Call of the Night (よふかしのうた, Yofukashi no Uta) is a manga series written and illustrated by Kotoyama, creator of Dagashi Kashi. The series follows a junior high student named Kou Yamori, who has recently stopped going to school and developed insomnia. Ko starts to wander the streets at night, where he meets and befriends a girl named Nazuna Nanakusa, who turns out to be a vampire. After having his blood sucked and talking to Nazuna, Kou asks her to make him into a vampire, only to learn that in order to become one he must first fall in love with Nazuna.
This work contains examples of:
- The Alleged House: After Yamori demolishes Nazuna's apartment while fighting Susuki, she moves to a storage unit under a bridge. Nazuna's new "home" doesn't have electricity, running water or even a toilet. While she doesn't mind the reduced space, Yamori very much can't tolerate it, and strong-arms Nazuna into finding a proper home.
- Ape Shall Never Kill Ape: Vampires killing other vampires is frowned upon according to Niko in the final episode of the anime.
- Bland-Name Product: Nazuna owns a Buzaar System by Sunn.
- Blatant Lies: After Nazuna’s first bite on Kou’s neck, he reveals himself to be awake the whole time. Nazuna says it was a really big mosquito, while there is still blood on her mouth. Kou tries to pretend that he believes her, but it's such a bad lie that he really can't.
- Blue-and-Orange Morality: The best way to describe the morality of vampires compared to that of humans is "alien".
- They seem to consider flashing your neck the equivalent of dropping your pants; Nazuna calls Yamori a pervert whenever he does it.
- Because they reproduce by sucking blood from people who fall in love with them, vampires have turned seduction into a pseudo-science. Vampires like Nazuna who do not go out of their way to create more offspring or make themselves more appealing are seen as weirdos.
- The vampires in Niko's clique are perfectly fine with seducing Yamori (who's 14 years old) into falling for one of them if it means they won't have to kill him, but they are still visibly shocked when Yamori implies that he's not a virgin (he is, but he's annoyed that they made the assumption).
- Book Ends: In the first episode, Ko meets Nazuna for the first time when the latter surprises the former at a beer vending machine. In the last episode, after a momentary lapse in their friendship, Ko eventually reunites with Nazuna at the same vending machine, while playing the same trick on her.
- Childhood Friends: Akira, who lives in the same apartment complex, is Ko's.
- Crash-Into Hello: Happens in a dating sim that Ko, Nazuna and Akira were playing in Night 10. And it’s lampshaded and mocked by Ko.Ko: What the heck?! There was plenty of room on the street! Why’d she bump into me?!
- Creator Cameo: The two guys who hit on Nazuna at the pool in Episode 6 are drawn to look like Creepy Nuts, the duo who do much of the anime's music. Notably they take the rejection quite well.
- Dramatic Spine Injury: In ch. 115, Susuki shows up out of nowhere intending to use Anko Uguisu to get to Kiku Hoshimi and kill her. Azami, who has been talking with Anko, tries to stop her, but is decisively defeated when she phases through the floor and kicks him in the back hard enough to snap his spine. She then compounds the damage by doing a Neck Snap on him, as this will add even more time that he'll have to spend healing before he can come after her.
- Dynamic Entry: When Seri tries to glomp Ko, Nazuna blocks her by flying in out of nowhere, kneeing her in the face and sending her hurtling head-first into a signpost.
- Easily Forgiven: Whe they meet again for the first time since trying to murder Akiyama and shooting Seri in the face, Anko casually apologizes to Seri for both counts. Seri just as casually forgives her.
- Empathic Environment: In the anime, to indicate how different are the vibes of the city at the morning and at night, scenes in the morning tend to be dull-colored despite the bright sun, giving it a harsher feel, where as the night is colored with bright, vivid colors of every stripe, with a great amount of stars in the sky, indicating to the viewer that despite the darkness, this is the livelier, more beautiful time of the day.
- Enemy Mine: Yamori, Nazuna, Anko, Azami and Susuki join forces to stand against Hoshimi Kiku, who not only threatens the survival of vampires as a whole with her actions, but apparently intends to kill Mahiru just to prove that her love for him is real. She's such a threat that Azami, one of Kiku's offspring, is determined to kill her himself if that's what it takes.
- First-Name Basis: Kou starts calling Nazuna by her first name in Night 3, to make their relationship feel more equal. This gets her flustered, but she reciprocates the gesture by calling Kou by his first name from their next meeting onwards.
- The Fog of Ages: Over time, vampires will forget their time as humans. This can be somewhat remedied by inoculating themselves with their own blood preserved from before turning into vampires, which will allow them to briefly restore their lost memories.
- Freeze-Frame Bonus: Nazuna owns a copy of Darkstalkers: The Night Warriors.
- Friendlessness Insult: Nazuna jokingly mocks Yamori over not having any human friends. Eventually she drops it since it stops being funny. And because it turns out Yamori does have human friends.
- Friendly Neighborhood Vampire: Nazuna is the prime example, with her charisma, approachable vibes, and social outlook making her easy to get along with, even with three drunk strangers who have no idea who the hell she is in episode 1.
- Friends with Benefits: A vampiric version in Ko's relationship with Nazuna, who refers to their relation as a physical one. Along with just hanging out, Nazuna feeds on Ko’s blood once a night, something she compares to... coitus.
- Genre Shift: From a quirky if dark romantic comedy, to a mystery thriller, to superhuman vampires trying to kill each other, the series can jump its idea of genre and tone even mid-chapter/episode. It never quite settles into one thing entirely, though, besides the comedy at its core.
- Get a Room!: Akira in Night 10, when Nazuna starts feeding on Ko right in front of her. Ko also calls her out for it.Nazuna: But being watched adds spice, doesn’t it?
Akira: Don’t use me as seasoning!
- Guy on Guy Is Hot: Implied by Nazuna in episode 1. Ko mentions he doesn't like girls (in his school at least). Nazuna assumes he's gay and outright says she "approves." But he says it's more complicated than just not having a crush on anyone.
- Healing Factor: Vampires appear to have this: Seri was able to reattach her severed arm without much issue, while Akiyama's vision got better after he was turned.
- Horror Hunger: Vampires can go for about 10 years without consuming blood before they lose it. Yamori and his friends were unfortunate enough to find out what that looks like when a vampire assaulted Akira.
- I Always Wanted to Say That: When Kou proposes to exchange contact info (so he wouldn’t have to keep searching for her), Nazuna does this:Nazuna: Hey, Kou. There’s something I always wanted to say. Are you ready for it?
Kou: ...Go ahead.
Nazuna: Like... do you do Line?
Kou: Nope, don’t have the app.
Nazuna: Me neither!
Kou: Then why’d you ask?!
- In Vino Veritas: When Nazuna starts trying to distance herself from Yamori in increasingly less subtle ways, Yamori angrily leaves her apartment... and returns minutes later with a can of beer, telling her she can get drunk and use that as an excuse to speak what's actually on her mind. The initially cold Nazuna suddenly breaks into a smirk and responds by telling Yamori she's not so much of a lightweight that one beer will be enough to get her plastered.
- The Insomniac: What sparks the series, as Ko has trouble sleeping and decides to wander at night.
- Nazuna first demonstrates this by phasing through a wall while Yamori blocks the door. Eventually, it is established that all vampires can do this.
- Carelessly phasing through matter can, however, result in severed body parts.
- Susuki later demonstrates that you can actually touch a phasing vampire by phasing yourself. She compares this phenomenon to magnetism: two vampires in similar phasing states will repel each other, while those in different states will harmlessly phase through.
- It's the Journey That Counts: Yamori is of the mind that journeys of self-discovery are this trope. He shares this line of thought with Nazuna, who thinks it would be super embarrassing to go on such a journey only to find that her happiness was at her home all along.
- Killed to Uphold the Masquerade: Yamori is threatened with this by the vampire council when they are led to believe that either Nazuna won't turn him into a vampire or he doesn't want to become one, since they can't allow normal humans to learn of their existence. Even after Yamori clarifies that he does want to become a vampire and that Nazuna has agreed to turn him into one, the trope still applies once it's revealed that humans can't turn after a year since the first bite. Even then, it soon becomes clear that the time limit is just an excuse to not kill him.
- Knight of Cerebus: The manga gets slightly less peaceful with the introduction of Seri Kikiyou, who has no issues resorting to violence and who ends up introducing Ko to the other vampire girls, resulting in the one year time limit Ko has to become a vampire, lest the group kills him for knowing too much. The danger meter ticks over once again thanks to Anko Ugiusu and her vendetta against the vampires, which results in the darkest plot arc the series has had to date.
- Kryptonite Factor: Vampires in this universe are almost entirely immortal with one exception: if they encounter something meaningful from their life prior to being a vampire it opens them up to being killed and if they're exposed to it long enough can kill them outright.
- Male Gaze: Nazuna is the series's resident Ms. Fanservice, and in both the manga and the anime, the 'camera' is usually just as enthusiastic about her appearance and clothing choices as Kou is.
- The Night Owl: Naturally a fair number of these show up, given that the series takes place almost exclusively at night. Ko himself being the biggest.
- Our Vampires Are Different: They have the stock flight, super strength, accelerated healing, long life, and desire to drink blood. However, vampires in this series has a number of differences; most notably, in order to change into one a human must have fallen in love with the vampire first or it won't take. Once a vampire has picked a human to turn, they have a year to get them to fall in love after the first bite or they won't ever turn. This is part of why the vampires we meet have turned being desirable into an almost science to make it happen as fast as possible, which just puts off Ko entirely. Also Vampires in this universe don't have to drink blood regularly, just once every 10 years or so or they'll go berserk.
- Out-of-Character Alert: It takes him a while to notice, but Yamori is able to realize that Nazuna has stopped sucking his blood ever since they returned from Hokkaido.
- Recurring Extra: Those three drunk men from the first chapter? They show up every now and then, utterly plastered every time and ready for another drink.
- Saying Too Much: Nazuna is perfectly fine with Kou confessing to Akira that he wants to be a vampire when she sleeps at her place. But then she tries to shush him when he reveals how to become a vampire. To no avail.
- Second Episode Introduction: The opening of the anime sets up and presents several relevant characters to the plot, but they wouldn't be introduced until way later. On a 13 episode season, the Vampire Council only appeared in episode 7, while Mahiru was introduced in episode 8. Akira is a more common example, appearing in the cliffhanger of episode 2.
- School Is for Losers: Both of the protagonists’ opinion on school. Ko just finds school so boring that he wouldn’t even visit it in a video game.
- Shout-Out: One episode features a parody of Doki Doki Literature Club!, complete with obvious stand-ins for three of the four main characters.
- Skipping School: When the series starts, Ko has stopped going to school.
- Slut-Shaming: At one point Yamori and Nazuna take a while to find each other because Nazuna was looking for a rando to suck their blood. Yamori is peeved at this and compares it to cheating; when Nazuna compares it to simply having a little variety in her meals, Yamori reminds her of how she constantly describes feeding as "copulation", and asks her if she "copulates with just anyone". Nazuna finds herself unable to retort in the face of Yamori's logic, though later she admits she was looking for him all along; she's just too embarrassed to admit it.
- Speed Dating: In what is likely the most exaggerated version of this trope, Nazuna asks Yamori out then dumps him in five seconds so that he's no longer "a boy who's never dated before". And then steams in embarrassment once he's out of her sight.
- Spotting the Thread: Yamori notices a few inconsistencies regarding Arisa's stalker, and manages to deduce that no one is stalking her; Arisa is taking selfies in order to pretend that someone is stalking her so that she can convince everyone that she's still popular.
- Stealth Hi/Bye: Nazuna is particularly fond of doing this to Yamori; their very first meeting had her pull it on him as he was buying beer from a vending machine. Yamori later gives Nazuna a taste of her own medicine in similar circumstances, and their respective reactions are reversed.
- Surprisingly Realistic Outcome: Even vampires need money. Nazuna’s "cuddle buddy” business is an actual business. She points out that this is how she and Ko got entry into a pool party and a love motel.
- Supernaturally Delicious and Nutritious: According to Nazuna, Ko's blood is incredibly tasty.
- Tele-Frag: Vampires, being able to phase through solid matter, can do this both accidentally and deliberately, depending on the circumstance. Nazuna first demonstrates this by phasing her arm through a wall before de-phasing, leaving her with a bleeding stump for an arm and the rest of it on the other side of the wall (she reattaches it later). Susuki demonstrates what happens when you do it deliberately after Yamori's punch phases through her, leaving Susuki with a hole in her chest and Yamori with a severed arm after she de-phases.
- That Man Is Dead: It's an unspoken rule among vampires to not discuss the days from when they were still human. They agree upon it instinctively in order to prevent others from learning their weaknesses.
- Titled After the Song: The series is named after a single by Japanese hip-hop duo Creepy Nuts (the mangaka acquired permission to use the name of the song for the manga). Said song also serves as the ending theme song for the anime adaptation to acknowledge this.
- Vampires Are Sex Gods:
- According to Nazuna, vampires have a glamour that attracts humans. All the better to feed.
- Vampires also turn humans on the condition that they fall in love with them within a year since the first bite. Nazuna, of course, compares this to reproducing, and adds that getting new relatives every time you eat would be awkward and annoying.
- Vampire Hunter: Anko Uguisu, a detective who turns out to have a grudge against vampires.
- Vampire Vannabe: Kou's desire is to eventually become a vampire.
- White-and-Grey Morality: It's hard to say even the more dangerous characters are truly evil, more that they're just misunderstood or misunderstanding. A recurring theme of the show is that people are more complex than they initially seem and that everyone has problems that can make them act in strange ways at times. Even the vampire teacher who attacks Akira, who is probably the closest thing to a scary monster in the show, has a tragic and understandable motivation. Even after the council of vampire girls decides to kill Ko if he doesn't turn into a vampire Ko still ends up getting to know most of them better and helping them out with their problems and they come to like him.
- Your Days Are Numbered: The Vampire girls forbid the knowledge of their existence to be known to regular humans, and are willing to kill them to keep it that way. They make a temporary exception for Ko, who is actively trying to become a vampire… however, he only has a year. Once bit by a vampire, humans only have a year to turn.