Vampire Knight

Yuki's earliest memory is of a snowy night in winter, when she was attacked by one vampire and was saved by another, Kaname Kuran. Ten years later, Yuki Cross, the adopted daughter of the headmaster of Cross Academy, has grown up and become a guardian for the school, with two purposes: To protect the Day class (humans) from the Night class's (vampires) fangs and to protect the true identity of the Night class students from being discovered by the Day class students. Her fellow guardian, Zero Kiryu, a childhood friend who was born into a family of vampire hunters and whose hatred for the vampires that destroyed everything he held dear, is now determined to kill them all and never trusts them. Through a cruel twist of fate, Zero becomes a vampire himself, having been bitten by a pure blood vampire four years before.

"Vampire Knight" is by far the best series in the entire Spring 2008 anime line-up to date...no contest. It is the first new title that has me itching to see what's next. It is taking all of my control to avoid going on a spoiler frenzy. Whether or not you've read the manga, you will be pleased. But for those who have read the manga, the anime does a faithful job to its original source. As I was trying to decipher what it was about "Vampire Knight" that got me hooked beyond reproach, the best I could do was realize the similarities it shares with "Fruits Basket." Nevertheless, no comparison is needed. Animation, OP/ED songs, and voice characterizations all get passing grades. But it's the story and characters that pushes "Vampire Knight" ahead in the race. What's more, it is perfectly paced. Five episodes in, and we've already gotten through several climaxes to reach an already complex and substantial plot.

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