Saturday, March 26, 2011

TVonDVD: Case Closed Season One (Review)

Case Closed: Season One
1996/2004 (2009) - Funimation
Released on DVD on July 14, 2009

# of Discs: 4
Runtime: 600 minutes

Solving crimes can be a dangerous and deadly occupation but no one knows the detective game better than Jimmy Kudo. With a confidence grown from having no one outsmart him, Jimmy runs head on into a situation that finds him poisoned by a dastardly duo. Instead of death however, Jimmy finds himself shrunk back to his childhood body. Using a new persona, Conan Edogawa, to hide his identity, he finds a home with his best friend, Rachel Moore and helps her father, Detective Richard Moore solve crimes all the while trying to find more about the men in black that poisoned him.

Highlights of the season include the very first episode, "The Big Shrink", where the show introduces Jimmy Kudo, his brilliant deductive mind, his relationship with Rachel and ends with the series plot twist of how he becomes Conan Edogawa. The third episode, "Beware of Idols", introduces pop idol Yoko Okino to the series as well as Conan's voice-changing bow-tie that Conan uses to emulate Richard's voice when saving crimes and in that episode uses it to call Rachel as Jimmy and calm her worries.

The first two-part story of the series comes nearly midway through the season, "The Moonlight Sonata Murder Case", that has Conan, Rachel and Richard heading to Moon Light Island thanks to a letter from a famous pianist that has been dead for twelve years. There is another excellent two-parter near the end of the season and in a nice change of pace of the usual routine there are also episodes where Conan and his Detective League friends dominate the story, like "Kidnapped: Amy" where the three boys have to race across town chasing a car to save their girl friend from what seems to be a deadly fate.

Unfortunately when most anime series are put into season sets, nearly all of the extras - both on the discs and packaged with the single volume cases - are left out of the products. That is just one of the breaks with going for the affordable price of a season set over purchasing several single volumes. Outside of trailers for other anime series Funimation offers, the only "extras" in the set are a character and gadget spotlight on Conan Edogawa and his Super Sneakers. The spotlight is a very basic text summary along with an image, not much to talk about.

Fans of animation that also have a taste for mysteries or police shows will enjoy and be used to each episode having a new case to figure out with Conan along with the occasional two-part story. There is not much about the men in black in the first season but most of the main characters of the show are introduced in this initial set of episodes and the foundation that the rest of the series builds upon (still ongoing in Japan) is created. One of my favorite anime series by far and definitely at least worth checking out.

Look to buy the Case Closed Season One DVD set over at Amazon for only $18.99.
Check out GeekPlate's Tumblr for today's Case Closed/Detective Conan themed picspam.

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