Over the winter, I heard about Studio Deen’s news about adapting Matsuri HINO’s manga, Vampire Knight, into an anime. Awesome! Then they mentioned that Mamoru MIYANO (Mamo-chan! ♥) was going to be cast as Zero. Awesome x 2! I think that may have been the impetus for my return to watching anime. I love the manga, and if one of my favorite seiyuu was going to be cast as my favorite character, then it was a sign from the universe that I should resume my fangirlish ways.
So, a few episodes in, and truth be told, I’m disappointed.
Let’s start with the heroine, Yuki. Okay, I understand that she’s a popular seiyuu and that she was originally cast in the drama CDs as well, but I think choosing Yui HORIE as Yuki was an uninspired choice. There have been times while I was watching the show that I thought I was rewatching an episode of Fruits Basket, especially with Kyo and Yuki, err, Zero and Kaname over there.
Away from me, you crazy fangirls!
Which brings me to my second point — I realize that shoujo series, by their very nature, are formulaic, thriving on the same familiar cliches but adding a minor twist here and there. I know that. I’ve read and watched shoujo to get that. But what frustrates me about the first 2 episodes of Vampire Knight is a lot of time is wasted on atmosphere and emoting. YES, I get that Yuki has a childhood crush on Kaname. YES, I get that Kaname is awesome and beautiful and a god among vampires (and human fangirls). YES, I get that Zero is a little (or lot) jealous of Kaname and Yuki’s bond. Now what? Is Yuki actually going to do something about her crush? Of course not. Some days, I wish some of these shoujo heroines would actually join us in the 21st century and grow spines. And brains.
(Yes, yes, I know it’s not cute for a Japanese girl to admit her feelings in a coarse way, but sometimes, the long-drawn out crushes are so aggravating…)
Believe it or not, I actually enjoy HINO-sensei’s work. I read a couple of chapters of the Vampire Knight manga and thought it was beautiful, entrancing, and sexy — just like the way vampires are supposed to be. I don’t know what part of that isn’t transferring over to the anime, but to be fair, I’ll stick around for a few more episodes. It may just surprise me in the end.
This would’ve been more interesting had Zero pulled the trigger.