For most of us, reading manga and watching anime is just a past time, well that’s the same for me. It entertains us and keeps us away from the mundane and boring routines in life. While majority of the people thinks that these otaku items are plainly for leisure and probably not help us be better person, well, I used to agree.
Detective Conan is a manga by Gosho Aoyama (青山 剛昌) serialized in Weekly Shonen Sunday since 1994. The story focuses on the adventures of the protagonist Shinichi Kudo (工藤 新一), whom at the age of 16 is already a child prodigy. He dreams to become a detective like his idol Sherlock Holmes. He’s a son of a famous mystery novelist and a famous actress, Yusaku and Yukiko. The story began when Shinichi encountered two men in black after solving a murder case in an amusement park. Later in the story, it was revealed that these two men were part of a large organization operating on various illegal activities. After knocking him unconscious, they forced him to take a newly developed experimental drug called APTX 4869, which has the effect of killing the person without a trace of the poison. Unknown to them, it has a very rare side effect of shrinking the person and making them 10 years younger. After being shrunk as a kid, in order to conceal his identity and to protect the ones around him, he used the name Conan Edogawa (江戸川 コナン). He abandoned his house and lived with his childhood friend Ran Mouri (毛利 蘭) and her dad Kogoro Mouri (毛利 小五郎) who owns a detective agency. But to bring back his body to normal, he has to find the elusive Organization that shrunk him. In order to do so, he has to raise Kogoro’s detective fame by secretly solving the cases for him in the hopes that one day, they would encounter a case involving the said Organization.
The series’ main selling point is how Shinichi or Conan, in this case, solves every murder case, every mystery, every puzzle and every trick using his curiosity, his wit and his advanced logic that even exceeds the analyzing power of the whole police force. But he has to do it in secret so as not to be found out that he’s really Shinichi, so he gives hint to the police inspectors and even uses Kogoro secretly in order to reveal the secret of murder cases.
After reading around a hundred chapters, somehow I noticed that I have set a different frame of mind. Although most of the time, the story is about a murder case, and the opening of the plot will be too familiar. Usually a case will open up by showing Conan with the other casts such as Kogoro, Ran, Sonoko or the Detective Boys going on some place, meeting the suspects before the crime has been executed. Most of the time, the suspects are part of a single group, they’re either colleagues or guests and most of the time one of them will act suspiciously. And usually a murder will happen in a closed chamber. Conan will therefore look for clues, analyzing the tiniest of details and would not reveal the criminal until he discovers all of the details of the crime scene, and sometimes when a trick has been used to mislead the investigators, he reenacts this by setting up and performing the trick used, demonstrating that seeing is believing. And almost all the time, when it’s time to reveal the murderer, he has to use his tranquilizer watch and shoot Kogoro to make him sleep, then uses his voice changer bow-tie to imitate his voice and explains the case in detail.
As I have said earlier, my mind automatically shifts from a different frame of mind when reading the manga. And thus after reading it too many times, it becomes second nature. And even when not reading the manga nor watching the anime, I usually have this frame of mind on. And due to this I learned a lot and here are some of them:
- The tiny details are important. Most of the time I pay attention to the tiniest of details of the plot. As the police says, “…Everything you say or do can be used against you…” Everything the characters say and their action must be taken into account. And most of the time, the most suspicious characters are not the perpetrators, but the most unlikely suspects are. When I’m taking a stroll outside, I don’t usually pay attention to my surroundings. But now, even when staring blankly outside, I take notice even the tiny details of every passersby, the color of their dress, how big their nose is, the shape of their eyes, their skin complexion, the earrings they’re wearing, etc. I don’t why I’m subconsciously doing it, but I think it’ll be a big help if a murder scene appears instantly. I’ll be a super detective!! nyahaha~ +10 points for my ego!!
- Not everyone is who they seem to be. In Detective Conan, the most unlikely suspects are usually the murderer. Everyone is not who they seem to be. In real life, yes it is true, not everyone is who they say they are. Very handy if you are always a victim of scams or even ponzi schemes.
- Not everything is what they seem to be. Aside from the suspects themselves, objects are usually rearranged and plotted to mislead the investigators in solving the crime. But rest assured, the truth shall prevail! Well, I always apply this in real life. I usually remember how I keep my things, so I should know if someone has been using them without me knowing. Well, remember Yagami Light from Death Note? On how he knew that someone entered his room by inserting a piece of paper between the door? If you do, then you got the point.
- Different people have different behaviors. This part is where the cases vary. Since every characters act differently based on such situations. Each one of us have different habits, different ways to do a single thing. It’s like taking a bath, others wash their faces first, while others, the hair. We mustn’t box other people based on our own behavior. If other people do things differently, then we can only accept it. It’s also like being a chef, if a customer orders a well done steak, we cannot force them to eat a rare steak instead just because we prefer it.
- Treat everyday as if it were your last. In Detective Conan, most murder victims are unaware that they would be killed. In general, nobody knows when we’ll die. We also don’t know when our loved ones will die, nor know exactly how they’ll die. Because of this series, I have fully appreciated the moment I spend with my dear ones, and treat them with uttermost gladness. Gladness that I have lived another minute and shared it with them. I don’t want to regret anything, but I think neither do anyone of us.
All in all, this mystery-packed manga gains its notoriety as having a popular mind-bending, logic-twisting story. But I don’t think the author anticipated that such story can be life-changing and somehow and inspiring in a very different and odd way. I don’t know about you, but what anime or manga has a peculiar effect on your daily lives?