There are several unusual things about Maria. For one thing, he’s a priest (he’s also a he) even though he’s still young enough to be in high school. For another, vampires attack him all the time, as if especially drawn to his blood. And then there’s the vampire called Bloody Mary, who shows up, protects Maria from the other bloodsuckers, and then asks Maria to kill him.
Maria refuses to kill the young vampire (young in appearance, that is—Mary’s actually 400 years old, and he’s a he too). It doesn’t seem like the right thing to do, especially after he saved Maria’s life. But Mary is insistent, following Maria around, saying he’s been alive for too long and wants to end it all. He even stakes himself through the heart to prove that he can’t kill himself and he needs help.
But why Maria? Mary has mistaken him for his ancestor, an exorcist who lived centuries ago. Maria assures the vampire that he’s not the same man, but then Mary reveals some interesting facts about Maria’s lineage. You see, th
e blood of his ancestor gives Maria two conflicting powers: it gives Maria the power to perform exorcisms, but if a vampire drinks his blood, they’ll get immense power.
Eventually they come to an agreement: Mary will protect Maria from thirsty vampires if Maria kills Mary in the end. Once the quirky premise is established, the book has some humor, particularly from the overly emotional Mary, who’s sometimes drawn in a chibi style to show how childish he can be. His desperate desire for death is often used for comic relief. There’s also lots of pretty boys, and some shonen-ai elements, especially when Maria lets Mary drink his blood.
On top of all this, Bloody Mary also has mystery and intrigue. The first volume hints at the main characters’ dark pasts and a secret connection between them. A few other characters come in partway through the book with the promise of more dark secrets and good material. Among the many vampire manga out there, Bloody Mary stands out thanks to its premise, characters and storyline. Recommended.