What They Say:
After the world was infected by a mysterious virus, a pair of orphans named Mikael and Yuichiro find themselves being enslaved by vampires. One day they try to escape alongside the other orphans and all end up being slaughtered by vampires leaving only Yuichiro to escape. Upon reaching the outside world, he joins a group dedicated to defeating the vampires and swears to one day have his revenge.
Content (warning as some portions of this review may contain spoilers):
So now that the majority of the awkward character writing is behind us, it’s time for the show itself to begin in full and with a clean slate. In the process, we’re introduced to yet another new character and one that ends up butting heads with Yu pretty quickly. Unlike the last instance of this though, the new character gets fleshed out in way that a way that actually opposes him, and the show is all the better for it.
Life on the battlefield begins for Yu and co. and they’re introduced to a new squad member named Mitsuba. She doesn’t seem very fond of Shinoa, and can’t stand Yu’s whole “lone wolf” mentality which starts to cause some friction between them. It quickly comes to a head when the group is sent on a mission to rescue some captured people from the vampires and end up running into a little girl supposedly trying to escape. Mitsuba and the others know it’s a trap. but Yu decides to try and rescue her anyway and they’re promptly attacked by a monster called a Four Horsemen of John and some vampires. They manage to kill the Horseman but have to retreat when it comes to the vampires since they’re too deep into enemy territory.
The following bit is where the episode really shines as Mitsuba decides to call Yu out on his reckless behavior (about time someone does it) and thinks his style will get them all killed. In truth though, her dislike of it stems from the fact that she herself used to operate that way and she did indeed get someone else killed because of it. Yu of course isn’t willing to say he was wrong for trying to save the girl but he at least apologizes for how reckless it was and it’s a much needed step in the right direction regarding his character seeing as it’s the first time he’s ever been seriously reprimanded for it. At the same time though, it also makes Mitsuba’s character more understandable in a way the others weren’t so effective at, and hopefully the two can come to terms with each other’s way of thinking that doesn’t ultimately result in Yu being painted in a completely positive light as with previous instances.
Aside from the slight improvement in character writing, it also helps that this week’s battle animation courtesy of Wit. Even the humor works a little bit better this time around as Yu and Shinoa’s banter in the beginning of the episode has them playing off of each other pretty well and helps in making the two feel a bit more likable. It’s not quite enough to recover from it’s rough beginning but with a few more episodes like this one, Seraph could still have a chance to make something decent of itself.
On a bit of a side note, I checked out the first episode of Funimation’s Broadcast dub for the series. Micha Solusud’s performance as Yu is extremely solid and gets the overly grating angst right to the point where I imagine it’s what he would have sounded like as Eren Jaeger in Attack on Titan. Newcomer Justin Briner’s performance as Mikeala is a little rough around the edges but mostly hits where it needs to though it’ll likely be easier to get a clearer read on his performance when the older version of him shows up. My favorite performance from it so far would probably be Eric Vale’s Ferid since it sounds delightfully hammy which is always a fun archetype to hear him as. So far it’s the typical level of quality most people expect from a Funimation dub at this point, which means it’s solidly put together. I’ll likely keep watching it though I’m not sure how much more I’ll comment on it.
Seraph delivers on a surprisingly good episode this week as we finally start off the main conflict and get introduced to another character. Both work pretty well as it allows the show to dish out some solid action and give some much needed opposition to Yu’s character while fleshing out some others. It’s the most amount of genuine fun the show’s offered to date and hopefully the improvement continues
Streamed By: FUNimation