kawaiiguy's Shingetsutan Tsukihime Tv Review

Shingetsutan Tsukihime

Shingetsutan Tsukihime tv Review

Shiki Tohno was severely injured in a large accident in his childhood. After miraculously surviving the event, he was sent away from the family to recuperate. As a result of the injury, he is now able to see "life lines" on objects and people which, when cut, will destroy them.

After years away from home, Shiki moves back following the death of the head of the Tohno family. While walking home from school, he meets a beautiful woman whom he is inexplicably drawn to kill. At firs he thinks her murder was all just a nightmare - until she reappears in front of him.

It turns out the woman is Arcueid Brunestud, and a vampire princess! She promptly recruits Shiki afterwards to help fight Roa, the antagonist vampire currently on a killing spree.

Story & Characters

Knives and blood and vampires... oh my! This is probably the best way to sum up Tsukihime. Originally released in 2003, Shingetsutan Tsukihime is loosely based on the Type Moon doujin H-game of the same name. The game gained such a following (from the plot and not H-scenes) that an anime was created. The plot featured an intricate and highly interleaved story, with about 5 different ways to go through the story (one for each main female character).

Since the anime format is somewhat limited, only one story was really explored. Tsukihime features Tonho Shiki as our male protagonist. When he was younger, Shiki suffered from a case of amnesia after an accident. Whenever he opened his eyes, however, he saw strange lines covering everything around him. If he severed these lines, the object would fall apart.

Being afraid of his "new" power, he runs off and discovers a woman claiming to be a mage. She gives him a pair of mysterious glasses that hides the lines from his vision, thus allowing him to return to a normal life. After recovery, he moves in with relatives and starts attending school. Years later, after the death of his father, he is asked to return home and live in the traditional Tonho residence. He reunites with Akiha, his younger sister (the new head of the family), and Kohaku and Hisui (the maids). Isn't this starting to sound like a hentai already?

At the same time, strange killings have started happening in town. The victims seem to be missing all their blood, as if it was sucked from them. In rage, Shiki happens to stumble upon an attractive female vampire and cut her to bits. As a result, he must help her hunt down the actual killer. At school, a mysterious new upperclassman has appeared. She seems very interested in Shiki's well being, but doesn't explain why. There's also the cute female classmate that obviously has a thing for Shiki. Our cast of characters is now complete, with one male lead and several (attractive) female leads... plus the occasional bad guy and gimpy male friend.

Overall, I felt the story of the anime version of Tsukihime was well done. It kept me interested from episode one and captured my attention throughout. The later half of the series used cliffhangers very effectively and held me on edge while waiting for the next episode. From my research, however, I've found that the series paled in comparison to the game.

Rating: 7


Since the majority of Tsukihime takes place at night (the best time to go vampire hunting, among other things), everything is done with dark and ominous colors. The background scenery is left very simple and actually feels somewhat like a game. In terms of characters, the original designs were maintained (except they were always fully clothed). Kohaku and Hisui are just as cute as ever and Acrueid feels just as warm.

I only noticed a slight flaw in clothing design. It seems that each character had a very limited wardrobe. While this made sense for school uniforms and maid outfits, each person seemed to have a very limited collection of casual clothing. Shiki seemed to switch between two different shirts (even if one became soaked with blood) while Acrueid seemed to lack any costume changes. While this wasn't a serious problem, I didn't think that Hisui was that good at doing laundry and washing out stains...

Rating: 7


Music is another area where Tsukihime shines. Following with the nighttime theme, most of the soundtrack carries dark overtones and tension. Each scene is appropriately accompanied with music. The music used definitely helped set the mood. Personally, I purchased both soundtracks once they became available domestically.

The Japanese voice acting was also commendable and on par with everything I'd expect. The English dub, on the other hand, was a different story. Unless I tried very hard, I could barely distinguish between all the different characters (including the guys). It all sounds extremely monotonic and flat. Everyone also seemed to have an English accent. The only exception was Kohaku, who seemed far too bubbly, even for her character.

Rating: 7


Tsukihime was definitely one of my favorite short series of 2003. Weighing in at only 12 episodes, it is an easy series to pick up and watch in an afternoon. I would, however, recommend evening viewing in a dimly lit room. It adds to the atmosphere. Geneon currently holds the US distribution rights, starting with the first volume in Fall 2004. I watched the first disk as soon as I got home as was not disappointed by the release. DVD quality was good and the packaging was well done. Each disk comes with a reversible cover and keep-case featuring one female character on each side. I was slightly disappointed that Satsuki didn't make an appearance on any of the covers. The artbox for the series is well designed, with some raised textures for the letters, giving an overall "classic" feel. It is a welcome addition to my collection.

For those people out there looking for something more mature, Tsukihime definitely does the trick. It has a serious lack of super cute magical girls, transformation sequences, and pink. I also found almost all of the characters to be lovable at least one point in time, with a well defined evolution from start to finish. I would also recommend this to people who were a fan of the game but not extremely serious about it.

If you were serious about the game, don't like vampires, or can't stand watching a suspenseful anime in the dark, you should probably steer clear of this series. Fans of the game may find blasphemy everywhere while magical girl lovers may find the story too serious.

Rating: 7

Final Verdict

7.00 (above average)

Reviewed by kawaiiguy, Jul 14, 2005


  1. tareren Jul 15, 2005

    Nice review ^^ it is clear and well written.. maybe I should try watching this anime :D

  2. dElusiOn87 Jul 15, 2005

    Its good.. I like this anime alot, though there were some loose plots.

  3. kuroimisa Retired Moderator Jul 16, 2005

    I really like the way you reviewed this. You gave the background information and I really liked how you pointed out the limited wardrobe part XD At least they were wearing those clothes for 12 episodes... in Fushigi Yuugi they wore like 2 outfits spread over 52 episodes :pacman: It makes me want to see this... great job! :)

  4. marcus Jul 16, 2005

    I really like this series.. Bought all the dvds even wafter watching the fansub versions :) Wish it was longer tho .. Didn't like how things ended up tho. Nice review.. Alot of the music is good to listen to .. I bought the 2 cds moonlight memoires and moonlight archives since I loved that music used in the eps :)

  5. raptorfb Jul 17, 2005

    Great review, it goes over the series very well without saying too much and with an even mind.
    Tsukihime was a good show, I thought it was a bit short, but then again, lots of series are 12 episodes long.

  6. Azstraph Jul 19, 2005

    Good review, I would presonally given the sound an 8.5 to 9 since I love the soundtrack throughout the series, I'm guessing the english dub was the reason for 7(haven't seen this version yet). Also included the names of the other girls(Ciel, and Yumizuka, especially Arcueid). Tough Critic here XP .

    As to the comment about serious fans of the game not to watch this is so true since even the creators of the game weren't that happy with it(the main reason they are more involved with the Fate/Stay-Night anime). But this shouldn't discourage new fans to watch and wait later on when a translated version of the game comes along in the near future.

  7. heijihattori2000 Jul 23, 2005

    I ve seen the dvd version...for some reason I felt somefin was cut from especially the first dvd.....is it exactly the same in the fansub version?

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