The Millionaire Detective – Balance: UNLIMITED – 1st Episode Review
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Synopsis: Detective Daisuke Kanbe has no problems using his own fortune to solve crimes even if he assesses human lives based on their financial worth. Compassionate Haru Kato sees all life as sacred and is sickened by Daisuke’s materialistic ways. Can they stop butting heads and overcome their opposing world views for the sake of solving the toughest crimes in the precinct? (Official Funimation Synopsis)
1st Episode Review (Warning: Minor Spoilers to Follow):
Tom: The Millionaire Detective can best be described as “What if Bruce Wayne decided not to become a crime fighting vigilante, but instead bought his way into the police and opted to solve crime with the help of his bank account?” I initially thought that as a joke based on the first couple minutes of the show, but after watching the entire premiere episode I think it’s actually a pretty apt description. Millionaire Detective follows
Bruce Wayne Daisuke Kanbe as he buys his way onto the police force and becomes partnered with Lieutenant James Gordon Haru Kato, who holds a much stricter version of justice, where human life is paramount, and money can’t always be the solution. Oh, also, the show should really be Billionaire Detective, if not Trillionaire, as Daisuke seems way richer than the title lets on.
Linny: Putting aside my Husband’s obsession with comparing Millionaire Detective to Batman, you simply can’t deny that there’s a lot of cliches abound. Not only do we have a justice obsessed good guy cop, Haru Kato, who’s so bent on doing what’s right that he ended up being transferred/demoted over it but even our other protagonist is another cliche in his own right; the ridiculously rich, arrogant, cold genius. Having the two paired up and forced to work together despite their very opposing natures, like some odd couple, buddy cop duo isn’t exactly mind-blowing original entertainment either. But still, The Millionaire Detective follows the golden rule with utilizing tropes; give them enough personality, wrapped in engaging narratives and you can make them your own. The only time tropes are bothersome is when there is no true effort behind their inclusion, making them seem like lazy copy-pastes. But The Millionaire Detective is dripping with personality and charisma with even a James Bond-esque opening sequence. It uses stylish animation and touches of comedy to really make itself stand out and liven things up.
Tom: This first episode hits all the marks needed to introduce us to the basic premise, Haru and Kanbe’s inevitable partnering, while throwing in enough quirky character moments, comedy, and overall fun writing to make the journey seem fun and worthy of us tuning in next week. I assume at some point, based on some hints in both the opening and ending credits, we’ll gradually shift gears towards a longer, overarching narrative, one that’ll possibly test the show’s current comedic tone. Until then though The Millionaire Detective feels perfect for viewers who want that odd couple, buddy cop pairing, with a decent amount of clever writing and general comedy to back it up. This show has my vote for the season.
Linny: While I found myself mostly amused by The Millionaire Detective, I did have an issue with the one off villains of this episode. The villains are a straight couple who are trying to rob a store so they can reimburse the cash that the man used up getting with other women. It’s already pathetic that he’s roped the woman he cheated on to bail him out but it gets even worse as he later literally bails on her, abandoning her to what seems like certain death. Yet they get back together in the end because it’s clear the show wants us to treat the guy’s flaws as one big joke. As someone tired of portrayals of toxic or unhealthy relationships as pure gag material, it didn’t sit right with me. While it didn’t ruin the entire show, and is hopefully a one time gag, I felt compelled to bring it up as a personal gripe for anyone else to whom this might matter. Beyond that though, if you’re looking for more shows to follow this season and might be entertained by a somewhat over the top ridiculous take on a detective who uses money to solve all his problems, you might end up finding yourself pretty entertained by The Millionaire Detective. It may not be your favourite of the season but it offers enough entertainment and humour to be worth at least a look in.
The Millionaire Detective – Balance: UNLIMITED is available for streaming via Funimation.com