defeated by Kuroko’s martial art skillz, while the second, despite his impressive display of pyrokinesis, is pinned to the ground by the lesbian teleporter’s metal rods.
In the confusion, the third thug tries to take a young boy as hostage to ensure his escape. This scene just happened to be witnessed by Ruiko, who decides to take action. Despite her lack of powers, Ruiko manages to prevent the boy from being taken, but she is awarded a kick to the face for her stubbornness. Mikoto, enraged by the actions of the third man, decides to step into the fray as well. The robber chooses to run them all over with a car, rather than getting away as fast as possible (again). But one quick shot from the invincible Electric Princess’ signature railgun sends him, and his car, soaring overhead.
With a cool flick of her hair, and standing unfazed by the crash of the car, Mikoto Misaka leaves the bystanders stunned (ahahaha) by her powers. The Anti-Skill (an organization much like the SWAT) eventually arrive to take the convicts away. As it turns out, the only civilian injured this time was Ruiko Saten, with a very sore cheek. Mikoto applauds her for her bravery in the face of danger, and the scene closes.
After the opening theme, “only my railgun” by fripside, plays, the episode comes to an end, which, incidentally, happens to mark the end of my post. See you next time! (maybe)