Medaka Box Abnormal Episode 3: Genius in a Bottle
“If there were a bottle with a potion that could turn you into a genius…would you drink it?”
Medaka and Zenkichi meet Oudo on the top of the school’s clock tower, who tells them that the Flask Plan’s base is situated underground, in a complex thirteen floors deep. Arriving at the entrance, they are barred by the Door of Denial, one that only allows select Abnormals through by requiring a changing passcode every time it gets opened. After Medaka easily passes through, Akune and Kikaijima arrive, with the latter also easily passing through by picking up on Medaka’s hints. Akune decides to destroy the gate completely, and the Student Council quickly encounter their first member of the Thirteen Party – Takachiho Shigusa.
The meeting with Oudo didn’t really turn out to be a full-scale battle like what happened with Unzen, but rather just a meeting and a warning for things to come in the future – everything’s going to be taking place beneath the clock tower, 13 floors underground in the very depths of the Flask Plan. I can’t wait to see Medaka put him in his place – not only because he asked her out, but because of Oudo’s holier-than-thou attitude, even to the point of comparing himself directly as a reflection of the sun. It’s transcended the limit of arrogance I think, since I’m getting the feeling that Oudo truly does view himself as a supreme being merely because of his Abnormality. Though it’s true that Medaka and Zenkichi can now take the weight of his words, it’s definitely not an ace up his sleeve of any sorts, and from just the ninja wall-walking thing you can tell that he’s still got more to offer.
More interestingly was Oudo’s specific explanation of the Flask Plan – I might have said this before, but they’ve confirmed that it’s something like a bottle with a potion inside that you could drink, making you an artificial genius in which you gained all the rewards from hard work and labour without putting it any of the effort yourself. I don’t quite understand what there is to gain by mass producing geniuses, but it seems like all members of the Thirteen Party have their own agenda and motive behind joining – and similarly, people quit because of their own agenda as well. What I also found gruesome was the price to pay as a result of the Flask Keikaku, and that is the likely sacrifice of the vast majority of Hakoniwa Academy students. If they’ll just be made to drink the potion as a test, even if the potion is perfect the strain of going from Normal to Abnormal must be ridiculous – people who are average and are not able to carry out physics-defying movements are suddenly accelerated into Abnormality, which as Oudo said will break 98% of the students. Time for Medaka to step in and head underground.
The entry Door of Denial was a really nice mechanic, as were its apparent odds of 1 in a million. It basically judges who is worthy to proceed further on, most likely for their own safety more than the Flask Plan’s to be honest. That way, it’ll only let in Abnormals, barring all Normals and Specials from entry. How the Abnormals would enter the correct code each time (just because they’re destined to) I have no idea, but then again, how is their dice experiment any more feasible? Poor Zenkichi, at any rate. He couldn’t figure out that it was his birthday, even after a truckload of hints from Medaka. Something they skipped when adapting was the Chairman’s comment that even after Medaka and Kikaijima had gone, when Zenkichi stepped towards the door it reset itself back to his birthday – a coincidence, or not?
Anyway, I’ve only just realized that we have the entire Student Council once more! I was wondering where Akune and Kikaijima had gone actually, since the first two episodes pretty much set up the new premise and dived straight into the action. Both members were really cool, especially Akune who seems to have a better relationship with Zenkichi and can spout lines that are a bit cheesy but still full of feels – and I agree, it’s only when they’re all there that you can really call the group the Student Council! Also, the twins remind me of Nomi. It must be the superior smirk, then the look of utter shock and defeat once things don’t go your way.
So Medaka’s first battle is with “Hard Wrapping” Takachiho Shigusa, who seems to be on a totally different level to Unzen – aside from also apparently using some superballs as seen in the preview, he’s incredibly fast and was too fast for Zenkichi or even Akune to track his progress. Maybe Takachiho is a pretty hard battle for the first floor out of thirteen – but you know what they say in shounen manga, the best way of levelling up is through direct, life-threatening RL experience. Onwards!