Vampire Hunter D, Vol. 3
D…that single letter strikes fear into the hearts of vampires and excitement into manga and anime fans all over the world. This new Vampire Hunter Dmanga version puts a new spin on a literary classic from Japanese pop culture.
D the dhampir, the child of a human mother and vampire father, has a reputation that precedes him. The famed hunter is widely known for his successes in hunting down demons, despite being one himself. In volume 3, a town elder calls upon him for help. The noble vampire Mayerling has kidnapped his daughter and turned the whole town into vampires. The man begs D to rescue his daughter before she too is turned.
However, D isn’t the only one hunting Mayerling. This time, he is in direct contention with an elite mercenary family known as the Marcus clan, each member with their own secret power. When D rescues the youngest sister, Leila, she starts to realize that perhaps it would be more worthwhile to work with D than her abusive brothers.
Throughout the book, Mayerling flees from D and the Marcus clan in hopes of reaching a space station and leaving the planet. As the deadly pursuit rages on, D and Leila quickly realize that this whole chase may not be a kidnapping at all. Could it be that the maiden in need of rescuing left of her own accord? Is it possible that a vampire noble could fall in love with a human?
The Vampire Hunter D universe is fascinating in that it has the grace of a fantasy tale, the darkness of a horror tale, and the technology of science fiction. The types of stories and violence found in this series are more likely to appeal to male readers but are certainly not inaccessible to females either.
Saiko Takaki’s Vampire Hunter D manga works are based on Hideyuki Kikuchi’s novels. The original novels were illustrated by famed Final Fantasy andSandman: The Dream Hunters artist Yoshitaka Amano back in the 1980s. Takaki’s adaptations bring Vampire Hunter D into manga form for the first time. The art is not very reminiscent of Amano’s works, but then again, Amano generally doesn’t draw panels. Still, the art style truly suits the setting and fills every inch of the page with detail.
The action and occasional nudity is suitable for older teen readers and adults. Keep in mind though that this is not a light read. This book is longer and darker than the average manga, plus it can be a little confusing trying to figure out some of the action sequences. However, this series is a new take on a classic piece of Japanese pop culture that would make a great addition to any manga collection.
Reviewed by Courtney Kraft on June 2, 2009
Vampire Hunter D, Vol. 3
- Publication Date: June 2, 2009
- Genres: Graphic Novel
- Paperback: 200 pages
- Publisher: Digital Manga Publishing
- ISBN-10: 156970788X
- ISBN-13: 9781569707883