Japanese Episode 013: “The Bizarre Manhunt Murder Case”
American Episode 014: “Mystery Mastermind”
Original Japanese Air Date: April 22, 1996
Original American Air Date: June 15, 2004
Based On Manga: Files 013-016 (Volume 02, Chapters 04-07)
Next Conan’s Hint: Calculator
Original Version Written By: Yūichi Higurashi
Original Version Directed By: Kenji Kodama
American Version Written By: Eric Vale
American Version Directed By: Christopher Bevins
So here we are at perhaps the most butchered episode adapted from the manga. Any and all references to the Black Organization are removed, Gin and Vodka are nowhere to be found, Akemi Miyano is changed into a completely different person, and worst of all, she isn’t killed. TMS screwed up this story so badly for the anime that they actually had to redo their adaption with episode 128 so that the main plot would make sense. Well, okay, maybe I’m making this adaption sound worse than it is. The majority of this episode is exactly the same as its manga counterpart; only the climax is changed. The changes are so extreme, however, that it nearly makes the quality of the rest of the episode a non-issue.
Having said that, I like this story. Sure, the manga version was better, but the mystery presented is an entertaining missing person case with a few creative twists and a brand new detective gadget: The Criminal Pursuit Glasses. I also really like the detective who follows Kogorō and the others around for the duration of this story, and the biggest laughs for me came from how Conan and Kogorō are just complete douchebags to this guy. Them laughing at his face (which happens more than once in the manga), scolding him when he fails at his job, and Ran causing serious damage to his car are all hilarious to me, and I still have no idea why this guy’s suffering amuses me so much. I almost wish he were a recurring character.
The American version is more of what we’ve come to expect from Case Closed by now, with a handful of minor rewrites, the usual Americanization changes, and a few more major alterations. Casting isn’t too great for the one-shot characters this time, and I’m almost happy that this episode’s manga-to-anime adaption was so poor because Clarine Harp’s voice sounds far too old to be playing the real Akemi Miyano.
Oh, and in case you’re wondering, FUNi didn’t cut out the post-credits epilogue scene of this episode. There was just never one to begin with.
Name Conversion Guide
Masami Hirota = Michelle Hamlin
Kenzo Hirota = Kent Hamlin
Akira Hirota = Aaron Hamlin
Akemi Miyano = Kendra
Okita = O’Brien
Yamagata = Doherty
Kyushu = Calumet
The detective who follows Kogorō and the others around is never given a name in either version of the episode itself, but FUNi’s English ending credits call him “Detective Rye.” An in-joke reference to dub writer Andrew Rye, perhaps? The horse’s name is changed from “Gokai Teio” (“Heroic Emperor”) to “Prosperity.” As a result, the cats’ individual names are changed from the Japanese syllables “Go,” “Kai,” “Tei,” and “O” to English syllables of the word “prosperity.”
The broadcast radius of the Criminal Pursuit Glasses of changed from 20 kilometers to 20 miles in the dub.
Kenzo Hirota’s height in the original version is 170 centimeters (roughly 5’7”). In the dub, this is changed to 5’10.” Later in the episode, Akira Hirota’s height is changed from 190 centimeters (roughly 6’3”) to 6’4”.
A few seconds later…
|Conan (Thinking): “Missing person case? This might take a while…”|
In the Japanese version, Conan actually says that investigating a missing person case isn’t really his area of expertise, which seems to imply that he trusts Kogorō enough to handle the work on his own.
Another few seconds later, Rachel comes into the room and offers Michelle some “coffee.” This is a minor dub error, since the type of cups that she’s holding (in addition to the fact that she’s using a tea kettle) prove that she’s holding tea.
This is another minor change, but after Richard gets off the phone with Michelle, he states that she’s called three times “since noon.” Originally, Kogorō said that Masami has called three times “today.”
Later, after Conan connects the names of Kent’s cats to the racehorse named Prosperity…
|Conan: “One truth prevails.”|
It’s kind of unfitting for Conan to be saying his catchphrase here, because originally, the character doesn’t think he’s figured out anything. In fact, he dismisses the whole name connection as a coincidence until Ran insists that they go to the racetrack.
In the American version, the landlady neglects to mention an important clue: that Kent paid his whole year’s rent with brand new bills.
In what is easily this episode’s silliest rewrite, the pachinko parlor is called a “video arcade.” I have no idea what sort of illusion the dub was trying to create here. I mean, just look at the animation. The building is completely populated by adults. Akira throws Conan out of the building because he’s underage (though it’s implied in the dub that Aaron threw Conan out for accidentally bumping into him). The sign on the building even says “pachinko” in plain English!
If they were worried that pachinko parlors were “too Japanese” for the Americanized version, then why didn’t they just say “casino?”
The stolen one billion yen is changed to one hundred million dollars.
When Conan and Ran are trying to get a cab and the man in line stops them, Ran states that her father is going to be “chopped into pieces and buried alive in the mountains” if they don’t hurry and save him. I’ve always found this story really funny because of the obvious lack of thought that Ran’s put into it (chopped into pieces and then buried alive?). In the dub, Ran’s story is removed and Rachel instead yells at the man for not following the principle of “ladies first.”
Then, once Ran tells the taxi driver to follow the other cab, the driver asks why Ran and Conan don’t want to go to the mountains anymore (you know, to save the father who’s been “buried alive?”). In the dub, the driver scolds Rachel for not saying “please.”
During the “next episode” preview, we’re “treated” to another one of FUNimation’s video edits for the Cartoon Network airing that accidentally made it onto their DVDs. If you look closely, you’ll see that the numbers on the “cnuculator” have been altered.
This change causes a bunch of problems in the dub of the next episode, so stay tuned.
This episode’s preview also gives us a brand new title card, which is retained in the dub.
Since this title card is used from now until the end of the dub (and much, much further past that), I won’t bother mentioning it again.
The removal of an important clue and the pachinko parlor cover-up annoy me, though I can’t help but wonder if the latter was done with a potential non-[adult swim] Cartoon Network airing in mind. That would certainly explain why they called it a “video arcade” to sound more kid-friendly. The other rewrites aren’t cause for too much concern, though it’s sad to lose Ran’s original conversation with the taxi driver, among other lines. See you next time!