Nothing excites middle-schooler Kobayashi anymore. Except for his friend Hashiba, all other people are the same to him. His dull life became exciting when he woke up holding a weapon and found his homeroom teacher dismembered in the classroom. The investigators suspected him but Kobayashi was more than willing to cooperate. He was even cheerful about being part of a murder. Finally, his life was exciting. All he had to do after all was find the real murderer.
To Hashiba's horror, Kobayashi went to one of the detectives and asked to become an assistant. Akechi Kogorou is a 17-year-old genius detective. Like Kobayashi, he admits to solving crimes for fun. Looking for the homeroom teacher's murderer was just the beginning of their adventures.
|Kobayashi woke up to find his teacher's dismembered corpse|
|Kobayashi and his best friend Hashiba|
The 11-episode series reminds me of Aoi Bungaku in its character development approach. What also seems absurd for the normal viewers is not questioned in the series. Images, sounds, and even the supporting cast create an eerie environment. There's one character who has a paper bag on his head that no one seems to mind. The cases in which Akechi and Kobayashi are involved in are equally disturbing.
I'm not gonna give this a high rating because I don't get Kobayashi at all. Maybe his unpredictability complements the atmosphere of the murders or maybe the effect was the opposite. Perhaps its his effeminate qualities that tick me off because he's something you can't categorize easily. If this was the kind of effect Kobayashi was supposed to have on the audience however, then it worked on me.
One arc in the series might also interest Death Note fans. Twenty Faces is a different take on the idea of vigilante justice.
Ranpo Kitan: Game of Laplace is not your ordinary detective series. The characters are deviant (sometimes making it difficult for me to like them) and there are things that have been left unanswered. Some episodes triggered a headache, literally. If there's one word to describe the series, it's strange. It's not a bad series however. If you're not squeamish about blood and violence and have nothing against weird lead characters, then you might enjoy the series. Ranpo Kitan has a dream-like quality to it.
Rating: 6.5 out of 10