Reviews: Ghost Talkers Daydream

Paranoia Fuel in Manga Form

Since the anime only covers the first two chapters (an odd decision, considering the series is 10 volumes long), I'll be reviewing the manga instead.

Right away, we're introduced to our reluctant heroine: Misaki Saiki, a medium who's been cursed with 'the gift'. She's a compelling protagonist, with a backstory that's intricate without being convoluted. She's been able to see spirits of the deceased, since she was a child, which alienated the people around her, and eventually lead to her being sent to live with her grandmother, who was also a medium. Which is where she learned to hone her gift during her formative years. Fast foward to her adulthood, where her gift continues to unnerve the people she knows. The only ones who'll have anything to do with her are clients from her father's agency, or the clientele at the Roppongi S&M Club. So she's justifiably bitter.

For the most part, the series can best be described as The X-Files meets Ghost Whisperer. By which, I mean it's equal parts psychological horror, combined with paranormal investigations. As such, the narrative relies less on gorn and more on unsettling the reader. The horror stems mostly from what you don't see, which the characters also have to concern themselves with.

While Misaki may be a talented medium, she's aware of the dangers involved with accepting any assignment, especially since others more talented than herself have died in her line of work. But vengeful spirits aren't the only threat she has to consider, since the story shows humans can be monsters too. Some try to kill her, others like Detective Gada try to use her to their own ends, and Yuo tries to convince her that they're not so different.

If it weren't for the paycheck, life for Misaki would suck. Mercifully, the series injects humor when things start to get too serious, and Misaki has friends like her coworker, Shizue, to lean on support and she eventually accepts Ai as an understudy.

Overall, it's an engrossing read that's highly recommended for fans of detective drama, and stories dealing with the paranormal.