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Cuticle Detective Inaba The Complete Collection (anime review)

Cuticle Detective InabaTitle: Cuticle Detective Inaba The Complete Collection

Director: Susumu Nitsukawa

Studio: ZEXCS

Author: Mochi

U. S. Distributor: Sentai Filmworks / Section 23

Release Date: April 29th, 2014

Format: Blu-ray / 12 Episode / 300 Minutes

Genre: Comedy, Parody, Absurdity

Age Rating: TV 14

Overall Personal Rating: B-

Synopsis:

In a world where half-human, half-animal chimeras live and work alongside normal people, there are sure to be a few bad apples in the bunch. Unfortunately, criminals who are only half-human means there are often non-human clues that leave the police stumped. That’s where lone-wolf detective Hiroshi Inaba comes in. He’s literally part wolf and has the amazing ability to extract critical information just by examining or tasting a sample of someone’s hair!

Of course, that ability has also resulted in Inaba having a little bit of a hair fetish, but that doesn’t seem to be a problem for his two assistants. Well, at least the cross-dressing one isn’t complaining much. And it’s nothing compared to the strange tastes of Inaba’s nemesis, the omnivorous, half-goat crime boss Don Valentino, who has an appetite for green legal tender instead of tender young greens!

Inaba’s sworn to cut Valentino out of the criminal flock before the Don can wolf down more ill-gotten dough, but he’s going to have to chew his way through a lot of evidence to get his goat. Can sheer dogged detective work put the baaaaad guys behind bars?

 

Commentary:

In a long line of parody series, Cuticle Detective Inaba comes out of the shoot blasting away with absurdity and parody. The silliness that ensues sticks with the series throughout. The rather odd group of characters that take us through this rather crazy show are at the core of the absurd humor and constantly prove to be over the top at every turn. This over the top approach is both the strength and weakness of the series. With the show being all about the humor I would say that it hits a home run because it is funny. But, on the other side of the coin this pushing the envelop of silliness also makes it very hard to stay with the series for any period of time. I enjoyed it and grew very tired of it at the same time. I know that this seems impossible, but after just a few minutes of the switch back and forth from real world and chibi world along with the change from the plot driven story to just flat out stupidity also tired met out.

As for the quality of the animation, I can say that ZEXCS does their standard fin job of bringing us a visually entertaining show. The look and feel of the animation styles fits perfectly with the series, but as with the writing and series itself the animation betrays the viewer by making it just a little too schizophrenic even with the humor being the star of the show.

Overall Grade: B-

There are plenty of other parodies out there that stand high in their way to both hit the high marks without being overly schizophrenic. If you look back at series like Stg. Frog or Lucky Star you get a good feeling of how this balance is created. Cuticle Detective Inaba brings home the humor so many fans love. So, if you are looking for a good laugh without any real emotional connection this series is for you.

 

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