I was hoping for a sequel since the author, Asami Kazushi, wrote a total of 6 books for this particular Murder Analysis Squad series. So when they announced this few months ago, I was really glad. Suishou no Kodou is actually the third book. Not sure why they skipped the second one but maybe they’re picking more interesting stories.
Common question: Do you need to watch Ishi no Mayu before this?
In my opinion, it’s not necessary since the case is different. But of course, it’d be better if you do, because there will be some references that you might not really understand. Also, Toremi will appear again and so I think it’d help a lot if you want to fully grasp their connection. Besides, there are only 5 episodes so you can binge watch it 😄
**Subtitle is available here.
Suishou no Kodou takes place a year after the Toremi case in Ishi in Mayu. The team consists of mostly the same members, except for Kadowaki and Chief Kamiya. A new member, Ishikura has joined the team while Director Teshirogi leads the task force. Toremi from last year’s mortar serial killer case has been sentenced to death. Kisaragi Toko tries to visit him from time to time, only to be refused. At the prison, Toko receives a call from Hayase to inform them about a murder.
The overall vibe of the crime scene named as Kiba case is similar to Ishi no Mayu’s first episode. Instead of mortar, this time, a man, Kiuchi Sashi, has been slashed on the neck, left to bleed, and then red paint is poured all over his head. What makes it even more bizarre is that paint is poured all over the apartment. The signs for ‘correct and wrong’ or Maru to Batsu are written on the front door.
Takano notices the calendar has been torn off even though it’s still September. From the forensic analysis, they obtain several words from the pressure markings. Since ‘library’ is written twice, they decide to head over and while searching the books there, Toko finds a suspicious memo.
Ox is rampaging, caution
Refrain from contact
No problem with document
Takano then realizes they’ve been followed by a man wearing black clothes and mask. He manages to snap a picture of him while at the café but loses him when an explosion occurs nearby.
A bombing happens at the Government Public Relations Center.
During the meeting, they discuss about the man who followed both Takano and Toko, wondering if he is T or the killer. Hayase thinks there’s no need for the killer to take risk and follow the police.
Director Teshirogi says that’s not necessarily true because if the killer is seeking pleasure from the case, then he would usually target the weakest. Hearing that, the team feels the Director is pointing at Toko.
Later that night, Toko and Birukawa are buying dinner at the convenient store. I like how they’re arguing over how much money to spend for dinner, which then leads to Birukawa saying how women are always strict when it comes to money. Toko argues that it’s got nothing to do with gender but reminded of what the Director mentioned earlier.
Birukawa notices a man monitoring them and starts chasing when he runs. The man changes into work clothes and Birukawa loses him.
However, Toko spots him at a dark alley and tries to apprehend him. He aggressively fights back and chokes her when Birukawa finds them. He gets away and back at the station, Hayase orders an alert to find the man.
During the team meeting, Takano realizes the ‘correct and wrong’ signs on the door is actually ‘OX’. This means it’s probably the Ox mentioned in the memo.
Just before midnight, another 2 bombing happens at Starlight Hotel and Toto University. An announcement from Japan Revolution Cooperative Armed Front confirms that the 3 cases are their doing as a retaliation towards the bureaucrats who gives preferential treatment towards the rich. They add that unless they take measures to stop the suffering of the poor, they will continue the bombing.
The next morning, another murder occurs with similar MO as the Kiba case.
Before going into the case, I’d just like discuss or point out several things observed in the pilot.
Firstly, Toko obviously suffers some kind of post-traumatic stress disorder from the bombing last year. We see her losing focus twice and gets easily anxious watching the video of the victims in the current bombing. She also uses the ticking sound of her father’s watch to calm her down. I like that they still show us some flashbacks from her childhood and time spent with her father.
Secondly, there’s a sense of hostility from Director Teshirogi towards her (or female detectives in general). He hints that the case last year is somewhat a disaster for the female detective development programme, which Toko is selected for. Hence, he has asked the higher ups to reconsider the programme. I find it somewhat sweet that Birukawa notices this.
This is probably just me but I feel the pacing is somewhat faster than Ishi no Mayu’s pilot. There are also more things happening, the bizarre murder, bombings, suspicious man following them and confrontation. The cases feel more complicated compared to Toremi case. The reason being, there are now two simultaneous cases – Kiba murder case and the bombings.
Judging from the trailers, it seems we can expect more stuffs and according to the LINE live show they did last week, they did mention that it’s going to be more thrilling than first season. I have a feeling this is going to involve more parties and not just their own team but maybe Public Safety soon.
1. Are the two cases related or totally separate?
2. What does OX mean and why did the killer pour paint all over the crime scene?
3. Who is the man following them, what does he want? Is he the killer or T, or someone else?
4. Is there a bigger picture behind all this, for example political motivation or simply a personal grudge?
Also, the forensic team didn’t find any weapon although in the beginning, we see the killer dropped it on the floor, unless that’s not the weapon (but there’s blood or paint?) or somebody else took it away.
Another thing, why is the killer looking at ‘Cleaning’ on the calendar? What’s the significance of something so ordinary? The police totally dismisses this and focuses on the ‘library’ instead, where they find the memo, either by luck or they’re chasing after something totally unrelated.
What I like so far:
1. The overall vibe reminds me of Ishi no Mayu so there’s some consistency there in terms of direction and cinematography. The background music is still the same, with some updated versions and I like that they’re generous about it this time. The investigation also focuses a lot on forensics and heavy procedural, so it’s interesting to see their discussion and how weaker theories are refuted with plausible explanations.
2. The team is still being fatherly to Toko, especially Takano and Birukawa. Even though Takano still maintains that cool and indifferent character of his, the way he asks Toko about her visiting Toremi shows he is concerned. Birukawa is also being very observant this time with more screen time with her. He’s also being playful and teases Toko several times here.
Things I have mixed feelings about:
1. In first season, Toko faced some harassment for being selected in the female detective development programme, despite having no experience by a senior. That got resolved later but now we have Director Teroshigi whose words seem to hint on Toko being misplaced in the team. I was hoping they would drop this gender inequality here but I guess that’s not gonna happen.
2. Has Toko matured after 1 year? It’s kinda hard to say so judging from some of her actions here. Yes, she did mature after the Toremi case. But again, she makes mistakes here, for example, when she tries to apprehend the suspicious man at the alley. Also, that particular scene shows how weak she is at self-defense. Sigh. But okay, the man definitely has bigger build than her and more aggressive than she expected. Still, that was a major slip up (just like what she did in Ishi no Mayu pilot).
Onto the next episode!