Sunday, May 20, 2012

Manga review: Vampire Knight, Vol. 13 by Matsuri Hino

Sequential art: Manga
Genre: YA paranormal
Format: Paperback, 200 pages
Published October 4th 2011 by VIZ Media (first published December 3rd 2010)

Blurb: Yuki is attacked by another pureblood outside a graveyard for meddling in the ways of the vampire society. Injured, she returns home to Kaname, who shares with her his past memories and the truth behind the Kuran family.

My thoughts: Admissions, reemergence and revelations is what Volume 13 of Vampire Knight is all about. Zero goes to visit Ichiru's gravesite and has what I believe is one of his strongest moments of admission (besides the earlier prison cell scene with his brother). Zero admits to his twin his wondering if he has any part of his humanity left inside of him. In ghost form, Ichiru appears and says, "I exist inside you, Zero," in what starts off this installment with a poignant touch. Ichiru goes on to tell his sibling to "think objectively" and to "live and do what I cannot." In death, the two brothers finally converse honesty with each other.

As for Yuki, her old feisty self is beginning to reemerge. After Kaname gives her the option of killing him, he gifts her with her weapon from her days as Guardian at Cross Academy. She puts the stick inside her purse and actually leaves her prison, er, home, after getting Aido to accompany her on a train ride. Against Kaname's wishes, Yuki goes out, her intention to live again clear. She visits  an old friend, a woman who was her nanny or teacher, at her gravesite (another visit to the dead). Yuki also runs into the wolf that fans will recognize as Kaname's familiar. Inside the cemetery she encounters a member of the Toma family (he really reminded me of a character from Kaori Yuki's Godchild manga series) who first threatens her, then attacks her. As Yuki bleeds, Aido panics until Zero barges in and tosses an injured Yuki over his shoulder like a sack of rice. He may think he hates her because of who she has become but his actions prove he still loves her. Yay! 

Yuki awakens inside a Hunter establishment, thirsty, and smelling Zero. She leans in towards his neck but then decides against biting him. Breaking the window, she flees, but leaves Aido behind. Poor Aido hasn't had much to do but shadow Yuki and here he gets to tell Zero the vampire hunter better go after Yuki if he loves her. Another Yay! moment. Then Zero reverts back to cold, serious hunter and arrests Aido, threatening to torture the vamp for information. Really? After the guy told you that Yuki could be yours for the taking?

Volume 13 begins to show us who the real Kaname is, I think. This segment was thoroughly confusing and I didn't really gleam anything new. Rido awakens Kaname (again-- we were shown this in Volume 12) and then through his memories, he shares parts of his past with Yuki when she returns. Once again, I found myself rereading sections, trying to understand what was going on. While I applaud Hino's attempt at making Kaname a complex character, her execution needs help. The old Kaname reveals the existence of a mystery woman who created the Hunters. Though her face is never revealed, we see part of her interactions and then she disappears. Though there was some new revelations--with another one I won't spoil but has to do with Kaname and Yuki's relationship--the slow pacing and at times stilted dialogue, did not make this a cohesive volume. I wonder if some of this has to do with the translation of the material. Again, I closed the book utterly confused. I can only hope Volume 14 may begin to address some of these problematic areas. Vampire Knight, Volume 14 will be released on July 13th.

Rating: I liked it when I understood it.

Cover comment: This one is OK, nothing new here, is similar to Volume 10's cover with Yuki and the girls.

Book source: Borrowed from library.

No comments:

Post a Comment