Home > Episode Review, Kami-sama no Memo-chou > Kami-sama no Memo-chou 11: Every Holmes needs his Moriarty

Kami-sama no Memo-chou 11: Every Holmes needs his Moriarty

“Tell your Alice this: Try and find me. Catch me if you can. If you don’t, I might just fly away.”

But try as he might, Hakamizaka Shirou is no Professor Moriarty.

Oh, he’s clever, I give him that. University graduate, excellent grades.

The genetic engineering paper he published is a very obvious homage to the original Moriarty’s “treatise on the binomial theorem”, both of which were intended to show that their authors were legitimate intelligentsia.

And the fact that he managed to produce the same shared hallucination – those ‘pink angel wings’ – among a variety of subjects indicates that he has somehow managed to stimulate the visual cortex of each person’s brain in the same way, with an amazing degree of accuracy.

Which, as far as I know, is impossible. What with the delicate chemical balances that vary between person to person, and what with inherent genetic dispositions such as allergies or external influences such as medication that could counteract/exacerbate the Angel Fix effects. Maybe Shirou is really selective with his clients.

It also intrigues me on what would happen if the clients have never seen wings before. I’m guessing that the way the Angel Fix works is that Shirou managed to identify, isolate and consistently replicate the same electrical impulses that fire when the brain processes the image/word/idea of pink/angel/wings – which is impossible, if I haven’t mentioned it already – so I have to wonder what happens when a brain has a different concept of angels or wings. Clow help him if his client’s colour-blind.

So yes, I’ll concede that he’s clever. Okay, he’s a genius.

But it’s not his knowledge that really concerns me.

It’s his depressing lack of both business and criminal acumens.

Any virus knows that if they kill their hosts too quickly, they’ll never have a chance to spread. And without spreading, all you’ll get are maybe a dozen dead bodies and an extinct virus.

Apparently Shirou isn’t aware of that same principle, genius and all. His drug is already killing people, which creates 2 sets of problems.

1) He’s got one less customer, meaning less profit. Which will result in even lesser customers after new potential clients find out about the side-effects, and thus lesser profit, and so on until his drug’s and his own credibility are gone and he goes bankrupt.

2) People dying tends to attract police attention. And while the police haven’t been seen in this anime at all, that’s no grounds to be looking for trouble.

Either way, it suggests that Shirou is too stupid to dilute his narcotics, or that he’s too stupid to produce a diluted version with the same effects but no death. The latter case can also imply that he’s impulsive – he’s rushing an imperfect drug to the streets with no heed to the consequences – which is another usually fatal criminal flaw.

Plus there’s the fact that he called Narumi using Ayaka’s mobile and SIM card.

Okay, so it’s not really Shirou’s fault, it’s more of Toshi’s. But either way the fact that Shirou is willingly living with the wreck that is Toshi demonstrates another failing in his mental processes. Maybe he’s trying to prove that he’s ‘edgy’ and ‘willing-to-take-risks’.

Which also shows that he’s an idiot. True criminals don’t prove anything to themselves or anybody, they minimize risk and stay low profile. And the next thing you know they’re either living the life as a drug baron or a Fortune 500 CEO.

Anyway, if Narumi had any sense, he’d rush to Alice and get her to trace the mobile immediately.

This does show that Alice is rather foolish as well. In the two days she’d had since Ayaka’s jump, she’d been investigating. Even if she assumed that the then-unknown criminal was smart enough to dispose of the phone, she should have traced it anyway. Or maybe she just didn’t think of it.

Of course, there is a possibility that Shirou is smarter than he appears, and that – to use the iconic phrase – there’s a larger game afoot.

But I can’t really think of many scenarios that would fit his current modus operandi.

If he’s trying to gain the attention of some weapons developer or secret governmental interrogation project, there are better ways of going about it. His credentials alone would have gotten him an interview at least, and then closed drug trials could commence from there.

If he’s trying to wipe out the drug addicts, the beggars, or whichever group of socially ostracised peoples that he despises, he should have created a drug with stronger withdrawal symptoms or provided it in precise amounts so as to increase his clients’ drug resistance. Then he can unleash a final concentrated dosage once the Angel Fix has reached market saturation.

Maybe he’s simply testing his drug outside of laboratory settings, and his entire biological history and records have already been falsified and once he has his data, he’ll change identities and move on. Which means he really is smarter than he appears.

That last one is the only plausible scenario I can think of. I guess that’s why I’m not a criminal genius.

But he’s foiled by real life programming once more – he can’t possibly have that deep of a criminal foundation with only one episode to go. But even without the benefit of episode listing, all the flaws pile up and Shirou is still not the diabolical arch-enemy that I wanted him to be.

I really hope he’s not doing this ‘to prove a point’. True criminal masterminds have actual goals such as a certain amount of wealth or political influence. If Shirou’s motivated by anger, or vengeance, or some arbitrary emotion or vague stab at ideology – Alice really shouldn’t waste too much of her time on him.

Other musings

“Your arms, your legs, your ears and eyes, your throat, your nails and teeth and tongue, down to the last drop of your blood; All of them now belong to me.”

Only Alice could deliver that line with a modicum of chastity. Pretty much any other female character would have made it sound like an insanely kinky marriage proposal or worse.

Although I could imagine Blood-C’s Saya saying this while trailing blood with her sword. Insanely kinky to insanely insane just like that.

I was right! Although I still can’t remember where I read my spoiler from – the one that she’d end up in a coma and lose some of her memories.

I’m betting that at the end of the final episode, she’ll open her eyes and provide that plot-device miracle that is just begging to happen.

Also, somewhat related to the case, I think Ayaka was under the effects of Angel Fix when she jumped, just as Shirou said – but not because she took the drug, but because as she was destroying the flowers.

In real life, the fumes of burning poppies can produce narcotic effects. I doubt Ayaka was actually burning those genetically modified Papaver bracteatum, but maybe because it’s been modified, the simple act of snapping the stems or maybe the scent itself already releases the narcotic.

Being in an enclosed greenhouse, she’d have easily inhaled the stuff in sufficient quantities to get affected.

I was taken aback when Alice evaluated her NEET detective trio as “scalars” – implying that they’re purposeless and need constant hand-holding.

I did expect a frank opinion from her, but in the face of all the blatant favouritism she shows Narumi, it was quite irksome.

The ending could be a trainwreck, but at least we get to see Alice in her Gothic Lolita outfit once more. Some cause for celebration there.

  1. September 18, 2011 at 3:43 pm

    I don’t think that Hakamizaka is being presented as Alice’s archenemy, I think he is just a one-time rival who will be dealt with at the end of this arc. In his defense, Toshi has been taking Angel Fix for months and he is still alive. Ayaka almost died because she jumped off the building, not for the drug. The dude we saw allucinating isn’t necessarily dead.

    Considering that Toshi has Ayaka’s phone, most probably he made her take the drug and then she trailed off the building in her confused state. My hypothesis is that it wasn’t a suicide attempt after all, just an accident.

  2. JohnnyYandere
    September 18, 2011 at 5:41 pm

    If I remember correctly, Hakamizaka is the only villain who challenged Alice directly. His late entry into the anime could be another reference to Moriarty, who was only mentioned late into the Sherlock Holmes stories – which also hints at the whole archenemy thing. He may actually be a recurring antagonist in the light novels, but I can’t confirm that.

    Anyway, in the previous episode, Yondaime did mention that people have died – which implies that directly or indirectly, Angel Fix will cause death. I’m not sure how Toshi plays into this, since I doubt he was a former friend or classmate. But there’s a chance he’s just being used for human testing and Hakamizaka’s already giving him reduced doses or he’s built up quite a substantial tolerance in those preceding weeks.

    I do agree that I doubt that Ayaka’s jump was a suicide attempt. But I don’t think Toshi is that heartless to make his own sister take a drug. Or that Ayaka would willingly do it. Hence my greenhouse-is-filled-with-hallucinogens hypothesis.

    The phone is an annoying question though. I thought maybe Ayaka gave him the phone so she’d be able to contact him, although in the previous episode he did call her directly. Alternatively he kept an eye on her, saw her fall off the roof, used her phone to call for the ambulance then ran off, and took the phone with him unintentionally.

  3. Tyler Junky
    September 19, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    I really have to give you kudos on this one. I thought since you had the time and desire to review individual episodes that you didn’t focus on well… other things such as the science of plants and how they mutate. But I was wrong. This was insightful. Your reviews are impressing me more and more. I’m starting to wonder if I can even compete. I never even read Holmes. ._.

    And I found my self starring at the screen when Alice had Narumi make the pledge. I don’t know it was just…creepy. But that’s who Alice is. A cute little moe girl who can me adorable as well as creepy

    Oh and I’m curious as to how you get the light novels. Are they out in English or are you reading fan translations?

    • JohnnyYandere
      September 19, 2011 at 11:44 pm

      Heh. The quality of my reviews aren’t consistent. It really depends on my mood. Sometimes I’m just rushing out a decent blob of text, other times I latch onto one aspect of the episode I like/dislike and analyse the crap out of it, but my main aim is to be both readable and entertaining.

      But you shouldn’t worry about competition or anything like that. I may have read Holmes, but I’m sure you’ve also got your own unique experiences that I don’t have. Sure, even among the HIMYO writers we like to bash each other about viewcounts, but ultimately we’re all anime fans and we just want to raise awareness or vent/enthuse about our favourites.

      Oh, I wish Alice was a little more creepy. Right now she’s just an overly verbose cute little girl. Whose verbosity makes me want to punch her in the face. She’s not that cute.

      As for the light novels, I actually buy them. Generally, when I find a series that I like, I’ll go buy their manga/light novels even if I can’t really read them yet – I did that K-On! and OreImo.

      But I got volumes 1-6 for KamiMemo on impulse after the first episode and held off on 7 and 8 after I realized that the quality wasn’t consistent. My Japanese isn’t actually past preschool level at the moment, but I can generally infer how the stories progress based on select sentences and of course, the light novel illustrations.

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