Case Closed: Episode 994 – “Kyogoku Makoto the Understudy (Part Two)”

The episode started with enough of a recap to remind the audience of the important events that transpired in the previous episode.

As the investigation continues into the death of the actor at the on location shoot, the possibility of hiding a device in a small container (such as a medicine container) is brought up. But it’s quickly pointed out just how many of the actors and staff have small containers, so this possibility seems like a dead end. However, Sera decides to use this as an opportunity to start asking questions about Shinichi and when Ran has seen him recently (he’ll seem weak and pale at first, but suddenly starts looking and acting better). Sera starts asking if Ran has seen Shinichi take anything, and this eventually leads to Sera to insinuating that Shinichi and Conan have never been seen together. I appreciate how this was used as an opportunity to use footage from previous episodes as flashbacks. For me personally, it was nice to see footage from one of the episodes in Case Closed that I have never seen, since it’s in the block of episodes that have never been made legally available in the United States in any way, shape, or form. I had no idea about the special Conan disguise that was made for Ai, so it could look like Shinichi and Conan are seen together.

After Sera’s line of questioning gets shot down, she returns her focus to the mystery at hand. At one point, Inspector Megure is so frustrated that he gets this look of agony on his face. Even under the circumstances, it was kind of amusing to see the normally level-headed Megure wearing this kind of expression.

But a new wrinkle appears after one of the ADs brings back drinks for everyone. One of the other crew members, who seems to have figured out who the culprit is, suddenly keels over after having some of his drink. It appears he was poisoned, although by the end of the episode, it isn’t clear exactly how the poison was put into his drink. But when his pockets are emptied out, an important clue is revealed through a toy he had in his pocket. Who says that “dead men tell no tales”?

Right at the end of the episode, Sera sneakily gets Conan to admit to her that he’s really Shinichi. Oops! The preview for the next episode seems to focus on Conan worrying that Sera will try to ask Ran and Sonoko more weird questions about Shinichi and Conan.

This is one of those rare storylines in the more recent years of Case Closed that is longer than two episodes. I had a feeling this was a story from the manga, since Sera is in it (since I have yet to see Sera appear in an episode that comes across as anime-only “filler”). But seeing her snooping around and asking questions about Shinichi in this episode helped me to confirm my suspicions that this story arc is likely a “canon” story from the manga.

So now there are two cases to solve, and it appears the first murder can’t be solved with figuring out who murdered the second victim. I can’t wait to see how this story unfolds next week.

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