Manga Review: Call of the Night Volume Four

Call of the Night Volume Four sees Ko learning some more about what it is to be a vampire.

Call of the Night Volume Four
Written by: Kotoyama
Publisher: Shogakukan
English Publisher: VIZ Media
Release Date: October 12, 2021

The volume opens with Ko running to Aki, the guy that was turned into a vampire at the end of Volume Three. He has a different look to him, though… he doesn’t wear his glasses anymore, and his clothing looks more stylish. And from talking with Ko, we learn that Aki has a different perspective on life now that he’s been turned into a vampire. After talking with Aki, it seems like Ko is more determined than ever to become a vampire, especially after seeing how “cool” Aki became. This interaction between Aki and Ko becomes important later in the volume.

The story then moves on to Kohakobe, one of the female vampires that Ko met in Volume Three. She works at a maid café called Café Vamp, and at this job she goes by the name of Midori. They’re going to be short-staffed after an employee calls out, but Nazuna and Ko just happen to walk by at the right time. Nazuna is roped into being a maid at the café, and it’s actually kind of funny how awkward she is at it. Ko ends up hanging out at the café, and he meets an employee named Alisa. It turns out she’s not a vampire and she used to be the top maid at the café… until Midori came along. When I read that exposition from Alisa, I had a feeling that this was somehow going to become an important detail for the story.

It’s brought to Midori’s attention that peeping tom pictures taken at the café have been posted online. Ko is put on the case to determine who is being photographed and who is taking and posting the pictures. Ko deduces rather quickly that they’re all pictures of Alisa, taken after the café has closed for the night. If you’ve read my review of Call of the Night Volume One, I made a comment that Ko’s design made me think that this is what Mitsuhiko from Detective Conan (aka Case Closed) might look like as a teenager. In this volume, Ko makes a reference to Case Closed while he’s trying to solve the mystery, and I nearly giggled because of that comparison I made. What I’m curious to know, though, is if the Detective Conan/Case Closed reference appeared in the original Japanese version of this volume, or if this was something the English translator added to the English release. But sure enough, the fact that Alisa became the second most popular maid at the café was an important piece of information for this storyline, and it’s directly tied into the resolution of the mystery.

The next story focuses on Ko’s friend, Akira. It’s actually a flashback to events that led up to what the reader saw right at the beginning of Call of the Night Volume One. A girl named Sakura starts talking with Akira about Ko, and it’s obvious this girl has a major crush on him. We then see what happens after Ko rejected Sakura, and Akira feels guilty and thinks this is her fault. We then see her admit to herself that when she found out Ko had turned Sakura down, Akira felt relieved. I’ve always felt since Akira was first introduced in the series that she was interested in Ko, and this chapter seems to be hinting that I may not have been off-track with that thought.

The next chapter sees Ko running into his teacher while he’s out in the middle of the night. During this encounter, we learn that Ko never really liked this teacher, but after the two of them talk for a while, Ko comes to realize that his teacher isn’t as bad of a person as he thought he was. The one thing I really appreciated about this chapter was the fact that through flashbacks, the reader is able to see a little bit of what school was like for Ko before he stopped going. Prior to this, all we really saw of Ko at school was the scene where he turned down Sakura. It was after that moment that Ko stopped going and started wandering in the middle of the night. I’ve always been a little curious about what school was like for Ko, and this chapter gave me the opportunity to at least see a glimpse of this. But, during this chapter, the teacher asks Ko about Mahiru Seki, one of his friends. We briefly saw him in Volume Three, and the teacher reveals that Mahiru isn’t acting like himself.

After this, Ko encounters a woman named Anko Uguisu, and she’s a private detective. At first, this comes across as a random meeting, but then she asks Ko about Aki. He’s been reported as a missing person, and she’s trying to track him down. While Ko tries to claim that he has no idea who Aki is, the private detective picks up on the fact that he’s hiding something.

This leads into Mahiru bringing Ko and Akira to school in the middle of the night to explore the various “wonders” that are rumored to be there. Of course, they turn out to be fake… but they encounter an old man in one of the classrooms as they go to investigate the final “wonder.” It turns out he’s a man who was turned into a vampire and has refused to drink blood in the ten years that have passed since he was turned. As Ko wonders about this old man, who is obviously a vampire and is in pain… which doesn’t fit in with Ko’s mental image of someone becoming cool after being turned into a vampire. Anko, the private detective shows up and she reveals some harsh truths about becoming a vampire… and she also knows how to allow this man to die as a human rather than as a monster. Anko makes it clear that she’s aware of Ko’s dream of becoming a vampire, but she also lets the three youths know that if they have any questions about what they witnessed, they can contact her. Right at the end of the volume, we see Mahiru approach Anko, and she’s not surprised that he came to see her.

Call of the Night Volume Four turned out to be an interesting continuation to the series. As a reader, I appreciated learning a little more about what becoming a vampire is like in the world of the series and learning that it’s not necessarily as “cool” as the series had led the reader to believe up until now. And I thought that Mahiru approaching Anko was the perfect place to end the volume. In Volume Three, I could tell there was something “off” about him, and suspected a vampire was involved. This final scene seems to prove that my thoughts on Mahiru were correct. I suspect that Anko is going to have a larger part to play in the series and that we haven’t seen the last of her.

I wasn’t entirely sure about Call of the Night by the time I finished reading Volume One, but now that I’m four volumes in, I can say that I’ve gained an appreciation for this series. I genuinely want to find out what happens next. And I think readers who have followed the series up to this point will not be disappointed in how the story continues in Volume Four.

The reviewer was provided a review copy by VIZ Media

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