To Aru Majutsu no Index

Title:To Aru Majutsu no Index
A Certain Magical Index
To Aru Majutsu no Indekkusu
Keywords: , , , , , , , ,
Notables: Animation - JC Staff
Toma Kamijo is your typical ordinary high school student. Terrible with grades, ranked lowest in a school full of psychics, Toma has a secret weapon in his right hand. Imbued with 'incredible bad luck', his right hand has the power to stop any psychic attack or even "God's Blessing". One morning he finds a 'nun' hanging from his balcony where she fell after jumping the roof. She introduces herself as 'Index' and says that people are after her who want the 103,000 volumes of magic she knows. He refutes that, saying there is no Magic, and only Science. That night, when he comes home from school, he finds Index in front of his room with blood on the ground, and at that moment he is attacked by a man who wields fire with some other force than science.

Series aired October '08 thru March '09.
24 TV episodes (~24min each).

The Various Story Arcs are ...
  • Ep 01–06: Touma, two magicians and Index’s curse.
  • Ep 07–09: The Alchemist and ‘Deep Blood’.
  • Ep 10–14: The ‘Railgun’s’ many sisters and the Accelerator.
  • Ep 15–17: Touma’s parents and ‘Angel Fall’.
  • Ep 18: A Date and an Aztec menace.
  • Ep 19–20: MISAKA 20,001 and the Accelerator
  • Ep 21-24: The key of the imaginary number and the angry magician.

3min Promo Trailer - YouTube Video
[edit] The ↗To Aru franchise:

Main story: Railgun spin-off:
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Watch 9 9 8 7 6 6 Ggultra2764 [series:1850#1552]
A Certain Magical Index seemed to have a potential premise in its mixed focus on science with ESPers and religious magics. Unfortunately, the series didn't seem to be sure what exactly it wanted to do with its plot and characters. At first glance with the show's first several episodes, the show seemed focused on Touma having to protect Index from other magicians desiring the magic knowledge within her. But six episodes later, another plot arc develops and Index being the prominent character in the past six episodes gets reduced to a secondary, comic relief role status for the remainder of the series with Touma given major status. This is pretty much how the show runs throughout all its 24 episodes. The show is scattered into a number of arcs with the majority of them focused on Touma helping to resolve a crisis revolving around the worlds of magic or science. Many characters tend to have a bad habit of coming and going throughout the show as once the prominent characters within an arc have their situations resolved, they either get reduced in their roles for the later arcs (Himegami and Index), vanish abruptly until a later arc (Kaori and Accelerator) or they are just gone all together (the Misaka clones) and not heard from for the rest of the series. Index having her role reduced in later arcs had me questioning the point of the show's title and wondering if it should have just been called "A Certain Imagine Breaker" considering the greater focus on Touma than on Index. Because of the way in which the show goes about with its style of plotting, a good number of characters, despite how cool they seem from their abilities and personalities, lack a good amount of depth and background. Plus, the plot isn't really advancing at all as no major baddie is seeking out Index for her grimoires and the later episodes hint to a bigger situation and details on the fate of a certain character that the series doesn't look into or resolve (hinting to the upcoming second season). The show's attempts at humor were very hit or miss as having the same gag of Touma being bitten by Index for seeing her in some form of undress or annoying her got old quick and Mikoto's touchy-feely admirer was a big turnoff for me.

I don't think I'll be seeing any more of Magical Index anytime soon. While the visuals are above average with some moments of fluid animation and detailed scenery mixed with CG animation, the use of plot arcs really put a hamper on the development and appearance of many of the major plot elements and characters.

Last updated Friday, August 20 2010. Created Friday, August 20 2010.
Rent 8 9 8 7 8 8 Dreamer [series:1850#2279]
This series had serious potential but the lack of a real plot was a disappointment. However, it's still a good series worth checking out.

Art, Animation & Character Designs
Artwork and animation seemed above average. At times the artwork was really good with vibrant colors and scenes. Character designs were inbetween uber cute and the average norm. Still good.

The OP was cool sounding techno piece with female vocals. Was pretty good but it didn't seem like it fit with the series. The second OP was a techo-alternative piece that wasn't bad either. As for the the rest of the soundtrack, just some basic, typical pieces and nothing really noting.

Series and Episode Story
The first thing I should mention is some pretty cool fight scene effects.... or rather some of the fights scenes in themselves. Although they weren't anything really spectacular, they were choreographed well and had some nice effects. As for the feel of the series, it tried to be cute at times with kawaii characters.... namely "sensai" and "Index", and at times it "tried" to be funny but failed at that. As for the plot, there really wasn't one to speak of. It seemed that there was some form of plot or some semblance of one slowly developing throughout the series, but by the end, it didn't really develop. However, it seem to throw out the idea that it would continue on. New series perhaps?

Although a lot of the characters seemed rather cool, unfortunately, none of them were given any type of background. They left as quickly as they came and it's a shame because some of them were quite frankly interesting. There were lots of cliff hangers as well (another reason why there could be another series do).

Overall, it's a good series that had me watching episode after episode. The end didn't do it for me and left me wanting more.... in terms of answering a bunch of unanswered questions. Still worth a rent.

Last updated Monday, February 22 2010. Created Monday, February 22 2010.
Rent 9 9 9 7 8 9 Silence [series:1850#2939]

To Aru Majutsu no Index has probably one of the best opening episodes I have seen. Its carefully crafted backdrop of the conflict between science and religion is really original and interesting. Together with the intensity of the first arc, it surely knows how to grab onto my attention. Very importantly, it somewhat sets parameters for the powers of the characters, especially Touma, as we get to appreciate the deficiencies of his curse. This is significant for fantasy action series as this increases the plausibility of incredible feats.

The arc of Deep Blood is interesting as well, and does not lack in intensity at all. Though I am still sceptical about how he overcame ars magna, the whole concept of it is really good. By this time, Touma has lost both his memory and an arm, it is hard not to cringe at his pain. This part establishes realism, and we can see that our hero is really just a human who can get hurt.

MISAKA arc is another piece of work. However, by this time, the certainty that Touma will pull through (by himself) is beginning to set in, together with tedium. His ideal, "let's save everyone" is painfully reminscent of Shirou. This naivete is beginning to annoy me instead. By the time the angel fall arc came about, I started to feel bored, and felt the urge to fast forward at certain moments, which is not a good sign at all. Though I have to say, Accelerator's two episodes are really pretty good, showing another side to him we did not know.

The final Hyoko arc starts to reek of tedium. Traditional flaws of action flicks start to set in, like the villain explaining his/her motive to our hero. The initial excitement is no where to be found, and the series ended on a weak note.

What was an original and fun series became tedious and boring. The pattern is repeated way too many times through the arcs, and it is bound to be trite in the end. It would have been better if they cut down on the unnecessary arcs, like angel's fall and Hyoko, and get on with the actual story, cos we all know by the end there is some sort of conspiracy going on. Also, the girls Touma collected should have played a much larger role. Instead of our lone wolf running around saving the world, he should have cooperated with his very strong harem.

A good concept to be sure, but it is over-used through the 24 episodes, without much progress on the story. Could be better. Hoping for a better sequel though.

Last updated Monday, November 09 2009. Created Sunday, November 08 2009.
Rent 9 9 8 8 6 10 Devil Doll [series:1850#752]
[Score: 80% = "Rent+", almost the same rating as Zero no Tsukaima and actually quite similar (only with fewer titty scenes).]

This story is as much about Index as Shin Seiki Evangelion is about Ayanami Rei. Religion/Magic meets SciFi/ESP, flip-flopping between political drama and hilarious comedy, less serious than Silent Mobius, less embarrassing than Full Metal Panic, more action-packed than Aa! Megami-sama! TV, more violent than Kanon (2006).

Great cliffhangers and lots of surprises, most notably about people not being what they appear to be; then again, this show relies a lot on all characters being quirky super humans, many of which are great sidekicks (Kaori, Deep Blood, Misaka, MISAKA) whereas the leads are weaker (Touma, the Cosmic Zap on two legs, takes unlimited damage and acts too super-heroic because of this; Index became too giggly after the first arc), the villains talkative, the battles repetitive, the tech-talk very catholic (sic!). Perhaps the main weakness of this show is that the arcs are only loosely connected and the story isn't really going anywhere despite its great premise (again, similar to Zero no Tsukaima in this aspect).

Strong first OP song (techno-pop), very good visualization; too bad it's covering just the first six of 20+ light novels (Spoilers!) to date and will require at least one sequel. This is fun to watch, and if you like it, read the Others tetralogy for a more serious approach to this kind of scenario.

Last updated Monday, July 11 2011. Created Wednesday, October 07 2009.
Buy Jan-Chan [series:1850#967]
Did I really give this series a BUY rating? … actually it is a RENT+/BUY-, but the only reason it is not a outright BUY is that the story of Touma, his ‘Image Breaker’ and his ‘harem’ was not finished. This story needs to be continued (probably for another 24+ episodes) to answer all of my questions.

But to JC Staff’s credit, at least they did not try to chop up the story and burn off the last few episodes to try to tie-off this series. As in many anime series based on a manga story, the manga continues far beyond the series. So I can easily accept an open ended series – with the understanding that if I want to learn more, then I will have to either read the manga or hope that another season will be released.

Based on a fantasy novel by KAMACHI Kazuma that spans some 17 volumes and five+ manga books, JC Staff adapted the first 20+ chapters of the manga series into 24 episodes for their anime story. And since the manga series is still being released, let’s hope that another anime season might be in the works.

And since the animation is done by JC Staff, you can expect that both Forbin and I will be interested. We happen to like the quality of their releases! The projects that they get involved with all have strong stories and plots, the quality of their animation is top notch and the results of their efforts are almost always noteworthy.

Set in a different world, polarized not by politics but rather by philosophical techniques; scientists use their technical skills to study the strange and incredible powers of ↗psionics. In opposition to them are the numerous religious churches and cults, who call on the mystical and magical powers of their beliefs to enforce their priorities and agendas. An uneasy balance exists between these two opposing belief (and power) systems. And standing between these two forces is Touma Kamijo, a young man living in the scientific village of ‘Gakuen Toshi’ (or Academy City). With a PSI rating of ‘ZERO’, Touma is ‘cursed’ with an ability that allows him to cancel any PSI or magic influence, but at the expense of his own good fortune. As amazing as his ability might appear, it is purely passive (or defensive) – with the touch of his right hand, he can dispel the effects of psionic, religious or magical spells/attacks. But Touma is someone who can step beyond his misfortune and will always try to do the right thing in protecting those around him – which usually means a cute young lady……

With good animation and interesting characters, this fast moving story is a fun watch. Some might consider this to be an acquired taste or perhaps a shounen adventure story, but I have no hesitations in giving this series a few thumbs-up!

If you have seen and enjoyed the following fun series, then you probably would also enjoy these titles...

Last updated Sunday, July 11 2010. Created Tuesday, May 05 2009.
Rent 9 9 9 8 6 8 chibi [series:1850#2380]
Top-notch art, animation, and character designs. The characters are all strong and likeable, but, in the end, there was no common thread to tie the series together. I never did get a clue what it was about Toma that made him put so much of himself into his battles with espers and magicians -- for a while I thought I did with his relationship with Index, but then they wiped his memory and reset the game, and it didn't have much meaning after that aside from his unexplained affinity for collecting strange girls. The mish-mash of magical and ESP technology and the frequent Toma soliloquy on top of it didn't help. Still, I looked forward to each episode, but it was more of a set of short action stories than the unified series that would have made it memorable. There are intimations at the end of further seasons. I don't see that happening, but I wouldn't be surprised to see an OVA or two come out of it.

Last updated Tuesday, March 24 2009. Created Saturday, November 08 2008.
Unevaluated Stretch [series:1850#628]
(Three episodes watched):

At first glance this show seemed like it had some originality; it was also a little difficult getting a grip on what people can and can't do in this fictional city of the not-too-distant-future. Relatively witty dialogue seemed a plus, too. It was also amusing, but the cliffhanger it ended with left me wondering if this would be comical or tragic after all. Whereas episode one seemed kind of fun and silly, episode two changed radically into a sort of magical combat series. Episode three sort of reverted to the original premise, but the hints are that four will be fighting yet again. This is kind of boring to me; I'm not a big fan of magic, and the good magic versus evil magic premise seems simplistic. The characters and plot don't seem particularly unusual or intriguing. The fight in episode two had some fairly clever tactics but dragged on for much too long. It seems like even numbered episodes will involve magical combat but I would much rather get either humor or intrigue--it's taking too long to explain what exactly is going on, or at least hasn't shown signs of being truly interesting. As a result, I find myself dreading having to watch more episodes. I think I'll shelve Index for the time being, but continue to download the episodes and save them for some time when I'm experiencing a shortage of truly outstanding series.

Last updated Tuesday, October 28 2008. Created Thursday, October 09 2008.
Unevaluated Forbin [series:1850#1573]
First Look:

JC Staff! Well ok that's a guarantee Forbin watch.

Not a bad little shounen. Kamijo's power is neat but has a bad side effect.

1st Arc - Index's Memory 2nd Arc - Deep Blood 3rd Arc - Accelerator Saga.

It's in the Accelerator Saga and it's getting very strange. Lots of conspiracy theories

Now that's done and we are starting an arc involving his father. Accelerator dressed up as Index was priceless!

Last updated Thursday, January 29 2009. Created Monday, October 06 2008.

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