Kurozuka 02 – Highlander? Not highlander? Time and Space Confusion

Anyone else noticed that the person who made Kuromitsu a vampire had blond hair? Is that a tribute or a nod to the origin of vampire stories?

What Kuromitsu and Kuro (yeah, some kind of Japanese pun/connection, no doubt) talks and does in the show simulates much of the western vampire tales, except the setting is in Japan.

Listen to our podcast and Jeremy will tell you the exact reference this show came from, but in any case, here are some of my observations:

– Reincarnation is definitely an Eastern idea, but what if the element of vampire/eternal life is introduced? Does that breaks the pattern of reincarnation completely?

– Benkei (not Bengay) was lured into the power of that omiyuji in the distant past (Heian Era), and then in the Edo Era, he’s another famous samurai, but he’s seduced yet again by the same omiyuji, but then what was the point of trying to make him think he was Kuro?

– The actual time of the story is? We started out in the Heian Era in episode 1, and next episode we were in near the end Edo era, which was more than a half centuries later, and then at the end of episode 2, we’re in post-apocalyptic world? Chrono Trigger anyone? Or Fist of the North Star (just for the world), anyone?

There are more questions, really, such as who is who after many years of living?

In episode 1, the troops chasing Yushitsune are not humans; they are demon-like. But Yoshitsune becomes more of a demon than all of them as he takes them out. He and Kuromitsu (god damn Romi is hot) swap AIDS I mean blood and he’s in a way, more powerful than the demons and that undead Omiyuji chasing him. But he gets his head cut off – ala highlander style sure-death, right? But no, he wakes up in the future, so are we seeing a flash back from him? Has he lived so long that he honestly doesn’t remember what’s happening? Then why the shocked face upon seeing the future world?

Does he reincarnates instead of being a real vampire? In that case, where is he now? His clothing changes through time, and at the end of episode two, he dressed sorta Fish of the North Starish.

My thought is this: this guy has probably lost his mind, and he cannot die even if someone cuts off his head, because we see that in the Edo era, he got his head cut off but he lives. However, this show is a little big unforgiving as we’re not told as how he goes through time so far, or perhaps he’s having a flashback.

I think the influence from Highlander is unmistakable. We can only hope all the cheesiness from Highlander does not apply here.

This is a wonderful artistic piece and despite its time altering elements, it’s not that confusing (for anime veterans at least). The Noh atmosphere, the drama, the voice acting, the conflicts and the animation are all top notch.

Don’t you just love it when Madhouse gets kick-ass serious? When the DVDs come out I’ll definitely purchase them, even if ultimately the story becomes closer to Ninja Scroll than Claymore.

3 thoughts on “Kurozuka 02 – Highlander? Not highlander? Time and Space Confusion”

  1. I was confused as hell by the time-jumping in this ep.

    HOWEVER

    It has the potential to be a great romance story and the action is superb. The atmospherics and music are, as you say, top notch too. I just hope the plot doesn’t become a tangled mess of flashbacks and time-jumps.

  2. @ Martin – well, actually I guess anyone can get quite confused by it. One moment he’s in Heian, next he’s in Edo, and then he’s in post apocalypse. I simply just take he present coordinate (or wherever he is near the end/by the end of the show) as present. Anyway, watch episode 3 and it’s a lot clearer.

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