Vampire in the Garden – Fleeting Paradise?

What if paradise could last forever?

I love it when I randomly discover new anime that catches my eye with the trailer and while I was waiting on my flight to return home, I found this gem because some divine deity thought that it would be a good laugh to not allow me to download any episodes of Bakamonogatari. So after finally deciding to practice my inner Frozen and simply let it go, I opened Netflix and there it was because it knew what I was going through.

I became a big Studio Wit fan thanks to The Ancient Magus Bride and Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress (And yes, I know bout Attack on Titan) so when their logo flashed in the beginning, I will not admit to squealing like a kid in a candy store. The trailer simply pulled me in. Do I love the war-torn post-apocalyptic world? I melt in heat for it. Aristocratic setting with that old quasi victorian air? Yes, please! And a beautiful score from Yoshihiro Ike who I just adore for the music in Rage of Bahumet? Say no more!

The Premise

Though we aren’t quite sure when or why it happened, mankind appears to be pushed to the brink after losing to the vampires in a war to determine the dominant species. The things that humans once used to take pleasure in such as dance, music, and art has been given up and deemed taboo since the vampires as adopted and virtually taken such joys as their own.

We pick up this story at the last remaining stronghold for the humans; a fortress equipped with lights and ready to retake their spot as the world’s most powerful species. Momo, the daughter of the active general of the military appears to have soft spot for music running into Fine, the queen of the vampires who has grown tired of the war between the two races and wants something more. The two of them find themselves desperately searching for a way out of their oppressive life and through their chance encounter, they may be able to find such a paradise.

My Thoughts

Studio Wit doesn’t disappoint here but for a mere six episodes, I wish they would have had more time and/or budget to do more. It manages to captivate you and keep you enthralled during the ride but once it’s over and you reflect, it left me wanting more and I am torn on whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing.

Can we just sit in this world for a while longer? The problem that I always have with series like this is that we don’t get to spend enough time simply experiencing the culture of the world which make me give it high praise because I was hooked! I wanted to know the cause of the human relinquishing literature, art, and music to the vampires! I mean, we could come to our own conclusions and one might argue it is left up to our imagination but I wanna know! I wanted to know more about vampires and their overall society. Yes, we get to see the high nobility briefly but what about their politics? Why was it so important for Fine to return?

As a writer myself who loves worldbuilding, the lack thereof ignites a fire of questions, and even though this story is more self-contained and character-driven, following our two leads at the hip, I enjoyed what was offered.

However, where this show shines is in the interaction between Momo and Fine. Whenever these two are on screen together, magic is in the air. Their chemistry is infectious and their relationship is very relatable. They make you route for them over the course of the series because you, like them, want to know if it is possible for them to co-exist in harmony. And if anyone can do that, you believe that they can.

It is also through them that you see why the world would never be able to function in the way they envision. Not as everyone currently are. You sense the bitter undertones of attempts that have failed. People who have given up and those who flame for change were snuffed out in one way or another.

Outside our two lovely ladies, the two characters that stood out to me were definitely Kubo and Allegro. The two of them were breath of fresh air albeit a bit formulaic. I was drawn to the two of them, connecting with them on a deeper level because I understood their inner turmoil and the resolve they carried to accomplish their goals.

I can honestly say that you can’t go wrong watching this show dubbed or subbed. I loved the English cast for this show and I believe they really hold their own against their Japanese counterparts. I just about cooed audibly whenever I heard Fine’s voice as it was something tragically beautiful about it. Confident, but at the same time worn and tired and I believe that Larissa Gallagher did a fine job. (Don’t hurt me…)

Should You Watch?

Without a doubt, I believe that is something here to enjoy for everyone. You might end up like me, wanting more and having no way to get more but one can argue that is a job well down on their part. It has a charming way of leading you through the episodes, following these two women who simply want to be left alone to enjoy their lives the way they wanted even as the world at large does everything in its power to deter them.

But for me, there is not enough meat here to suffice a good story. Momo and Fine’s journey is beautiful in a pocket but there is so much untapped potential just out of reach that it leaves me longing. Just like the paradise that they were searching for.

However, this short but bittersweet anime deserves a chance to win you over.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Lynn says:

    I’ve not even heard of this one and it ticks all my boxes. Also, I love Kabaneri too. Been meaning to rewatch that so now I have two shows to watch. Thanks

    1. I can’t wait to hear what you think of it because I really like what was given but wish they gave us more episodes.

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