Trinity Blood

April 14, 2007

Even though I have known the anime Trinity Blood previously, at that time I had never any intention of watching it. But because since it is the first anime to be shown locally in original Japanese audio and Malay subtitles, I decided to give it a try. Well, I guess I was right about not wanting to watch it in the first place. But if I haven’t watch it, I wouldn’t know, would I?
 
One main reason why I initially didn’t want to watch it was because it’s that usual human vs vampire storyline. Which means, 24 episodes of dark horror supernatural drama and such. Okay, maybe it’s not so much the horror, but since there’re vampires here, it can’t be romantic comedy genre, right? Because so, probably that’s why the local tv decide to air the series at around midnight.
 
And as usual, the setting is during the post-apocalyptic world in the distant future (ironically the town and cities seemed like during Victorian times or anything during that era) whereby 2 races are constantly at feud. Namely the humans AKA Terrans and the vampires AKA Methuselah. Currently, there’s an uneasy peace between them and of course, some really have that hope of co-existing together and others who just want to wipe each other out.
 
Before I proceed, I’d like to mention that some of the name of the certain characters can be quite hard to pronounce and have that ‘old European’ feel. Yeah, reminds me like in Zero No Tsukaima’s case. Tongue twisting. And those high ranking characters have second titles such as Duke, Duchess, Earl or Count of some old European or Middle East kingdom like Tigris, Florence, Milan, Moldova, Memphis, Luxor or Kiev. But since I got confused trying to remember them, I’ll just leave it there. In addition, some of the character’s names have a meaning in a different language to their role in the series. So you need to be widely read and be knowledgeable. Of course, if you’re a blur case like me, then it won’t matter lah.
 
Also in the future, the Vatican has become some sort of a military offenssive base to counter the threat of the Methuselah. So you’ll notice quite a heavy Christianity theme and setting here for this anime. Led by Pope Alessandro XVIII, he’s actually quite nervous, low self-esteem and indecisive. At first, you may think how could such a young guy become a Pope. Later on, you’ll find out that it wasn’t that he really wanted to but due to circumstances he has to be one. So you can see he’s like a puppet ruler.
 
Yup, that’s because the one really pulling the strings are his assistance and half siblings, the show-no-mercy and all-Methuselah-must-be-wiped-out tough standing Cardinal Francesco Di Medici, and Cardinal Catherina Sforza who’s strong willed and more determined to make peace with the Methuselah rather than destroying them. And under Catherina, she heads a group of special AX forces. A sub-group of the Department Of Foreign Affairs and each members has some sort of special ability and go around under her command to solve cases and issues pertaining to Methuselah which sometimes include eradicating them. By the way, I notice that the dressing of some of the Pope’s subjects are like KKK. Um… Nevermind.
 
Let’s briefly go over some of the AX agents. The main one for the series is Father Abel Nightroad (looks a bit like Lord Illpalazzo from Excel Sage). He is quite an amusing and interesting character. That’s because he’s the main reason for the little comic relief of the series. At first looks, he’s clumsy, goofy, absent-minded, always poor (not given enough allowance, that is) and have a sweet tooth (17 cubes of sugar in a cup of tea?!), which actually… he is! And I think Abel’s voice actor, Hiroki Touchi, did quite a good job making him sound so goofy. But besides his goofy self, his quite righteous in his beliefs like not killing his enemies outright and he uses his gun loaded with silver bullets just to disarm or weaken them. By the way, Abel is really a skinny person as you’ll see later in the series. Yeah, all those clothing and uniform must have magnified his appearance, doesn’t it? Like that saying, clothes maketh a man. Hmm… I wonder about the other AX members’ case…
 
Abel isn’t actually a human. He’s a Crusnik. What’s that? A vampire which feeds on the blood of other vampires and is more powerful than the latter. Uh-huh. Maybe at least someone to keep the vampire population in check. And when Abel transforms into his Crusnik form, he’s like saying to himself as though he’s some computer, activating the nanomachine in his body, and he looks and sounds really scary this time, no more goofy. With his white hair now all standing up which resembles the cream of an ice cream cone, a pair of red eyes and black angel wings (or devil, which ever way you look at it) and wields a very sharp skeletal scythe which looks like a boney sting ray (I think that’s what it looks like) that can cut through almost anything. Though he mentioned that his Crusnik form is his ‘mark of sins’, I’m not sure what he really meant or what sins he has committed since there isn’t anything conclusive about it throughout the series.
 
You’ll see all this in the first episode when some airship that Abel’s riding in got hijacked by a vampire. The vampire manage to kill everyone except Abel and an airstewardess Jessica, but met his doom when he took on Abel in his Crusnik form (how can they stand up and fight so stable on top of the airship at that altitude?). I seem to notice that all vampires have some sort of blade which they can unsheath from their arms. Are they born with it? No doubt that vampires are faster, stronger, have longer a life span than humans, probably that’s why they want to wipe the other weaker race out. It is also here that we’ll find out that there’s a secret terrorist organization called the Rosen Kreuz Order which consists of vampires operating in the shadows who wants world domination by destroying the Terrans so that they can start a new order.
 
Other AX agents include Tres Iqus, an efficient battle robot which look so human that you wouldn’t be able to tell the difference. But because of his emotionless and limited vocab, you may think otherwise. I like it when he whips out his double guns and shoots away at his enemies. Looks cool. Then there’s William Walter Wordsworth AKA Professor who invents bizarre inventions, some worthless, some resulting in failure, and some… which I felt was just out of the convenience of the storyline. Also, Leon Garcia (first appears in episode 7) who uses throwing disks during battles and dislikes being called ‘uncle’. And always close to Catherina and her most trusted is Vaclav Havel, who can camouflage (at first I thought he could turn invinsible). Then the mysterious Hugue De Watteau AKA Sword Dancer, whose most prominent episode is in episode 6 only whereby he’s tracking down vampires who murdered his family and the only episode where Abel doesn’t appear, is a highly skilled warrior who wields a staff-like sword.
 
At first I thought Kate Scott AKA Iron Maiden is just a hologram. Then I found out that she could project herself anywhere to give information and such. I wonder if she could see her surroundings since sometimes I notice she reacts to it. Operating from the airship, you’ll never see her in person throughout the series. Also, I kinda notice that the airships of the future have sharp thorns sticking out and in weird shapes. Reminds me of an oversized virus or even a coffin! Finally, there’s that voluptuous and flirtatious looking Noelle Bor. Forgive me, but the way they draw Noelle so sexy, that one might think that she could actually land a job in the world’s oldest profession. I mean, outfits that men consider to be sexually attracted to are usually nurses, maids and probably school girls, but sister or nun? No ‘unholy’ thoughts please. Anyway, Noelle has hinted that she may like Abel (he’s oblivious and blur of course) but unfortunately, she died early. More on that later.
 
The other main reason why I continued watching this series was Esther Blanchett. Yup, she’s a bishoujo and real cutie (no ‘unholy’ thoughts from me too). She’s the latest recruit (got officially recruited in episode 5, that is) to the AX forces making her first appearance in episode 3 where Abel travels to Ishtvan to meet her. Esther is an orphan with a mysterious link to the kingdom of Albion and was brought up by a nun Sister Laura. And because Sister Laura got murdered by some vampire named Count Gyula, she really hates them and teams up with Dietrich seeks evenge on him. Before that could happen, Count Gyula’s men attacked them and killed Dietrich Von Lohengrin before arresting Esther and Abel.
 
Then in episode 4, we hear Count Gyula’s side of the story of how his beloved wife died and that he plans to use some Star Of Sorrow to bring apocalypse to the world again. Another twist when Dietrich is found alive and is actually a member of the Order and manipulating them so that he could use it to destroy the Vatican and bring both races to war. Of course, our heroes save the day (I wonder how Abel knows the password to self destruct the Star) but not before Count Gyula realizes his mistake and stabs himself and Dietrich manage to make his escape.
 
I felt that some of the episodes are like fillers and the end of it seems like ‘what does it all mean’ kinda feeling. Like in episode 2 where Abel and Tres finds a young girl, Elise, who seems to have the mysterious power to turn humans and vampires against each other with just a mere touch. Of course they had to protect her since some vampires are after her too. But eventually Elise got kidnapped and Abel sets out to rescue her. Because earlier on Abel had broken some rules, Tres has orders to eliminate them both. I didn’t really get the last part whereby after Abel saved Elise, Tres was gonna eliminate them both but says he ran out of ammo. Just then the vampire kidnapper leader was gonna pound on them when Tres gun that vampire down. So what does it all mean? Anyway, that’s the last you’ll ever see of Elise as she walks happily back with them.
 
Or in episode 7 whereby Abel and Leon visited some island called Never Land. Yeah, you’ll notice that Peter Pan theme here. There’s a kid named Peter and Wendy here too. Some children used as experiments by Professor Barret. Something about artificial vampires and why they don’t really grow up (except for Peter) and that experiment ended in failure. Then there’s that Tinkerbell system which Wendy uses to control the other kids but the system was eventually disabled and they took them down. Instead of disposing them, they put them on a boat to Albion. And the funny part was, because of the high cost, Catherina refuse to take it as the company’s expense, much to Abel’s horror. Yeah, he’s acting all goofy again.
 
Also, some episodes have a ‘gap’ between them meaning, what happened at the end of the last episode doesn’t really continue off in the beginning of the next. Uh-huh, it made me go "what happened to that part?". My usual blur answer. Anway in episode 8 where Abel and Noelle were sent to investigate the collapsing of buildings in Barcelona. To cut things short another member of the Order, Isaak Fernand Von Kampfer, is using some oversized organ called Silent Noise to do so. Yeah, I guess the sound must be so horrible that buildings will collapse. But I wonder why only buildings. Maybe we should ask Professor Barret as he help Isaak invented it. Oops, wait. He’s dead. Isaak hanged him.
 
So while Abel try to stop Isaak, the building that Noelle’s in collapsed and sadly she died! Not before she found some blueprint of the Silent Noise and possibly it’s next attack. And because of that Abel became so discouraged. I can’t believe he got put off so easily by that event. Well, I mean of course it’s sad to lose a comrade but hey, he’s acting like he’s not interested to save the world anymore and even came to see Catherina to give up his badge after gone missing for a while. Probably why he got so discouraged was that he couldn’t protect the ones he loved as he previously promised to himself. A failure? Don’t think so.
 
As in episode 9-10, the Order infiltrates the Vatican to destroy Rome using the Silent Noise as some obelisk outside. And I knew all along that Alfonse d’Este, Alessandro’s uncle and the one who lost to his nephew over the Pope’s position, was the culprit behind it. Yeah he’s in cahoots with the Order. Even though he said that he doesn’t hold a grudge against his nepew after 5 long years, it’s all just a lie. That grudge never went away. I wonder how this man with an evil heart can serve God all this while? He even nicely ‘framed’ Catherina when the latter accuses him of going to activate the Silent Noise, which is of course a fake and a diversion, which placed Catherina under house arrest.
 
In the end, the other AX agents manage to stop the Silent Noise from activating, not before putting up a fight with some purple monster (?!) Alfonse unleashed. Meanwhile, Abel returns and takes on Isaak in his Crusnik form to protect Catherina but was unable to kill him because of his belief. Uh-huh, there’s some chip in Isaak’s heart in which Abel has to kill him in order to stop the Silent Noise. Yeah, Isaak must be mentally psychoing Abel with his words and playing with his mind. Abel manages to injure Isaak but the latter retreats when he finds out that Alfonse’s has been arrested and their plans gone awry. By this point I’m wondering if Abel’s a space alien vampire because of that flashback where he vowed to protect a young Catherina after she witness the massacre of her family by a group of vampires.
 
The number characters of the series seems to be growing as we’re introduced to Astharoshe Asran in episode 11. She’s one of the few Methuselah who still has contact with the outside The Empire (a kingdom where Methuselah dwells). She has a stripe of red hair on her head. I wonder if it’s natural or dyed? With a low opinion on Terrans, she was reluctantly partnered with Abel in Venice to hunt down a vampire, Endre, who has recently massacred a bunch of humans. She has to do this because from the order of her beloved Empress Augusta Vradica. Empress Augusta’s words are absolute and every Methuselah in The Empire loves and respects her and will without question do what she says even if it costs their lives. Also, since Empress Augusta wears a veil and voice choker, nobody really know how she looks like.
 
But it looks like Astharoshe has some personal vendetta on her mind as we see a flashback of her loved one being killed by Endre. No wonder she wants to take him out badly and doesn’t mind the safety of the innocent by standers around. Though, Abel is goofy most of the time in this episode (like how he calls her Astha-san much to her objections), he managed to ring her to her senses. Finally, when Endre decides to kill the Pope to start a war between Terrans and Methuselah only to discover that it’s a set up as Astharoshe’s dressed as a Pope. I guess this Endre guy likes to take hostages when he fights, but with some slick moves from the duo, this time they manage to overpower him and save the hostage. After this though not obvious, Ashtaroshe has a more favourable view of Abel and Terrans.
 
The things to come starts off in episode 12-14, whereby Empress Augusta sends a messenger envoy, Ion Fortuna and his assistant-cum-friend, Radu Barvon, to Catherina. But a premature blast at a building where Catherina is staying prompts that someone is there to assassinate her. Unfortunately, Ion’s there at the same time and has become a suspect. No choice he has to flee. Besides, who’d believe him if he’d try to explain, especially if Tres is around. But Catherina who believes that The Empire indeed send a messenger and wants to cement ties with The Empire. So she sends Abel and Esther to escort him safely back to her. Hey, it’s been some time since Esther appeared or played an important role.
 
While Ion is recuperating from his injuries and having some talk with Radu at some secret hideout, Esther comes in and is gonna attack Ion (yeah, she still holds a grudge over vampires) but Radu swiftly sticks a knife at her neck from behind. And it looks like Ion too doesn’t have favourable view of Terrans and has doubts of whether to proceed with his mission. But he has to because it’s a direct order from the Empress. Abel manage to arrive in time before slapping Esther because she acted so rashly and explained to Ion about things.
 
Before you know it, members of the Department of Inquisition, led by Brother Petros AKA Knight Of Destruction, who has a jetpack in built to his heavy armour and wields a huge mechanical lance which looked like an oversized duster, and Sister Paula AKA Sister Of Death, the second in command who wields twin blades. They’ve discovered Ion’s hideout and are under Francesco’s orders to protect Catherina since that incident. You know what that means. Abel instructs Esther to take Ion and Radu to escape under some secret passage while Abel takes on Petros one-on-one. Still trying to reason with a behemoth like him, huh Abel? Thing is, Petros defeated Abel as the latter plunges into the sea below. And as usual, he assumed that he died. Haih…
 
So as Esther leads the duo, we find out that Radu is the betrayer and actually plans the blasts earlier on, shocking Ion. Yeah, something like he doesn’t believe in that Terran-Methuselah co-existance and is gonna kill Ion. Remember the saying, keep your enemies close but your friends closer? Esther tries to protect Ion. But Paula arrives and kills Radu. Ion’s sad and confused. Then I don’t know how Abel got that speedboat to help them escape. But Abel’s existance shocked Petros (of course lah, it’s your fault for not really making sure in the first place) as he chased them using his jetpack. But soon as he stepped onto the speedboat, he loses his balance after some macho talk and decides to give them a chance to take Ion to see Catherina.
 
Back in town while Abel, Esther, Ion and Petros take refuge and find a way to see Catherina as the city is on full alert, Paula stays by Catherina’s side. We can see that Ion certainly gradually develop some feelings for Esther there after that heart-to-heart talk. It’s all written over your face boy. Unfortunately, Dietrich decides to stop the meeting between Ion and Catherina and controls the Inquisition’s airships and attacks the city. Plus, he unleashes dead corpses of axe wielding hooded warriors wearing facial gas masks, called Death Hunters, as footsoldiers. Time is running out and they need to go see Catherina in a jeep. Guess who’s behind the wheel? Esther of course! And she’s got no licence! Wahhh!!! I guess she pretty handle the vehicle very well in such situation.
 
But before they could reach there, the gang has been stopped by a familar face. Why, it’s Radu! I thought he’s dead. But some fight here and there as he tries to stop them. Then a moment where Esther and Ion embraced but more like they’re protecting each other but you know lah… Soon, Radu is gonna use his final canon blast in the tank he’s in but fails and the whole thing explodes with him in it. So is he really gone for good? Maybe not. Since his body was never found and it was ASSUMED that Radu’s body got disintergrated during the blast. Finally Ion and Catherina met the next day as Ion relays the message from the Empress, that they must destroy the Order and its leader, Contra Mundi, if they’re to realize their dream of co-existing both races together, in which Catherina agrees.
 
So in episodes 15-19, Catherina sends Abel and Esther to escort Ion back to The Empire’s capital, Byzantium. But it isn’t smooth sailing. Upon reaching home, to Ion’s horror, he found that his whole mansion’s servants and grandma, Mirka, has been brutally murdered by Death Hunters. To make things worse, the Empress’s soldiers have arrived at the right moment when a bomb blast occured (which meant to take out Ion and co but Abel spotted it and managed to bring them all to safety by leaping out of the window). This means that Ion is now a suspect and deemed as a betrayer also because he returned silently rather than announcing his return. By the way, I just want to note that Esther seems to call Ion ‘Kakka’ (Sir/Your Excellency) too many times until I felt ‘irritated’. It’s like, "Oh, there she goes again saying that". Nothing to it actually. And she doesn’t mean that Brazilian footballer either.
 
While Esther and Ion goes in into hiding, the 2 forge a bond of friendship and become somewhat close to each other as Abel went to find Astharoshe and talk things out with her and her childhood friend, Suleyman, who’s also the head of the Imperial Secret Council. Abel even went to see the Empress but notices that she isn’t the real one. How would he know. I mean, nobody’s seen her face before right? Meanwhile, Ion and Esther tours the city and got lost trying to find some place called Mimars and met a little tea seller girl, Seth, who thinks those 2 are a couple. Ion’s blushing but Esther seems oblivious. Unfortunately for Ion, once they reached their destination only to find that the person is being murdered with blood splattered all around. While Ion gets a shocking discovery from that person’s last breath that Radu was the one that murdered his grandma (I thought he’s dead. But then again), a Death Hunter is gonna slash him when Esther uses her back to protect Ion and take out the Death Hunter but slashed in the process and fainted. Seth then suddenly appears to with her medical kit and to heal Esther.
 
And later while Esther recuperates with Seth in a room, Ion seeks out to find Radu, in which he did. In their encounter, he tells Ion that he’s planning to assassinate the Empress and the other Terrans as he stabbed Ion and instigates things by saying how Esther’s family was killed by vampires and that she’s just waiting for a chance to avenge her grudge. Luckily, Astharoshe came by which made Radu flee. Furthermore, since the Empress is gonna attend Mirka’s funeral, it is likely, the assassination attempt is to take place there. And since Ion’s a suspect, he’s sad that he can’t attend it.
 
While Astharoshe and Abel leaves to find Radu, they left Ion and Esther in a room together. But being the stubborn kid he is, Ion decides to go find and stop them, even if Esther told him not to. And Esther’s in shock when Ion told her what Radu had earlier told him. She tried to go after him but bumped into Seth. While walking together, they saw Suleyman entering a building and having a chat with Radu about their plans. Oh oh, looks like this guy’s too an accomplice. But Esther and Seth’s presence were found out. Seth told Esther to find Astharoshe and Abel and tell them about the assassination plot as Seth takes on Suleyman. In the end, Suleyman cornered Seth and cut off the cliff’s edge and sends Seth plunging into the ocean below. As usual, he was so sure she’s dead and never checked. But what happened to Seth in the next episode seems a mystery because it didn’t tell what exactly happened to her after that.
 
Ion managed to find Radu who’s heading to attend the funeral and attacks him. I guess his emotions took over him. He’s not really thinking. Yeah, nobody’s gonna believe from a suspect that Radu’s the assassin. But before Radu could kill him, Radu’s experiencing a short change in character. What the? For that short moment he turned back into the old Radu and tells Ion to stop the assassination plot before he changes back to his evil self. Well to cut things short, actually Dietrich is controlling him. You see, Dietrich is a puppet master and his ability is to control the mind and body, dead or alive, of both humans and vampires. I see. Now that explains why Radu was ‘revived’. Anyway, the Empress arrives and tells that Ion and Esther should be kept alive for questioning and orders them to be taken to the palace.
 
Astharoshe and Abel may have arrived too late as they saw a smoke of an explosion coming from the direction of the funeral. Astharoshe’s in disbelief that the Empress is now gone. What will happen to The Empire. Yup, looks like the citizens are unsure an insecure about it too. I can’t believe that the Empress really died. Because of this, Suleyman now installs himself as the new leader of The Empire while Radu has a plan to make it as though Ion and Esther, who’re locked up in the palace dungeon’s, kill each other. After some talk and revealing himself as Dietrich to them, he shoots Ion with some dehydration bullet which makes Ion wants to crave for blood badly. And Dietrich even throws in a silver knife to Esther to say that there’s one way for her to get out alive, that is to kill Ion, before leaving. Esther’s in a dilemma and Ion can’t seem to hold much longer. Meanwhile, Astharoshe and Abel are on a boat in some underground passageway when Death Hunters emerge to stop them. Astharoshe asks Abel to go rescue Ion and Esther as she uses herself as a decoy.
 
Back at the cell, some emotionally charged talk as Esther decides not to kill Ion but allowed him to suck her blood. I was wondering why Ion didn’t just take the knife and stab himself but asked Esther to do it. But that’s not the point. Since Ion can’t suck Esther’s blood, he stabbed his leg instead. Well luckily, Abel arrived in time to with some vial to cure Ion’s condition. Hey, how does he know Ion’s in that state?
 
Suleyman’s in the main palace when Astharoshe brands him a traitor and says that Esther and Ion are witnesses for his crime. Suleyman thinks they’re dead, that is, until they both showed up, surprising him very much. The Empress than appears with another mysterious woman. Okay, so the Empress can’t die that easily. She explains that she wasn’t at the funeral when the blast occured and that it was all just a set up to see if the Order has made their move with Ion’s return. Even Mirka’s murder was a set up as it is revealed that she’s the mysterious woman standing next to her. All this must be shocking to hear. What’s even shocking is that the Empress reveals her face… IT’s SETH!!!!!!!!!! Oh my goodness!!!! I can’t believe that little kid’s the Empress. No wonder nobody has seen her before. I guess it’ll make a perfect cover up and people would least suspect it when their Empress’s a little girl. Err… So what happened when she got ‘defeated’ by Suleyman earlier on?
 
Then I’m not sure whether Suleyman killed himself or Astharoshe did it. But before he died, some emotionally charged talk between him and Seth like why she’d expected so much from him or who is she to them bla bla bla. Close your eyes buddy and take a trip to eternity. Meanwhile, Abel confronts Dietrich at some control room and advices him to give up. His answer. Of course not lah. Abel in Crusnik form tries to take Dietrich down when Seth suddenly appears in her Crusnik form too and destroys Dietrich (Radu’s body actually)! What the? She’s a Crusnik too? Yeah, she explained it all at the end when Abel and Esther prepares to leave The Empire. Looks like Seth’s just the same as with Abel and Cain (Contra Mundi, that is. But I’ll refere to him as Cain from now onwards) as she tells Abel that Cain is still alive, surprising Abel a little. Yeah, Abel wants that guy dead so much and looks like now he has to start hunting him down. Besides, it’s been 900 years since Seth and Abel met. Wow. And Seth didn’t age a little. Must be Botox. Just kidding. Well also, we see Ion reluctantly wanted Esther to go. Yeah, looks like he’s in love with her. But Esther says she has things to do and will come back and visit, much to Ion’s joy.
 
The final arc of the series from episodes 20-24, starts off with the passing of the Queen Of Albion. To make things worse, the rightful heir to the throne passed away 15 years ago leaving the kingdom with no ruler. And the most eligible ruler would be from outside the kingdom, which the Vatican doesn’t want to happen. So, Esther and Alessandro visits the kingdom to also strengthen their ties. So the duo has been greeted by Colonel Mary Spencer of Albion’s Navy, and Virgil Walsh, a noble and owner of a factory in Londinium.
 
At the factory, Esther and Alessandro also finds out a secret underground factory, whereby a group of Methuselahs born and bred there are providing Terrans of the kingdom with Lost Technology. Well, it’s not like these vampires want to do it on their own free will but they have no where else to go either. Suddenly several explosion goes off. It looks like a rebellion from those underground vampires, led by Vanessa, who’s also Virgil’s sister. She’s taking this opportunity to free themselves from the Terran’s clutches since the Queen Of Albion has already passed away, which renders the situation a little less stable. And part of their plan is to kidnap the Pope. Luckily Esther takes him to safety.
 
Meanwhile, news of the explosion has reached the Vatican. Though, the Pope’s whereabouts and status are unconfirmed Catherina wants a more peaceful solution instead of Francesco’s extreme brute force to wipe out the vampires. So Catherina despatches her AX agents there. Abel, Leon and Professor are already there when they’re meet up by Petros and Paula. Though Petros is reluctant, but for now they have to work together to save Alessandro as Abel shows them a secret passage into the underground factory. How does he know these things? Convenience?
 
So to cut things short, Alessandro got lost, meets up with a little girl, Angelica, from the underground factory, the both chat, she looks up to him but he tells her his own shortcomings and low self-esteem. Vanessa finds him and forcefully wants to take him, that is until Angelica pleads to her with her innocent face and talk, so Vanessa just asks Alessandro to follow her but she got ambushed by Petros and Paula. During her fight with Petros (she reminds me of Medusa using her hair as weapon) she lost and Petros was about to kill her but Alessandro pleads him not to. Yeah, that guy has to listen to the Pope even though it’s not what he wanted. Petros spares her as Alessandro and the Inquisition duo tries to head out of the place when they’ve been cornered by Death Hunters. With no way out, Petros is thinking of using his life to defend Alessandro till the end, that is until Vanessa appears and dispose all the Death Hunters. See, a good deed deserves another. They manage to get Alessandro to safety. At this point, I felt that Alessandro isn’t as ‘weak’ as he use to be.
 
Meanwhile the other AX agents are disposing hordes of Death Hunters themselves with Leon meeting up with Peter and Wendy for a brief moment. Earlier on, Esther got trapped in one of Dietrich’s traps and was left there alone when a Death Hunter comes by ready to chop her into half. Luckily, God’s on her side as Abel shoots it down an unties her and asks her to take the elevator up for her safety. Meanwhile Cain finally makes his appearance (unless you count that short appearance after that Silent Noise incident as one. But I guess viewers won’t remember him much then) as he blasts all the hapless guards in front of the building with ease. Cain seems to be heading towards the underground factory as Esther tends to an injured Mary. But soon, Esther decides to follow Cain and took another route down there.
 
Abel confronts Dietrich who’s planning to activate something at some control room. Abel transforms into his Crusnik form and a battle ensues. Soon, Cain shows up and kills Dietrich! Well, so much for him. Looks like he could control dead bodies except his own. It’s a showdown as Abel charges towards Cain. But because Abel saw Esther coming up from Cain’s rear, he hesitated which allowed Cain to easily kill Abel. Woah! Abel, the main hero dies?! I think the producers took it off from the Bible where Cain killed Abel. Esther’s screaming in disbelief.
 
Yup, Abel did really died as we see Esther crying beside his coffin and blaming herself for his death in episode 23. I can’t believe it too. But I’m thinking there’s gonna be some twist to this whole thing. Ion and Astheroshe heard that Abel has died and no doubt that they want to head over to Albion, Astharoshe says they have to meet the Pope as ordered. What’s this? Catherina giving something to Tres and sending him off on some mission. Hmm…
 
And after a long time, we see Isaak again. Yeah, he’s controlling some spaceship, Aegis, and causing havoc over the city. We also see him having a chat with Cain through the screen like how Cain ‘scolded’ him for not fixing his body up properly. To cut things short, Cain’s body was damage when he descended to Earth long time ago and he wants to merge with Abel’s body so that he could continue to bring a new order to the world. So as Cain destroys the city, Cain goes looking for Abel’s corpse.
 
Here’s another news. Virgil is convinced that Esther is the ‘Star Of Hope’. Meaning, that Esther is actually the rightful heir to the throne of Albion! And I found out that her name means star in Persian. Is that shocking? Before her dad died 15 years ago, he hid his baby princess in another country and that princess is Esther. Well, if you put things together, it does make sense. So that’s her mysterious link to Albion. Virgil wants Esther to help him calm the people of the city. Though Esther didn’t believe it all at first but eventually she has to do what she has to do. When she arrived at the main building, she addressed her subjects and gave some form of hope to her people in her speech. I guess, she’s really fit to be the future Queen Of Albion. After her speech, she left to to be by Abel’s side.
 
The rest of the AX agents gear up to combat against Isaak and whatever those mini balls he released from Aegis. I didn’t know that Professor could invent a flying rocket car! Yeah, it switched from land to air with just a click of a switch. Out of convenience, isn’t it? We also see some sword slashing skills from Hugue and the Inquisition duo chips in to help take down the hovering menace. But their action seems futile because Aegis is being protected by some force shield. I don’t know what the Professor’s blabbing about the workings of the force shield. But somehow they manage to disable it and then with everybody’s combined power, they blasted Aegis and fry Isaak along with it.
 
Meanwhile, at Abel’s coffin, Esther arrives to find Tres pouring some chemicals into it and saying mission complete. Then Cain comes in as Tres whips out his pistols and starts shooting but with no effect on him. And in one blow, he blasts Tres away. Before you know it, Abel revives but now is all black like a devil with electrical current over him. Is that Catherina’s plot earlier on? Convenience, maybe. So Abel and Cain have their duel match in the sky. And we see a flashback that Abel, Cain, Seth and their mom Lilith were actually some experiments for some Mars exploration thingy! What crap is that?! Abel seems grumpy and negative until a cool and calm Cain tells him about future, destiny and all that stuffs. Probably that’s where he changed. But that’s just about it for the flashbacks. Nothing more. Back at the Vatican, Catherina and Astharoshe met and discussed things for the future. Looks like Ion has ran off somewhere.
 
So back to the ariel battle. Some zapping here and there so much so I don’t know who actually won the match. Really. That’s because the scene changes to the coronation of Queen Esther as we see her being crowned and watched by everybody. Yeah, looks like she’s gonna take on her destiny as the future ruler of Albion. And lastly, we see Abel. He seems to have got his memory back and sounds more serious this time. Yup, looks like Ion wants to join him in search of Cain and bring an end to the Order, even if it’s dangerous and will cost his life. Uh-huh. Looks like that last battle didn’t end with a winner and Cain is still on the loose.
 
And THAT’S IT!!! The ending was so open-ended that it raises more question than answers. You could say that I’m bloody dissatisfied with how it all ended. But all that dissatisfaction toned down when I found out that the author of the series, Sunao Yoshida, died shortly after the anime was announced. Thus, the storyline was never finished. I see. So that’s what that line ‘Dedicated to Sunao Yoshida’ at the end of the last episode meant. Though I’m still dissatisfied with the ending, but I could say that the reason for such unpleasant ending is now much more justified and I felt less ‘bitter’.
 
Because of the unfinished storyline, probably I guess that’s why the anime was left hanging like that too. Which means the character developments for the anime are only so so. Yeah, I notice that there isn’t much background about them especially some of the AX agents but if you want to know them, you’ll still have to read the manga, at least for what has been told by it. People say that there’s some chemistry between Abel and Esther. But as far as I can see, there isn’t. Unless you consider one those blushing moments from Esther when she chats with Abel in one of the earlier episodes. To me, nah.
 
Since the series deals with vampires, there are some scenes which are dark and grim. Though there aren’t many vampire sucking blood scenes, because of the fight action sequence, it may be a little gory, bloody and gruesome. Not for the weak-hearted or younger viewers. Though the review says that the fight sequences are awesome and non-repetitive (meaning, no ‘recycled’ bits of the same action scene), I just felt that they were okay and nothing that spectacular, since I only like those action sequences with Tres firing his double pistols away and the last episode where everybody teams up to take on Isaak.
 
Therefore, theoratically I was ‘naturally right’ that I initially decided not to watch this. However, if I haven’t done so, then I wouldn’t have known a handful of nice BGMs. Yes, there are a variety of them and I like those soft and slow ballads which may range from piano solo to easy guitar picking. At first I thought that there was some mistake when the name of some of the soundtrack goes something like TB No. XX (number) then followed by its name. Then I realized that that is its actual name because that name appeared in all other soundtrack listing sites as well! Strange.
 
There are also several soundtrack albums. I want to note that there’s a soundtrack whereby some instrumental music is playing in the background with the characters of the series talking (not sure whether they’re lines from the series or not). You should here Abel’s one. It’s really weird, goofy and amusing. The opening theme song, Dress, by Buck-Tick, sounds kinda ‘drowsy’. No, it’s not a cure for insomnia, but I felt it rather fits with the dark vampire theme of the series. Meanwhile the ending theme, Broken Wings, by Tomoko Tane is totally sung in English and sounds a little ‘broken’. More like poor diction actually.
 
So for those who can’t get enough of vampire genre series, you can add this one to your list since the characters are drawn to appeal to bishie fans alike. Uh-huh, even vampires are pretty and handome looking rather than your typical scary and horror looking blood sucking creatures. Probably the hidden message of the series is getting along with each other is a long and slow frustrating process but a beneficial one in the end. But good thing that there isn’t any vampires in the real world. Not so much because they threaten our safety. More of because we can’t even get along with each other of the same kind in the first place! Maybe that’s why the aliens decide to give our planet a pass. But that’s a different story.