Under the circumstances Niko could have come up with a more sensitive gift than that – but it’s the thought that counts, I guess.
Episode 12 of Accel World was quite entertaining, but there really isn’t a whole lot to say about it that it didn’t say for itself. It was mostly the conclusion of the battle with Chrome Disaster, which as always with this series was beautifully animated and nicely choreographed by the fine folks at Sunrise. The action quotient of these last two eps has definitely been a huge ramp-up for the series, and thoroughly enjoyable, but I hope it doesn’t become the new normal – I think it would get a bit monotonous after a while. It’s the subtler aspects of Brain Burst that interest me, but the encouraging thing is that they weren’t ignored this week either.
Yellow Radio seems to have survived being impaled by Chrome Disaster, which I guess must be a function of his high level. He took the Brave Sir Robin route and bravely ran away, taking the remnants of his hit squad and leaving Niko, Haru and Kuroyukihime to deal with the berserker. Interestingly, for the second time in this battle Snow Black got herself incapacitated. Naturally Niko and Haru didn’t get killed or anything, but we did get a little eminence front from Niko where she tried to pretend the whole alliance meant nothing to her, and Haru stepping up to do the big damage against Cherry Rook before letting Niko land the final blow against her mentor. We also got a look at the transition of the unlimited burst zone, from a futuristic Ikebukuro cityscape to a Xanadu-like natural paradise. And Silver Crow seems to have picked up a hitchhiker, and a hungry one at that – perhaps some fragment of the cursed armor that survived? I can’t imagine it’s a good thing.
The most interesting part of the ep for me was the discussion of Niko and the role her Cherry Rook played in her RL. A fellow orphan at a home for troubled children, the one who introduced her to Brain Burst, the friend whom she bypassed and insensitively left behind without thinking of what that did to his psyche. The implications of this game on RL are a component of this story I’d like to explore deeper – the extent to which Linkers use it as a pure escape from their lives, and the way the RL relationship changes for Linkers who know each other outside the Accelerated World. As for Niko she definitely showed her dere side there at the end, maneuvering herself back into Haru’s apartment, thanking him and giving him cookies (I’d have gone with celery sticks). She’s definitely a bundle of clichés, this girl, but I still find her immensely entertaining. If you ask me a few weeks I might feel differently of course…