Tantei Opera Milky Holmes – Episodes 1-2

Alright, time for some goddamn Milky Holmes. I know from a brief prior attempt that this show is a very very stupid comedy, and thus that you all’s attempt to make me analyze it is your attempt at comedy. Or at least your attempt to promote Milky Holmes itself, which is an extremely valid reason to force me to do these things. But after years of suffering through bad anime comedies and months of unpacking very silly Nichijou gags, I am fully prepared for whatever Milky Holmes may throw at me. Your ball, Milky Holmes.


Episode 1

Toys and the Age of the Detective. Establishing itself like a classic magical girls show or whatnot, complete with collectible items to purchase that are just straight-up called “Toys”

And yeah, even this OP is fairly standard, dude with pointy nipples aside. Setting up a pretty conventional children’s show

This is a pretty low-rent OP

The backgrounds are kind of interesting. Very rough and sketchy. Sort of an awkward contrast against the character designs

God, Milky Holmes is such a stupid name for a detective group

So their Toys give each of them some special power

Basically an episode of Sailor Moon with detective theming so far

Tragedy strikes! Their powers have left them!

Establishing continuity with the alarm clock. Stuff still sucks a month later. But at least they have elaborate private rooms?

So I guess Cordelia, the blond one, is the ojou-style character? And then we’ve got the demure purple-haired one, the tomboyish brown-haired one, and the leader

Welp, there they all go in the water

Their school is just entirely dominated by spies. Another riff on Sailor Moon-style stuff, where the transfer student or whoever would inevitably have some dark secret

I like that they have the “reveal” of the groundskeeper being the bad guy, as if it weren’t immediately obvious

Ah good, their teacher is a big fan of the “loud noises and random english words” school of comedy

Those god damn nipples

“Human Observation class,” where people are just stared at

Their nemesis seems disappointed that they’ve turned to crap. Another pretty reliable bit

Their mentor, Kobayashi Opera

Like all long-running magical girls, they were famous for almost catching the villain many times

Ah, the lead’s actually called Sherlock

“Our precious memory” attached to a bomb

I get the feeling this show just isn’t my style of comedy – “idiots behaving terribly and having terrible things happen to them” just doesn’t do it for me. I like my comedy either more kind or more clever

Good faces, though!

“Their careers as detectives are over, huh?” Jeez, it’s a dog-eat-dog world out there in junior detective land

I like the goofy harpsichord music for this challenge

This episode really is dumping on these idiots

Looks like Sherlock actually still has a bit of power

“Everyone don’t fight! Or something…” sums up this show pretty well

Episode 2

The show’s humor is weirdly a bit of a slow burn. It’s got a bunch of broad and obvious gags, like the pratfalls and stuff like that dude’s nipples, but it’s also built on the long-form structural gag of tonally and narratively taking the Milky Holmes’ conflict and feelings seriously even though they’re ridiculous idiots at all times

Cordelia gets a solid minute of somber reflections before the stupid faces take over

What is the point of the Phantom Thieves? It doesn’t seem like they’re trying to get rich

I like their little hideaway nook in the cafeteria

In today’s episode of Milky Holmes, the Milkys want some god damn bread

I didn’t really need to have text saying “in a delusion” next to Cordelia being delusional. This show is certainly not subtle!

Nipples guy’s shtick has worn extremely thin

Meanwhile, the Milkys gather mushrooms beneath their desk. That’s a better, more creative type of gag – letting a silly, exaggerated detail like the mushrooms actually guide their next actions. Playing with the level of reality in this world

“The moment when our hearts become as one!” Yes, please, more of this. Let the show lean on its own dream-logic more, take jokes further steps instead of just ending at loud noise or pratfall. Build narratives out of your jokes, don’t just settle for the low-hanging fruit

They found a cat! Everyone’s happy now

The Phantom Thieves’ nefarious plot to make Milky Holmes feel like shit all the time

Oh god, what is this horrible show going to do to that poor cat

This show doesn’t really have anything going for it but silly faces, but it sure does have silly faces

And Cordelia gets herself locked in the school prison. This is a very well-equipped facility!

Oh shit, Milky Holmes are actually doing some detective work!

“The real criminals were us!”

Are they actually going to solve the crime and learn a valuable lesson? That seems out of character

Oh my god Cordelia is scratching pictures on the walls with her fingernails make it stop

And the Milkys get to keep their shitty cat. All’s well that ends well

And that’s it!

Milky Holmes really doesn’t give me all that much to talk about – its jokes are a fairly even mix of riffs on magical girl genre assumptions and straight-up silly faces/pratfalls. I’m not really a fan of straight parody or the loud noises school of comedy, but I actually did find this show’s stupid cast pretty endearing. I’m still not really sure why Milky Holmes has gotten its cult reputation, but I guess that’s comedy for you. Until next time!

3 thoughts on “Tantei Opera Milky Holmes – Episodes 1-2

  1. Ah, Milky Holmes. IIRC, it takes a few episodes for them to start pulling out the real comedy gems. At least watch episode 3 to get a taste of that.

  2. In response to your Neptunia write-up:

    Yes, it’s pretty bad, but if you want something 100,000 times worse, then I dare you to watch To Love-Ru, let alone To Love-Ru Darkness 2nd Episode 13. Seriously, no hentai would dare to pull off. (The “Good” part comes at around 19:30, and lasts until 20:57. There are millions of other really freaky scenes like this, but this one is the worst offender.)

    I dare you to do a write-up of a single episode of To Love-Ru… you will need a lot of alcohol.

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