Following a teen detective trapped in a child’s body, Detective Conan is one of anime and manga’s most popular and longest running franchises. At nearly one thousand episodes, the series’ anime adaptation has spawned 23 movies, with the 24th, Detective Conan: The Scarlet Bullet, coming out later this year. Of course, not all of these films can be hits, and Detective Conan has definitely had its fair share of stinkers. Here are the five worst outings for the boy detective.
5. Detective Conan: The Private Eyes’ Requiem
The 10th Detective Conan movie, The Private Eyes’ Requiem, was released in 2006. When Conan, Ran and the Detective Boys go to meet Kogoro Mouri’s new client. They find themselves in a hotel near the Miricle Land theme park.
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The host presents all of the kids and Ran with watches that let them enjoy the park for free, except Conan can’t go. Soon, a mysterious person reveals themselves and informs Conan that the watches are bombs, and if anyone leaves the park, they’ll explode. If Conan and Kogoro can’t solve a mystery for the mystery person, they’ll make the watches explode.
To save the day, Conan has to team up with the Kaito Kid and Conan’s old rival turned friend, Heiji Hattori. Saguru Hakuba from the Magic Kaito franchise also makes an appearance. This film was meant to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Detective Conan and, fittingly, includes many references and callbacks. Alas, this means the film is also unfocused and poorly paced, making the plot is hard to follow at times.
The movie was released on Blu-ray in 2011. However, it has not received an English dub.
4. Detective Conan: Crossroad in the Ancient Capital
Crossroad in the Ancient Capital was the 7th Detective Conan film. In it, Conan is called in to investigate a series of robberies and murders. It turns out that all the victims were part of a crime group called the Genjibotaru. This gets Conan embroiled in a complex plot involving priceless statues, riddles, and secretive gangs and their often hostile inner workings.
While the mystery at the core of the film is cool, Crossroad in the Ancient Capital is often criticized for its slow pacing, especially around the middle act. The film draws from classical myths, and there are long chunks of exposition dedicated to explaining them, which can be hard to get through if this isn’t a topic you’re interested in.
The film wasn’t dubbed into English, but it is available on Blu-ray in Japan and several European territories.
3. Detective Conan: Full Score Of Fear
Full Score Of Fear is the 12th Detective Conan movie. After an explosion at a concert hall, Conan is pulled into an investigation. Someone is murdering and injuring musicians. All of whom are meant to be performing at the opening of the Domoto Concert Hall. This forces Conan and the Detective Boys to protect the remaining members in the hope that they can prevent all of them from being killed, all while trying to solve a sinister bombing plot.
However, frankly, this story is boring. Especially when compared to other films in the franchise, something only compounded by a quite unsatisfying ending. It badly straddles the line between the more grounded and more fantastical cases. Because of this, the film feels like a mediocre version of both formats.
This movie came out on Blu-ray in 2011 but was only released in Japan and a few European territories.
2. Detective Conan: The Eleventh Striker
The 16th film in the franchise, The Eleventh Striker, has a fascinating history. It was created as the public relations manager of Japan’s J-League soccer league Yasuaki Iwasada, was a big Detective Conan fan and friends with Detective Conan producer Michihiko Suwa.
When Conan and the Detective Boys attend an event where J-League players play soccer with kids, they end up being able to watch a game. However, during this game, Kogoro receives a phone call saying that someone has hidden a bomb in the stadium. Conan finds and disarms the bomb, but he has to work out the identity of the bomber before their next attack.
The film features many real-world J-League stars voicing characters, and while it must be fun for fans of the league, if you’re not into Japanese league soccer, you’ll likely struggle to enjoy this film. On top of this, the bombing storyline feels slightly generic. Other Detective Conan films have used the concept in a more exciting way.
Like most of the later Detective Conan films, this film was released on Blu-ray in Japanese and received various European dubs. Alas, no English dub exists.
1. Detective Conan: Jolly Roger in the Deep Azure
Released in 2007, Jolly Roger in the Deep Azure is the 11th film in the Detective Conan franchise. Miwako Sato and Wataru Takagi chase some robbers but, when the robbers get knocked out, one says “Jolly Rodger” and “Koumi Island.” Luckily Kogoro Mouri gets invited to Koumi Island by the head of tourism and he decides to bring Conan, Ran, and the whole gang with him.
The island is full of treasure hunters, and the Detective Boys decide to take part in a scavenger hunt. However, things quickly take a turn for the dark when a diver is killed by a shark. Conan quickly realizes that this is murder and tries to solve the mystery of the island. This film feels like a stereotypical anime filler beach episode stretched out to be feature-length. The plot is bland and dull, and it often feels like it wasn’t originally written as a Detective Conan movie as the mystery element is extremely flimsy.
In 2011, Japan would get a Blu-ray release of this movie, and there are several European dubs of it. But so far, no one has dubbed the film into English or given it an official subtitled release.
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