Vampire Anime, much like the classic story trope itself, has been around for a very, very long time in the anime world. Gaining big notoriety with Vampire Hunter D (1985 ver.), the genre picked up speed before peaking in the 2000s. That is not to say that their journey is over, but rather, that it has cooled off in recent years. When you think about it, what comes to mind when you hear vampires? Stakes? Pointy Teeth? Garlic? Bats? An old abandoned castle? The ideas go on and on, but the concept is the same of a monster with pointy teeth that hunts on humans. Where does that come from though? If you are new to anime or the genre in general, welcome! We here are going to dive into the vampire genre while recommending anime that are quintessential to this genre.
Hyper-violent and Gory
If you came here to think this was some sort of supernatural tea party where everyone just happens to have fangs… you are gonna have a bad time. Vampire stories, whether they be from anime or fiction novels, always have a concept of violence, preying on others, and of course, darkness. The story builds upon itself until it is necessary to confront the final evil in the end. However, this is not always the case as you would want it to be, as in a lot of anime, the vampire is the main character! Tasked usually with doing the bidding of a human or other supernatural being, they use their powers, which are usually beyond the power of a regular vampire, and strike swiftly and powerfully to decimate those that rise against them. Not to mention too, what we would normally consider a “good guy” in a vampire story, are usually deranged individuals who make everything more difficult all while screeching or chanting bible verses. The following two anime are that. So if you love blood, gore, guts, and violence, be absolutely sure to catch the following two series.
- Episodes: 10
- Aired: Feb. 2006 - Dec. 2012
One one side of the coin of reality, creatures of the night live to plague humans. On the other side is Hellsing, an organization headed by Integra Fairbrook Wingates Hellsing who commands an exceptional amount of power to strike back at not only these monsters, but anyone and anything that would threaten the country of England’s existence. For the difficult job though, Integra calls in Alucard, a vampire who serves her and works against his own vampire kind to maintain peace. After he turns a human, Seras, on the brink of death into his progeny, the two being to battle anything and everything that is foolish enough to rise up against the Hellsing Organization. Alucard is able to use any of his powers at his disposal as long as he is not caught by Alexander Anderson, a priest hell bent on exorcising him.
Hellsing Ultimate is the continuation of Hellsing, the TV series. The first couple episodes are more or less a recap of the series and continues to tell the story. Hellsing Ultimate is an OVA though so fair warning, it may be hard to get your hands on a copy of it, but do because this is what a vampire anime is all about. Darkness, fighting, violence, guns ablaze, and more are what you will find by looking under the hood of this anime. Alucard is a bit of a nontraditional vampire in that he serves a human, but everything else against him is not and he makes sure that the viewer is aware from the first moment he steps on screen.
Hellsing Ultimate Trailer:
- Episodes: 50
- Aired: Apr. 2005 - Sept 2006
Saya has a pretty good life in Okinawa with her family. She does suffer from anemia and amnesia, but they are not the worst things in life, so she gets by. One day though, she is attacked by something that wants to feed on human blood. She is saved by a man man Haji who forces Saya to drink his blood. Within an instant, her life changes as the vampire in her and her blood awakens. She kills the monster with relative ease and learns that her past is shrouded in mystery for some reason that she needs to figure out. In comes Red Shield, an organization charged with destroying these horrible monsters. She is going to have to team up with this new weird man Haji and the organization to put a stop to these hellish beasts as well as unlock whatever is hidden in her memories.
Blood+ is another fantastic, hyper violent anime. Where Hellsing Ultimate gives you darkness and conspiracy, Blood+ gives you story and drama. In fact, it’s well-liked for its characterization of all things. Especially when you do not see things coming. While 50 episodes seems like a lot, even at the middle and the three quarters mark, you will be mashing the next button to see what comes in the next episode. Blood+ is like vampires with a slight twist as Saya uses her blood on her sword, yet another non-typical vampire facet, to fight. In fact, her blood itself activates the weapon. When you are done, be sure to check out Blood-C as well for a twist on the original.
Yes, There Always Is Romance Better than Twilight
That which shall not be mentioned is, to some, a scourge on the face of what romance and vampires can be when mixed. In order to be safe though, we like to view it as a starting point to show that yes, vampires and non-vampires can fall in love and have a fun journey while doing so. Oddly too, Japan loves to court the idea of a supernatural being falling in love with an incredibly average-looking and acting individual. Somehow though, they are able to overcome their differences and fall in some sort of love that will most assuredly offer some form of a bite kiss.
Rosario to Vampire (Rosario + Vampire)
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: Jan. 2008 - Mar. 2008
Tsukune Aono is your average teenager, but his grades are so poor that he could not get into any high school! As as last-ditch attempt to have their knuckleheaded son learn something, his parents enroll him at Youkai Academy. He hops on the bus and ends up at the school, but… something seems off. All of the students are transforming?! Yes, Youkai Academy is a school for youkai and monsters. The students take classes just like normal humans do, but they also take classes on how to blend in with human society. There is one rule that all students must follow on campus: If a human is spotted, they are to be killed immediately! As Tsukune has a fateful encounter with a girl names Moka, his life changes where he will not only stay at the academy, but he will start a relationship with Moka who is actually a vampire! Not to mention too, he is going to have a slew of other girls who want a piece of him and his heart as well. What will he do!
Yes, this is just like what you would expect with the harem and ecchi genres meeting the supernatural ones. Moka is a vampire in this series. And to top it off, she’s the most popular girl in school, well-sought after, and her father is a monster both in reality and figuratively. Tsukune definitely has his work cut out for him because for a while, he has to fake being human. Moka’s necklace keeps her vampire alter ego hidden inside her, but it does pop out from time to time creating even more drama. This vampire ecchi romcom keeps the vampire theme going but makes it more lighthearted.
Rosario to Vampire Trailer:
- Episodes: 13
- Aired: Apr. 2008 - Jul. 2008
Cross Academy has two types of students that enroll at their school: Those who are part of the Day Class and those who are a part of the Night Class. It seems like the elites attend classes at Night while the normies attend class during the day. However, that could not be farther from the truth. These classes are actually human classes and vampire classes, and they even live in different dorms. Yuuki and Zero are the two who work together to maintain order. Yuuki has a crush on the head of the Night Class Dorm, Kaname. Zero hates vampires, so surely someone somewhere along the line is about to trip up, but where?
Vampire Knight is actually shoujo, so while Hellsing and Blood+ feed your violence and vampire stereotype needs, Vampire Knight is going to crank up the drama and romance to new heights, and boy do they ever. The secrecy of keeping the humans ignorant and the vampires secluded from them hangs in the balance as romance unfolds which you know means one thing: DRAMA. Get ready for an adventure.
Vampire Knight Trailer:
These are just some of the suggestions that we have for you if you find yourself new to anime and want to get bit by the vampire bug in anime. Sure, there are lots, but these four that we have suggested are some of the best and easy to get into. There are other great shows like Owari no Seraph, Kekkai Sensen, Blood Lad, Shiki, the Monogatari series and even Demi-chan wa Kataritai on the other end of the spectrum. All either focus on vampires or have vampire characters. Be sure to leave a comment if you have a vampire anime that you love or want others to know about that isn’t already mentioned here. Till next time!