There’s a perpetual, particular mindset that one must have in order to appreciate and enjoy magic. It’s something innocent. It’s something that makes you appreciate the awe and wonder presented in the moment; a beautiful deception. A part of you will want to know the answer, constantly hunting for the secret. But another part of you doesn’t mind. It’s something that you want to know the answer to, but know you shouldn’t. That’s because you know the answer doesn’t matter. You want to be fooled.
Magic Kaito 1412 is a rather simplistic show, despite magic being its core element. It’s an episodic series and, as such, doesn’t require much of an obligation to follow intently. Like all episodic series, some episodes will also be better than others. However, this layout works impeccably well for this particular show; I couldn’t imagine it being done differently. For the most part, Magic Kaito is broken down into heists that usually span one episode, with the occasional part-two. In each episode Kaito dons the persona of the Kaito Kid, an unconventional, gentlemanly thief, who steals rare jewelry and returns it shortly afterwards. He often performs his heists in a flashy manner, which often becomes something like a free, public magic show. Periodically, characters from Detective Conan make appearances (Shinichi/Conan really being the only relevant figure, of course), which is entertaining in its own right.
The characters look more crisp than the OVA version and the colors are more vibrant. However, it’s hard to say if 1412 is strictly better than the OVA version in terms of art because the OVA had a bit of an old school charm to it. Also some of the CGI looks really out of place in 1412. Due to the episodic nature of the series, many of the characters who appear in Magic Kaito are not recurring. The only characters who appear in every episode are Kaito and Aoko, who have been friends, and neighbors, since childhood. The dynamic between Kaito and Aoko is very light-hearted and exactly what you would expect from close friends. Their relationship, for the most part, seems fun and realistic, yet also quite childish and pure. They tease one another, but also know when to support each other as well. They share quite a few sweet, romantic moments in the series, which was a more refreshing type of intimacy that you rarely see in many shows nowadays. It’s not overbearing, nor is it the main focus, but it offers a warm, cozy feeling nonetheless.
Unfortunately, character development is not a strong point of Magic Kaito. There isn’t much growth or change in any of the characters, so what you see is what you’re going to get from episode one onwards. In addition, many of the characters in the series give off the impression of being fairly dumb, to be quite frank. But, I suppose there’s a certain pitiful charm to their stupidity that slowly becomes endearing. The soundtrack of this show is honestly amazing. All of the opening and ending these can be contenders for the top 5 opening and endings themes. The BGM ranges from some sappy jazz to quick beat rhythm that makes you want to move along with the action.
The idea of having a secret identity is a story-line I enjoy watching and the mission Kaito gives himself at the start of the series provides strong motivation to his actions. Magic Kaito proved to be very entertaining and a good adventure series, and the episodes with Conan are some of the best ones! Seeing the magic tricks explained and seeing mysteries solved kept me interested in watching more. Kid the Phantom Thief is so charismatic that you can’t help but cheer for him! I would definitely recommend this anime to people looking to watch something lighthearted and have some fun.