I should warn the prospective reader that there’s definitely SPOILERs here! I consider myself spoiler proof. After all, if it’s ruined just by someone telling you what happens, then it couldn’t have been very good to begin with, right? However, there are plenty of people out there who’d be very angry if they read on only to find a series spoiled for them. So here’s the warning…read at your own risk.
Korean theme songs, fairly good characters, and an interesting plot; sometimes following cliches can lead to a fairly decent series. Plus it’s only twelve episodes long. And it doesn’t fritter them away, like Rozen Maiden.
The main character, Jirou, uses a silver sword to hunt down evil vampires, known as Kowloon Children. He travels with his younger brother Kotaro, to the Special Zone, an area where humans and vampires live in peaceful co-existance.The humans call themselves Red Bloods and the non-Kowloon vampires are called Black Bloods. When they reach their destination, they are greeted by a human, Mimiko Katsuragi:
She is what is known (in a throw-back to the ol’ Getbackers days) as a Compromiser, a human who invites vampires to live in the Special Zone and helps the ones without bloodlines find a place to live. Since Jirou is an Old Blood (meaning he’s over a hundred years old) and both Kotaro and Jirou are of unknown bloodines, they wind up relying heavily on Mimiko for shelter and connections. These “connections” are the three major vampire sects of the Special Zone: those from the Continent (i.e. mainland Asia), Europe, and the Darkness (a coalition of everyone else). All is not well here, as no one wants to deal with a vampire killer like Jirou. Plus, the Children of Kowloon are after something hidden inside the Special Zone, and their attack is lead by a former friend of Jirou’s, Casa:
Jirou is like a toned down Alucard and Vash in that he provides both comic relief and some good action sequences.
I just finished this series, and I’m actually quite impressed with the tight storytelling and fairly dynamic characters.
The main character is powerful, but not as powerful as some of the other characters. He’s also got a few inconvenient weaknesses to water and sunlight, unlike some of the other vampire characters. He’s also destined to die, eventually. Alice Eve, the woman who originally turned him into a vampire, was turned to dust and reincarnated into a baby, whom Jirou adopted and named Kotaro. Alice’s bloodline possesses the special ability to reabsorb those they have turned into vampires. Thus, Jirou is doomed, and he knows it.
There’s still a few cliches, such as Jirou kind of being a rip-off of Alucard and Vash, and the bratty younger brother, the vampires that eat other vampires, the problem of co-existing with your enemies, etc. Another problem I have is with the bratty little kid character, Kotaro, who is Jirou’s brother:
There is some relief in that Jirou doesn’t really take crap from his little brother, and will usually bash him into walls if he gets too annoying. But where else will you see an anime that features annoying little kids getting the snot beat out ’em? Well….Okay, there’s probably a few of those anime out there, too….
In the end all the questions I had seemed to be answered, but I’m hoping for a second season. There’s still a major villain to deal with, a few minor henchmen still lurking around, and a secret that is devulged to Jirou about what is being hidden in the legendary Yard 11 of the Special Zone.
Also, the end theme song, “Shingiru” is performed in Korean by the South Korean band, Loveholic. It’s very catchy!
Overall, it really is worth a quick look.
Originally Published at Anime Impressions on Windows Live, then reposted to Blogger on 12-27-2007