What would happen if you pit the world’s number one thief who has been responsible for heists no right minded individual would believe possible, as well as one of the slickest yet gentlemanly anime characters ever created against the anime world’s greatest detective who has been shrunk back into a kid’s body while retaining his amazing deductive skills that could rival Sherlock Holmes? The answer is: ONE HECK OF AN ORIGINAL VIDEO ANIMATION!!! HELL YEAH!!!
People who are so behind the times may be wondering what the heck I am talking about. People who are even more behind the times than those people, may be clueless as to who those two characters are as well. Well, fret now as I will try to calmly explain what this is all about… though I cannot guarantee that it will make sense to everyone who is trying to read this whether on my blog or on the notes section of FaceBook.
First off, let me first begin by enlightening everyone who those two aforementioned characters on my opening paragraph are.
Dim the spotlights, here we go. *Plays a music background synonymous to the popular American Idol judgment night theme (Yes, I am very animated right now, lol)*.
He is a fictional character introduced by Monkey Punch in Weekly Manga Action on August 10,1967. The world’s number one thief. Often in his adventures, he will take it upon himself and his colleagues to foil other criminals engaged in more violent crimes. On the outside child-like, flighty, perhaps even “goofy” in behavior, his surface facade overcoats a brilliant imagination and thorough knowledge of a hundred varying sciences. Forever extemporizing and reevaluating, he has been responsible for heists no right minded individual would believe possible. While he has been arrested and thrown in jail on a number of occasions, he has always managed to escape. According to his creator, he is the grandson of Maurice Leblanc and Arsene Lupin. That alone should give you guys a hint. On the red corner (red, because of his jacket), we have Arsene Lupin III!!!
He was a well-known High School Detective who helped solved cases which the police could not. A brilliant young detective born to a mystery writer and former movie star. Extremely intelligent, even from a young age, he is also intuitive and observant. Due to the influence of his father, and generally laissez-faire environment at home, he has long been an incessant and persistent reader, especially of mystery novels. Aside from his intelligence, he is also an extremely skilled soccer player, a violinist, and one of the few anime characters ever to be endowed with a perfect pitch. A person with a strong sense of justice as he constantly tries to arrest the Black Organization as well as blaming himself when a murder occurs before him. His sense of justice can, however, sometimes cause him to be skeptical. However, after being attacked and forced to swallow a poison called the APTX 4869, he ends up being turned back into a child. On the blue corner, the great Detective of the East, Shinichi Kudo a.k.a Conan Edogawa!!!!
After that long and arduous introduction of our two main characters, allow me to explain what the heck this is all about. Well, you may have heard it (but I’m guessing a lot more have not) but, I am talking about one of the hardest to find an original DVD copy of (yes, I am not talking about pirating or downloading this as this is one of the great gems of the anime world), the OVA known as: LUPIN III VS DETECTIVE CONAN!!!!
This is not a hoax and neither is this a fanfiction or a poor attempt to make quick money from fans of the two most loved series. Quite honestly, it was the opposite. I have never found an OVA so hard to search an original DVD of than this which is why I count myself lucky to have finally found it after quite a long time of searching.
Now, I’m sure quite a number of curious people out there who are familiar with the two titles and characters are wondering what this Original Video Animation is all about. That is what the next part of this post is about.
The Kingdom of Vespania had been living in peace and harmony with nature for quite a number of years after Queen Sakura was crowned so many years ago. One fateful afternoon however, placed the Kingdom in quite a crossroad when the Queen and her son and heir to the throne of Vespania, Prince Jhil, were found dead underneath a Cherry Blossom tree during what was supposed to be an afternoon of hunting. In initial reports, it was said that Prince Jhil, who was trying to hunt a fox that had scurried its way over to the said tree, accidentally fired a shot and, instead of hitting the poor fox, ended up hitting his mother instead. In a fit of disbelief and grief, the Prince was said to killed himself with a pistol soon after finding his dead mother’s body.
Now, the Kingdom of Vespania had one royal family member left, the Princess Myra who is now set to be the new ruler of Vespania. The problem is, it would appear a lot of her countrymen and even those in the courts are not too fond of her. After all, it was not supposed to be her who is to become the new ruler of the kingdom.
As Vespania wanted to have good dealings with the country of Japan, the Princess-and-soon-to-be-Queen Myra, had to go to Sakurasaku Hotel in Japan to attend a party filled with famous celebrities, and among these are Detective Kagorou Mouri and, of course, Conan was with him too as well as Sonoko (she is, after all, one of the wealthiest people in that particular anime world, lol). When the princess, after a lot of convincing from those around her, finally gave an audience to the anticipating crowd, Kagoro, Conan and Sonoko were suprised to see that Princess Myra looked EXACTLY like a person that was very close to them but currently is absent — Ran!
The party suddenly takes a surprising turn when Conan foils a plot to poison the princess. The story even takes a more interesting tone when the princess, after being taken out of the party and into her room, escapes and comes running (wearing her gown and all) and bumping into Ran who mistakes her bodyguard for a “bad” person and ends up giving him a lesson — Ran Style. After several events, Ran ends up being mistaken as the princess and the real princess ends up going with a woman who was later revealed to be Fujiko from Lupin III!
With the princess somewhere in the city, despite having proven that she was Ran and not Myra, Ran was talked into acting as the princess and ends up being taken to Vespania with Conan in tow. Confusing? Well, you don’t expect me to spoil the whole thing, do you?
Anyways, you may be wondering: Now where the heck is Lupin?? What does he have to do with the whole story?? Well, we’re getting there. It’s actually pretty hard to give you guys a heads up on this film when it has so many things going on.
Anyways, Lupin happens to be planning on stealing the Vespania Crown and its jewels which is being guarded by a very high-end security vault that even the great Lupin III had apparently failed to find a fool-proof way in or out. The problem with the said vault is that it is guarded with various sensors that even after managing to bypass one would trigger the other and the other and the other. Now, Lupin’s brilliant mind devices a way for them to sneak in undetected. It was by using a stone that was capable of hiding their presence much like the ability of those stealth fighter planes. This stone is called the Vespania Stone — don’t ask me why they didn’t even bother to be more creative with the stone’s name.
Anyways, everyone from Lupin III and Conan as well as Kagoro ends up in Vespania after a lot of events simultaneously happening while Ran was being whisked away on a royal airplane after having been drugged. But, before Kagoro could meet up with Ran and Conan, Ran agrees to help Keith, one of the SPs of Vespania, to capture the perpetrator who has been trying to kill the princess. Keith also asks Conan’s assistance as he could easily see Conan’s deductive skills after having saved the princess before and after what he had done just to get to Ran. Conan agrees and ends up being paired with Jigen to head to the scene of the crime where the Queen and the Prince had died to find evidence against their suspect — the Duke, which also happens to be Myra’s Uncle.
Now, before going to Vespania, Kagoro was tasked to help Inspector Zenigata and pose as Zenigata’s assistant in order to get to Vespania. Now, why does Inspector Zenigata need to head there as well? Well, of course, because he needs to foil Lupin’s plan of attaining the Queen’s Crown.
After some thorough investigating, Conan finally had enough evidence and understanding as to why the culprit did what he did. Consequently, Lupin was once again beaten to the punch by Fujiko who had taken the Queen’s Crown before he could make his move. Anyways, fast forwarding, everyone ends up in the courtyard as ordered by the Duke.
In Detective Conan style, Conan figures this was the best time to unmask the villain. And, as he was aiming at Kagoro, Kagoro moved and he ended up hitting Zenigata with his tranquilizer watch. As usual, having no choice on the matter, Conan was about to give his speech via Zenigata when Zenigata surprisingly wakes up. What was even more of a surprise was when this Kagoro was revealed to be Lupin under disguise and he worked with Conan into pointing out who was the culprit with Conan using his bowtie to change his voice and giving his deductions and Lupin (who was acting as Kagoro) played his part by…well… being Kagoro.
Anyways, in the end Lupin helps Conan catch the culprit while evading being caught by Zenigata and using the 30-second-stealth device he had made to save everyone’s lives from being blown to pieces.
In the end, Myra accepts being the Queen and condemns a very wounded Duke and his men for their crimes, Lupin manages to get away and divulges why he knew the late Queen Sakura to Myra before leaving, Zenigata ended up being empty handed not being able to capture Lupin.
Conan also learns Lupin’s name, after not having known of his name prior to the final scene where he does learn his name and tells him that: “I will definitely catch you the next time you try to steal something.”.
Just as they were about to leave, Kagoro wonders where Conan was considering how he had wanted to see the coronation. Keith then tells him and Ran that Conan was abducted by the embassy for being in the country illegally, thanks to the stunt he pulled with the airplane. As Zenigata turns around, a note was attached to his back saying that “We have the boy”, the note being from Lupin and his gang.
Somewhere in Vespania, being driven to the embassy, Conan was pretty worried until it was revealed to him that he is under the company of Lupin and the others. Lupin apparently knows who Conan really is and promises to keep that secret while wondering how he could have shrunk. They also tell him that they plan on helping him back to Japan thanks to Fujiko’s friend who happens to have a ‘boat’ (which happens to be a submarine!!).
In the end, Conan ends up leaving Vespania via the submarine with Fujiko who was curious of how he had shrunk his body and “the secrets of regeneration” as she had thought it was.
Now, you may be wondering: If that was the gist of the story, then why the heck is it titled as ‘Lupin III VS Detective Conan?! What was the ‘VS’ or versus part all about?!
Well, they did not exactly go on a chasing spree with Conan chasing after Lupin, no. The versus was probably because of the battle of wits as they both tried to figure out (in their own way) who killed the Queen, the Prince and who was trying to kill the Princess as well. The story is better than how I raved on about it here since I am still so psyched after watching it.
Anyways, the downside of the collaboration is the distinct difference in character design as could be seen in the screenshots I have provided. Having two different sets of animators for the characters really showed the difference in the series. Other than that, I have no qualms regarding this OVA. It was, in each and every possible way, what an OVA should be — ORIGINAL.
Another interesting thing they did in this OVA was with the theme song. They managed to mix the two famous music from Lupin III (Lupin III’s title music) and Conan (Detective Conan’s pre-opening and next-episode music) into one original song. A very catchy song quite honestly. I wonder if I can rip the song from the movie… hmm… maybe I’ll try to find an original soundtrack for it too when I have the time.
The question is, after Conan’s statement, whether Lupin and Conan would meet again. Hm… now that I think of crossovers between the two, I wonder who is the better theif, Kaito Kid or Lupin? Who do you guys think?