Hello and welcome back to Otaku Thursday! We’re officially into 2021 and yet here I am, ready to be like: yo let’s talk about something from 2020 anime. Why? Well, because I never watched it back when it aired. That show? The Case Files of Jeweler Richard. I had tried watching it back in the season it aired…but I kind of got distracted by other anime. So now, in that odd in-between time of fall anime ending and winter anime only just beginning, I thought I’d revisit and review Richard-san. So without further ado (and as I mentally prep myself for the YCK anime awards), let’s talk about jewels.
So I’m going to start off this post as reasonably as I can because it’ll likely derail into but a rant. So, the anime, to start off–isn’t super interesting. Yes. I said it. The first episode, while intriguing, doesn’t truly reel you in. The story of Seigi’s grandmother being a petty thief and having stolen the ring he inquires Richard about is interesting–for the most part. It very much set the pace that this show is a show about gems–gems and drama. I will say that while it set pretty clear expectations–The Jeweler Richard still managed to disappoint me later down the line. That may be in due part to the fact that while I enjoyed the characters, I also felt they were written a little bland–a little typical. I watched this show alongside Star, and we kept joking that Richard and Seigi acted like knock-off versions of Ash & Eiji from Banana Fish. They really were like–not bad characters–just not characters that we like loved or anything. Honestly, I can say that about almost every character that appeared. Were they good while they were on screen? Yeah for the most part. Did I stop caring about them when they stopped appearing on screen? Literally everyone except for Homura. And I only thought of Homura because he kept fucking appearing. Star says she enjoyed Seigi’s friend who was essentially asking Seigi the same questions the viewer was. Unfortunately she wasn’t super prominent in the anime, and for that reason we can’t really remember her name. But she was like the window for the viewer at times. I do think I started really getting invested in Richard and Seigi as people near the end of the anime when they brought in the true family drama. Unfortunately…it was the end of the anime.
As for actual animation? It was nice. Honestly, the best part was the way they really made the jewels shine. Like honestly, the animation budget clearly went into making those jewels look fan-friggin-tastic. The characters were very bishounen and nice–goddamn Richard’s eyes were beautiful. The color palette was surprisingly soft and yet the gems were always extremely vibrant. But it wasn’t like–animation of the year award good. It was just generally nice to look at. And the music? I enjoyed the piano pieces, and I LOVED the opening and ending songs. Honestly, both of them were bopping. Especially the opening where the piano work was absolutely stunning. To imagine the skill required (or computer program required) for it–amazing.
Okay rant time now. But like…what the actual frick?! I feel so unsatisfied at the storyline between Richard and Seigi. And let me explain why–the entire time…the anime was giving me a very boys love esque vibe.I wasn’t necessarily constantly rooting for it to be a fully realized BL/yaoi…but I wanted more. I felt like there was a lot of vague notions in the anime that was kind of just…disappointing? There was certainly romantic subtext between them (hell we have a BL trope bingo sheet and it filled out like 5 bingo’s), but I always felt like it was shying away from establishing anything. WHICH is fair. Maybe it was supposed to be that way, or maybe it was just supposed to be more about the fact that they were really good friends or that a label for their relationship didn’t matter…but it also felt bait-like. Like intentionally casting out there to attract a certain fanbase without promise of fulfillment. Like if Yuri on Ice never including the kiss. I think this could’ve been a very interesting route to explore–what exactly was their relationship? I think it was pretty clear how Seigi felt about Richard–how he viewed him. But I always felt like Richard’s inner psyche was very closed off to the rest of the world, aka us–the viewers. Again. Intentional? Yes probably. But also pretty disappointing. I also wish we’d gotten to the family drama storylines a little earlier in the anime–I enjoyed the episodic nature of the show, but the drama was really where I found myself extremely invested.
Overall…did I enjoy the The Case Files of Jeweler Richard? Actually, yeah. I enjoyed it a lot. BUT I wish it had been SO much more than what it was. It could’ve been so much better. So overall, it was a decent, enjoyable, but ultimately lost opportunity, of a ride. On the plus side…I learned SO much about gems. Would I recommend it? Yeah actually–despite all, I would 100% recommend it. It’s certainly ride. If I gave it a letter rating it would be a solid B–for bait–or Boys Love. Haven’t decided which yet.