San Teresa’s Finest
- Episodes: 12
- Genre: Action, Sci-Fi, Police, Magic, Fantasy
- Airing Date: July 9, 2019 - Ongoing
- Studio: Millepensee
Cop Craft Preview (No Spoilers)
If you could combine the detectives from classic detective films and novels, with Beverly Hills Cop, Law & Order, and put it in a world of fantasy, then you get Kei Matoba. Due to his familiarity with those from the other side of the portal, he is forced to partner up with Tilarna, an elite knight from that very world. To make matters worse, he lost his partner in a bust that went south and knowing Tilarna can help, he reluctantly takes her in. Thanks to their partnership, Tilarna and Kei take the buddy cop genre to a whole new ride. For now, we wish to explore some 5 great qualities of Kei Matoba.
Kei Matoba Highlights
1. He Truly Cares
Though he’s not good at properly expressing it, Kei is a guy that truly cares about the people around him. He tries to either put up a tough guy front and pretends to be an introvert, but when things are looking bleak for those around him, he’s willing to help. One basic example is that he’s willing to take care of a stray cat despite being allergic to cats. He just did it because nobody else would. When Tilarna disappears on him, he goes out of his way to help her in any way he can. He’s also there for his informants when they got in trouble. Kei might seem like the kind of guy who would probably stab you in the back with how he expresses his anger, but in reality, he’s the first to have your back when you’re in trouble. Last, his motivation to solve the case of the weaponized fairies was to avenge his former partner’s death.
2. Kei’s a Good Shot
OK, so praising someone for their shooting skills may not be the most politically correct thing to say in context to recent events in the US, but hear us out on this one. When Kei takes out the first villain, it was in the dark and with considerable distance. It takes skill to accurately shoot someone under such conditions. Tilarna suggests that Kei and his firearm have a “magical” connection that allows him to be that good. While he may not be Ryo Saeba good, but when the bad guy needs to be put down, Kei can still get that job done.
3. He’s a Good Detective
Obviously, the guy is a good detective, otherwise he wouldn’t be that appealing as a main character. He’s got the looks, the voice, and the attitude, but ultimately, Kei has the skills. His abilities to investigate are top notch to the point that he was able to discover corruption in his own department! While catching criminals is part of his gig, Kei knows which ones to use as his informants who can provide him valuable information.
4. Kei Knows When to Ask for Help
Yes, he was reluctant to take in Tilarna but when there’s something he can’t do, he’s willing to ask for help, and he’s even willing to ask Tilarna. All detectives need their Watson’s, and Kei has plenty of them beyond Tilarna. When he’s stuck with something, Kei asks one of his co-workers to investigate something for him, or just simply ask their opinion on something. When his car(s) get totaled, he gets the department to get him a new one (thankfully cars from busts, not at the expense of San Teresa’s hardworking tax payers). Though it’s his job to get help when needed, the way Kei expresses it comes from a genuine place and it shows he doesn’t have to do everything himself, or to do everything himself just to prove something. Heck, he’s even willing to ask his ex-girlfriend for help (thankfully, they managed to stay friends). So if you want to know what it’s like to rely on your nakama, look no further than Kei.
5. Kenjiro Tsuda
If anyone made Kei who he is, it’s thanks to the performance of his seiyuu, Kenjiro Tsuda. His deep and nasal voice is an excellent representation of the classic hard boiled detective if he were Japanese. Not only does he capture those qualities, but how Kei is also sarcastic and caring. He knows when to act calm, and he knows when not to be off the rails. Audiences can get a feel that he’s world weary due to the nature of his profession, and through that, you can feel how straightforward he is regardless of his emotional state.
As we said before, Kei is a repackaged version to the classic hard-boiled detective, but to fit within the quirks of Japanese pop culture. He’s an old school trope in a new school world, and that’s what ultimately makes him appealing. Wherever there’s crime, we’re always going to need characters like him. The nature of the crimes are without a doubt beyond this world when you put fairies and elves into the mix. However, with someone like Kei on the case, both worlds can be safe.