The Anime Vampire Trifecta: Koutetsujou no Kabaneri – Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress

The Anime Vampire Trifecta: Koutetsujou no Kabaneri – Kabaneri of the Iron Fortress

Since I seem to have a theme going I will continue on.  While Kizumonogatari and Shiki were both fairly traditional vampire tales with all the appropriate details, Kabanari of the Iron Fortress is an interesting twist on the original theme.

This story is set in an alternate world sometime after the industrial revolution.  It is a dark “steam-punk” like world with a population living in fear of the aggressive, blood-drinking beings, called Kabane,  who were originally humans but have been infected with a virus.  The people, for the most part, live in fortified train stations connected by rail road tracks, traveled over by immense steam locomotives.  The only way to destroy the Kabane is to remove the head or pierce the heart.  This is protected by a breast bone as hard and thick as an iron plate.


Our hero, Ikoma (生駒), is a young engineer who is working on a new type of steam projectile weapon that will penetrate the chest cavity of the Kabane.  He is successful in his efforts but is also infected by the Kabane virus during an attack on his village/train station.  He is able to halt the progress of the virus by some truly byzantine methods and, instead of losing his mind and becoming a vicious monster, becomes instead a half human/half kabane called a Kabaneri.

mumeiIkoma is assisted by the beautiful and ferocious Mumei, whom we later learn is also a Kabaneri.  Through various adventures the two fall in love and create most of the stress and conflict throughout the story.

The society in this story is similar to feudal Japan in the Edo period.  They are ruled by a Shogun and various members of the military, referred to as bushi (ぶし) or ”The Fist”.  These military elements provide protection for the engineers and workers of the society but the weapons they possess at the beginning of the story are largely ineffective.  They abuse the local population and exploit their labor in a similar manner to what might have been expected from samurai of the 1600s.

Violence abounds in this series.  Scenes of blood drinking and violent combat are found throughout.  Nudity and sexual content, however, are not present for the most part, beyond some minor nudity on the part of members of the Kabane hords.  The anime is organized into a single season of 12 episodes.  The colors are dark and the palette is desaturated as one might expect from a pseudo steam-punk animation.  The animation style is, for the most part, excellent and the music is epic.  Legitimate sources for viewing are as follows:


Thanks to all who have liked or commented.  Hope what you find here is interesting.  Please feel free to offer suggestions for further reviews.  I won’t promise to do them but I will consider it.

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