Author: CLAMP, Kotone Ranmaru
Genre: YA, spin-off or sequel, manga, vampires, urban fantasy, thriller
Publication Date: March 19, 2013 (Dark Horse Comics – North America)
Source: NetGalley Review Copy
Summary: Saya Kisaragi is a kindhearted, if somewhat clumsy, student who trains by day to perform standard religious duties at her father’s shrine—but she becomes an unstoppable, monster-slaying swordswoman by night! The saga that began in Blood: The Last Vampire and the Blood+ anime series continues here! The world of Blood-C was created by the powerhouse manga team CLAMP in collaboration with Production I.G, the legendary anime studio that produced the original Blood+ episodes and the new Blood-C animated series and feature-length movie! Don’t miss the schoolyard foibles, weird creatures, and katana-swinging action in this new manga series by Ranmaru Kotone, based on the hit Blood-C anime and infused with CLAMP’s original concepts and characters!
☆: 4/5 stars – a great new addition to the “Blood: The Last Vampire” universe!
Review: It’s no secret that I’m a sucker for pretty much anything CLAMP does/participates in, and “BLOOD-C” is no exception. I’m also a huge fan of the greater “Blood: The Last Vampire” universe, too. If you’ve wanted an alternate universe where Kisaragi Saya is a bumbling schoolgirl yet deadly hunter, this is definitely one of the “BLOOD” spin-offs you need to check out.
The content of the manga isn’t so different from the “BLOOD-C” TV series, if you’ve seen that. It covers up until Nene and the Old Ones come into the picture (I’ll admit that I’m not really digging Dark Horse’s choice of English translation for “furukimono” – I’d have preferred the “Old Ones” over “Ancient Ones”, but that’s me being nitpicky). What is great is that there are a lot of the foreshadowing clues that didn’t seem as obvious in the anime compared to here in the manga – like we can see where things are going, and they’re not going in a great direction. And fast.
There’s a lot of action, too – lots of battles with the Old Ones, but I’d have preferred more than what we got, but we have a few more volumes to go, so hopefully Kotone and CLAMP will up their game a bit more in future volumes. But what we did get? Kotone really did a great job with those fight scenes, and even though I wish CLAMP had illustrated the manga themselves, Kotone does a good job filling in for them. A really good job. If you’re going to check out this manga only because it is apart of the “BLOOD” universe, just check it out for those fight scenes as well as what the Old Ones look like. Pretty creepy, compared to the originals we saw in “Blood: The Last Vampire”, “Blood: 2000”, and “Blood+”.
And as in any CLAMP creation, there’s already a crossover clue – keep your eye on the dog Saya finds at the end of this volume, then watch the film that serves as an end to the series, “The Last Dark”, if you can. All I can say in that respect is – well played, CLAMP. They took a piece of the “BLOOD” universe and really made it their own. Saya as an innocent, bumbling yet absolutely deadly schoolgirl is an absolutely brilliant angle that I’d hoping someone would create for awhile, and my wish came true with this series. I don’t know about everyone else, but I really enjoyed it – and with what’s coming up on the horizon for this series (when shit get real), it’ll definitely knock your socks off.
Also, the translation is pretty great, and they include all of the original color plates from the source material. Seriously delicious, and worth the buy for those alone.
Final verdict? If you’re looking for something new and fun to read, or if you’re a CLAMP/BLOOD fan, definitely be sure to check out “Blood-C: Volume 1”. It drops from Dark Horse Comics on March 19, 2013 in North America so be sure to look for it then!