Heaven’s Memo Pad


aka¬†“Kami-sama no Memo-chou”
Genre: Detective
Score: Very Good

Narumi gets mixed up in some dangerous events, but his friend at the gardening club introduces him to a detective agency made entirely of NEETs*: a shut-in geek, a gambler, a weapons nut and a playboy. They all meet at a ramen shop, and solve cases around Tokyo in their own way.

( * “Not in Education, Employment or Training”; in other words, a loser)

This is an unusual look at the real underside of modern Japan: drug addiction, teenage prostitution, immigrants and yakuza. Though the depth and realism of the cases varies, they are mostly depicted quite well. The people involved are generally not evil, but have reasons and failings of their own.

The leader of the group is a little girl called Alice (real name Yuko), whose IT skills allows her to track down forgotten information. Her setup of monitors is really quite impressive. She rarely leaves her room (only ever doing so in the presence of hundreds of teddy bears) and drinks only Dr Pepper. Though he starts as a typical weak male lead – or rather, the everyman to the company of strange NEETs – Narumi quickly steps up into being decisive and insightful.

The anime so far appears to only cover the first of 8 books, so there’s a good chance this will become a long-running series.