A good number of fall anime series are wrapping up this week or next. So if you’re the type who prefers to wait and marathon a show, you’re about to have your pick of a lot of fun titles. Among them is Undead Murder Farce, a historical paranormal mystery series that’s head and shoulders above much of the season. Or, well, at least a head.
This blend of action, mythology, and detective story is one of the season’s most solid new titles. There are lots of reasons to watch, but we’ll give you a small handful:
Undead Murder Farce is grounded in myths and legends from all over the world. From oni and immortals to vampires and werewolves, all sorts of inhuman beings inhabit this alternate history. They also, most important, inhabit our lead trio. Head-in-a-cage Aya Rindo is only still alive because she’s a legendary immortal being. Accompanying her is Tsugaru Shinuchi, a circus performer who was made into a half-oni through illicit experiments.
As Tsugaru accompanies Aya on the search for her missing body, they’ll encounter other legendary beings the world over. And they’ll see more weird science done with these beings. But humanoid monsters aren’t the only legends inhabiting this anime.
Undead Murder Farce takes place in the late 1800s: a time packed with literary (and dubiously historical) heroes and villains. These characters are legendary in their own right, but they’re also something far more important: they’re in the public domain. (Some also dubiously so.) Which means that viewers can look forward to Aya matching wits with Sherlock Holmes, Arsène Lupin, Dr. Frankenstein, and many others.
All these characters, and more, cross paths during the series’s central story in London. If you’re a lover of classic literature, the promise of Holmes vs. Lupin in Phileas Fogg’s personal museum should be exciting enough. Throw in the Phantom of the Opera, Dr. Frankenstein, and Carmilla the vampire queen, and you know it’s going to be a wild night.
At the end of the day, the biggest allure of Undead Murder Farce is the story—on both a macro and micro level. Operating as the Cage User, Aya and her cohorts solve mysteries for and involving the inhuman. And they’re compelling mysteries. How was a vampire staked soundlessly in her own home when everyone has an alibi? How will Lupin steal a valuable gem from a sealed underground vault? Who is murdering both werewolf and human girls on rainy nights in Germany? If you’re a fan of detective fiction, these stories will scratch that itch.
The Undead Murder Farce novels are still ongoing, but there’s no word on where the anime will go from here. (Keep an eye on Otaku USA for the latest news on that front!) In the meantime, it’s the perfect time to immerse yourself in the show’s weird and wonderful mysteries.