Accel World episode 14: Takumu loses a kendo match to a new student named Nomi, who appears to be using the power to accelerate. But the matching list does not show any new Duel Avatars appearing in the area. (Source: Hulu)
Spoiler/language warning: Not only are there spoilers for this fourteenth episode of Accel World, I'm also throwing up a warning for some excessive cursing on my behalf. Just a heads up!
To the writers who decided to hand Haruyuki and his friends the ubiquitous Idiot Ball this arc: y'all can take it back now. It's getting a bit painful to see Haru stumble around trying to figure out things when he should realistically know better by now. And now with Kuroyukihime going on a school trip and Haru responsible for keeping Nega Nebulous in control of their region in Brain Burst, I can only fear the worst.
Having said that, this is clearly Taku's story arc as he takes on his kendo rival and fellow accelerator as well as himself. Hopefully, it will end in Takumu getting a spine and standing up for his beliefs, finally shedding all of his useless guilt over his previous actions as Cyan Pile - because I really can't stand this hopeless mopey Taku right now.
As for Chiyu, her support of Taku is kind of brainless but understandable because I really don't think she understands what Taku did before but loves him regardless and wants him to succeed. Also, I can't help but think the show is trying to create unnecessary romantic tension between Chiyu and Haru, people with signficant others who seem perfectly content in their current relationships.
The whole Chiyu/Haru shower scene was really fanservicey but somehow they made the bathroom mix-up into an actual plot point. Hacking is serious business! Still, you think Haru would just remember which direction is the boys' locker room without having to look. Right?
I'm one of those students who have unconscious memorization of the location of my college classes; after a week or so, I don't even note the room numbers, I automatically know where the rooms are. I suspect Haruyuki is the same way so that he technically didn't need to look at Nomi's hacked signs – but like I said before, the Idiot Ball keeps bouncing between the main trio's hands all throughout this episode.
As for the new villain type of this story arc, eww. I want to shove Nomi's face into a toilet and let him taste the swirl of dirty pee-pee water. He's a malicious, stuck-up jerk and I can't stand him, which I'm sure is the point but still. The problem is, he's supposed to be Taku's foil and show him how manipulating real life with acceleration can be a bad thing, but he's such a caricature of a bad person it's hard to take him seriously.
Plus, his sexual harassment of Chiyu is just disgusting and unneeded. It's clearly there for pure shock value. I wish it wasn't a thing but it is clearly going to be a major part of his character. Like, we get it, Nomi is a creep! Turning Chiyu into a target for his advances and making her unable to defend herself is too much.
Speaking of which, I kind of really want Lime Bell to smash Nomi's BB avatar Dusk Taker in the end, even though she's a healing user and her main big attack is one for healing allies. Hey, if you level up a white mage enough, they can be as strong as a fighter!
Now we've got Haru and Nomi facing off in a duel, which seems to me can't end well. If Nomi is the kind of Brain Burst user that can use the physical burst via acceleration with such ease, it'll take a ton of effort on Haruyuki's part to beat his ass down. Without Kuroyukihime's guidance, Haru is definitely going to have some trouble finding his footing as a lone fighter on the battlefield. He can't rely on his flying abilities forever.
Having said that? Haruyuki, curb stomp this idiot! For Chiyu-san! If you can't whoop Dusk Taker as Silver Crow, I'll have to disown you temporarily until you can do better!
You can watch subbed streaming episodes of Accel World on Hulu and Viz's anime webpage. Also, if you are a fan of Haruyuki's avatar, here's a heads up: Right Stuf has a six inch Silver Crow figure from Bandai, wings and all, up for pre-order with a release date of August 30. And at fifty bucks, that means shipping is free!
Personally, I'm holding out for a figure of either Lime Bell or Aqua Current. Don't let me down, Bandai Figure!