Original Run: July 8, 2022 - September 30, 2022 Number of Episodes: 13 Genre: Comedy, Romance, Supernatural Based on the Series Created By: Kotoyama
***Warning, the following may contain spoilers for Call of the Night. Reader discretion is advised.***
Kou Yamori (voiced by Gen Satou) has grown disillusioned with daily life. He finds going to school to be more trouble than it’s worth, and he is tired of putting on an act around people. Thus, he decides it’s time for a change, and what better way to start than to head into a world that seems off-limits – night.
On his first night out, Kou decides to be more rebellious than he has ever dared to be. But before he can do anything, he meets a person that will change his life forever – the vampire Natsuna Nanakusa (voiced by Sora Amamiya).
Natsuna shows Kou the beauty of the night and the freedom it brings. Convinced, Kou asks Natsuna to turn him into a vampire. However, it’s not that easy.
To become a vampire, a human must first fall in love with the vampire attempting to turn them. For Kou, who knows nothing about what it means to be in love, this is a tall order. Nevertheless, he will do his best to fall for the larger-than-life Nazuna.
From what I can gather, as of October 2022, there is no news regarding a Call of the Night 2. That is a problem. While this series didn’t end on a cliffhanger or in the middle of a plot, it didn’t finish either. No, this season, thankfully, reached a natural pause point. But that was the thing. I didn’t want to pause.
Call of the Night was immensely entertaining, and I mean that in every sense of the word. This show had humor and fun – we’ll get to those points in a moment. It had the makings of what could become a meaningful romance. Heck, this series even had some decent action scenes and instances that were undeniably tense. Those latter two aspects weren’t key components, but the fact they existed at all and fit within this story’s overarching goofy air was remarkable.
So let me emphasize again, and I wish there were a more grandiose word to use: Call of the Night was entertaining.
I’m not sure why Call of the Night decided to go as hard as it did on its animation, but fair play all the same. This was a beautiful-looking series.
Although Liden Films, this show’s production studio, hasn’t produced low-quality-looking anime, it has never come close to reaching this level before. Call of the Night employed an astonishing mastery of colors, motions, and sceneries. Additionally, this series’ characters were expressive, energetic, and fluid.
Despite the vast majority of this story happening at night, the show was never void of light and a bright pallet. These visuals added so much to an atmosphere and attitude already brimming with personality. A personality, by the way, that blossomed from a robust cast of characters.
Now, I’m not going to lie. I have had to perform some mental gymnastics to overlook a central premise of this show. Remember, Call of the Night is building up a romantic relationship between a fourteen-year-old middle schooler and a several-decades-old vampire. Primarily because we are dealing with vampires and the supernatural, my that-is-super-creepy sense is not blaring; I can accept the fantasy of this show.
Having done that, I can confidently say Nazuna Nanakusa has easily become one of my favorite characters of 2022. She displays an amazing balance between confidence, laziness, coyness, and badassness.
Often within the same scene, Nazuna could go from controlling the entire conversation to losing her train of thought after some off-hand remark. She definitely has plenty of life experiences that allow her to come off as mature. However, her carefree outlook on almost everything did make her quite childish. And both sides of her persona worked.
A particular moment stood out when Nazuna arrived fully prepared to fight a group of other vampires. She was mad and ready to cause as much destruction as necessary, even going so far as to make a grand entrance onto the scene. But then one of her potential opponents brought up classic girl’s night love talk. Nazuna, who always lost her cool over that subject, stopped functioning out of embarrassment. This shift intensity wasn’t jarring, and neither negated the other. No, both were equally valid; they were the type of reaction one would expect from Nazuna.
Given Nazuna’s brand, she was a character who required someone to play off of. Yes, she could have given us a one-person act and Call of the Night probably would have still been worth watching. Except Nazuna and this series were at their best whenever our lead vampire had someone with her. To ensure this was always the case, every other character – or, at least, the ones who had the chance to interact with Nazuna – could perform this role.
Even more fortunately, Nazuna’s co-lead, Kou Yamori, was especially good at this.
What’s more, Kou was – typical – pretty good at holding his own. He had a surprising amount of self-assuredness when he confronted vampires. In the heat of the moment, Kou would make big claims and declarations without embarrassment or hesitation. Granted, it would usually be later when he would realize the full consequences of what he did. Still, when push came to shove, Kou could usually shove.
So, when this series reached its final episode, I didn’t want it to end. While Call of the Night had been good throughout its run, it was building some serious momentum as it reached its conclusion. Here’s hoping we get a second season soon and this show has a chance to capitalize on its success.
This section will be short, not because I don’t have any issues with this series. No, it will be short because I’m not exactly sure what it is that’s bothering me about this show.
Perhaps the gap between Kou and Nazuna is gnawing at me more than I thought. Design and temperament-wise, our leads weren’t fantastically different. At the very least, their differences in ages weren’t glaring. However, this series would throw in details that made things hard to overlook.
For instance, Nazuna loved alcohol and always ordered it when she and Kou went to a place that served it. Kou, being a minor, couldn’t partake. For crying out loud, Nazuna and Kou met when Kou considered rebelling a little and bought a beer from the vending machine (which Japan does have, by the way).
These blatant examples of Nazuna and Kou being vastly different never sat well with me. After all, how would this series come off if our protagonists’ genders were reversed?
But, as I said earlier, the whole vampire angle allowed there to be enough disassociation from what would otherwise be a pretty big issue.
It might seem I was stretching there to say something negative about this show at the end. No, I legitimately don’t know what is bugging me about this series, especially since I thoroughly enjoyed it. Perhaps a second season would give me the words I need to express myself.
Or maybe a season two will just reinforce why this story was so fun. Regardless, there needs to be more.
This show delivered an addicting energy that made it thoroughly entertaining to watch. It was funny, goofy, and fun from beginning to end. This series had a cast of characters and a visual style that allowed it to be a standout anime of the year.
Therefore, Call of the Night has earned a recommendation.
But these are my thoughts; what are yours? Have you seen this show; how would you advise Call of the Night? Leave a comment below because I would love to hear what you have to say.
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