[Interview] Animate Times – Hypnosis Mic Anime Cast Interview Series Vol.8

Original URL: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1600333553
Published: 2020/9/22

Saito Soma (Yumeno Gentaro in Hypnosis Mic -Division Rap Battle- Rhyme Anima)

Their unbalance is a delicate balance

Q: Their story is finally beginning in animated form. What were your impressions after seeing the anime footage?

First of all, I was happy to see the characters moving around, since they’ve been audio-based until now.

I was also curious about how the rap battle scenes would be depicted, and they were really cool. I could feel all of the creators’ love for the series.

There were serious scenes with a sprinkling of comedy, so it was really fun to record.

Q: What did you rediscover about your character’s charms after seeing the anime?

I thought, “Gentaro really does have extremely aesthetic and seductive features.”

In the anime, his eccentricities are somewhat milder compared to the original drama CDs, so he felt more like Posse’s balancer. He also showed quite a few different expressions when reacting to things, which was unexpected and refreshing.

Also, what happens in the latter half…! I can’t say anything specific, but please watch it with your own eyes!

Q: What are Shibuya Division’s fortes, and what do you think your character’s role is?

Compared to the other divisions, Shibuya has more freedom and it seems like there’s something going on behind the scenes. Of course, all of the divisions and characters have mysterious elements that haven’t been revealed, but Shibuya’s bright and cheerful exterior is hiding each member’s own secrets.

However, their bonds have deepened quite a lot from the individualistic atmosphere they had when the team formed. Anyway, Shibuya feels like they do a lot of unique things.

Gentaro pretends to be the comedian of the group, but he actually guides their conversations well. I think their unbalance is a delicate balance.

Q: Various different characters appeared, such as the Chuo-ku members. Which characters or divisions are you interested in story-wise?

It feels like I can’t say anything without spoiling it, but one of Rio’s scenes was very striking to me. Some of the characters are always expressive, but even the cool and collected characters have cute momentary reactions, so please keep an eye out for those little details.

Q: How was the recording atmosphere? Do you have any interesting stories relating to the recording or conversations with the other cast members?

It became individual recordings partway through, but since we’re often together at concerts and other programs, the recording atmosphere was extremely friendly. The recordings themselves also went quite smoothly every time. It was fun to record the crowd noises together too.

Q: When you think of Hypmic, you think of the awesome raps. What were your impressions when you heard the OP and sung it?

Hypmic’s songs always feel like they’re opening new doors, and it was the same this time. The previous songs also had parts that could be called traditional choruses, but this OP felt like it had a stronger emphasis on melody than the past songs.

Also, I assume it was extremely difficult to fit everyone’s parts in because of length restrictions, but the result was an impressively fast-paced, cool song. There’ll also be lots of new songs in the anime, so please look forward to them!

Q: Please give us a message for the fans looking forward to the anime.

Hypmic’s anime is finally beginning! Whether you’ve been supporting us before or you’re just starting now, I think anyone will be able to enjoy it, so please give it a watch!

The Shibuya crew is having their usual carefree fun! Please look forward to their battles and dialogues! Thank you!

Q: Lastly, a message of support from yourself to the Fling Posse members!

Freedom, pop, ephemerality. I adore how you are.

Ramuda-chan, the two of us are with you.
Gentaro-san, I want to see you let loose more.
Dice-kun, it’s great how straightforward you are, but gamble in moderation, okay? *laughs*

May your days continue to be blessed with happiness! Posse’s the best!

[Interview] Animate Times – Omikuji Yon Kyoudai Cast Interview

Published: 2020/5/22
Original URL: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1587624437

Hatano Wataru (Shuu in Omikuji Yon Kyoudai)
Saito Soma (Ayame in Omikuji Yon Kyoudai)
Nishiyama Koutaro (Aoba in Omikuji Yon Kyoudai)
Takeuchi Shunsuke (Shiki in Omikuji Yon Kyoudai)
Komada Wataru (Ogata Kouichi in Omikuji Yon Kyoudai: Fuyu no Tantei wa Roast Beef ga Osuki)

Genda Tessyo

※This interview was to commemorate the series’ first-ever BD/DVD release, their Fuyu no Tantei wa Roast Beef ga Osuki event.

Omikuji Yon Kyoudai gained new potential with their first-ever guest member☆

Q: First, please tell us your impressions of the Omikuji Yon Kyoudai: Fuyu no Tantei wa Roast Beef ga Osuki reading theatre that was held last winter.

Hatano: Rather than a normal reading theatre, this one felt like a new form of entertainment. It was on a large-scale stage, so we had to run around a lot.

Kawajiri Keita-san’s script had me laughing just from reading it, and it took each of the actors’ characteristics into play. It was a reading theatre where I really had no idea what would come forth.

Omikuji Yon Kyoudai was originally only the four of us, but by inviting Komada-kun as our first guest, I feel like the series has taken a new step forward.

Takeuchi: This was the second reading theatre we did, the first being Haru wa Omusubi!. I wondered how it’d turn out, but we had Wataru-san as a guest and the script took on a different flavour, so it felt like a new wave of dialogues was born. It showed that Omikuji Yon Kyoudai had room for such new developments.

I wanted to act both the comedic and the heartwarming parts with everything I had, to figure out how to make it the most entertaining, for the sake of the next installment as well.

Saito: I really got tired from laughing so much *laughs*. As they said, I really felt like I’ve grown through these good brothers, good series, and good characters.

Our guest, Koma-chan was a key character in this reading theatre, and if you were to ask me to name an alternative actor for him, no one else comes to mind at all.

We created this stage with this amazing cast, and it was a wonderful event that gave me high hopes for the future of the four brothers… but, it was seriously exhausting. *laughs*

Ayame’s parts were long. I’d keep flipping and flipping the pages, but it’d still be on Ayame.

Komada: Don’t be like that. If we removed any more lines, it wouldn’t be interesting anymore.

Saito: I want to take this opportunity to state that I had the fewest ad libs. *laughs*

Hatano: Who had the most?

Saito: *immediately answers* It was you, Hatano-san.

All: *laughs*

Saito: You were doing that rigid dancing while the lights dimmed, and the evening session had a lot of ad libs, right?

Nishiyama: His movements were visually way more active than everyone else’s. *laughs*

Hatano: Before it began, Kawajiri-san said “The stage transition there is a bit long, so feel free to play around.” So I really did it, only to see that no one else was moving!

All: *laughs*

Hatano: It was so embarrassing!

Saito: It was so funny *laughs*

Q: What were your impressions, Nishiyama-san?

Nishiyama: Both sessions were held on the same day, but it felt like the day and evening sessions were quite different in tone. This was because after the day session, during the break we discussed changes we wanted to make based on the audience’s reactions. I think it was a day of utmost concentration for all of us.

Komada: Like Koutaro-kun said, the audience reactions between the day and evening sessions would make you think they were different shows. All of the cast members made things more entertaining, and it was a lot of fun.

I was participating as the series’ first guest, so I was really excited about that already. During rehearsal, I absorbed as much as I could of the four characters they’d been developing all this time, and went into the performance wanting to simply enjoy the atmosphere.

The gap formed from the powered-up characters is hilarious!

Q: In the after-talk, you talked about how this event was the culmination of what came before it. Regarding what you have in common with the characters you play, has anything changed since your first impression of them?

Saito: I don’t think I have anything (in common). *laughs*

Nishiyama: My first impression of Aoba was that he was the most cheerful and energetic of the four brothers. I also thought he’d be shy around people outside their family, but it turned out that he was unreserved towards Ogata-san in this reading theatre. I realized that he can treat everyone in the same cheerful way.

Komada: Just like you, right? You’re a milder version. *laughs*

Takeuchi: We make new discoveries each time we act as them, so I think every character has gaps like that.

Saito: I think they got deeper with this performance, like their facial expressions that are contrary to their lines. Like how Shuu-nii never fails to find the camera when he poses. The camerawork was excellent too.

Hatano: Shuu had a lot of lines that were directed towards the audience, so I guess it seemed that way. *laughs*

Takeuchi: From this video footage, I think you’ll understand what it means when we say “reading theatre isn’t only about reading.” 81 Produce should use this as teaching material in their training school!

All: *laughs*

Saito: Shiki also sang a lot more than usual.

Takeuchi: He was supposed to just be a karaoke enthusiast at first…

Hatano: It was like the technique of a wandering minstrel. Takeuchi-kun can sing about any theme.

Q: He had singing scenes with a variety of titles, right? I wondered if Shiki’s songs had lyrics and composition behind them.

Takeuchi: This is embarrassing to talk about. *laughs*

Saito: You should say it!

Takeuchi: It’s… Shiki’s mental state *nervous*. I’d prefer to leave it to people’s imagination, so I’m still not going to comment.

Saito: The fortunes are a matter of chance, after all. We don’t know what we’ll get until we pull them. On the other hand, that helped us grow.

Takeuchi: Indeed *laughs*. All of the characters have been powering up.

Saito: *immediately* Ayame was the same as always, though.

Hatano: He’s definitely powering up!

Saito: It felt like the script gave him the “entertainer” position. I didn’t expect there to be a red light overlaid on my face on the live camera… It shocked me again when I saw it in the footage *laughs*. Everyone broke character when it happened.

Hatano: That was something only you could do. *laughs*

Q: In the after-talk, Hatano-san said something along the lines of, “Did Shuu always like girls this much?”

Hatano: In the very first recording, I emphasized the character’s personality strongly, but was directed to keep him as an elegant young man, so that he wouldn’t come across as a philanderer. I’ve been maintaining that since then, but this time, the script made it seem like his pent-up thoughts exploded. So, I boldly went all-in.

But no matter what we saw of him here, that was only one side of his character. He has various sides to him, like how he cares for his brothers. It’s just that this performance made it clear that he loves girls more than he loves food. *laughs*

Saito: There was the part about green peppers too.

Hatano: “Girl pepper” was Aoba’s line.

Nishiyama: It was completely as written in the script.

Q: I see! I thought it was an ad lib. I’d like to compare with the script to see how much of it was ad-libbed.

Hatano: The part where I suddenly got excited about urban legends was completely my own ad lib. *laughs*

Komada: We naturally poked fun at it during the commentary, but Hatano-san was intent on expressing his love for urban legends. He went a long time without looking at the script.

Nishiyama: It was entertaining because it was purely ad-libbed.

Q: For the series’ first guest, Komada-san, what was your first impression of your character, and do you have anything in common with him?

Komada: My role was split into Kouichi and Kouji, who are complete opposites. Kouichi is calm and open-hearted, the type you’d expect to live in the western-style house that the story took place in. Meanwhile, Kouji is oppressive. Even though it was a dual role, it wasn’t particularly difficult to work with emotion-wise. Although, speaking in a mild tone followed by a sudden loud outburst was such a contrast that I’d have to hold back my laughter each time. I think it would’ve made the audience chuckle too, but personally… my attitude wasn’t as rough as Kouji nor as mild as Kouichi, so I was like a third person that was an average of the two.

All: *laughs*

Nishiyama: A third person that grew up watching Kouichi and Kouji, right?

Komada: Having both power and gentleness… That makes it sound like a good thing. Well, let’s leave it at that. *laughs*

Since it’s a video, the silent scenes are noteworthy too!

Q: You talked about the good camerawork as well. Unlike recordings for anime and whatnot where you stand in front of the mic, this reading theatre was like a stage play with visuals and props. What were your personal highlights, or things that can only be enjoyed because of the visuals?

Nishiyama: Everyone was aware that they could be seen at any moment, so I think it’d be interesting to observe our facial expressions. It was really neat how the footage switched between all of the different cameras showing us.

Komada: Since it’s a reading theatre, we naturally acted out the core lines faithfully, and mixed in some small, fun deviations in the non-important parts. Since there was a live camera, it was a unique reading theatre with many scenes that would make the viewers laugh unexpectedly. I think being able to enjoy that is the best thing about this BD/DVD release.

Saito: We were acting without being able to see what kind of footage was being shown to the audience, so when I watched the footage for this disc release, it made me want to draw attention to the silent parts, too. Since this reading theatre had movement involved, we were able to create “entertainment between the lines,” so the parts without dialogue actually seemed funnier. Komada-san in particular made great facial expressions this time… They really were wonderful. *laughs*

Takeuchi: Komada-san’s face was always there during the close-ups.

Hatano: Koutaro’s close-ups were also nice… and funny. *laughs*

Nishiyama: It didn’t feel like there were that many during the first half (which I commentated)…

Komada: No, there was definitely at least one *laughs*. It wasn’t just the two of us, though.

Nishiyama: Yeah, everyone was great! Koma-chan was good at finding the camera. He looked straight at it, as if he knew it was going to be released on disc. A lot of the things I didn’t know at the time because of the wide stage became clear thanks to this release.

Hatano: Everyone was competing with ad libs, so even the parts I did know greatly exceeded my expectations. The cameramen captured great moments, like when we weren’t speaking and turned to the side to hold back our laughter. Even though it’s in video form, it feels like you’re watching it live.

Hatano-san, the senpai who breaks through the sense of security with ad libs, and Takeuchi-san, totally the cute, spoiled youngest sibling♪

Q: By the way, was there anything you noticed about each other due to being senpais and kouhais at the same agency?

Saito: We were all friends to begin with, but when we’re on stage, it’s not about senpais/kouhais or being from the same agency—we’re all equal as “actors.” I always genuinely think, “Wow, they’re really good.”

For example, Hatano-san has an unwavering sense of stability, and even when the rest of us go off-track with ad libs, he’ll always bring us back to the main story. Or so we thought, but then he took the initiative to force ad libs in, making the rest of us go “Oh, fine!” “We’ll do it too, then.”

Takeuchi: It was like we were given the green light. *laughs*

Komada: Among all the chatter, in the end Hatano-san was enjoying himself the most. He also added things without telling us, making us laugh too. *laughs*

Nishiyama: He came out of nowhere. Despite that, Hatano-san’s presence kept the scene together. If he weren’t there, we’d get even more off-track, so I think he showed us the “logic” of acting.

Saito: On the other hand, Shun-chan laughed too much *laughs*. If you look closely, he’s hiding his laughter behind his hair.

Takeuchi: I really want people to watch the footage *laughs*. I couldn’t hold back my laughter, so I was trying to minimize risk and ended up looking down at my script the whole time.

Saito: That makes you like the youngest sibling; it’s cute.

Hatano: Right, when we see Takeuchi-kun during recordings, he seems like this cool, mighty character with a deep voice, but in this series he has the innocence of the youngest child. Seeing him suddenly smile brightly makes my chest tighten.

Nishiyama: In a way, it’s like his age is showing, and it feels like everyone’s doting on him.

Komada: Rather than the cool aura he gives off during work—please write “in a super low voice” here and make it bold—it constantly felt like he was approaching me like “(in a super low voice) Komada-saaan!” and I thought something like that was only possible because of this particular work.

All of us are from the same agency, we see each other regularly at various jobs, and we’ve known each other for a long time too, so we can relax around each other.

We also spent time making suggestions (including ad libs), and on the day of the show, rather than “It’s time for the real show!”, it felt more like “We finally get to do this.” I think Takeuchi showed that kind of cuteness.

What did the cast think was great about Saito-san, Komada-san, and Nishiyama-san?

Takeuchi: But when it comes to cuteness, it has to be Ayame…

Saito: …*peers at Takeuchi-san* Do you really think so? Look into my eyes and say that without hiding behind your bangs. *laughs*

Takeuchi: *laughs* Ayame really was amazing this time! Even during the picture drama recordings, Ayame’s always opening new doors. In response to that, Soma-san always “opens the doors for real,” not halfway.

Saito: Ayame was originally more normal, and had the impression of the second son that balances everyone out. Why did he end up like this? *laughs*

All: *laughs*

Takeuchi: But since you open the door all the way, it became convincing. The script was amazing too.

Saito: Yeah, I was generally acting according to the script.

Komada: Soma and I debuted around the same time and I know him well, so when I see the way he interposes lines during funny scenes and presents himself to the camera, I think “Well done.” *laughs*

Nishiyama: Soma made me laugh just from the picture. I think he also has the power to move us back on track when the conversation gets derailed.

Hatano: Honestly, starting from the rehearsal I thought each and every one of them was amazing. When I got the script, I initially imagined the stage and how it’d go, but when we actually did it, it greatly exceeded my expectations. And our guest, Komada-kun was excellent too.

Takeuchi: He has a sharp mind and a sense of humour.

Saito: During the evening session, Kouji evaluated the brothers’ costumes and adjusted them one-by-one, and that was all Koma-chan’s ad-libbing. The four of us did our own ad lib comments, and it was amazing how nothing missed its mark. It would’ve been impossible without considerable determination beforehand. I thought, “This guy’s amazing!”

Komada: I suggested it after the day session. Since the four of them were posing, I figured the audience would want to see more of it, and I did too. Plus, it’s hard to put on the costume on stage without a mirror, so I thought I could straighten out their costumes while everyone else was enjoying their poses. Even though I suggested it, I didn’t actually think about what I was going to say, so I gave my honest impressions on the spot. *laughs*

Nishiyama: You did it so well; it was hilarious. *laughs*

Komada: That was my highlight of the day. The “Well done, Komada!” scene.

Hatano: It was incredible! Koutaro was crazy, too. I wondered what was going on with his mental state.

Takeuchi: My personal highlight was Nishiyama-san’s bow during the curtain call. Normally you have your hands at your sides when you bow, but Nishiyama-san alone had them in front, like he was reaching down.

All: *laughs*

Hatano: It turned into a diving posture. *laughs*

Takeuchi: It looks like the start of a match, so we’ll need the judges to take a look at it.

Hatano: With instant replay.

Saito: In slow-motion.

Komada: I think he did it on purpose. *laughs*

Nishiyama: I wasn’t! It’d be insane to do that on purpose by myself. *laughs*

Takeuchi: Nishiyama Koutaro-san really is different. He’s a genius. I don’t think I’m the only one who thought that, so please chime in. *laughs*

Komada: His bow was just one example of how it feels like he claims things for himself.

Saito: I think it happened because he wanted to make people smile. The video footage tells it all, so please pay attention to Nishiyama-san.

Nishiyama: *laughs* I don’t mind at all if you watch me!

The setting for the next show…?

Q: This is something you’ll have to check in the footage. So, the next reading theatre is planned for autumn. Are there any situations you’d like to try, or things you want to challenge?

Hatano: Autumn has a lot of possibilities, huh?

Takeuchi: It’s said that autumn is the best season for reading, too. When you think of autumn, you think of the arts, and when you think of the arts, you think of singing…

Saito: Can we make mascots again like we did for the first show? Then again, a monster was created back then.

Nishiyama: What about the food? We’ve had onigiri and roast beef, so for a taste of autumn, how about fruit?

Komada: That’s good, and baked sweet potatoes. We’ll have a veteran from 81 Produce sing the baked sweet potato song, like Genda (Tessyo)-san, and it’ll be like “You can’t pass by the food cart without stopping!”

Q: That sounds like it’d become an amazing reading theatre. *laughs*

Nishiyama: The original concept we heard for this series was that it was seeking to be bright and fun. Omikuji Yon Kyoudai is something that’s comforting no matter when you watch it, so I want to continue having fun with it.

Hatano: Indeed.

Takeuchi: Oh, how about another set of four brothers?

Saito: Themed after cards, like diamond, spade, et cetera?

Hatano: They come from America, and the oldest son is Genda Tessyo-san.

Saito: That sounds interesting. “YOU guys call yourself the fortune BROTHERS, but you don’t pull fortunes very often, huh? HAHA”

All: *laughs*

Back to the original intent, and look forward to Omikuji Yon Kyoudai’s future developments!

Q: I’m excited to see how much of this gets implemented *laughs*. Lastly, please give a message for the fans looking forward to the BD/DVD.

Komada: Since it’s the first disc release, the selling point is that if you wanted to see it again or couldn’t come on that day: “Don’t worry. Everything is shown.” *laughs*

The making-of also shows a little bit of our planning before the show, so you can get a candid view of how it was put together.

Omikuji Yon Kyoudai is bound to keep doing new things, so I really hope I’ll have the opportunity to participate again.

Please enjoy the BD/DVD from various perspectives!

Nishiyama: This is the first time our reading theatre is being released on BD/DVD, so those who came to the event will be able to see it more thoroughly, and those who couldn’t make it can expand on their enjoyment of the picture dramas.

This time, we had Koma-chan as a powerful helper, and I think we were able to put on a bright, fun show. I hope we can act with Koma-chan again, so please watch the BD/DVD a lot and show your support.

Takeuchi: Please enjoy the audio commentary on the BD/DVD too.

Also, Omikuji Yon Kyoudai began with the voiced fortunes on the website, so I’ll be happy if this reading theatre encourages everyone to pull their daily fortunes again.

“Don’t forget your initial intent.” I want to continue trying to create those opportunities.

Saito: Indeed. I’d forgotten because this time we were making roast beef and having a Christmas party. *laughs*

This series has gone on for about four years, and it’s uncommon to have the chance to voice a single series or character for so long. I hope we can continue doing this forever at a relaxed pace.

This time we had Komada-kun too, and despite all that was said, the four of us were able to let loose (in an extremely good way) and have fun while putting all our effort into the show.

Thankfully, the next show is already confirmed, although there are still things we don’t know, like what it’ll be about and what Omikuji Yon Kyoudai’s next developments will be.

It’s probably going to be an autumn full of laughs, huh…?

All: *laughs*

Hatano: It might be ultra serious for all we know. *laughs*

Saito: That’s possible. You don’t know what fortune you’ll get until you draw it, so I hope we get a “very lucky” story.

Please continue to support Omikuji Yon Kyoudai!

Hatano: Omikuji Yon Kyoudai began as voice content that was enjoyed through the website. When we had our first reading theatre, Omikuji Yon Kyoudai: Haru wa Omusubi!, I thought “This might be the first and last time,” but thanks to each and every one of the audience’s support, we were able to perform again, which I’m thankful for.

This series teaches me how it’s important to do your very best every time. There’s entertainment that can only be created during those instants, and I hope we can continue to work together creating that.

Please look forward to the BD/DVD and the next reading theatre!

※This interview was conducted before the COVID-19 state of emergency was declared.

[Interview] Animate Times – Kabukichou Sherlock Interview No.08 – Konishi Katsuyuki x Saito Soma

Original URL: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1580462306
Published: 2020/1/31

Konishi Katsuyuki (Sherlock Holmes in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Saito Soma (Kyougoku Fuyuto in Kabukichou Sherlock)

Nakamura Yuichi (John H. Watson in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Yamashita Seiichiro (James Moriarty in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Tachibana Tatsumaru (Kobayashi Toratarou in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Murase Ayumu (Hokari Maki in Kabukichou Sherlock)

The gags mixed in with the human-nature stories… is because Director Yoshimura and Kishimoto-san are shy

Q: Now that we’ve broken into the second cour with Episode 13, what were the memorable scenes for you there?

Konishi: The scene with all the poop.

All: *laughs*

Saito: Episode 14, the Kyougoku episode, right? For the record, it’s because of that that Kyougoku was able to recover, and the episode’s punchline was poop too. *laughs*

Konishi: I was like “You’re kidding me…” when he walked onto it.

Saito: It’s because they didn’t check to make sure there was none left in the bag.

Kyougoku’s episode was memorable to me too, and actually, after Episode 11, I asked “What happens to Kyougoku after this?” and was told that the shock was so great that he can’t go outside and loses sight of himself for a while, but he does get an episode where his wounds are healed. Then I received Episode 14, and just when I thought it was a story about overcoming the past and getting back on his feet, the final, final punchline was that. It was fitting for the series in a way. *laughs*

Konishi-san said before that Kyougoku is a lovable idiot, and I said in a previous interview that I think he’s a pure fellow. I feel that Episode 14 is the strongest presentation of that. He’s a romanticist, idealist, and has dreams the way any 23-year old would. His childish side is shown a lot and he’s often the subject of exaggerated jokes, but I think this episode lets you come to like him as a normal human being.

The animation style changed for that last sword fight-like scene.

Konishi: It felt like a different anime? *laughs*

Saito: It did, and I had to talk in that samurai-style accent that made me go, “Wait, I did this?” It felt like a total mish-mash, but in the end it did work out to be a human-nature story, so it was memorable for me.

Konishi: Kabukichou Sherlock as a whole is a human-nature story.

Saito: Indeed. I think Director Yoshimura and the screenwriter Kishimoto-san are probably shy, so instead of telling the story directly, they sprinkle it with jokes. But the story itself directly depicts the inner workings of the heart.

Q: You can feel that everywhere throughout the show. For Sherlock, Mycroft appears in Episode 13, and he gave off an uneasy feeling.

Konishi: He’s creepy, right? When the sound director explained him to us, everyone recoiled like “What?!”

Saito: We didn’t just laugh it off like “Ahaha.”

Konishi: It must be hard for Sherlock, being monitored all the time.

After Mycroft shows up, there are some little details that you won’t notice unless you’re watching intently, like positional changes and things disappearing. He sets off all the alarm bells.

Q: Seeing Mycroft’s actions and the state of the prison that Moriarty’s in makes me wonder if it’s all connected to Ward Mayor Moran somehow.

Saito: That’s something I hope you’ll speculate about. In a previous discussion, Seiichiro-kun said that Moriarty is a friendly and sociable boy, but now there’s suddenly scenes that make you think he’s going to start something on his end. The viewers have various different opinions, like maybe he has another motive, or they want to shower him with love because he’s cute, but…

His first goal was to get revenge on Jack, so now that that’s accomplished, the show will follow what he’s thinking while in jail, and what’s actually going on there. From there, I think it’ll lead to a different axis for the story to revolve around.

Q: The original Moriarty was an enemy, but the Moriarty in this series feels more like a lovable character.

Saito: Yes, fate was not kind to him.

Konishi: I think many people are watching this assuming that Sherlock and Moriarty are going to fight, because they hone in on the Sherlock title. However, Moriarty isn’t depicted in a way that makes you think “He’s going to become an enemy eventually” at all, which I thought was a bit strange. Like Soma-kun said, he’s really cute and friendly, so it makes you wonder when he’s going to change his attitude. Then, the first cour ends with him desiring revenge and killing Jack, and we can’t tell whether he’s friend or foe. It makes you wonder if they’re doing that to simplify Moriarty’s “existence as someone for Sherlock to fight” from the original novels.

Now that he’s in jail and the story will show more and more of the events there, I’m sure the viewers will be very interested in finding out what he’s thinking and whether he’s truly friend or foe, because he usually doesn’t talk much about himself. So, please pay attention to those developments from here on out.

Q: It felt like there was something slightly off about him, and we went from his cute appearance to his revenge scene in Episode 11. During the flashbacks in Episode 13, he confesses that he felt that Sherlock resembled him, and rewatching from Episode 1 made me wonder if Sherlock was hiding a side of himself as well. It feels like the perspective is going to change for the second cour.

Konishi: Yes, I think each character’s viewpoint is going to change.

Saito: The start of the first cour was extremely comedic, but a major plot line was moving under the surface, building up the suspense. The second cour is being created with the assumption that everyone now understands how Kabukichou Sherlock’s story is told, and in my opinion, the story gets more complicated from here. It really feels like they’re using anime to accomplish something difficult. Comedy fans will surely enjoy it, but I hope that mystery fans will also speculate from different angles as they watch.

The change from moving forward spreads to all of the characters like a ripple effect

Q: Episode 14 returns to a slice-of-life comedy story, and while we’re enjoying the story for what it is… we’re also anxiously awaiting the next plot development. By the way, it feels like Sherlock and Kyougoku have changed after the Jack incident. Was there anything you were conscious of when acting?

Konishi: I think Moriarty changed the most. For Sherlock it’s a straight extension from before. It’s a matter of what the continuation of his relationships will look like after the events that’ve happened so far.

Q: There’s his actions towards Watson and the other Row House members. For example, do you think his shock therapy on Kyougoku was a natural course to take?

Konishi: It feels like it’s becoming natural for him to extend a hand to others, perhaps because of Watson. It’s like he doesn’t need a reason to expend all his effort to help someone. I get the feeling that his overall relationships are changing thanks to Watson, so Watson is an important influence on him. That well-built young man came along and asked him to take his request, but he gave him the runaround and that timid young man is still at it today. *laughs*

Saito: *laughs*

Konishi: That’s why I think Watson is in an incredibly important position in the story. Sherlock changes a lot because of him, and Moriarty is affected by Sherlock’s changes. Watson also has a certain synergy with the other characters, affecting them as well. In that sense, I guess you could say that Sherlock has changed.

Q: As for Kyougoku, he’s changed because of his crash and recovery after Maki-chan.

Saito: Indeed.

Konishi: He’s such a cool guy *laughs*. He really is precious.

Saito: I think Kyougoku’s changed a lot in ways other than his recovery. Like the story behind the gloves; Kyougoku has many more unique traits than the other characters, and cleanliness is one of them. In Episode 14, he’s not wearing his gloves for the whole time he’s hospitalized, but after regaining himself, he slips his gloves on at the end of the episode and says something along the lines of “The city calls for its ace”… and then steps into poop.

All: *laughs*

Saito: From there, he becomes a truly sympathetic person, who’ll rush to help a bleeding person without worrying about getting blood on himself. In the second cour, you can truly see him growing as a person behind all the gags. I didn’t make any deliberate changes to my acting, but I made a conscious effort to express how he’s changed. Episode 14 was certainly bizarre, though. *laughs*

Konishi: That’s the Kabukichou Sherlock way *laughs*. Kyougoku’s a real badass in the scene later on where he dives into blood of his own free will, despite being squeamish about it. They told us at the recording sessions that he was going to have an episode where he’s really cool, and I think everyone did change their opinion of him after that. *laughs*

Saito: Definitely. We’ll show you Kyougoku’s cool side, everyone! *laughs*

Konishi: We received the same assurance *laughs*.

I’m not sure if you could call it “moving forward,” but even though everyone’s lifestyle remains the same, their attitudes have all taken a small step forward, and now that’s spreading like a ripple effect.

Q: What are your opinions on the new ED song and video?

Konishi: I thought the second cour was Lozareena’s “Hyakuoku Kounen” again. *laughs*

Saito: “Hyakuoku Kounen” is also a wonderful song.

Konishi: Lozareena-san made a guest appearance on LINE LIVE so I got to hear her live, and it was really good.

Saito: I’m jealous.

Konishi: The new ED, Ishizaki Huwie’s “Parade” is good too. Since we watched it after all of the recording was done, we can see how meaningful it is. The things that symbolized Sherlock’s accomplishments and experiences are no longer symbols anymore. I think it’s a great ED with a lot of significance.

Saito: I said this in a previous discussion too, but Kabukichou Sherlock’s music is really stylish.

Konishi: Iga Takuro-san’s songs are a perfect fit.

Saito: It’s great how Kabukichou Sherlock noisily crafts a cruel story, but another great thing about it is its stylish music and visuals.

The ED represents the show’s mellow world really well; it feels like what happens after the noisy conversations, when everyone disperses and are left to their own devices. The more lively the episode, the more sad it is when it’s over. But, I really felt that that definitely isn’t a bad thing. And the ED animation is clean and stylish too.

Konishi: I like the photo with Kyougoku’s weird face on it.

Saito: The one that makes you go “Never mind, Kyougoku’s still…” *laughs*

As Konishi-san said earlier, together with the depictions of previous episodes, it’s an ED that I’d want to listen to while pondering how the series will end.

Q: “Hyakuoku Kounen” and “Parade” are both touching songs. The OP had hints about the first cour hidden in it, so it makes me wonder if the new ED has an intent behind it too.

Konishi: The staff like that kind of thing, so there might be something.

Saito: Why don’t you try enlarging each of those little photos? *laughs* I get the feeling that there’re tons of clues scattered among them.

Konishi: Since it’s a detective story, everyone loves to speculate. Although when I saw the PV from before Kabukichou Sherlock began airing, I thought it revealed too many answers for the first cour.

All: *laughs*

Saito: It had a lot of telling clues in it, and it made it seem like it was a really serious show without any dirty jokes. *laughs*

Konishi: When I started watching it, I saw that Episode 1 had a flood of information. But that jumbled-ness is what makes Kabukichou Sherlock.

If they were going to participate in a collab event, Konishi-san would compete as a pair with Nakamura-san, and Saito-san would go on a cafe date with Murase-san and the others?!

Q: As we asked in the previous interviews too, do you have any requests for each other?

Konishi: Soma-kun has a lot of fans, so I want him to announce “Konishi-san is really good” to his fangirls and raise my popularity.

All: *laughs*

Saito: When Konishi-san came as a guest on my TV show, I invited him for drinks after the filming and he declined. Afterwards, people @ed him on Twitter saying “Please go drinking with Soma-kun.”

All: *laughs*

Konishi: We’d spent pretty much the entire day eating and drinking, so I was stuffed. Since I’d already eaten and drank so much, I said “I kind of just want to go home after this” and the replies just came flooding in *laughs*. So, I do want to go someday.

Saito: In that case, I’ll make my request “I want to go drinking together,” and it’ll be win-win.

Konishi: You’re right. I just have to take a picture of us doing this *poses shoulder-to-shoulder* and post it on Twitter.

All: *laughs*

Saito: That’s it!

Konishi: It might make it into Trending *laughs*. During the show, we said Taiwan would be next, so maybe we can do it in Taiwan.

Q: Kabukichou Sherlock currently has collaborations with Shinjuku Copa Bowl and the spy experience attraction inSPYre. If you were going to go with another cast member, who would you go with and which would you go to?

Konishi: Uhh, I generally don’t socialize during my private time, so I don’t want to go. *laughs*

Saito: *laughs*

Q: What if it was for work?

Konishi: In that case, I’d go with Nakamura-kun since we’re the Sherlock & Watson duo.

Saito: I think everyone would want to buy a DVD of Konishi-san and Nakamura-san going bowling. *laughs*

Konishi: Normally I’d secretly go by myself. I won’t go with anyone because it’s tiring if it’s not for work.

If it’s for work then I’d go with Nakamura-kun as that duo. We could all split into teams like Mary & Lucy and Kyougoku & Toratarou and compete against each other.

Q: Previously, Yamashita-san said that Saito-san seems like he’d be good at riddle-solving, so it might be advantageous to go with someone who seems good at it.

Konishi: Soma-kun is a quick thinker, so I bet he’d have great flashes of insight.

Saito: I’m actually bad at riddle-solving, so I’m jealous of people like Konishi-san and Nakamura-san who can instantly think up things.

Personally, I think I’d have more fun drinking while watching the completed footage than actually participating, so if you two could go by yourselves, that’d be great *laughs*. If I were going, I think I’d go with Seiichiro-kun and Tatsumaru-kun, since we’re close in age and we also sat next to each other at the recordings. The other day, we finally got around to going for yakiniku together, and we went for tea after that as well.

Konishi: Really?!

Saito: Naturally, we wound up talking about Kabukichou Sherlock.

Seiichiro-kun is a polite young man, but he has a fierce passion hidden inside and a surprisingly pointed personality.

On the other hand, Tatsumaru-kun gracefully livens things up, but since he’s been touring the country as part of a theatre troupe ever since he was young, he has a somewhat philosophical side to him.

I want to watch those two very different people go bowling or puzzle-solving together, while I cheer from the sidelines. *laughs*

Konishi: I do feel a sense of understanding from Tatsumaru-kun, and a dazzling sense from Yamashita-kun.

Saito: They’re an interesting pair. Maybe those two could team up, and I could go with Murase Ayumu…

Konishi: That’d work.

Saito: Then the four of us can go on a cafe date. *laughs*

Konishi: You’ll have to make a reservation at the A*A Hotel then.

All: *laughs*

Q: That sounds like it’d be fun.

Konishi: I don’t think anyone would accept the offer. *laughs*

Saito: Murase Ayumu might.

All: *laughs*

Q: Lastly, please give a message for the fans watching the anime.

Saito: Thank you for watching Kabukichou Sherlock into its second cour. I really like how this series is a mishmash of humour, suspense, and human nature. Now that the first cour is over, the series will be gearing up for a new storyline.

If this interview has piqued your interest for the first time, I hope you’ll watch the first cour and join in for the upcoming story. As for the details, I think it’s best if you watch it for yourself, but if there’s one thing I want to bring up, it has to be what’s going to happen to Moriarty from here on out. There obviously has to be something going on, so please focus on his story as a central axis as you watch the series to the end.

Please continue to support Kabukichou Sherlock!

Konishi: As for me, all I have to say is “Please watch it.” *laughs*

Saito: *laughs*

Konishi: Kabukichou Sherlock is a very peculiar show, so I think opinions of it will be divided. Personally, I love it and I look forward to watching it every week.

There’s the original rakugo mystery-solving, and when you think an episode is a self-contained story, there’s actually various clues hidden within. It’s a series with lots of that kind of build-up, and there are still platforms where you can watch it from Episode 1.

Some people may watch Episode 1 and feel that there’s too much information so they can’t handle the detective work, but in that case, you can follow the relationships and inner emotions instead, and there’ll be surprising developments waiting ahead.

So, if you haven’t watched it yet or you stopped a few episodes in, please watch the first cour and keep following until the end. I think your impression of Kabukichou Sherlock will change greatly.

I hope you’ll watch until the end. Thank you.

[Interview] Animate Times – Kabukichou Sherlock Interview No.07 – Konishi Katsuyuki x Saito Soma

Original URL: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1579224447
Published: 2020/1/17

Konishi Katsuyuki (Sherlock Holmes in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Saito Soma (Kyougoku Fuyuto in Kabukichou Sherlock)

Murase Ayumu (Hokari Maki in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Sakamoto Maaya (Irene Adler in Kabukichou Sherlock)

※Contains spoilers up to Episode 12.

Recordings where they felt a strong connection

Q: Both of you have already done one of these interviews before, but since the pairing is different this time, tell us what your impression was of working together on this series.

Konishi: *reading the sample answer directly from the sheet* We see each other often, so there was a sense of security.

Saito: Indeed. *laughs*

Konishi: When we were recording Sherlock, there was a period of 1-2 months where I’d see Soma-kun almost every day.

Saito: It felt unnatural on days when we didn’t meet.

Konishi: Besides the work we were regulars on, we’d also run into each other at other jobs.

Saito: I really felt a connection between us in 2019 *laughs*. Of course, we’ve worked together before as well, but I guess when it rains, it pours.

Konishi: We don’t see each other at all now though. *laughs*

Saito: Yeah. *laughs*

Q: As the story got deeper, did your impressions of each other change?

Konishi: We don’t rank the cast by skill or anything when we look at them, so… nothing changed there. But with roles like Kyougoku, you just can’t help but poke fun at them, and I thought that must be tough. Soma-kun was always laughing in the middle of all that, which I’m thankful for.

Saito: Since Konishi-san and Nakamura-san were messing around with me, it was easy for me to adapt to the recording environment from the start. I’m thankful too, that everyone else joined in on the laughing. *laughs*

Kabukichou Sherlock starts off with a lot of gags and moves towards the serious suspense side in the latter half, but our recording environment was peaceful and I felt comfortable there.

Konishi: Kyougoku started off as a crabby, unpleasant role, but as the episodes progressed, we came to understand that “he’s technically smart, but he has the personality of an idiot…”

Saito: Yeah. *laughs*

Konishi: He’s become a very well-loved character now, and I think that’s part of why we all had so much fun.

Holding back during major developments, and adjusting on the spot

Q: It’s clear from what you’ve said that the recording sessions were fun, but the story itself has taken a heavy turn.

Konishi: It was shocking, right?

Q: When you were recording, did you know what was going to happen later on?

Konishi: They didn’t tell us anything *laughs*. We received a basic storyline, but I purposely didn’t read it. They did give us some explanation though, and we could ask questions if we didn’t understand something in the script, so I did that while acting.

Q: Do you think there’s a difference in your acting between knowing and not knowing?

Konishi: I think so. Knowing and not knowing changes your stance and way of acting, and I think that goes for everyone.

Q: On the other hand, Kyougoku had a scene where he changes so drastically that there was a fan theory believing that he was a fake.

Saito: It’s certainly a series worth speculating about, but when it went on air and I found out about that theory, I thought “So that’s how some people see it!” Although in actuality, he’s not a fake.

Q: The truth was revealed later. When you were acting that scene, did you receive any explanation or direction?

Saito: About that, during the first cour, I had a general idea of where the story was going. For example, I knew who the identity of Jack was. But I didn’t hear anything about Kyougoku going down that path, so when I received the script I was like “Isn’t this a different person?!” *laughs*

Just like Konishi-san, I asked what was going on, and they told me it was the effect of a drug. Then, during the recording, I continued to revise it based on the new information received there.

Q: Was that information shared in front of everyone?

Konishi: Kabukichou Sherlock wasn’t particularly closed off; the sound director and the other staff would explain the situation properly. They’d answer all of our questions about things we didn’t understand each time, so the information was shared to all of us.

Q: It sounds like it’d be exciting when you find out new things there.

Konishi: When we heard that Kyougoku was brainwashed, that sparked a conversation. We speculated about whether Kyougoku and Maki-chan’s relationship was real or fake. *laughs*

Saito: That became a big discussion. “How far did Kyougoku and Maki-chan go?” *laughs*

Konishi: It was a hallucination, a hallucination!

All: *laughs*

Q: Episode 11 was the solution to the Jack case and much was revealed. Sherlock’s rakugo scene felt thorough and complete too.

Saito: That scene looked like a lot of work *laughs*. It went on forever…

Konishi: I was going through the script and it was just page after page of rakugo. I laughed at how long it was. *laughs*

Saito: You really were amazing.

Konishi: During the recording, I didn’t know what the visuals were going to end up like, so I did it the way I wanted to. It wouldn’t be interesting as rakugo if it was just mystery-solving, so I did what I could and left the rest to the production staff.

Q: It was the return of the stunning rakugo.

Konishi: Even just among the rakugo scenes, it’s interesting that there’s various different ways they can play out, like the time when he tried to do rakugo but got interrupted. Personally, I like the faint, light feeling during the rakugo scenes.

Saito: Because the animation is normally quite vivid, right?

Konishi: Since it’s Kabukichou, there’s bright neon lights and the darkness of back alleys and bars. So, I like the soft feeling it gives when it suddenly brightens up with the light colours. It’s also nice how there are a lot of rakugo titles featured.

Saito: The character description says that Sherlock likes rakugo but he isn’t good at it, and I thought that must’ve been difficult to work with.

Konishi: It’s fine, because I’m not good at it either. *laughs*

Saito: That’s not true!

This isn’t related to rakugo, but during the scene where Sherlock gets embarrassed by Irene and starts reciting Jugemu, the script just had one section of Jugemu written out and said to read however much would fit in the allotted time. And then Konishi-san defied expectations by reciting it at hyper-speed. It was so fast; I was floored, thinking “This has to be an art.”

Konishi: Soma-san, that was because there was no need to say it clearly.

All: *laughs*

Konishi: It didn’t have to be properly enunciated.

Saito: It just had to be clear that he was embarrassed *laughs*. Even though the rakugo scenes had varying assigned lengths too, Konishi-san usually got them down in a single take, and I thought that was amazing.

Konishi: During recording, they told me not to worry about it, but in the end it still has to fit the anime’s time, so it was difficult to match that. As for the what and how, I made the clear distinction that this rakugo is for mystery-solving, not for telling an interesting story to entertain the audience. It’s a place where he displays the deductive reasoning that he went through.

Murase Ayumu-san’s ad-libbing continued into Episode 11’s ending?!

Q: The latter half of the first cour had many highlights, but some of the most memorable ones were Kyougoku’s with Maki-chan. What did you think of those two?

Konishi: Kyougoku really is a cold guy. A cruel man who passed the florist’s request because it was the minimum fee. *laughs*

Saito: *laughs* His first priority is to complete his objective. And after he starts dating Maki-chan, he suddenly starts acting high and mighty towards Watson.

Konishi: He became an adult, huh?

Saito: His “Don’t be afraid of failure” there was funny because it reminds you of something else. *laughs*

His outfit at the time also caught my interest… It reminded me of a character I voiced in another one of Director Yoshimura’s works. ((Probably referencing Dance with Devils))

The scenes with Maki-chan were definitely memorable, and the bed scene had perfect facial expressions and body lines even at the storyboard stage. The scene where Sherlock chases her down and she redoes her lipstick reminded me of a villain from a certain famous work when I saw the storyboard version, and even the completed version felt similar.

Also, Murase Ayumu is skilled at voicing characters like that. At the end, the ending theme crossfades in as the voiced lines fade out, but during the recording, he kept ad-libbing even after that.

It was an impactful character, fitting for the first cour’s boss.

There were also tons of little references, like the “HIGH QUALITY” card and the AMA Hotel. I think many of them were added after everything else was complete.

Konishi: The streets and small items didn’t have text on them during the recording, and sometimes there was only the outline. We didn’t know it at the time, but the staff love playing around with those. They added many things that we wouldn’t know about, so I’m sure the viewers have been discovering a lot of them.

Q: The characters and overall impression created by the cast during recording and the staff’s playful additions expand the fans’ imagination. Regarding Sherlock, I’m sure many people were struck by the scene where he apologizes after getting punched by Watson. What was it like voicing that?

Konishi: Sherlock wasn’t the type to get involved with people, but being with Watson is slowly changing him, and I don’t think he’s fully aware of that. I think he wants to know what emotions are and how they work, but he’s truly unconcerned about what those emotions lead to or how other people feel. That’s why he has no issue interacting with people unsympathetically, but now he’s gradually becoming more and more humane. This was discussed at the recording too, and the way he was able to say “I’m sorry” was a major thing.

Later on when Watson declares himself Sherlock’s assistant, the former Sherlock would’ve instantly said “Hell no,” but the fact that he instead accepts it by saying “Screw it up and you’re fired on the spot” proves that Watson has a major effect on him.

Q: Watson had been dejected ever since Irene’s entrance, so as a fan, I was happy to see him become Sherlock’s assistant.

Konishi: It was depicted with extreme care in that sense. While they had something of a duo going on from the start, they weren’t formally a team yet… so, please keep watching.

Saito: Watson was surprisingly good at handling Sherlock from the very start. It’s like when Sherlock asks “Do you want to know?”, Watson tries to get on his good side by acting interested. *laughs*

Konishi: He doesn’t know what to do with that person *laughs*. He buys a ton of weird canned food only to get told “I don’t like these ones.”

Saito: Watson’s cute, huh? Nakamura-san’s acting was a perfect match for those lines like “There’s nowhere for this old man to go,” or after getting his picture taken without permission, “What are you doing?!”

The viewers are mainly following the story from Watson’s perspective, so the way their partnership makes a comeback after that excessive downturn has a dramatic flair to it.

Konishi: Now it’s a matter of what happens next.

Saito: Indeed, and Episode 11 feels like a temporary stopping point.

Konishi: Even though the air date for the next episode is already displayed, many people thought this series was ending after one cour.

Saito: If it ends here, then Kyougoku would remain out of the game, and he’ll be the only one not redeemed, so… (we can’t let it end here).

Q: Since a lot of people were talking about Episode 11 when it aired, it looks like there are people who are going to get into the series now, as well as more people expressing excitement for the second cour.

Konishi: The viewers have varying perspectives. Since it’s a work where we do what we want, the opinions are actually quite clearly divided. But we all thought it was really interesting when we voiced it, so I hope more people will watch it, even if they’re only jumping in now.

Konishi-san’s waiting for the return of Irene (CV: Sakamoto Maaya)

Q: The story was laid out quite cleanly up to Episode 11, but I’m interested in seeing what’ll happen with the remaining unsolved mysteries in the second cour.

Konishi: Haha, it’s crazy.

Q: I’m really curious, so please give us a little hint!

Konishi: Kyougoku gets his chance to shine, Sherlock gets into trouble, and I’m sure it won’t go the way everyone’s expecting.

Saito: Indeed *laughs*. When you watch Episode 12, you’ll probably think “What was everything up until now for? It’s going back to a slice-of-life?” That’s how it leads into the second cour. I recommend honing in on Moriarty’s jail part, because you might be able to notice some things.

Q: Are there any interesting characters in the second cour?

Konishi: Plenty. At the end of Episode 12, a suspicious character voiced by Otsuka Hochu-san makes his appearance, and there are also characters that whisper mysterious numbers.

Saito: Oh, I also whispered those numbers as an additional role. There were a lot of extra roles in the second cour, huh?

Konishi: Yamashita-kun also got those extra roles thrown his way, and I felt bad for him *laughs*. There was an otaku, a policeman, etc. It seemed like a struggle.

Saito: You’ll have me and Seiichiro-kun doing our dialogues with each other, but when you listen closely, we’re also the policemen that’re scattered around.

All: *laughs*

Saito: It’s something you can enjoy besides the main story. “Was that voice just now…?!”

Konishi: It’s hard to list upcoming characters without getting into spoiler territory. Personally, I’m wondering if Irene will show up. *laughs*

Saito: She’s a lovely character.

Konishi: Sakamoto Maaya-chan who voiced her also talked about how interesting Kabukichou Sherlock was, and said she’d definitely watch it when it aired on TV.

Saito: When we met at another workplace, she was interested in how the story was going in parts that she didn’t appear in. And when I see the other cast members in other places, we always talk about how fun it is.

Konishi: It’s well-received among the cast. And since the recording finished before the show began airing, we were even more anxious about the broadcast. We couldn’t do the recording while watching the aired version and debating our opinions, so I’m curious about what the rest of the cast thinks after seeing the broadcast version now.

Q: After the series finishes airing, there’ll be an event held in April, and as a fan, I’m looking forward to hearing what you all have to say. Lastly, here’s a personal question: This series incorporates elements of traditional Japanese culture, such as rakugo and lucky items (daruma dolls, beckoning cats). Do you have any personal connection or interest in anything from Japanese culture?

Konishi: This is the exact kind of thing I did on Soma-kun’s personal variety show. Like candy crafting. *laughs*

Saito: Yeah, it’s about Japanese culture after all *laughs*. We also visited shrines and whatnot.

Konishi: I said I wanted to do falconry or horseback archery on his show, but they couldn’t organize it at the time. Those are the kinds of things I’m interested in though.

Saito: Have you ever done horseback archery before?

Konishi: No, which is why I want to. There are apparently places where you can experience it, though.

Saito: I see. I experienced a lot of different things on that show, like sword fighting. Playing the taiko was fun.

The idea for the program came about because I had a “traditional” image and looked like the type to wear traditional Japanese clothes. I did have a considerable interest in it beforehand, but through that show, I learned that there were many things I didn’t know as well as I thought I did, such as shrine etiquette.

Now I’m a lot more interested in it. For this series, I went to see a few rakugo shows, and I’d still like to see more.

Lately I’ve been interested in ukiyo-e, so I’d like to get involved with something related to that, like an exhibit narration.

Konishi: You should draw a shunga (erotic ukiyo-e).

All: *laughs*

Saito: That… would probably sell *laughs*. A collection of 48, each drawn by a different male voice actor. That sounds really fun!

Konishi: Drawn by 48 voice actors and combined into a single book. *laughs*

Q: That sounds like something the female fans would be interested in, for various reasons.

Konishi: I wonder if it’d get banned from being sold.

Saito: Maybe it’s too aggressive?

All: *laughs*

Q: Thank you. We’ll be talking about the second cour in the next interview.

[Interview] Animate Times – Kabukichou Sherlock Interview No.04 – Yamashita Seiichiro x Saito Soma

Original URL: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1574273014
Published: 2019/11/25

Yamashita Seiichiro (James Moriarty in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Saito Soma (Kyougoku Fuyuto in Kabukichou Sherlock)

Suzuki Tatsuhisa (Sugimoto in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Tachibana Tatsumaru (Kobayashi Toratarou in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Suwabe Junichi (Mrs. Hudson in Kabukichou Sherlock)

※Contains spoilers up to Episode 7.

Episode 5 nonchalantly displays Moriarty’s nature

Q: What was a memorable scene from the episodes that have aired so far?

Soma: There’s too many to list. Was the bathhouse trip Episode 4?

Seiichiro: The Momotaros, right?

Soma: At the end of the A-part, Moriarty says “Don’t worry, he’s a famous detective!” and it shows Sherlock, with a circled “Sher” over his crotch.

Seiichiro: But during the recording, it was dangling in plain sight. *laughs*

Soma: Sherlock shakes off the water and Moriarty goes “Don’t worry about a thing!”, and I thought yeah, Seiichiro-kun’s good at this kind of thing.

Seiichiro: Am I?

Soma: You didn’t put too much implication into it, and it was a perfect, amusing ending to the A-part. It was also funny how Watson had no idea how the bathhouse worked.

The next episode was about the sisters, Mary and Lucy?

Seiichiro: With the sumo wrestler.

Q: Right. If you pay attention to Moriarty, we find out he has a younger sister in Episode 3, and in Episode 5 he has an interesting conversation with Lucy.

Seiichiro: He casually reveals his nature in that conversation with Lucy.

Soma: Yeah.

Seiichiro: He doesn’t try to help Bunmaru, instead saying “I think he’s about to jump. Don’t you?” I thought long and hard over whether to insert meaning into that line or to let it pass smoothly. When I’m voicing Moriarty, it’s important to make him “normal,” but it’s not that there’s nothing hiding within, considering he tore apart a butterfly. I’m looking forward to seeing what meaning those kinds of scenes hold later on, when I watch with the completed visuals.

Soma: In Episode 6, that one guy had a lot of impact. *laughs*

Seiichiro: *laughs*

Soma: The animation for that rap scene was really good. Actually, the animation is great overall. Moriarty’s really cute.

Seiichiro: Moriarty’s become that “beautiful girl” type who they have to keep looking pretty.

Soma: Kyougoku’s chin sticks out, so the same doesn’t apply to him. *laughs*

But so far, I think Episode 6 was the best one yet. It made me cry. Tora’s a good character, and it felt like I was watching a different anime. Episode 3, the Kyougoku one, made me tear up too, but out of laughter: “It’s over… the party, that is.”

Seiichiro: Indeed. However, we were oblivious to the fact that that memory would be recovered much later on.

Soma: Honestly.

Seiichiro: We can’t talk about it, so please look forward to it. *laughs*

The stories behind the Detective’s Row House members, and Suzuki Tatsuhisa-san’s character construction

Soma: Back to the topic at hand, Tatsuhisa-san was amazing in Episode 6.

Seiichiro: Sugimoto, right?

Soma: I wonder where he got the ideas for that character construction. When he went “Tamaaa!” I was like, why?

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: That betrayed my expectations. I was like, “Whoa?! That’s how he’s doing it?!” Which shelf did he pull that out of? It was a masterpiece.

Soma: The rap line where he goes “And for some reason, I’m mooning your ass” was exactly as written in the script, but it made me think, “Seriously, why?!”

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: The rap was funny, but I thought I shouldn’t think too deeply into it.

Soma: There are a lot of shocking scenes, like drinking tons of Ramune and going “I can fly,” and Chinkill’s group telling Moriarty to “get fapping” to their birthday present for him.

Seiichiro: The photo book! After that, the highlights disappear from Moriarty’s eyes and he says that dead “Thanks.”

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: When I saw the completed footage, the book cover was spicier than I thought it’d be. You could kind of see something.

Soma: The pose was dangerous too. Speaking of Episode 3, Sherlock’s sudden “Poop.” was funny too, and it was cute when he was rolling on the bed going “It can’t be Pu…”

Seiichiro: Yeah, it was surprising because he’d solved all the cases flawlessly until then. It showed us that he isn’t perfect, and the two-stage development was fun.

Overall, the art style, or rather the colour usage, is pretty vivid. I think it’s intentional, but besides the neon lights, the kids’ squad is also made up of a variety of races.

Soma: Yeah, those kids have a lot of personality to them too, like the girl that says *mimics voice* “Marry someone who makes 100 million yen a year.”

Seiichiro: Their faces were detailed too, like Renko who Hondo-san voices.

Soma: The animators really were attentive.

Q: Renko looks like one of the younger members, so I was surprised by her foul-mouthed line in Episode 6. *laughs*

Seiichiro: The Kaneko boss was cool in that episode too.

Soma: Episode 6 really was great. When Yoshio-kun reveals the truth to Moriarty and Moriarty says, “You may be able to be the leader of this town,” the inflection there was good. I liked how it ended with “ja ne” instead of “yo” or “kamo na.” If I were Yoshio, I’d cry too.

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: We became Yoshio there. *laughs*

Even though the Row House crew all fight and curse at each other, in the end, they have a deep, inseparable connection. The friendship, love, and sense of family really shows in Episode 6, and I was moved by how Tora was willing to sacrifice himself to save them.

Soma: It was also great how he cried when he saw that the person he saved before drew a manga with a protagonist that looked like him.

Seiichiro: What was his name again?

Staff: Wakazou. (Greenhorn)

Soma: That name’s a bit lazy, huh? *laughs*

Seiichiro: Indeed *laughs*. He also wore a beret, like he was some kind of “God of Manga.” When I watched the broadcast version, there were a lot of funny parts that made me go “No way.” *laughs*

Soma: There’re a lot of obvious references.

Seiichiro: Like Cobra.

Soma: We could go on forever listing them, but at any rate, I think it’s a series that “breaks its shell” in a good way.

Q: I’m sure some people have noticed the various references. When you watch it the first time, you only grasp the main story, but if you look closely, there are things tucked away in places.

Soma: Yes, there are so many little references. With the recording done, I know I can say that I want you to watch it multiple times.

Jack the Ripper, Kyougoku’s love story, and the upcoming new characters are a must-see!

Q: We’re getting more and more interested in the upcoming episodes. What should we look out for?

Seiichiro: I think it’d have to be one of the major themes in the show, Jack the Ripper. It becomes key to later developments.

Soma: We’ve been talking all about the funny parts so far, but this series is constructed cleverly, with quite a lot of foreshadowing hidden among the comedic parts. If you look at the non-funny parts, I think you’ll gradually realize that the story is quietly making steady progress. Please watch as these little scenes converge towards their resolution.

Seiichiro: It’s like the points form a line. Also, the casual remarks made by the Row House members become set-ups for later, so I think there’s value in scrutinizing them now.

Soma: Also, if I can make one personal addition…

Seiichiro: Go ahead.

Soma: “Kyougoku’s crush.” It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to call it the most important theme in the series… well, actually, yes it would be *laughs*. But it makes you want to watch over him tenderly.

Seiichiro: Indeed.

Soma: Besides that… there’s a lot of new characters that haven’t appeared yet, or that you haven’t seen everything about yet.

Seiichiro: Yeah, like Mycroft.

Soma: There’s a scene with Mycroft where he says “It’s been a long time, my brother” to Sherlock who’s hiding under a table, and the way he holds his arms up *poses with arms covering his face* made me think “Oh, this is a dangerous one.”

Seiichiro: He’s a weirdo behind that overly serious exterior.

Soma: He’s the real deal. Please look forward to the new characters like him. *laughs*

Q: In Episode 7, we meet Irene and a guest character voiced by Sugita Tomokazu-san, so we’re at a point where we’re wondering who else will be appearing. When we asked what we should look out for in a previous discussion, Konishi-san said “Kyougoku,” so there must be something else about him on the way.

Seiichiro: I guarantee you that you’ll be cheering him on fondly.

Soma: Thank you.

Anyway, there’s too many highlights to list, but personally, from a viewer’s perspective, I really enjoy entertainment that’s a big mix of different elements, with scenes that are fun, sad, strange, and scary. This series is a jumble of all of those things while also having an intense lead-up into the climax, so please at least watch until Episode 12 first. Really, just once, that’s all I’m asking.

All: *laughs*

Q: Looking back at the episodes that’ve aired so far, what do you think Sherlock and Watson are in relation to your own characters?

Soma: Generally, Kyougoku isn’t shown to have any kind of special feelings towards Sherlock and Watson. He’s more concerned about himself, but later on, he has more conversations with Watson, and they get closer.

Seiichiro: He starts calling him John, right?

Soma: Yes, all of a sudden.

All: *laughs*

Soma: I’d like you to pay attention to why he becomes friends with Watson, because rather than him opening up his heart and growing closer as a result of mutual understanding, there are circumstances that force their relationship to change. You’ll understand when you see it.

Q: At first I thought that the detectives were rivals with Sherlock, but it seems that that isn’t the case.

Soma: Kyougoku has a lot of self-confidence, so he tends to look down on the other detectives, and he doesn’t see Sherlock as a worthy opponent. In Episode 3, he says “Now, I think it’s time you admitted your mistake,” B-zou-style, and it feels like he generally tries to get ahead by himself. But it’s still early in the series, so please look out for what happens next.

Moriarty and Sherlock’s first meeting and the nature of their relationship also become an essential point?!

Seiichiro: As for Moriarty, he’s surrounded by grown-up detectives as well as a detective his own age (Mary), but among all those people, this high schooler is able to talk to the eccentric Sherlock as an equal, with the same values and perspective, unlike Watson. I found this intriguing, and I’m sure the viewers do too. You can sum it up as “It’s because he’s a genius high schooler,” but as for why everyone’s favourite Moriarty-kun ended up that way with Sherlock, it all goes back to their first meeting. I hope you’ll look forward to seeing how they met and what kinds of conversations they had that led to what they have now.

Also, I think Moriarty sees Sherlock as special. For example, even though Kyougoku looks down on people, he can still hold conversations with them. Sherlock feels different in nature, and the other detectives have difficulty communicating with him. Despite that, his perception and skillful deduction are a cut above the rest, and he was probably already a special existence there before Watson showed up. I think the nature of his relationship with Moriarty, who can interact with him on equal footing, will become a critical point.

In that sense, I think he was the one to cast the first stone at Sherlock’s heart, not Watson. They get along well, and it feels like they’re on the same wavelength. Sherlock has something that draws Moriarty to him. I’m sure Moriarty feels comfortable being with him.

Q: In Episode 4, Moriarty starts calling Watson by his name instead of “Old Man.”

Seiichiro: I’m sure he must be interested in Watson as well. Please look forward to the future changes in their relationships.

Q: Here’s a personal question themed around the series. Do you have any memories of the real Kabukichou?

Soma: No… It appears in a lot of fictional works, and in reality it’s close by since we work in Tokyo, but since it’s not really somewhere I can go, my idea of the place probably gets more exaggerated as time goes on.

Kabukichou Sherlock takes place in a fictional world, but I still see Kabukichou as that kind of chaotic place. I don’t really go there; in fact I don’t think I’ve ever been there, and yet it feels like a place I know well. It has the impression of an abstract district, like something from a fictional story.

Seiichiro: My memory of the place is from when I first started working. I was trying to walk home to Shinjuku from a shop in East Shinjuku, and I got lost in Kabukichou.

Soma: Ohh.

Seiichiro: I didn’t know which way to go, and I was surrounded by neon lights in all directions, with signs and people advertising their “services”… I came from the countryside, so it felt like I’d entered a fictional city from a drama. There were people like Kabukichou Sherlock’s Chinkill, and I was pretty scared.

Like Soma-san said, it’s close by, but it feels unrealistic. Even though there are people who live there, it feels dramatic and fictional. It was a mystifying feeling back then. I was excited but scared, not sure if I’d be able to return home, and panicking over what to do if I got taken somewhere strange. It would’ve been scary if there were barkers like Dylan.

But the arch you see in the key visual is impressive, and it has that admirable “When you reach the other side of the tunnel…” feeling to it.

Q: True, even though it’s inside Shinjuku, the area beyond the neon gate feels like a different world.

Seiichiro: It’s a unique place. It has that underground feel, but on the other hand, it’s not like that throughout the entire district. It has regular movie theatres too, and they do accept outsiders, although it has that “if you underestimate it, you’ll get burned” atmosphere as well.

Soma: Since I don’t go there, it’s like my internal image of it hasn’t been updated.

Q: For younger people in other regions who haven’t seen Shinjuku, they might watch Kabukichou Sherlock and think that’s the kind of place it is.

Soma: I think so too. I’m from a rural area too, and I think Tokyo represents this vague feeling of admiration and longing, so that might actually be a good thing. For example, if I meet someone 10 years later who became a voice actor after watching Kabukichou Sherlock, I might decide to take them to the real Kabukichou. *laughs*

Seiichiro: It could be like a pilgrimage. It’s nice when things expand like that.

Yamashita-san and Saito-san request a one-on-one chat over drinks and a Hiroshima tour

Q: It’d be great if this series leads to something like that. Now for another series-themed question, do you two have any requests for each other?

Seiichiro: Detective Soma-san? He does seem like he’d be good at riddle-solving.

Soma: Hmm, I’d just want to go shopping together or something.

Seiichiro: That’s an offer, right? *laughs* Let’s go.

Soma: I usually don’t go clothes shopping with friends, but I like the way Seiichiro-kun normally dresses. We might have similar tastes.

Seiichiro: He talks to me about music as well, so I think so too. It’s an honour.

Soma: Even today… *pulls out a hat from his bag that’s a similar colour and shape to the one that Seiichiro is wearing* See?

Seiichiro: Ah! It does look similar. We’re matching.

Soma: So I’d like to go clothes shopping together, and have a relaxing one-on-one chat over drinks.

Seiichiro: That sounds good. Let’s do it for real.

Soma: I’d also like a tour of his hometown. I don’t think I’ve ever been to Hiroshima before, so I’d like to visit.

Seiichiro: It’d be an honour. Hiroshima often gets featured in anime, and there are a lot of other voice actors from there.

Soma: Yeah. Please take me on a tour of Hiroshima.

Seiichiro: Of course. You’re like… a scholar to me, so there’s a lot I want to talk about. That doesn’t have to be a request, right?! *laughs*

All: *laughs*

Q: You could accomplish it at the same time as Saito-san’s request.

Soma: All right, so first we’ll meet at Kabukichou and talk all night, and then we’ll go to Hiroshima.

Seiichiro: Sounds good.

Q: There’s also a night bus from Shinjuku… How many hours does it take?

Seiichiro: That brings back memories. It departs at 10 p.m. and arrives at about 8 a.m. the next morning. *laughs*

Soma: That’s rough…

Seiichiro: It’s a fond memory from my younger days, going home while complaining about the soreness.

Also, Soma-san knows a lot about books and music, and he’s released his own books, so I want to learn about his recommendations and interests… Basically, I just want to talk to him, even though I’m already doing that right now.

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: I just want to be the interviewer.

Q: So your request is to be Saito-san’s interviewer. *laughs*

Seiichiro: I’d start with “What led to your debut?” since I think that’s something you only see in magazine interviews.

Soma: True, we don’t get a chance to talk about why we became voice actors in the first place.

Q: It looks like both of your requests are to get closer to each other, but they’re also fitting for the next question, which is “Kabukichou Sherlock has a web radio, manga adaptation, and novel adaptation as well, but is there anything else you’d like to do?”

Seiichiro: The manga and novel adaptations sound interesting.

Soma: I’m interested in a potential collab cafe. Something like “Sherlock’s Special Whipped Cream Sushi”…

Q: A collab cafe menu was discussed in a previous interview too, and the fried rice with canned peaches was referenced.

Seiichiro: Canned peach fried rice…

Soma: It’d work if it only looked that way, and the taste was different. Also, that “Ramune that gives you energy.” And, what was it called, the Dokkiri-man sticker? I want that Rakugo Camel too.

Seiichiro: That sticker wasn’t on the back of the phone, right? It was where you flick the screen.

Soma: That was really bad *laughs*. As for what I’d like to do…

Q: Yamashita-san mentioned mystery-solving earlier. That would be a nice thing to do.

Soma: I’d want to do it with everyone together.

Seiichiro: There’s already an event planned for April 2020, so I’m curious about what we’ll be doing there.

Q: There’s a quiz corner in the web radio.

Seiichiro: I heard from Tatsumaru-kun that it was really hard.

Q: Tachibana-san and the other host Suwabe-san were debating whether it was even a feasible quiz.

Looking forward to the soundtracks and the drama CDs♪

Soma: To be honest, I want to do drama CDs. The anime has a set length that we talk according to, and at most we can add a little bit of ad-libbing.

When we were recording the drama CDs for the BD/DVD bonuses, it turned into something crazy because we didn’t have enough time…

Seiichiro: We had to record other things in the same time slot, so we were panicking because time was running out. Everyone was clattering around.

Soma: Yeah, it was basically recorded in a single take, and that live feeling was fun. *laughs*

Seiichiro: It was interesting. *laughs*

Soma: Drama CDs are where we have the most freedom. Even if your ad libs or lines overlap, it’s still fine, so I’d like to do one with everyone.

Q: It sounds like it has a different atmosphere from anime recording.

Soma: I think our clattering made it into that drama CD though *laughs*. It’s probably noisier than usual.

Seiichiro: A readers theatre would be interesting too. I’m sure everyone wants to see Konishi-san’s rakugo live.

Soma: Konishi-san said that “Sherlock isn’t supposed to be very good at rakugo,” so I think it’s difficult to do that so-called “character rakugo.”

Seiichiro: Originally, you’re not supposed to change your voice for rakugo, but he said he did it on purpose. I’m sure it must be different when it’s illustrations instead of real life.

Konishi-san’s rakugo is really good in that it holds up no matter what the subject is. For this series, I think a drama CD would be better than character songs…

Soma: Oh, but I want to hear B-zou-san’s character song. I also want to read B-zou-san’s “Western Dream” book. I also want goods that make you wonder who would buy such things. Like a room key from the “HIGH QUALITY” hotel Kyougoku uses in a later episode. *laughs*

Seiichiro: Or a Cobra glove *laughs*. You could use it as a hot pot scoop or buy a toy gun and play pretend. One of those “who benefits from this existing” goods.

Soma: I really want one! Aren’t nonsensical goods great?

Seiichiro: I think it’d be possible to make it.

Q: Another possibility is a figure that plays B-zou lines when you push a button. I know I’d want to keep pushing the button to hear all of them.

Soma: Yeah! Like *mimics voice* “That’s wild!”

Seiichiro: I like it!

All: *laughs*

Soma: It could say things like “Your heart is becoming hard.” I really want one so I can use it when I don’t know what to say during a radio or event.

Seiichiro: It’d be even better if it could translate for you.

Soma: As for character songs, there are characters that sing, like Mrs. Hudson.

Q: In Episode 4, the rock/anisong singer Gero-san made a guest appearance too.

Seiichiro: It was a powerful performance. And since they went to the trouble of recording Mrs. Hudson’s song, I’m hoping it’ll be included on the soundtrack.

Soma: All of the music is really good. The OP, ED, and BGM are all perfect. Nakamura-san was also wondering if the song would be on the soundtrack, and I want it too.

Seiichiro: The BGM is great and brings the series’ messy parts together. Since a soundtrack release is guaranteed, I’m looking forward to it.

Q: Finally, please give a message for the fans watching the anime.

Soma: We’ve already finished the recording, and we were able to enjoy it from various angles. I suspect that people will have various different opinions about this series, but at the current time of airing, the story is approaching its core. From here the series shows a different face, so I implore you to watch until the end. Once you know the whole story, I’d be delighted if you’d watch it a second and third time.

Please support the dream of the Detective’s Row House’s steadfast ace, Kyougoku Fuyuto. I hope you’ll continue watching Kabukichou Sherlock.

Seiichiro: I’m really happy to see all of the reactions the series has gotten since Episode 1 aired. It’s pretty rare for the recording to already be completed at this point, so every week, I anxiously await seeing those reactions to all of the hard work everyone put in.

Moriarty’s story is only just beginning. There are some painful, uneasy parts, but I hope you’ll enjoy it with the feeling of attending a show at a rakugo theatre. Even if not every episode grips you, I hope you’ll be curious enough to come watch, and that some of the stories will be to your liking. It’s a detective show, but you can also clear your mind and laugh at the gags all you want. I hope it’ll give the viewers energy and a change of pace.

That said, it also has emotional moments and an overarching story, so I hope you’ll follow along and enjoy the quirky characters and unexpected twists. Lastly, I look forward to the time when we’ll be able to discuss it together. Your comments are what motivate me to work hard, so please continue to support Kabukichou Sherlock.

[Interview] Animate Times – Kabukichou Sherlock Interview No.03 – Yamashita Seiichiro x Saito Soma

Original Article: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1573202514
Published: 2019/11/11

Yamashita Seiichiro (James Moriarty in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Saito Soma (Kyougoku Fuyuto in Kabukichou Sherlock)

Konishi Katsuyuki (Sherlock Holmes in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Nakamura Yuichi (John H. Watson in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Tachibana Tatsumaru (Kobayashi Toratarou in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Suwabe Junichi (Mrs. Hudson in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Murase Ayumu (Hokari Maki in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Seki Tomokazu (Uchida B-zou in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Horii Chado (Chinkill Masumi and Potter in Kabukichou Sherlock)
Aoyama Yutaka (Michel Belmont in Kabukichou Sherlock)

※Contains spoilers up to Episode 7.

The director’s advice for Moriarty was “honesty and boyishness”

Q: First, please introduce the characters you voice.

Soma: *looks at Seiichiro* Shouldn’t we start with Morimori?

Seiichiro: Are we starting with Morimori?

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: Moriarty appears from Episode 1, but he has the role of an extremely ordinary high school student that drops by the misfit-filled Detective’s Row House.

That said, he’s capable of interacting on equal terms with Sherlock, understanding the man’s quirks that even Watson has difficulties with. So he seems like a strange, clever boy… at the moment. *laughs*

Soma: If you’ve been keeping up with the show so far, you should already know that Kyougoku is the steadfast ace of the Detective’s Row House. A keen wit, superior intelligence, smooth moves, and a cool demeanour—he’s got it all. Among all of the eccentric members of the Detective’s Row House, he plays the role of the lady-killer.

Q: Was it easy to grasp how to act as the characters?

Soma: Moriarty had some pretty detailed directions at the start, right?

Seiichiro: Yes. I was also informed of some of Moriarty’s future plot developments at the audition. But that said, calculating backwards from that didn’t feel right, nor did over-creating the role by myself or acting eccentrically to match the other detectives.

I tried to act with pure feelings, to make him come off as an honest person similar to Watson, while making the viewers wonder what his role would be. Director Yoshimura Ai also told me to emphasize that honesty and boyishness.

Q: We were told that at the auditions, Sherlock, Watson, and Moriarty were selected by looking at the balance between them. How was it for you?

Seiichiro: There was a really wide range of Sherlocks. I took the audition with Konishi-san who voices him, so I saw the prototype for Sherlock and there were various different types. There was a more “evil” Sherlock, and I thought it was amazing how each actor had unique sensibilities and rakugo styles.

I also auditioned for Watson, but I didn’t experiment much with that one. On the other hand, when I considered Moriarty’s age and disposition, I thought he’d have more possibilities and more people capable of voicing him, so I’d have to compete with a Moriarty of my very own. I usually don’t feel that kind of reaction at the audition stage.

Kyougoku Fuyuto’s character was established after Saito Soma was chosen as the voice actor?!

Q: What about Saito-san?

Seiichiro: There wasn’t an audition for Kyougoku, right?

Soma: Right, Kyougoku didn’t have an audition. I auditioned for Moriarty as well. Due to the audition time slots, there were a different number of people coming for the three main characters. When I went, there weren’t many people auditioning for Moriarty, so I kind of forcibly went, “I have free time after this, so…”

Seiichiro: I see.

Soma: I probably acted out Moriarty five times with five different patterns, thinking “I have to get Moriarty after this!” …but I was wrong.

All: *laughs*

Soma: I think they probably took those suggestions into account when they made me Kyougoku.

At first, I took the audition with the intent of voicing Moriarty, but back then, I didn’t know the full extent of how the series was going to link rakugo and mystery-solving. When I found out, I thought they were making something very interesting and novel. The director, the sound director Nagasaki Yukio-san, the screenwriter Kishimoto Taku-san, and all of the rest of the staff were having a lot of fun creating it.

A long while after I got the role of Kyougoku, I was talking to Kishimoto-san who I’ve worked with a lot, and he said that when they had the script meeting, all of the staff agreed that “If Saito Soma’s voicing him, let’s make him a total nutcase.”

The result is what you see now.

All: *laughs*

Soma: The recordings are a lot of fun, because there’re so many oddballs. Kyougoku acts cool, although the initial direction I was given was, “Just talk in an ikemen voice. It’s funnier the more seriously he believes that he’s cool.” *laughs*

I think that his dialogues will have a more natural, on-the-spot tempo if I don’t solidify his character too much. I let his dreams of rising up in the world and his virgin naivete symbolize his inflated ego. Each episode, I aim to strike a balance where others see him as a huge narcissist, but he doesn’t see it himself.

I’m not sure if I’d call his character “easy to grasp,” but whenever Kyougoku speaks, Konishi-san and Nakamura-san would be like, “Hey, can you stop messing around? We’re being serious here.” *laughs*

Seiichiro: Right, during the test run. *laughs*

Soma: They’d tease me like, “We have someone from the wrong series here,” so I thought I had the best role in the show, recording-wise.

Seiichiro: Even when you were ad-libbing, they’d tell you “Shut up.”

All: *laughs*

Soma: It’s true. There were a lot of “ad lib the rest” parts in the script, and I tried my best, but I’d get loving retorts in return.

Seiichiro: Someone would whisper “Kyougoku’s such a nuisance,” and the room would calm down. *laughs*

Soma: And “I’m trying to solve a mystery right now.”

Seiichiro: “Can you stop being like that?” Of course, we were just kidding!

All: *laughs*

Soma: Anyway, the recordings were full of endless laughter.

Seiichiro-kun and I are close in age, and we often sat together with Tatsumaru-kun who voices Kobayashi Toratarou. Konishi-san, Nakamura-san, and Suwabe-san kept things rolling, so it was a good recording atmosphere. I think that’s why it was so satisfying to mess around as Kyougoku.

Q: After hearing this, I now understand how Kyougoku’s “doesn’t think of himself as strange” mindset makes him seem even stranger.

Soma: Most strange people are like that. I want to emphasize that it’s the fact that they think they’re normal that makes them weird.

Seiichiro: They lack the self-awareness, just like geniuses do.

Saito-san likes Yamashita-san’s smooth ad libs

Q: The two of you were also both in Haruchika ~Haruta to Chika wa Seishun suru~ among other series. What did you think of each other in Kabukichou Sherlock?

Seiichiro: Soma-san has been helping me ever since my debut. In Haruchika, my character was the senpai, but we were also together in various other roles and series. This time, we got to work together as characters with a new degree of closeness, and returning to the topic of Kyougoku, it was unknown how Soma-san was going to flesh him out.

At the audition, there was only the cool-looking artwork. I never thought he’d be a character like that… and when Soma-san got to voice him, he completely exceeded my expectations. I was frustrated but happy.

Soma: *laughs*

Seiichiro: I was able to see Soma-san’s vivid depiction of “an actor repaints their role.” I was impressed all over again. It was such a weird Soma-san… role!

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: I think this might be my first time seeing Soma-san playing a weird role.

Soma: That’s true. Most of the other series we were in together were on the serious side.

Seiichiro: In Haruchika, Soma-san was a proper, genius type. The character had a bit of a quirk, but nothing to the level of Kyougoku. *laughs*

Soma-san, if you were to rank your characters by eccentricity, how high would Kyougoku place?

Soma: I actually don’t think Kyougoku is that eccentric; he’s just a pure fellow. I’ve seen the completed footage up to Episode 12, and the episodes starting here make me think he’s cute. But, people aren’t one-sided. He has an unpleasant side to him too, and his outward appearance really is cool, and he’s fairly young at the age of 23, so I thought it’d be good to include that inexperience in life…

I think it’s partially my fault that he ended up being gross *laughs*. I think it was Episode 7? He’s sitting at the bar with Maki-chan, and while she’s looking away, he does that to her cocktail… That was dangerous.

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: The sound?

Soma: They made it really loud.

Soma/Seiichiro: *laughs*

Seiichiro: I’m sure it’s because the other sounds would’ve drowned it out. *laughs*

Soma: During the recording, Murase Ayumu (who plays Maki) was grossed out and laughed. *laughs*

That aside, Seiichiro-kun and I have been cast as friends for a long time now, and while the relationship in this series is certainly unusual, I’ve always liked his acting from the start. How do I put this… he doesn’t bring his desire to the forefront; like, that bundle of desire that makes me try to make my acting entertaining when I’m voicing someone like Kyougoku.

I really like Seiichiro-kun’s ad libs. Rather than making it obvious that he’s doing something funny, he smoothly brings them in without destroying the overall flow of the work. I think he has a great sense for using minor additions to make it more interesting.

During the series, Watson calls Moriarty a “well-loved character,” and when I’m at the recording or watching the finished anime, I really understand what he means. Moriarty feels like he has a normal presence; he doesn’t put on airs or try to show off. He’s aloof, but acts like a 16-year old would. I auditioned for Moriarty too, but there aren’t many people who can express that aura.

Seiichiro: You’re too kind, but that makes me happy to hear.

Soma: I always think his acting is wonderful, and we often sit next to each other at recording sessions, but typically, all we talk about is rap.

All: *laughs*

Soma: Like, “I’ve been a fan of this lately.” The whole time.

Seiichiro: Yes, the whole time.

Soma: Every single time we see each other, we just talk about rap.

Seiichiro: Soma-san does it for work too, and whenever I see it, I think “Wow.”

In my mind, I think it’s the complete opposite of Haruchika. The things that Soma-san thinks about with Kyougoku are things I also did in Haruchika, albeit in a less experienced way. But now, I try to focus on the overall atmosphere with regards to my role as Moriarty.

On the other hand, I also felt the importance and necessity of being more creative when developing a character, without exceeding them, like Soma-san does. So, I thought it was amazing that he can act to that extent, and I was envious of that. The parts where it said “ad lib the rest” represent the expectations the director, Nagasaki-san, and Kishimoto-san have of him, and I’ve learned a lot from watching him.

Q: There are very seasoned voice actors there too, but since you two are close in age, I imagine he looks like a closer goal to reach.

Seiichiro: Yes, just by being in the same recording session, I feel my nervousness fade away. I’m happy to work with him, and I can rely on him.

At the recording for Episode 3, Yamashita-san witnessed the moment Kyougoku’s life changed!

Q: Were there any scenes that left an impression during the recording?

Seiichiro: The guest characters each week are all so unique, and I think Episode 3, when Kyougoku’s life changed, was the moment when Soma-san’s approach changed too.

All: *laughs*

Soma: The others talked about it in the last interview too, but Seki-san was rushing over from somewhere else and joined us for the B-part. When his lines for B-zou were recorded, it obliterated all expectations, so we went back to re-record the A-part…

All: *laughs*

Soma: But when I saw it on TV, it was incredibly convincing. “Break your shell,” really! It really felt like that.

Seiichiro: It’s all thanks to the ad-libbing.

Soma: Partway through, I had no idea what he was saying anymore. “Drinking without water” made me go “What?”

All: *laughs*

Soma: It wasn’t written like that in the script. He’d translated it on the spot, and I laughed out loud.

(They look at the script with ad lib corrections made, provided by the staff)

Soma: Most of his lines were corrected.

Seiichiro: “I tried to join them, but they wanted to drink without outsiders ((same word as ‘water’))” became “Me tried to be together with them, but they were drinking without water.”

All: *laughs*

Soma: Seki-san was amazing.

Seiichiro: It’s good that they didn’t add subtitles either.

Q: I think Saito-san is amazing too though, for handling that on the spot.

Seiichiro: His adaptability was amazing. I think it takes a lot of energy and brain power to go back to the A-part and redo what you already recorded.

Soma: It would’ve been off-putting if Kyougoku suddenly twisted out of shape for just the B-part. Since the B-part was recorded before the new A-part, his personality became even more developed, and his character is different between the two parts now.

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: He became really lively from the start.

Soma: At first in the B-part, I was tentatively acting like a certain rock singer, but the A-part ended up being surprisingly different, so I just rolled with it.

However, Kyougoku doesn’t have that many lines in Episode 1 and 2, and since he suddenly started out that way in Episode 3, I thought the viewers wouldn’t understand either. Sure enough, there were many comments saying “This makes no sense.” But, I think Kabukichou Sherlock is all about that kind of chaos, and it was entertaining.

Was there anything else funny that happened during recording?

Seiichiro: It was always funny. I think the benefit of mystery-solving series is that, when we’re all gathered in the same room discussing what the answer is, it builds our friendship and raises morale in the studio.

Each character had their own episodes, like the Mary/Lucy sisters and Kyougoku, and when it came time for the next person to get their episode, it was fun to focus the attention on them. And then there was the sense of security from rakugo tying everything up at the end. Konishi-san’s rakugo was fun to listen to, and there’d be ad libs from Watson too.

Soma: Those were great. Nakamura-san is really amazing too.

Seiichiro: Yeah. Watson is amazing, and you’ll be seeing more and more of how he’s not just a simple good guy.

Soma: The mood at the recording sessions was so good, that when I saw Konishi-san or Nakamura-san at other jobs, we’d get excited about how fun Sherlock was and wonder what would happen next.

Seiichiro: Chado-san said so too, right?

Soma: Haha! *laughs upon remembering*

Seiichiro: Why’re you laughing?

Soma: No, I’m just really excited to talk about Episode 6 today.

All: *laughs*

Soma: His voice as Potter was exactly the same as his other role in the show, so I thought, “You’re kidding me, right?”

Seiichiro: And his character is bad at rapping.

Soma: His “bad” acting was great.

Seiichiro: It was a perfect fit.

Soma: Anyway, we had a lot of fun with the recording sessions.

When you look carefully at the opening movie, there’s some obvious foreshadowing…

Q: Since Moriarty is Sherlock’s archenemy in the original Sherlock Holmes novels, many viewers were making predictions about him from the very start.

Staff: For example, the butterfly scene at the end of Episode 3.

Soma: When I saw the completed footage, I felt that the foreshadowing was fairly straightforward.

Seiichiro: Same with the OP… that Maki-chan.

Soma: I really laughed at Maki-chan.

Seiichiro: In my head I was like, “There it is!”

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: Moriarty’s smiling a bit too.

Soma: He has a lot of different expressions scattered throughout.

Seiichiro: The Sherlockians are paying a lot of attention to him, and the references to the original work are well-received.

It’s the first time I’ve seen such an elaborate handling of the preexisting Sherlock & Watson lore. It strikes a balance between the mystery-solving, Kabukichou setting, oddball characters, and the gaudiness that’s one step away from being indigestible. There’s rakugo on top of that too, and I think the anime brings everything together well. There are various parts that strike an impact, and it’s really entertaining. There’s a Sherlock TV drama airing right now too, so I guess there’s a boom going on.

Soma: Seriously, the vanity searching is a mess.

Seiichiro: You can’t tell which Sherlock they’re talking about.

All: *laughs*

Q: By the way, what image did you have of the original Sherlock and Watson? What was your first Sherlock work?

Seiichiro: I haven’t properly read the original novels. So even if I encountered them in dramas and whatnot, this series is my first time formally experiencing Sherlock.

Soma-san seems like he would’ve read them.

Soma: I think my very first gateway would’ve been the manga that a popular anime series was based on. The protagonist was a big fan of Sherlock, which caught my attention.

I’ve always liked mystery works, but when I read that in around middle school, I kind of shrugged it off and didn’t read the novels at all.

Last year, I happened to find A Study in Scarlet on Kindle, so I read it… and for lack of better words, Sherlock Holmes is ridiculously OP.

Seiichiro: I see!

Soma: He’s such a genius; it’s insane. He’ll suddenly pose a guess at Watson who just entered the room, saying that there’s “three reasons,” and all of them will be correct.

It’s a great time to read it now, too. Sherlock Holmes is the king of mystery novels, but while people recognize the name, they might find it hard to get into. But it’s actually surprisingly good entertainment, which I suspect is why there’s so many entry points to it now. I haven’t read too much of the original work either, but I’d like to go back and do so.

Q: Kabukichou Sherlock can be enjoyed by both Sherlockians and non-fans alike. But on the other hand, if your impression of Sherlock is too strong, it might be hard to get into it at first.

Seiichiro: Yes, but in a way, I think it’s natural for opinions to be divided.

Soma: I think that’s how it should be for this work. I’d actually be more concerned if it were universally praised.

Seiichiro: It’d be like, “Is this okay? It’s full of dirty jokes, you know?”

Since we’re all creating it with the mindset of making it entertaining in a way that’s never been done before, I think it’s only right for there to be a clear divide in positive and negative reception. That way, instead of being given a suitable rating and getting buried, it manages to leave a mark. When I look at what people are saying about it and see all of the different opinions, that’s what I think.

Soma: I really love 2000s anime, and I get the same kind of feeling from this. The rakugo mystery-solving is a new concept, but it feels similar… I wonder why. Is it the music?

Seiichiro: We talked about that at the recording studio too.

Staff: Could it be the jazz music, or Mrs. Hudson?

Soma: Mrs. Hudson’s enthusiasm in animated form is crazy. I laughed a lot at “Give me Pu!

All: *laughs*

Seiichiro: Her clothes and hairstyle change every episode too.

Soma: Yeah. She actually might seem pretty novel to today’s teenagers, while people who liked the anime I liked as a kid would feel nostalgia.

Yamashita-san and Saito-san would like you to at least watch up to Episode 12 first!

Q: From what I’ve heard so far, there were a lot of ad libs. Saito-san’s ad libs were denoted in advance, but were the others also asked to ad-lib?

Soma: I think it depends on the person, but this time, there were a lot of cases where people chose to add ad libs by themselves. We usually aren’t expected to ad-lib, but I think everyone wanted to leave an impact, especially the guest actors who only had one episode to make their mark. It was crazy… Seki-san went completely off-script.

Seiichiro: Out of the regulars, Aoyama-san who plays Michel took the initiative the most often.

Soma: Yeah! Aoyama-san’s the best.

Seiichiro: He is, and the way Michel says everything he wants without ruining the flow is exceptionally charming. It’s cute.

Soma: Aoyama-san is a true master of his craft, and his acting pushed us to act more freely.

Seiichiro: His grumbling was amazing.

Soma: This series gives us the room to experiment more aggressively, and I don’t mean in the sense of screwing around. It became a battle of ad libs between everyone.

Seiichiro: It gradually started affecting us; for characters like Tora that’d say something stupid and get made fun of, their reactions would change based on spur-of-the-moment judgement, and that was great.

Q: In the previous discussion, Nakamura-san said that all of the characters came into shape as the recordings progressed.

Seiichiro: Yes.

Soma: They did. In this first cour, not every character had their own introductory episode, but by the first half (Episode 6), pretty much all of the Detective’s Row House members are brought into the overarching story. When I watched it myself, I really felt that it was taking shape.

Seiichiro: It might be because we’ve gotten used to Kabukichou Sherlock’s chaos.

Soma: Indeed, at first I was like “What the heck is this?”

Seiichiro: We gave up on scrambling to figure out what it was.

All: *laughs*

Soma: I couldn’t really understand from reading the script, and was left wondering.

Seiichiro: It wasn’t until the second half of the first cour that I started being able to accept that. After taking in all of the bizarre and ridiculous conversations each episode, I’m sure the viewers will also get used to the absurdity, and as part of the production side, I’d like them to keep watching until they get to that point.

Soma: I’m begging you, please watch all the way to Episode 12 first. Really, please do. *earnest voice*

Seiichiro: I felt that Episode 1 laid things out well and Episode 2 wrapped it up cleanly, and you can just continue on from there.

Q: The story begins to take big strides in the second half of the first cour, so it pulls you in.

Seiichiro: Episode 3 establishes that Kyougoku is trying to rise up in the world, and from there, more of the detectives’ motives and circumstances are revealed, so I think the viewers will be able to sympathize with and understand each of the characters.

[Interview] Animate Times – Kimi dake ni Motetainda. – Saito Soma & Uchiyama Koki & Tomizono Rikiya & Umehara Yuuichirou

Original Article: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1573263330
Published: 2019/11/9

Saito Soma (Furuta Tokio in Kimi dake ni Motetainda.)
Uchiyama Koki (Ashida Shigekazu in Kimi dake ni Motetainda.)
Tomizono Rikiya (Tojima Koutarou in Kimi dake ni Motetainda.)
Umehara Yuuichirou (Gotouda Shun in Kimi dake ni Motetainda.)

Matsuoka Yoshitsugu (Sahashi Aki in Kimi dake ni Motetainda.)

Q: What were your impressions of the setting and script?

Soma: When I first heard about it, I thought it was going to be a traditional adolescence story, as seen in theatres. But when I read the script, I found that it was quite ambitious. First off, the “Motemen Koshien” concept was unique, and the story wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows. It depicts the bittersweetness and naivete of the teenage years from various angles.

Ucchi: My first impression was that it must have a nonsensical setting because of the Motemen Koshien. The introductory phase also went by quick, so I wondered if it was going to become a fantastical story. But as the story progressed, they did things like training for the contest and worrying about their social status at school, and the problems they faced were more realistic than at the start. It was a pretty big gap.

“Motemen Koshien” sounds like a weird name, but there are events in real life that assign value to people’s appearances too, so if you substitute one of those in, the story might not actually be that far off.

Rikiya: When I first heard “Motemen Koshien” I thought the name had a lot of impact. But as I read the script, I saw that the contest had various different parts to it, that wouldn’t be so strange to see in reality. In fact, a real-life version would probably go viral, so I got excited reading the script.

Ume-chan: Not all of the information had been released at the time of the audition, so I went in imagining it’d be a bittersweet adolescence story. After getting the actual script and going through the recording, how do I put this… it was the opposite? Well, it wasn’t the opposite, but… *laughs*

All: *laughs*

Ume-chan: Rather than a bittersweet adolescence story, it was more like, you see these guys talking and it makes you laugh at how stupid boys can be. There’s also a confession scene at the end, and I think the film can be enjoyed by various types of people.

Q: What was the audience’s actual reaction when you went to the theatre screening?

Ucchi: From the stage, it looked like most of them were female fans. So, I’m interested in what guys or people from different age groups would think of it.

Soma: It’s still new, and I think the experience will vary depending on the person, so we’ll be seeing more different opinions. I’m excited to see how everyone interprets it.

Q: Now, please introduce your characters and what you thought while voicing them.

Soma: Tokio-kun is seen as a chuunibyou by his classmates, but he’s actually a boy who feels uncomfortable interacting with people. I think his personal “ideal self” is too fleshed out, so he can’t approach it in reality. He has a vast imagination, but he also has the emotional swings of a teenager.

Ucchi: I voiced Asimo, who’s very energetic and in high spirits from the moment he wakes up. He also has a bit of an idiotic side, but he’s a good person, and I got the impression of a youthful guy.

Rikiya: Koutarou is a boy who isn’t popular because he’s too cute, but on the inside he wants to be cooler and manlier. He aspires to be like Shun-san, but Shun-san tells him that it’s okay to be cute, and there’s a scene where he accepts his cuteness and becomes more popular.

Ume-chan: Gotouda Shun is Horiko’s butler, and he keeps himself in check, not showing his emotions as outwardly as the other characters. I think that butler-like restraint is everyone’s first impression of him, but he’s actually the same age as the other four, so he has his own worries that he’s been keeping bottled up.

Q: At the screening address, you talked about whether you resembled your characters.

Soma: Umehara-san was a perfect match.

Ume-chan: Really?

Soma: Your voice was.

Ucchi/Rikiya: Huh? *laughs*

Soma: When I read the script, he was really convincing. I thought, “If Gotouda said this to me I’d probably go through the training too.”

Ucchi: Oh, I see! He really forced them into it at the start. *laughs*

Soma: Yeah, it was kidnapping!

Ucchi: They got thrown into vans that appeared out of nowhere, then taken away and told to enter the Motemen Koshien. *laughs*

Q: They got dragged into it.

Soma: And in Aki and Koutarou’s case, it doesn’t seem like they understood what they were getting into.

Rikiya: Yeah. *laughs*

Ucchi: They were completely brainwashed. *laughs*

Soma: They defected to the enemy side.

Ucchi: Yeah, it was surprising. And it’s the voice that gives him that persuasive power~

Soma: That voice has a magical power~

Soma: I think that everyone focused more on how the characters would react to the information they’re given, rather than whether the characters resembled us or not.

Q: What kinds of things did you pay attention to while acting?

Soma: For Tokio-kun, I started him off in a more cowardly way, but was asked not to use that approach. As I said earlier, he has an ideal that he aspires to be, and he’s pretty stubborn about it. That stubbornness is what prevents him from breaking out of his shell. So instead of expressing cowardliness, I was asked to express that stubbornness of “This is how I want to be.” I hoped that meeting everyone would loosen him up.

Q: At the screening, Uchiyama-san also talked about the direction he received regarding Asimo. What kind of direction was it?

Ucchi: In the plan I had, Asimo was generally energetic all the time, but there’d be times when he was calmer and spoke quietly. But I was told “That’s not right.”

All: *laughs*

Ucchi: He’s always loud and annoying, even if he’s talking to someone right next to him. Basically, he has no sense of distance. Usually, you have to differentiate between people who are close or far away or else they’ll correct you, so I had to deliberately do things that would normally get corrected. I couldn’t get used to it though. *laughs*

All: *laughs*

Ucchi: I thought of him as a character that operates under different rules than normal people.

Q: He doesn’t seem like the type of character you usually voice, right?

Ucchi: That might be true. First of all, I didn’t audition for Asimo to begin with.

Soma: Really?! It must’ve been Tokio or Aki, right?

Ucchi: At any rate, I recall sending in lines for a different character, but was asked to voice Asimo instead.

All: *laughs*

Ucchi: If that means there’s someone out there who wanted to gamble on my unknown potential, then I’m thankful for that.

Soma: It sounds like a challenge.

Ucchi: As for whether it was a hit or a miss, please watch the film and see for yourself. *laughs*

Q: Can you tell us any behind-the-scenes stories from the recording, or what it was like?

Ucchi: There were a lot of people.

Soma/Ume-chan: Yeah~

Ucchi: Since it was a school setting, there are a lot of other student characters, and I vividly remember the studio being full of people.

Soma: About what Uchiyama-san was saying earlier, since he got that direction for Asimo, he gradually shifted into high gear until they were like “All right, that’s it! That part’s all set.” And then he was all ready to keep going as that Asimo… but we were instead told “All right, time for lunch break!” *laughs*

Ucchi: That timing.

Ume-chan: It was right when he’d solidified the role.

Soma: What a shock~

Ucchi: I was grateful that they’d prepared a proper lunch for us, though.

Soma: We usually don’t get those kinds of lunch boxes! *spoken for Rikiya to hear*

Rikiya: Oh, I see.

Ucchi: I was really happy that they’d shown that consideration for us.

Q: Was everything recorded in a single day?

Ucchi: The lines were, yes.

Ume-chan: It took a long time.

Soma: It really took the whole day.

Ucchi: It felt like we were there from morning ’til night.

Q: I heard that this was Tomizono-san’s first recording. Did anything leave an impression on you? Was it your first time standing in front of a mic?

Rikiya: I had lessons to learn how to do it, but this was my first time doing it for a job. Unlike the lessons, there were a lot of people around, so I was really nervous speaking into the mic by myself in front of everyone.

Soma: Tomizono-kun said it was his first time, but his mic work was really good.

Ucchi: Oh, yeah! He got the group technique right.

Soma: That was amazing. At my first recording, I couldn’t get to the mic.

Ucchi: I failed a bunch of times too.

Soma: And I got yelled at.

Ume-chan: Ah~

Soma: They were like, “Get in there even if you have to push someone out of the way!” and I thought, “No way, I can’t do that~!”

Rikiya: It’s because everyone made it easy for me to get in. And Matsuoka-san would gesture to me like “Over here!”

Ucchi: By the way, did you know that there’s a rule where you use the same mics during the recording that you did during the test run?

Rikiya: Ah, yes. I learned that.

Soma: So diligent~

Ucchi: I messed it up all the time, so don’t worry. *laughs*

All: Ahahahahaha *laughs*

Soma: We were a bit lazy about it. *laughs*

Ucchi: But, I think it’s amazing that you’re already able to record in a group like that.

Rikiya: It’s because of the lessons…

Soma: It’s impressive that you were able to execute what you learned at your very first recording.

Ucchi: You must’ve worked hard.

Soma: *peeks at Ume-chan beside him* Huh? Are you alive?

Ume-chan: I’m alive!

All: *laughs*

Ume-chan: I was just thinking about how nostalgic the first recording is. *laughs*

Q: What was the most memorable scene or line to you, Umehara-san?

Ume-chan: The part where everyone’s feelings for Horiko start becoming clear. Gotouda has his circumstances and can’t be honest, and the scene where he has to harshly reject Horiko was memorable for me. When I read the script, it felt like this was one of the most exciting scenes, so I put my all into it.

Q: Gotouda certainly became the key. What were everyone else’s memorable scenes?

Soma: “Donguri Korokoro.”

Ucchi: Ah~ you sang it.

Soma: We recorded several variations of it, although I’m already planning on explaining everything at the second stage talk.

Ucchi: What do you mean? *laughs*

Soma: Tokio-kun says he doesn’t like singing, but the extent of his ability was subject to experimentation from me and the staff. We recorded different versions, ranging from surprisingly decent to completely tone deaf. I think the one they used was the most orthodox take, but I think I did the tone deaf one really well.

Ucchi: I see. *laughs*

Soma: I really think I did the bad one well. I wanted to hear that version too.

Q: I’m sure the fans would want to hear it too.

Soma: Yeah. I also never thought the day would come when everyone would hear me singing that kindergarten song in a movie.

Q: No one would expect to do that. *laughs*

Soma: It felt like being praised for being a good kid and going to kindergarten. *laughs*

Q: *laughs* What about Uchiyama-san and Tomizono-san?

Ucchi: Memorable scenes, huh? Hmm…

Soma: Isn’t it that one?

Ucchi: ?

Soma: “Can y’all be quiet for a second~?!” Even though people are cheering for Asimo-kun, he goes “Shut up!”

Ucchi: That rough treatment, huh?

Soma: It’s like, is it okay to say that?

Ucchi: And then it’s gotta be his shocking talent of leaking milk from his eyes.

Soma: Are there really people who can do that?

Ume-chan: Probably?

Ucchi: That’s Asimo’s selling point. I want to praise the fact that he sealed it away for the contest. That’s real growth right there.

Soma: He put a limiter on himself. *laughs*

Ucchi: What’s important is that he purposefully didn’t show off what he was good at.

Rikiya: For me, I think it’d be the stalker.

Ucchi: Oh yeah, there was that.

Soma: That was bad…

Rikiya: The one who hides in the classroom locker, and when Koutarou gets up from his seat she bursts out and says “I love you!” It was a confession, but it scared me.

Q: That situation was nothing but scary.

Rikiya: Yeah, it’s not something that you really come across.

Q: Speaking of confessions, are there any confession situations or lines that would move your heart? They don’t necessarily have to be confessions of love.

All: Confessions…

Q: It could be something like a confession of gratitude or praise.

Soma: A confession that’d move my heart, huh~?

Ucchi: You know, I don’t like it when my heart races.

All: Huh?

Ucchi: Like when someone texts me “There’s something I want to talk about” first; I hate that.

Soma: Oh~ I think I know what you mean.

Ucchi: It makes me think, “Just say it then!”

Soma: I get you. “Are you busy?” I hate that kind of thing.

Ucchi: Yeah, and “There’s something I want to ask.” Then ask it! It feels like I’m being trapped in my head, and it makes me think “Is it that? Did they find out about that bad thing I did? *laughs*” Just say it without that preface~

Soma: I totally understand. You don’t want them to leave it for the next day.

Ucchi: Exactly. So in that sense, I think I might hate confessions. If someone tells me “I have something to confess tomorrow” I’d be like “Just tell me now.”

Soma: It’d be better to hear it outright.

Ucchi: Yeah. Just write it directly in the message.

Soma: Yeah~

Ucchi: Maybe I have a fear of confessions. They really stress me out. *laughs*

Soma: I know exactly what you mean.

Q: Are you the same way, Saito-san?

Soma: I’m the type that doesn’t want to carry my worries over to the next day. If it’s just a matter of making mental preparations then that’s fine, but I dislike vague situations where I don’t know if it’s going to be a good thing or a bad thing.

As for romantic confessions, when I was in high school, I had a pretty similar mindset to Tokio-kun. I’d fantasize about joining the literature club and having a mysterious senpai ask me, “You’re reading this book too?” So, I also wished I could experience a super cliche situation just once. You know, like on the rooftop, after school, with the sunset!

Ucchi: Ahh, that’s nice~

Q: It’s something everyone aspires for at least once.

Soma: I became a voice actor so that I could do that.

All: *laughs*

Soma: As a voice actor, I can become a high school student as many times as I want *laughs*. Well, I would like to experience a situation that’s too cliche to be likely to happen in real life.

Q: Ahh~. What about you, Tomizono-san?

Rikiya: It’s not a confession, but I find situations like the one at the end of the film where the friends are watching fireworks together to be emotional. I want to experience that.

Q: And share your feelings?

Rikiya: Yeah~ I want to watch fireworks with guy friends in one of those local little-well-known places.

Q: That really is adolescence. What about Umehara-san?

Ume-chan: Hmm… I want to be confessed to.

(Everyone laughs at how he says that with a serious face)

Soma: This is going to be difficult to continue from. *laughs*

Ume-chan: I’m digging my own grave *laughs*. But when I was a student, I was the type to confess myself.

All: Oh~

Ucchi: You would rather love than be loved, huh? *laughs*

Soma: This conversation is tough. *laughs*

Ume-chan: So well, now that I’m at this age, I think it’d be nice to be confessed to.

Q: If someone were to confess to you now, how would you like it to go?

Ume-chan: Hmm, I wonder. Hmm…

Soma: Well, you want to be confessed to directly, right? Like “Umehara-san, I love you!”

Ume-chan: Ahh, I don’t want that.

Soma: What?

Ucchi: Huh?

Ume-chan: I wouldn’t like that.

Soma: What are they supposed to do?!

Ume-chan: I’d be a bit put off if they came at me forcefully…

Ucchi: Then what?

Soma: This guy’s kind of conceited.

Ucchi: What can they do to make Umehara-kun fall?

Ume-chan: I won’t fall~

All: *burst out laughing*

Ucchi: You won’t?! *laughs*

Soma: Well, this conversation’s fallen flat. *laughs*

Ume-chan: I just meant that I’d like to experience being confessed to *laughs*. I usually don’t get to feel that kind of excitement.

Q: Thanks for the entertaining discussion! *laughs* Finally, please give a message for the fans.

Ume-chan: Since it’s an adolescence story, you should first enjoy watching the boys work towards their common goal. You’ve probably experienced the excitement resulting from love consultations among friends, so I hope you’ll recall those bittersweet memories of youth. And of course, I think people who are currently in that springtime of life will enjoy the film too.

Rikiya: This film is only 54 minutes long, so you can watch it whenever you want that heart-racing feeling. I also recommend it to anyone who wants to recall what love was like, regardless of gender.

Ucchi: I think Kimimote was created in an easy-to-watch way. Also, the main cast is made up of different types of characters, so if you’ve already watched the film once, I recommend going to the theatre again to watch it from a different character’s perspective.

Soma: I think this film likely depicts adolescence from a different perspective than what the viewers had in mind beforehand. People will experience it in varying ways, but at the very start of the recording, the director said that “This is a story about clumsy boys forming a team and working together towards a common goal.” I interpret it as their one summer of youth, so I hope you’ll enjoy Kimimote’s youthfulness in your own way.

@SomaStaff 2018/06/23 20:37

Animate Times has posted Part 2 of the commemorative interview with Saito Soma!

*Please read Part 1 first if you haven’t yet.

Check it out☆

@SomaStaff 2018/06/20 18:55

Animate Times has posted their commemorative interview with Saito Soma. Starting with Part 1!
Check it out☆

[Interview] Animate Times – Hand Shakers

Original Article: https://www.animatetimes.com/news/details.php?id=1482383611
Published: 2016/12/23

Saito Soma (Takatsuki Tazuna in Hand Shakers)

Morohoshi Sumire (Akutagawa Koyori in Hand Shakers)

※This interview was conducted after the Advance Screening event but not published until after the rest of the road show.

Prioritizing life-sized boyishness

Q: First, can you tell us about the character you voiced, Takatsuki Tazuna?

Soma: Tazuna-kun looks like a cute kid on the outside, but on the inside he has a manly side to his personality. He doesn’t just cutely go with the flow; he has a strong conviction and a good protagonist aura. But in addition to that, he likes tinkering with machinery and gets lost in his own world when he touches a machine, which is cute. He might be similar to boys who like plastic models… that’s what enthusiastic boys are like *laughs*. When I was a kid, I was obsessed with making dirt balls, so voicing him feels nostalgic. *laughs*

Q: Is there anything you have to be careful about when voicing him?

Soma: He doesn’t try to show off too much. As a character, he has a cool side, but he’s not trying to be cool when he does those things; he’s simply tackling the events he faces in the way that’s natural for him. In order to bring out the life-sized boy named Takatsuki Tazuna, I prioritize his own nature and take care not to insert my own “hero” image.

Q: What’s your impression of Tazuna’s partner, Koyori?

Soma: Tazuna-kun has a younger sister. You’ll find out when you watch Episode 1 in January, but something happened with that sister in the past. It’s hinted that Koyori-chan resembles that sister, so Tazuna-kun thinks of her as someone special, not just an ordinary partner. They also have that unique circumstance where they have to keep holding hands. I think that the relationship between Tazuna-kun and Koyori-chan will become the essence of this series, so I hope you’ll pay attention to how things progress for them!

Q: If you were a teenager and fell into the same situation where you have to keep holding a girl’s hand, what would you do?

Soma: Let’s see… There’s a scene where Tazuna-kun and Koyori-chan go into the bath together, and I’m impressed he was able to go in *laughs*. It would’ve been absolutely impossible for me as a teenager *laughs*. I also don’t think I’d be able to keep holding hands like that in front of my younger sisters *laughs*. It would’ve been too embarrassing… But Tazuna-kun’s lucky that it’s Koyori-chan and not Makihara-sensei or someone *laughs*. When I think about what would happen if he had to keep holding hands with Makihara-sensei…

Q: That’s a scary thought… Now then, Episodes 1 to 4 have already been shown at the special pre-screenings. What are the highlights of Tazuna and Koyori’s interactions in the first four episodes?

Soma: Koyori-chan is a tough role to play… She can’t speak. But her voice actor, Morohoshi Sumire-san, makes incredible use of varied breathing to act her out. When Koyori-chan’s bond with Tazuna-kun grows, she experiences changes, and Morohoshi-san’s breathing changes as well. Morohoshi-san is amazing for being able to depict her that cutely with only breathing! Episode 4 is a great example, so please watch it. *laughs*

Q: What was the most memorable scene for you in Episode 1?

Soma: For the Episode 1 recording, the visuals were mostly complete, and they were really striking. The background art of Osaka where the series takes place and the individual movements of the gears during the battle scene made me impressed by how high quality the visuals were from the very beginning. Aside from the battle scene, I was also amazed by the stylish BGM. Also, this is a fine detail, but the background characters also had their own lines, and you can hear what they’re talking about if you listen closely. I think it’s fun, so please try it. You can feel how thorough all of the staff are in fleshing out this world.

Q: Nowadays, it’s rare for the animation to be complete at the time of recording. Does that make it easier to act?

Soma: Detailed visuals give you more information to work with in addition to what’s in the script, so in that sense, it’s easier.

Q: As mentioned earlier, this series takes place in Osaka. How has your experience in Osaka been?

Soma: I’ve been to Osaka before, but this is my second time coming here for an event. I haven’t been able to do much sightseeing, so I’d like to try doing the typical stuff. Going to restaurants with delicious skewers, eating snacks like takoyaki, and so on. I spotted Kani Douraku (a seafood restaurant chain) while I was commuting, but I didn’t get off at that stop, so *laughs*. Hand Shakers is going to start airing soon, so I hope I’ll have an opportunity to take my time exploring Osaka!

Q: Lastly, please give a message for the fans who are looking forward to the series.

Soma: A few PVs have been released and the characters have been revealed, so I think everyone has high expectations now. It’s an original work with an extremely intricate, unpredictable plot, so I hope you’ll look forward to it. I also hope you’ll be excited to see what adventures and developments await Tazuna-kun and Koyori-chan in their boy-meets-girl story. The beautiful visuals, intense battle scenes, and stylish music will surely make it a joy to watch every week, so please look forward to it! Thank you!