「Femme fatale―恋―」 (Famu Fatāru―Koi―)
It was interesting to see more of the vampire world, with our gang’s dessert at the hotel (which is decked out in colors more suitable for 18th than the 19th century) and a decadent ball (where dancers are wearing street clothes, not formal-wear). The human and vampire worlds differ in aspects other than their inhabitants, as some things, like tarte tatin (which did actually originate in France) are native to humans and only brought to the vampire world through adventurous vampires. Besides highlighting how foreign the two worlds are from each other, the tarte tatin also amusingly emphasized just how opposite Noé and Vanitas are. Hating sweets aside, Vanitas was the focus of today’s show.
Vanitas, for all his show of arrogance, is sensitive to Jeanne’s wishes and personal privacy, not disclosing her bloodlust to Luca. He doesn’t hold that over her head either and is willing to make a deal with her, trading secrecy for exclusive blood sucking rights. Again, his motivation seems to be murky-part romance and part damage control. By sucking only his blood, she always has a blood-source at hand and need not bite into a random stranger when her bloodlust is out of control.
Now that Vanitas has confirmed that Jeanne is a curse-bearer, why is he not curing her? He has the grimoire, so he could look into her name and cleanse it easily. A likely answer would be having something to do with her curse not being advanced enough for concern or Vanitas will try to use her to get to the bottom of the curse. Intriguingly, Jeanne mentioned something about medicine for her curse and not even the malady expert, Vanitas, knew of it. Who made it and where did it come from?
Vanitas may not wear his heart on his sleeve, but he does wear Jeanne’s mark on his neck. Up until now, I had my doubts about his feelings for Jeanne. After his conversation with Noé, it is obvious it is the real thing and not a pretense with ulterior motive.
What caught my attention was Vanitas’ statement that he would have “zero interest in a person who would love him”. He is aware of his ruthlessness and as the saying goes, people admire others for qualities they themselves lack. Jeanne with her genuine, caring nature is the opposite of him. While it is true that Jeanne is put-off by someone as ruthless and forceful as Vanitas, that doesn’t mean she can’t come to love him if her kindness and close interactions with him cause her to see positive qualities in him.
Jeanne may just be the one to bring out a softer side of Vanitas. Usually, it’s hard to tell what he is thinking and he often looks as if he is hiding something. With Jeanne, all his cards are on the table and he says what he is thinking. I like the added complexity of the scheming, merciless Vanitas on one hand and on the other hand, a boy in the thralls of a first love.
Between Jeanne and Noé, Vanitas is now surrounded by people who offset his cold logic with warmth and kindness into his calculations. With how friends can influence one’s mindset, I would expect that they might begin to influence him a little, to include feelings into his calculations.
Speaking of friends-with the dance scene and Noé’s desire to drink Vanitas’ sweet blood, there seemed to hint at a tease for a Noé x Vanitas pairing- for the benefit of certain target audiences, if you choose read into it that way. A tease that will remain a tease, since it is becoming clear who the couples of the show will be.
Let’s not forget our other couple in the making-Domi and Noé. Their encounter is paralleled nicely with Vanitas and Jeanne. Unlike the latter couple, Domi and Noé spoke fewer words, but their growing feelings are evident nonetheless. Domi certainly is aware of what she thinks of Noé, taking out her frustration at Noé’s density. Noé, however, still has a ways to go and is at the stage of “her blood tastes good and she makes my heart flutter”. The romantic Vanitas has given Noé food for thought and hopefully soon will graduate from obliviousness-the sooner the better for poor Domi.
Anyone else find the “relationship” between Jeanne and Van uncomfortable?
I think their relationship is great. Yes, they are both somewhat dysfunctional, but in different ways, and therefore complement each other.
I have mixed feelings. Sometimes it does, particularly when he was forceful with her a few episodes ago. If he treats her with respect, though, I find no problem with that. But given that it’s Vanitas we’re talking about, he might just continue doing whatever suits him in the moment, regardless of whether or not it disrespects anyone else. At the same time, I also find it adorable how he gets all “sparkly” for her.
You really saw another episode than me XD (not meant as an insult, it’s just funny how much our perspectives differ, but again, I have already read the corresponding chapter) Sry, this will be a longer post …
“Now that Vanitas has confirmed that Jeanne is a curse-bearer, why is he not curing her?”
I didnt ask myself that. He did ask a question “Are you a curse bearer?” There’s still the possibility that she has some other issue. And as far as I understood, Vanitas needs the “malnomen” to drag the real name out which he in turn knows by the “symptoms”. So he couldnt cure her unless Jeanne talks about it or the illness breaks out. Also, (and this is not a spoiler, because I dont know at all!) when I think of PH, most of the characters carry some secret that is hinted at before. The way Jeanne reacted and Vanitas being surprised about there being medicine for people like Jeanne, I think that she is not a curse-bearer.
“Up until now, I had my doubts about his feelings for Jeanne. After his conversation with Noé, it is obvious it is the real thing and not a pretense with ulterior motive.”
And with that I absolutely disagree XD After his conversation for me it was now obvious that he didn’t “love” her after all, that he was only interested in and attracted to her. He says: “For me, I define that as love, it’s more interesting this way.” It’s obvious that Vanitas has some really big issues, in an earlier episode it was also strange how he said he didnt care about anything. And this sentence and his reactions generally really sound to me that he just tries to have fun for now. (Again, I DO think he’s attracted to her, but I don’t think that this can be called “love”)
“a boy in the thralls of a first love.” Here too – with the scenes in the link there – I totally disagree ;P I think its really sad if you cant love yourself enough to accept that someone else likes you. In my eyes, he said that not out of affection but more out of desperation. It may be because of the music and the sparkling atmosphere in the anime that you got the other impression, but I will eat a broom if this wasn’t some hint to Vanitas issues. I also understood the “Im afraid Id step on her” as having two meanings. He oviously has some problems with “himself”. But again, the manga really emphasizes those scenes much more than the anime does.
“it is becoming clear who the couples of the show will be.” I think that this is the first time the anime added scenes. In the manga it’s much more subtle, in the anime it’s immediately obvious that Noé is interested in Jeanne, which is also why he asks the question about love. Thats why I’m not so sure about the couple “Domi x Noé” yet. But I dont get why Noé is affected so much by the “relationship” between Vanitas and Jeanne. She has shown only her disgust towards Vanitas.
“there seemed to hint at a tease for a Noé x Vanitas pairing- for the benefit of certain target audiences” Yeah, The relationships in PH were also really “intense” (dont have a better word right now), independent of gender. If we add the fact that we have this metrosexuality-style in Mochizukis works, no wonder the readers get the idea that it’s a tease for some people just as you said. But I really don’t see any physical attraction whatsoever. I also never saw that in PH either.
But – speaking generally now -Vanitas no Karte for sure is emphasizing sensuality much more than PH was. This biting and drinking blood basically being equal to kissing, and other “intimacies” 😉 … But I’m totally fine with it ^^
That is true, that he can’t cure her unless she manifests the curse, like the other curse-bearers did and right now, Jeanne is (although just barely) keeping it under control. I wonder when/if a time will come when her curse will manifest itself.
With Noé, I don’t really get the sense that it’s Jeanne he’s into. I think he is paying attention to her, more because of jealousy for Vanitas (again, the whole framing of the Vanitas x Noé pairing) than because of any attraction for her.
When I was started watching Vanitas no Karte, I didn’t realize it was going to go all sensual (I was expecting more of a hands (or fangs) off, but I love you from a distance approach), but I like it, and they make it fit into the story’s context. Yes, PH definitely also has the hints of “intense” sexuality to it, but I feel like Vanitas no Karte takes it do a whole other level (which makes sense with the whole connotation of sexy vampires).
Funny thing: Jeanne ate Tarte Tatine faster then anyone, Noé including.
In the manga he speed-ate the second one and then followed Jeanne&Vanitas. In the anime it’s like: “which one is more important – Tarte Tatin or Jeanne (+Vanitas)? Result: Jeanne (+Vanitas) – again, the anime emphasizes Noés affection much more.
Those are interesting observations! After reading your comments about the manga vs. anime, it is clear the anime is pushing the Noé x Vanitas tease (which I don’t necessarily mind).