First Impression: Kitsutsuki Tanteidokoro (Woodpecker Detective’s Office)

Kyosuke-san, a Literature professor from the Meiji Era, visits the apartment he used to rent as a youth and remembers the life and death of his dear friend, the genius poet and detective Takuboku Ishikawa (a real person, apparently). In the years of the Europization, this man, who was carefree, dispendious, and quite a flirt, discovered that he had a talent for observation and deduction. According to him, poetry and detective skills are both about details, about observing what the rest of the people deem evident and find a whole story contained in a little thing. Occasion came for it to be of use when they became randomly involved in a murder one night at the red light district. And there starts the Sherlockesque quest, with Kyosuke as an admiring Watson, which will eventually lead (or so it seems) to the reason behind Ishikawa’s demise.

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This was an interesting one. It reminded me in tone and pace of Shōwa Genroku Rakugo Shinjū, which I really liked. Though there was some minor nudity in the search of the red light district, I think that, in general, it was portrayed tastefully. The detective aspect of the story is clever enough, with plenty of twists and turns, and I can buy the poet-detective concept. The main characters are intriguing (and of course, the bleak destiny augured to the main character from minute one puts an unique spin on the story). Yet, it needs to go deeper: The mystery was not so compelling for me to watch the entire series solely for the sake it. It all will depend on the development of the main characters. We will see.

Kitsutsuki Tanteidokoro can be streamed at Crunchyroll.

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