English: Ghost Hunt
Status: Finished Airing
Aired: Oct 4, 2006 to Mar 28, 2007
Producers: J.C.Staff, TV Tokyo, Avex Entertainment, Marvelous Entertainment, FUNimation EntertainmentL, Delphi Sound
Duration: 25 min. per episode
Rating: PG-13 - Teens 13 or olderL represents licensing company
Score: 8.041 (scored by 46361 users)
1 indicates a weighted score
2 based on the top anime page.
Popular Tagscomedy horror mystery supernatural
Sep 20, 2014
Case in point: after almost a year working for ghost hunter experts, the main protagonist was told they there were two children of the family being investigated were behaving strangely, and when she meets them, they are constantly repeating about they wish how their relatives would die. While it's obvious to the audience they are possessed, the protagonist is completely oblivious to this possibility until the plot conveniently calls for that moment later on for dramatic effect. Better options would have been to make their possessed personalities less black and white or simply not mention these kids beforehand. Throughout the series contain very poorly implemented scenarios of a) main characters become oblivious to obvious clues, b) withholding key information (i.e., the girl has ESP, gets a vision but doesn't tell anyone about it until the 3rd act) c) unconvincing situations forcing characters to become alone or in danger and d) overtly reliant in chibi style comedy to excuse logic gaps.
The culmination of these effects ultimately makes the main protagonist Mai a every unpleasant character. She's supposed to be the everyday girl, but is stupid while the story needs other plot elements to take shape, super-talented and powerful when when the story calls for a solution, overdramatic to force tension between her and her friends, and is somehow excused from her ignorance because she's supposed to be 'just like us'.
But this is somewhat bearable, since the actual cases they are investigating are truly well fascinating. What made them great was that we cared about the people involved in the cases, we were sympathetic to their plight. Unfortunately, the series gradually moved away into 2-dimensional antagonists and threats in order 'power-up' the main characters.
I was interested enough about the case to bypass the faults in order to find out the resolutions. But really, I just wish they were confident enough in their core story to not have to throw in these cliches to appeal to young kids. I wish the main characters were competent, mature, present their relationships with subtlety, so that I don't have scream at my laptop at that the main culprit is the teacher and not the girl while the characters are wasting my time.
Feb 20, 2007
The greatest asset of this series is the characters. Their personalities are rich and engaging, and their memorable interactions with one another is one of the greatest selling points of this series. It is one of the main aspects that makes you want to keep watching episode to episode.
Yes, the storyline is superb, and the arcs are usually kept to 3 to 4 episodes. This keeps the series watchable without frustrating the viewer, waiting for an arc or storyline to end.
This series is not scary at all, but can be quite suspenseful at times. It keeps the "creepiness" to a minimum, but at times, you still find yourself walking around the house to turn on all the lights. It's purpose is not to scare you, but to keep you glued to your screen, which it does beautifully.
For me, the humor in this series is also one of the most enjoyable aspects. There are moments when my family would literally bust out laughing, to the point of cackling. The relationship between Naru-chan and Mai, or Bou-san and Ayako will keep you in stitches.
I cannot recommend this series enough, and I'm attempting to get as many Ghost Hunt converts as I can!
Watch this series!! You will not be disappointed! read more
Oct 20, 2014
Story (3): The premise revolves around a group of paranormal investigators who investigate reports of spiritual activity and as such the series is divided into 7 cases as opposed to having one overarching story. Sounds like it could be interesting however what lets the plot-lines down for pretty much all of these cases are the poorly written mysteries. If you like mystery stories that leave clues for you to pick up and try and piece them together to work out the conclusion then this one is not for you, all the focus goes towards telling you the back story of the ghost which is hardly exciting when you know it's all going to be disregarded as soon as the next mystery rolls along and isn't all that memorable anyway. On top of that every case resolves by the main detective revealing information that was never there for the audience or the other characters for that matter to be able to solve the case before. This essentially gives the rest of the characters no real purpose to the story unless the ghost goes berserk and they need to get blasted by one of the other characters... magic powers.
Yes there are magic powers in this show and it pretty much ruins everything good the show DID have going for it in the first place. In the first case there was a very nice balance of scientific and computer based ghost catching methods in harmony with increments of supernatural abilities coming into play which made it feel like a show such as Most Haunted if there actually were any ghosts to catch. However as the cases go on the scientific methods of catching ghosts gets less and less and the magic powers become more and more relevant until it gets downright ridiculous. By the last case the cast are basically DBZ fighting zombies and there's no sense of mystery and using logic which is what the show set up it would be about originally so it just becomes a train-wreck of shark jumps.
Fans of long running shows will probably not enjoy the structure of the series. The fact each arc is 3-5 episodes long and have no effect on any future events pretty much means your watching an episodic show where the episodes are dragged out ridiculously, so essentially to all non-episodic fans, you will probably find the pacing to be tortuously slow.
The romance between the two main characters is awful, it's all done in this dream sequence where the female protagonist Mai sees her love interest Naru in a different light to what he's like in real life and she starts to fall in love with him through that? Are we're expected to believe that this is enough to build a romance from? No, just no, you need to show characters getting closer through common ground, mutual respect and care for one another, not through contrived dream sequences.
On top of that the series ends openly with no catharsis to the characters or any conclusion to this retarded excuse for a romance, probably to leave the romantic mystery open for a second season which thank god never happened. It would have been much better for it to have been self contained and offering some sort of conclusion but given how little there was building up to anything I guess there's no reason to be terribly disappointed.
Characters (2): The characters don't seem too bad at first but there are major problems. First of all the main character Mai is handled very badly, too idealistic all the time which gets very annoying and essentially sounds like she's preaching morals to the audience. She is also completely insignificant to every mystery except for maybe the last two and the only reason she's involved with the Shibuya Psychic Research Center in the first place is because of an accident that caused her to owe the main detective guy money, so she has no motivation at all besides paying off her debt, it's on the same level as Haruhi from Ouran High School Host Club where she broke the vase except that was satirical, this is meant to be taken seriously! Also what's this, a backdrop attempt where we find out Mai has no parents, oh wait, only mentioned once and never referred to again, doesn't do her character any justice, not important to any event. One of the worst main characters EVER!
The main detective in the show Naru is way too calm no matter how threatening the supernatural situation is, all decision making is too easy for him and there's never any conflict. It doesn't help that Mai's insignificance makes you think he should be the main character since he's the man solving the mysteries, an indication of bad writing but it doesn't matter anyway because his attitude towards everything just leaves him as a one dimensional and boring character except for when that lame dream sequence bullshit happens.
Every other character has their moments of being enjoyable and sometimes funny which is the only reason the character score isn't at rock bottom but they still suffer through having no character development throughout the show. By its conclusion there's no change to them as people as to what you see in episode 1. The only thing that changes is that they get along better with each other as the series goes on but that doesn't make them any more interesting as individuals.
They did attempt to develop the cold harsh guy Lin but it was ridiculous. He explains to Mai the reason he hates her is because of a deep seeded hatred he has towards the Japanese because of the conflict they've had with China and then he gets one friendship speech from Mai and he immediately 180 degrees mood swings to being alight with her, that's not character development, that's forced bullshit writing.
The funny monk character gets revealed to be a rock star on the side at the beginning of one of the episodes (because monk and rock star go hand in hand right?) but then IT'S NEVER REFERRED TO AGAIN! What was the point in revealing that information if it doesn't serve his character any purpose in the story?
Art and Animation (6): Despite being technically better than the story and the characters this is where the mix of horror mystery and shoujo falling flat on its face shows best. You take one look at the way these characters are drawn and try and imagine how you can get any scary looking ghosts or other creatures out of this style? It's impossible, even with a ton of blood over their faces that still doesn't make their Shoujo eyes and generic faces any more threatening on screen. I will admit though that the background art can be very unsettling at times due to the great use of lighting and colour, the case involving the bloody labyrinth in particular was the only case that had me on edge just because of how unpleasant it was to be in that room so kudos to that much at least.
The animation is hit and miss, some scenes had good animation like the shattering glass from the second one and the action scenes were actually very fluid for the most part despite being shark jumping but then there's others where the characters move in key frames and is very choppy. The use of transitions was also very cheap and there's too many scenes where boxes pop up with the characters faces talking as if the animators didn't want to have to draw another angle from whatever the first shot was and keep to the scene. Also what was up with the animation for the opening for the first half of the show? A bunch of balls flying around fading out to a fog effect after a while? Was that the best you could do? Apparently not! In the second half of the show they actually came up with something more creative, nothing special but more interesting than orbs flying around which basically proves that they knew they'd fucked up the previous animation for the opening, which leads us nicely into-
Sound (8): Probably the best aspect of the show, the opening and ending themes are fantastic, had the animation been better to accompany it I would call it one of my favourites. The BGM is also very good albeit not to memorable, there's only a handful of tracks that stand out and the music that is supposed to be scary is just too overblown as if it was trying to compensate for the Shoujo looking ghosts. As you can probably guess, it didn't work.
I have nothing to say about the sound effects, they were fine and did their job well, nothing memorable but far from the worst aspect of the show.
I mostly watch dubbed anime so I can only critique the performances of the English dub and I have to say it was actually very good. The actors and actresses actually represented their characters well and could display emotional range, also during normal talking parts they don't ever sound monotonous. The voice acting unfortunately is not enough to save the terrible writing for these characters but they did their best for the material that was given to them so to dub fans like me, here's another good one! To non-dub fans, here's one that doesn't suck!
Enjoyment (2): This is one of the most boring shows I've watched in my entire life. The plot failed to engage me because of the little focus on what makes a good mystery, the romance was corny, the animation didn't suit what was meant to be the scary moments for the most part and the characters were either annoying or lacked any reason for me to care about them. I enjoyed the music here and there and sometimes it was interesting to look at which again prevents me from putting the score at rock bottom but in terms of script and cast it failed to interest me at all and those are far more important elements.
Overall (3): I know some people like it but honestly Ghost Hunt is a failed experiment, the Shoujo style takes away any potential for the show to be scary and the fact that it has to be a mystery show and a horror show as well as a Shoujo means it can't even take the time to develop a good romance for people who came for that, it fails in both ways. Do yourself a favour and stay away from this shitty anime. Only recommended for people who aren't at all demanding in story and characters, like their romances to be as loose as possible and have no stomach for scary stuff. read more
Jun 8, 2010
Ghost Hunt, in a nutshell, tells the story of our main character Mai and her everyday life in her new job of ghost hunter. The anime is actually couples of short stories that aren’t necessarily attached together or directly follows one after another. Looking at the story arcs, if you forget about the silly and forgettable characters relations and their everyday life, these ghost stories are actually quite interesting in the first half. I find it quite interesting that Ghost Hunt actually bases itself on historic event to make these stories more credible. Even if some of those historic even are fictionally, one can actually draw a parallel between other works of fictions or even popular urban legends. Now, I have to say that the first half of the show is what you would actually expect from a supernatural anime involving ghosts. Poltergeists, unexplainable phenomena and a slow pace story is what Ghost Hunt offered at first. Sadly, after the Christmas Arc, which is the best arc of the series, everything went downhill. Somehow, Ghost Hunt thought it would be better if it went into more of an action anime and overly-cliché melodramatic moments. It doesn`t get any better actually. The more you advance, the less mysterious Ghost Hunt feels and it is right at the end that Ghost Hunt killed it for me. Even though the second half was bad, it does not mean the enjoyment is completely gone and one might actually still enjoy the second half as much. All in all, the story started slightly predictable and became something very predictable.
Ghost Hunt does not offer a memorable cast; in fact it is probably the worst aspect of the show. Don`t get me wrong, the characters aren`t actually bad and they pretty much fit the enjoyment of the show. However, these characters aren`t well written are even less original. How often can you see Shibuya`s personality in anime? Quite a few actually, and this goes to the others as well. Beside the lack of being unique, these characters don`t have a complex personality and are often feels empty. The anime tends to develop characters relation, but in the end goes to nothing more than the starting case. That was a bit irritating for me.
The art is actually very fluid and very good. From old shrines, to an abandoned building and passing by to a mansion, the settings and art reminds the viewer that ghost hunt is or wants to be a supernatural anime. Also, while Ghost Hunt is not scary at all, nor that it is very gory, it can actually be very bloody when the moments arrive (even though it is most of the time cheesy). The character design is quite distinct and well made. There is nothing much more to say about it.
The music of Ghost Hunt is the best aspect of the show. Composed by Toshio Masuda who is popular for having composed the music of Naruto (even though his best work remains with Mushishi), the music is a perfect blend of effectiveness and simplicity that never goes over the top. Ghost Hunt Opening Song is one of the few songs that I wouldn`t mind listening to, probably because it is not another irritating j-pop song. Voice acting is very good. I’m not someone who can critics voice acting very well, but I know when they`re bad.
To conclude, Ghost Hunt is one of those anime that is a nice find and that you actually watch just for the sake of it. I have to say that while being fairly good, Ghost Hunt does not live itself as one of the greatest anime I have seen and is still very far away from very good. I’d recommend this anime for everyone who is looking for a mystery anime that isn’t complex or very dark.
Jul 17, 2013
Mar 19, 2008
The story for Ghost Hunt is a very fun and interesting one. And at least for me, unique. It takes on an unusual way of telling about ghost hunting, giving you a look into the more scientific and realistic ways ghost hunting actually works.(Ar rather would work if it was real)
It is also told well, the episodes, or cases, are all full of twists that keep you guessing and wondering what's going to happen next. And it never fails to give you a complete and satisfying ending. Not to mention that each case is very different from the others, so there is a lot of variety in what happens in the end.
A 10 on story from me.
Some might say the art is rather plain. While I'll not deny this, I must say for me I thought it worked very well with the series. The simpleness of the art in general makes it easy for them to pick something and have it stand out. So it's very effective in a horror story. And I must say, I did very much like the way they did characters. And the shading on the art also caught my attention for being nice and comfortable.
A 9 on art from me.
As a suspense/horror anime sound is extremely important. I cannot stress this point enough. Having the proper sound effects and score can make or break a series like this. And I must say I thought that Ghost Hunt had both an excellent soundtrack(I listen to my copy of it often)and did an excellent job with the sound effects. Both were well chosen and put into use wonderfully.
A 10 on sound/music from me.
I fell in love with almost all the characters in this show for one reason or another. The funny and sweet Bou-san, and proud and somewhat rude Ayako. They all were well used and their was a large variety f personalities in the show.
I will say that I wish they had given some more background on some of the characters. But it could also be said that not giving away to much information could be a good thing. Especially in Naru's case. The fact we have so little information about him makes his character more interesting and mysterious.
(However more information then in the anime is given in the manga)
A 9 on character form me.
I loved this series the first time I watched it. And then I went back and watched it again not to long later, and loved it even more that time. Then a third time I watched and yet again loved it more, to the point of starting the manga. For me, that is the mark of a true masterpiece. Especially considering that this show was a mystery, yet I loved it still more every time I watched it despite knowing the ending. This series is truly the result of genius on the production team's part.
A huge 10 on enjoyment from me.
I highly recommend this series to anyone. Any anime viewer, wither they liked mysteries or horror previously or not. This anime is a must see.
A 10 overall. read more
May 29, 2008
The art work was reasonably good all the character models were well drawn and diverse. However, outside the ghost scenes the scenery was a little bland, nothing remarkable here.
The intro song was what initially grabbed me, it was haunting yet enchanting at the same time, but also made the anime way more appealing then it actually was. As for the BGM... to be honest I can't really recall much, but that goes to show you how much of an impression it made on me... very little.
The characters were actually quite appealing with the exception of the female lead and the male lead's sibling. The rest of the cast had very colorful personalities and made you wish that the female lead would just die and be replaced by one of the other female cast members. The female lead's personality could be characterized as foolish, bland, and naive. The male lead's brother could have just as easily been written out. He served no real purpose and was just there to prevent this series from becoming a harem anime.
I guess the enjoyment factor was there for the first 15 episodes then it became a complete bore. The characters weren't engaging enough, and the plot simply wasn't good enough to support the lack of character development.
Overall I would say this is a C grade anime that just isn’t fascinating enough to keep the viewer enthralled.
Sep 23, 2009
Pretty attractive name for those looking for some horror anime. Well, you might not completely be in the blood/gore/heart attacks section but you'll definitely regret if you choose to leave it.
It is quite a unique anime. The series is not a typical fantasy/thriller horror. It infact, shows 'ghost hunting' by means of technology and modern day equipment and ofcourse, the old purification and chanting ways are included too.
The series does not have a main plot. There are small arcs which usually don't last for more than 3-4 episodes thus not dragging the anime and neither taking away the viewer's attention. Every arc is beautifully executed and more haunting than its predecessor. Ofcourse, most of the time, you'll be hearing the handsome and narcisstic Naru's theories and calculations, but the anime does have its moments. At the begining, you may not be impressed, but then you'll find that you can hardly watch the horror parts with the lights switched off and no one around. I'd started having hallucination when I did that. Every mystery has a back story and side characters and the occasional history of ghost huntings/vampires/curses explained is quite a wonderful addition. Every arc is sure to keep you guessing and hanging at the edge of your seats.
The art was a little problematic. The animation was a little choppy, probably due to budget. But nevertheless, you'll be so thoroughly engrossed in the story that you won't notice it much. The characters are designed well though.
The sounds department takes all the glory for the goosebumps. Those rantings and bashings and screams and wails, the closing doors, the breaking glass, they never failed to give me a cardiac arrest. Excellent job on the sound effects. I'd have given it a 10 had the opening and closing themes been more than just instrumentals but, nevertheless, they suit the mood perfectly.
Characters are another major highlight of the series. There are around 6 main psychics who're on the mystery jobs. Each has their own personality, tastes and fields of profession. The most notable ones being Mai and Naru, you'll love the other characters too. The comical scenes, their interactions with each other and the parts where you go 'wow, they're so cool' are all worth it. Though sometimes you'll wish Mai would just shut up or Naru should stop being an ass. In my opinion, some characters like Lin and Naru as well, should have had a more detailed exploration of their pasts and personalities shown. However, realistic, well designed and extemely likeable characters is a win point for Ghost HUnt.
Every moment is worth it. Every funny scene will not fail to make you laugh out loud. Every horror part will instill you with chills and speed up your heart rate. The chemistry between Naru and Mai will keep you wanting more and more.
An excellent series which I happened to pick randomly and am very glad I did. The ending could have answered a few more questions and relationships could have progressed further, but it's a job well done. Highly recommended if you adore the horror genre as well as some good and serious fun. Just make sure you don't turn off the lights! read more
Oct 30, 2012
The show consists of loosely connected supernatural cases follows Mai Taniyama, a high school girl who works part time for paranormal investigator Kazuya Shibuya, better known as "Naru" (telling you why would ruin some of the fun), and several associates of theirs in the paranormal investigation business. Every story arc starts simply enough: Naru, Mai, and the others have a case brought to them; they begin to investigate and speculate the circumstances of the case. The real fun starts when strange, and often dangerous supernatural occurrences begin to happen. And it is not just because weird things are happening, although that certainly is a big factor. Much of the fun comes from watching the characters try to make sense of what is happening. Each of the characters comes with their own theories steeped in mythology and paranormal studies. This gives the show certain unpredictability, and a quality reminiscent to a who-done-it mystery; only involving supernatural forces rather than people. The person watching is trying just as hard to figure out what is going on as the characters in the show.
Ghost Hunt also has a nice balance of the comical and the macabre. The show's comedy is mostly dependent on character gags: Naru's aloof personality and narcissism are often played for laughs, Mai's crush on him and her somewhat air-headed personality are played for laughs, and all the characters have silly quirks to giggle at. It is a simple but effective approach; executed with spunk, enthusiasm, and some solid comedic timing. The comedy is mostly there to fill up the show's downtime between all the creepy and mysterious stuff, but it is entertaining all on its own. The creepier parts of the show are done just as competently. Wrathful spirits, ominous prophetic dreams, and deadly curses are a plenty; though admittedly they are more spooky than terrifying. However, there are some genuinely air-raising moments especially in the latter episodes. The "Bloodstained Labyrinth" in particular has a horrifying sequence in which it seems a central character is about to be killed, and an equally as scarey sequence in its finale.
The characters are a fun bunch, but kind of lax in their characterization. They all certainly have distinct character traits, but their personalities fall into a similar pattern to many other anime, and don't feel completely developed.Unfortunately, this is especially true for Naru, a character so surrounded by mystery that he should be more interesting than he is. The problem is that he isn't developed to his full potential, you get the feeling that there is a lot under his cold exterior, but you never see as much of it as you want. There is a warmer, friendlier version of him that appears in Mai's prophetic dreams, but this isn't as explored as it needs to be either. Majority of the cast lacks in complexity, falling into archetypes such as the laid-back monk Houshou Takigawa being the big brother figure of the group, and Masako being a love rival to Mai for Naru; though they are all quite likeable. The characters do work quite well as an ensemble connected by their relationships with Mai, who is a deserving lead, being the most developed and likeable of the cast.
Ghost Hunt was produced by J.C. Staff, and is a respectable effort from the studio. Character designs are a bit on the generic side, but that isn't too much of a detriment as they prove to be just fine for the show and stay on model. The background is similarly good, perhaps even better because they often support the show's spooky atmosphere very well. The soundtrack is suitable in both the light comedic moments and the more intriguing scenes as the mystery unfolds. However, it is the most effective during the show's creepy moments, especially the screeching violins that play when things are at their most intense. There isn't really unconventional in the show's technical execution, but its tried-and-true method is done very well.
Ghost Hunt's story arcs connect together sort of like an overarching story, but never get that kind of cohesion. As a result it feels somewhat incomplete, although it ends on a fairly satisfying note. That and the simple characterizations does harm the show a little. However, these flaws are easily overshadowed because that show is just so much spooky fun. The story arcs are generally well constructed, and the show does a remarkable job juggling tonally between creepy and funny. All in all, this is one of the better, and doubtless one of the most fun, supernatural mystery shows out there. read more
Jan 22, 2010
First off the story isn't really that great. At first its actually really good and nothing realy drags on and its not predictable enough to be boring, but the second half of the series is predictable and it moves pretty slowly. Also since the series is short it isn't supposed to have as much character development as something like Naruto but in this case I personally thought it needed more. The art is average, not terrible and not very impressive, same with the characters, you can find them in almost every anime. Another thing that just irked me was the lack of a pairing. Most short series don't have pairings but this one has two people, (the main characters), and its painfully obvious that they should be together, or at least SOMETHING could've happened.
There aren't really many features that put this anime in front of others except for maybe the genre and the episodes individually. In my opinion they did a ery good job with it in the sense that there aren't too many anime series that incorporate ghosts/spirits/exorcisms etc. on a regular basis. The episodes individually, and not as a whole story are actually pretty good. You don't get too bored to keep watching and there's always something funny, mildly dramatic/scary or informative happening. The characters actually talk for a reason in this and they aren't just there to voice their thoughts. As I said before
Apr 23, 2009
What it is on the surface: school kids and random weirdos fighting and hunting ghosts. What it really is: interesting, creepy, charming character driven work that slowly builds up tension to the last few episodes.
Mai is a girl who accidentally breaks the camera equipment of Kazuya--a ghost hunting mystic. Kazuya uses this as an opportunity to hire her as a gopher for his paranormal research agency who consults various mystics and spiritual mediums (from a monk who's hardly ascetic to a priestess who seems a total fraud).
The story takes an interesting revisionist view of the paranormal--attempting to debunk the existence of ghosts by scientific means to the existence real, and scary paranormal occurences (usually inspired by true events in Japanese and European history) which is also where the show gets its mixed spirituality from.
It starts out mundane and harmless enough and keeps raising the stakes as the threat and ghosts become real and honestly the atmosphere and audio actually make the show have a very nervous and scary feel to it--without ever having to rely on gore or violence. There's a good blend of comedy and clashing personalities and Mai and Kazuya are good characters--even if the supporting cast is not that original, although they are all given a chance to shine and a human element in the final few episodes.
A few filler episodes and stumbles here and there take away from a perfect score, but this is still worth watching. read more
Feb 8, 2008
When i started watching this anime, my first impression was "it doesnt look as promising as the title", as i didnt find it scary at all. With that, I was quite tempted to hold it. But anyway, i cont'ed and much thanks to that, the stories behind just grow on me. Though it is abit draggy at the front, but as the anime progresses, each hunt is more dangerous than the others, with increasing suspense and scary factor.Characters wise, it is quite funny to see them attacking each other verbally, and how they bond togther, not forgetting the little romance in the show. =D
A great show for ppl who are in for horror/scary/ghost genre.
PS: try watching it in the middle of the night, with no lights on. I tried it and nearly scared myself to 'death' at some eps. read more
Oct 8, 2014
For the most part, Ghost Hunt looks like it was animated on a bare bones budget. There are static images, key frames, and stiff, jerky movement. This is nothing new from JC Staff, a production company who normally only “makes it rain” on a few select titles, like Index, Railgun and Toradora. Ghost Hunt is not one of these titles, but luckily, where JC Staff normally shines is using the art direction to cover up the blandness of their animation. In Ghost Hunt’s case, this is achieved with clever and well-thought out camera angles, distortions wherever they’re needed, and a series of perfectly timed panning shots. The character designs are also very memorable, despite being a little on the generic side.
Remember, I said “For the most part.” In addition to the cheap looking human side of the coin, you also have the hauntings themselves, most of which will take your breath away with their flawless CG design. Their are moments in this show that look like they could have been taken right out of Mushishi, and that’s one of the many comparisons I don’t make lightly. In a lot of cases, it would bother me when a series was this inconsistent with it’s animation quality, but in Ghost Hunt, it kind of works... Rather than a difference in budget sizes, it seems to represent a difference in plains of reality, and while that may or may not have been intentional, it’s exactly how the difference between the human world and the spiritual world SHOULD feel.
The characters, despite their somewhat bland design, are distinct and very likeable. Mai is a normal girl... And I mean normal by actual human standards, not normal by Nami Hito standards. There’s nothing moe or Mary-Suish about her, and that’s a pretty easy pit to sink into. She’s brave, but also naive and prone to making mistakes. She’s aware of when she’s in danger, but often needs help getting out of it, and never seems to make any head-slappingly stupid decisions. She never makes a habit of denying her feelings, either... Which is another unfortunate pit that a lot of anime heroines inhabit.
Kazuya, on the other hand, can be a bit of a problem sometimes. I won’t say he’s a poorly written character... Not completely, anyway... But his flaws seem to overshadow his more positive attributes. He’s silent, he’s cold, and while he needs help dealing with any situation that’s out of the range of his particular skill set, he’s remarkably competent. On his own, he’s not very interesting, and as such, his likeability stems almost exclusively from his interactions with other characters. His prideful and prickly demeanor are only ever palatable when he’s bouncing off of the more charming and open people he associates with, particularly in his reactions with Mai and the famous medium Masako. I mean, would he be nearly as enjoyable a character if Mai hadn’t decided to start calling him Naru the Narcissist?
Oh, and while we’re at it, I should probably address this... Yes, I took my name from this anime. I was originally calling myself Narcy as a quick nickname, but my friends/video producers said it was too girly, so I decided to adopt the infamous moniker from this anime instead. Moving on.
If you’ve seen this show in English, then you may be asking “Wait, if Kazuya isn’t that great of a character, then why did I love him so much?” The answer is simple; Todd Haberkorn. The dub was produced by Funimation, and the staff somehow made the far-left-field decision to put a grumpy, mono-toned character in the hands of one of the loudest, most over the top performers in their stable. The result is nothing short of pure gold. Todd’s rubber voice is famous for such ridiculous yet still perfectly pegged roles such as Death the Kidd, Italy, Natsu Dragnheel and Sergeant Frog, but he’s also able to go very low and serious with it, as he did with Ling Yao from FMA Brotherhood. But even in THAT performance, he never went AS low and serious as he did in this one. He sounds every bit the socially inept genius with a chip on his shoulder, and he manages to outshine the original seiyuu by adding an air of superiority and some great sarcastic wit without ever breaking character or changing pitch.
Cherami Leigh is also quite a bit better than her seiyuu, thanks to a set of acting chops that have carried her very far in her career since this show. She has complete control over Mai’s voice, and hits every single note... Whether dramatic, comedic, upbeat or downbeat... Perfectly. It’s a very sincere performance, and while it may not have been the one that made her a star, it makes it very clear why she became one. The rest of the main cast is also spot-on, with Travis Willingham as the laid back, reliable Monk, Colleen Clinkenbeard as the hoity toity yet somewhat maternal Ayako, and J Michael Tatum getting surprisingly scarce lines as Naru’s even more silent bodyguard, Lin, yet still knocking each line out of the park. Cherami’s fellow Strike Witches alumnus Jad Saxton joins her here, and once again, they’re rivals for love!
The only real sour note in the dub is Jason Leibricht’s phony sounding australian accent, but give it a few episodes, and you’ll get used to it. Several other well known names are sprinkled around the cast, including recurring roles from Caitlin Glass, Brina Palencia, and Eric Vale. The writing in the dub is very naturalistic and straightforward, which is odd when you consider the fact that the credited writer keeps changing... Sonny Straight’s episodes can sound a little off, but everybody else did a fine job, especially when Luci Christian and Monica Rial are at the helm. The subbed version is great on it’s own, and perfectly listenable, but in my opinion, the dub is still quite a bit better, and has my easy recommendation.
Unfortunately, the writing is a bit of a mixed bag. The characters do gradually develop from a group of bickering strangers into a tightly-knit family by the end of the series, but the only one who gets any good individual development is Mai. The other researchers, representing the spiritual perspectives of three different religions, seem like they’re only present in every single arc so they can pad out the run time and occasionally become useful to the plot... Which, to be fair, every single one of them does, at least at some point or another. But for the most part, it’s really hard to justify their presence beyond their assorted talents. There are a lot of interactions between them that serve to develop their family dynamic, and while most of them are executed nicely, there are a few that do feel forced or out of place, with one example being a highly emotional discussion of Hong Kong history between Mai and Lin.
As far as the development of the two central characters goes, Mai and Naru go through an interesting parallel... Throughout the series, we slowly become exposed to the true nature of each character, as well as to the supernatural powers that each one possesses. This works very well in Mai’s case, because she’s learning everything while we’re learning it... Her new discoveries and developments are shared with us on the same level. But unlike Mai, Naru already knows what he’s capable of, and yet his abilities develop at a slower pace. Yes, there’s an excuse made for it at the end, but even with that given, it still feels like a deus ex machina whenever he pulls a spell or piece of information out of his ass at just the right time.
Yes, there are issues with the writing and character development, and while they’re not serious issues, they are very noticeable. Luckily, there are two specific things this show does so brilliantly that all other transgressions can be all but ignored. The first one, as you may notice early on, is the music. Toshio Masuda’s compositions are by far the best aspect of this series, as he matches the tone of any given situation with not only tense orchestral tunes, with stings and percussions blazing, but with an electronic track that, in it’s creepiest moments, seems to have been heavily inspired by the undisputed king of horror music, the theremin. Toshio’s the same man who composed Mushishi, and to say it shows would be an understatement. I could honestly say that Ghost Hunt wouldn’t be even half as creepy or heartpounding in it’s terror if it wasn’t for his work.
The other saving grace is the pacing of the series, and there are two sides to this. The first is with the individual story arcs, which are built up very well from beginning to end, if not a little repetitive. You’ll start off with a light hearted summary of where the cast is in their development, and it won’t take too long for a new case to be introduced. You’ll get a brief summary of what the case is, but the devil is in the details, which will be revealed piece by piece throughout. The tension builds, as do the stakes, and Masuda’s music keeps perfectly in tune with this, right up until the climactic conclusion... Which fails to be climactic only once or twice due to Naru’s exposition dumps. There’s foreshadowing throughout each arc, and it can take the form of anything... An odd piece of dialogue, a suspicious camera angle, or even a cleverly placed set piece. The astute viewer will have no problem noticing these, and while it does bring an element of predictability to the show, it never gives away more than it wants to.
The other side is with the structure of the series itself, and the order of the story arcs resting within it. Yes, there are a few arcs in the first half that feel tame compared to what comes later, but that’s the beauty of it... Every single arc, with the exception of one filler episode, just gets better and better. They progressively become more creepy, more tense, less predictable, more disturbing, and with ever-increasing stakes, leading up to what most viewers consider the crowning jewel of the series... the penultimate arc, The Bloodstained Labyrinth, which takes a lot of acknowledged inspiration from the real life legends of Vlad Tepesh, Countess Bathory and the Winchester manor. It’s easy to see why this arc is as popular as it is, considering how hardcore and well-established the enemy is, but I’d have to confess a strong preference to the final arc, The Cursed House. The consequences are similar, but the stakes are much higher, and it carries a much heavy lean towards Japanese folklore than it’s predecessor.
Unfortunately, this arc has the bad luck of being the final one, so it carries a substantial amount of the blame for one of Ghost Hunt’s biggest problems, which would be it’s lack of a satisfying conclusion. Or, you know, any kind of conclusion. Several plot threads are just left dangling there, with the relationship between Mai and Naru... as well as the true nature of their respective powers... being no small part of it. It doesn’t necessarily end on a bad note, but it leaves you hungry for a sequel that hasn’t yet been confirmed after seven years of waiting. It’s a ‘read the manga’ type of ending, but since the translated manga’s out of print and I hate streaming them, that’s a problem for me.
Ghost Hunt offers a very unique experience for horror fans... It contains all the thrill and suspense of a normal paranormal investigation show, but since it actually ADMITS that it’s scripted, it’s able to offer solid scares and a solid story without ever feeling like it’s wasting your time. It has several weak points, particularly in it’s writing and character development, but the execution and art direction are strong enough to make up for it many times over. It’s positive aspects far outweigh the negative ones, but for the most part, you can watch this series with your brain on or off and still have a great time with it. I give Ghost Hunt an 8/10, and a strong recommendation to pick it up if you’re looking for an outstanding horror title to entertain you throughout the spookiest time of year. read more
Aug 5, 2014
Story 8/10: I will admit, the story is a little slow in the beginning but it definitely gets better as you go along. It is a really intriguing and different show, kind of like a better version of those ghost hunting shows on TV, hence the name Ghost Hunt. The story is divided into case files with each case file having a total of two to three episodes. So, there isn't really a continuous story-line but as you progress through the series the case files get more intense/suspenseful (***Bloodstained-Labyrinth***).
Art 7/10: I can't really complain about the art, nothing all that odd or bothersome comes to mind right now.
Sound 9/10: The sound for this series is really amazing. The opening and ending song are not what you would expect of an anime; there are no lyrics in either one but the ending song is so beautiful that it really doesn't need any. However, the background music is what really makes this anime great; it provides the perfect atmosphere for a suspenseful/creepy moment and yet is also able to transition into a more peaceful moment.
Character 7/10: I was pleasantly surprised to figure out at the end of the series that I actually never hated a single one of the characters. Liking the characters in a show is pretty important, because even one annoying character could ruin a show for someone. I personally liked everyone in the show, but then again, not a whole lot of time was devoted to getting to know each of the characters. The show mainly focuses on Mai and Kazuya. Oh but the characters do add to the mysteriousness of the show, they each have some special abilities that you get to learn more about as the show goes on which is interesting.
Enjoyment 10/10 : I definitely enjoyed this show, so much so that I was sad to see it end. One night I even watched seven episodes in a row! I really wish there was a second season.
Overall 8/10: I love this show and hope this review encourages more people to watch this. Overall this puts a :) on my face and I hope it does the same for you!
**My personal overall score is a 10 but I just took the average of the other scores*** read more
Jun 8, 2013
This is my second time watching the series. The first was around 5 or 6 years ago and back then, I've already decided that it's ONE OF THE MOST ENTERTAINING ANIME that I've watched in my entire life.
I don't usually watch anime series of supernatural genre (although Supernatural is my favorite US TV show) so I only pick those which are really worth my time. Ghost Hunt along with XXXholic remain to be the shows that can give me GENUINE SCARES all the time. I love to watch these shows at night but THEY ARE TOO DAMN SCARY that I can't help but to minimize my VLC screen so the effect wont be that overwhelming..fufufufu..
I don't like gory/bloody scary shows so the tolerable suspense atmosphere of Ghost Hunt suits my taste best. The show gives you the comfortable feeling you long for when you are trying to relax, and gives you an assurance that there is still hope for the ANIME INDUSTRY. The scare, the thrill, the suspense, the rom-com, the youthful aura and the drama - ingredients for a truly enjoyable show which fortunately GHOST HUNT has.
As per the story, it is very simple. A group of supernatural experts gather around to solve supernatural mysteries. So simple yet the cases were nothing but ordinary! The stories of each mystery were delivered in the best scaaarry way possible. The sound and the music amplified the atmosphere to give you a series of pure scare fun and entertainment.
The characters were ALL likable. Naru-chan and Mai, the two main leads, I remember back then how I got crazy for these characters and until now I still feel the same. Also, Mai is one of my favorite heroines ever!!!Aside from these two, all the characters were superb and well-blended with the story. Even though their personalities and abilities were well presented, they do not outshine the cases they worked on. The stories/cases were after all the heart of the series and fortunately these were executed magnificently.
And what a lame scary show it would be if the sound and music were not that effective. Here at Ghost Hunt, you will not only be rewarded with good stories but with A SUPER GREAT MUSICAL EXPERIENCE too. The OP & ED are cool and the BGMs are simply haunting!
The BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT I can say about this show is that it only lasted for 25 episodes. This number is not enough to know the characters better and to solve the biggest mystery of this anime. Having said this, Ghost Hunt is truly an enjoyable series. SCARY+ ENTERTAINING = PURE FUN. You don't need LOGIC to understand and love this series. It just needs your creative mind for it to be appreciated. Although this is kind of an old series, it will always remain to be one of the MOST UNDERRATED SERIES OF ALL TIME. This is waaay better than new titles these days and I can't find a recent series that is a match with Ghost Hunt (recommendation anyone?). It is just sad that it wasn't that popular enough to gain a second season ( or was this the reason??). But anyway, there's still the manga if you want to continue the series, right?
Overall, this series is SUPER RECOMMENDED, especially to those who are bored and looking for some SCARES and THRILLS. Watch this right now, but I suggest to try it at night for a better viewing experience..tee hee!
From someone who easily gets scared,
^_^ read more
Mar 18, 2012
The series is split into a series of story arcs, or "case files", which makes it interesting in itself. Each of these files is between 1 and 4 episodes long, which alows plenty of time to develop the plot of that story, the charactrers involved and the atmosphere. This means that by the final episode the characters are very well developed, with new aspects of their beings revealed in almost every episode.
I have found both the characters themselves and the stories within the episodes very easy to relate to and believable. We follow Mai on her journey from mere observer to active participant in this strange new world and along the way are introduced to a veriety of colourful personalities that are both engaging and endearing. The fact that each comes from a different walk of life is also a point of interest; we have an Australian Catholic Father who is ony 19, a Shinto Priestess from a wealthy family, a Buddhist monk who gave up his vocation for music, a celebrity medium, an onmyoji, a paranormal researcher and two highschool students, one of whom is a psychic with a broad spectrum of talents. It seems like a recipie for either disaster or humour, and the latter can most certainly be true, but rather than disaster it is nice to see all these different beliefs pull together and work through their differences rather than be at odds with one another as can often be the case.
The stories themselves are likewise as engaging as the characters who act them out. All are typical ghost stories that you might read about, such as the spirits of murder victims returning to haunt the place in which they died, but because almost every "file" takes up multiple episodes the individual stories are allowed time to fully develop. We are given the full story as opposed to an edited version and follow the team from S.P.R. as they investigate each case as though we are also a member of that team.
Given this time to develop, the atmosphere also takes a life of its own, becoming suitably creepy or sad as required. This is helped by the soundtrack, the characters' reactions and the flashbacks we witness as the audience. The stories range from tragic and sad to shocking and sometimes downright horrifying, though there are also one or two more amusing ghostly antics too such as episode 11, a one-episode case file, and you fully empathise with the characters involved. I didn't once feel bored as i have with other series. The animation is also very well done and presented and the English dub (which i watched) doesn't sound as bad as other dubbed series i have also seen; in fact i'd say it's one of the best ones i have watched.
The information within the series itself i have found to be accurate so far as the studies of parapsychology and their terminology, and you feel as though you yourself are a part of the investigations conducted by Shibuya Psychic Research (S.P.R.), the group the series revolves around.
As with anything there is always room for improvement, and with only 25 episodes so far i would very much like to see these developments continue with further case files, but it is a very enjoyable series as it already stands and the feeling of it being unfinished does not spoil it.
All in all this is a terrific series that i would recommend to anybody, particularly if someone has an interest in this sort of genre or in the supernatural at all. read more
Sep 11, 2010
Story: The story is rather simplitic enough, focusing on a group of rather diverse people who hunt ghosts, and the plot of the story is put into mostly arcs which takes 3 to 4 episodes to finish. After each arc, the cases gets more dangerous than the last. The advantage of the tool of using 3 to 4 episode arcs, is that it doesn't become a rather overabundace of monster of the week epiodes. Sure it probably would've been great to see more cases of the SPR, but it probably would've taken out what makes the series so unique, its charactorization, supsense as well as its humor. The biggest drawback this series has against it, is that they hardly go into main characters backstories, and also there isn't really a conclusion. For that, i give the story an 8.
Art: Art is above average, main characters are not so detailed yet very simple designs, however even simple designs can be effective as i can see the shading of these characters making them stand out. I also commemorate the art on the ghost designs especially one of the designs in episode 21 where it gave me very good chills. So i give art a good 9
Sound: Now this is what makes a series or breaks it, if you don't have the right sounds or music for the right scenes or moments, then simply its not good. But this is where this series shines the most and i give it a well deserve 10, as it more than surpasses my expectation of good timing of music, and the right mood of music. This series does a great job executing the suspecful music and the eerie music that makes you more alert. The Opening gives you the sense of what is to come and what to expect and the Ending is also worth a listen due that its rather unusual way to end as series. Listening to the Ending for the first time i thought it didn't fit, but after watching more episodes and learning chemistry of characters and plot development it dawns that it really fits than first thought.
Characters: The characters are rather unique to the show, and the chemistry they have is just so...right. You'll see what I mean when I start doing a listing off their psychological profile heres. First up to bat is Kazuya Shibuya the main male lead, very self confident and a self consious boy who is known by a nickname as Naru, which in short for Narsccistic, which certainly fits his character as time and time again he is proven to be right. We have a rockstar buddish monk, who has a large fanbase of girls. A priest who is Austrailian, and you have a shinto priestess who many people in the group make fun of her for bragging that she can cleans spirits, but fails to do so. Last and certainly not least, a young high school girl who because of circumstances is force to help the team. Bring all these aspects together, you got a very unique humor to pave for some lightheartness. For the originality of the characters i give it a 9
Enjoyment: This series is certainly going to give you the run of your money and is one of the few series that i love to watch again, and again, and again despite knowing what will happen and why. Replay value is priceless, however, i felt some things could've been done better, sorta wish the series had a slight longer run if only to have as I will say again, a slight conclusive ending, however the way it ended isnt bad, leaves it open ended. I award enjoyment with a nine.
Overall: Overall this series is something people should at least watch for four episodes before deciding to quiet it. So when you people decide to watch it, i will dare you to watch it at night with the lights off, and the sound not cranck up all the way but enough so you can hear the slightest whisper, especially from episode 18- 21. Rating for Overall i award a 9
Oct 12, 2009
When I started watching Ghost Hunt, I really didn't know what to expect. Up until then, I hadn't seen a series that could literally "scare" me. Other so-called horror series like Elfen Lied or Hellsing never even made me budge. I'm not saying those aren't good series ( Elfen is one of my favorites), but they didn't really live up to the horror part.
The characters very pretty good. John was really funny at times, Monk was the cool guy, and Mai was kind of annoying; but they did their job at keeping the show really entertaining.
Favorite character is Monk. I remember the lady with the broom-like spiritual incantation-stuff really bored / annoyed me. She was way too cocky, and while her silly prayers never seemed to do anything, she was still acting all high and mighty. I really hate that kind of characters in anime, as they bore me to death. They're more dull and annoying than the I Rate Gamer. Well, maybe not really that annoying, but still...
My only complaint (and a big one) would be that the series ended like utter crap. No real solid ending, just a funny picture of the group waiting for Kazuya to get better.Pretty inconclusive if you'd ask me. I've been waiting for a sequel for years, hoping they'd make the ending clearer with it, but it's not really coming out, is it...
=-= Art =-=
I don't remember much about the art, the drawing style, effects and the likes because I've seen Ghost Hunt more than two years ago. But, seeing how the series is pretty recent, I don't think there are major issues to be addressed here. It wasn't bad and it wasn't outstanding. It just was.
If there were any major flaws in the "art department" I'm sure I would've remembered them. I loved the eerie backgrounds in the episode with the creepy, bloody hallway. That was the one that really scared me.
I also liked it when there was a scary moment, and they'd show up each character's face in picture-in-picture -like squares. That was pretty cool.
But the fact that there are almost no scans of Ghost Hunt on the web doesn't really help either. Sadly, It's one of those series that there are zero to five wallpapers, and one to twenty scans. You can't really find many Ghost Hunt resources and stuff on the internet. :-L
=-= Sound =-=
The intro...one of the best intros I've ever seen. It didn't show any of the characters, as most series do in their openings. The music in it was freaky as sh*t, the weird floating lights, the faceless hooded silhouette that was gradually approaching the screen, with a fiery background and GHOSTS FLOATING EVERYWHERE, THE DARK AND WEIRD RUINS, THE WHITE FLASHES, THE CREVASSE, THE SCARY ORCHESTRA-LIKE MUSIC AND EVERYTHING ! How can it get more awesome and freaky than that? When I was watching the tenth episode or so ( don't really remember that well. it was about halfway in the series anyway), the opening started and, my cousin, was in the same room with me and she said : "what's with the freaky music?".
John's accent owned, by the way. The japanese voicing was generally good, except for Kazuya sounding like a smart a** know-it-all. He was a tad annoying at times; reminded me of Rei from NGE; the difference being that Rei isn't annoying. I can't say anything about the english dub, though; I don't watch any dubbed anime.
Also, just because of the awesome opening, I'm gonna ignore the fact that the ending sucked :d
=-= Overall =-=
It may be because horror series (and generally horror stuff) are my favorites, or because of the simple, to the point name of it, but Ghost Hunt was one of the most enjoyable and appealing series to me.
I watched it on the dvd-player so I there was plenty of space for me to get under the blanket, close my eyes and sing some Mika with my ears plugged when I got scared. Just kidding :)) it wasn't that scary. OR...was it? O.O
I appreciated the fact that there were no "classic-sucky-style ghosts". You know, those white silhouettes that looked like my grandma with a white sheet covering her. They portrayed poltergeists, ghost-dogs, restless spirits, a possessed doll and all that stuff in a way that you could tell was fantasy, but wasn't that far from reality either. Something like those documentaries you see on Discovery about "the other world". And I have to say I enjoy those a lot.
Anyway, great series,great soundtrack, good characters and crappy ending. read more
Feb 4, 2013
Now that we clarified this, I can freely say that Ghost Hunt is your standard shoujo formula, combined with something else for flavour. It has been done many times and it usually creates a far more enjoyable and memorable overall, just because it is not just shoujo. Plain girly romances tend to get boring very fast. And thus, just like Vampire Knight had vampires, Library Wars had libraries and Chihayafuru had Chihara… err, card games I mean, Ghost Hunt uses ghosts to flavour its setting.
The animation is done by J.C. Staff, the studio famous for its low in context and high on shallow fan service shows. Their budgets are usually good but their shows are most of the times softporn garbage nobody even cares to keep around or watch a second time. In this particular case though they had a much different approach. The production values are NOT that eye-catchy and there is some context to pay attention besides oversexualized underage girls. It is a very uncommon work for their standards. The direction is done by Mano Akira, a guy who only did this and the very dull second season of Gunslinger girl. Definitely not a promising name.
So, as you begin to watch, you basically get average to good production values, an unimpressive director, and a girly romance with some ghosts in the background. What do you think will happen? Hmmm…
The overall artwork is nothing impressive and the characters are rather cop-out figures of shoujo clichés. There isn’t much fluent animation but at least there is consistency in the figures and no sudden quality drops or deformities. The saving grace lies in the uses of visual effects, in a way that doesn’t pass as overdone or dull. They are used properly to bring out whatever emotions you are supposed to feel in a situation (fear, anxiety, laughter) and they are doing it right.
The sound part is nothing impressive in terms of voice acting or most cases of BGM. It feels like it’s there for the sake of being there and the actors aren’t doing an exceptional job but I can’t blame them for the roles they were given. What really stands out are the opening and ending themes. They are gorgeous! So dynamic and attractive to the point they make you think you are going to watch an action-horror movie by Tim Barton or something. To be honest, they don’t exactly fit with the show as the plotlines are hardly THAT exciting but whatever, I liked them a lot.
The story is a bit of a let down if you fancy on-going scenarios. It is just stand-alone mini arcs where the teenager heroes seek for the solution to some creepy mystery. Although there is a solid ending to each one of them, the very loose arcing is what makes the whole thing lacking an actual built up towards something specific. Basically, there is no actual progress outside an arc and the final episode is just the ending of another case. Nothing solid to prevent a sequel from popping up.
The characters are ok if you like shoujo casts but definitely don’t stand out in any particular way. You get your standard airhead female and your standard snotty pretty boy allying with a few other rather eccentric people with a speciality in the supernatural and head to solve weird cases. And that is pretty much all you get since aside from their quirky behaviours, they never develop to anything further than they appear to be. This is also the result of the style of narration, as you basically get stand alone arcs and no actual build up towards a goal and to allow some actual change about them. They are fun to see them act alright but nothing past that.
I don’t find much value in this show. Although the shoujo/ghost combo is indeed helping to make it memorable, at the same time there is very little to gain from watching it a second time. You already know the answers to each mystery and the characters don’t develop in any way so you are not motivated to do so.
So, did I enjoy this anime? Yes, but only in very specific areas. I really liked the use of darkness and visual effects, I really liked the opening and ending themes, and the characters were fun to look at on a standard level. But that’s all of it; I wasn’t really amazed about anything in terms of animation, BGM, characters or stories. It is an ok show for anyone who can stand shoujo clichés but hardly amazing or something you will remember in a few years.
And now for some excused scorings.
ART SECTION: 6/10
Analysis: General Artwork 1/2, Character Figures 1/2, Backgrounds 1/2, Animation 1/2, Visual Effects 2/2
SOUND SECTION: 7/10
Analysis: Voice Acting 2/3, Music Themes 3/4, Sound Effects 2/3
STORY SECTION: 4/10
Analysis: Premise 1/2, Pacing 1/2, Complexity 1/2, Plausibility 1/2, Conclusion 0/2
CHARACTER SECTION: 4/10
Analysis: Presence 1/2, Personality 2/2, Backdrop 1/2, Development 0/2, Catharsis 0/2
VALUE SECTION: 2/10
Analysis: Historical Value 0/3, Rewatchability 0/3, Memorability 2/4
ENJOYMENT SECTION: 1/10
Analysis: Art 0/1, Sound 1/2, Story 0/3, Characters 0/4
OVERALL : 4/10 read more
Aug 27, 2012
The characters do seem a bit like the normal stereotypes but yet they do surprise you. You don’t get much from the people early on but as the story keeps going, you learn much more. Mai Taniyama is rather smart, but she has a rather odd personality sometimes. She sometimes gets a bit annoying but always has a good heart. She cares a lot for those that she works with even if she fights with them. Shibuya is a rather interesting character in that he doesn’t normally let people see what he is thinking until the very end. Though he never shows his emotions, he does care for people. John Brown is an interesting priest that is actually rather young. He shows his emotions pretty well but you don’t see much of him in that aspect. Takigawa is the Buddhist monk who is a bit of a smart ass but he does bring up a lot of valuable points. Matsuzaki is the Shinto miko who wasn’t taught in a shrine. Almost all the times she has actually done her things, it seems to not work. Hara is a spirit medium though she never really shows much of anything. All of these characters give very valuable insight on each of the different ways in exercising and figuring out things. It’s also very interesting to see how all of them get along.
One of my favorite characters in the show actually showed up near the end of the show sadly, Osamu Yasuhara. I love his unorthodox sense of humor and he is a great counterpart to Shibuya’s quiet demeanor. He even stands in for Shibuya in at least one case and I can tell there is a love triangle is forming with Mai between the two.
It’s really hard to talk about the show because a lot of things that I say could be considered spoilers. The show has many different arcs that span about 3 or 4 episodes long revolving a case. Now episode 12 and 13 are a very special heartwarming arc so warning, it may make you cry. Other then that, the show is rather gory and can become intensely horrific in both story line and images.
The animation is rather nice, bright when it needs to be and then it turns a bit dark whenever ghosts are around. It’s like the ‘ghosts’ place a filter over the show. Other then that, there isn’t really much difference from all the other animations. It’s pretty good and I didn’t really see anything that really stands out as a mishap in the artwork. I love how the characters clothing does change.
The opening feels like we are going into the twilight zone or Doctor Who of anime, giving me a couple chills up my spine. It doesn’t have the pop voice, only the instrumental and a women going ahhhh every once in a while. That’s what sets it apart from any other anime opening. The ending is also rather different, mostly sweet and sad but again with no voices. The English voices are rather good, setting a nice mood between the characters. Shibuya is knowledgeable and has a rather good mono tone to him. Mai on the other hand has a rather good narrator voice and has a lot of emotion when she speaks. It’s not like the high pitch voices most women get in anime but more of a normal tone.