A bit of face distortion and I can label Ghost Hunt as the third season of Higurashi, after Manabi Straight.
As expected, Mai is not dead as yet. We also realize a very important clue to who Naru actually is and his purpose to come to Japan. Lin’s purpose with Naru is also addressed (well, hinted) too. There are tons of surprises in this episode and that itself is a major understatement!
Mai woke up screaming in terror until she was slapped by Ayako. As she woke up, she felt total fear as everyone came in to comfort her. Bou-san rushed in and asked her about the dream as Mai re-accounted it. Bou-san apologized for forcing her to remember it. Naru came in to give some red tea to Mai as she calmed down. The next day, Yasuhara proposed that it might be the spirit of Suzuki and the other assistant sending her a message of their impending death. In other words, it was telepathy. John mentioned whether the spirit liked young people, as all the caretakers who came one week ago were safe and were of middle-aged. The two missing people were young.
Naru then asked Ayako how much he could trust her and she replied first in annoyance about the lack of faith but corrected to say that she was confident of repelling spirits. He told Ayako to stay with Masako, John and Bou-san to protect Yasuhara, Mai protected by Lin while Naru has no defense. Lin immediately objected to it and tried to make other arrangements but it was all rejected by Naru as it was too dangerous. Lin continued to lecture Naru, saying how he would answer to the professor if anyone happened to him and told Naru not to make his parents worry. Naru told him that Lin could leave if he was not happy but Lin reminded him that he was here to supervise him, leaving Mai shocked. Yasuhara offered to leave in order to settle the situation.
Lin explained that the blueprint of the room seemed to be centered on a space in the middle of the house. Lin proposed that the rooms and walls were building out of this space, as Naru wondered what this unknown space that they could not reach was. Naru proposed that the space was not a hidden room but in fact a basement in order to hide something from others. Madoka and Yasuhara came over to give information once again through the window. Naru said that it was dangerous but Madoka said the surroundings were places where kids played and there were no missing children. They first informed that there were 12 chimneys when they viewed the house from outside when there were only 11 indoors. They also talked about the owner of the house being weak, having two servants.
The servants often complained that the room was extremely smelly and the name “浦户” (name on the note) was in fact his nickname. Mai was starting to freak out with the information, with Masako stepping in. She simply tapped on the shoulders of Mai, telling the spirit to move along as Mai returned to her senses. It seemed that it was the residue of memories by the maid in the dream. A loud sound emitted that was completely different as the lights went down. When it returned, a lot of words written in blood appeared everywhere and Naru asked Masako whether she was confident about suppressing the spirit in her.
Masako said she did but Mai stopped her, saying that Naru did not understand the feeling of death and that feeling in which you were carried off to die. Naru’s look at her seemed to imply that she said something really awful but Naru asked Lin to do a less reliable method which was to get the spirit out in the open through a ritual. As the ritual started, Suzuki appeared and it seemed that she had not realized that she had died. Naru asked whether the name “浦户” had anything to do with her disappearance as she seemed stressed. Naru asked the last question on where she was when prompted by Lin, as she pointed at the wall.
Bou-san realized that “浦户” (Urado) was in fact Vlad or Dracula. Mai started to freak out with vampires, but Naru told her that there was no living person who would suck blood. His Romanian surname Drăculea (transliterated as “Dracula” in foreign languages of the historical documents where his name is mentioned) is a diminutive derived from his father’s title Dracul and means “Son of the Dragon” but also could mean “demon”. He was an all conquering warlord who was sadistic to impale his victims and enemies onto stakes, leaving them to die. The master of this house, being a well traveled man, would have read the novel before.
The novel Dracula was often related to Countess Erzebet Báthory, who believed that by soaking herself into the virgin blood of women, she would retain her beauty. Urado probably admired those of good health and wanted such sacrifices to extend his life instead. The note that said “everyone who came in died” was perhaps a message for others who were about to come. It also seemed that people from the hospital, people of his clan were not spared for his aim to stay healthy even if it was a futile attempt. It was proposed by Bou-san and Ayako then that the son of the master realized the atrocities of his father and tried to seal the place by making a whole maze around that area. Naru added that the man was probably still somewhere around, trying to grab people to extend his life in the spiritual form.
The next day, they went to check out the blank space in the map where the thickest chimney was, and it seemed that there was a hidden path behind the wall where a dead body of the missing person two months ago was found. A conference was set up, as Naru broke the news to Igarashi as she tried to disbelieve it. However, Naru proved beyond doubt that the body found was behind thick walls and it was nearly impossible for the body to be there. Igarashi tried to ask Davis for help but it seemed that Dr Davis was a fake and he was asked by Minami to help. Eventually, they rushed out. Naru then told everyone to pack up as this place would not be possible to exorcise.
To start off, there are a few parts that I am unable to translate effectively, but 90% of the summary should be close to spot on. I think my Chinese is getting a little rusty with all the complex words used. Ha Ha.
One thing I liked about Ghost Hunt is definitely the fact about referencing real people who have links with the paranormal. This episode is no different as they stated about the common Vlad III the Impaler as well as a lesser known Countess Erzebet Báthory. That point is not lost to me, which I think is a very strong point of Ghost hunt. I also like the idea how the ghost hunters explored the possibility that the people died due to being envious of health.
First and most importantly, we learn a lot of new things about Naru, even revealing a lot of this mysterious man. First, Lin addressed his father as professor, which I speculate to hint at Dr Davis. It will make sense since Naru has been looking at the man with the “HAH, I know you are fake” look most of the time when Naru is seen after an introduction of Davis in the previous two episodes. It does point to the fact that Naru is in fact the son of Dr Davis.
However, that is not all. It’s also hinted in Lin’s lines that he is in fact here for a mission and that is in fact to test his abilities in Japan. This will also explain why Naru is in fact not well versed in Japanese due to the fact that he has been overseas for a while. This, by the way, assumes that the professor is in fact Dr Davis, but I presume it is for now. With that assumption set in place, that will also mean that Naru’s mom HAS TO BE JAPANESE. I do not know what the implications of this is, but I think that it does open out a whole lot of mysteries on his parentage.
Warning: I might have misinterpreted the two since they did not exactly state that his parents is a professor but the information went on two different lines.
Lin is in fact one of the caretakers of Naru to supervise and monitor his progress as a ghost hunter. My next question will hence be an interesting one. Does Madoka know Dr Davis? The obvious answer is yes and I believe that she is also someone who is closely related to his parents and perhaps the person who teaches Naru about Japanese culture.
Back on the speculations, it is obvious now the motivation of where the missing people have gone. However, I do wonder how they will close this case since it is totally impossible for them to really leave the scene. I mean, they have one whole episode to conclude this series and to me, it will be vehement if they do not resolve such a wonderful arc. I believe that the conclusion will have something to do with the whole demolition of the house, or perhaps that “empty space” that they noted. It is still curious on why Naru said they cannot get rid of the spirits in this case.
This episode also deals with a rather philosophical situation. It is perhaps the quest of eternal life, the promise of utopia corrupting the minds of man. It is a very sad tale as you think of how desperate this man got while attempting to find a way to improve his health. He even killed his own family, the people from the hospital in order to survive. Is it really that worthwhile to have eternal life at the expense of all? What is it all for since everyone will die? Isn’t it ironic that he has gained eternal life of sorts but he cannot even rest after dying?
I do have many other thoughts but I prefer to leave others to explore them for themselves. Very good arc, definitely the best arc cemented by this episode. I want the conclusion soon!