I’m a millennial whose Twilight phase never quite ended. This means some of my favorite anime include Vampire Knight, Hellsing, Rosario + Vampire – you get the gist. So, when I heard that Call Of The Night was getting an anime adaptation? Let’s just say, it had me intrigued.
Vampire manga, in general, is a reluctant passion of mine. Vampire anything, really. There’s just something about the darkness vampire media describes. The gentle but frightening allure of the nighttime is when these creatures come to life. The elegance most of these monsters have. The way they describe blood is like it’s their very life essence. Which it technically is but, you know, they explain it more poetically.
And, boy, have vampires come back in vogue. Thanks in part to adaptations like Castlevania and The Case Study Of Vanitas. God, I cannot begin to tell you how much Castlevania fanfiction I have consumed in the past 2 years. Solely because I’m vampire trash and I will hear no slander about it.
And so, we turn to Call Of the Night. Let’s see how this newest contender fares in a growing list of vampire anime.
Call of The Night: Main Plot
Call of the Night is a Japanese manga created, written, and illustrated by Kotoyama in 2019, going on to become a best seller. The animation is done by Linden Films, a studio that is known for working on titles such as Tokyo Revengers and Berserk.
The plot follows our protagonist, Ko Yamori, a high schooler who has recently been diagnosed with Insomnia after quitting school. And so, he is often found wandering the streets of Tokyo at night, so he could clear his head of the anxiety and stress that plagues him. He is unsatisfied, caught in his fears, and terribly lonely.
However, one night, he crosses paths with Nazuna Nanakusa. Flirtatious and laidback, she talks to Kazuna and theorizes that the reason for his insomnia is his own insecurities that hold him back since he has no outlet for them during the day. Nazuna imagines that Ko probably won’t be sleeping until he sorts out what he does when he is awake.
Intrigued by their conversation, she invites him back to her apartment and, well, he’s a teenage boy. Of course, he agrees but quickly realizes he bit more than he could chew when Nazuna reveals herself to be a ‘Night Walker’ – a vampire that comes alive in the neon-accented Tokyo nights. And she promptly bites down on his neck.
Yofukashi no Uta: Story Breakdown
There is an underlying sadness in the general tone of comedy that encapsulates Call Of The Night. The premise is simple enough, Ko is your above-average high schooler who seemingly throws it all away because he feels maintaining the façade of the perfect amicable student is not worth the trouble anymore. He’s a character who actively addresses these more complicated issues regarding identity and relationships with logic, whereas protagonists his age are just expected to go with the flow. He’s lonely, emotionally a bit stunted, and lost.
And then there’s Nazuna. She’s exciting, casual, a complete foil to Ko. Nazuna tricks him, but only after she talks to him about his disorder. She gives him time and listens. She later reveals it’s because his blood calls to her, that it is the sweetest thing she’s ever tasted. But then, she doesn’t have to be emotionally invested in him. To the point where she shows active regard for his well-being. So why care about this sad human, one of many, that comes out in the night?
Is Kotoyama a Genius Mangaka?
Kotoyama is known for writing atmospheric works, such as their previous manga Dagashi Kashi. They paint such a vibrant but dynamic environment around their stories and that shows in this anime. With the dimmed starry night and glowing neon icons, casting shadows on the streets that are our character’s playground. As the bustling streets turn quiet, the music winds down as well. It’s all very calming, cozy even.
This is what I think Ko craves. The comfort of belonging somewhere where he doesn’t have to pretend. With Nazuna, he never does. And so, when he asks to become a vampire himself, you get a sense of desperation from him that isn’t about him seeking immortality or avoiding people. But rather a need for love and affection because this way he can be with Nazuna forever.
Is Call of The Night Worth Watching?
At its core, this is a supernatural romantic comedy anime about a vampire and a high school dropout. Ko is curious, and analytical with his emotions but lacks self-preservation skills. Nazuna is cunning and magnetic and all-around fun. The anime itself captures the strange, almost grunge-y beauty of the night really well.
It is shaping up to be a proper slow burn, with what we’ve seen so far. But with something so strangely poignant despite the humor and innuendos? I think it’s worth the watch!