Detective Conan Live Action 2011 Review
Also known as Detective Conan Mystery Theatre Thursday, this drama is a live adaptation of the popular anime under the same name, Detective Conan.
For those unfamiliar with the premise of the anime, here is a brief breakdown of the main characters.
Kudo Shinichi (Mizobata Junpei) is a high school detective who has solved numerous cases despite his young age. Mouri Ran (Kutsuna Shiori) is his childhood friend who excels in karate. Lastly, Mouri Kogoro (Jinnai Takanori) is Ran’s father, a somewhat clumsy detective whose character is arguably used as comic relief. From the police force, Miwako Sato (Ueno Natsuhi) and Takagi Wataru (Tsuchiya Yuichi) are also present.
The show begins with Kudo Shinichi, Mouri Ran, and Mouri Kogoro waking in a white room. Confused and scared, they soon discover an “admirer’s note” addressed to Shinichi that the white room is a present for him. To escape, they soon learn that they must recall Shinichi’s past cases as it provides a keyword that allows them to venture from room to room.
The entire premise of the drama is episodic: each episode is a “new” case until the last which the audience not only discovers who the mastermind is but also a rush to solve their new predicament. Those familiar with the anime will realize that the drama provides a smooth transition into its animated counterpart.
For each case, I provided three keywords that may help you solve the case and a brief synopsis of the episode.
Reflection, Pollen, Camera.
Episode one focuses on an adulterous relationship between a photographer, Tsubochi Yuhei, and model, Momoko Aida. Angered by her sudden desire to end their relationship, he strangles her to death. Suspicious of the photographer, Shinichi’s detective career is suddenly on the line as he makes a bet with him.
Syringe, Revenge, Humiliation
Episode two takes place at a TV station where Shinichi is a guest. Washimi Jiro is a psychic and is invited to showcase his ESP skills. Doubtful, Shinichi works to prove Washimi Jiro’s supposedly nonexistent ability by solving the real mastermind behind the death of the host, Harada Takayuki.
Lipstick, Lawyer, Love Hotel
Episode three is where Ran’s mother, Kisaki Eri, appears for the first time. She is an important witness in the case of Saito Reika, a hostess who is suspected of stealing 10 million yen from the safe at her workplace. Eri, in an attempt to ward herself against Reika’s unnecessary provokes, points a “finger-gun” at her and unknowingly walks into the killer’s trap.
Soba, Greed, Kiss
A sudden call from Kogoro gets Shinichi gets involved in a murder case at the wedding ceremony of Shimabara Kanon and Motoki Kensuke. It’s quickly revealed that the groom and the bride’s best friend, Matsumoto Nana, are having an affair. As Shinichi takes a quick glance at the congratulatory messages to the couple, one takes him by surprise.
Rim, Light Switch, Anagram
Haughty actress, Nagata Chisato, suffers from sudden amnesia after the death of her director husband, Nagata Akihiro. As Shinichi’s ponders how the murder manages to put potassium cyanide into the director’s cup, it’s also questioned whether Chisato is truly suffering from amnesia.
Math, Love, Game
At a cabaret club that Kogoro frequents, the number one girl, Amajou Kumi, has her sights set on the wealthy associate math professor, Masato Mine. When the two males get involved in the popular cabaret game, “Kiss Kiss Derby”, Kumi gets poisoned from drinking the winner’s wine.
Pearl, Kidnap, Accomplice
Ran’s best friend, Suzuki Sonoko, is kidnapped along with her relative, Noguchi Yuri. In exchange, the kidnapper wants 10 billion in diamonds. As Shinichi, Ran, and Noguchi Miki, work with the police, not only do the diamonds supposedly disappear from a suitcase in midair but Miki is also killed after the rescue.
Electricity, Lingerie, Black
Ran gets sexually harassed on a bus. As she and Shinichi track him down, they encounter Sato and Takagi on a case that involves an ill grandmother and frustrated relatives.
Sound, bond, adultery
This is my favorite episode as this is Hattori Heiji and Touyama Kazuha first and (sadly) last appearance on the show. For those unfamiliar with the characters, Heiji is a high school detective from Osaka who is Shinichi’s friend and rival. Kazuha is Ran’s Osaka counterpart.
After chasing down a street robber, Shinichi gets involved in a case with a music producer and his wife. During an affair, the glass above suddenly shatters on the mistress, killing her. Early in the investigation, Shinichi lies about his identity to observe his Osaka counterpart.
Three, Deceit, Video Call
Mizutani Yuko is a client of Kogoro who is getting stalked and abused by her ex-lover, Kubo Shunsuke. Ran, however, ends up in a video chat with her after Kogoro bails, and almost ends up witnessing a violent episode. As Mizutani Yuko ends up dead in an apartment far from her own, Shinichi wonders where the true crime took place.
Pink, Wink, Dark
Another episode favorite. This episode is taken from the anime and should be familiar to those who watch it.
Shinichi takes Ran to an expensive restaurant but gets involved in a case that leaves the president of a game company dead in an elevator and suspicions cast upon his daughter’s lover.
Birthday, Trust, Corruption
Sonoda Machiko, a Beika Bank employee, is murdered in a locked vicinity. As Kogoro and Shinichi investigates, they have three employees who step forward claiming they are the culprit.
Ran, Cellphone, Teamwork
The last episode. The trio reaches the end of their white room maze. However, before they can escape, Shinichi and Ran are separated once again and are knocked out by a mysterious gas from the vent. Yet, they are discovered outside by Takagi and Sato. While Shinichi has regained consciousness, Ran is declared dead. As Shinichi is taken away by the police, he finds a note in his pocket from the culprit.
While the anime is geared toward a younger audience, this live adaptation is clearly targeting a mature crowd. Perhaps this is why it didn’t do so well locally with an average viewership rating of 4.98%.
However, the drama itself is enjoyable with the chemistry between Shinichi and Ran endearing and relaxed. If you’re looking for a mystery drama for the weekend, I would recommend this one as it’s easily digestible and fast with each episode lasting approximately 30 minutes.