I know my heart should guide me, but,
There's a hole within my soul.
What will fill this emptiness inside of me?
Am I to be satisfied without knowing?
I wish, then, for a chance to see,
Now all I need, (desperately)
Is my star to come...
"Wind's Nocturne", Lunar: Silver Story
So I was kinda surprised to see Detective Conan 76 in the stores here in Kyoto today. Especially as the official release date is actually in two days. Yay for early releases! And to be honest, I had really forgotten that Conan 76 was to be released this month: I am sure that it wasn't that long ago I reviewed volume 75! Doesn't it usually take three months between every volume? Anyway, this also explains the crappy photo of the cover by the way: official scans of the cover, usually found on websites of bookstores, aren't available yet. The newest volume starts off with Nocturne of the Detectives, an interesting story mostly meant to advance the main storyline. Mouri Kogorou and the gang are lured out of the office and when they come back, they find that someone had been impersonating as Mouri in order to procure a key from a prospective client. The imposter commits suicide when he discovers that Mouri is on to him, but Conan suspects there is more to the story than what meets the eye.
What follows is a rather easy and predictable plot surrounding the mysterious imposter and the prospective client, but what makes this particular story so fun is that it clearly poses Subaru Okiya, Amuro Tooru and Sera Masumi as the three candidates for the Black Organisation spy Bourbon. I had hoped on some more hints on who Bourbon really is, but who knows, the denoumement of this particular storyline might turn out to be as surprising as what we saw in volume 42.
The Death Calling Barbeque is a Detective Boys story, so not too interesting. The DBs are invited to a barbeque by a young couple they met while camping a bit earlier. During the barbeque, the couple has a fight and the husband accidently stabs his wife. Or did he? Like many of the DB stories, a short and rather predictable story, with an often-seen misdirection trick. It's also the second story in this volume that focuses a lot on human drama. The last volume also ended in a rather melodramatic tone. Style-change of Aoyama?
The Entrusted Feelings of the Wataru Brothers is one of the human drama stories set at the Metropolitan Police Department stories that you either like or not. Takagi Wataru, who can be called a lucky man because he's dating Satou, or an unlucky man because of all the things he has suffered until now in this series, is once again in a pinch as he has been kidnapped by a person (or persons) unknown. And laid upon a girder with a noose around his neck. Who kidnapped Takagi and why? A story that would work fantastic as a short TV movie, with suspense! and mystery! and human drama! and romance! and stuff, but it feels a bit light here, especially as Takagi has been in too many pinches by now. And it is really never his fault (note: I like Takagi's character and he really should get more lucky breaks!).
An OK volume, as the opening and ending story are suspenseful enough to keep the normal reader interested, but as detective stories this trio is kinda disappointing. Which also explains why this is a rather short review. There is just too little to write about it (in the context of this blog). Hope the next volume is a back to the more classic style of stories.
Oh, and when did Conan change his clamshell phone for a smartphone? And more interesting reviews of more interesting stuff will come... when I actually read more interesting stuff. Hmm. Even the four posts a month thingy is becoming challenging now.
Original Japanese title(s): 青山剛昌 『名探偵コナン』第76巻