We’ll let the craftier lunatics here work out the precise percentages, but there is definitely a direct relationship between this show’s entertainment level and the amount of screen time Detective Kurosawa gets in a given episode.
Comic relief is a challenging ingredient to garnish properly. I can certainly recall plenty of instances where an overdose has ruined the flavor of the soup (so to speak.) However, a show like this one, with an insistently morose tone, really does benefit from as much humor as it can fit. Contrary to what you'd expect, the jokes actually give the dramatic beats better weight.
Yet, that still isn’t enough. I’m coming back to the same assessment I made on the show when I stopped watching it a year or so ago. That is, DARKER THAN BLACK isn’t necessarily a bad show - - there are a lot of interesting facets to its universe, certainly - - but it’s really missing the (non-mutant) X-factor necessary to get me excited enough to come back and write up each episode. Outside of this column, I might be inclined to watch it all the way through to the end and find out how we get from these head-butting manhunts for Yin to the quadruple-homicide that opened season 2.
Within the column, though? There isn’t enough for me to work with here aside from tee-hee-heeing about seeing the black cat holding on for dear life atop a taxi cab like a 4Chan meme come to life.
I was hoping to eventually collect a deep enough sample of this show to do a feature contrasting it at length with X-MEN, WILD CARDSand other American superhero stories. However, we’re halfway through and, somehow, I’m finding a lot less to discuss than I did for TIGER & BUNNY.
Maybe that has everything to do with how TIGER & BUNNY was a borderline comedy with moments of dramatic relief?
Watch this episode, "A Heart Unswaying on the Waters Surface (Part 1)” below and decide for yourself, then read my comments on the previous episode here.