Posted on 4 April 2008 with categories: Ghost Hound


It’s strange. This episode was far from perfect. Like expected after the previous episode, a lot of things indeed had to be crammed in one episode. We still don’t know where Masayuki’s mother went (either that, or it was mentioned somewhere in a previous episode and I didn’t pick it up), and just happily reappeared again at the end of this episode. Makoto’s mother also didn’t show up at all, and this episode yet introduced all kinds of new concepts. Compared to the extremely solid series, this episode wasn’t careful in its building up at all. So why did I like this episode so much?

I think that there are a couple of different endings a series can choose. Endings often used in comedies and light-hearted series are the “life goes on”-ending, the “there is no ending”. There’s also the “aftermath ending”, where nothing exciting happens and instead the series closes off with a quiet episode. Then there are the series who want to end with a bang, and they can usually be divided into three categories.

In the least exciting of the three, the final episode just takes the end of the semi-final episode and wraps up all the threads that were still left hanging from it. Most of the series from the past fall and winter-season belong in this category, and while it’s nice and all, I don’t really see such an ending as anything special. Shion no Ou is one of the few series who actually made such an ending really work, but that series was awesome to begin with.

In the second category, the creators basically solve all of the problems in the semi-final episode, apart from one major thing. Think of it as, the evil emperor’s plans have all been destroyed, and now all that’s left is to defeat the evil emperor himself. These endings are usually very solid ones, take Clannad’s ending, or one of my favourites: Bokura no. These endings, however, also have a tendency to get quite boring if you’re not into the series.

And then the third, which is my personal favourite but also an incredibly double-edged sword: introduce new things in the final episode. And this is exactly where Ghost Hound’s ending belongs. There were only four series for the past season who did this, I think: Mokke, Ghost Hound, Hakaba Kitarou and Wellber no Monogatari. While Wellber’s ending was a string of bad ideas, the other three contained some of my favourite endings of the past season, simply because you really won’t know what to expect. A lot of my favourite endings are also of this type (Ooedo Rocket, The Third, Night Head Genesis, Noein), and now I finally see the resemblances.

But yeah, endings like these can also go horribly wrong, simply because there’s so much that happens in just one episode. Ghost Hound barely avoided this, and thankfully it more than made up for this by resolving more than I thought it would. Hirata gets a very nice closure, and in the end, it didn’t leave a bad taste behind.

Strangely enough, my favourite character in this episode ended up Michio. He was really fun to watch as he tried to use the ghosts of the deceased bioids to get rid of the strange typhoon. The old guy in the woods got a very interesting role as observer, along with a bunch of psychics who were alarmed by Noriko’s actions. And of course Tarou looked awesome in his priestess-outfit.

And really, what was up with that sudden landslide that destroyed the Oogami house? I guess that the spirits must have been pretty angry at Noriko. ^_^;;

The thing about this episode was also that it lets the viewer figure out what happened, and gets away with it pretty well. Either that or I didn’t pay attention during the previous episode in which everything about that typhoon got explained. Makoto suddenly summoned his ghost hound in front of a bunch of goons, at first sight this may have come from nowhere, but I guess that with the typhoon, certain spirits that would have been invisible otherwise appeared for everyone to see.

The same goes for that green-haired guy. I’m still surprised that he featured such little screen time. He was just there, never said anything, stole the completed bioid and threw it in the lake. After that, he’s gone! With no traces left behind. Did that guy work for Noriko as well, or did he have his own plans in the end?

And in the end, Tarou has managed to figure out what happened to his sister’s spirit. Miyako wasn’t the reincarnation of her at all, it indeed seems that the two just looked alike. Instead, she has been inside Tarou all this time. This episode also ended on an interesting note, with a picture being taken, just like what happened with Makoto’s parents.

17 Responses

  1. nancy says:

    ok, I didn’t want to read any spoilers…but I couldn’t resist ¬¬

  2. asdf says:

    masayuki’s mom was at the oogami house in the cult thing right? i’m pretty sure i saw here there the same ep or the next when she disappeared, and a couple times since…

    also makoto’s ghosthound coming out was pretty nice

  3. c-chan says:

    yeah I agree with comment 2, I see her in Oogami house.

  4. melon says:

    uhm.
    what exactly did taro’s sister say to him, before they got kidnapped?
    taro was always wondering what his sister said, but could not remember.
    i did not catch this…

  5. Bellablack says:

    This episode was so different from the rest of the series! When the previous ones focused on the psychological aspect and thus seemed quite “realistic”, the last one was full of “clichés” (flying monks, Tarou saving Miyako, the hole story about saying her name…). But still: it was incredibly enjoyable!! I laughed so much :) Ghost Hound was definitely a “must see”

  6. henry says:

    where can i watch episode 22

  7. wtf says:

    That ending scene with everyone “just happening” to come together smiling, laughing, and singing kumbaya made me puke. This episode was by far the worst. everything is wrapped up in a nice little package with a bow on top. The biooids with little to no character details are suddenly the allies of mankind and stop the dragon? The guy who was having an affair on his wife (in a weird way) is suddenly back together and everyone is happy, with the son not minding the betrayal in trust… The priest gets her just desserts when a mudslide destroys her temple, with the yakuza guys also happening to be right by her. Pure BS ending which leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

  8. BlueYoshi says:

    A very interesting ending. Definitely not like the other episodes, but I still enjoyed it very much.

  9. dm says:

    The landslide was preceded by an earthquake. Earthquakes are caused by the (a) subterranean Dragon God stirring around. The Dragon God really did come down — right on top of the Oogami temple.

    I’m not as wild about this episode as you are. In a way, I’m just glad that Ghost Hound is over, and over in a way that at least answers questions. I’m not as harsh as wtf in my assessment, but I think all his criticisms apply. For that matter, Noriko the cult leader is still around. The Yakuza/political forces at work to exploit the Oogami cult still exist. I found myself wondering if tying the two group photos together wasn’t a way of suggesting that the problems would be back, perhaps to plague the next generation.

    Not everyone could see the spirits. Only one of the Yakuza seemed to be able to see Oogami’s ghost hound. Not all the people in the crowd outside the Oogami temple could see the spirit “dragon”.

    @wtf: the bionoid spirits weren’t saving people from anything — they were tangling/combining with the mob of natural spirits. That mob of spirits was just a distraction that Michio and Masayuki used to buy Tarou some time on entering the Oogami temple.

    I have a question: when she first appears on screen in this episode, Dr. Otori says something about “fixing the bamboo”. What was she talking about?

  10. GWZ says:

    That was a tough cookie. A bit too sweet an full of weird nuts, but still I enjoyed it thoroughly.

    About the old man in the woods. Always thought he looked a little bit too much like a Tengu. I think al of the “priests” actually were the spiritual gods of old, trying to welcome an newborn ally.

    Easily the best series in a long while. Wouldn’t mind a special episode or two.

  11. iron2000 says:

    Late to finish this nice series.

    In the end what I think caused everything in the show is “man playing god”.

    The creation of the biooids disturbed the unseen order/balance of the area and that affects the environment and the people.

    Somewhere in the series I think someone say theres too many “gods” here maybe the biooids (artifical life) attracted more spirits (natural death) to try keep the balance. Then in the end they cancel/nutralise each other.

    The landslide, to Noriko she thinks that is Ogami-sama wrath. Real spirits or a landslide caused by the typhoon weather and loose soil?

    Tarou went through all the mystical/sci-fi stuff wanting to meet his sister but in the end realize that she lives inside his memories.

    The monks, priests and wanderer have to leave their bodies in order to “guide” the spirits.

    Science upsets the supernatural.

    Some thoughts:
    - Who is that green being in the synapse world? Kei? Tarou’s mom? Miyako? Tarou did confirm that its not his sister.
    - The green-haired guy. His main screentime is writing that hopeless being text. To me he would be the main culprit for the whole series as he reprogrammed the biooids to reproduce thus creating life and upsetting the balance.

  12. Dorian says:

    *warning wall of text*

    I believe (but I’m not sure) Tarou said that his sister was inside him. While not explicitly saying “Hey dudes, I figured it out! That green dude in my brain is my sister!”, I think we’re left to assume that that’s how it is.

    My feeling about the anime as a whole? Meh… I thought it had a great start. The lapsing of psychology and the paranormal would have proven really great. It’s obvious that the psychological aspects were well researched. Apart from that, though, the anime seemed to become scattered near the middle, and the connection points pretty weakly developed. Also midway through I felt like the show was just tossing in more mysteries and not doing enough to properly lead us to the answer. Sure, it’s fine to discover the answer at the very end, but I just didn’t get enough lead-up.

    Some resolutions were anticlimatic. I wanted to find out what the whole kidnapping business was all about, but was disappointed that Tarou and sis were just substitutes. Besides that character development as a whole was present but poorly executed in some cases. For example, Tarou went from telling Masayuki off in one episode, to going to his room having a blast with his virtual reality visor. Masayuki cleared his fear of heights way too abruptly. And what on earth was up with his mother’s sudden cure for her Tetris addiction?

    Other things irked me and made me really disappointed and frustrated with the writing.

    -Why would Makoto bring a knife if he wanted to ask the truth from his mother? We know he’s badass with the “I don’t mind killing” thing, but that seemed unnecessary.
    -What was the motive for Reika’s coworker to modify the biooids? In fact, IIRC, we only hear his name one or two times, so we don’t know anything about him.
    -What did Tarou’s sister say when she met him in front of the school gate? Likewaise, what did Reika say to Masayuki in the car?
    -What was it about the village that made people be able to have OBEs?
    -Why did Dr. Hirata tell Tarou about his patient confidentiality, then start to blab everything to Miyako’s dad?
    -Tarou’s spazzing when talking to Miyako near the end seemed overdone and unbelievable (in a bad way). I thought he’d go into convulsions. Also his inability to say her name was inconsistent.

    I guess I was expecting something on the level of Higurashi no naku koro ni. While it suffered from a similar problem of not doing enough leading in the beginning (as far as explaining why we had different arcs), there were more “Oh, so that’s it!” moments for me. And the depiction of the plan of what they were going to do with the village was much more chilling.

    Maybe I just had really high hopes in the beginning, though.

    • Spike says:

      Completely agree with Dorian. His criticism is spot-on. Yet some of the flaws I didn’t mind, and as a whole I really enjoyed this series. But the last two episodes, or rather, the last episode was absolutely horrible. It was like it was written by a completely different person.

  13. the op of kurozuka is weird says:

    I TOTALLY disagree with the person above especially when he complained about the mysteries being revealed at the end. . .especially about the kidnappings, that was answer in eps 15-16, first with the detective talking to his boss about the organ donor black market kidnappings (with the rash of sudden kidnappings across japan) and finally with the letter to angry kid (forgot his name)

    I understand that the blogger watched this unsubbed and with a poor grasp of japanese so i can understand where he couldnt see somethings but for those who watched the subbed version, if you just payed attention to what you were reading/watching, it wasnt very hard to figure out what was going on. . .

    They really presented and answered the questions nicely even about the green haired guy. . .

    you guys just need to pay attention, geez.

  14. I really enjoyed the series. Nice one!

  15. i want more says:

    i love the final ep yeah it had many question that i think they let go to ur imagination personally i think they should make a move like one or two years have ast then the questions to that last episode would be answered im not sure what the movie would be about but im sure it would be sometbhing good i think that thy should of continued the series at first i just thought netflix (thats how i watched it) just didnt have season 3 out cause i was payin attention the whole time and got how everything came together in the end but the unanswerd questions ae killing me i just like to know how everyone ends up or if the spirts are still causing trouble u know stuff like that but i guess my questions will be never answered

  16. vengeance says:

    im on ep 8 but i was kinda getting bord of the series so i wanted to know the ending inorder to see if the rest is worth watching … reading the ending it dose seem abit more intresting with people dispareing but i feel like this series may not have been as good as i expected

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  • Emma
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 09:04 AM)
    *typoed an M instead of a , =<
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 09:03 AM)
    *isn’t felt as much.
    I actually that while he drew the monsters and robots pretty well and was as always dependable drawing the scenery his modern art actually loses alot of his older style actually benifitted from.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 09:01 AM)
    Sidonia no kishi volumes 1 through 8: All in all compotent, decent m average enough to stick with and even buy the rest of it. The setting, tech/science is fine, its not trapped by exposition and when the action shows up its enjoyable to look at/read, good designs on the monsters too. However the flow/pace of it is a bit off, it drags, meanders a bit, its too mainstream for that author and favours poorly in comparison to the rest of his work. The athmosphere, roughness, grit isn’t felt.
  • Roger
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:48 AM)
    Seems my Mushi-shi post finally showed up, so I guess ill just abandon that Nickname to avoid the issue.
  • Roger
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:46 AM)
    @psgels I posted as Spike coincidentally my shoutboxes also disappear when using that name
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:41 AM)
    I guess a moderation system wouldn’t necessarily be of the cards, I too tend to find all the bots pretty annoying too.
  • Emma
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:39 AM)
    I have noticed on occassion that the shoutbox window will sometimes “red out” when links are posted and then it won’t go through,this is for short messages mind, not long ones. For example it never lets me link animefans ftw.
  • psgels
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:20 AM)
    The thing is, I do not try to moderate my comments unless things become really bad, but I’m very rigorous on deleting spambots. Seriously, you do not want to know how many spam comments I have to deal with. >.<
  • psgels
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 08:19 AM)
    Roger: strange: I can’t find your comment anywhere. Did you post it as Roger? Did you post a lot of links?
  • yy
    (Thursday, Apr 17. 2014 05:25 AM)
    @Friend, Emma re:young adult movies- Personally, I’m looking forward to the movie adaptation of Patrick Ness’s The Knife of Never Letting Go. The synopsis makes it seem like yet another dystopian flick, but the writing and world-building are provocative and the story itself thrilling. No word on how great/terrible the Hollywood version will be though, lol

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