Reviewed by: Azure
Released by: Tanoshimi
Publishing Country: Canada
Author: Shiho Inada, Fuyumu Ono
Age Rating: 13+
Page Count: 192
Ghost hunt follows the adventures of SPR a team which investigates and if possible deals with supernatural activity. In this volume the students of Ryokuryou High School have been playing a strange game called Orikiri. Unfortunately it seems the game has been summoning some extremely nasty spirits.
Ghost hunt focuses largely on Mai the newcomer to SPR, she has limited knowledge of the supernatural but is gifted with some physic ability. This means she is able to act as a focus point for the reader since she can perceive the super-natural goings on, and has to rely on the other members of SPR for explanation. SPR is led by a strange man named Naru, he's extremely cold and distant but this extreme self composure means that he tends to have the situation in hand.
The case itself is basic urban myth style horror, stories of children messing about with various games and chants that are said to have supernatural power is widespread across the world, for example I particularly remember the "Bloody Mary" chant going around the playground as a child, and there is also the horror staple the Ouija board. When you live in the world of a supernatural manga this kind of thing is a very bad idea. To give Ghost Hunt credit though the way the case is handled is extremely well thought out, the plot progresses logically; the climax is spot on. Having said that nothing really stands out, Ghost Hunt is a competently produced manga and little more.
Whilst Mai seems to be a little more competent this time around it's a shame that Naru hardly seems to have developed as a character at all. The rest of the SPR members are interesting, but in a way it seems too many have been introduced to soon to get to spend any time with them.
Ghost Hunt is certainly not a bad manga, but it isn't quite there in terms of characterisation. Specialist teams investigating the paranormal are an extremely popular and handy format for these kinds of stories, but as shows like X-Files proved good characters can add a huge amount of interest, at least it stays away from Torchwood style fan service.
Ghost Hunt is enjoyable enough to read but once you've read it once the surprise has been sprung. If you're lucky enough to have a local library which stocks manga check it out in their forbidden-uh manga section. Otherwise if you really want to buy it hold out for a good special offer 3 for 2 at least.