Seraph of the End, based on the manga of the same name written by Takaya Kagami and illustrated by Yamato Yamamoto, is a story of humans versus vampire in a battle of survival after a man-made virus wipes out the majority of the human population. Currently running in Jump SQ along-side series such as Blue Exorcist (Ao no Exorcist), Seraph of the End is also available in English via Viz Media.
Attack on Titan (Shingeki no Kyojin) producers, Wit Studio, are helming this adaptation with Daisuke Tokudo debuting as a director. We’re certainly in safe hands production wise with Wit Studio, so expect some high quality visuals, but the big question mark is in the director and whether he can match of the quality that the manga brings.
Not the strongest start for an anime in the first episode of Seraph of the End, the manga handled the opening better by really showing off the grit and darkness that this series is all about. The anime didn’t express the desperate need for escape, feeling far too light hearted given the circumstances that the characters were in. The tone of the series does improve towards the end of the episode and in future episodes, but there is still this light hearted feeling that keeps holding the series back from its dark and gritty origins. Don’t be put off by the sudden high school setting as this is just a small part of the story used primarily for introducing new characters.
Visually the series starts strong with some great character designs and a very picture book-esque artwork for backgrounds. While the background artwork is very appealing to the eyes, it doesn’t really fit the style and mood of the series, only serving to further the light heartedness of the series.
Overall the start of Seraph of the End has been quite underwhelming, as a fan of the manga I can only hope they work on the tone of the series to match that of the manga. A fairly faithful adaptation so far, save for the tone, with more to come.