It’s not hard to understand why Vampires are considered sexy by so many people. Power, as they say, is an aphrodisiac. And Vampires have power over us puny mortals. (My brain is sighing “Oh, gawd…” as I type that. I just want you to know. lol) Vampires were originally seen as very traditional European royalty, but somehow in the last couple of decades have morphed into poser Gothlings. A sad fate for Vampires, I say. But today we come not to eulogize Dracula, but to completely, totally ignore him, and speak instead of Miyu, a young girl with a mission that makes her a “Vampire” only in the broadest possible sense.
Miyu is completely inhuman, which of course makes her instantly attractive to those puny mortals that even notice she exists. As we discussed in regards to the Miyu OAV, to know her is to obsess about her. :-) Her powers include sucking the memories out of people along with their blood, hence the vampire thing.
In Volume 1 of Vampire Princess Miyu, we are introduced to this iteration of Miyu, and her position as guardian and hunter, fated to walk through our human world to snare random escapee spirits, cage ’em and send them home – kind of like the Animal Cops, only with inhuman spirity things instead of stray dogs.
The general tone of Volume 1 is, well, creepy. Depressing and creepy. With extra creepy on top. That alone makes this a great volume – but you might find that the double helping of irony at the end of the first three episodes has a bitter taste.
Miyu, in between stoping Shinma and sending them back to their dimension, pretends to be a schoolgirl so she can…wear a uniform? Pass as a human, although why that’s important now, isn’t really delved in to. We meet Miyu’s faithful bishie in Volume 1, Lava, so the straight girls have something to watch, too. (For the record – I totally approve of lavender hair on bishies.)
In Volume 2, we get the addition of Reiha, a snow spirit with a tragic backstory, an obsessive grudge against Miyu, and a doll with a rude mouth. Both Reiha and her doll Matsukaze are voiced by my beloved Ogata Megumi. It’s a little-known fact that the characters were specifically written for her and that she recorded them in real-time, switching back and forth between Reiha’s Keigo-speaking girly voice and Matsukaze’s boyish crude tone without pause. Listening to them talk makes me adore MO even more than usual.
Yuri in these early episodes is implication only. Reiha, like Himiko in the OVA, seems to have trouble thinking about things that are not Miyu. And while nothing explicit has yet begun to occur, there’s a vibe with Miyu’s classmates that reads Yuri to those of us who are motivated to read it that way. Again, like the OAV, these volumes are totally Nioi-ke. Sure, we’re making it up, mostly, but it works for us, so who cares? :-) Be patient – there is more to come. Promise.
A meal of Miyu makes a nice change of pace in my school-girl heavy diet, and it’s always good to interject a little creepy into one’s life from time to time, so one does not begin to take happy for granted. Above all – how nice to see girls who look like girls, women who look like women, boys who looks like boys and supernatural lavender-haired bishies who look like…ah, you get my point.
Ratings for Volume 1 and 2:
Art – 8
Story – 7
Characters – 7
Irony – 7
Yuri – 2
Service – 2
Overall – 8
Personally, I totally favor the arrogantly sexy, tuxedo-clad silver-haired gentleman Vampire to the leather and velvet-clad pouty-faced twenty-something set.