Thursday, July 24, 2014

Black Butler directed by Toshiya Shinohara

If you’re looking for a moody, supernatural anime with memorable characters and suspenseful plot, then this is the show for you!

Black Butler revolves around Ciel Phantomhive. Ciel is the most powerful and influential boy in England. He is rich beyond measure and has the bratty attitude to prove it. But Ciel also has a dark secret; after being forced to watch his parents’ murder and being abducted and tortured, Ciel sold his soul to a demon in exchange for revenge on the people who hurt him and his family. This demon—Sebastian--now serves as Ciel’s personal butler. Sebastian works with Ciel to solve the mystery of his parents’ death and find his vengeance while simultaneously protecting his own investment until it is time for the debt to be repaid.

Each episode in this series is a new adventure for the pair and for the other members of Ciel’s staff (all of which are hiding their own dark secrets) as they encounter other demons, grim reapers, and people who aren’t all that they seem. But as the group comes closer to Ciel’s objective, the price of his revenge weighs heavily. Despite the affection Sebastian shows for Ciel, his ultimate goal is unchanged: to eat Ciel's soul.

This show is suspenseful and dark but somehow manages to maintain a lighthearted playfulness at the same time. I sat in shock as the end drew near and kept thinking to myself, “Sebastian can’t eat Ciel’s soul; He wouldn’t! Would he?”

If you love the anime check out the manga of the same name: Black Butler by Yana Toboso. Or if you’re looking for a similar story without the art, try The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud (the first book of The Bartimaeus Trilogy). These and more great titles are available at the Virginia Beach Public Library.

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