Tonari No Kyuuketsuki-san

February 16, 2019

There are 2 types of vampires in this world. The horrible kind that wants to suck the blood out of you and turn you into their slave or hate mankind and want to destroy all humans alike. Then there is the other kind who drinks tomato juice and just wants to live peacefully with nobody bothering them whatsoever. Tonari No Kyuuketsuki-san fits a lot like the latter and you know what this means when you have a cute vampire girl and a cute human girl interacting and doing stuffs together every day (or night, rather). Cute girls doing cute things, vampire version!

Episode 1
Akari Amano is lost in the woods. Her friend was talking about some haunted house but Akari was interested in finding some doll girl thingy. But she stumbles into Sophie Twilight who admits she is a vampire and flies her to her mansion. Akari soon becomes infatuated with Sophie as she looks like a doll and wants to pet her, scaring the vampire girl. She asks if she could stay and is willing to offer her own blood. Too bad Sophie doesn’t drink from live humans. Sorry to blow your enthusiasm there. With Akari making this place like her home, she also continues to visit every night and learns more about Sophie like how she isn’t good with sunlight. Sophie finds it annoying and decides to scare her by showing her strength. Instantly Akari runs away. Sophie relishes her quiet days but soon feels lonely without her. And then Akari comes back. She has brought all the jars she can’t open! Maybe she should just go home for real. With Akari bragging to her friends, they tell her to just move in and stay with Sophie. What a great idea! Plus, this place is closer to her school. But will her parents be okay with it? They agree! They are fascinated with this vampire girl. Maybe Akari got such annoying habits from her parents… As Akari tries to cook and accidentally cuts her finger, Sophie sucks on it. It gives Akari an idea to cut off more… Don’t do it! When Sophie’s blood is running low, Akari wonders if she is going to hunt humans. Well, she orders her blood online! They sell that online?! Akari tries to be useful around the mansion to get Sophie to accept her but comes off as annoying. However Sophie allows her to stay seeing it would be less lonely in this big space. Plus, her being useless, Sophie never had anything useful for her in the first place (is this an insult?). Akari takes this as Sophie accepting her love and is ready to marry her! Oh Sophie, you’re going to regret your decisions right now. Akari learns about Sophie attending school once but with so many rules and restrictions, she gave up after 3 days. Wait. So everyone knows and accepts a vampire?!

Episode 2
Sophie shows Akari her book collection. Her hobby is collecting books with signatures. Sophie accidentally reveals she is 360 years old as she has books from famous authors of the past and it brings back memories (mostly dreaded ones) when she go get their signature. And because there is another book signing event, this time Akari accompanies her. To prevent the sunlight from turning her into ash, Sophie wears thick capes and uses a parasol but it is still uncomfortable. But don’t worry. Akari is here to help her out in any way. But the short trip turns into a detour as Sophie has to avoid churches, garlic shops and the likes. When the wind blows her parasol away, Akari quickly uses her jacket to cover her. Phew. Safe. Akari is so relieved that she starts crying. Eventually Sophie manages to get her signed book. Akari wonders if she’ll remember this day as being helpful but Sophie will mostly remember it as Akari having a weird suspicious smile. Hinata Natsuki, Akari’s friend is worried that she is living with a stranger and wants to visit. Okay. Sophie is even shocked that Akari has friends! At first Hinata finds everything normal until she realizes Sophie is a vampire. Not panicking yet but she worries if Akari is alright living under the same roof as a blood sucker. Then they watch horror movies. Ironically Akari isn’t scared but Sophie is! Naturally Hinata too. So could this mean they could really be pals? When Hinata mentions about rumours of a floating girl around, it soon dawned to them it is Sophie although she herself is unaware of it. When it’s time for the human girls to go to bed, Sophie still reeling from the horror movie decides to join them. It’s not her bedtime. The scariest place in the mansion has got to be Akari’s room. Look at all the dolls she brought over! Ultimately, Hinata is glad Sophie is Akari’s friend as she seems happier. Sophie might be weird, but she’s a nice person. Hinata goes on to rant how much she adores Akari. Oh no, another nut brewing… With Hinata and Sophie now friends, looks like she gets the green light to visit again.

Episode 3
Hinata’s parents are away for a trip so she invites Akari and Sophie to visit her. Such an achievement for Sophie to step in a house of a friend. Hinata introduces Sophie to her dog, Mikan but it starts growling at her. Dogs don’t like vampires? As they talk about their families, Akari imagines Sophie’s family to be super cute. Unfortunately Sophie says she did have a family when she was human but none since she turned into a vampire. There is also a family who turned the rest of her family members into vampires. Oh look, they just posted on their social media page a few days ago just celebrating the sister’s 421st birthday! Akari gets this idea to play family and wants to be Sophie’s mom. This has Hinata overthinking that means Akari is married to somebody and will not allow it! I guess Hinata is naturally the dad then. They decide to play sisters and the humans love the vampire to be their little sister. And then Akari tries to be Sophie’s cat? All this family talk has Sophie feeling fun to be part of a family. Akari promises never to make her lonely and Hinata will always welcome her here. Sophie realizes Akari forgot her lunch. School doesn’t have pleasant memories of her but she still braves the sunlight to deliver the lunch. Everyone at first gets afraid thinking she is some sort of assassin because of her dark cloak but upon realizing she is Akari’s friend, they are relieved. So they think Akari’s friends are all kooky? Akari introduces to her other friends, Yuu Aoki and Sakuya Kurai. They are awed that she is a vampire. So cute, who is going to get scared, right? Yeah, does Sophie need to lie about her age? Like shaving 20 years off? Yeah, who could tell? Yamada then wants Sophie to stand in for her as she intends to skip class and go back to check on her sick sister. She thinks they look the same. Obviously not. And as expected, the teacher can tell Sophie is not Yamada but decides to play along since Sophie is playing poker face. After school, Sakuya tries to scare Sophie with ghost stories and enjoys it! As they study, the international history brings some memories back for Sophie. Like where she was at France and ‘witnessed’ the beheading of Marie Antoinette. Amazing, huh? When they go home, they stop by a bookstore since Sophie feels this youths do this. Sophie realizes today’s school outing is not so bad. Akari says because she is with her.

Episode 4
Akari stumbles into another vampire girl from America, Ellie who is on her way to visit Sophie. However Sophie isn’t pleased to see her although the last they saw each other 100 years ago. That’s because Ellie always drags her into her shenanigans and Sophie bears the brunt of it all. Later Ellie uses up all of Sophie’s blood just to have a blood bath. It freaked out Akari. Now with no blood food, Ellie guns for Sophie’s neck. Thankfully Akari stops her. Or not. Because she’ll come back with a camera! Slowpoke Akari returns and the meal is already over. Ellie tries to target Akari next but is told her blood is really bad. Better not regret it. Ellie reveals that she overslept for 100 years after getting tired from playing. By the time she woke up, it’s already the modern era. After Sophie returns from an errand, she thought Ellie has gone. Peace and quiet back. Too bad Ellie is waiting in her bed trying to seduce her. Sophie quickly Google for the crematorium! Since this is Ellie’s first time in the modern world, Sophie introduces her to many modern conveniences we take for granted like colour TV and best of all, the computer and internet. But since Ellie is such a noob and almost wrecks her laptop, it’s a good thing both vampire girls agree to stay away from it. Later Ellie learns Akari is Sophie’s friend and not a slave or emergency food supply she thought out to be. This has Ellie being cautious as she reminds them they are different beings, hated by humans. Hence the idea of befriending one is ridiculous. Sophie says times have changed but Ellie tries to threaten Akari to break them up. Akari misinterprets Ellie’s attack as a sexual one and expects it! It’s scaring Ellie instead. Because Akari cannot imagine Sophie’s friends being bad, Ellie gives in and allows this friendship. For now. Ellie will return and visit again. Sophie warns due to her erratic behaviour, it will be decades from now. Akari is disheartened as she’ll be a grandma by then. But that won’t happen as Ellie has moved into the neighbourhood. Time to set up the crucifixes…

Episode 5
Ellie is caught red handed emptying the fridge of all the blood. Okay. No biggie. She’ll go out to hunt! Hence Sophie introduces her to online shopping. No fun, can’t choose your target. That’s the way it’s done today. With Hinata coming over for a sleepover, it is the first time she meets Ellie. However Hinata mistakes Ellie to be younger than Sophie (Ellie is over 450 years old) and this causes her to snap as she fondles her boobs?! It descends into a childish argument with Hinata running away and not wanting to sleepover. So I guess we have to go look for her. Don’t want a young girl walking in the dark. Something may assault her and it won’t be vampires! Anyway, Ellie explains why she hates being a child because it is he dream to grow up mature into a beautiful lady. Now she’s stuck in this loli body. At the same time, Hinata rues of having such mature body at a young age as all the guys can’t keep their eyes of her. Just the right moment for Hinata to fall down the stairs and Ellie to catch her. They reconcile and respect each other’s body. The sleepover continues. Late that night, Hinata hears some sounds from the kitchen and gets the shock of her life to see Ellie putting blood all over her face (for beauty purposes – old fashion thinking, maybe). Sophie is tired out just trying to teach Ellie how to use modern appliances. After hearing her neighbour how she overbought lots of food for her family coming over, Sophie thinks cooking a lot for humans would make them happy. Hence on the day Akari left for a doll exhibition, Sophie hatches a plan to surprise her with her cooking. Of course she gets help from Hinata. Sophie tries to think outside the box but all ended up in disaster. I mean, she thought of putting nails in soup because you need the iron, right?! Something got lost in translation… Finally they follow the normal instructions to make curry rice. The final hurdle is most taxing because of the garlic! Don’t worry. Sophie puts on a hazmat suit! Curry rice finished! But Sophie is disappointed it looks so normal?! Better than disastrous, right? Of course Akari comes home to be thrilled with Sophie’s cooking. But Sophie can’t eat near her. The garlic. Yeah, great at keeping Ellie away too.

Episode 6
Sophie was half asleep when Akari called her asking for permission for Sakuya to come over and interview her (in regards to this episode’s title, sorry, no Tom Cruise cameo here). So don’t be surprise when you wake up only to see Sakuya covering her while she is asleep! Apparently Sakuya is doing this since she is part of the occult club. Sophie tries to get dressed for the occasion but dresses like vampires in the movies. Sakuya asks a few questions like why vampires where black (doesn’t look obvious with blood stains but shouldn’t it be red then?) and if the rivalries with werewolves exist (they’re just superstitions!). Ellie comes in because has a problem with her new laptop. Yeah, she chopped it since it wasn’t working. It’s beyond repair. Now she wants to borrow Ellie’s laptop… No way! Ellie and Sakuya meet. Although Sakuya akin her to a child, Ellie doesn’t get mad since she is the same petite size and is flat. Ellie teases of wanting to bite Sakuya’s neck and the latter excitedly anticipates it until Sophie warns her bite is painful. Uhm, won’t you turn into a vampire with a bite? Shouldn’t that be of concern? Sophie watched anime up till so late (that’s noon for vampire standards) and before she is about to turn in, Ellie wants to go out to buy clothes! At this time of day?! Well, shops don’t open at night. Good thing Akari is going to meet up with Hinata. Too bad the vampire girls are like in torture just trekking through the bright sunny day. It’s a miracle they didn’t die. On the train as they rest, this must be a touchy issue if they are qualified to sit on the reserved seats for senior citizens! As the shopping begins, it seems all of them pick the same clothes they often wear when they’re supposed to pick something that gives them a different look. So they decide to shop for each other’s clothes instead. I’m sure Ellie isn’t amused with Hinata’s thoughts of having her dressed as a kid. Hinata’s clothes look so feminine that she herself is amazed she looks like a girl! WTF?! Finally a nice white dress on Sophie that really makes her look cute. Is this Akari’s plan to take her original black clothes and vacuum seal it? All this shopping makes them hungry. Oh Ellie, all those young girls at the food court aren’t available…

Episode 7
Beach episode! But how the f*ck did Sophie end up here?! Sure, she did say she never seen a beach before but could she Google it? The other part to blame for this ‘harassment’ is Akari who packed her in her bag while she was sleeping. So, uhm, surprise? Ellie was smart to decline this as she enjoys her ‘beach’ in her own living room. Back home, Akari thought of doing summer things with them but the thought of kimodameshi… I think even vampires are afraid of ghosts. As a vampire, they don’t have body temperature like human and hence it doesn’t matter if they wear long or short sleeve. Akari takes this chance to rub herself on her cool skin. Stop it. You’re making it unbearably hot. Akari gets an idea to visit the fireworks festival. She starts making their yukata. Akari might have discovered Sophie’s ‘weakness’ while she is painting her toenails as she gets ticklish. Hinata thought she isn’t feminine enough to wear a yukata but if Akari has her way… At the festival, I can understand Ellie not understanding the culture but Sophie? How long has she been living here? She thought there are shaved ice that serves blood and goldfish scooping is eating goldfish on rice?! Are you sure you have even used the internet? Honestly, you never came to such festival before Akari, eh? During the fireworks, Ellie gets excited and starts flying. I’m sure everyone saw a vampire spectacle too. On the way back, Akari wants them to do this every year. Surprisingly Hinata reacts to that because this means Akari won’t get a boyfriend and Akari can be by her side. Forever. Well, if you become a vampire, forever is likely. Because Sophie has never seen a morning glory bloom (only in day time), Akari gives her a bookmark with one. Too bad she reads e-book. Sophie finds herself in another predicament. How the f*ck did she find herself trapped underneath a tree and it’s day time. Apparently she got curious to count all the seeds in a sunflower. Yeah, she counted them to be over a thousand! Happy? Now she realizes she has brought nothing with her except this 500 Yen. What can she do with it? Luckily Akari is here. She visited her mansion and got worried because she wasn’t in and started looking for her. Akari is going to get her mantle and umbrella but Sophie wants her to stay with her until they can walk home in the evening.

Episode 8
It’s that time of season again. Yup, the rush to finish your summer homework. Too bad Akari and Hinata are having a hard time focusing and getting distracted. Even more so when Ellie is here to play. So they go shopping, cook a nice dinner and when they’re all revved up and ready to continue, a short while into it, they’re back to being lethargic. Homework sucks… Thankfully they manage to do so and are rewarded with nice cool watermelon treats and playing sparklers. But reality soon hits them. They don’t want summer vacation to end! Too bad they have to go to school tomorrow and Sophie is most relieved since Akari won’t be bugging her taking naps in her coffin! When it’s time to go to bed, the quartet have a hard time finding the right combo to sleep with each other. Sophie finds it perfect lying in between the tight space of the bed and wall… When night falls, the quartet make their way to Akihabara. It’s Ellie’s first time so there is a section in this manga shop that is age restricted if you want to browse through those erotic works. Don’t worry. They’re like over hundreds of years old, right? Too bad the store clerk kicks them out thinking they’re young girls. Discrimination! After that they hit the crane game and then the maid café. Sophie feels embarrassed doing that moe-moe spell on your food. They overhear how a maid says she is always 17 years old (as part of the act to otaku customers) so they think she is one of their kind. Back home, Akari has created a maid dress for Sophie so she could feel she’s at Akihabara at home. Too bad she didn’t think far enough because if that is the case, doesn’t this defeats the purpose of going back there again?

Episode 9
A bug bumps into Ellie and she almost died! Is this how weak vampires are in daylight? But when they reach Akari’s school for the cultural festival, they are all revived. They see Hinata who brings them to Akari’s doll exhibition. Why does it look like a haunted house? Bad lighting on purpose or what? When Sophie rests, others start thinking she is a doll and get shocked when she starts moving! Why does everyone else have this haunted house vibe? From Sakuya’s ghost story telling (I think it’s her bad singing) to Yuu’s horror journal, eventually Hinata is forced to enter a haunted house with Ellie with the latter only finds it all comforting. Luckily for the rest of the day they had a swell time. On the way back, they see a strange girl outside the mansion when she suddenly collapses. No worries. Just rumbling of her stomach. They take her in and treat her to some food. Then she reveals she is a rookie vampire hunter and heard there is a vampire in the neighbourhood! Oh dear. Sophie better stop posting on social media from now on. They try to pretend not to know anything and anybody could see through their bad acting except for this vampire hunter. All okay. Naturally you want her out but to stem suspicions, Sophie lets her stay here for the night and will just need to pretend to be human until morning. The vampire hunter explains her goal to exterminate vampires because her great-great-great-great grandpa was turned into one. Yeah, he became one as an old man and his body is aching all over. So killing all vampires can release the curse? Then Ellie comes in and almost ruins it. She also plays along but the vampire hunter gets more suspicious when the vampires try to do human-like things but fail big time. I guess the foreigner excuse comes in handy. Later that night, the vampire hunter stumbles into Sophie’s room and sees her coffin. Oh no! Actually this is an elaborate cover for her dakimakura. Phew. Next morning as she leaves, the vampire hunter drops something but Sophie picks it up and gives her back. Unknowingly her hand touches the sunlight and for that moment she saw it turn to ash. However realizing that these vampires are good and not as terrifying as she imagined, she leaves them in peace. Better than in pieces, right? Haha! And we are rewarded seeing the quartet bathing together but all of them become lazy after experiencing the goodness of the hotspring.

Episode 10
Oh no! Akari is a vampire! Sophie in shock! Gotcha! Just a Halloween costume! Akari would love to make Sophie’s Halloween costume but she rather buy it online. The friends gather for a Halloween party. Sophie the witch, Yuu and Sakuya the zombies, Hinata the werewolf and Ellie the super sexy succubus! Is this even legal?! I suppose many of them would prefer tricks to treat. Never seen anybody so eager to go buy candies… Then they have really weird Halloween food. Eyeballs, body parts… Probably just bread but they can eat all that without flinching? As Christmas is approaching, the gang plan their programme for that day. They like the idea of exchanging gifts and some of them already starting to have fantasies if they receive from the ones they like. Akari wanted to invite Yuu and Sakuya too but after hearing how Yuu would be alone during Christmas since everybody else is away and only have Sakuya for company, looks like Hinata took a hint and better leave them alone. So the rest decorate the place and make Christmas food. During the present exchange, Akari and Sophie got each other’s present, breaking Hinata’s heart. She got Ellie’s instead. Not too happy? It’s a lipstick and since Akari commented how pretty she looks, she totally loves it. All go outside when it starts snowing. Thankfully the vampire girls aren’t affected by the cold hence not die of its exposure. Akari feels bad because the mitten present she got for her felt useless. Don’t worry, she still wears them. On New Year’s Eve, they take out the kotatsu. Time to laze around. Sophie is puzzled since no soba is served as it is done traditionally in Japan. That’s because Akari is allergic to soba and fries are substituted instead. They wait until midnight to celebrate the New Year but looks like they can’t keep their promise to stay awake to watch the sunrise. Luckily Akari and Hinata manage to catch it in time. So great that the vampire girls even don’t mind catching it even if they are slowly turning into ash! I guess a video will do if they want to see the rest.

Episode 11
A loud crash in the middle of the night. It seems Sophie is trying to put away all the junk in her collection room that has accumulated over the, uhm, centuries? Hinata is called to help and she thought it would be easy pie until she sees how much junk the room is filled. Plus, Ellie isn’t helping and just reading manga. This is going to take some time as the girls reminisce old technology like Gameboy and even a pager. You people know what’s a pager, right? Also, Sophie is distressing whether to throw away other useless junk or not. The room is finally cleaned. There are ribbons Ellie gave to Sophie. Time to throw them away?! To thank them for their help, Ellie cooks for them. But since they are worried, it’s safer to just order. They order pizza and since Sophie is taken in with the pizza box, will the hoarding begin again? Selling all those stuffs earned Sophie some money. But she can’t decide what to buy. Later Sophie thinks Akari is acting strange. But she’s always acting strange! Turns out Akari is sick. Not in the head, but physically. Sophie starts panicking. And since the vampires don’t know anything on how to cure a cold (have they even tried looking on the internet?), looks like they call Hinata. Instantly this girl slams the phone and rushes down. Mama is here. Akari is taken care of but Sophie is still panicking thinking she is beyond saving if she refuses to go to the hospital. Sophie gets tricked as Akari pulls her in to hug her. So cool and refreshing. With Ellie joining in, Akari is living her fantasy of being sandwiched by 2 cute vampires. I think Hinata is trying to join in… Next day, Akari is much better but since she wants to be taken care of a little longer, she bluffs she isn’t getting any better. Too bad Sophie thinks she is really dying! Better stop the lies. That night as Akari sleeps, the vampire girls think it is a pity humans don’t sleep in a confined space. So they think by putting a styrofoam board will make her sleep better? Yeah, Akari is having nightmares…

Episode 12
Sophie with new short haircut! Actually, she took out the trash and the sun burnt her long hair! What’s this about the local laws forbidding to take out one’s trash at night?! So Akari forbids her to take out the trash and will do it for her? Later as Sophie tries to order blood online, looks like the service will be down for a few days! Horror! Then Ellie comes by asking if she has stock because she too has run out of blood. Double horror! Time for Akari to be useful. Too bad they ignore her and think of sucking humans’ blood in town but with their consent. I guess that failed. With the hunger pangs, Ellie is looking at Akari’s neck. Looking good… Sophie has her wear a scarf. To distract this hunger, they watch an action movie. Blood everywhere! Changing it to cute girls doing cute things genre, aren’t the girls cute enough as meal? Akari soon falls into depression that they rather stay hungry than drink her blood. Yeah, it’s that friendship reason again why they don’t want to. Yup, we care about you. A few days later, the blood delivery is back to normal and the vampire girls have their fill. When Sophie goes for a night flight, she forgot her shoes and when she returns home, Akari too want to go. At the school rooftop admiring the city lights, the teacher almost caught them but they flew away. Hence some haunting legend was born after this… Yuu and Sakuya are looking for some legendary floating girl. To their disappointment it’s just Sophie. Then they meet Hinata walking her dog. Looks like Mikan still isn’t receptive of the vampire. Then they make their way to the woods, the place where they first met. Too bad it’s dark and creepy instead of that wonderland delusion in Akari’s head. For a short while, Akari got distracted and then separated. Lost in the darkness, it isn’t too long before Sophie finds her. Just like how the first time they met. And they reintroduce and replay that exact scene again before continuing their walk. Don’t walk too long at night. Akari has school tomorrow, you know.

I Heart <3 Vampires
And so the heart-warming story of a human girl and her vampire friend continues. But I hope this series doesn’t make you want to go out and do some vampire hunting on your own. No, not the kind that turns you into some Van Helsing wannabe and go out there to kill every vampire. It would be very troublesome if you’re going to kidnap a cute vampire girl and keep her as your pet! The irony of your ‘pet’ outliving you…

There isn’t so much of a plot in this series and it is possibly close to non-existent as every episode just sees the daily life interactions between the human girls and the vampire girls. There’s nothing more to it. Some funny moments arise because of their odd fetish (like Akari’s maniacal ways to cuddle Sophie, hence giving rise to her perverted rape face) and some misunderstood conceptions of how modern technology works (like Ellie who has a lot to catch up to now that she is living in the 21st century). Humans and vampires have so much to learn about each other… There is no plot here that would shake things up and even that vampire hunter episode is so mild that Akari’s illness seems to look like a tenser drama. Really.

So I am left to guess if vampires in this world are actually accepted as docile beings. They aren’t creatures that exist in secrecy as we see them posting on social media as well as Sophie herself has an unfortunate experience as a first timer at school and even then it is safe to say everybody knows of her identity. I mean, if they have online blood sales and delivery, I bet the mosquitoes aren’t the ones ordering it. A lot of characters don’t seem to be alarmed with the fact that a vampire is living in their neighbourhood. Not sure if they know or they just don’t care because vampires here don’t kill people. Even the vampire hunter girl’s reason to kill vampires stems from the fact it isn’t because vampires killed any family members of her. Just some bodily annoyance, that’s all. So if vampires exist in this world and nobody bats an eyelid (pun intended), what about werewolves and zombies? Do they exist here too? Or just solely vampires? I guess unicorns will always remain as mythical creatures. Sophie did say werewolves were superstitions but is that her belief or a general fact? After all, vampires and werewolves are natural enemies so it is natural Sophie doesn’t want to acknowledge their existence.

There are some other mind boggling questions that I want to ask to. It would never have occurred to me had not Sophie tried to clean out her archives. Because this has me to ponder of how long her collections will last. Assuming vampires are the only eternal beings in this world, then everything else is perishable. This means a huge number of collections, especially Sophie’s books would have been in dilapidated conditions and about to break apart. I wonder how she manages her archives and if she has got space for them all. Sure, she is only 300 over years old but from the looks of it, she has amassed quite a number of collections that the museums and library would be at envy to have.

The vampires in this world seem to suffer from all the cliché weaknesses that Hollywood told us. From sunlight to garlic and holy water, it makes Sophie look more like a weakling. Too bad I didn’t see her transform into a real bat and the most I see is with bat-like wings. If that is the case, I wonder how Sophie manages to keep herself so clean and proper if she cannot see herself in the mirror! This is before she met Akari, you know. I don’t see other familiar assistants around so it is indeed mind boggling. Unless you tell me our vampires here can see their reflection. Of course not as indicated by Sophie. Yeah, does Sophie even know how she looks like? Somebody please be consistent with the vampire clichés already?!

Since vampires can only die and be dissolved by direct exposure to sunlight, I have a question that if Sophie stands and finally gets fully dissolved by the sun’s rays, then when it is night fall, will she resurrect fully to her vampire self? You see, this anime tells us that they can recover or regenerate as long as they go back into darkness. That is why vampires stay the same. Too bad if you’re stuck with a bad hair day when you become one. And since the dissolving takes time, by the time it is night, does this mean Sophie will be truly be back alive? Oh Sophie, you are indeed an immortal if that is the case. Maybe somebody will try to drive a stake to her heart or poison her food with garlic…

Character wise, I guess if you’re not really picky or bored with this cute girls doing cute things genre, they’re pretty cute and likeable in their own ways. Possible subtle cute girls lesbianism because I guess with hardcore ones like Citrus and Yagate Kimi Ni Naru, this one looks like being masked behind an innocent friendship, which I guess is pretty okay with everyone. So yeah, doll lover Akari loves Sophie only because she is so cute like a doll and a plus point is that she doesn’t age, meaning she won’t become a hagged doll forever. And then Sophie is like annoyed and scared but at the same time puts up with all of this because it’s like her first normal friend in, uhm, her life? Excluding Ellie, that’s like her lifetime friend. Akari may be annoying but for an immortal, it gives meaning to her existence. For better or worse. It’s hard to say if Sophie would have preferred the quiet life and just hooking up to her internet. She might enjoy that too but would it be as much as hanging out with a friend no matter how annoying? That’s right. Even vampires are people too. In this case, were people. They have feelings too despite not having body temperature and resistant to illnesses. It’s always that human factor that ramps up the friendship and bonding. Can’t have such intimate relationship with your laptop, can you?

It remains to be seen if this friendship will last into the long future because if that is going to happen, Akari and Hinata have to be turned into vampires. But don’t wait until they are grandmas to turn them so. Because boy, the plot is going to be damn interesting and possibly tear jerking when it comes to a point that Sophie considers Akari her best friend so much so she can’t part with her and the only solution is to turn her into a vampire. Then literally BFF! Otherwise, let Akari grow old and die while Sophie continues to find a new cute young girl as her new friend. I wonder what Akari will think of that. Yeah, that would be interesting to see.

There seems to be this running joke and dilemma about Sophie being 360 years old. She is now forever stuck in this loli body and no human in their right mind will ever think she is of legal age. Heck, she is possibly the oldest around! By a few generations! So while this legally entitles her to a lot of stuffs, at the same time she is also age conscious because it makes her look old. Can’t argue that old is old. Accept your age and age gracefully. Oh wait. She can’t. I don’t think shaving off a few decades is going to do her any good. It’s not like she is finding a prospect or suitor, is she?

Then you have Hinata acting as Akari’s mom and big sister because I guess Akari’s own mom and dad are busy doing their own things. If they are fine with her staying at a vampire’s place, it says a lot about them. Like as though they’ve gotten rid some sort of burden. But that’s just my take. So my guess is that Hinata is now filling that void and in hopes Akari would notice her affection. Yeah, one-sided unrequited love is so unfair. Hinata -> Akari -> Sophie. And where does Ellie fit in all this? Any cute and nice girls would do. I am waiting for the day where Ellie would just bite Akari and turn her into a vampire. Then Sophie will forever be haunted. Heh. So for now she is safe because of the presumption of Akari’s blood tastes bad. Ellie believes it without even thinking further? I mean, if Sophie knows Akari’s blood is bad, that means she would have drank it and that further means Akari is now a vampire. Since she is not, I think somebody is lying… Can’t Akari just drip her blood in small cup and let them taste? Or will that somehow magically turn her into a vampire too? Last and not least the Yuu and Sakuya best-friends-cum-other-potential-lesbian-couple but to a lesser extent. The series could also be done without them but I think to prevent us from thinking these 4 losers girls only have themselves as company, Yuu and Sakuya show that they also have other friends outside the circle who accept the vampire ladies.

Art and animation are drawn to a very cute and kawaii perspective. With everything so bright and colourful, that is why I fear that some people may get the wrong ideas that vampire lolis are cute enough to be your friends that they forget the other cliché views of scary vampires (see the loli vampire twins in the recent Tenrou: Sirius The Jaeger for reference). Sure, Shinobu of the Monogatari series is a cute loli vampire too but considering the genre of that anime, it’s not all happy peaceful sunshine as enjoyed by Sophie here. Speaking about vampires dissolving when being exposed to sunlight, how come Sophie and Ellie seem like they are in a slow process of Thanos’ snap?

I keep feeling that Akari looks like Kiniro Mosaic’s Shinobu. With their similar haircut and similar passion for their perversion. It’s no wonder why I keep seeing shades of the latter in her. (Shinobu is obsessed with blondes and certain blonde named Alice. Like how Akari is obsessed with dolls and a certain doll-like vampire named Sophie). I also see Slow Start’s Eiko in Hinata. Both are tall girls and have a crush on a certain someone who is hard to reach. This anime is jointly produced by Studio Gokumi and Axsiz who have done a few other anime series together like Seiren, Ramen Daisuki Koizumi-san and Koukaku No Pandora.

Didn’t recognize anyone in the voice acting department. But everyone plays their part to make the sound characters (annoyingly) cute. So squeal your heart out visually and aurally. The casts are Miyu Tomita as Sophie (Gabriel in Gabriel Dropout), Yuu Sasahara as Akari (Li Xuemei in Marchen Madchen), Lynn as Hinata (titular character in Fukka), Azumi Waki as Ellie (Maika in Blend S), Aya Uchida as Yuu (Kotori in Love Live) and Rina Hidaka as Sakuya (Ririchiyo in Inu X Boku Secret Service). More cuteness galore in the opening theme with the main quartet singing Kyuutie Ladies. I guess that’s a cute way of playing with the words ‘cute’ and ‘kyuuketsuki’ (vampire). The same quartet sing the ending theme, Happy Strange Friends and I prefer this song a lot more with its light-hearted bouncy sunshine feel (a bit of Broadway too). There are also a few BGMs that have that jazzy feel. Kinda reminds me of that main Yakitate! Japan theme.

Overall, this series is relaxing and funny because of all the cute things they spam us. Ironically this series has quite a bit of cutie sunshine but it doesn’t get dissolved… I guess it has been quite a long time since we have had a cute vampire series (remember Karin, anyone?) because so many vampire themed animes are like so gory, violent and bloody (Hellsing, Owari No Seraph, Blood+). Others are too over the top brooding dramatic (Vampire Knight), too sexy (Rosario To Vampire) and too overrated (Kizumonogatari, Shiki and yes, Kekkai Sensen too). Not sure if they are trying to normalize the supernatural that they are our friends and not our enemies (Demi-chan Wa Kataritai, Centaur No Nayami and to a certain extent Monster Musume No Iru Nichijou) but with vampire lolis like Sophie around, you bet you don’t have to be afraid of vampires sucking your blood. Thank goodness I’m a middle aged guy so they’ll stay clearly away from me!