Trinity Blood is a series of Japanese light novels written by Sunao Yoshida with illustrations by Thores Shibamoto and originally serialized in The Sneaker. Set 900 years after an apocalyptic war between humans and vampires, the series focuses on the ongoing cold war between the Vatican, the human government, and the “New Human Empire”, the government of the vampiric Methuselah. Fighting on the Vatican’s side is Abel Nightroad, a Crusnik – a vampire that feeds on vampires. The novels blend science fiction, fantasy, and political intrigue, with some in the Vatican and the Empire striving for peace, and the Rosen Kreuz Order doing anything in its power to stop it.
Trinity Blood has been adapted into both manga and anime series, with continuity differences between the three versions. His friend Yasui aided in completing the manga, with illustrations by Kiyo Kujō. The anime series, spanning 24 episodes, was produced by Gonzo and originally aired on WOWOW network.
Differences among adaptations
While the novels, manga, and anime series all cover the same basic story and feature many of the same characters, they do have some minor and major differences. Each has its own unique variation on the major story arcs, and in general the novels give the most detail concerning the political elements and background information on the stories. There are a few minor name changes and many details found in the novels are not given in the anime or manga.
The artwork also differs from all three versions, as the character designs were each created by different artists. There are similarities, however, as Shibamoto is responsible for the novel illustrations, while Kiyo Kujō based his work in the manga on Shibamoto’s original designs. In the anime series, Dietrich von Lohengrin’s cold, evil nature is reflected in his appearance, while in the manga he has a softer, bishōnen design that is incongruous with his actual nature. Similarly, Endre is described as looking like a boy of around 10–12 years old, while in the anime he is given an adult appearance. In additions to variants in appearances, there are differences in personalities relationships between the versions, and there are some characters that are unique to each adaptation. Sister Noelle, whose death devastates Abel in the anime series and in the novels, does not exist in the manga series. Alternatively, the anime does not mention Tres’ two “brothers”.
Depending on the adaptation, some events occur at varying points in the story, while other events are unique to a single adaptation. The anime series’ introductory-style episodes are based on the novel segments with the same names, but they are told in a different story. For example, in the novels, “From the Empire”, the chapter in which Abel meets Asthe is the third chapter, following Flight Night and Witch Hunt, However, in the anime, From the Empire is the eleventh episode, coming after the Star of Sorrow arc and the Silent Noise incident. Conversely, the manga starts right with the Star of Sorrow arc and Abel meeting Esther and Dietrich. The Neumann brothers and their related story elements are found only in the novels. In the novels, it was Abel who interrupted the Cardinal’s gathering, rather than Caterina or Leon, and the only people available to investigate the Silent Noise incident in Rome are Abel, Tres, and Leon.
The chapters of the Trinity Blood manga series are illustrated by Kiyo Kujō and are based on the original light novel series written by Sunao Yoshida and illustrated by Thores Shibamoto. The ongoing series premiered in the shōjo manga anthology Monthly Asuka in 2004. Individual chapters are called “Acts”, and the chapter titles are based on film titles, except for chapter 22, the title of which comes from “the lyrics of the theme song of a certain pioneering kendo anime”. The individual chapters are collected and published in tankōbon volumes by Kadokawa Shoten, with the first released on March 17, 2004; as of March 24, 2015, 18 volumes were released.
The series is licensed for English-language release in North America by Tokyopop. In Australia and New Zealand, both the Chuang Yi and Tokyopop volumes are being released by Madman Entertainment through an importation agreement.
The first volume of the Trinity Blood manga reached the 30th spot on the Top 100 Graphic Novel sales for November 2006. Subsequent volumes have also all appeared in the top 100 spots in March, July, and November 2007.