Professor Layton's daughter, Katrielle Layton, runs the Layton Detective Agency together with the talking dog Sherl and her assistant Ernest, and solves strange cases that happen everyday in London. Originally, she started the job with the purpose of finding her father, Hershel Layton, who had disappeared suddenly, but her incredible ability to solve puzzles made her well-known and she receives numerous requests.
As someone that has closely followed the Layton games for several years, the idea of a Layton anime series excited me. Though, I was a bit skeptical about watching it at first because I was mixed about 3DS Katrielle Layton game and its lack of proper closure to the main story. I watched and closely followed the series in the second half of 2018. The Katrielle Layton anime slowly became a source of happiness as I binged more of the episodes, eventually following the series week-by-week. This review is written from the perspective of a Layton fan, so some of the things I say might
confuse you a bit.
Layton Mystery Detective Agency definitely was a fun anime throughout its whole run. The anime is basically an episodic mystery anime throughout its run, with occasionally focusing on the bigger mysteries. Katrielle's lovable personality was the main draw of the anime for me. Kana Hanazawa and Katrielle meld together to create a very entertaining anime. Her performance in the Layton anime is probably the most expressive I have ever heard out of all the anime characters she has played. It almost feels like Kana was given free reign, almost as if Kana was actively participating in the production of Layton anime alongside Level-5 to bring out the fullest extent of her blissfully good voice talents. Kana's defining voice for all of anime belongs to Katrielle in my opinion. Kana Hanazawa is Katrielle Layton.
There is also its unique aspect of making me as a viewer participate in the episodic mysteries. The show is carefully constructed in a way that makes me actively want to solve the mystery as the episode delves into its mystery more. There are a few episodic mysteries that felt jarringly illogical or poorly executed, but 80% of them were generally good. There is a frequent tendency to make me as a viewer cry when it comes to the resolutions, and that can be an issue sometimes. Some mysteries work well with the crying moments when the mystery/narrative are cohesively well-constructed, others are not so much.
As for my thoughts on the main story, it is pretty good. The main story is not so much a main focus, but I did not mind it personally because Katrielle Layton alone entertained me enough to keep watching each episode. The grand mystery felt more like an extra dessert, while the episodic mysteries were the main course. I was pretty surprised that the grand mystery was well-crafted and well-thought out. I think the story-based episodes could have slowed down the pacing so that I could be given time to form my own conclusions on the mysteries. It is not a big issue though.
As for other thoughts on the anime, I definitely wanted to see more of those kinds of episodes where it is focused on side-characters like Emiliana, Ernest, and the Inspector, the fun kind that extracts the wholesome, hilarious moments. The episodes that focused on Emiliana and Sherl singlehandedly made me like the characters on a whole new level. Surprisingly, more of the mysteries focus on the lesser side characters like the farm boy, the seven wealthy people, and the swirly hair genius. I think out of all minor character casts in the Layton series, they felt the most fleshed out. Some of the NPCs in Layton games, while they have charming designs, are pretty forgettable. I felt more closely connected to these "NPCs" (minor characters) and welcomed their reappearance when they returned for another episodic mystery. There is a good sense of world-building in that aspect that made me more invested. It makes me wish that the 3DS game had the complete story with these character explorations.
I am going to miss the anime series. I am dying for more Katrielle. I want the Layton anime to return so that Kana Hanazawa can voice her again. If another season of Layton comes, I hope the staff can improve in crafting episodic mysteries, while also integrating interesting character explorations for characters like Emiliana, Sherl and the Inspector. Katrielle and Ernest are pretty much fleshed out now as of this season, and now there is room to flesh out the other characters. Personally, I am more excited about the prospect of another season of Katrielle episodic mysteries than the idea of a Layton anime based on the six Layton games (A.K.A. what Ace Attorney is currently doing right now with its anime adaptation). Should the six game anime happen though, I hope Hino considers the idea of fleshing out Luke, Flora, Emmy, and Layton more than just doing a simple copy and paste. Give them some substantial character arcs.
As a child I played through all of the Professor Layton games and as you can imagine my overall reaction to finding this series would be the same as any returning Layton fan.
Personally i believe this series does more than justice to the charm and delight of the Layton games.
The art remains the same, keeping the beautiful hand-drawn effect and the soundtrack keeps the same essence as the old but with touches of new aspects, enough to keep the ost from sounding boring and a staright rip from the games.
The plot similar to the Layton games themselves doesnt focus on a in-depth story, in in
my opinion the development of the characters is something much more interesting than the plot itself.
For an anime based solely around the daughter of a detective Layton Mystery Tanteisha doesn't revolve around Murder or gore based cases, more like childish acts enlarged.
Overall Layton Mystery Tanteisha is highly underrated, and returning Layton fans or those looking for a more relaxing series should definetly give this series a shot.
I have a great mystery for miss Layton as well. How come when a full cycle series (50x23min) casted by no one less than Hanazawa Kana, the most favorited #1 person on MAL and the most well known seiyuu in both Japan and in the West, starts airing, only like 200 people end up watching it by episode 10?
Layton Mystery Tanteisha is yet another overlooked kids anime with wonderful atmosphere and more maturity to offer than any popular shonen anime from current season. From its core, the series is an episodic mystery-comedy. The tales center around our detective, Katri, who meets new clients and
takes a peek into their life and problems with her talking dog and an assistant.
The settings for the series are really not much more than an excuse for the episodic slice of life drama where Katri, more than solves a mystery, helps the clients to discover something important related to family, friends and love. Overall, the mysteries and puzzles are life lessons. Heavy subjects, such as the death of a lover, approached with light and calming manner.
There are quite a few differences between Katri and typical detective leads. For one, she is not an autistic mastermind who is uber smart and arrogant. She is practically a kid, and most conclusions she ends up making are comedic, and the reasons behind mysteries nothing less than cute and heart-warming. Katri's overwhelming positivity and outgoing personality make the series rather charming.
The production is kids friendly, but also detailed and uncommon for today's industry. The comedy is often executed with small background animation, the art itself is simplistic yet doesn't feel like it is missing anything specifically. The BGM serves the series. There are lots of chill music presented and the team uses their tracks a lot. Especially the most dramatic conclusions for dramas are filled with uplifting music rather than the nauseating sad piano shite you hear everywhere today. The music choices make it clear that the series is not looking for you to pity the characters, rather to see how they overcome the personal challenges in their life.
As a conclusion, Layton Mystery Tanteisha is a very happy and lights series which is suitable for people of all ages. It's worth of watching for several different reasons, and I have personally been enjoying the life lessons, as well as the characters, drama, comedy and most of all the atmosphere of the show. Most episodic shows suffer from quality differences. Here they are mild. Overall, a great kids anime which I can recommend for viewing.
This show is criminally underlooked and deserves a lot more attention. The Anime itself is a mystery series where the protagonist Katrielle takes on various cases and solves them by the end of the episode. Unlike Detective Conan, it's closest comparison, this anime rarely has to do with murders, settling on civil cases, with the main overarching mystery being the disappearance of Katrielle's father. It has a more wholesome and grounded approach, making it a great watch for younger children or if you just want to relieve some stress.
Even outside of that, the anime is lovingly animated and boasts it's own unique style. Katarielle
is voiced by the legendary voice actress Kana Hanazawa and the writing does it's dammed best to show off her talents at every possible situation. Katarielle's charisma, deductive capabilities and go-getter attitude makes her incredibly likable and can even function as an inspiration for younger audiences.
This is a great show and deserves more people watching it. Please don't miss out.
P.S.: This is based on a video game on the 3DS making it a great video game adaptation, which is frankly rare.