The month of October 2022 was loaded with releases that caused a stir. As much in manga, with the release of Dandadan published by Crunchyrollonly in animated with the adaptations of chain saw man or the last season of Mob Psycho 100. You have undoubtedly been overwhelmed with content to the point of missing one of the most promising releases of this year! So let’s talk about call of the night, the nocturnal work of mangaka KOTOYAMA. The series has been published since 2019 in the Weekly Shōnen Sundaya weekly magazine known to us in particular for Detective Conan, Frieren Where Komi is looking for his words. The series currently has 13 volumes in Japan and volumes 1 and 2 have been available from us since October 06, 2022.
And here are the reasons why we encourage you to answer the call of the night!
The story of a night walker
call of the nightit is the story of Ko, a 14-year-old schoolboy a little lost in his life. One night, he decides for the first time to go out alone without telling anyone. He goes for a walk in the meanders of the streets of his sleepy neighborhood. During his wanderings, he will meet nazuna, a pretty vampire, who will serve as his guide in this world of which he has so much to discover. Feeling like a fish in water in the middle of the night, he decides to escape his daily life by taking the initiative to become a vampire!
However, a certain condition that we didn’t see coming seems to get in his way: to become a vampire, he must fall in love with the vampire who sucks his blood. A problem for this young schoolboy for whom social relations have a superficial taste. But his motivation is unwavering and he decided he would fall in love with nazuna.
During his nocturnal adventures, accompanied by the vampire, he will fully immerse himself in the night. The two acolytes will have many diverse and varied encounters, sometimes surprising… or even downright dangerous. The situations they will find themselves confronted with will affirm or challenge the perception that they each have of each other as human and vampire. What is a Vampire? How do we become one? Are they irreducible? Should we be wary of it? So many questions among many others that will arise during this series, where drunkards and vampires can cross paths at the bend of an alley.
A unique and timeless atmosphere
The nocturnal scenes of these first volumes immediately put us in the mood. KOTOYAMA offers us with his sharp pen very contemplative boards of sleeping urban landscapes. This very special setting creates a unique atmosphere, a more intimate and timeless environment in which the characters can evolve together. You can feel the peace and calm of the night in the less frequented neighborhoods. This rather lyrical side is led by a fluid and skillfully balanced narration with a very present humor, with fresh and full of vigor characters.
During the first few pages of the work, the author decides to present us with the night in its raw state. Ko wander aimlessly through the night. It’s the arrival of nazuna interfering in his living space during a passage to the drinks machine which will give a great pedal stroke to the story. This scene is crystal clear: the night is not as it appears. If calm and tranquility are part of its components, the night can be very quickly turned upside down to give way to scenes of great dynamics. Kotoyama warns us that surprise can arise at the slightest corner.
An original relationship
Whether Ko seems to be the younger of our two friends, he is the one who shows himself to be the most mature unlike nazuna, who seems to want to enjoy the pleasures of life more than anything else. Our two night owls like to tease each other, as if to seek each other out. From the most childish humor to downright lewd, don’t expect any high-flown jokes from them. Aim below the belt instead!
The work offers new blood to vampires, a theme that many find hackneyed and gnawed to the bone. New rules: new hopes! Far from the plan-plan romances that the collective imagination seems to have affixed to this theme, the series offers us above all the delusions of a budding friendship.
The romantic aspect is there, of course, because Ko promised himself to fall in love with the young vampire. On the one hand, we find Ko who tries to understand his emotions and direct them… On the other, nazuna who, although she tries to play it “ love professional », demonstrates a certain inexperience. Like neither nazuna neither Ko don’t really seem to know what a romance is, the theme is approached with a light touch and totally uninhibited.
A top edition
as the editor Kurokawa has a reputation for doing so, this edition of call of the night seems to do honor to its original support. It is graphically respectful of the Japanese edition and even allows itself, exclusively in France, to play with the lunar phases which advance according to the releases of the volumes on the covers and the backs.
In translation, we can find Xaviere Daumarie who worked on banana fish, vampire knight or even CityHunter. In the lettering, it is the excellent work of Sylvie Naddeo-Deloche that we can already appreciate on SPY x Family which will be in the spotlight, offering a complete graphic adaptation of the sound effects. We really appreciate it here!
If it were necessary to cite a negative point to this edition, it would be rather subjective: the repeated use of certain Anglicisms in the vocabulary of the characters. Even if English is becoming more and more present in our current vocabulary, limiting ourselves to what is strictly necessary in order to be sure not to leave any reader on the side of the road seems to us to be a good measure.
To sum up, it is a nicely successful edition that Kurokawa offers us. Thanks again.
The genesis of the work
call of the night Where Yofukashi no Uta (よふかしのうた) in its original version is actually the eponym of a piece of Creepy Nuts, a Japanese hip hop musical duo that the author is particularly fond of. It is this sound, a true ode to the night, which will inspire Kotoyama for the atmosphere of his manga. During the production of the anime by Liden Films, they were, unsurprisingly, automatically selected to produce the opening and closing credits. The most seasoned eyes will even be able to find their cameos both in the manga and in its animated adaptation.
Other works by the author
Whether call of the night is the first manga of the author to arrive here, it is however not her first serialization. Before lighting up the night with the glow of residential lampposts, it’s the dagashithis multitude of cheap Japanese sweets, which she had wanted to present at the head of the gondola.
Dagashi Kashi (だがしかし)
Published from June 2014 to March 2018 in the same magazine as his older brother, the story plunges us into the daily life of Kokonotsu, a young teenager who, despite his father’s insistence, does not want to take over the family business: A candy store in the countryside. One day, out of nowhere, a candy lover named Hotaru bursts into the store. Like an encyclopedia of sweets, Hotaru will try to convince our young hero that there is nothing cooler than these sweet treats. A humorous work full of life and passion that will teach you a lot about Japanese sweets.
If all this made your mouth water, although this manga has not (yet) had a French adaptation, it has benefited from an animated adaptation. The 2 seasons produced by Tezuka Productions are already available on ADN and the first season is even available for free. A light novel version has also been produced, unfortunately it is not available in France either.
Kotoyama is an author to follow closely, on her Twitter account for example (@cot_510), but not only. It is not for nothing that the two series that it holds to its credit have already been adapted into animated. His narration and his line make his mangas unique little pieces. We can only encourage you to take an interest in his work and to support him: by buying the volumes, watching the animated series or talking about his works around you. The series is still ongoing in Japan and is only gaining popularity, in particular thanks to the highlighting of its animated adaptation (broadcast in France by ADN, first episode available for free). A skilful mix of comedy, action, romance: the myth of the vampire reinvented in a 100% shônen work. A work full of bite, to devour expressly!