yothsothgoth's Vampire Hunter D Tv Review

Vampire Hunter D

Vampire Hunter D tv Review

Vampire Hunter D and Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust are two classic Gothic anime movies. Both are based on a book series by Hideyuki Kikuchi, about a future Earth where vampires rule the night.
They are hunted by men, but one hunter stands out among the rest: the dhampir (half-vampire) D.

Story & Characters

Note: This review is for the original Vampire Hunter D movie, based off the first novel.
I base the plot, characters, music, etc. on the time the novel was written and the anime was released.

What science fiction loving person can resist a post-apocalyptic world filled with humans, mutants, and vampires? The main character, "D", is the most handsome, elegant, and shady vampire hunter that ever lived. D is what they call a dhampir, a half-human/half-vampire. Rejected by humans and vampires alike, D struggles with his dark secret and saving a girl from a monster. The story encompasses D's protection of a human farm girl who has been given the "kiss of the nobility." The movie does not go into depth as much as the novel in D's internal struggle in finding his place in this world, but it does get the basic story through. The characters are interesting and you can have sympathy for their struggles, but the movie as a whole tends to leave a dry taste in a high-geared-anime-loving mouth.

The story kept me interested, even though I knew how the story would come out. Its a classic everyone should see once, just to see how visionary the creators were for that time period. The over used post-apocalyptic theme has just been overdone too many times now days. Because of this, it makes many viewers less likely to watch it because anime now seems to go through cycles of re-hashing the same theme over and over again. You've also got the common story of the overly powerful hero (the fact that he's so pretty even men think he's attractive is pretty modern for its time) that must protect the weaker, yet strong willed heroine from the clutches of evil. You've also got that combined with the half-breed taboo which makes it something we've all heard of before. Girls, who at one time dreamt of a knight in armor coming to my rescue, will most likely enjoy the story. Guys might not care as much because personally there weren't enough battles and the action sequences went by too quickly.

Overall, the entire story progresses slowly, mostly because it was based off of the book and they wanted some serious character development. I found this to be the most impressive about the movie, considering how much anime lacks that extra effort now.

Rating: 5


The art from the movie is what you'd expect from a low budget film of its time. There is not much neither you, nor they can do about it. If I remember correctly, when asked about the original movie, Hideyuki Kikuchi has said that he wished they could've done it better (artwork, design), but for the time you couldn't ask for more than what they were capable of. They did make the effort to base the D's character designs off of the book, but unfortunately they did not make the same effort for the rest of the characters. To me, that was a major disappointment. Because of this, the fiends were not as formidable looking and the girls were plain.

The different characters did stick out pretty well; humans, mutants, vampires and the like all were different in their own way. The punks looked like rockers from the 1980s and the backgrounds of fighting sequences were done in tie-dye and flashing lights. You could tell when the movie was made by looking at those common errors in older anime. The low number of overly bright colors they used clash terribly with everything in the film.

On a positive note, the movie is unlike many older films (Ex. Akira), which at times could be difficult discerning a guy from a girl except from the voice; Vampire Hunter D makes sure you know who is who and what is what. The art isn't what I'd call excellent, but it was good enough to sit through and watch for some enjoyment. The characters are not drawn in detail except for shadows and age lines. I found this to be a major disappointment, since I've been spoiled on highly detailed and intricate costumes of today's more modern anime.

The animation itself was not a fluid as it should've or could've been, but it wasn't so bad you had to stop the movie. You just needed to get used to the fact that it was an older movie and animation wasn't what it is today. One moment they'd show you the hero, next frame, the villain and then back and forth throughout the fight or dialogue. It would flash back and forth so fast, sometimes making you sick if you're not used to it or ready for it. At times the repetitve flashing was so bad enough to subliminally say, "Start your seizures now!!!" The background and moving frames were also used over and over again throughout the movie, seriously reducing its aesthetic value. They tried; but like I said, they also had a low budget.

Rating: 4


The sound was nothing to be impressed by. It was very old school with the corny synthesized sounds. Now, if you thought the music synthesizer in the movie Dune was cool, then you'd enjoy that classic 80s soundtrack. For me, the sound was just awful.

Voice acting was about the same, old and unoriginal. D, who is stoic and supposed to be quiet, was fine; other more active speakers were not really notable and their lack of effort in their acting made the movie not as enjoyable as it could've been.

Rating: 3


It was an enjoyable classic because of its timeless story. That's why I made the effort to watch it. I ended up liking it pretty well. I think overall the movie was a success for its time. I also think they did the best that they could for their time and for what they could afford. I believe that Hideyuki Kikuchi is a great author and if he could do it all over again, he most definitely would. Kikuchi had a wonderful imagination and helped jumpstart science fiction novels and anime in Japan. Many current works have been influenced by his original novels. I rated this movie higher overall because it was a decent attempt for its time at a good story.

I also blame any current lack of interest in watching this cult classic envisioned by its imaginative author, on those current writers who've copied his original stories.

Rating: 6

Final Verdict

4.83 (moderate)

Reviewed by yothsothgoth, Jul 21, 2008


  1. yothsothgoth Jul 21, 2008

    Well, its my first attempt at a review. ...be gentle..

    I originally had problems submitting it in the first place.
    I just noticed that for some reason a few words are funky.
    That makes me mad considering how much effort I put into it.
    What happened and is there anything I can do to fix it?

  2. shoujoboy Jul 21, 2008

    If you type it up in another program and just import it to MT, it has a way with fudging around with your formatting. Depending on what you use, it will hate apostrophes and semi-colons. I usually type it up in notepad as the transition is flawless, although you lose the benefits of a more robust program. Best thing to do is after you submit the review, go hit edit and knock out the kinks.

    As for your review itself, I'd say it's a good initial effort. And you are in a tough position starting with a middle-of-the-road anime. Reviewing average shows is the toughest because you can't slam it and you can't rave about how great it is. Finding adjectives to describe "meh" is hard. On that subject, I completely agree with on this. I wondered if I was in the minority for just outright not liking this show, but now I see I'm not.

    Defintely going to look forward to future submissions.

  3. davidh01 Jul 21, 2008

    I can see you've put a good deal of effort into writing this one, so good job there. You've been able to clearly explain your opinion and give evidence to justify your scoring; so again good job. You've been able to convince me that this series has some merit in respect of the story, but is let down by visual and audio - in your opinion, of course. I don't have the benefit of seeing Vampire Hunter D, so I'm not in a position to debate your commentary aside for saying it is nice, clear, and succinct.

    Regarding the formatting issues, on the left-hand side under "Options" you will have two sections: "Writer Options" and "Reader Options". Under the "Writer Options" section is an option called "Edit Review". You can then go back into the review on-line and edit (take out) the problem formatting. Don't worry too much about it showing up in the first instance as, like most reviewers, I expect you've done the review in an external editor (e.g. Word). If the issue crops up again, you can use the "Edit Review" option to make any adjustments necessary.

    In short, a good first attempt.

  4. yothsothgoth Jul 21, 2008

    Thank you so much! I completely missed that. ^^

    It was difficult to grade this movie. Its so much older than most I've seen and its difficult to try to explain yourself while not trying to be too redundant. I had fun in making this review. I think I'd like to do another one with a more up-to-date anime. :D

  5. BossMac Jul 24, 2008

    I could've felt that it deserved more than a 5.

    Anyways, your writing is quite clear and to the point. I know it must be hard trying to come up with words to just hit that spot of in between very good and very bad just like sho pointed out.

    You kinda went short on the Sound section. Was is really that bad?

    Anyways, a nice first try. Please ignore all our comments and proceed with writing your next review.


    I tend to write my reviews using my own guestbook, hitting the preview button as I proceed then copy-pasting it on to the Review Submission form. That way I could get a clear shot of what'd look like.

  6. yothsothgoth Jul 24, 2008

    Thank you very much for your imput and ideas with the text preview.
    I appreciate it all... the good with the bad. :) I have to learn to write better reviews somehow. ;)

    I do want to point out that I absolutely adore the Vampire Hunter D novels and I was just very disappointed with what happened with the first movie. I wanted to rate it higher, but I just couldn't in good conscience. I know that happens when a book is brought into movie format. You're always disappointed somehow. This time, I don't blame the author but the low budget and the year it was made (as I'm sure you noticed in the review). Perhaps if the movie had been made a few years later, things would've been much better and more thought would've been put into its production.

    The music was pretty awful. It did portray the desolation of a postapocalypse world, but was twangy and synthisized so much it was obnoxious. The other characters- namely Doris, Larmica, and Magnus Lee were overacting sometimes and underacting other times. There really wasn't a "happy medium" with their voice acting in my opinion.

  7. angelxxuan Banned Member Aug 31, 2008

    well for it's time it was a pretty good anime, but you've based the rating on now anime not of that time frame, but all in all the review was good ^_^

  8. pigmypuff Jun 05, 2009

    vampire hunter is so cool.like all vampire series

  9. ResonantSoul Jul 23, 2009

    might try it~

  10. lordryo Jul 28, 2009

    Good review.

  11. SchRita Aug 23, 2009

    Thanks for the review!

    merged: 10-31-2009 ~ 09:02pm
    Thanks for the review!

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