I don’t typically read a whole lot of manga- actually, I’ve only read two in my life- Death Note a couple years back, which I loved, and now Hellsing.
Hellsing. Whoa. I really am embarrassingly head over heels for this series. It all started when my friend Kasi lent me the anime series. She thought I would like it, and boy was she right (she may have even grown to regret it in light of my subsequent obsession xD) I had heard of Hellsing before this, and the dark art style had really grabbed me from the beginning, and I was already really feeling the opening theme (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHyqB4y-vtk – waaatch it!!). I tried to reserve judgment since this was a series centering around vampires, and as much as I love vampires (note: I really love vampires), I often feel disappointed in vampire novels/shows these days…they all try to be tres sexy and just end up…silly. But honestly, somehow I knew this was going to be awesome and non-sparkly from the outset.
I really liked how Kohta Hirano’s vampires were a mix of the classic (Alucard’s character and past is loosely based on the story of Dracula- as his name signifies if you flip it around) and the new (as the story progresses, there are numerous inhuman characters introduced aside from vampires. In addition, true vampires can only be created under specific conditions; otherwise the person bitten turns into a ghoul, a braindead zombie with a lust for flesh. Also found the way Alucard shapeshifts and unlocks power levels in order to fight to be, uhm, pretty fucking cool). The plot was constantly engaging and the cast of characters was no less so. My favorite character, hands down, was this lady:
I’m not going to beat around the bush: Integra Fairbrook Wingates Hellsing is a total badass and I may or may not be crushing on her to an unhealthy degree. The fact that she took over the Hellsing Organization at the age of 12 (12!) is slightly impressive to me. Integra’s still very young (22) when the series starts and it shows her grow and learn to be a better leader under the pressure of the war that erupts. She is so dedicated to her cause and fiercely proud to be human in the midst of this craze where every other person lusts to be immortal. Her relationship with Alucard is also very interesting, more complex than your average master-servant bond.
I did read a couple other books this month, but Hellsing was overwhelmingly the flavor of January, and apparently I had a lot to say (HA), so I’m going to leave it at that. I’d like to talk about what I read every month here, not exactly in ‘review’ format- since I hate summarizing plot and rating work on a scale makes me nervous- but in a freer format comprised of impressions, favorites, and just overall uncensored feelings on the stuff I read. Also, there may be spoilers. I will try really hard not to put them in, but I can’t promise anything except to warn you when they’re present.
Hope everyone is well, and see you next week!