Shizuka ItouTakehito KoyasuAkira IshidaTetsuya Kakihara
Beautiful Bones: Sakurako's Investigation
Episode 1 also reviewed here: Anime 1st episodes 2015: B
Also known as: Sakurako-san no Ashimoto ni wa Shitai ga Umatteiru
Medium: TV, series
Year: 2015
Director: Makoto Kato
Writer: Takayo Ikami, Takao Yoshioka
Original creator: Shiori Ota
Actor: Junya Enoki, Shizuka Itou, Akira Ishida, Ayaka Imamura, Hiroki Takahashi, Masako Isobe, Takehito Koyasu, Tetsuya Kakihara
Keywords: anime, detective
Country: Japan
Language: Japanese
Format: 12 episodes
Url: http://www.animenewsnetwork.com/encyclopedia/anime.php?id=17083
Website category: Anime 2015
Review date: 14 October 2016
Sakurako-san no Ashimoto ni wa Shitai ga Umatteiru
It's a detective show where the main character, Sakurako, is a beautiful misanthrope who loves skeletons, sweets and being blunt to people. People have said that it's a lot like Bones (the American TV series with David Boreanaz), although apparently Sakurako's warmer than Temperance Brennan. I wouldn't know, but I pass on the information anyway in case it helps.
I wasn't keen on ep.1. I hadn't warmed to Sakurako. I kept going, though, and found myself warming up to ep.2. It had strong emotion and our heroes saving a baby's life. Now I've reached the end, I think it's an excellent show and I'm very happy to have seen it.
Despite those first impressions, Sakurako's great. She can be insufferable and she fully earns that bit where someone tries to stab her. She has zero tolerance for fools, which is entertaining when she meets someone who deserves it. "This place makes me ill." However she's also dry, amusing and super-intelligent, regularly mending hearts and saving lives. She can get upset. Her skeleton fetish is more than a little ghoulish, but she's not hurting anyone and she can deduce amazing things from a skull or a finger. She also cares a lot about Shoutarou, her long-suffering assistant and minder. There's no romance. (She has a never-seen fiance.) However there's a lot of love between them, albeit platonic and frequently exasperated.
Shoutarou's in his last year of high school. He's Sakurako's Watson, although on one occasion he pulls off some detective work nearly on her level. He follows her around and gets patronised a lot, despite at times being her surrogate mother. (Even a classmate of his, Yuriko, seems to see him mostly as a Sakurako communication device.) He's a terribly nice chap and I liked him a lot. Sakurako calls him "boy". They're funny together.
I enjoy the fact that the show's not a murder factory. Sakurako's cases are perfectly capable of revealing that no one got killed, that stranger wasn't planning to commit suicide and everything's right with the world here and now.
The cast are a lot of fun, but of course it's also all about the detective stories. They're good too. They can be heartwarming or horrifying. Some are happy and some are sad. Someone's usually died, but this needn't have been foul play and sometimes Shoutarou's friend is just a schoolgirl who wants to know the truth about her late grandmother.
I don't really have much more to say. It's excellent. Some shows are just solid all round. Intelligent writing, high production values and a varied and satisfying collection of stories. Oh, and the cast. Sakurako and Shoutarou are endlessly entertaining, but I also liked Yuriko and their discreetly broken schoolteacher, Itsuki. It's an elegant show. This is the kind of anime you could recommend to people who don't normally like anime. Well worth a look.
"I'm acting just like an emotional, foolish human being!"