Despite claiming to desire a trouble-free life, 15-year-old Mahiru rescues a stray cat and names it Kuro. He also lives alone, excels at cooking and housework, and constantly volunteers for jobs/helping out because he….somehow sees taking on extra work as “the least troublesome thing”.
He comes home from work to find that “Kuro” has inexplicably turned into a young man. The man introduces himself as a “shut-in vampire,” who turns into a cat when exposed to sunlight. When Mahiru accidentaly speaks the vampire’s true name, (which turns out to in fact be “Kuro”) he winds up becoming his temporary master. Kuro reassures Mahiru that the contract will be cancelled as long as he doesn’t drink any of Mahiru’s blood within a 24-hour period.
Mahiru responds to this by…attempting to convince his friends that his new cat is a vampire. The group is accosted by a mysterious man, who reveals himself as another vampire when he attacks Mahiru’s friend Ryuusei. Mahiru attacks him in return, and is saved by Kuro, who explains that he has not drunk blood in many hundreds of years and cannot hope to win this battle. Mahiru unthinkingly offers Kuro his blood, finalizing their contract and making Kuro Mahiru’s “Servamp”. The strengthened Kuro easily defeats the enemy vampire, but is stopped by Mahiru before he can kill him. The weakened enemy reverts into a plush doll form, and announces that he is the Servamp of a man named Tsubaki, who wants to “kill the world”.
The worst thing about Servamp wasn’t its cliched plot, the unlikeable, constantly arguing characters or the fact that everyone’s wardrobe (sans Mahiru’s) looks like they raided a Hot Topic clearance sale. No, the worst part about Servamp was how darn old this show made me feel.
Seven or eight years ago, I would have loved Servamp. I would have written endless fanfics shipping Mahiru and Kuro together while arguing which out of the (mostly yet unintroduced) cast full of pretty boys was my one true husband. But the sad truth is, I’ve just outgrown this kind of show. I don’t have patience anymore to keep up with a series of fights with increasingly bizarre enemies while keeping my ears open for any hint of affection between the two leads. (Especially when I felt like the ship was being forced down my throat, with the frequent long looks and the bondage imagery used when the contract is sealed.) So, instead, I’ll just write this First Impression of all the things I didn’t like about Servamp.
First, the less-bad. Mahiru is not actually that terrible of a main character – his “volunteers for everything because he sees it as simplest” shtick is a bit confusing, but still sorta cute. I liked when he used the time the rest of his classmates spent arguing about who would make cookies to….well, make cookies. However, put Mahiru and the utterly unlikable Kuro together, and you have a boring, annoying duo whose interactions are limited to “yelling, bickering and more yelling”.
The episode’s enemy was even worse. It is not the early 2000s. Edgy, giggling sadists in tophats are not cool. (They were never cool.) Despite being in a good half of the episode, the man (who was never even NAMED) got no development beyond “hates Kuro, likes blood”. Also, his voice and especially laugh were extremely annoying, so that’s another point against him.
I’m sure there is some sort of complicated world behind Servamp, with lots of rules and tons of characters even more colorful than the ones introduced. Do I think this show is going to execute that world, those rules or characters well? No. No, I don’t. I liked pretty much nothing about the first episode, and have no interest in continuing to follow the adventures of bickering Hot Topic advertisements.
Out of 5 Dios: