A collaboration between PA Works and Warner Brothers Japan, Sirius the Jaeger (known as just “Sirius” in Japan) takes place in Imperial Capital 1930s Japan and throws a twist into the typical vampire, hunter, and werewolf trope. The first two episodes from the premiere set up the vampires as villains, and the hunters as our protagonists. However, there is yet another group that even the royal vampires seem to fear: Sirius.
Content review and opinions:
Our main protagonist in this series is Yuliy, presented as one of the hunters and someone who despises the “scent” of vampire rot and blood. Yuliy and his hunter party manage to track a coven of royal vampires to Japan, and almost succeeds in dusting one of them when he’s shot down out of the sky by a mysterious man. Yuliy is rescued by a cardiology researcher and his daughter, and stays with them as he recovers. Unfortunately the vampires attack the family, and Yuliy is forced to defend them. Good news, he dusts the vampire. Bad news, someone comes back from his past to haunt him.
One of the brilliant aspects of this series is honestly the fight scenes. The graphics are beautifully rendered and the movements are very much on point. Of course, with the action director being Masahiro Sato who is known for his action scenes, it’s no wonder the battle scenes are one of the attractions.
The plot is also paced very well. Each scene and detail reveal has a specific purpose and doesn’t drag on. If anything, the current combination of exposition and action keep the audience engaged. The character development is slow, revealing just enough details between fights to stir up interest. Though the thought ‘not another vampire/werewolf trope’ may be on many viewers’ minds, Sirius the Jaeger has enough of a spin to keep it fresh.
Though…if it was the creators’ intent to troll the audiences, they’ve succeeded pretty well. One particular comment in episode 2 at the premiere made at least half the audience—including myself—paranoid and preemptively go “Omg you are not pulling a Nina on us.”
Looking at the creators working on Sirius the Jaeger, it is no surprise that it turned out so well. They had staff from creators who have worked on major titles like Street Fighter and Fate/Apocrypha to name a few.
Director: Masahiro Ando
Original Character Design: Kinu Nishimura
Series Structure: Keigo Koyanagi
Action Director: Masahiro Sato
Music: Masaru Yokoyama
Animation: PA Works
In attendance to speak on the series was Kenji Horikawa, founder/CEO of PA WORKS and producer, who provided a short interview.
Q: How were you involved in Sirius the Jaeger?
A: The animation industry has changed a lot since the old days. The main outlet nowadays is streaming, and streaming is mostly aimed at overseas audiences. PA WORKS is also changing. Before, if I had an idea and I wanted to create an anime, I would do it. Nowadays, they’re trying to bring in younger producers who have more of an idea about the overseas audiences. With Sirius, I’m doing just that. I’m letting them take the lead and I’m just supervising. I’m there if they need me.
Q: What is your impression of Ando and his work?
A: Mr. Ando, before he started directing, he was renown for action animation. Everyone admired him for this, and when he became a director, all the young people wanted to work for him. It’s an honor if you’re picked by him to work with. For young people, because he demands high quality, it’s challenging for them to meet his expectations, but it’s an honor to work with him.
Q: What would you like the audience to notice the most?
A: If you see the picture, you’ll notice that the action, music, and creation is of absolute perfect quality, but you should also notice the difficult theme of what the modern hero should be. Please think on that as you watch.
Q: Message to the Fans!
A: All the young staff at PA WORKS are working on this challenging and difficult theme with Mr. Ando. I hope you will enjoy it with them when it comes to the US.
Fans also had a chance to listen to a short message created for this premiere from Yuuto Uemura, the voice of Yuliy. He wanted to introduce the series to fans, stating that Yuliy and Mikahil will have a lot of battle scenes with each other. “Yuliy will not express his emotions very well, but as he spends time with the Jaegers, he begins to change little by little. Hope you continue to like and support Sirius the Jaeger.”
We also had music producer Noriko Dohi at the panel with us to answer a few questions. The opening song is “Sirius” by rock band Kishida Kyoudan & The Akeboshi Rockets, while the ending song is “Hoshie,” the debuting track for new band Sajou no Hana.
A: They are making their debut with this anime. You already know the band who does the opening. We decided to use these new guys for the ending theme. The music is created by Shou Watanabe. He’s done music for LiSA, such as “Crossing Field” from Sword Art Online and “Oath Sign” from Fate/Zero, ClariS with “Connect” from Puella Magi Madoka Magica, etc. This is a 3 piece band with Watanabe as leader. The band name means “flower blooming in the desert.” It’s beautiful and fragile, but is like an oasis.
Q: What’s an interesting fact about “Sajou no Hana”?
A: The vocalist is sana, who is one of the vocalists from MOB CHOIR.
For more information about the series, check out the official website in both Japanese and English. Sirius the Jaeger officially airs on July 12, 2018.