Anime Review | Seraph of the End (Owari no Seraph) (Lights, Camera, Action!)

By Drew Hurley 10.09.2015

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Seraph of the End (Owari no Seraph)

'Dystopian Futures' are almost as overused a trope as vampires, especially in the anime world, so a series about vampires in the wasteland of a Dystopian future… doesn't sound very promising. However, this is one series that is actually worth giving a chance. After a deadly virus wipes out all adults over the age of 13 across the Earth, children are left to be picked off and gathered up to be used as cattle by the courts of vampires. The humans not enslaved as living buffets live in the wastelands of what remains of the world, embroiled in a war against the vampires and other, darker things that stalk the land.
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The series follows a pair of friends, Yuichiro and Mikaela, who are initially living with other children in an orphanage. When the deadly plague hits, though, they find themselves taken by a force of vampires. They are moved to a new orphanage of sorts, grow up together as a surrogate family, and yet now as livestock under the watch of the bloodsuckers. They dream of escaping, not knowing there are plenty of dangers outside the walls, too. Vampires aren't all there is to fear in the wasteland, as "The Four Horsemen of John" - strange giant demons - wander and slaughter any humans they happen to stumble upon.

Yuichiro is the main protagonist of the series and the story follows him as he travels from his cage to the wasteland of Tokyo. His surrogate family is torn apart… quite literally… and he is next on the menu, but the sacrifice of Mikaela saves him, allowing him to flee to the outside world, where a surprise is waiting… a group of adults who have been waiting for him based on a prophecy. Much like Eren of Attack on Titan fame, Yuichiro is driven by a singular need, to eradicate every vampire, and so he joins their cause and their war, fuelled by his obsession for revenge.

The series jumps forward four years and the tone takes a drastic shift. Suddenly scenes show Yuichiro joining a school, adapting to the day to day life and making friends while also being trained in combat. A strange setup for such a dark and dystopian setting, to say the least! The school looks much like any other and it seems there are havens in the world that are still untouched by the devastation that has ruined the world.

Yuichiro and his friends are training here in hopes of joining the legendary "Moon Demon Company," a group of elite vampire slayers within the "Japanese Imperial Demon Army," led by the man who originally recruited Yuichiro. While Yuichiro is training and growing, Mikaela is undergoing a similar education for his new life… as a vampire. It's not much of a spoiler to say how Yuichiro and Mikaela find themselves on opposite sides of the war, with even the opening to the anime giving it away. The series is filled with more than enough great twists and genuine surprises that more than make up for Mikaela's reveal.

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There are plenty of setups through the series for a bigger picture that is still to be explained; the origin of the virus, where the vampires came from, and how their courts work, plus where the demon weapons come from, along with so much more. The anime adaptation is impressive, but that's not surprising considering it's by WIT studio, the same team who brought Attack on Titan from manga to anime. The character designs and world set-up within the pages of Jump Square also transition fantastically and look great in motion.

Rated 7 out of 10

Very Good - Bronze Award

Rated 7 out of 10
Studio WIT has done a great job once again. The series, Seraph of the End (Owari no Seraph), holds a lot of promise, especially with the cliff-hangers that the end of this season sets up. For fans looking for a dark shonen to hold them over until the inevitable new season of Attack on Titan, this is a great choice.

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