Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust Review

Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust Review

Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust anime movie cover art
Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust

Sequel to Vampire Hunter D

Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust (バンパイアハンターD) is the sequel to Vampire Hunter D. But, Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, is also simply called Vampire Hunter D. Why is that the case? I don’t know. The “Bloodlust” subtitle is only for the English version of the movie.

Anyway, the first thing you should ask yourself when considering this movie is, “Do I need to watch the first one?” The good news is that the answer is no. You don’t need to watch the original Vampire Hunter D to understand Bloodlust.

Will watching the original help you understand Bloodlust? Maybe. I didn’t watch it. But, here’s the thing, most people who watched Bloodlust didn’t watch the original. In fact, over twice as many people have recorded watching Bloodlust than the original.

And, since Bloodlust also has a higher rating than the original, the answer seems pretty clear. The original isn’t necessary.

Vampire Hunter D from the anime series Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust
Vampire Hunter D

In case you’re curious, the original came out in 1985. And Bloodlust came out in 2000. That’s another good sign that the original isn’t necessary. It usually doesn’t make sense to expect viewers to watch a prequel from 15 years earlier.

However, I still need to point out that MyAnimeList classifies Bloodlust as a sequel. So, if you do want to watch both movies, there shouldn’t be any overlap. They have different plots. Though, I read a synopsis of the original and it seems pretty similar. It has the same basic plot, even if it’s technically different.

Now, here’s my opinion on the matter. Vampire Hunter D (original) looks like a bad 80’s movie. So, unless that’s your thing, why put yourself through watching it? Watch the better Vampire Hunter D movie instead and pretend the other doesn’t exist. That’s what I did.

Horror, Fantasy, and Sci-Fi

Alright, it’s time to go over what Vampire Hunter D is actually about. In case you couldn’t guess, it’s about a vampire hunter named D. But, what’s special about D isn’t that he’s a vampire. It’s that he’s a dhampir, which is a human-vampire hybrid.

One of my favorite parts of the movie was when D commented on what this means for him. Leila, the female lead, asks him why he’s a vampire hunter. And he responds that he can’t live as a human. He’s not a human and he’s not a vampire. So, he can’t live among either of them.

Moving on, some old rich guy hires D to rescue his daughter who was kidnapped by a vampire. After extorting the man for more money, D accepts. And if he can’t save the girl, he’s to kill her so she doesn’t keep on “living” as a vampire herself.

Leila holding her gun from the anime movie Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust
Leila holding her gun

There are also other vampire hunters on the case, as well. So, not only does D have to worry about the vampire and his minions. But, he also has to worry about the other hunters coming after him. He may be a dhampir, but that’s good enough for vampire hunters.

The plot is pretty simple. But, what’s more interesting is the setting. Since this movie involves vampires, it naturally counts as both a horror and fantasy anime. However, what I didn’t realize until watching it is that it’s also sci-fi.

I don’t know where the movie takes place. But, it’s not on Earth. There are also high-tech gadgets, like Leila’s anti-matter handgun. And the vampire being hunted by D and the others is attempting to flee into deep space.

The sci-fi stuff is kind of interesting. But, I’m also not sure it adds anything to the movie.

Meier Link: The Hero

It’s spoiler time. It turns out that Meier Link, the vampire villain of the story, was actually the hero all along. Well, technically, D is the hero, I guess. He was trying to save Charlotte and kill Meier for being an “evil” vampire.

But, Meier was misunderstood. He didn’t kidnap Charlotte at all. He and Charlotte are in love and the two of them eloped. Sure, he turned a whole village into zombies. But, that’s only because they tried to kill him first. There’s no evidence that he wanted to hurt anyone.

In fact, there’s plenty of evidence to the contrary. Charlotte herself said Meier only killed those people in self-defense. And at one point, D mentions rumors that Meier has never actually “turned” a human by sucking their blood. So, it seems to be known that Meier isn’t a bad vampire.

Meier Link holding Charlotte Elbourne's hand from the anime movie Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust
Meier Link holding Charlotte Elbourne’s hand

Most important of all, though, Meier doesn’t want Charlotte to become a vampire. He doesn’t want her to suffer an immortal life like his. And because of that, he refuses to turn her into one. He loves her as she is and doesn’t want to change her.

Unfortunately, Meier doesn’t get the happy ending I was hoping he would. He was tricked by Carmilla, who wanted to use Charlotte’s blood to revive herself. And that resulted in Charlotte’s death.

But, at least Meier himself didn’t die. Though, that could be either a blessing or a curse. After Charlotte died, I assumed Meier would ask D to kill him so that he could be with her in the afterlife. But, he didn’t do that.

Instead, D lets Meier take Charlotte’s body and blast off into space to live out the rest of eternity in peace. Probably not the ideal outcome for Meier.

Final Thoughts

In case you’re wondering, yes, reviewing Vampire Hunter D on Halloween was intentional. We watched it for October’s anime movie night in the DoubleSama Discord server. So, if you’re into that sort of thing, come and join us. We do movie night events every month.

As for my rating of Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust, it’s a 7/10. It has a cool aesthetic and I liked the main characters (D, Leila, and Meier). But, it also felt a bit too “shounen battle tropey” to me. There was a whole thing about defeating Meier’s three bodyguards before reaching him. It felt out of place and dated (which, to be fair, it is).

Anyway, if you enjoyed this review, remember to share it with everyone you know. Also, follow me on your social media of choice so you don’t miss out on any future articles — links are in the footer.

Finally, I’d like to thank Roman and JasonHK for supporting at the Heika tier this month. I’d also like to thank Key Mochi for supporting at the Senpai tier. And, I’d like to thank Rob and Pepe for supporting at the Kouhai tier. To learn more about supporting this blog, check out

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