Yuugen Kaisha (or You-Gen-Kai-Sha bka, Phantom Quest Corp.) is a four episode comedy/horror/mystery OVA from Madhouse, which was licensed for release by Geneon in mid 1994. The english dub was released early the following year in two VHS volumes. In December of '98, it was given a re-release on DVD, in Japan, while the english version arrived in November of 2000.The series follows the exploits of Phantom Quest, an organization lead by one AyakaKisaragi. They specialize in tracking down and taking out the supernatural - from ghosts, vampires, and every other manner of evil spirit across Tokyo. Which are often commissioned to them by U Division's Detective Karino, both to lighten his workload and as a personal favor to Ayaka.Rather than an overarching narrative, it's more of a sitcom with each episode being its own self-contained adventure which follows a case-by-case format. Though some of the spooks they meet aren't bad, such as an anemic vampire who runs a tea shop, or a ghost who helps out with his girlfriend's museum exhibit.But the baddies best beware: Phantom Quest is certainly capable and will readily accept any job offer so long as it pays well. In fact, the only opposition that the company faces is the constant onset of debt, thanks to their president.The series has often been compared to Ghost Sweeper Mikami, due to the similarities in its premise and having been released at roughly the same time (for the record, Ghost Sweeper Mikami debuted a year earlier in April of '93). So if you've seen either one and enjoyed it, you may wanna give the other a try.
Beleaguered Assistant: Makoto, who despite being roughly eight years old, handles pretty much everything on the administrative end of the business, along with doing his best to keep Ayaka from drinking and spending herself to death.
Bottle Fairy: Ayaka. Big time. She's known for getting plastered and punching out cab drivers. Or just getting plastered period. The intro even shows Karino carrying her home while she's drunk, and in case file 01, Bosco refused to take her blood, due to the alcohol content!
Breaking and Bloodsucking: Dracula initially preys on Makiko whenever she steps out at night. But, after repeat interference from Ayaka and Bosco, he goes straight to her bedroom. But Karino's timely arrival causes Dracula to flee with Makiko to Tokyo Tower.
Broke Episode: The members of Phantom Quest end up part timing just to get by, during incident file 04, thanks to the Hadja stealing all of their clients.
Charles Atlas Superpower: Rokkon who, in the fourth incident file, leaps from the third floor of the Hadja's temple, while carrying Karino and Nanami and lands, without injury.
Children Raise You: Parodied. Ayaka's sorta responisible, but her recklessness often lands Phantom Quest deep in the red. It doesn't take long to see that it's Mamoru's management skills that keeps the company afloat. Not to mention all the times he has to chastise her for getting drunk, and over sleeping.
Christmas Cake: Ayaka sometimes asks Madam Sumei if there's any hope for her love life only to be told her chances of finding happiness are zero. Doesn't help that she gets called an "old lady" by a cafe full of young teen/twenty-something females either.
In the first Incident File, it first appears that Bosco is stalking Makiko. It's eventually revealed that he was protecting her from another vampire, who had recently reincarnated.
In Incident File 03, Narita keeps his girlfriend safe from Nagasuki's advances, and takes it upon himself to set up the exhibit for her, after Nagasuki pulls the night crew... and does it all from the afterlife!
Distressed Dude: Karino fills this slot during the fourth episode, "Lover Come Back to Me".
Dogged Nice Guy: Karino tries in subtle ways to impress Ayaka and prove she can depend on him, such as incident file 03, where he attempts to tail Nagasuki, thinking Ayaka would be proud of him. Sadly, he blows a tire and gets left by the side of the road. Earlier, he attempts to surprise her with a box of pastries, but drops it on the way. Needless to say, Ayaka was not impressed.
Elevator Snare: Karino manages to keep up with the hospital's elevator by running up the stairs for at least four floors.
Fed to the Ghosts: Mukyo threatens to do this to Karino, after he's caught investigating his scam operation, by dangling him over a pit filled with all the apparitions the Hadja allegedly excorcised.
Fiery Redhead: Ayaka's not-so-bad, most of the time, but she's known for her rash behavior and having a hair trigger temper.
Harem Seeker: Ayaka accuses Bosco of being a lecher when she learns that his tea shop specifically caters to late teen-early 20's female clientele. Which he explains isn't the case at all. The reason he caters to that particular age group is because older women are less likely to be virgins; adding virgins had become harder to find in the modern era.
Heroic BSOD: Nanami has one near the climax of the final case file, when she, Rokkon, and Karino find themselves surrounded and vastly outnumbered by ghosts. She becomes so frightened that her mind goes blank, complete with spiral eyes; making it a rare comedic version of the trope.
I See Dead People: Just about everybody in the series, though it's mainly Phantom Quest. It's all part of the job.
Kick the Dog: Mr. Nagasuki does this repeatedly to Natsuki in his efforts to get her into bed. First by coming onto her, then pulling the night crew from the exhibit when she rejects his advances. He finally threatens to cut off the exhibit's funding unless she "co-operates". Thankfully, she had Phantom Quest to protect her and Narita.
Love Redeems: A flashback reveals that Bosco repeatedly exposed himself to crosses, garlic, high powered UV lamps to build resistance (eventually immunity) to sunlight, and even tried to give up blood which he found he couldn't, so he limits himself to feeding only four times a year, while taking supplement tablets inbetween, all so he could be with Makiko.
The downside, however, is it's caused him to become anemic and lose much of the power he'd have, as a vampire, if he fed regularly. Even so, he's perfectly content that way, so long as he can be with her.
Meaningful Name/Stealth Pun: Both the show's title and the company's name is a play on the words "You-Gen-Kai-Sya" which means "limited liability company"note an obvious nod to Phantom Quest constantly being up to their ears in debt, due to all the damage claims that're filed against them (see: Destructive Savior). However, using different kanji, the word "yugen" means "the occult", which their company specializes in.
Nature Adores a Virgin: Discussed in-series, when Bosco explains to Ayaka that it's become harder for vampires to find virgins in their day and age, given how liberal society had become. The fact that Makiko is not only a virgin, but doesn't drink, doesn't smoke, or do drugs, makes her blood especially pure. Which causes her stick out like a walking neon "drink me" sign and is the reason she was being relentlessly pursued by Dracula.
Not Distracted by the Sexy: Mamoru is completely unfazed by Ayaka's habit of sleeping in the nude, and shows neither interest or embarrassment when he enters her room to wake her up each morning; nor is he bothered by how she shows up for breakfast.
Occult Detective: U Division's Detective Karino, who commisions jobs to Phantom Quest. Ayaka and Madam Sumei count as well.
Paranormal Investigation: It's right there, in the company name and their job description. If it has anything to do with paranormal, or supernatural activity, Phantom Quest and U Division will take the assignment.
Bosco is anemic due to limiting himself to feeding only four times a year and is capable of walking around in broad daylight, though he wear sunglasses to shield his eyes (he switches to a tinted pair of pince nez while he's indoors).
Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Literally. The guy runs a trendy tea shop for attractive teens and 20 somethingsnote which is implied to be how he met Makiko, who's 19. Plus, he's been following Makiko at night to protect her from another vampire who'd recently reincarnated.
So Long, Suckers!: Ayaka does this to Madam Sumei, when it comes time to pay for her services.
Stalker with a Crush: A rare instance where it's justified. Though Bosco is love with Makiko, he wasn't stalking her. It turned out that he was protecting her from Dracula, who had recently reincarnated and was repeatedly victimizing her.
Taking You with Me: Mukyo attempts this, after his defeat, by grabbing Ayaka's leg then pitching himself off the roof with his dying breath. He ends up in a tree. Ayaka, however, ends up in Karino's arms when he breaks her fall by catching her.
Who You Gonna Call?: As previously mentioned, Phantom Quest will take any case involving paranormal activity, or the supernatural (so long as it pays well). Incidentally, the show's intro doubles as their ad!