Post Reply The File of Young Kindaichi Returns
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Posted 5/28/14
by hanachan

In America we have tons of dark, gritty, supernatural mystery anime, such as Death Note and Persona, but it’s surprisingly hard to find a good old fashioned murder mystery series. I know I can’t be the only Agatha Christie reader saddened by this. But luckily The File of Young Kindaichi--the manga for which has been running longer in Japan than Detective Conan--totally fits the bill. And with the arrival of sequel series The File of Young Kindaichi Returns we can all get in on the (killer?) fun!



Kindaichi himself is your average underachieving genius high school lech, who happens to have inherited his famous detective grandfather’s skills, though no one would guess it to look at him--or his grades. He goes to school and has the usual friends and teachers, along with Miyuki, the girl he’s known forever and they like each other but he’s stupid and messes it up over and over. He’s also got random idols and girls in every case falling for him--though I can never figure out why, since he’s a total derp.



So it sounds painfully typical, but the cases really make it special. In the manga the volumes are usually one full murder mystery, and it looks like the anime will be following that, at least some of the time, since the first four episodes comprise a single story, though the fifth is a stand-alone episode. The solutions to the mysteries aren’t easy to guess either, which makes it pretty fun as you jump from suspicion to suspicion yourself!



One of the things I like most about The File of Young Kindaichi Returns is how they updated the stories to use more modern technology. They do a lot of GPS tracking and stuff with their phones (in the first story Kindaichi takes a picture and flips it with his phone to read mirror writing), and it definitely modernizes the feel of a normally very 90’s series. But it does still totally retain the feel of the manga



Fans of the Kindaichi manga or original anime series or specials will definitely enjoy this show, but you really don’t have to have any familiarity with the series to be able to jump in. It’s always been fairly episodic, and there aren’t any major backstories for the main characters that you need to know. It’s a straightforward detective series with cases that are really fun to try to solve along with Kindaichi as you watch. So if that sounds like your kind of thing, be sure to check The File of Young Kindaichi Returns out every Saturday at 3:30am, only on Crunchyroll!

Watching The File of Young Kindaichi Returns? Tell us what you think!
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Posted 5/28/14
I was a fan of the manga since I was in high school (more than 10 years back!), and it's great to see the anime bringing in a refreshing tone of modernity, as you mentioned. I'm not sure if it's because I have grown up a bit or if I'm more skeptical than I used to, but the show caters to a clearly shounen audience. The mysteries aren't as mind-boggling as I recall them, but there's enough sherlock holmes-esque super sleuthing to be had that tickles the little nostalgia in me.

I would have appreciated it if they engaged the viewer more, as they do in the manga. For example, they could focus in on scenes or give evidence to items presented that would make the viewer curious and think as to its significance. Instead, a lot of the clues in each mystery are more an afterthought than an actual revelatory presence. Still, I'm glad to see that the franchise is still receiving a strong following from the young generation of today. It's certainly not detective conan, but for those looking for a classic Sherlock-like detective show, then Kindaichi's got you all covered.
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