[[quoteright:350:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/nightwalker-4.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:350:Shido doesn't have to sparkle. Eat your heart out, [[Literature/{{Twilight}} Bella]]!]]

''Nightwalker: The Midnight Detective'' (''Mayonaka no Tantei Nightwalker'') is a TwelveEpisodeAnime VampireDetective series. It follows a [[TheAtoner repentant]] [[FriendlyNeighborhoodVampire vampire]] named Tatsuhiko Shido in his struggle to [[{{Masquerade}} covertly]] protect the citizens of his adopted city from other, less friendly creatures of the night. Also worth mentioning is the peculiar composition of the show - it's divided into two portions that don't feel quite alike, and look markedly different. Also it's [[AnimeOfTheGame based on a computer game]] that [[AdaptationDisplacement barely anyone has heard of]]. Even in Japan.

Despite the other inconsistencies, the same writers work on the show throughout and the setting remains consistent. It takes place in a Japanese city where our FriendlyNeighborhoodVampire Shido works as a private investigator, specializing in supernatural cases - particularly cases which involve a race of demons dubbed Nightbreeds. Joining him are Yayoi Matsunaga, an agent for a [[TheMenInBlack anti-Nightbreed organization dubbed the NOS]]; Riho Yamazaki, a teenage orphan (courtesy of Nightbreeds) who works as Shido's GirlFriday; and Guni, a [[SnarkyNonHumanSidekick little green imp with bat wings]] who often hides in Shido's hair.

Antagonizing them is Cain, [[ILoveyouVampireSon the vampire who made Shido what he is today, who still harbors feelings for him]].

So what happened with this show? It was initially planned as an {{OVA}}, but ended up becoming a TV series by means of tacking on lower-budget episodes to fill it out. Effectively, Nightwalker has two different animation staffs, but attempts to pass itself off as a unified production [[note]]Both halves were done by {{AIC}} despite this[[/note]]. To go even further, the game it's based on is an {{HGame}} - in fact, Nightwalker is the first anime tv series based on an adult game[[note]]earlier adaptations of this sort are all {{OVA}}s[[/note]]. (The game is [[NoExportForYou Japan only]] (of course) and obscure even by those standards.) In comparison to the game, the anime series is a pleasantly ''Series/ForeverKnight''-ed up AlternateContinuity of its source material.

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!!This series contains examples of :

* AbortedArc: The [[ArcWords Golden Dawn]] -- some complex scheme involving [[spoiler:[[HalfHumanHybrid human/nightbreed hybrids]]]] - is set up as a big deal event in the early episodes, but it gets dropped [[spoiler:before the baby is even born]].
* ActionGirl: Gun-toting secret agent Yayoi.
* AgentPeacock: Cain can overpower Shido without even mussing his pretty hair.
* AllJustADream: Episode 12, in which [[spoiler:[[MonsterFromBeyondtheVeil Riho's deceased parents return as nightbreeds]], forcing Shido to kill them (again) in front of her. The psychological trauma causes Riho to give in to her vampire nature, and she murders Yayoi and Guni. just as Shido strikes the final blow to Riho,]] he wakes to discover it was all a hallucination caused by Cain.
* TheAnimeOfTheGame: Yes, the [[{{HGame}} eroge]] visual novel came first by about 5 years. No, Cain does NOT appear in the game.
** The game also got an UpdatedRerelease around the time the anime aired.
* ArtShift: From episode 5 onward the show has new character designs. This leads to . . .
** AdaptationDyeJob: Yayoi has dark reddish hair until episode 5, when her hair becomes black. Shido's eyes change from gold to blue and his hair gets a lot longer; Riho goes from [[BrainyBrunette brunette]] to [[FieryRedhead redhead]]; Cain . . . "dye job" falls short of expressing how different Cain looks. AdaptationalAttractiveness might be better.
** The shift from lighter to darker and more intense colors may be the intentional result of a [[ToneShift shift of tone]] in the anime, a visual way of expressing that the setting is becoming [[DarkerAndEdgier "darker"]], literally and metaphorically.
* AwesomeMccoolname: "Tatsuhiko Shido" (purple-wysteria dragon-son) is [[NoNameGiven merely the character's current alias]], and too over the top for Guni to hold back from snarking about it.
* BadassInANiceSuit: Yayoi favors business-like attire ([[{{Stripperific}} short skirts not withstanding]]) and she's a secret agent.
* BadassLongcoat: Shido sports one in the second set of character designs. In the first set of designs, he occasionally wears a ConspicuousTrenchcoat to protect himself from the sun.
* {{Bishonen}}: Shido. Cain, from episode 5 on. The "angel" in episode 10.
* BlondGuysAreEvil: And they don't come more evil than Cain.
* BloodyMurder: Vampires in "Nightwalker" can [[ShapeshifterWeapon transform their blood into weapons]]. Shido uses a number of forms, but seems to prefer a sword. (While Riho has yet to do so, [[spoiler:the events of episode 12 suggest that she is capable of it]].)
* BodyHorror: What happens when a Nightbreed possesses a human.
* CallBack: Shido buys a silver cross pendant for Riho in episode 3, jokingly acting like it has power over him. [[OurVampiresAreDifferent It doesn't]]. In episode 4, [[spoiler:Cain rips the cross off Riho's neck and gives her a mortal injury]]. After all, it's really just a trinket.
* CanonForeigner: Technically there are many, since the show is an AlternativeContinuity of the game it's based on. Cain is the biggie, though - Shido doesn't even ''have'' a sire in the game.
* CharmPerson: Cain frequently attempts to mesmerize Shido, and the only thing that keeps it from working is HeroicWillpower.
* ClingyJealousGirl: Riho. Rather mild case. She gets angry when any other woman seems close to Shido but she [[IJustWanttoBeLoved just pouts about it for the most part.]]
* CreepyChild: This anime's full of them.
* CurseThatCures: [[spoiler:Riho ends up mortally wounded by Cain. In order to save her life, Shido turns her into a vampire. See EmergencyTransformation below.]]
* DealWithTheDevil: Episode 2, where an aspiring actress makes a pact with a Nightbreed in exchange for talent.
* DeathByOriginStory: Each of the protagonists have one. In Yayoi's case, [[spoiler:her twin sister gave her own face to Yayoi to replace Yayoi's disfgured one.]] Riho's parents were killed by nightbreeds as well.
** Shido was close to a little girl and a woman before he became a vampire, though the nature of his relationship with them is unclear. [[spoiler:Maybe they were his wife and daughter, maybe his mother and sister... But after the woman died, the little girl didn't want to live on as a vampire, and killed herself by exposing herself to the sunlight.]]
* DepravedBisexual: Cain, resident dissolute hedonist. Obsession with Shido aside, the world is full of ways to get your evil jollies.
* DoorClosesEnding: In the final scene of the show, Guni hangs a "closed" sign outside Shido's detective office and shuts the door.
* DrugsAreBad: They make it easier for Nightbreeds to possess you.
* EmergencyTransformation: In Episode 4, [[spoiler:Riho]] is mortally wounded by Cain. Shido offers to save her via a literal KissOfTheVampire, and she accepts.
* EveryGirlIsCuterWithHairDecs: Riho wears blue and pink scarves in her hair.
* FriendlyNeighborhoodVampires: Shido, and after episode 4, [[spoiler:Riho]].
* GoryDiscretionShot: We don't see what happened to [[spoiler:Yayoi's body after Riho splits her apart]] in episode twelve. Averted with [[spoiler:Guni]] in the same episode.
* HeadPet: Guni tends to hide in Shido's hair, where she can bust some surprise sparks at enemy nightbreeds.
* IHateYouVampireDad: Shido has nothing but contempt towards Cain, thus Cain's HoYay towards Shido is rather one-sided to say the least.
** [[spoiler:Riho develops this towards Shido in the hallucination in episode 12.]]
* IdentityAmnesia: Cain erased Shido's memories of his human identity. Shido' managed to recover a few snippets on his own, but still can't remember his own name.
* IdiosyncraticEpisodeNaming: Episodes are called "Nights".
* IronicEcho: "Because I'm a vampire." Shido says it after [[spoiler:killing Riho's parents-turned-Nightbreed]], as he believes he has to use his powers to protect humans. It turns out, it was also said by Cain a shis justification for consuming humans wantonly.
* KarmaHoudini: The Nightbreed that is seen killing a high-school girl in episode 4 gets away scot-free.
* MasterOfIllusion: Both Cain and Shido use illusions to mislead opponents, but Cain is much, much better at it. In fact, illusions and {{glamour}}s are Cain's preferred methods for making trouble.
* MayDecemberRomance: What happens at the end of episode 12 between [[spoiler:Shido and Riho]].
** [[spoiler:To think, had Riho never become a vampire, it would have been more of a MayflyDecemberRomance.]]
* MyGodWhatHaveIDone: Shido has one of these in a flashback, and again in episode 12.
* NameOfCain
* NamesToKnowInAnime: Creator/TakumiYamazaki (Shido), Creator/MaayaSakamoto (Riho), Creator/EmiShinohara (Yayoi), Creator/IkueOtani (Guni) and Creator/HideyukiTanaka (Cain).
** Also present in the English dub, with Creator/LexLang (Cain), his wife SandyFox (Guni) and Creator/RichardCansino (Shido).
* NoNameGiven: Shido's name is just an alias. While this is great for the mystique factor, there's also the justification that he suffers from IdentityAmnesia.
* NonHumanSidekick: Guni. (Matter of fact, she's also a SnarkyNonHumanSidekick.)
* OffModel: Thanks to the designs changing between episodes 4 and 5.
* OtakuOClock: ''Nightwalker'' was one of the first late-night anime series.
* ParentalAbandonment: Riho. Poor Riho.
* PlotInducedStupidity: Episode 6, Shido is stuck in the bottom of a well with a Nightbreed and a little girl. He tries "climbing" out, despite having shown some [[{{Roofhopping}} incredible leaping prowess]] in the previous four episodes. After three days of trying, he then decides to shatter the walls of the well, thus flooding it, and float to the top with the girl.
** Actually, it's explained that Shido was weak (and . . . thirsty) at the time due to the fight that got the three of them stuck down there in the first place.
* PluckyOfficeGirl: Riho is referred to as a tea-pouring errand clerk in episode 1, and that does, in fact, appear to be her main function. She endeavors to be more useful, but . . .
* PrivateEyeMonologue: Particularly pronounced in the English dub.
* ProHumanTranshuman
* RealPlaceBackground: "Nightwalker" is littered with landmarks of Yokohama, Tokyo's more industrial neighbor. For example, episode 1 focuses on the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yokohama_Bay_Bridge Yokohama Bay Bridge]]. Several scenes feature the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yokohama_Marine_Tower Marine Tower]],[[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yokohama_Chinatown chinatown]] and the [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foreign_cemteries_in_Japan#Yokohama Foreigner Cemtery]].
* ShaggyDogStory: Episode 6 sees Shido stuck at the bottom of a well with a Nightbreed and a little girl. The girl is sick and the Breed wants to eat her, and Shido is trying to control his vampiric thirst. Eventually they get out of the well, and the Breed is killed . . . [[spoiler:but it turns out that the girl was actually a vampire and makes her escape before anyone can stop her.]]
* [[DistaffCounterpart Spear Counterpart]]: Shido is the Spear Counterpart to the title character of ''VampirePrincessMiyu''.
** [[spoiler:Shido may have his own DistaffCounterpart in Rin Asogi of ''{{Mnemosyne}}'' even though she's an immortal rather than a vampire.]]
* StalkerWithACrush: Cain wants to have a good relationship with Shido, that's all! Of course, his idea of a good relationship revolves around them terrorizing the night together . . . and his methods involve destroying things that Shido holds dear until he gets the picture.
* ThisIsGonnaSuck: Said by Guni when [[spoiler:Riho leaves Shido]] in episode 12. [[spoiler:She was right.]]
* TranshumanTreachery: This trope figures into Shido's backstory. [[spoiler:When Shido first becomes a vampire, he is immediately overcome by his new HorrorHunger and proceeds to slaughter the citizens of his hometown. He gets better after a while, but only in the most {{angst}}-inducing of circumstances: he finds himself kneeling in the town square surrounded by corpses and holding the exsanguinated body of his daughter/little sister/daughter-to-be.]] [[MyGodWhatHaveIDone He reacts like one would expect.]]
* WhipItGood: One of the several forms Shido uses for his blood weapons. Also, this is the only armament that Cain is shown to use. And that's very apropos.
* WhoWantsToLiveForever: Slightly subverted. Shido thinks of his eternal life as a curse, being forced to see all his loved ones die, but [[spoiler:Vampire-turned Riho]] promises she' ll always be by his side now so he won't have to feel lonely, leading to a rather sweet CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming in the series.
** Episode 5 focuses on a recently turned vampire [[spoiler:Riho]] dealing with this trope. One notable scene is when she freaks out 2 of her classmates with her apathetic, almost envious reaction upon learning of another classmate's death.
* XMeetsY: ''InterviewWithTheVampire'' meets ''Series/ForeverKnight''.
** The DVD features a quote that describes it as such, throwing Series/{{Angel}} in for good measure.
* YouGottaHaveBlueHair: Lavender in Shido's case.
** As for Yayoi, [[spoiler:see AdaptationDyeJob above.]]


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