Watch or Drop? Rules
Rules modified for the Autumn 2021 season.
- The anime must be new (not a sequel or spin-off).
- I’ll watch as much as it takes to make a decisionas to whether the anime will be added to the watch/review list or dropped and forgotten. For good.
Just so we’re clear – I didn’t actually watch episodes 1-3. Episode 1 was enough.
Look, unlike Sleepy Princess, I did get to the end of episode one of Vlad Love and realistically I could watch more. It isn’t as though it was totally painful or overly offensive, although the nude nurse definitely makes you wonder what exactly the writer’s sense of humour is based on. If I had to sum up my thoughts while watching episode one I could do it with one word: dull. And for a school comedy featuring a starving vampire and a girl obsessed with blood donation (which is one weird obsession but I guess we’ve seen weirder in anime) to manage to be dull is perhaps the best merit I’ll give it.
That probably isn’t fair.
Actually, Banba, the lead character, could actually be a pretty interesting character if they were a side character in a different anime with better writers. Conceptually I like Banba. Watching her here however she just doesn’t have anything to work with.
Also, Mai, the vampire newly arrived from Transylvania after her shipping container got lost is also on paper a pretty interesting character. her desire for blood is at war with her desire not to actually bit or enslave people and all things considered exploration of that could be quite fun. Again, this wasn’t enough to make me stick around through any more of this anime but there’s certainly some potential there.
I covered the biggest one in the first impressions and that was that I was bored. They blow up a blood donation van, have a nurse strip, and we meet a Transylvanian vampire and I still wasn’t in any way interested in what I was watching. Part of this was because it is visually one of the least impressive anime I’ve picked up so far this year. However I think a lot of it is just down to delivery of the material. In more adept hands there isn’t anything overly wrong with the concept but it failed to get me even mildly curious about where it intended to go – and honestly given the people behind this one have some real credibility in making anime, you have to wonder just what has gone wrong.
This anime seems to want to be bizarre and off-the-wall and not care but it just hasn’t got the zany energy to pull it off. Also, episode one introduces characters that with a bit more effort could have been interesting but instead has them become one-note memes even before the episode ends. You kind of hope that maybe in the following episodes they expand their repertoire but the damage is already done and any desire I may have had to see more of these characters was already thoroughly killed before the episode came to a halt.
Well at least Vlad Love has the privilege of being my first official declared drop in this new series of posts. For me to be this disengaged by a vampire story is a bit weird and I would claim it was the comedy angle except that I loved Karin and quite enjoyed Rosario and Vampire. So I have a clear history of actually kind of enjoying school based vampire comedies.
Honestly, I really found this one to be dull and just not worth even the small amount of time it would take to watch the next two episodes. Still, I’d love to know your first impressions if you gave Vlad Love a go.
Images from: Vlad Love. Dir. M Oshii. Production I.G, Drive. 2021
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2 thoughts on “Watch or Drop? Is Vlad Love Worth Watching?”
I made it all the way through episode 2 before dropping the show, and my impression isn’t all that different from yours. In some ways the anime collects comedy tropes from the late 90s through the 2000s, which I didn’t like back then and still don’t like. You’ll still find characters like the sexualised nurse these days, but they used to be far more common. That’s a rare form of nostalgia, when an anime brings back all the things you never really missed and some which you would have liked to fade into obscurity.
For what it’s worth, it still wasn’t an immediate and clean drop after episode 2, but that was more me wanting to like the show than me actually liking what’s on screen. Sort of curious what becomes of this, but not curious enough to actually watch.
As I said in the review though it is a bit of a shame because there were elements of this that I really wanted to like. Ultimately though I got to the end of episode 1 and had no desire to continue.