Ghost Hound

Genre: Supernatural mystery
Length: 22
Score: Excellent

Taro has had nightmares, ever since his sister died during a kidnapping 11 years ago. But one day his dreams turn into something different – he learns to project his soul into an unseen world of spirits. He usually goes unseen, flying through the world at will, but one person sees him back – 11-year old Miyako, daughter of a local priest.

The plot of this series is really hard to describe because there’s so much going on. There are three boys who can astrally project; there are strange events related to a nearby research facility; there are ghost sightings around the town; there are unanswered questions about the kidnapping; there’s Taro’s wish to contact his dead sister, and the question of whether Miyako is her reincarnation; and there’s the presence of the abandoned hospital where Taro and his sister were kept. All these threads are somewhat confusing, but do tie together well.

The style is also designed to keep you off kilter, and parts of it will send chills down your spine. It isn’t visually gruesome, but parts of it deal with deep-seated fears. Rather than making it up, the story constantly touches on real aspects of psychology and research into the paranormal. There is a strange contrast between the detailed style of the real world and the way simplified way some spirits are shown, but again this is often tied to fact (such as the way the brain distorts perception of our bodies).

The series is original, perceptive, brave and well-made.