The Nihon Review - Anime Reviews & Editorials

Trinity Blood

Title: Trinity Blood
Genre: Action/Drama
Company: Gonzo/Trinity Blood Production Committee/Victor Entertainment/WOWOW
Format: 24 episodes
Dates: 29 Apr 2005 – 28 Oct 2005

Synopsis: In the distant future humans and vampires are at war with each other, each wanting the other side’s extinction. After many years of fighting, the potential for peace arises, but an ancient power that wants to destroy the world seeks to prevent this from happening. Father Abel Nightroad, along with a team of Vatican special operatives, the AX, fight to prevent the situation from dissolving into chaos, but old feuds and prejudices have a tendency not to disappear overnight.

The Highlights
Plot: Fragmented and nonsensical.
Characters: Lifeless husks that disappear and reappear at convenience.
Animation: Solid; typical Gonzo product.
Music: Complements the scenes well.
Originality: Next to none of it.

If you are an anime fan, chances are the word “vampires” either makes you squeal with delight or roll your eyes in disgust. Shows like Trinity Blood, with their complete lack of good ideas, are a big reason why I fall into the latter category of fan. Trinity Blood shamelessly and appallingly borrows from other anime to a degree I haven’t seen since RahXephon. Despite the occasional unimaginative flair, RahXephon is a well written and entertaining anime, unlike Trinity Blood which is a hairy drain clog stuck in the sink of anime production made from old pieces of successful series.

Before it was an anime, Trinity Blood was a series of novels. Rather than blend the plots of the novels into a nice continuous story, each novel’s story is told and then followed by another, usually unrelated, chapter. Needless to say, the result is a garbled mess that leaves the viewer uninspired and unattached. The events that transpire feel very contrived; let’s just say entire subplots and ideas are stolen from Trigun and Hellsing. Despite having good influences, the plot can be summed up as, “fight some vampires, realize both sides have a lot in common and hate fighting, and steal Trigun‘s ending.” Sans the purloined finish, I’m sure you can think of at least a dozen anime that follow that pattern, and believe me, most of those titles you thought of probably execute it better.

The borrowing and general crappiness aren’t just limited to the plot. Abel Nightroad is what you would get if you combine Vash the Stampede and Alucard and then take out everything that made those characters special. Characters appear, leave, and return, never giving us a reason to care about them and never getting any meaningful backstory. Even the characters who stick around are irritating. If Esther and the Pope spent as much time talking about themselves as they did whining, I wouldn’t have any complaints about their characters.

In great Gonzo fashion, the plot and characters were butchered, but at least they didn’t skimp on the animation. Combining CGI with traditional animation in classic “love it or hate it” style, Trinity Blood is a typical Gonzo animation job. The action isn’t bad, but most of it isn’t anything special, and we’ve seen better from Gonzo. Musically, there are some good moments, but that’s the only apology you’ll get from me regarding Trinity Blood. Even though the plot is corny, and the characters are meaningless, at least the show doesn’t assault the senses.

Plot and characters are much more important than action and animation quality, and originality is the most important trait of all. With those guidelines, it’s easy to see why Trinity Blood doesn’t measure up. If you’re an action junkie, a vampire fan, and can stomach the blatant plagiarism, Trinity Blood is a decent way to pass the time. For the rest of us, it’s only an exercise for our cynicism.

The Rating: 3

Reviewed by: Kuma

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