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Darker Than Black - Gemini of the Meteor - 2 Seasons

Season 1
4.1 out of 5 stars (18) IMDb 8/10

A new and deadly breed of covert agents walks the streets. These assassins and spies wield bizarre supernatural powers to carry out the dirty work of others. One among these operatives is more mysterious than the rest - the Black Reaper. His true identity remains unknown, but as his path weaves through the alleys of Tokyo, blood is spilled on both sides of the law.

Starring:
Hidenobu Kiuchi, Matthew Leonhart

Available to watch on supported devices.

Episode 23 is currently unavailable

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Season 1
1. The Fallen Star of a Contract... (Part 1)
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A new and deadly breed of covert agent walks the streets. Known as Contractors, these assassins and spies wield bizarre supernatural powers to carry out the dirty work of others. It's a new age of confusion, and the rules of engagement have changed.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: April 5, 2007

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2. The Fallen Star of a Contract... (Part 2)

Hei's latest task is to keep his fugitive companion, Chiaki, at ease - a woman harboring government secrets and in search of freedom. Hunted by Contractor and cop alike, Hei might keep her safe for now. But nobody can run forever in a world of deception.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: April 12, 2007

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3. A New Star Shines in the Dawn Sky... (Part 1)

The Contractors weren.t the only product of Hell's Gate and Tahara is the only human to have ever survived a journey into the void. Now in isolation, Hei is willing to chaperone his daughter, but a suffering and lonely child is likely to act out.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: April 19, 2007

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4. A New Star Shines in the Dawn Sky... (Part 2)

Mai now wields the powers of a Contractor. Unaware of her dangerous state, she staggers through the streets with deadly fire lighting her path. The roots of her new skills bloom from the sins of her father, and his guilty confession offers no absolution.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: April 26, 2007

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5. Red Giant over Eastern Europe... (Part 1)

After suffering a fall from grace, notorious Contractor Havoc is back on the scene. And it seems every agency with an interest in the Gate wants to bring her in. With red tape slowing things down, Hei has the skills to cut through the diplomatic mire.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: May 3, 2007

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6. Red Giant over Eastern Europe... (Part 2)

The infamous Havoc's powers have vanished, but she may still be able to help Hei solve the riddle of his vanished sister. The two enigmas with the mysterious bond will travel to the strangest place to seek a solution? Hell's Gate.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: May 10, 2007

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7. The Scent of Gardenias Lingers in the Summer Rain... (Part 1)

For private-eye Gai Kurasawa, a simple lost pet case quickly turns into a web of death and suspicion. But a sultry woman's charms hold much sway, and he will do what he must to solve the case. It is likely not by chance that Hei happens to be around.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: May 17, 2007

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8. The Scent of Gardenias Lingers in the Summer Rain... (Part 2)

What began as a search for a lost pet has turned into an investigation of a freshly discovered corpse. The detective stumbles upon a suspect, but the crimes committed by the man are far more incredible than those of which he is accused.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: May 24, 2007

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9. The White Dress, Stained with the Girl?s Dreams and Blood... (Part 1)

In order to get to the bottom of multiple gangland murders, Kirihara gets all dolled up and mingles with the highest ranks of the local mob, courtesy of a childhood friendship with the boss's daughter, Alice, who shares a weighty secret with Kirihara.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: May 31, 2007

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10. The White Dress, Stained with the Girl?s Dreams and Blood... (Part 2)

The freaks of Hell's Gate wage supernatural war high above the city. Blood and electricity jump through the air. One trap becomes another and Kirihara and Saito enter a nightmare. The one tapped to protect Alice now becomes her undoing.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: June 7, 2007

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11. When One Takes Back What Was Lost Within the Wall...(Part 1)

Black Reaper's new mission is to infiltrate PANDORA and recover a much-desired artifact that might hold the answers to questions that haven't even been asked. When Hei goes undercover, he is subjected to risky research. It seems there's been a murder.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: June 14, 2007

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12. When One Takes Back What Was Lost Within the Wall... (Part 2)

The Gate once more offers new riddles to those who investigate its power, and the fresh mysteries lead Hei to even more questions. Clues are popping up in the chaos surrounding Corinna's death, and the signs point to Contractor involvement.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: June 21, 2007

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13. A Heart Unswaying on the Water?s Surface...(Part 1)

The somber Doll, Yin, has no idea that so many are seeking her company after an encounter with a rival faction leaves her wandering the streets. Faces from her past and present comb the city, but not all who search for Yin are looking to keep her safe.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: June 28, 2007

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14. A Heart Unswaying on the Water?s Surface... (Part 2)

A would-be savior offers a chance for Yin to abandon the life of espionage and murder, and return to her home. But there can be no peace for Yin. She carries the burdens of personal tragedy heavy upon her back, and atonement could very well last forever.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: July 5, 2007

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15. Memories of Betrayal in an Amber Smile... (Part 1)

A wave of terrorism is washing over Tokyo. With so many secret agencies vying for control of the mysteries of Hell's Gate, blame might be tough to assign - though the reappearance of a Contractor named Amber might serve to narrow the list of suspects.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: July 12, 2007

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16. Memories of Betrayal in an Amber Smile... (Part 2)

Tokyo is locked down as chaos follows Amber and the members of Evening Primrose. The Black Reaper knows the destruction that can be unleashed if Amber isn't stopped - and he's willing to risk the wrath of his own team to thwart her.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: July 19, 2007

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17. A Love Song Sung from a Trash Heap... (Part 1)

Kirihara's questions remain unanswered. BK201 and Amber. Are they friends or foes? Hei doesn't have a lot of people he can call confidant, but low level gangster Sakurai Kenji will do for now. Kenji is charged by his boss to care for a black-market Doll.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: July 26, 2007

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18. A Love Song Sung from a Trash Heap... (Part 2)

The Black Reaper's team is hunting for a missing black-market Doll - and the prize appears on his doorstep, care of his new friend, Kenji. The mafioso has developed feelings for the girl, inciting him to make the dangerous decision to leave the family.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: August 2, 2007

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19. Dreaming Shallow, Uninebriated... (Part 1)

BK201 has a new mission: Assassinate the prophet of a religious cult devoted to worshipping Hell's Gate. But this will be tough. The leader of the sect is mysterious, appearing only once a year - and it is suspected that she has supernatural abilities.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: August 9, 2007

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20. Dreaming Shallow, Uninebriated... (Part 2)

After the botched attempt on Alma's life, Black Reaper's team must regroup and try again, and they've added a new name to the kill list. Shihoko must go away for good. Should she survive, Huang will pay with his life.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: August 16, 2007

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21. City Under Crackdown, Moist with Tears... (Part 1)

The Contractor underground is waging war, and the violence is escalating. A valuable Gate researcher has been abducted. The American Embassy is under attack. Kirihara will have to reach into her reserve of determination to keep pushing for justice.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: August 30, 2007

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22. City Under Crackdown, Moist with Tears... (Part 2)

Members of many factions have gathered in EPR headquarters, and the fate of the world is the topic of discussion - at least the world as Amber sees it. The Black Reaper will have to face the fact that his most hated rival might be his only hope.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: September 6, 2007

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23. God is In His Heaven...

The Black Reaper was there the day Heaven's Gate vanished, and some think he might be responsible. His team is paying the price for the suspicions. Amber offers to fill in the blanks of his memory as both sides prepare for their final acts of war.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: September 13, 2007

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24. Meteor Shower...

Kirihara has searched long and hard for BK201's true identity, and what she discovers of his past is shocking, but the impending destruction of Tokyo is foremost on the minds facing off in this final battle.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: September 20, 2007

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25. Does the Reaper Dream of Darkness Darker Than Black?

Some call the Contractors the next step of human evolution, but their kind has changed even since they first appeared. The remorseless calculation at some point began to reform. BK201 has been chosen by fate to usher in a new era within this new age.

TV-MA Runtime: 24 minutes Release date: September 27, 2007

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26. Beneath Cherry Blossoms in Full Bloom...

Within the Contractor underground, intrigue and murder surround a stolen chemical. When the pages of Otsuka's work reveal details that point to the coveted substance, BK201 might be forced to write the final chapter of the young author's tale.

TV-MA Runtime: 23 minutes Release date: March 26, 2008

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By The Matrix Fan VINE VOICE on August 22, 2009
Format: DVD
Years ago I watched the movie Akira and thought it was the most groundbreaking animated film I ever laid eyes on. One thing I learned from my introduction into Japanese Animation is this: without a compelling story, no one will want to know more. After watching Volume 1 of Darker Than Black, it looks like I've found another story that piqued my interest.

Darker Than Black takes place in the not-too-distant future of Japan, where an area simply known as "Hell's Gate" is shrouded in secrecy. Once Hell's Gate appeared, the Contractors showed up soon after.

A Contractor is a person with a unique superpower such as levitation, electroshock or teleportation, among others. Each time their superpower is used, the Contractor must "pay their price" and complete an obsessive/compulsive action afterward such as eating a plant, dog-earing book pages, eating, smoking, or even breaking one's own fingers. Since they feel no guilt, Contractors are the perfect tools for spying and assassination.

Over the course of 5 episodes on this disc, we follow the adventures of a Contractor known as BK-201/Hei, living a double life as an exchange student called Li. He comes into contact with other Contractors, Dolls, government agencies, and much more. Japanese Animation usually leaps right into the storyline and explanations are revealed further down the road, and Darker Than Black is no exception. While nothing about Hei or his companions is fully explained, we are given just enough information to pique our curiosity and watch the next episode.

The animation was quite good - I included a few screen captures.
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Format: DVD
I enjoyed "Darker Than Black" more than it likely deserves. Being that this only contains one disc, with only 5 episodes, it is hard to fully judge the series.

No spoilers from me, but the storyline is set in the near future, the Hell's Gate has opened and all of the stars in the sky have been replaced by fake stars that are representations of "Contractors". The episodes on the disc somewhat slowly bring us up to speed on the back story of beings with special abilities, like "Contractors" (remorseless assassins with special powers that come with a price), "Dolls" (basically blank humans who can be implanted with temporary memories/personalities or who can perform specific functions like remote sensing and observation), and some hybrids thrown into the mix as well.

There are several groups of players interacting, including a special police unit that tracks "Contractors", The Syndicate (including the main "Contractor" Hei/Bk201), various governments (references to French, Americans, and British spy agencies), and other criminal groups (all employing "Contractors").

As the storyline unfolds it becomes apparent that not all "Contractors" follow the stereotype and in the cliffhanger final episode, we learn something about Hei's motivation (again, no spoilers). It was enough of a hook that I will likely buy the next volume: Darker Than Black, Vol. 2

The animation was passable overall. It has some truly beautiful artwork in some scenes and some of the flattest animation in others. There was anime style blood and gore, but far less than I have come to expect.

Overall this is an interesting series, recommended for fans of the genre.
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Format: DVD
An area of paranormal space called Hell's Gate formed near Tokyo, around the time people with mysterious powers -- called "contractors" -- started appearing.

That's the concept behind the anime series "Darker than Black." While the concept -- mysterious people with dangerous psychic powers and a powerful young man hunting them -- doesn't sound terribly interesting on its own, the way it's handled makes it a truly memorable experience. Countless mysteries, solid writing and a bloodspattered noir atmosphere boost "Darker than Black Volume 1" above the norm.

Not many anime start with the anti-hero brutally killing someone -- Hei, a mysterious young man in a black coat and mask, hunts down and kills a blond man on a rooftop. Meanwhile, a young woman with a tragic past is being pursued by the police and a band of contractors, and her new neighbor Li -- who is pretty obviously Hei -- is her only hope for escaping them. Their goal seems to be a mysterious item that her boyfriend left with her, but is it their real objective... or are they really after Hei?

When Hei gets to his new job, he encounters a broken, reclusive scientist who once actually went into the Gate -- and the man's daughter, who seems to have fires pop up randomly around her. Hei befriends the girl as he tries to figure out if she's a contractor or a moratorium -- a contractor with uncontrollable powers. The answer to this puzzle lies inside her father's experiences inside the Gate....

And MI6 brings a mysterious woman -- a "regressor" named Havoc, who has lost her powers -- into Tokyo for research, along with a charming, brutal MI6 contractor named November 11.
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