My two pennies.......Kudo Shinchi wrote: ↑May 23rd, 2020, 6:51 amThe Nagano Snowy Mountains Case (1027-1031) feels important. It features what are in my mind the only viable Rum candidates at this stage (Kuroda and Wakita) in close proximity to Bourbon, the only person in the cast who regularly contacts Rum. By having Rei dodge Conan's question about whether or not he had personally met Rum, Gosho shrewdly allows for divergent readings of the case. Without that essential piece of information--would Rei recognize Rum if he met him--we're left uncertain as to how we should interpret Rei's interactions with Wakita and Kuroda.
Rei doesn't appear particularly perturbed by Wakita's presence, yet he goes out of his way to deflect any possible interest Wakita has in Conan (who picks up on this, as he shoots Rei a curious look when he insists to Wakita that Conan has no real deductive skills). In fact, the case's main source of tension comes from Rei's interactions with Wakita, who is portrayed as a potential BO operative skeptical of Rei's loyalty. Thus we get Wakita menacingly talking to Rei about weeding out traitors (in the context of cheating fish vendors, of course). Thematically, the case itself is about traitors, as the culprit believed his victims betrayed their mutual close friend by deliberately losing an important baseball match in return for admission to a prestigious university--by cheating, in other words.
The other major theme in this case is time. The reason the murder victims purposely lost the baseball match wasn't to secure their spots at a university, but to save their friend's baseball career, as he had promised to keep pitching balls to the end despite injuring himself by pitching too many in too short a time. He'd built his reputation on being an abnormally fast pitcher, but it was that same speed that prematurely ended his career. Lots of time-related irony all around. This fixation on time crops up in the very fist pages of the case, when Conan wonders whether PSB agents like Rei have too much free time, and again when Rei describes Rum as exceedingly impatient, presumably because he believes that "time is money." We see Wakita's impatience repeatedly, from opening the door to the church when no one opens it for the visitors to interrupting the panicking suspects when thy don't immediately show Mouri the respect he's due. But interestingly, we also see Kuroda bing impatient as well--when Kansuke doesn't immediately oblige Kuroda's request that he speak to Koumei, Kuroda shouts, "What are you waiting for? Switch me over!" The case ends with Koumi reflecting to himself, "Time is money, as the saying goes..." Did he hear this from anyone recently? Kuroda, perhaps?
a) Kuroda called Kansuke from an unknown number.
b) Kuroda used kansuke as a link when he had the means to contact Komei.
c) Wakita during the whole case never put his hand in his pockets when everyone around him was doing so. He does only once when he is opening the door.