- 2 Seasons
Shiki is a horror anime series produced by Daume and directed by Tetsuro Amino. The series aired in Japan from July to December 2010, and later dubbed into English by Funimation. The show is set in a small, rural village called Sotoba, which is nestled deep in the mountains of Japan. The story of Shiki follows a doctor named Toshio Ozaki, who begins to notice a string of bizarre deaths occurring in his village. These fatalities seem to be the result of an infectious disease, but as more and more people die, Toshio realizes that something more sinister is at work. He enlists the help of a visiting nurse named Seishin Muroi, and together they uncover a shocking truth: the village is being overrun by vampires. As the series progresses, the focus shifts from Toshio and Seishin to a pair of teenage protagonists, Natsuno Yuuki and Megumi Shimizu. Natsuno is a new resident of Sotoba, and he quickly becomes suspicious of the village's inhabitants. Megumi, meanwhile, is a local girl who becomes obsessed with the idea of leaving Sotoba for the big city, and seeks out Natsuno's help in doing so. When Megumi dies unexpectedly, Natsuno realizes that she has been turned into a vampire. The remainder of the series follows Natsuno as he struggles to survive in a world overrun by vampires. He is aided by a handful of sympathetic humans, including his parents and a local priest, but it quickly becomes apparent that the odds are heavily stacked against them. The vampires of Sotoba are powerful, cunning, and terrifyingly relentless, and Natsuno and his allies will need to be resourceful if they hope to make it out alive. One of the strengths of Shiki is the way in which it portrays its vampires. These creatures are not the romanticized, sexy vampires that have become popular in recent years. Instead, they are depicted as feral, animalistic creatures that prey on the weak and vulnerable. They are not stereotypes, however - the show takes the time to explore their motivations, fears, and desires. They are not evil for the sake of being evil, but rather have their own twisted sense of morality. Another standout feature of Shiki is its setting. The village of Sotoba is beautifully rendered, with lush forested mountains and a tranquil, picturesque countryside. The show makes great use of the natural environment, using it to create a sense of isolation and unease. The pacing of the show is also expertly handled, with a slow build-up that gradually leads to a shocking and explosive conclusion. Overall, Shiki is an excellent example of a horror anime done right. It is a dark, brooding, and chilling series that is sure to leave a lasting impression on viewers. While it does have its fair share of gore and violence, it is also a deeply psychological series that explores themes of fear, isolation, and the nature of humanity. Highly recommended for fans of horror, supernatural, and psychological anime.