CLAMP Gakuen Tanteidan, “Clamp School Detective Agency” (CLAMP)
• CLAMP • Tokyo-pop (2003)
• Kadokawa Shoten (Asuka Mystery DX, 1992–1993)
• Shôjo, Comedy
• All Ages
During their dôjinshi days, the women of CLAMP created a fictional kindergarten-through-college school in Tokyo for the gifted and brilliant, where extravagance trumped learning and grown-ups were all but absent. The elementary school division is dominated by three personalities: sixth-grader Nokoru Imonoyama, the class chairman, is heir to billions, has an IQ second to none, and can detect a woman in distress from two kilometers away. Fifth-grader Suoh Takamura is descended from a ninja clan and is a martial arts master. Akira Ijyuin seems like just a sweet-natured kid with a talent for cooking, but he’s secretly the master thief 20 Faces (see Man of Many Faces). Together they are the Clamp School Detectives. Led by Nokoru, their mission is to help all women in need (one of the series’ big jokes is that Nokoru fancies himself a passionate feminist, when really he’s all about chivalry). The cases range from finding the owner of a lost stocking to helping a stuck-up girl find her heart. Mileage will definitely vary with this series—it’s short, cute, and not too demanding. It’s also a good pick for younger readers, with nothing racy and jokes that appeal to all ages. Others will likely be put off by the overly precocious cast and lack of a major story arc. The characters and Clamp School make an appearance in Man of Many Faces, Duklyon: Clamp School Defenders, X/1999, and Tsubasa: Reservoir Chronicle.