Friday, August 22, 2014

OBSCURE O.V.A.S, *Phantom Quest Corp.

While it does seem like a pretty shameless ripoff of Ghost Sweeper Mikami, this 4-episode OVA series was produced through Pioneer(and later on Geneon Entertainment)as part of their line of anime being directly released at the same time as they were in Japan. This anime about a team of professional exorcists in modern day Japan at first gained more of a small following in America since it was released before Ghost Sweeper by over a decade, but since then it has been a little overlooked, mostly because it hasn't been licensed rescued by another company. Even though it did manage to get a single issue of what was supposed to be a 4-part comic book mini-series specifically printed for American readers.

The Phantom Quest Corp. consists mostly of the leggy redhead Ayaka Kisaragi who fights monsters with a lipstick/lightsabre(similar to Mikami), and Mamoru, an apparent orphan that lives with her and acts as the company's secretary and bookkeeper. They employ outside help for special cases like a teenage pyrokinetic, an elderly medium, and a spiritual monk. Most of their cases have them working with Kozu, a detective from the government's "X-Files" division. Ayaka takes on possessed doctors, rival companies, and even Dracula himself. Although each case(along with Ayaka's binge drinking and oversleeping)usually cause Phantom Quest Corp. to keep constantly being in the red.

There's been a lot of debate between this Madhouse production and Ghost Sweeper Mikami, although P.Q.C. is a little more sophisticated with better animation, not too mention slightly subtle in its approach to comedy instead of the hammer over your head style of G.S.M.. If it doesn't get picked up by another American licensor anytime soon, you might want to look through some of the used video isles for this one.

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