Author: Kozawa Ryouta
Illustrator: Kazu Aki
Format: Drama CD
After a long break, really long, I’ve finally gathered enough energy to listening to CD and writing reviews again. The first CD I pick to review is a suspense mystery which has no H but a very rich plot. In fact, the script won the 50th Buruli Bonaward. In addition to a novel and movie, there is also a drama CD released by Momogre and the latter is the subject of my review.
A year ago, net idol Kisaragi Miki ( Horie Yui) committed suicide. A year later, five of her fans gathered at Iemoto’s house ( Ono Daisuke) to commemorate her. The members include:
Iemoto, a police officer;
Ono Daisuke ( Sugita Tomokazu), a well-mannered young man;
Snake ( Miyano Mamoru), a young man with high tension;
Yasuo ( Nakamura Yuuichi), a young man who seems to be very concerned with following the crowd;
Ichigo Musume ( Fujiwara Keiji), a middle-aged and weird man.
A funny note about the character names is that the handle name “Ono Daisuke” is different in the drama CD than in the movie. In the movie, it’s Oda Yuuji but in the drama CD, they changed it to Ono Daisuke to tease on the poor Ono Daisuke (seiyuu). They even emphasized the “famous seiyuu” Ono Daisuke , very funny. The gathering began with Iemoto showing off the others his precious collection of all the pics with and stuff with Miki, including a letter she wrote and addressed to him. The gathering took off in a warm atmosphere but everything changed when Ono Daisuke suggested that Miki’s death was not suicide but murder. At first the members were reluctant to discuss the issue but gradually all joined the discussion and slowly, their real identities begin to emerge.
The following contains spoilers to the story and is only intended for those who want to know the story better. The text is written in white color, please highlight to read.
Ono Daisuke starts off by explaining why he thinks Miki’s death is not suicide. First, judging from Miki’s personality, there is no reason why she has to choose to burn herself if she just wants to die. Setting the house on fire causes trouble for her neighbors as well (nearly burn the apartment next door) and Miki could have used alternative methods if she simply wanted to kill herself. Also, Ono explained that Miki had been stalked and attacked by a stalker before, the stalker also broke into her house and took away one item. Ono then accused Ichigo Musume of being the stalker. Ichigo Musume admitted he peaked and even went into Miki’s house but he wasn’t the stalker and definitely didn’t kill her. Ono phoned the police department and confirmed that Ichigo Musume was being investigated by the police at the time and couldn’t be the murderer. The deduction process continued and this time, it was revealed that Snake actually also entered Miki’s house! He worked at the Lucky?Lucky shop and Miki often went to buy stuff from them. She ordered bottles of various types of oil because she couldn’t distinguish the liquids very well. Snake delivered the bottles to her apartment and she made him tea but she did not get further into the house than the kitchen. Then came Ono Daisuke himself, actually he was Debu-chan (little fat guy), MIki’s manager. He loved Miki and wanted to know why she died. Since he was so stressed, he lost a lot of weigth and so the others didn’t recognize him. Then came Yasuo, who wasn’t just an ordinary fan but actually Miki’s childhood friend and the guy who made a promise to marry Miki when the grow up. Finally, Ichigo Musume is no ordinary hentai oyaji but really Miki’s papa who went to her house because he wanted to see how his daughter was living. After a long process of deduction, the group came to the conclusion that everything was just a tragic accident.
On the night of her death, Miki wanted to kill a cockroach so she rang Yasuo for advice. Yasuo recommended Miki to pour orange marmalade detergent on the floor. However, after 20 minutes, she still couldn’t kill the cockroach, so she went to bed with her candles still burning. She mistook salad oil for orange marmalade detergent because the bottle looked similar and she couldn’t tell the liquids apart. She wanted to leave a message telling Yasuo she couldn’t defeat the cockroach but instead dialled the wrong number. So the message went to her manager Ono Daisuke and was later mistaken by the police and the mass media as her suicide note. The candle fell to the floor following an earthquake and spread quickly because of the oil. When she realized her house was alit, she rushed to the place where she kept all those fanletters Iemoto sent her because she felt the letters supported her and she valued them over her own life.
Once the mystery was solved, the guys watched a video with Miki singing and they joined in, then they left Iemoto’s house without realizing there’s still one mystery left… the identity of the stalker who stalked Miki before she died.
This story reminds me of Anthony Berkeley’s “The Poisoned Chocolate Case” because the whole story only focused a group of people deducing a case. The script has a nice balance of humor and suspense and the pacing is very good. Probably the most interesting part is the ending, which is not hard to guess if you take a deeper look at the real identity of each character. With regard to acting, I think everyone’s done a great job, especially Fujiwara whose tone changes as the identity of his character clarifies . Nakamura also shocks me a little because his initial high tone voice is so high I must admit I didn’t recognize him immediately. Still, I think Yasuo is a bit miscast because Nakamura sounded a bit unnatural when he spoke with that tone and tension…made me feel like he’s stretching the limit of his voice. I think Kakihara, Ueda Yuuji, etc. may have been a better choice… hmm. Sugita’s Ono is quite sexy and Ono‘s Iemoto is in his calm and intelligent form. However, I think if Ono’s voice is a bit “darker”, it maybe even more interesting. Spoiler: He lacks the darkness and wildness of a killer. Finally, Mamo is completely amazing! He’s like chorise personality in Gundam 00’s drama CD , mega high tension and mega cute . Rather than the cool “Light” type of chara, I think he’s better with this kind of hetare, tennen character .
This is a MUST LISTEN for seiyuu and mystery fans because the plot is well written, the acting is fun, and they even have a free talk session in bonus CD with Ono advertising his Spica-mos CD . I hope more mystery drama will be released in the future as I really love mystery and suspense.