Not gonna lie. My pitch for making a Castlevania Anniversary Collection post was solely aimed at devouring the incredible Castlevania anime. However, after I binged on the anime, I wanted more and more. And more. Not just Konami products to write about. Although I’ve written about plenty Konami games before. I’ll share some of my proudest moments here. So, as you can imagine the Castlevania Anniversary Collection really came in handy in my days solitude and isolation. And to be honest… It brought me back to my childhood too. Oh, man. It’s so great. But I guess I’ll save my adventures in playing the games from the Castlevania Anniversary Collection for some other post.
Castlevania Anniversary Collection Brought Me To Netflix’s Castlevania
I’m here about the Castlevania anime series on Netflix and solely about that. First and foremost, I may be late to the party, but I’m so glad that I arrived at it. But, better late than never, I say. Why? Because Castlevania is really good. However, I’m not the biggest judge on anime, nor the biggest expert, so take this post with a grain of salt. And I’m also not here to debate whether Netflix’s Castelvania is anime at all.
I know that I found a heated debate from the fervent anime fans on Reddit, and several forums too. They were basically trashing the Netflix series, solely because it’s made by western cast and crew. Yes, the art style is very reminiscent of classic Japanese anime, but whether it really is? I don’t really know. I don’t have time for that, to be perfectly honest. I’m here to tell you that I enjoyed the series, and of course, give you my honest opinion.
However, let me just say. Even a basic rookie like myself would recognize a good product. So, yeah, to answer your question in a nutshell. Castlevania is a good TV series. Really good. However, in this particular post, I’ll mainly focus on the 1st season of Castlevania. And I’ll leave the rest of the seasons for some other occasions. Oh, and of course, we have Castlevania Anniversary Collection, the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Mirror of Fate HD, and the Castlevania: Lords of Shadow – Ultimate Edition currently on sale. They’re ready for you, and the sale time is running out. Hurry up!
Castlevania Anniversary Collection VS The Netflix TV Show
And just how good the Castlevania Netflix TV series Is? Well, for me it was almost perfection. I say almost because I have small faults that I found in the first season. Rest assured, I’ll explain them later in the post, but first let me start with the good. Rather than the bad.
The first season of Castlevania is focused on Trevor Belmont (voiced by Richard Armitage). The main protagonist in Castlevania III: Dracula’s Curse. The Konami’s game which the first season is based on of course and that can also be found in the aforementioned Castelvania collection. Belmont, the last living member of the Belmont clan will try and combat Dracula’s wrath on the people of Wallachia. The reason for Dracula’s vengeance on mankind?
The death of his wife Lisa. She’s a scientist and a doctor, but early on in the first episode is accused of being a witch. By the Catholic church of course. So, Dracula gives Vallachians one year to prepare for destruction and annihilation, but in comes Mr. Belmont. With the help of a powerful magician Sypha Belnades, he fights against Dracula’s powerful yet disgusting minions.
Castlevania Is Good…Really Good
I love a show in which Dracula is not even remotely the no. 1 bad guy. The religious zealots of the Catholic church are. But the truth is, here in Castlevania the tables are turned. The Catholic church is evil, while Dracula is being humanized . At the start, he even has humane, gracious character traits that bring out the best in him, rather than the worst. In the first 10 minutes of episode 1, he will even take upon himself the task of teaching Lisa. You know, the ways of the science, logical thinking and later on he marries her.
And even his revenge is motivated by grief for his wife. Again, another human trait that lingers throughout the first season. However, I would love if the progression of his relationship with Lisa was shown a bit more. That way, Dracula’s revenge would have been a bit more meaningful to us, the viewers. That being said, I could really use more episodes, period. In the first season of course. Since I feel that 4 episodes is not enough to develop the characters and the story with an equal pace and attention to detail.
Not that I’m complaining though. For what it is (a skimpy 4 episode arch), most of the characters are well developed. Which is a rarity even in the modern era of TV today. Not that many writers know how to develop characters in a short amount of time, but over here it’s on point. Especially characters like Trevor. I loved how he and the rest of the characters blended nicely with the ambiance. And of course with the dark tone of the series. It is a dark, bleak and scary series for sure. I mean it’s a dark fantasy series and it goes with the territory, but damn… At times it was a bit too dark even for me. The spiked heads, the carnage, the baby killings, oh my.
Fantastic Cast In Castlevania
The animators really outdid themselves here. But not only the animators. The voice cast is top-notch as well. I’m already a huge fan of Richard Armitage, but damn… He’s exceptional again and I appreciate that. He’s one of the last remaining method actors, so you really can’t expect anything less. Can you?
Graham McTavish is exceptional in the role of Dracula, while Matt Frewer is fantastic as the bishop. I love the cast here, and I can’t wait to start season 2. Peter Stormare is apparently in season 2 and I’m giddy with excitement about that.
Enjoyed Castlevania Anniversary Collection Too
But as much as I enjoyed watching the Castlevania anime, I enjoyed playing Castelvania too. Although for only a little bit, I’m afraid. I didn’t stay too long in Konami’s game, as I was struggling with Assassin’s Creed Odyssey. But more on that in a separate post. However, I did enjoy the anime a lot more. I can’t really pinpoint if it’s the short but sweet nature of the first season that appealed the most. Or were the 4 short episodes a week link in the chain, since it was a short period for such an iconic game. But for what it is, it’s a good series that I recommend it highly to every fan of the Castlevania franchise.