The arc draws to a close as the series hits the halfway point.
What They Say:
The fourth progenitor is the most powerful vampire once thought to exist only in the world of legends. Yet when it appears in Japan, the government for some reason chooses an apprentice “sword shaman”, Yukina Himeragi, to observe and obliterate it. Bewildered by the disproportionate task and its specific details, Yukina arrives at the Demon District of Itogami-jima to watch Akatsuki Kojo, and a student at a private high school on Itogami-jima.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Strike the Blood has managed as we hit the halfway mark of the series to make me question whether I’ll keep watching it or not. While I enjoyed the early episodes and the potential, it’s faltered heavily on execution since then and left me feeling more and more disconnected from it as it went on. At this point, it really comes down to how busy the next season is with whether I keep going or not. And for me, that’s pretty damning. While the show has had some neat ideas and I generally have a preference for light novel adaptations since they’re structured differently from manga adaptations, this show hasn’t really made it feel like I know these characters well enough after twelve episodes to care too much who they are.
The island arc has had its fun moments to be sure as we see Himeragi and Akatsuki together there and surviving well enough, but it naturally got more complicated as it went along and we got La Folia arriving and Akatsuki severely wounded to the point where he really needs an infusion of energy. While La Folia is all set to give him the proper kiss in her sultry way, Himeragi’s jealous nature trumps all else and even as she realizes she’s been tricked into the kiss and closeness, she’s all too willing to do it since she obviously does like him in the end. And what a way to be revived, right? Amusingly, Akatsuki is pretty thirsty at this point and as much as she tries to resist, especially since they’re being watched, it’s to no avail as his hunger is most definitely dominant.
While this makes for a pretty fun first half, the second half goes more to the action side of things as the Magus Craft group obviously isn’t going to give up on what they want and that means a lot more attacks by the pair that are at the forefront of it. The difference this time around is La Folia is a part of the fight and is putting up a good defense and offense alongside Himeragi and the recovering Akatsuki. She definitely has a decent bit of style about her with her attacks but also just in general, which makes it work. As the events shift to focusing more on Himeragi and Akatsuki as they deal with Kanase, it has a similar kind of appeal in terms of the animation and action of it all since there are some great visuals, but again it’s hampered by a weak storyline that has simply not come together well week after week.
And so another arc comes to a close for Strike the Blood, complete with several of the girls ganging up on Akatsuki in the epilogue after the credits since he’s gotten close to a few of them along the way. The series has its moments and there are definitely a few of them here of worth, but I keep coming back to the problem that it’s just not clicking as a whole with the characters themselves who don’t have enough depth and the stories that feel ill-formed and incomplete. I like aspects of it and it may be the weekly aspect that’s hurting it compared to a marathon run. This arc ends better than some of the others if only for the action as that’s definitely nicely done, but it’s really the only saving grace at this point.
Streamed By: Crunchyroll
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