-The Pharaoh Sails to Orion by Nightwish

The schoolyear is drawing to a close. Summer comes quickly, and with it comes all the decisions one has to make. Despite it being a time for relaxation, many times summer is a time for change as well: new haircuts, new attitudes, new interests, and new paths in life.

One such new path is approaching me.

I’d not like to talk about it yet so that I don’t preempt anything—second-guessing God and your destiny is not a very smart thing to do. However, things seem to be pointing in a particular direction, and I should find out what steps to take within the next few days. I might talk about it here soon. For once, at least, I’m glad that a definite direction is presenting itself, and I don’t have to grope about in the dark so much.

I’ll talk about it in detail eventually.

Vampire Hunter D

As I was browsing Youtube for Nightwish videos, I came across this AMV:

I’d heard of Vampire Hunter D before, though I was rather sick of vampires in fiction and didn’t like how they’d become sexy, super-powerful creatures of the night instead of the bloodsucking corpses they used to be. However, I was just taken in by how well-animated this clip was and decided to check it out.

At first I made the mistake of just grabbing the original 1985 Vampire Hunter D. It was indeed pretty cool, though I didn’t enjoy it as much as the movie depicted in the above video, which is entitled Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, and was released in 2000.

The basic premise: 12,000 years into the future, the world is a mess of post-apocalyptic ruins. The race of vampires rose to prominence after humanity blasted itself back to the Stone Age in a nuclear war. Vampires brought back technology to the world, and for a time, humanity and the people of the night lived in peace. However, many of the vampires began to become exceedingly tyrannical and bloodthirsty, preying on the humans like cattle and kidnapping their women. Some vampires fell in love with human women and had children by them, resulting in half-vampires—Dunpeals. (Dunpeal was the term used in Bloodlust; the 1985 movie used Dhampyr, which I think sounds cooler.)

Dunpeals aren’t like Blade at all—they’re half-breeds through and through, never belonging to either vampires or humans. They are still weakened by sunlight (though they can stand it much longer than true vampires, who catch fire almost immediately), and can still get tempted by bloodthirst.

The protagonist, D, is a vampire hunter. (Hence the title) He’s considered to be the best hunter there is, yet most humans distrust him and even threaten him at gunpoint. D is a skilled swordsman, using a curved longsword to fight. His left hand houses a symbiont who serves as his companion and assistant, providing him with various supernatural powers.

In Bloodlust, D is sent to retrieve a girl who seems to have been kidnapped by a vampire, Baron Meyer Links. As D pursues the Baron’s carriage, he encounters the Marcus Brothers, a group of vampire hunters who have also been hired by the girl’s family to pursue the Baron.

Bloodlust was produced in English, so it isn’t a dub-over. The voice acting is top-notch, and so is the animation. The animation is styled to resemble the original character designer’s style. (The designer, Yoshitaka Amano, is also famous for his character designs for the older Final Fantasy games). I was really happy with Bloodlust, especially since it’s one of the few recent anime productions I’ve seen that doesn’t have “quality” moments like these:

Quality Moments I Can See You

Of course, I may be knocking on Naruto too harshly, but it is after all, hundreds of episodes long. 😛

That said, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust is definitely a good watch.

[The Cost of Building a Gundam]

Mecha fans, I’m sorry to disappoint you. According to this site, a science group attempted to calculate the price of building a Gundam (The RX-78-2 Gundam in the first series). It costs over US$ 700 million—almost as much as an Arleigh Burke-class destroyer (a US and Japanese navy ship)—without weapons, jump jets, or combat-grade armor. It would also be too massive for the human-shaped frame to support. The pressure it exerts on the ground would cause the Gundam to sink into almost any surface.

If humanoid mecha were to be invented in the near future, I’d expect them to be much smaller—probably not unlike the Armored Slaves from [Full Metal Panic!].

Now excuse me while I get back to work. Lots of stuff to check.

At the Crossroads,

Your Black Lion


~ by J. R. R. Flores on January 13, 2008.

One Response to “Crossroads”

  1. Bloodlust is a slick production. The novels can be found in English translation, and they’re not bad as light sci-fi/horror fare, though I don’t think the translation’s that good. Too much faux-medieval English.

    As for realistic mecha, I have one word for you: Gasaraki. Sort of.

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