Following the defeat and death of Dracula last season, Trevor and Sypha are traveling the world like Scooby and the gang putting down all kinds of vicious night beasts that roam the land. Alucard has elected to stay behind in his father’s castle, only to take on a pair of learners who come to him for help. Isaac hits the road to return to Europe, his sights set on revenge and gathering up an army of night beasts to help him. Hector is imprisoned by Carmilla and her vampire sisters who must devise a devilishly devious scheme to gain control of him and his ability to make demons.
None of these stories intersect, by the way… it’s like watching the early seasons of Game of Thrones, nudity, cursing, and violent gore included. There are four different storylines going on and none of them influence the others, however, they all do hit on some similar themes. Hector and Alucard are falling while Trevor, Sypha, and Isaac are rising.
All in all, it’s pretty great television.
The action and animation is gloriously rendered, colorful, frenetic, and super violent. The set pieces are exploding with energy that can only be shown in gloriously over-exaggerated animation.
Coupled with this the fact that the writing on the show is top notch. These characters, both good and evil, are well rounded and you always know what they want even if it’s a simple motivation of beer and comfort or something huge like taking over all of Europe with hell beasts.
There is a monologue in one episode where a Hell beast that can speak tells Isaac about what his life was like before he died and was sent to Hell and it is absolutely chilling.
Although I feel like I am constantly repeating this praise on multiple shows, the thing I like about this show is that every single one of the characters from the heroes to the villains are all appealing in certain ways. The vampire sisters are arguably the most repellant characters on the show, and yet you cannot help but admire their intelligence and camaraderie. Isaac brings demons to life and wants to steamroll them over the entire continent, yet he finds slavery morally repugnant and has such a savage force of will about him. Even the mad monks who serve as the primary antagonists of Sypha and Trevore’s adventure are portrayed more as victims than villians and I find that so refreshing… there is no one on this show that you completely hate.
If I had one complaint about this season, it is that the entire run seemed dedicated to setting up things that are yet to come… building the chessboard for the next season. This is very apparent early on in the series when very little progression seems to be happening and, in an quick about-face, the final few episodes explode with story and action.
It’s not a major complaint because, as I said, I find the series, characters, and writing fascinating and fun. I enjoy how everything moves forward without falling back to where the series has been (although it does flirt with the idea at one point and might be sitting on it for later).
There are a number of stellar WTF moments in this season two… one of which is reserved for Alucard in the final episode which results in him being more alone than he’s ever been. I suspect it may even be setting him up as a future antagonist for Trevor and Sypha which, I won’t lie… would be awesome and tragic.
Castlevania is such a great show and, arguably, the greatest adaptation of a videogame ever created. I was confused why it came back for a third season, but now I cannot wait until the fourth.