Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Rosario + Vampire Capu2

dvdDirected by: Takayuki Inagaki

First aired: 2008

Contains spoilers

This is the second season of the anime and I looked at season 1 here. The anime is about Tsukune Aono (Daisuke Kisho) a human boy who ends up going to Youkai Academy – a school for monsters. He meets Moka Akashiya (Nana Mizuki) first, a vampire girl whose power is held back by the rosary she wears at her neck. When it is removed she transforms to her true powerful self and kicks monster butt.

To summarise what I said about the first season, it was harem anime – with a large amount of fan service – but it had a dark heart within it.

the haremCapu2 isn’t the same. It has the fan service, in fact I suspect it has more than before, but the dark heart seems to have vanished. What we are left with is a focus on the ‘harem’ – and the fact that all the main girls – Moka; the succubus Kurumu Kurono (Misato Fukuen); the snow woman Mizore Shirayuki (Rie Kugimiya); and Yukari Sendo ( Kimiko Koyama), a witch – seem more determined to make Tsukune their man. This manifests in something close to bedroom farce at times.

kokoaThere is a new character in place, Kokoa Shuzen (Chiwa Saitō), who is Moka’s sister. At first it seems that she hates her sister and is always trying to beat her up. For this she uses the bat, Nazo Koumori (Takehito Koyasu), narrator of the show and, it now appears, her familiar, by transforming him into weaponry. Later it becomes clear it is the power starved Moka she dislikes but she loves her true sister to the point of obsession. She is determined to ‘free’ her sister from the constraints of the rosary.

removing the rosaryOf course the rosary comes away most episodes but we discover that it really is only Tsukune who can remove it (albeit accidentally). When Kokoa tries to remove it, the rosary will not budge and the tugging hurts Moka. We later discover that the rosary (and an identical one that supports the barrier hiding the school from the human world) were both made by Moka’s father (Katsuji Mori) who is one of the three Dark Lords of the monsters.

curry zombiesThere are a variety of monsters to fight and not all are dealt with by Moka. For instance, when a monster with a perchance for curry enslaves the entire school as curry eating zombies it is actually Mizore and her new found culinary skills who comes to the rescue. Sometimes the menace is less in the form of monsters and more in the form of over eager mothers (rather than try to keep things proper – in a human sense – both Mizore’s mother and Kurumu’s mother are keen on arranging a quick marriage and consummation for their respective daughter and Tsukune, Kurumu’s mother is willing to offer herself to Tsukune also).

fan serviceThere are some on-running stories, and there are more of the self-effacing aspects that I liked in the first season – such as Kurumu wearing a rather skimpy French maid’s outfit and explaining to Tsukune that such outfits are all the rage out in the human world, a nod at cosplay. There are more self aware, deconstructive moments in this season with references to specific episode numbers being made by characters and Kurumu, in one episode, saying which character was the main focus in the last few episodes and thus it was her turn to be the centre of the story.

As I say, the darker themes have faded away to a degree but the animation is great fun. 6 out of 10.

The imdb page is here.

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