After wrapping up with Freezing: Vibration, Strike the blood was really the worst anime to follow it up with, not really as bad as Freezing but far from stellar viewing.
But maybe i should have expected this. There are certain genres of anime that simply turn me away, the first being slice of life, which i almost never bother with, except for that one anime whose name i forget about some guy that adopts his grandfather’s daughter from an illicit affair-and up to this day i have no idea how it happened that i ever sat down to watch it even knowing what it was, despite the fact that i enjoyed it immensely.
Slice of life series just turn me off completely, stories i know i will not enjoy and always reject watching or reading. Shoujo and Harem come in a close second. Shoujo i might touch once in a while, depending on the story, but Harem i ignore almost completely, mostly because anime and manga in this genres is always predictable, almost like all the writers are following a similar blue print.
Strike the Blood is harem, and the moment i saw that description, i knew what to expect, so maybe i shouldn’t have been too disappointed with what i watched.
The Fourth Primogenitor—the world's strongest vampire, should be no more than a legend. Yet once, long ago, rumour has it that this being of myth manifested in Japan, accompanied by twelve Kenjuu and spreading calamity, a phantom of destruction.
It’s with this knowledge in mind that the government and the Lion organization decided to dispatch the Sword Shaman, this special attack mage, chosen for a mission of observation and then possibly obliteration taking the shape of the apprentice Himegari Yukina.
In possession of the anti-primogenitor spirit spear, Yukina is said to have arrived in the Demon District, Itogami City. What is the true identity of the Fourth Primogenitor, Akatsuki Kojou, whom she encountered over there?
Is this really what all harem series are about, a male protagonist who might or might not be clueless about his objective in life, slowly but surely attracting the attention of every strong female character that he encounters, each of whom then spends the rest of the series vying for his adoration?
I don’t get it? What’s the appeal? Because STB pretty much followed this formula. Not that Koujo didn’t exactly deserve the female attention he was garnering…actually that was just it, it didn’t really feel like he was doing anything to deserve it.
And that isn’t the only thing turned this show off for me. Strike the Blood had potential, i think; truth be told i remember coming across this anime and thinking the title sounded cool, so maybe i wasn’t too discerning in choosing the anime in the first place.
Anyway, Strike the blood:
+ The primary protagonist- irritated me, and not in that obvious manner that you would find in someone like Shiro from Fate/Stay night. I mean, i don’t need my main characters to be super humanly flawless in all that they do, but koujo felt like the only ordinary fellow in a group of extra ordinary individuals.
He was ordinary without being bland, his existence characteristic of some random support character in any other anime series, a supposedly all powerful immortal vampire that spent a considerable amount of time getting his ass kicked, very passive, continuously stumbled upon situations rather than wilfully getting involved, spouted a lot of cliché shonen lines in trying to justify any unnecessary anger he displayed and… okay all these are starting to seem like rather insufficient reasons for me to dislike him.
So let’s just conclude that Koujp was largely lacking as the main character of an anime series.
+The concept- was kind of dumb to me, a series about a super powerful fourth progenitor that was barely average in ability, vampires that didn’t possess anything characteristic of the undead; a number of very vague reasons to engage in unnecessary combat.
Strike the blood wasted way too many opportunities, introduced a ton of would be intriguing elements that it made no attempts to elucidate upon or inject into the story in any meaningful way, like the Lion something something Organization, the church, war dancer something, the witch of the void.
And did i mention that this show was about the fourth progenitor. They could have placed some effort into really exploring what that meant, at least allow us a glimpse of the other progenitors in action, to enable us to understand just what set a progenitor apart, because at least then we could allow Koujo the excuse of being an premature progenitor, maybe explaining why he was so weak.
And what was with those brief flash backs we got at the start that supposedly explained what happened to Koujo and how he became what he is now, which they did nothing what so ever to explore?
Basically, what was with all those unexplained unexplored elements of the story? Maybe Strike the blood is a sequel to some anime i didn’t know about which explained most of these elements, because that would explain the vagueness.
+Characters- the cast was largely unnecessary to the story, existing only to create the illusion of real life; and real life must be filled with all sorts of unimportantpersons surrounding a core essential individual, which Koujo wasn’t by the way.
I get the One piece message, when it tries to explain to me why people seem to flock around Luffy. Koujo comes off as a random piece of meat that is important for no logical reason (again, i don’t think they explained the threat of the fourth progenitor well enough).
--Positives- i will admit, i normally hate the female leads in anime of the genre as STB. But Yukina was okay, if not a little irritating during her mini spurts of jealousy.
And…okay i wanted to say something positive about the action, but i can’t. Now Strike the Blood’s action scenes i can call bland, nothing special, which is an area where i thought the anime would excel. Again, no serious attempts to explain the concept of familiars, homunculus and the nature of characters like Astarte.
VERDICT: lazy, that’s what Strike the blood was, not nearly as interested in explaining itself as it should have been, and as a result a lot of the dialogue was gibberish, with characters spouting all sorts of nonsensical terms and words regarding concepts they hadn’t bothered to explain, mother system this, angel faux that…
Does that mean it was total crap? No. It was entertaining; i can’t say that i was having a great time watching it; rather it passed the time well enough, worth checking out in fact, because i think there are some people out there that might enjoy it.
But its far from quality anime.
RATING: 5/10, i really wish there was more vampire to Koujo, because, minus the blood sucking, he was just another Pokémon summoning high school kid.
Anyway, what did you think of Strike the blood? Worse than i described it, or better than am giving it credit for? Leave your comment below. I personally place it miles above Freezing.