When a mysterious virus kills everyone over the age of thirteen, vampires round up the children and enslave them. One of these is Yuuichirou Hyakuya who ends up being taken to an underground laboratory complex with the other children from his orphanage. Having lived in fear and poverty under the vampires, Yu’s childhood friend Mikaela ends up stealing a map and a gun from one of the noble vampire’s mansions. During the escape, everyone is killed by that very vampire, except Yu who ends up killing the vampire and escaping the complex. He is taken in by vampire slayers who teach him how to hunt. Fast forward four years later and we see Yu emerge anew…
I particularly enjoyed the first episode because as a fan of the manga I felt that the series opened really strongly, staying true to the manga material and getting in all the gory and emotional details of Yu’s back story necessary to set the stage for the subsequent narrative. Everything wraps up rather nicely to encompass Yu’s childhood so that by the time we’re at episode two, we’re caught up. It’s also by the end of the first episode that the audience already has a grasp of the series dynamics. It’s not hard to figure out whether or not you want to stick with the series after this prologue episode.
Starting right off in episode two we get a sense of how utterly fearless Yu has become in the face of these monsters. Unfortunately for Yu, his fearlessness is labeled as military disobedience and he’s suspended from duty to attend a regular school. The suspension will continue unless he’s able to make a friend as well… and Yu doesn’t exactly seem like the friendliest type.
In a flashback, we return to the moment right after Yu escapes the vampire complex. He discovers that the world’s population was reduced to a tenth, but not yet extinguished. He’s taken in by Guren Ichinose from the Japanese Imperial Demon Army from that day on.
The combat animation is clear cut and clean. Everything in the opening looks amazingly smooth and fluid. Despite the shonen action style of the show, I’m impressed with all the details in character design and art direction in all the scenes.
Luckily or unluckily for Yu, a vampire escapes from a nearby facility and Yu gets a chance to fight one. Unfortunately, his weapon isn’t “cursed” yet with an anti-vampire spell which means there’s no way theoretically that he could slay the creature. He does a good enough job of distracting it long enough for Guren and the troops to arrive. With this encounter, it seems that Yu has proven himself to the higher-ups and is officially welcomed into the Moon Demon Company.
What are you pondering today?