Mayonaka No Tantei Night Walker (OVA)

Title:Mayonaka No Tantei Night Walker (OVA)
Night Walker -真夜中の探偵- (OVA)
Nightwalker (OVA)
Nightwalker: Midnight Detective
Keywords: , , , , , ,
Notables: OOTANI Ikue
TANAKA Hideyuki

Shido, a vampire turned private investigator, battles to save humans from the macabre "nightbreeds." He is joined by the police detective Yayoi, the devil-sprite Guni, and his office aid, the high school girl Riho-chan. Now the vampire lord Cain has returned and wants Shido to abandon the humans for the "Golden Dawn". Can Shido overcome his vampire instincts? Will Riho be able to handle working with a vampire?

[4 OAV episodes. The series has been licensed for R1 by Central Park Media. The OAV's were later aired on TV along with 8 new episodes made for TV (making for 12 total episodes). ]
OverallArtAnimationCharacter Design MusicSeries StoryEpisode StoryReviewer
Buy 6 6 6 5 0 0 KBanger1 [series:311#1694]
Since I'm into gothic themes (especially vampires), I'd like to say that this title is a buy just because it's cheap. If you're not into vampire anime, then this isn't for you. For vamp fans, this title is ok compared to others like VHD or Blood. NightWalker comes in 2 DVDs. The first dvd, "Midnight Detective", was more comedic than the last disc. We follow a vampire detective, his hot police friend, and his charming partner, along with some green fairy. The real story unfolds along the way and the series really gets going on the 2nd dvd. If I watched the last episode alone without the other episodes, I'd get hooked even faster than I did before.
The animation and art are a bit drab. Even though I love the old school anime, this was one of those titles which rely on story than impressive animation. Also, don't expect a lot of vampire action (like bloodsucking, etc.) in NightWalker. The protagonist, the vampire det., is quite the cornball until the 2nd dvd which he gets more serious and then the rest of his past gets exploited. I was quite impressed how the story kept me interested to complete the series. If the story was bad, I would have rated this "Watch". A nice addition to your collection and a short OVA to boot. Another OVA that deserves a sequel.

Last updated Tuesday, July 18 2006. Created Tuesday, July 18 2006.
Buy 8 8 7 8 6 10 Anonymous #1543 [series:311#1543]
First of all, Nightwalker had nudity and, i nthe first few episodes, extreme-ish violence. Also, in the last few episodes, shounen-ai (implied male/male relationship, but nothing graphic at all.)
I really love this series, though. The overall series story...there really...isn't much of one. It seems like there ALMOST was one, but it never quite happened.
This anime seems to have two different parts. The first tape (there are three tapes) has darker character designs and very graphic violence. There's also something about a Golden Dawn that SOUNDS really cool...but we never hear anything about it. It just kind of stops abruptly.
The last two tapes area little different. Instead of a long, drawn out storyline, there's kind of a "monster of the day" storyline, but
it works really well. There's an 'in the background' storyline too, about the main character, Shido's, past and the vampire who turned him Cain.
(By the way, I am CONVINCED that Cain IS Lestat. I swear it. He's got the hair and the clothes and the attitude...heck, Shido's a bit like Louis, too, only much less dark. That should say something to Ann Rice fans.)
This second portion of the series has much lighter character designs, too. Cain and Yayoi, Shido's partner, go through the biggest changes. Yayoi's hair goes from red to black and she gets a better, but still slightly indecent, outfit. Cain suddenly looks MUCH younger, his hair goes from brownish to suddenly blonde and flowing (Lestat! Lestat!). Basically Cain goes from creepy to bishy in the snap of your fingers. Still creepy though.
This second part is also where the shounen-ai starts coming in, but it's barely there in the storyline. It's acctually just in the past of Shido's past, so you shouldn't be very bothered, even if you're not really into that kinda thing.
I acctually have a theory that the first tape was aimed at boys and the second half aimed at girls.
Anyway, the best part of this second part of the series is the incredible and often touching or sad stoylines. The very best episode, in my opinion, in one were a certain character (not Shido!) battles between her human side and vampire side, and she's forced to make a decision, through her friend, about how she'll live her new life.
Another great episode (Tears of an Angel) is actually very sad, and makes you acctually feel a bit sorry for one of the demons Shido fights.
The end is a little disappointing...okay, it's alot disappointing. I wont give anything away, but it's weird, annoying, and then, suddenly, random. No explainations or leading-intos or reasons why a character that DIED is suddenly alive and well and kissing Shido.
Basically, this had the potention to become a GREAT series, but instead, it's justa GOOD series. Alot about the story is really random, abrupt, and without explaination or solution. It made me wondering if it were based off a longer manga or an OAV, but now I'm not sure, because I've never heard of either of those things concerning Nightwalker. If there WERE Nightwalker manga, I'd buy it in a second, though.
Basically, buy it for the pretty boys, the pretty girls, the pretty song, and the pretty/no-so-pretty-but-still-meaningful episode stories. But if you're expecting something fantastic, you need to lower your hopes a tad. The whole main storyline (...was there one?) is badly thought out, rushed at the end (in ONE episode) and seems to be...well...cliche. I mean, Shido's little internal speeches border on BAD GOTH POETRY. They're REALLY cliche. But sometimes I like to laugh at the clicheness, and my friends and I all find it HILARIOUS that Shido has a bad habit of walking cool-ly off into the shadows...LEAVING THE PEOPLE HE WAS TRYING TO SAVE DYING WOUNDED BEHIND HIM...while making a bad speech about how he is doomed once again to walk the shadows of the night blah blah blah.
I guess, buy this for laughs, pretty people, and twistedly poignant stories (the mother and child story...ahhh!). But when it all comes down to it, only take this series half seriously.

Last updated Saturday, August 14 2004. Created Saturday, August 14 2004.
Rent 8 8 8 8 8 8 AstroNerdBoy [series:311#436]

I don't like vampire stuff, but a co-worker of mine got his wife to pick him up some anime titles for his birthday. This was one of those titles and he lent the first DVD to me. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed it.

The first four episodes on the DVD (the actual OAV series) cover what I would call the "Golden Dawn" arc. Here we learn about the vampire Shido and his crew as well as the night breed, a type of monster that needs to possess human bodies to live. We also learn of the vampire lord Cain who made Shido a vampire. Sadly we never learn anything about the Golden Dawn beyond the fact that it had something to do with the breed and humans.

My favorite character had to be the devil-sprite Guni. She helped provide some lighter moments in what would otherwise be a very dark series. She's very loyal to Shido and willing to protect him with her life. She also likes to get into humorous arguments with the teen girl Riho-chan though the two really do like each other a lot.

DVD-wise, we have a pretty standard domestication of an anime title. The subtitles are liberally translated in spots. But the 6-episodes per disc will make many feel happy (this includes the first 2 TV episodes which are included in another review).

Bottom line: Vampire lovers will enjoy this I'm sure. Those who don't like horror or vampire stuff will be pleasantly surprised at some of the lighter elements which keep this from being to dark.

Last updated Tuesday, September 23 2003. Created Thursday, September 18 2003.

Buy 7 7 7 7 8 8 Sesen Kelader [series:311#471]
There seems to be two manufacturing period of this series. The older one looks not so gorgeous, and the story is also not very great. The newer one, however, looks much better and have astonishing story.
It's similar to many other vampire animes. One vampire swears to defend the human race and take down the evil. It aslo bears some ideas of Vampire Princess Miyu. The fate the main characters have, and the pain to live not human-like not evil-like. In the newer nightwalker episodes, each is its own story yet connected to one each other. Most endings of episode are not happy, instead are pretty sorrowful or sad.
Nighwalker gives the question: what is right and what is wrong? The main character dreams something that terrifies him at the end. Yet he convinces himself to continue the way he lives and finds his answer in the future.
It's a great anime.

Last updated Saturday, January 04 2003. Created Saturday, January 04 2003.
Buy 8 7 8 8 7 Midnighter [series:311#94]
I'm a sucker for vampire tales (and I'm not even a goth...go figure) so I thouroughly enjoyed Nightwalker.
Although we've seen it all before,(Vampire Princess Miyu comes to does any Anne Rice novel...)
Nightwalker still manages to be engaging. Maybe it's the character designs, a sort gothic shoujo style. Shido manages to look perpetually cool in his combination of victorian dress and modern shades, and the demons, while occasionally silly, generally look acceptably other-worldly. Maybe it's the tone set by Buck Tick's moody industrial opening. The song was in my head for days. Maybe it was just that Nightwalker seemed to have more heart than 1985's Vampire Hunter D or 1999's Blood: The Last Vampire.
In any case, Nightwalker makes up for unimpressive animation with a good cast of characters, moody musical scores, and clever stories. The writing provides us with interesting concepts. A demonically possessed star who's abandoned by the demon for her protoge kills herself because of the rejection,
A demon dies in human form because it WANTS to be human, and a woman who killed her husband and then blinded herself to it, metaphorically and physically. The final episode is an all out worst case scenario similar to Batman: The Animated Series' episode "Over the Edge" in which everything we love about our characters strained to the breaking point.
Unfortunately the animation is cheap looking and noticable choppy. Gunni (Shido's lil' flying elf sidekick) apparently never has to flap her wings to fly, because she just levitates motionlessly. The ambitious battle scenes suffer from this, too often resorting to static shots or re-used footage. Which is too bad, because they are well choreographed. Still, the series is still a visually appealing show because of the dark back grounds and interesting character designs.
Overall, Nightwalker falls somewhere between a Buy and a Rent, depending on taste. Vampire fans may want to purchase it, while more casual fans may be satisfied with just watching it once.

Last updated Wednesday, September 18 2002. Created Wednesday, September 18 2002.
Watch 7 6 4 6 7 Courtney [series:311#80]
What can be said about NIGHTWALKER? How about tired, repetitive, even predictable at times. That's not to say it's a horrible series that isn't worth watching, it's more of an Anime for those who are looking for something to watch with a gothic feel.
The character designs are way too typical with Shido, a hero who's hurting on the inside and his coterie made up of smart-ass sprites (Gumi the waste of space), the typical school girl with a crush who gets pulled into this dark world, and a sultry detective who's almost completely useless (for all the fuss she made about being a special agent with a super gun it would have been nice if either proved to be at all helpful) save for being a source of blood.
The only truly redeeming quality of the entire series is the individual plots of all the episodes. The often show just how evil humans can be without the help of demons and monsters and are filled with the occasional creative twist that compels you to see where they're going with it.
NIGHTWALKER isn't something you should seek out to own, more rent if you are having a Halloween party or occasion that calls for a little suspense and gore. Not a bad series, but not that good either.
Other tales of suspense and the supernatural:

Last updated Sunday, December 02 2001. Created Wednesday, October 10 2001.
Watch 7 7 7 7 Kaitou Juliet [series:311#137]

I've never been much into vampires, but this series goes down pretty well. There's enough humor to keep it from becoming interminably gloomy, the characters are likeable, and the fight scenes are great fun. (Shido makes weapons out of his own blood—extra points for coolness!) This is not to say that it isn't still pretty dark and violent at times, though.

Most of the episodes have strong morality-play elements as people get trapped by giving in to their own dark desires. However, the overarching storyline is a bit disorganized; they keep making ominous references to "the Golden Dawn," which raises expectations, but nothing ever happens. Also the mystery of Shido's lost memory is never fully solved. This made me wonder if the series was based on a longer manga, or if more episodes are planned (I have seen 12). The very end of the last episode even takes an unexpected turn into romantic comedy, which is a bit bizarre.

Bottom line: This is a strange hybrid, but most people will probably find something to like here. Avoid it if you're squeamish, however.

Last updated Friday, March 15 2002. Created Wednesday, July 25 2001.

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