Kuroshitsuji aka Black Butler

When I first laid my eyes on Kuroshitsuji manga a while back, I was like, “wow, what a cool butler and a dashing one at that!” Truth to be told, I wasn’t that into it but I figured that it’s worth a read.

Many have compared this series to Hayate no Gotoku, another somewhat similar series. I was thinking, that’s just so wrong. Kuroshitsuji and Hayate no Gotoku are nothing alike at all although I must say that both Sebastian and Hayate would make excellent butlers. And one more thing that I would like to add here, Kuroshitsuji is way darker than Hayate no Gotoku, just the way I like it.

So anyways, I mentioned that I wasn’t so into Kuroshitsuji, well, that is until I watched the anime version.

Unlike manga, anime is much more complex. The characters now have voices and in animation, you can see them interact with each other. In other words, an once still manga character has now come alive. Right, it seems to me that I’ve gone off topic…so anyway, what I’m trying to say is Kuroshitsuji anime is vibrant and the quality of the animation is almost impeccable.

Here’s the lowdown of what Kuroshitsuji is all about:

Ciel Phantomhive is the heir of Phantomhive family, what being the only son and all. I’m not quite sure what business does Phantomhives dabble in but correct me if I’m wrong, from the manga, it is said that the Phantomhives work for the Queen. Some even said that they are the queens dog. Then again, in the beginning of the series, you can see that Ciel and this guy from a toy factory that is supposedly owned by the Phantomhives were having a discussion about business, no less and that guy is trying to leech off Ciel thinking that he’s just an ordinary 12-year-old. Little did he know that Ciel is no ordinary kid and that he has a secret weapon, Sebastian the butler from hell.

Both of Ciel’s beloved parents are deceased. It seems that when Ciel was little, their house caught fire (from arson I think) and he was the sole survivor. My guess is, Ciel was almost dead and was caught between the living and the dead and that was when he made a deal with a demon. The demon will only take orders from Ciel and will follow Ciel until his death (Ciel’s) in exchange for Ciel’s soul. That’s just what I think…

Sebastian is indeed a butler from hell, literally speaking. From my understanding after reading the manga and watching the anime, Sebastian is a demon from hell who have made a contract with Ciel long ago. As mentioned earlier, Sebastian would make an excellent butler, but from the looks of it, his ability as a butler is way beyond excellent. With his seemingly demonic powers, he managed to get out of tight spots almost without a scratch (with exception of some holes on his tailcoat after saving Ciel from an Italian mafia in episode two).

As expected from those who are of noble descent, Ciel is engaged at such a young age to another girl of noble descent, Elizabeth. Nothing much is known about his fiance except that she loves to dress Ciel (and Sebastian) in cutesy outfits.

Ciel’s only relative (or so it would seem) is her aunt, Madam Red, his mother’s younger sister. It seems that she was in love with Lord Phantomhive (Ciel’s father) who in turn, was in love with her elder sister. She thought that she could never love man other than Phantomhive but Cupid strikes and she fell for one guy. Unfortunately for her, it doesn’t end with a happily ever after. He died in an accident which also cause the then pregnant Madam Red’s inability to produce any more offspring as her uterus was removed. This prompts a deep hatred within her and she did something unthinkable…think Jack the Ripper.
(Note: Her real name isn’t Madam Red. She’s only known as Madam Red because she likes the colour red).

Throughout the whole series so far, Ciel’s other servants provide the comic relief.

  • Maylene, the clumsy maid in spectacles who seem to have a crush on Sebastian
  • Bard the cook who doesn’t seem to be able to cook a decent meal
  • Finian the gardener who seems idiotic in Sebastian eyes
  • Tanaka, the Phantomhive household steward who does nothing but sipping tea

And have you notice that Ciel’s wearing an eyepatch on his right eye? One may wonder how he injured his eye but that’s not the purpose of the eyepatch at all. You see, there’s an emblem or a sign of some sort on his right eye. A similar emblem/sign can be seen on Sebastian’s left hand. This emblem/sign I suppose is what marks the contract that binds both Ciel and Sebastian together.

My thoughts on the anime:

At one glance, one may think that Kuroshitsuji looks shotacon-ish. Lol. It looks like it but it’s not. It’s purely a master-servant relationship although sometimes the author gave the impression (in the manga) that they are having more than just a master-servant relationship as a comic relief or some sort.

Based on the first two episodes that I have seen, I believe that this anime is as good as sounds. That said, I’m gonna watch this series till the very end. Trust me, it’s worth watching and it’s definitely nothing like Hayate no Gotoku aside from the butler thing.

Oh yeah, the ending credit that rolls at the end of the anime is rather cute…you can see chibi Sebastian in it. Not to mention that the ED song is catchy and memorable.

Happy watching!

Note 1: Kuroshitsuji OP and ED singles will be released on October 29, 2008 and October 22, 2008 respectively.

Note 2: Some of the information here are obtained from wikipedia.