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Why A Certain Magical Index Fans Love Touma


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kinghumanity



Joined: 03 Nov 2014
Posts: 294
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:58 pm Reply with quote
My biggest problem with Touma isn’t the lecturing, or the harem, or the plot armor. It’s fhet the plot armor almost seems planned and expected.

“I’m going to go in and punch the villain who is super powerful and scary, and whose abilities I don’t know anything about, but don’t worry, everything will work in the end because the author says so.” -Touma

The same problem exists for Hamazura Shiage too. Except even worse. At least Toums has his right hand to fall back on.
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kotomikun



Joined: 06 May 2013
Posts: 546
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:39 pm Reply with quote
I don't know a huge amount about this series (pretty sure I only watched season 1, a long time ago) and don't really have an opinion on whether he's a "good" or "bad" character... but I definitely wouldn't use the word "unconventional." Touma seems like an extremely conventional shonen hero; perhaps a bit exaggerated, but nothing out of the ordinary. The amnesia bit is a little odd, I guess. Besides that, though, "clueless upstart kid defeats much more powerful opponents using extreme adolescent-manliness, his unique type of superpower, and melodramatic speeching; between fights, has wacky awkward romance shenanigans" feels relatively standard.

Although, it seems the summary text for these articles isn't necessarily written by the author, and the article itself doesn't seem to claim Touma is an unusually weird character. So... I'm not sure who this comment is really for.
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killjoy_the



Joined: 30 May 2015
Posts: 1799
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 6:50 pm Reply with quote
For the longest time Touma wasn't on my 'favorite characters' list even though Index is one of my favorite novels and two characters were there for a long time, but he's there now. I love my spiky boy.

I think Volume 1 is actually a great introduction of everything Touma is and ones. He beats one character with a power he doesn't know with the help of Imagine Breaker (which only really managed to get him to a standstill) but the real blow is just using AC's technology. He gets beaten the crap out of by someone who's simply physically stronger than him, and gets incredibly mad that people are just settling for something that's bad instead of striving for what's good. His power is implied to be something more than it shows in there, as well.

I think some of the middle volumes kind of end up being a bit repetitive, causing people to get tired of his stuff. Basically from Volume 5 to 16 Touma becomes pretty much unbeatable, and though a lot of his 'fights' feature teamwork he gets the glory shot. His power is also on the least interesting side, since it's literally 'making so the creative esper/magic power turns into a fist fight' (and it's quite often one punch one kill too). Fights can get a little boring when it's always Touma tanking some damage, figuring out a power, and punching someone over and over. This gets immensely better as time goes on, powers get more interesting and he gets more into teamwork - so much that I think Hamazura's inclusion in the roster is partially because Touma really does lose the whole 'unlucky guy against all odds' vibe after all the shit he's been through and friends he makes.

I really agree with (and really like) the wild card bit of Touma's character. He will always want to save those he feels are being wronged, and though at first that makes enemies turn into allies the opposite also happens later on, and he can really mix up things (spoiler[The other protagonists are more tied to their girls as their 'team']). I'm quite a bit into the whole 'heroic' thing and it getting explored in-story, and Touma's role in that subject is one of my favorite aspects of the series, it getting explored with Aleister's manipulation(s), Styil and Kanzaki's respect for him, Accelerator's almost reverence for the dude and quite a bit later on spoiler[how he becomes an enemy of mankind and how the 'fabricated hero with a harem' plot point comes along]

BUT, most importantly, he's pretty moe



And he's also a feminist (note: mainly applies when it comes to being okay with punching women)


The franchise has fun with the memetic value of Touma as a character. I don't think I've seen another main character shorten his catchphrase while fighting an enemy before because he was bored

EDIT: Oh also thanks for the write-up frog! I really liked it, and am glad you enjoyed Index more as it went through.


Last edited by killjoy_the on Fri Feb 01, 2019 6:52 pm; edited 1 time in total
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SilverTalon01



Joined: 02 Apr 2012
Posts: 1935
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 6:51 pm Reply with quote
I like him more in New Testament. Early Touma is a bit too static for a series that long.

Quote:
All of this is made even more hilarious by the fact that Touma constantly bemoans his poor luck and talks about how he wants "a fated encounter with a girl." Naturally, his male peers are annoyed at him.


Maybe he wants a fated encounter with a girl who won't abuse him? I guess there is Itsuwa and Misaki. Mikoto at least knows her lightning does nothing (not that thinking someone will dodge makes it ok to attempt attacking them). Most of these girls his male friends are jealous over probably wouldn't be if they had to put up with the same crap. I mean his poor luck counts things like walking in on a girl changing in places where you wouldn't expect it (like a classroom) and getting assaulted.

killjoy_the wrote:
And he's also a feminist (note: mainly applies when it comes to being okay with punching women)


I think he is just more for equality. He will save anyone he meets, and he will punch anyone he has to.
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khryoleoz



Joined: 21 Apr 2005
Posts: 157
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:23 pm Reply with quote
Heck no. I continue to watch this for every other supporting character around him who are way more fascinating and enjoyable: Misaka, Last Order, Accelerator, etc.
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deviljho0001



Joined: 01 Feb 2019
Posts: 7
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:32 pm Reply with quote
Peak Touma is in spoiler[NT where the story really goes crazy. Wait until you see him fighting literal harem protagonist].

[Edit]: added spoiler tags. Errinundra.
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Joe Mello



Joined: 31 May 2004
Posts: 2058
Location: Tekkoshocon
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 7:41 pm Reply with quote
Touma is the original One Punch Man. Convince me otherwise.
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TarsTarkas



Joined: 20 Dec 2007
Posts: 3891
Location: Virginia, United States
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 8:19 pm Reply with quote
I have always liked him, He likes helping people. Should be more people like him. World would be a better place.
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zrdb



Joined: 16 Apr 2006
Posts: 594
Location: Who-me? Am I supposed to be somewhere?
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 8:23 pm Reply with quote
So Touma is an equal opportunity face puncher? I've seen anime heroes who do far worse things than that-but still he does make for an interesting anti-hero. My thing for Index and Railgun is the huge casts both series have and all the interactions that occur between then. Mostly I like the series because they are just flat out entertaining.
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FilthyCasual



Joined: 01 Jun 2015
Posts: 1213
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 8:29 pm Reply with quote
I find Touma generally engaging as a protagonist, but when it comes to him as a character I can only think about his apex in NT9. Please please please let there be a Season 4 that does it justice.
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Banken



Joined: 29 May 2007
Posts: 1237
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:05 pm Reply with quote
I happen to think the entire premise of this thesis is wrong. Toma is very much an audience stand-in character. He just happens to be more one of the more interesting ones to watch. You don't give an everyman character superpowers and take away his memories for no reason.
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Nocturnal4s



Joined: 25 Dec 2017
Posts: 1
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:30 pm Reply with quote
This is one of the most well written articles I've read on ANN. Well done!
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micah007



Joined: 25 Jan 2017
Posts: 42
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 9:34 pm Reply with quote
For whatever reason I can't get enough of this franchise, I just love it. I do enjoy Touma for being a chaotic force of good, but from a combat perspective his Imagine Breaker was only cool for his first few fights to me. Granted later on Imagine Breaker being used in combat has its strength of being a true trump card/final blow highlighted I could never help but feel in a world full of outlandish powers he was stale.
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SilverTalon01



Joined: 02 Apr 2012
Posts: 1935
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:10 pm Reply with quote
FilthyCasual wrote:
I find Touma generally engaging as a protagonist, but when it comes to him as a character I can only think about his apex in NT9. Please please please let there be a Season 4 that does it justice.


Think about that... you're asking for them to put at least 9 (but lets be real they are going to finish the Othinus arc at that point) books into a season and do it justice?
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OH&S



Joined: 15 Jul 2013
Posts: 226
Location: Sydney, Australia
PostPosted: Fri Feb 01, 2019 11:25 pm Reply with quote
I never expected this from Kim. He definitely hasn't had his most awe-inspiring moments in the early novels and current anime yet (NT is a crazy roller coaster) but you've started to get a good grasp as to why he is so popular after 15 years.

Kamijou is probably one of the most hated on MCs in anime due to his bland and generic nature but damn if he's not one of my most liked MCs in all of fiction. He is unique due to the combination of his character and his ability and what specific role he plays in the story as well as the the near infinite mileage Kamachi is able to get out him for a character who doesn't appear to have a lot going for him at first glance. He's cunning and occasionally charming, a terrific problem solver on the fly, capable of seeing through to the truth of a another character's dilemma, full of quirks and has charisma, nerve, perseverance on par with the gods, despite not being as academically talented as the Level 4's and 5's in the series and limited in power in terms what he can directly affect. He really is the perfect main character for a series about supernatural powers and deception.

But strictly speaking, while Kamijou is presented is a generic average character; he is not a self-insert character which is a weak criticism to begin with. Insane is the person who would self-insert as Kamijou considering all of the crap he's gone through for ultimately zero reward except for constant maintenance of a deceptively fragile daily life. It's evident that something has happened in his life that has shaped who he is but we only have limited clues and a 10 year gap between when he first entered Academy City to current events.

Its also difficult to call him a harem protagonist as despite the fact he is surrounded by lots of girls they almost never interact with him consistently enough to call it a harem. Can you truly call it a harem if they never come together as a harem to do harem-y things? And is he is really dense if the girl that likes him the most also casually shoots bolts of lightning at him?

Also worth mentioning is the difference of his presentation between Index and Railgun. In Index, he's just an average joe barely making ends meet when faced complicated scenarios but has the conviction to pull through. In Railgun, he's the ultimate incarnation of all that is good with any act of good taken always directly compared to him; e.g. in the Silent Party Arc, all of the girls and Judgement working together to perform a miracle for Janie and Febrie is directly compared the miracle that Kamijou pulled off in the Sisters Arc which is just a Monday for him.

Its easiest to talk about his ability on a technical level. His ability is negation of supernatural; which by itself has been done to death many times throughout fiction. What makes it unique for Kamijou is how its defined. In the Toaru Series, all supernatural phenomena, be it magic or science (or something else), is firmly grounded in either scientific theory or explanations that fall in line with a meticulously defined power system. Imagine Breaker (IB) is a power that for all intents and purposes exists outside of that detailed system; and that's bizarre. Almost every other piece of fiction has their negation ability fit within their power system. In fact, IB is so generally defined that if you were to lift the ability and place it into another fictional series or setting, it would take precedence and negate any negation ability that already existed!
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