Sep 18, 2013
blazeMX (All reviews)
Well, so it’s come down to this… “Rosario + Vampire” is an anime show directed by Takayuki Inagaki about, uh, well, gratuitous panty shots and full-blown harem mayhem. The story is straight-forward enough to actually make sense too: Tsukune Aono is your typical high school protagonist who plays the nice guy role way too well. One day, while heading to his mysterious new high school in the middle of what appears to be a dead forest/graveyard, he is run over on a bicycle by Moka Akashiya, a classmate of his. Immediately, these two seem to hit it off, until Tsukune discovers that Moka is actually a vampire and the high school he’s attending consists of nightmarish monsters. Eventually, Tsukune is forced to keep his human identity a secret for fear of his own life, while also attracting the attention of a group of girls all lining up to have sex with him, typical of your harem/ecchi show.

I just want to make this known: “Rosario + Vampire” is a terrible show. In fact, so terrible that I actually found myself really enjoying it at times. There seems to be a very basic formula to each episode too: Tsukune, being the dumbass he is, manages to get involved in some life-threatening conflict with a dangerous student or teacher, and Moka is forced to change into her “badass” vampire form to save the day while the narrator, being a bat with the most annoying voice in anime history, inexplicably totals up the running time each battle took… for reasons I have yet to know… It’s formulaic, yes, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t have a ton of fun with it. There’s a cheesy undertone throughout that makes it oddly entertaining, and while the nudity is flaunted around this show like clothing is illegal, it adds a kind of quirky vibe to the characters themselves. I shouldn’t go too into detail with the other characters apart from our two protagonists because, well, they’re cardboard cut-outs from other harem anime and are too uninspired to really give a damn.

However, “Rosario + Vampire” has a secret power: it is so facepalm-worthy, that at a point, your brain adjusts to the crude, dry humor and eventually you find yourself laughing a lot. The comedy in this show is hilarious when it wants to be, especially an episode when Tsukune is followed home by the stalking group of girls over summer break, and is introduced to their mother, who witnesses them in *ahem* compromising situations that leads her to believe her son is a sex fiend. It’s actually one of the funniest episodes I’ve watched since that exam episode in “Angel Beats!”. I feel like I shouldn’t dismiss the strengths of the show either, because the last few episodes of the first season are legitimately great, as well as a bulk of episodes in the second season.

As much as I enjoyed most of it, there’s just also too much wrong with “Rosario + Vampire” to fully recommend it. While it does have it’s fair share of comedic genius and suspenseful moments, these are too rare in the show to really call it a saving grace. The chemistry between the “so inoffensive, it hurts” Tsukune and “Lucy from Elfen Lied 2.0” Moka is actually pretty good too, and provides an ongoing gag that never gets tired. But overall, it’s decent fun at best. If you just want to take a break from a serious anime, switch off your brain and let this soak in. Otherwise, watch “Love Hina” if you want great harem…