Article first published as Manga Review: Case Closed Volume Seven by Gosho Aoyama on Blogcritics.
Case Closed Volume Seven is a manga by Gosho Aoyama, and it was published in North America by Viz Media in 2005. The series is rated “T+” for older teens; personally, I would agree with this rating.
Jimmy Kudo is a high school detective who was shrunk down to his first grade self after he was caught by a crime organization and forced to take an experimental poison. Jimmy had been left for dead, so the criminals have no idea that he is actually still alive. Jimmy has taken on the identity of Conan Edogawa and claims to be a relative of family friend Dr. Agasa. As Conan, Jimmy goes to live with his friend, Rachel Moore, who is unaware that Conan and Jimmy are the same person. Rachel’s father, Richard, is a bumbling private investigator, so Jimmy hopes to be able to use this as a resource to track down the crime organization and find a way to return to his normal self. As Conan, Jimmy is able to covertly help Richard solve the cases that happen in the Case Closed series.
There are a total of three mysteries that appear in Volume Seven. The first mystery is the resolution to the mystery about the murder of a famous writer that appeared at the end of Volume Six. This mystery is resolved in the first chapter of this volume, and there is no real difference between the telling of this story between the manga and anime tellings of it. Since I’d already seen this mystery in the anime, I already knew what was coming.
The second mystery makes up the bulk of the content of Volume Seven. Richard receives a mysterious letter and a payment for his services from a resident of Moon Shadow Island. Richard, Rachel, and Conan travel to the island to try to figure out what’s going on. They quickly learn that the individual who supposedly sent the letter died 12 years earlier in his burning house while playing Beethoven’s “Moonlight Sonata” on the piano.
During the course of this storyline, three people are murdered. There are several layers and plot twists involved in this mystery, and it really keeps the reader guessing almost right up to the point where the answers are revealed. Since I had already seen the anime adaptation of this particular mystery, I already knew what to expect; however, I think readers who have not had any prior experience with this particular storyline will be caught off-guard by some of the twists in the story.
The final mystery sees a young woman come to the Moore Detective Agency, claiming that Jimmy Kudo is her boyfriend, and that she’s looking for him. At that moment, Dr. Agasa calls, and Conan makes it appear that it was Jimmy on the line. An upset Rachel demands to go with the young woman to her home in order to see Jimmy, and she drags Conan along with her. It turns out that things aren’t what they seem, and Conan figures out that the young woman is trying to get help for a crime without actually contacting the police. Unfortunately, this storyline is not resolved in this volume, so you have to read Volume Eight in order to find out what happens next.
This is another story that was adapted for the Case Closed anime series. Like the majority of the stories that were adapted from the manga, the anime’s telling of these events is rather faithful to what is seen in the manga.
Even though I already have familiarity with these stories from watching the Case Closed anime series, I enjoyed being able to see how they appeared in the original manga. Aoyama has continued to tell some compelling stories with these mysteries, and I believe that Case Closed is a series that could appeal to both manga readers and to non-manga readers who enjoy mystery stories.
I wrote this review after reading a copy of Case Closed Volume Seven that I checked out through the King County Library System.