Cover of first volume of Vampire Knight released in Japan by Hakusensha on July 5, 2005
|Genre||School story, Romance, Supernatural, Action, Tragedy|
|Written by||Matsuri Hino|
|English publisher|| Madman Entertainment
|English magazine||Shojo Beat|
|Original run||November 24, 2004 – May 24, 2013|
|Anime television series|
|Directed by||Kiyoko Sayama|
|Licensed by|| Viz Media
|English network|| Neon Alley
|Original run||April 7, 2008 – June 30, 2008|
|Anime television series|
|Vampire Knight Guilty|
|Licensed by||Viz Media|
|Original run||October 6, 2008 – December 29, 2008|
Vampire Knight (ヴァンパイア騎士 Vanpaia Naito ) is a shōjo manga series written by Matsuri Hino. The series premiered in the January 2005 issue of LaLa magazine and has officially ended. Chapters are collected and published in collected volumes by Hakusensha, with seventeen volumes currently released in Japan. The manga series is licensed in English by Viz Media, who has released fifteen volumes so far. The English adaptation premiered in the July 2006 issue of Viz's Shojo Beat magazine, with the collected volumes being published on a quarterly basis.
Two drama CDs were created for the series, as well as a twenty-six episode anime adaptation. Produced by Studio Deen, the anime series' first season aired in Japan on TV Tokyo between April 8, 2008 and July 1, 2008. The second season, aired on the same station from October 7, 2008 and December 30, 2008. The anime uses many of the same voice actors as were used for the drama CDs. The anime adaptations were licensed for release in North America by Viz Media, the DVD released on July 20, 2010.
Yuki's earliest memory is of a stormy night in winter, where she was attacked by a vampire... And then rescued by another. Now 10 years later, Yuki Cross, the adopted daughter of the headmaster of Cross Academy, Kaien Cross, has grown up and become a guardian of the vampire race, protecting her childhood crush, Kaname, from discovery as he leads a group of vampires at the elite boarding school. But also at her side is Zero Kiryu, a childhood friend whose hatred for the creatures that destroyed everything he held dear leaves him determined never to trust them. This coexisting arrangement seems all well and good, but have the vampires truly renounced their murderous ways, or is there a darker truth behind their actions? Because in this world of secrets, nothing is as it seems. And the price of misplaced trust may even be worse than death.
- Yuki Cross/Kuran is the main female protagonist of the series. She is initially established as a human at the beginning of the story. She has no memories of her past prior to a stormy night, when she is almost devoured by a bloodthirsty vampire, 10 years ago. Yuki wonders about her mysterious connection to a beautiful and charming vampire named Kaname Kuran, the person who saved her life and whom she is in love with. Later in the series, she begins to remember her past, and begins suffering from hallucinations, her mind slowly plunging deeper into corruption. With no options left, Kaname is forced to awaken her before she loses herself to the hallucinations. Upon awakening, Yuki recalls her missing memories and regains her true identity. She is actually a pure-blood princess and is the secret daughter of Haruka and Juri Kuran and younger sister, as well as fiancé, of Kaname Kuran. She and her fiancé are officially the last remaining living Purebloods of the Kuran family and are part of the remaining seven royal Pureblood clans. At the end of the story, she is the mother of two unnamed children. She has a daughter with Kaname and a son with Zero. Yuki's daughter is adopted by Zero as her foster father while her real father is in slumber.
- Zero Kiryu is one of the main characters of Vampire Knight and the only Vampire Hunter/Vampire in the entire series. Zero is Yuki's childhood friend of 4 years and the only other Cross Academy Guardian. As a Vampire Hunter, Zero wields the Bloody Rose as his main weapon, an anti-vampire gun. He is the adopted son of Kaien Cross, the headmaster of Cross Academy. Before that, he was born into a vampire hunter family. He lost his family members and was turned into a level E vampire by a pure-blood, Hio Shizuka (also known as the "Mad Blooming Princess"). He has held a strong hatred and disgust to vampires ever since. When he discovers that Yuuki is actually a pureblood vampire and Kaname's sister he becomes very angry and cuts all ties with Yuuki with a kiss, saying farewell. Later on, when Yuuki leaves the academy with Kaname, he becomes depressed and bloodthirsty without Yuuki. When Yuuki and he meet again, he ignores her and treats her like the other vampires. When Kaname betrays Yuuki and goes after all the purebloods, he helps Yuuki to try and stop Kaname. They soon start to get close once again and even share a kiss during a masquerade ball. Then, Yuuki steals Zero's memory of ever loving and caring for her. When he wakes up he does not recognize Yuuki at all and tells her to leave him alone. Later on, he remembers Yuuki by retrieving from Yuuki the memories from the past. When Kaname returns, Yuuki returns to him in order to attempt to turn Kaname into a human, stopping/saving him from his suicide mission. When Kaname sacrifices himself, his last words to Zero and Yuuki are, " I want you two to be together ". After Kaname falls into slumber, Zero begs Yuuki to be with him, Yuuki remains mute still distraught from Kaname's 'slumber'. Later on in the manga, it shows that some time has passed and Zero and Yuuki have lived happily together with two children, one of which is Zero's (the boy) and one that is Kaname's (the girl; Kaname and Yuuki slept together the night before he sacrificed himself). It is implied that Zero died of old age, since he was not a pureblood vampire but a level D, but he died happily knowing that Yuuki and him lived a happy life.
- Kaname Kuran is a Pureblood vampire, the president of the moon dorm, and the well respected king of the vampire society. He is the one who saved Yuki from a level E vampire when she was a child 10 years ago. When Yuki reawakens as a vampire, she recalls that Kaname is her fiancé. It is later revealed that Kaname is the first ancestor of the Kuran family, as well as one of the first founders of the vampire race, and is actually over 10,000 years old. Due to his weakened state after being revived, Kaname had transformed his body into that of an infant, and subsequently, his memories were repressed. His life was entrusted to Haruka and Juri Kuran, who raised him as their son that Rido had taken and killed. Kaname is the father to one of Yuki's two children, and in the end of the story, Yuki sacrifices herself to revive Kaname as a human.
- Kaien Cross is both the Headmaster of Cross Academy, and current head of the Vampire Hunters Association. He is the guardian of Zero Kiryu and adoptive father of Yuki Cross, the heroine of the story. Kaien is a very strong hunter, known as the best until he retired. Kaien is unusual amongst the vampire hunters as he appears to have stopped physically aging, appearing to be a man in his mid-twenties despite being two hundred years old. They have been studying his DNA, which he is said to possess extremely high amounts of vampire DNA that stopped his aging and causes Zero to confuse him with that of a vampire's aura. Like all vampire hunters, Kaien is able to wield anti-vampire weapons and carries a sword hidden in a cane and he has an acute smell that senses vampires. Kaien is considered the legend of vampire hunters.
- Rido Kuran was a Pureblood vampire and one of the major antagonists of the Vampire Knight series. He was the eldest brother of Haruka and Juri Kuran, and was Shizuka Hio's fiancé. With his reappearance, it was revealed that he was the true head of the Kuran family, not Kaname. He was also the uncle of Kaname and Yuki and the illegitimate father of Senri Shiki. As Rido is the biggest threat to Yuki's live hood, Kaname sees him as the enemy he has to eradicate at all costs. Rido was the person who sacrificed the life of Yuki's biological brother Kaname to reawaken the powerful ancestor Kaname from his thousand years of slumber. Technically making himself Kaname's master, Rido thought he could enslave the ancestor Kaname into listening to his every order. However, his plans backfires and was instead slashed into pieces by young ancestor Kaname. Taking him 10 years to regenerate his body. He comes back attempting to kill her once more.
- Shizuka Hio was the Pureblood vampire who bit Zero Kiryu. Even for a Pureblood, her fellow vampires felt uneasy around her and referred to her as the "Flowers-blooming-out-of-season princess" or "Kuruizaki-hime." She bore a slight resemblance to her distant relative, Maria Kurenai.
The first chapter of Matsuri Hino's Vampire Knight premiered in the January 2005 issue of LaLa. The individual chapters are being collected and published in tankōbon volumes by Hakusensha, with seventeen volumes released in Japan as of December 2012[update]. The series is licensed for an English language release in North America by Viz Media. In addition to publishing the individual volumes, the series was serialized in Viz's Shojo Beat manga anthology from the July 2006 issue until the magazine was discontinued after the August 2009 issue. It is licensed for English release in Australia and New Zealand by Madman Entertainment, which has released fifteen volumes as of December 2011[update]. The eighteenth volume will come out in English on May 6, 2014.
Two drama CDs have been released for Vampire Knight. The first, LaLa Kirameki, was released as an extra with the September 2005 issue of LaLa. The second, Vampire Knight Midnight CD-Pack, was released only via mail order.
Studio Deen produced a twenty-six episode anime adaptation of the Vampire Knight manga, using many of the same voice actors featured on the drama CDs and directed by Kiyoko Sayama. The episodes started airing on TV Tokyo in Japan on April 7, 2008 and ran until the season conclusion on June 30, 2008. The episodes were also aired at later dates on TV Aichi, TV Hokkaido, TV Osaka, TV Setouchi, and TVQ Kyushu Broadcasting Co. The second season, named Vampire Knight Guilty, premiered on the same station October 6, 2008. The final episode aired on December 29, 2008. On July 24, 2009, Viz Media announced it had acquired the license for the Vampire Knight anime and would begin releasing it to DVD on July 20, 2010. In the UK, the first volume was officially released on DVD via Manga Entertainment on November 22, 2010. In Australia, ABC3 began airing the series (English-language version) in March 2011 and began repeats on July 3 later that year.
The series uses four pieces of theme music. The opening themes of both the first and second season are performed by the duo On/Off, with "Futatsu no Kodō to Akai Tsumi" (ふたつの鼓動と赤い罪) as the opening for the first season, and "Rinne Rondo" (輪廻 -ロンド-Rinne) as the opening for the second. Kanon Wakeshima performs the first season ending theme, "Still Doll", and also the second season's ending theme "Suna no Oshiro" (砂のお城). The soundtrack is composed by Takefumi Haketa and consists of 30 tracks (including the opening theme and ending theme).
Two light novels created by Matsuri Hino and Ayuna Fujisaki were published in Japan by Hakusensha in 2008. Both novels feature two individual side-stories that use the characters of the manga, but are not specifically based on chapters from the series. The first novel, Vampire Knight: Ice Blue's Sin (ヴァンパイア騎士 憂氷の罪 Vanpaia Naito: Aisu Burū no Tsumi ), was published on April 5, 2008. The first story within the novel looks at an incident that occurred at Cross Academy in the year preceding Yuki's arrival, while the second story details an accident that occurred while Zero was still in training to be a vampire hunter.
The second novel, Vampire Knight: Noir's Trap (ヴァンパイア騎士 凝黒の罠 Vanpaia Naito: Nowāru no Wana ), was published on October 3, 2008. The story focuses on two minor characters from the manga, following their unrequited love at Cross Academy, as well as detailing the accident that happened when Kain and Ruka go to visit Senri and Rima's modeling studio.
In November 2008, the official Vampire Knight, titled Vampire Knight Fanbook: Cross (ヴァンパイア騎士 ファンブックX Vanpaia Naito Fanbukku Kurosu ), was published in Japan. In addition to providing additional information about the series characters and story, it includes images and details from Hino's storyboard. The fanbook has been licensed by Viz Media and was released on October 19, 2010.
A 94 page Matsuri Hino Illustrations Vampire Knight was released on July 5, 2010, the artwork included one original double page spread created for the Artbook and a compilation of 100 previously released Vampire Knight color artworks.
- Voice Actors Named for Animated Series Vampire Knight. Dreadcentral.com (2010-03-25). Retrieved on 2012-08-05.
- "Vampire Knight 2nd Season to Air in Japan in October". Anime News Network. 2008-06-23. Retrieved 2008-08-07.
- "Vampire Knight Guilty Sequel's Promo Video Streamed". Anime News Network. 2008-08-26. Retrieved 2008-08-26.
- "Vampire Knight Licensed by Viz Media". Anime News Network. Retrieved July 24, 2009.
- "Vampire Knight News". Shojo Beat 5 (1): 288. January 2009. ISSN 1932-1600.
- "Vampire Knight Comic" (in Japanese). Hakusensha. Retrieved 2008-10-02.[dead link]
- "ヴァンパイア騎士凝黒の罠" (in Japanese). Amazon.co.jp. Retrieved 2008-10-04.
- "Viz Gets Gente, Library Wars, Grand Guignol Orchestra, Nice to Meet You, Kamisama (Update 2)". Anime News Network. 2009-09-27. Retrieved 2010-01-14.
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