Medaka Box Abnormal Episode 4: Zero Reflex
“My Abnormal ability! Reflexes, reflex plus judgement, and autopilot! Even my kick boxing fighting style…they were all rendered Normal before you, Student Council President Kurokami Medaka!”
On the first level of the Flask Plan being conducted under Hakoniwa Academy, Medaka faces off against “Hard Wrapping” Takachiho Shigusa, an Abnormal with the ability to manipulate his reflexes. Takachiho has a USB data chip containing the experiments he underwent for the Flask Plan – something which Medaka is willing to go to all costs to obtain.
This is the first official fight between Medaka and the Thirteen Party’s Front Six – Medaka vs Takachiho Shigusa, known as “Hard Wrapping” in in the Flask Plan. And what a fight it was – truly what Medaka Box is all about. The first thing to mention would be Takachiho’s abilities – he’s a physical fighter, all the way. Relying on nothing but his fists, it’s extremely different to Unzen’s superballs or Myouga’s…bigger chain ball. I found his Abnormality not too hax and pretty standard for this show – the ability to manipulate reflexes. Like that, Takachiho is able to instinctively move himself quickly as well as put his brain on autopilot, allowing his muscles to reflexively move his body while his brain can deal with other things. In hand-to-hand combat, or just dodging things in general, that’s an incredibly useful trait to have. It means he can move at insane speeds by letting the reflexes kick in, and that’s why its Abnormal – not because he has good reflexes, but he’s able to control them and apply them wherever he wants. Normally we only reflexively move when touching a hot object for example – but Takachiho can apply that ability anywhere and at any time. It’s almost creepy to think that all of the Thirteen Party are monsters on the level of this guy.
Of course, calling Takachiho the only monster would be absolutely wrong, because Medaka clearly showed that her training with Maguro paid off completely. Her goal was to obtain that USB with Flask Plan data on it – and I found it really like Medaka to ignore everything else and stubbornly try to achieve her goal no matter the cost. I mean, she blocked a flying kick with her HEAD. Really, what kind of retarded idiot would risk bashing their skull open for a USB? It’s the same with her abilities – she’s shown her Bunshin before back when we were still on the slice-of-life edition of the show, but Kurokami Phantom is monstrous , and even more ridiculous was the idea that she was aiming for the moment Takachiho blinked to move at such a fast speed to the point that the data chip just fell apart.
I suppose that leads to the idea that Medaka is the opposite of Takachiho and has NO natural reflexes, being in total control of all her muscles. That’s probably why she never instinctively reacted to the face kick, and has always preached “there’s no reason for me to be attacked, so there’s no reason to dodge” – it’s not that she had no reason to, its’ that she couldn’t. Add that to her personality of willing to take hits if it means getting the info, and you’ve got someone who will seriously get hurt somewhere down the line. As she can control her muscles, she can go past their limits and use her full potential, as well as suppress pain nerves in her body – but really, it’s a thing that’s beyond human limits for a reason, and is a line that must never be crossed, which is why she took that much damage after using Kurokami Phantom. I’m actually really impressed at her level of dedication, and that she’s willing to go so far to crush the Flask Plan, which is something that’s never really affected her personally.
Another thing I noticed was that both Medaka and Takachiho were unusually happy at being able to fight – some of the expressions Medaka made is something that uh…runs in her family.
You’ll understand later. Anyway, apart from most Abnormals having led fucked up childhoods, they often have to deal with simply being the best – while now, both Abnormals can finally deal with people their level. Takachiho only continuted to fight because Medaka, someone who could damage him to this extent, was there – which is his whole reason for agreeing to enter Flask Keikaku. It’s natural to want to see who is better – this came from a shounen manga after all.
What’s really foreboding to me is that in Medaka’s opinion, she’s one step closer to crushing the Flask Plan, but both combatants grew – Takachiho put reflexes with judgement in the middle of the fight, while Medaka learnt to use it – unknowingly, they are both participants of the plan, and are one step closer to being perfect – which is the whole point of the Flask Keikaku in the first place. Anyway, next week we’ll deal with mass murderer Munakata Kei – and some unusual surprises as well!