My Reaction To A Certain Magical Show
I wouldn’t like to approach this article the same way I do my regular reviews because that wouldn’t put across my point efficiently enough.
As Some of you guys may know, I recently completed watching a show called “A Certain Magical Index” after it came highly recommended by my twitter anime community. Naturally, I expected the show to be “amazing”… it was not, but that did not stop me from enjoying it a whole lot. “what exactly did you enjoy if it wasn’t amazing you ask?” Well in order to understand, you are going to need some insight as to what it is exactly I expecetd from the show and what I ended up getting in the end.
Index first came to my attention after a number of anibloggers enthusiastically blogged the second season of the series. The interesting thing was that half of the fandom thoroughly enjoyed the spin off series Railgun and the other half just wanted more regular Index. The thing that pushed me over the edge to watch the show though was the fact that Misaka Mikoto had won the ISML in 2011 and being the moe fanatic that I am, I just had to find out what it is exactly that made her the moe Queen that year.
I had also heard that Index loosely had some Christian/religious themes driving its action packed Seinin show which is something I thought was incredibly unique and right up my alley. Basically, I was expecting a show that had some really great action scenes with a deep thought provoking plot and some really cute moe characters.
My reaction to the 1st episode was very positive, I recall writing a very positive short article about it on Google+. The show managed to keep its momentum but started to falter once a couple more characters started to feature. Index is a weird show, its weird because its a crazy mish mash of Hardcore Seinin/ Shounen Action, Moe tropes, comedy and even some Ecchi.
The action usually gets way too over the top and most of the fight scenes are incredibly cliche and ‘samey.’ Kamijo Touma’s lines are so bad that you cant help but laugh at how ridiculous he sounds 90% of the time. Index and Kuroko’s antics get old and irritating pretty fast and the animation in some of the none action scenes is pretty dull.
Despite all this I couldn’t help but smile to myself as the show did its very best to pander to as many different tropes and themes that I enjoy. Did the teacher have to be an 11 year old cute girl? No but why not right? did Accelerator have to be so bloody and so much of a stereotypical bad ass (complete with the blonde hair)? No, but why not right? did Misaka have to be a fiesty Tsundere? No, not at all but why not either?
Basically the show was trying its best to please as many fandoms as it could and surprisingly I think it worked. I initially thought this show had the potential to be the next big thing once it hit the western shores but after watching it to completion I now understand that while it does have some mainstream appeal, (and it has that in spades) its main charm is in the little fanservice they dish out to the hardcore anime viewers that can actually get or tolerate the references and the jokes being made. Index is the ultimate Guilty Pleasure show and I certainly hope more shows like it are made.
Its very possible to botch up this formula though, take for example the laughing stock that was Guilty Crown. The legitimately good writing in Index is a major factor as to why the show just works. When the show decides to get philosophical and serious it pulls it off really well even after a crazy over the top action scene or shameless panty shot.
I highly recommend Index to any long time anime fan that for some reason has not yet seen it and for those who have seen it, tell what it is exactly that you enjoyed or hated in it. There’s definitely something for everyone in this one which is why its such a popular show.
Since this is my first article in months I decided to keep it short and to the point until I get back into my groove. The frequency of the article will get back to what it used to be and I may even have a podcast or two up within the next month so you guys can look forward to that. Thanks for the support 🙂