Ok, it’s back. The more I thought about it, the more I liked the last episode of Ron Kamonohashi in retrospect and now I just plain liked this episode as it aired. It was the slightly subversive mix of irreverently goofy and earnest that I have come to really appreciate about the show and I’m just glad I decided to watch it!
AniList has it currently at 71% and I think they are plain wrong. It’s a fun show which at it’s best reminds me of Vanitas. Not in any direct way but in the specific type of enjoyment I get from it. Which is a lot. If the dead cat was a little more present so that we could have a Murr in this show, I think it would be an instant classic!
One of the things I noticed early on but never mentioned here is the intro and outro to this show. They’re fine in isolation but not all that memorable. What’s cool though is that all the important characters of the season appear in the intro animation. Well most of them. It’s not reused animation, they actually created a little vignette with the characters from the different mysteries and I really like that.
Of course, we see Sensei Mofu in the ED. She’s actually singing part of it. And I remember when I first saw her, thinking that this would be a very serious potentially wistful character. Something to bring on depth. Maybe a victim that Ron fails to help or an antagonist, a sort of fragile moriarity. And I am genuinely thrilled to find out how wrong I was. Mofu sensei is not only another sweet cinnamon roll of a character but she’s yet another lovable goofball to add to the bunch. And it was love at first…second sight. I really like her. She a subtle foil to our protagonists and I really hope we see more of her. The ladies in this show are killing it! Not literally!
So I guess I should talk about the episode just a bit. Ron has been living in self-imposed isolation from the outside world so he hasn’t known the particular joys (and tortures) of TV for a while now. The episode actually made it seem like he had never watched TV at all before which is intriguing. Let’s make a note of it in case it comes up again. What was Ron’s childhood like? And what we see is a weird game show/variety hour hybrid. And I couldn’t help but think that of course this is the sort of programming Ron would gravitate to. Not the news, not scripted mysteries…this. Actually real people. Ron is first and foremost a people watcher. n other words, he’s one of those slightly weird nerds who just likes to try to make up/ figure out everyone’s backstory.
So I figured out the guy was a plant instantly. Not to brag but I’m less gullible than Toto… I didn’t even need a magical app to do it. My theory was that the guy in the hoodie did not know how to read in English at all and they had just agreed ahead of time what he would do after seeing each card. And that the agreement after card three was for him to stab himself in the neck with a little needle. I thought the other guy, the mentalist, would have simply lied to him and said it was a tranquilizer or something fairly harmless of the sort that would make it appear as if his body was going through real physical changes and make the whole trick way more impressive. That way both of them would gain more fame which would lead to more money. Win – win. They may have even practiced and the big guy just changed it out for poison today.
I have to say, the solution proposed by the show is just as good but not better than my guess in my opinion. And I think the death/sleep thing was a bit convoluted but also fun to see so I guess it ends up as a net positive. One of the things I really appreciate about Ron Kamonohashi is that for the most part, motives are really simple and straightforward in this show. No long-lost twin coming back to avenge their half-uncle for getting his heart broken in the 1940’s.. Money, sex simple opportunity, or self-defense. The sort of thing that makes it very easy to understand why the killers are doing what they’re doing. And by keeping motives down to earth, you can get a bit more crazy with the execution without overloading the entire show.
In short, I’m saying I like the show!
The big seed planted this week though was about Ron’s…power. It’s the one element that’s really out there. Almost like one supernatural thing in a show that’s otherwise cooky but grounded in the mundane. What is this thing Ron does to killers anyway? This week, it’s strongly suggested that it’s some type of very powerful form of hypnosis or suggestion. And I think this is what’s going to bring Sensei Mofu back into the story. Can’t wait!