Sweet Blood – A Vampire Knight Review

Posted on Posted in Anime

Breakdown

Two sides locked in an eternal struggle. An impressionable young girl caught in between. Can she bring an end to it all and see both sides living together in peace? Twilight in anime form? Oh dear don’t flee in terror just yet, there’s no androgynous vampire guys shimmering in the sunlight here. We also have way more facial expressions than Kristen Stewart does too. Vampire Knight is one part supernatural, two parts kawaii with some dashes of awkward emotional moments for good measure. Is it worth watching though? Let’s find out.

Vampire Knight
Vampirically edgy in a way that makes the ladies swoon!

Synopsis

Duality is an inevitable reality in this world. Light and dark, hot and cold, good and evil.  Vampire and human. The list goes on. However is it always black and white like that? A young girl found herself questioning this one day when she was attacked by a horrifying monster. A rogue vampire, hungry for blood, tried to make Yuki Cross their next poor victim. However, just in the nick of time, a savior came to her rescue. Lo and behold, her guardian turned out to be not a hunter but yet another vampire.

Once her assailant had been brutally put down, she found herself having made a new friend and ally. The vampire Kaname took her in and she in return swore to keep his secret safe. Now she protects the identity of him and other vampires at her high school. Can she forge a world where vampire and human can live in harmony?

Vampire Knight
You can tell this girl (Yuki) is destined for great things by the size of her irises.

Story

Although it has an interesting premise, the story in Vampire Knight can go from emotive to cheesy pretty fast. Much like Twilight, sometimes you’ll be observing an awkward love triangle then the other, we get back to the story of vampires and humans. At times this can lead to things feeling a bit convoluted. It also leads to some moments feeling like a missed opportunity where a more profound, symbolic and thematic story could have easily been established.

This doesn’t make it a bad anime but it can turn off those who were in pursuit of a darker and consistent supernatural tale. On the bright side, the kawaii moments and bits of cliche young adult romance is sure to draw in fans of such things.

Characters

Yuki Cross is an awkward but caring member of Cross Academy’s ‘day class’. Founded by her father the academy is home to both humans and vampires. The former attend the day classes while the latter go to the night classes. The fact that the night class attendees are vampires is a well kept secret from most humans in the day class. Yuki however is one of 2 people in charge of keeping this secret. In most cases, her father’s experiment works out well. However Yuki finds herself having to deal with threats to this peace. Vampire hunters on one end and rogue vampires who give in to their baser instincts on the other can send the dream of peace up in flames in an instant.

To add to this conundrum, Yuki is also at the center of an unorthodox love triangle. This Twilight-esque setup sees her gravitating between Kaname, her saviour and Zero Kiryu, the other person charged with keeping the school’s secret. As if making things a bit more tricky, Zero also has ties to vampire hunters. This sometimes cheesy, sometimes cutesy love triangle is a primary source of entertainment for many fans of the anime. At the end of the day it depends on if its your cup of tea and can make or break your interest in Vampire Knight. Many of the story’s twists and turns also connect to this love triangle and can, latter on, get very bizarre.

Vampire Knight
The night class conceals its vampirism by being as fabulous as possible. No one will ever suspect.

Production Values

Vampire Knight does a good job of capturing the type of atmosphere it wants to generate for the audience. It uses just the right palette of colors to go from kawaii high school setting to somber, dark vampire-esque moments with ease. There’s really nothing to complain about here in that regard as animation and overall look don’t revolutionize anything but they don’t disappoint either. As for sound, this may come up to a matter of personal taste. Some people might find the English voice acting to be fitting and cute while others may find it intolerable. At the end of the day, much like the story, voice acting may boil down to a matter of the individual’s fancy.

Vampire Knight
Hogwarts for vampires.

Conclusion

A somewhat cheesy supernatural, high school romance, Vampire Knight may woo some while turning others off. Though it isn’t lacking in story, deviations to an awkward love triangle and a story that gets more convoluted as it progresses makes it more suitable for those here for the kawaii and teen romance appeal.

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