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Otaku Review: Detective Conan/ Case Closed

Conan as a kid

Take a genius crime-solving teenager. Put him in the body of a six-year-old child, give him a tranquilizer dart, a shooting clock and some other high tech tools that would make Q jealous. Sprinkle it with 800 plus episodes and 20 movies riddled with crime and corpses and there you have it. Detective Conan (aka: Case Closed) is the longest running detective series in the world…and also one of the most violent series imaginable. In virtually every episode someone dies in a gruesome and mysterious way.

1
A corpse has been found!

Kundo Shinchi was tailing some men in black who knocked him out and fed him an experimental drug that shrunk his body. Since this would put some real strain on his hobby of solving crimes, he came up with a brilliant ploy. He got his friend, Dr. Agasa to make him a bunch of gadgets to compensate for his size and age. Conan then moved in with his friend and potential love interest: Ran.

2
Conan and the kids from his class

 

Incidentally, his childhood friend has a father who is a drunken womanizing gumshoe who jumps to conclusions and sucks at solving cases. Fortunately this turned out to be easily rectified, as Conan drugs the poor sod and proceeds to imitate his voice every time a suspect is about to be exposed. This gave the man the nickname Sleeping Kogoro, and a lot of fame (which in turn attracted even more cases). Naturally Conan has to keep it hidden from everyone else, lest the men in black who shrunk him in the first place find out he’s alive, and the proceed to kill everyone he loves and cares about.

4
SCIENCE!

Mind you, he’s quite capable of getting them almost killed himself due to the abnormally high crime rate in Japan. I can assure you that when he and his friends are about and at it, corpses will fall from the sky in a flat, featureless desert.

5
Kogoro, random stranger, Rans friend, Ran and the kids
6
I want those spy glasses!
7
Suspension of disbelief, Ran is a black belt.
8
Rule of awesome beats reality!

Every now and then he is also joined by his fellow classmates and Heiji, who is also a detective, and Ai, who was part of the organization. She too, shrunk herself into a child with the mysterious drug. It should by now be worth mentioning that the first episode of Detective Conan starts with a couple getting decapitated in a roller-coaster, which means that the series can get quite bloody and absurd at times. Most of the time however, it’s quite down to earth (if you ignore the absurd number of explosives that show up in the movies and his inflatable soccer ball dispenser).Some suspension of disbelief is needed, since the whole reason Detective Conan keeps up the masquerade from his friends does become quite arbitrary. It’s not that hard to deduce that this kid is too smart for his own good. But then again time does not seem to move much in the series, even when the technology is updated. The author has clearly done his research, and for the most part it’s accurate and wears its inspiration on its sleeve.

Watch it on Crunchyroll
http://www.crunchyroll.com/case-closed

Njål Sand

Otaku Review: J-LIST Snack Subscription: June

Well, it’s the last J-List Subscription Box, and I have to say it’s been a great time. At the end of this article you will see our final thoughts on its overall worth. But now for the moment you have all been waiting for…the actual review of the candies that we received in the package:

DSC_0071

DSC_0068Froggies
Dan: They are actually quite melon tasting. But what do you expect from a country with melon bread and sweet melon liqueur (Midori). Japanese love anything with melon flavor!
Gelly: Sweet and cute. I absolutely enjoy them, and they would make a great gift for friends.

 

DSC_0069Mario Gum
Dan: I had the sudden urge to jump up and hit blocks with my head, but refrained just in time after considering the resulting concussion. They are really amazing though, like chewing a piece of  Nintendo-themed Stride gum.
Gelly: The packaging is really cute; the gum smells and tastes great, although has a bit of sourness to it.

 

 

DSC_0063Lychee Gummies
Dan: Smells a bit like the shampoo you’d get at the dollar store, but tastes amazing. Chew it up and let it stay in your mouth for a bit; you will be overwhelmed with flavor.
Gelly: Smells like a lychee (I don’t know what Dan is talking about) and has a great mild flavor.

DSC_0070Stick
Dan: Tastes like the Hubba Bubba squeeze pop candies I ate as a child at the movie theaters. It’s not bad, but at the same time it’s not great. “Unique” would be a fitting description.
Gelly: Sweet and extremely sticky…Dan even got some on his arm. Kind of plain in its flavor, overall.

DSC_0062Mango
Dan: Smells like mango, but it’s one of those love-hate kind of things. You taste the mango, and feels like you’re eating caramel popcorn. But the overall texture is that of wet powdered sugar…not exactly the best marketing ploy.
Gelly: It’s pretty sweet; and for me, just not tasty.

DSC_0065Fruit Mix
Dan: Each candy tastes like the flavor it represents, except the lemon. That tastes like Lemon Pledge cleaner, which I found kind of disturbing.
Gelly: The cherry flavor is amazing, and the orange and cantaloupe are the absolute best of the bunch.

DSC_0067Cow
Dan: It tastes like the cream you’d get in Japanese canned iced coffee. I really enjoy it.

 

 

Gelly: Milky caramel…it’s good, but also weird.

DSC_0064Dried Squid
Dan: Extremely salty, stringy and a bit bitter at times. I needed to keep water on hand for this. In all fairness though, I’m not a fan of seafood.
Gelly: Don’t look at me…I’m vegetarian. I’ll let Dan do this one.

DSC_0061Cracker
Dan: Honestly, this one isn’t on the list; they included extra snacks! Overall, it tastes like a plain rice cracker and I really enjoyed it. It smells of a deep strong Worcestershire sauce. Gelly: Smells kinda strange and a bit off-putting. I’ll let Daniel handle this, also.

Well, for three months we got to indulge in a bit of Japanese culture by sampling a variety of snacks and treats. Some made us gag, while others made us beg for more. But what we can agree on is that the J-List Snack Subscription is totally worth the price if you are a hardcore Otaku. If you cannot visit Japan and cannot get to an anime convention anywhere else, then this is the best alternative.

For roughly $25 to $33 U.S. per month (depending on what kind of mailing service you want), you can get a variety of snacks and candy selected by the staff at J-List.com. Some boxes even come with extra items, like this one did. It was absolutely amazing!

Down the road we will probably continue the snack subscriptions, and I have to say it’s been great fun. I loved every minute of it, as did Ingelin and we hope you enjoyed reading about our experiences with the Japanese candy!

Edit: We actually have one more month left to go, I thought we had a three month subscription.

-Daniel Clatworthy-