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"Nice Head"

The plot of Kurozuka from Madhouse studios delves even deeper into the dark side with the second episode. This historical vampire romance is fast becoming a highlight of my week, the animation is superb it’s easily the best action series and although it is extremely confusing, we tend to jump around time lines a lot, you are left with the desire to understand more. I will add a warning yet again with this series isn’t for the faint hearted there is a lot of gore and yet again we are treated to another show this season with talking decapitated heads.

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I’ll try my hardest to summarise this episode but forgive me for any inconsistencies as it really did hop around a lot. The episode opens with what I am guessing to be a weekly flash back to previous events in the form of a traditional theatrical production, so we know they are in fact telling us a legend as opposed to the events actually happening right now. We open after the OP on a samurai seemingly beheading and cutting down the members of a town so he is able to steal from them, while robbing from his victims he spots a man and woman walking towards him who is also massacres rather quickly (does anyone else think the pair look rather familiar) he then escapes and finds himself at the home of none other than Kuromitsu. The usual warning is uttered, don’t set foot in the back room if you know what’s good for you, or basically if you want to keep your life.

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This is where the plot line becomes slightly confusing and we end up wondering which reality is which, we see Kuromitsu sharpening her blade and talking to a decapitated head who strongly resembles Kuro, Next we see an odd room where Benkei the companion of Kuro being questioned by the elderly character we saw in the previous episode who attacked Kuromitsu’s home. There is an unnerving atmosphere about this whole sequence as the character shifts between appearing first as Benkei and then as Kuro, evil motives are revealed along with the onset of madness, the man screams wishing to know what his ‘real name is’ and we are greeted with the response that he is in fact the leader of the opposing army. The scene then flashes to where we left Kuro and Kuromitsu last episode in the forest with a still very injured Kuro and Kuromitsu is well, sucking his blood.

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Kuromitsu offers Kuro the gift of immortality so they can stay together forever, after drinking her blood Kuro begins to go through what I am assuming is ‘the change’ into a vampire. The pair who are currently very unclothed, it was kinda an erotic sucking sequence after all, possibly something else happened as well. They are attacked by the elderly man and his army from the previous episode who desires to know the reason for Kuromitsu’s eternal life, Kuromitsu then ends up being impaled against a tree. Kuro rises apparently the blood has taken hold and in a kaleidoscope of greens annihilates the army to save the woman he loves, Kuromitsu reveals that the secret to her eternal life is “The power of blood” Benkei appears, Kuromitsu notices a mark on his hand and Kuro spectacularly loses his head and awakens in what appears to be an alternative reality

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I personally really love this series although at times very complex in plot and I would like more background information on all the characters involved it still intrigues me. The alluring subtle beauty in Kuromitsu’s facial expressions always manage to impress me and it seems without even realising it I ended up with a fascinating vampire love story (Vampire Knight take note this is how something is done), mesmerizing action scene’s great voice actors and a very intriguing script. There are still so many questions that need to be answered, who is Benkei? What is reality? Why did Kuro lose his head? Where is Kuromitsu now? Madhouse are really outdoing themselves this season this is one of 4 great series they have produced this fall. Not for the easily offended or those opposed to mature series but definitely one of the highlights of the season, a must watch in my book.