Ever since Bram Stoker published his landmark non-fiction text, Dracula, in 1897 and alerted the modern world to the presence of the hungry nightwalkers in our midst, the public has grown increasingly interested in identifying the noxious Nosferatu who walk among us, even going so far as to name May 26th of each year as World Dracula Day.
In order to raise public awareness, I (with the aid of consulting physician Dr. Acula Alucard) have compiled a handy reference to help viewers determine whether their favorite anime have been infiltrated by vampires. With no further ado, we present a bullet-proof, seven-point guide on How To Spot A Dracula — Anime Edition.
In order to feed their monstrous thirsts, your average Dracula needs some sort of sharpened implement to pierce the lovely, lovely veins of their unsuspecting victims. This most commonly manifests in the form of pronounced canine teeth, as demonstrated above by the character of Kirino Kosaka from Oreimo, whose chances of being a Dracula are thus extremely high. A note of caution, gentle readers: sometimes these fangs can be retractable. Trust no one!
It goes without saying that vampires have risen from their eternal sleep, and with no natural life spans, many Draculas can prolong their accursed existences indefinitely. This property is often a major giveaway because long-lived vampires tend to grow entrenched in their habits and develop tastes for fancy, flamboyant, and outdated clothing styles.
Just look at Marin Kitagawa (above) from My Dress-Up Darling. Doesn't that outfit just scream “slave of the night?” Dracula tendency: 99.3 percent!
Everyone knows that a Dracula has to sleep in a coffin lined with soil from their native land. That's just science. But don't get it twisted, dear readers. Merely sleeping in a coffin alone is not a foolproof indication of Dracula infiltration. For example, you'll notice that Sophie Twilight from the alarmingly named Ms. Vampire who lives in my neighborhood. TV anime sleeps in a coffin stuffed with dakimakura hug pillows, and no self-respecting succubi would ever be caught doing that, right?
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“The children of the night! What music they make!” Draculas frequently demonstrate an uncanny ability to control and communicate with bats, wolves, armadillos, and other often unfairly maligned mammals. However, no matter how Gothic their animal magnetism might be, no reasonable person ever would categorize hippos, giraffes, and flamingos as “children of the night,” and so Mai Vlad Transylvania (above) from VLAD LOVE is thus officially cleared of any suspicion of fraternizing with the supernatural.
Perhaps the easiest way to spot a Dracula is through the use of reflective surfaces, as vampires are traditionally incapable of seeing themselves in mirrors. This may lead readers to wonder: How can so many Draculas have such perfect hair and make-up? (The answer: Renfield’s major in cosmetology. Get yourself a Renfield.) Since Hikari Takanashi (above) from Interviews with Monster Girls casts a reflection, her likelihood of being a Dracula in disguise is minimized.
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In general, the greatest threat to a Dracula's existence is nourishing, wholesome sunlight. Some Draculas turn to ash when exposed to the happy rays of Mr. Sun. Others rot, or explode, or in some cases, their unholy powers are severely diminished. As a result, it's safe to say that if you see someone walking around in the daytime – or sporting a nice tan like Youko Shiragami (above) from Actually, I Am — then chances are good that they are not, in fact, a Dracula.
“I never drink … coffee.” No, there is only one delicious liquid that can slake the thirst of the irrepressible anime Dracula, and that is innocent, human blood! While catching a Dracula red-handed (and red-mouthed, honestly) in the process of feeding is a sure-fire way to identify the Gothic lifestyle of a member of the restless, sometimes it's enough evidence for them merely to express an interest in the viscous red liquid belonging to someone else. When Mio from Nichijou – My Ordinary Life demands to know the color of Yuko's blood, she's expressing dangerously Dracula-like tendencies. Any reasonable individual would be breaking out the garlic and the wooden stakes, just to be on the safe side.
And there you have it, dear readers, a definitive guide to determining whether or not your favorite anime characters are, in fact, Draculas. Follow the above tips closely and you may just avoid finding a pair of unwelcome fangs in your neck. Vigilance in the face of vampirism is a never-ending duty, and as surely as the day follows the darkest night, it's clear that the anime medium is absolutely crawling with Draculas.
Which anime characters do you suspect of secretly being Draculas? Let us know in the comments section below, and be sure to have a safe and vampire-free World Dracula Day. Now, if you'll excuse me I have to take an appointment with a mysterious Eastern European aristocrat who wishes to purchase some property in London …
Paul Chapman is the host of The Greatest Movie EVER! Podcast and GME! Anime Fun Time.
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