Square Enix’s (Rabbit) Doubt
There’s a lot of blood, gore, and mature themes.
Horror, whodunit mystery, psychological thriller.
Read up to:
The whole thing.
Quality of the drawings
Doubt is illustrated by Yoshiki Tonogai, who also illustrated the manga adaptation of Higurashi’s Himatsubushi-hen (Time Killing) arc. For those who don’t know, it’s the last of the four arcs in the original series. Honestly, I found the drawings to be substandard. Perhaps they just didn’t suit my personal tastes, but I’ll say it outright: I thought they were somewhat ugly. By the end, though, I was no longer distracted by the drawing quality. They aren’t pretty, but they’re not awful, either. They’re bearable, and they didn’t turn me away immediately.
As with most mysteries, Doubt’s plot is its make-it-or-break-it feature. Thankfully, this one made it. The premise is this: there is a widespread cell phone game called Rabbit Doubt, where one player is a wolf and the rest are rabbits. The wolf player has to deceive the rabbit players while they try to guess who the wolf is. Meanwhile, the rabbits are eaten one by one. If the wolf eats all the rabbits before they can guess who he is, the wolf wins. (We should play a game like that, shouldn’t we? xD)
A boy named Yuu is having a real-life meet up with other players of this game. At first, it’s great, but they soon find themselves locked up in an abandoned psychiatric hospital with no way to escape. The plot grows increasingly complex from there as they realize that this is it: this is the game. They’re playing Rabbit Doubt. Each person has a barcode somewhere on their body that can open doors. The catch? Once a barcode is used, it can only open the door it’s first used on and no other. Parts of the plot are confusing, but for the most part, it’s well-done. Parts are predictable, where others are surprising. There’s no shortage of twists or turns.
I found that after Yuu discovered the wolf (or who he thought was the wolf) it started to drag on and on. A good part of the manga was just conversing with the wolf after most of the action was over. The very, very end is the saving grace here. Of course, I knew who the killer was… but I’m not telling; most people aren’t as good at whodunits as I am. :D
Most of the characters in Doubt are clichéd, but well-executed. The cast is as follows:
Yū Aikawa, the main character. He is the ‘good guy’. Not much else to say about him.
Eiji Hoshi, your typical badass archetype. He was even a member of a gang. Doesn’t like Hajime.
Haruka Akechi, the tough girl character. She doesn’t see much character development.
Rei Hazama, who used to star in a popular television show. A hypnotist. Now in a wheelchair.
Mitsuki Hōyama, Yuu’s childhood friend and a typical schoolgirl character... With a twist. She was probably the best character of them all.
Hajime Komaba, the average male glasses character. He’s the most intelligent of the group, and seems somewhat cold and reserved. He didn’t show up for the initial group meeting. He’s a med student.
I would say it was original. These types of mystery manga have been done before, but all things considered, Rabbit Doubt was pretty… well, original.
Pfft. It’s a horror mystery. Of course I enjoyed it.
37/50, or 74%.
I’m kinda harsh, aren’t I? o-o Honestly, I thought it was good. If you like Higurashi (or other psychological thrillers) you’d like this, hands down.