Fugou Keiji: Balance Unlimited
Genre: Mystery, Comedy, Police
Length: 11 episodes
My temptation to watch this show came from my deep rooted love of detective shows. It would not be an exaggeration to say that I simp for detective crime fighters. Sherlock Holmes is my mans. I’ve seen the show, watched the movies and read the books. Justice bound characters like Captain America, Nancy Drew, Doctor Who and L.. damn, I got a soft spot for them. Rich, cocky crime fighters like Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark, they have the whole ‘bad boy doing good things’ vibe going on which I love. Add to that some pretty cool dynamic duos… *chef’s kiss*. So when I saw the cover and read the overview for The Millionaire Detective, it was obviously binge time.
That first bite Slapped tho
A rich millionaire, Daisuke Kanbe (Voiced by Yuusuke Oonuki) with his AI butler, who believes money can solve all problems, joins the Modern Crime Prevention Headquarters as a detective.
He gets partnered up with a down to earth, justice seeking detective, Katou Haru (Voiced by Mamoru Miyano), to fight crime. I was quite amused at the first couple of episodes. It was a light hearted mystery show.
I enjoyed the visuals and chemistry between the two characters. I was even vibing to the opening and closing tracks. So, I was pretty stoked to find another fun detective anime. Unfortunately this feeling didn’t stay consistent throughout the show.
The Genre Mishmash Conundrum
Around the end of the third episode the show took a very slapstick-y comedic approach. It threw me off-guard. I knew it said comedy as one of it’s genre, but this one seemed more absurd rather than a humorous one, **Spoiler alert: A bunch of Grannies are obsessed with a boy band and their passion to see the group’s last concert makes them aggressive enough to throw off a “terrorist” taking them hostage.** Huh. That didn’t really sit well with me, especially since the previous episodes had a justifiable element to it.
Even so I still continued hoping it was just that one episode. It was. But not for the reasons I hoped. It went back to a light hearted comedy and around the 5th episode it finally seemed to develop the much awaited plot. Once that began it just turned into a murder mystery drama that got too serious too quick. I honestly don’t have an issue with any of these genres but the inconsistent display of this throughout the show made it feel like they couldn’t pick a suitable genre and just tossed and sprinkled bits and pieces of everything around. It was like the Mint Chocolate chip Ice-cream of shows. I like mint, I like chocolate, I like ice cream but I cannot stand them together.
Bland Plot and Character Developments
The cases, and murders shown weren’t anything special or out of the ordinary. They were pretty basic or rather, were there for easy entertainment. When the plot finally came into play, I was curious to know more about Daisuke, and maybe even Katou. But between the “controversial” death of Daisuke’s parents and an unfortunate shooting incident with Katou there wasn’t much depth to it. Most of the time I was just confused; unsure if the confusion was intended or if things were just missing. A lot of segments in the show were left open ended and filled with plot holes and easy plot armour resolves. It’s like wanting to eat some cheese, cherries and pineapple with your wine; but running out of cherry, only to find that you have a blackforest cake in your fridge with cherries on top.
The other various characters were interesting to begin with and had so much potential to be extraordinary. However, there didn’t seem to be any character development within any of the characters. It stayed pretty stagnant. Not even between the partnership of Daisuke and Katou. The characters stayed the same with nothing swaying them to make a change within themselves, and if any change happened at all – it was too sudden and random to be called a ‘character development’.
The Amiss Bromance
Ah, the bromance that could have been. This point bugged me the most. Daisuke and Katou, these two contrasting characters without a doubt had a chemistry that could bring so much color and humour. Sadly, it was a swing and a miss.
It seemed to be going in the right direction when in one of the episodes, (which I personally thought was rather adorable) Daisuke had to go through a day as a commoner since he left his wallet and AI gear at home. He ended up spending the night at Katou’s place. I would have called it a filler episode but then for it to be called a ‘filler’, there should have been a plot in the first place… But you do get to see him deal with the day-to-day dilemmas of that basic life. It’s always fun, albeit, a bit cliché, to see the rich guy stumble through everyday basic skills while your average Joe has the upper hand in these matters teaching him a thing or two. So, it was quite entertaining. And we do get to see Daisuke’s cute-ass duality go from the slick-back haired, vest wearing, gentleman to a wet-haired, sweatshirt wearing cutie.
Yes, I giggled at this scene, don’t judge me. This seemed like a good starting point for the two characters to bond. I was really looking forward to seeing their journey together against each other’s life philosophies and against a common enemy. Unfortunately, No Spice. Sure, it was shown that they had each other’s back but it is their jobl. It just seemed to exist for the sake of existing. They didn’t go through any exciting hardships to grow and change together as partners. At the end they suddenly seemed to understand each other out of nowhere and become a team with still some unnecessary reluctance on both sides.
A lukewarm Dish on a Fancy Platter
Luckily, after watching some intense shows, I was in a mood to watch something simple, so I wasn’t too disappointed. The animation isn’t bad. It has some pleasing aesthetics to it and despite the cons it was still engaging enough to keep me till the end. I wouldn’t say it was a waste of time, but it also wasn’t good enough for me to recommend this show to anyone. I’d give it a solid 6. This show did have an amazing potential to be a good crime show with characters to drive the story rather than a weak plot armour but it just felt like they let the opportunity slip by.
So, if you just want to watch a hot Millionaire solve crimes by burning through his money and a cute detective seeking justice through simple cases – by all means have at it. But if you want a good detective show with a strong plot, intriguing characters and unique cases you can skip this one. I’m sure there are quite a few good detective animes out there 🙂
As the title of the final episode of this show states:
p.s. let me know your thoughts on this show. Would love to read them, also what detective animes, shows or movies do you love? 🙂