UN-GO Episode 1: Murder at the Ball

By this week, I’ve gone through the first episode of most anime. The one really impressed me was Guilty Crown, but strangely the one I’m curious about the most is UN-GO. I think it offers an interesting look at detective series. The first case was rather simple, almost too easy. But that’s okay. I have faith that there are more exciting cases coming up later from this show.

The first case was about Kaoru Kanou, a public figure. He held a ballroom event in which Yuuki Shinjurou, also known as The Defeated Detective and Kaishou Rie, the daughter of Shinjurou’s rival, were invited. There were speculations about his possible arrest at the hands of authorities during the event because he was accused of corruption. Instead of getting arrested however, he was stabbed from behind when he was set to give a speech. Nothing too dramatic happened. The whole case was executed in a very linear manner so it was easy to guess who is the murderer. The only thing left to uncover is the motive, which I think is both ridiculous and sad at the same time.

Since it only debuted this week, I have reasons to believe that it’s just a warming up episode. It’s the usual routine – showcasing the main characters and the roles they’ll be playing in future episodes. I particularly like how the characters’ names were displayed alongside with their designations. I think it’s a clever way to introduce a character. That way, we don’t have to wonder who is who. Speaking of characters, Yuuki Shinjurou despite been given such a lousy nickname, he’s actually the smart detective. His rival, Kaishou Rinroku, who is glorified by others doesn’t seems to be too impressive. Based on what I understand from the conversation Rie has with Shinjuro – he usually makes the wrong deductions. However, I adore his set of gadgets.

The one thing that sparked my interest the most is Inga, the strange boy/girl who follows Shinjurou around. He/she appears to be normal (assuming she’s Inga) at the beginning of the episode, and then suddenly he/she turned into a little boy who can transform into an adult woman, who doesn’t even share the same appearance as the woman earlier. Huh. What’s more, he/she has the abilities to force you to answer his/her one question. Amazing. What I like to know more is what exactly happened at the start of the episode, who exactly is Inga and what’s up with his/her strange abilities.

Besides the case and characters, I’d like to draw attention to the style, OP and ED of UN-GO. I quite like the style it has – the detailed backdrops, unusual character designs, rich colors and whatnot. The only complain I have is most of the characters look similar. As for the OP and ED, I like the animation style, the retro vibe it has.

Although the first episode isn’t as exciting as I hope it would be, I feel that UN-GO is experimenting with something different. Now I don’t know what exactly is it but I’d like to see this delivered as intended. So stay tuned.

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16 thoughts on “UN-GO Episode 1: Murder at the Ball

  1. Shame the show doesn’t look like the opening or ending, but well, the actual show is not bad in terms of visuals. Just not exciting. I do like the style of the characters though.

    Can’t help but be curious because of Noitamina and Bones, but I seriously hope they don’t skip the character introductions for the sake of the movie prequel.

    • I hope the future episodes would be more exciting than this first one. It has potential I guess or maybe I’m just plain curious how this will turn out.

      For detective series, as long as I know who are the main characters, the roles they play and the cases are built up nicely without it being too predictable, I’m happy.

  2. Ah, I don’t think the characters really look all that similar… Well, most have thin, jagged heads I suppose, but they all have rather bizarre, unique character designs (IMO). The bigger problem was just the sheer number of characters thrown at us all at once, though I suppose that’s fairly inevitable if you want a full mystery story with multiple possible culprits in just twenty minutes. It might’ve been better to have a two-parter to start out with.
    That said, it was a really weird first episode–one that felt familiar and strange at the same time. I didn’t really get a feel for the main characters in this episode unfortunately, but the setting is intriguing enough that I want to watch another episode or two and see where it goes.

    • I thought most of them share the same shape of face and eyes. Anyway, it’s not really a problem because I can still differentiate them. I agree that they have bizarre and unique character designs. I like the style actually.

      I would also say it’s inevitable because like you’ve said, they are trying to present and solve a case within a short amount of time. Besides, I think some characters are only created to throw us off to a different direction, although the attempt was to no avail. Personally, I think the first episode’s pacing was a bit too rushed. Everything happened too quickly. It felt familiar maybe because we’ve seen this type of case a thousand times elsewhere.

  3. I think, for this show, I’m gonna wait until a few episodes come out before watching it. The beginning part seemed rather confusing, and the later episodes may help flesh it out a little.

  4. I was also curious about what this show offers. Unfortunately, as a detective plot anime, it failed to appeal me. The mystery is too obvious, it didn’t surprise me. However, I like the art especially the ED song.

    • Very obvious isn’t it? I hope they’re using this case only to introduce some of the main characters and that it’ll have better cases in coming episodes.

      I like the art style Un-Go has. It’s quite different from the usual anime I follow.

  5. Its an interesting take to the mistery genre, a bit different from the other series. I wonder how this whole set-up will progress with this small number of episodes available…

  6. 1st Episode didn’t really go that well.
    Mystery was obvious. Unlike Detective Conan, it wasn’t obvious and it was definitely hard to guess. I do like the art style of this anime. I wish, the graphic could be the same as the opening. The only thing that keeps me going is Inga. As for the character introduction, it is really poor. The only way we will know how Shinjirou and Inga team-up would be in the prequel which will be released in November. I will give this anime a few more episodes. Will definitely drop this if it continues to be the same.

    • I think if Rie didn’t sort of faint after Kanou’s wife gave her a drink, it wouldn’t be as obvious.

      Yeaps, that’s right. As you have said it, we all are interested in knowing more about Inga. =)

  7. I really hope that this becomes a nice mystery style anime. I really enjoyed the first episode as well, and yeah, Guilty Crown is like, the fan-favorite now ^^

    • I know! I really hope this will become a really nice detective series.

      Haha, I’m not surprised Guilty Crown attracted lots of attention. The first episode was really good.

  8. UN-GO looked interesting, but I was a bit upset with the way the case was solved. The way Inga just made the wife cough up the truth just made it too easy. I would’ve liked to have seen them solve the mystery using deductive reasoning instead.

    • The first case was a bit too easy for those who are familiar with mystery cases I think. But the recent cases have been interesting and I can only hope it continues to be better as the series progresses.

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