This episode takes what we thought was going to be a cut-and-dry conclusion and makes it unforgettable, surprising viewers while also playing to their emotions.
We recap the Crunchyroll anime series Bungo Stray Dogs Season 4 Episode 5, “A Perfect Murder and Murderer (Part 2),” which contains spoilers.
Bungo Stray Dogs wasted no time diving headfirst into a new mystery after returning the timeline back to the present Season 4 Episode 4. Never one to stay out of trouble long, Ranpo (Hiroshi Kamiya) has found himself mixed up with yet another Gifted murderer. Whether or not he will get out of this situation unscathed remains to be seen, but knowing Ranpo and the Armed Detective Agency, chances are he’ll be okay. However, when dealing with a Gifted who can clean up any crime scene, it’s best not to make any assumptions.
Bungo Stray Dogs Season 4 Episode 5 recap
As Poe looks for more information that could help Ranpo, a detective relays the details of the author, Yokomizo’s, murder. He was killed at an inn, with his ears severed. However, what is most concerning to the police, is how the murder resembles the one in the manuscript he was writing. As Poe realizes the manuscript they have is a copy because of several smudges on the last page, he receives a call on his cell phone.
After producing another copy of the manuscript’s last page in the car with Mushitaro, Ranpo explains that the paper used in the original and the copy do not match. He deduces that in a rush to photocopy and replace the stolen last page, the culprit must’ve hidden the real manuscript, which Ranpo searched for and found after finding the copied page. It was after finding the hidden manuscript on site that Ranpo realized the Cleaner and murderer were the same person.
After asking Mushitaro his name, Ranpo thanks him for giving him all the information he needs before accusing Mushitaro of the murder. The driver halts the car, immediately pulling a gun on Ranpo. However, as they sit arguing, the criminals realize they are being surrounded. Ranpo then reveals Poe was listening in via his cell phone the entire time. However, when the driver reveals he and Mushitaro have diplomatic immunity, the police have no choice but to let them go.
Transported to another world
Ranpo leaves his cell phone behind to call Mushitaro. The moment the murderer answers, blocks of text begin scrolling across the screen as Ranpo explains that he plans to defeat Mushitaro despite not having any abilities. Just then, Mushitaro is transported to a new setting via the cell phone, likely using Poe’s ability to transport people into his novels.
Mushitaro wakes up in the inn where Yokomizo was murdered with Yokomizo’s hands around his neck. As Yokomizo screams about hating him, Mushitaro realizes this isn’t real. The author quickly disappears as Ranpo suddenly manifests in the doorway. He explains that this is not real, snapping his fingers and showing viewers how Mushitaro strangled Yokomizo.
How was Yokomizo really murdered?
Knowing how Poe’s ability works, Mushitaro threatens to simply confess to the mystery inside this novel world so that he can return to his car in the real world. However, Ranpo says that once he hears him out, Mushitaro will be compelled to turn himself in.
Having already concluded that the author and murderer knew one another, Ranpo notes that the personal grudge motive in the novel’s final chapter does not make sense and is far too scripted. As viewers, we get several flashbacks, showing up that Mushitaro and Yokomizo were friends despite evidence and Mushitaro suggesting he hated Yokomizo. It is clear to Ranpo then that Yokomizo had himself killed.
Wanting to write a mystery that transcended both fiction and reality before cancer overtook him, Yokomizo needed a real murderer with real malicious intent to recreate the killing scene like the one in his novel. Yokomizo asks Mushitaro to be that person for him, to which the other man complies and begins strangling him.
What gave Mushitaro away?
Despite trying to claim that he agreed to kill Yokomizo because he hated him, Ranpo knows that Mushitaro did not hate Yokomizo. It was his haste to copy and replace the last page of the manuscript that gave him away. Ranpo notes that the only reason it needed to be replaced is because of the smudge on the last page that occurred when Mushitaro began crying as he strangled Yokomizo. If anyone had realized the murder was a setup for the novel, it would’ve ruined Yokomizo’s legacy, so Mushitaro tried to replace the final page so his tears could not be analyzed. After hearing the truth, Mushitaro agrees to turn himself in and revokes his ability to hide evidence.
As they watch Mushitaro turn himself in, Officer Minoura reveals to them that new evidence has been found concerning the grenades that were involved in the murder of the young girl Kunikida is accused of. This means he will likely be released from prison. The evidence also seems to reveal that Mushitaro had never killed anyone prior to Yokomizo, and never killed anyone after either.
Bungo Stray Dogs Season 4 Episode 5 Ending Explained
Before he is taken away, Ranpo gives Mushitaro a business card. The number is to an anti-government organization where a Gifted Agent is about to have their cover blown. Ranpo requests Mushitaro use his ability to help them and use it as an opportunity to get a job doing something helpful.
Things seem to be calming down as Mushitaro is driven away in a police car. However, when they’re forced to come to a traffic stop, another officer approaches the car and shoots the one driving. The murderer, who was only disguised as cop, reveals his name to be Nikolai and declares that he is there on “clean up duty” for Fyodor. He goes on to explain he is part of a terrorist organization called Decay of the Angel.
Realizing who he’s with, Mushitaro lunges forward to grab the police radio. He begins yelling Ranpo’s name, warning him not to take the next job the Armed Detective Agency is offered. Before he can finish the entire message, Ranpo hears gunshots on the other end of the radio.
While I initially went into this episode not expecting much beyond wrapping up this murder, I was honestly shocked by how good it turned out to be. I wasn’t expecting the end of the episode to begin taking such emotional turns. By the end of it, you almost feel for Mushitaro and the impossible situations he’s found himself in because of his ability. He definitely could’ve been a useful character if he truly redeemed himself, but he at least gave Ranpo a decent heads-up in the end.
The emotion also helped to make the mystery more dynamic. Had it just been a normal, revenge-based murder, the reveal and end of the episode would not have had the impact they did. It’s easy to forget that Ranpo is constantly caught up in intense murder cases because of how light-hearted and funny the show can be at times. It makes the more serious moments hit a lot harder, especially when you’re not expecting them. If there’s one thing, Bungo Stray Dogs is good at, it’s keeping viewers on their toes.
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