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Darker than Black is a Japanese anime television series directed and written by Tensai Okamura, animated by Bones, and produced by Aniplex that originally aired 25 episodes from April 5, 2007 to September 27, 2007.[1] Darker than Black was originally written for anime form and is not based on any other media. However, a manga has been created based on it. The series tells of the exploits of Hei and his Syndicate comrades operating in a post-apocalyptic Tokyo in his pursuit to discover the secrets behind the Hell's Gate.

The series premiered on Tokyo Broadcasting System, Mainichi Broadcasting System, and their affiliated stations on April 5, 2007 and ran until September 27, 2007. The series also aired on Animax from May 8, 2007 to October 23, 2007.[2] It was then released to nine DVDs, each containing three episodes, except for the first DVD, which had only two.[3] The DVDs were released between July 25, 2007 and March 26, 2008 by Aniplex.[4][5] FUNimation received the license for the series in Region 1 and has released two DVDs compilation with another coming in the future.[6] The first English DVD was released on November 25, 2008 and the second and third DVDs were released on January 20, 2009 and March 10, 2009 respectively.[7][8][9] Volume 4 was released on May 5, 2009[10] with Volume 5 released on June 23, 2009.[11]

The episodes have four pieces of theme music: two opening themes and two closing themes. "Howling" by Abingdon Boys School served as the opening theme for the first fourteen episodes,[12][13] while episodes fifteen through twenty-three and episode twenty-five had "The Hero Without A Name" by An Cafe as the opening.[14][15][16] Episode twenty-four had no opening theme.[17] "Tsukiakari" by Rie fu served as the closing theme for the first fourteen episodes[12][13] and "Dreams" by High and Mighty Color was the closing theme for the last ten.[14][17] The last episode, episode twenty-five, had no closing theme.[16]


Episode listing

# Title Original airdate[2] English airdate[2]
01 The Fallen Star of a Contract... (Part 1)
"Keiyaku no Hoshi wa Nagareta... (Zenpen)" (契約の星は流れた...(前編))
April 5, 2007 June 16, 2010
The police attempt to arrest a Caucasian man, but he escapes using gravitational power. He lands a short distance away, but while attempting to complete his payment, he is confronted by a mysterious masked man who easily defeats him and demands to know the location of the package. After the defeated man reveals that a girl named Chiaki knows the location of the package, the masked man, Hei, kills the other man. Still in pursuit, the Public Security Bureau Section 4 chief, Misaki Kirihara, is informed of the man's death and discovers his identity as a DGSE agent. She later discusses the man's death with her investigative police squad. Investigating a lead, Yūsuke Saitō and Yutaka Kōno, members of the investigative squad, hang out in a hostess bar and end up pursuing a girl they believe to be Chiaki Shinado. Hei, also known as Li, meets up with her and saves her from the police. When Chiaki meets up with her supposed allies, she is kidnapped, forcing Hei to save her again. However, another contractor punches Hei over the railing of a bridge and knocks Chiaki out, capturing her. She escapes from her kidnappers and meets up with Hei again, collapsing into his arms.
02 The Fallen Star of a Contract... (Part 2)
"Keiyaku no Hoshi wa Nagareta... (Kōhen)" (契約の星は流れた...(後編))
April 12, 2007 June 17, 2010
Hei brings Chiaki back to her apartment and she tells him about contractors. When they return to her room, they find her room ransacked by the men who have been chasing her. Chiaki asks to stay in Hei's room and they spend the night together. They later go out to eat in a diner, but they are interrupted when Chiaki's pursuers appear and attack them. They escape, but Hei is injured as they run. Chiaki reveals her story to Hei and entrusts him with the package that everybody is seeking. The following morning, while on the run from their pursuers, Hei causes Chiaki to collapse and escapes in the ensuing chaos. Hei reveals that he is a contractor and is shot while protecting Chiaki, who is revealed to be a doll. However, he still manages to defeat the other contractors, though Chiaki sacrifices her life to save him in the process.
03 A New Star Shines in the Dawn Sky... (Part 1)
"Shinsei wa Shinonome no Sora ni Kirameku... (Zenpen)" (新星は東雲の空に煌く...(前編))
April 19, 2007 June 18, 2010
A man, the only survivor of his expedition, explores the interior of the Gate and discovers a glowing flower. In the present day, Hei has breakfast and stops by a small store. A schoolgirl, Mai Kashiwagi, misses her train in the morning. Hei checks into a construction site to begin work and meets Kōzō Tahara, the man from the Gate expedition. Two men, monitored by Huang, check into a hotel and reveal their plans to use force to convince Tahara to obey them. Mai awakens in front of a fire and is sent home from her school. When Hei attempts to drive her home, she escapes and runs off with friends. Hei later makes contact with her and entertains her. However, they are attacked as they travel through the city. Mai reacts and an inferno is seen in her eyes as Kirihara is informed of a new star.
04 A New Star Shines in the Dawn Sky... (Part 2)
"Shinsei wa Shinonome no Sora ni Kirameku... (Kōhen)" (新星は東雲の空に煌く...(後編))
April 29, 2007 June 21, 2010
The aftermath of Mai's reaction reveals that she has become a Moratorium. The collective groups pursuing Mai change their plans and her continued impulses cause additional infernos. Kanami Ishizaki, Kirihara's high school friend, discusses the Moratorium with Kirihara. During the full-scale civilian evacuation, Mai reacts again and accidentally kills her friend, Yuka, and Yuka's father. When the police move to retrieve her, they are attacked by Luco, a contractor. He kidnaps Mai and they use her to force Tahara to reveal his research. Tahara tells Hei of the research, but Hei leaves in disgust to retrieve Mai. He is defeated when Mai's kidnappers threaten Mai's life, but Tahara arrives. He hands over the remains of his research, and attempts to kill Mai. Luco kills Tahara, and, in turn, is killed by Hei. Mai transforms fully into a Contractor and is sent off to the Syndicate.
05 Red Giant over Eastern Europe... (Part 1)
"Saiyaku no Akaki Yume wa Tōō ni Kiete... (Zenpen)" (災厄の紅き夢は東欧に消えて...(前編))
May 3, 2007 June 22, 2010
After a trade between a mafia group and a man goes bad, the man uses his Contractor powers to kill the gang. When the boss attempts to escape, the other man is aided by another Contractor. The Contractors are revealed to be MI6 operatives, led by November 11. He and the other contractor, April, retrieve a woman named Havoc. A former Contractor, Havoc is taken in to be researched and examined. She is then transported with the help of Kirihara and the Tokyo police. However, the transport, a helicopter, is a ruse to draw the attacks of other organizations pursuing Havoc. November 11 reveals that he hid Havoc in Kirihara's car, but they are soon attacked by Hei and his team, and Havoc is taken. However, when Huang checks in with Hei, he discovers that Hei has left with Havoc to interrogate her.
06 Red Giant over Eastern Europe... (Part 2)
"Saiyaku no Akaki Yume wa Tōō ni Kiete... (Kōhen)" (災厄の紅き夢は東欧に消えて...(後編))
May 10, 2007 June 23, 2010
Hei interrogates Havoc as to the whereabouts of Amber and Pai, Hei's younger sister, but Havoc does not know anything useful. She offers to help Hei by approaching the Gate and recovering her memories and powers, but that only leads her to wanting her own death. With the MI6 agents in pursuit, her wish may be granted.
07 The Scent of Gardenias Lingers in the Summer Rain... (Part 1)
"Samidare ni Kuchinashi wa Kaori o Hanachi... (Zenpen)" (五月雨にクチナシは香りを放ち...(前編))
May 17, 2007 June 24, 2010
Gai Kurasawa, a private detective, and his partner Kiko Kayanuma, a young girl, are hired by the widow of a cosmetics company executive to search for her lost black cat. They cross paths with Hei, who is on the search of the Contractor killing employers from the very same company. As the two groups continue to peruse in their search, Kurasawa unexpectedly comes across the skeleton of a long dead woman.
08 The Scent of Gardenias Lingers in the Summer Rain... (Part 2)
"Samidare ni Kuchinashi wa Kaori o Hanachi... (Kōhen)" (五月雨にクチナシは香りを放ち...(後編))
May 24, 2007 June 25, 2010
Kurasawa continues his investigation, even suspecting his own client of murder, while Hei continues to go after the body-switching Contractor, Mao, who temporarily switches bodies with a crow and nearly drowns in the process.
09 The White Dress, Stained with the Girl's Dreams and Blood... (Part 1)
"Junpaku no Doresu wa Shōjo no Yume to Chi ni Somaru... (Zenpen)" (純白のドレスは少女の夢と血に染まる...(前編))
May 31, 2007 June 28, 2010
Kirihara, who is investigating a string of murders, ends up at the birthday party of her high school classmate, Alice Wang, who is the daughter of the boss of the Hong Kong mafia, Qing Long Tang. The party is actually a cover for an emergency board meeting related to the deaths of several Qing Long Tang executives, and Hei is also in attendance, posing as a waiter. With the Contractor, named Wei Zhijun, on her side, Alice eliminates Qing Long Tang, but Kirihara is also on her list.
10 The White Dress, Stained with the Girl's Dreams and Blood... (Part 2)
"Junpaku no Doresu wa Shōjo no Yume to Chi ni Somaru... (Kōhen)" (純白のドレスは少女の夢と血に染まる...(後編))
June 7, 2007 June 29, 2010
Hei and Kirihara barely escape from Alice, but Hei goes his own way after reuniting Kirihara with Saitō and goes after the crystal in the stone flower garden. He runs into Wei and loses the crystal in the process. Wei then meets up with Alice, but decides to eliminate her first before going after Kirihara and Saitō.
11 When One Takes Back What Was Lost Within the Wall... (Part 1)
"Kabe no Naka, Nakushita Mono o Torimodosu Toki... (Zenpen)" (壁の中、なくしたものを取り戻すとき...(前編))
June 14, 2007 June 30, 2010
Hei has been asked to infiltrate PANDORA Institute, which is located in the vicinity of the Gate, and retrieve a Meteor Fragment, which even the CIA is after. There, he meets a man named Nick Hillman, and they find that they share the same dream of seeing the real stars.
12 When One Takes Back What Was Lost Within the Wall... (Part 2)
"Kabe no Naka, Nakushita Mono o Torimodosu Toki... (Kōhen)" (壁の中、なくしたものを取り戻すとき...(後編))
June 21, 2007 July 1, 2010
Hei discovers that Nick is a Contractor with powers similar to his own. Hei follows Nick into Hell's Gate, where Nick transforms and Hei recovers the Meteor Fragment.
13 A Heart Unswaying on the Water's Surface... (Part 1)
"Gin'iro no Yoru, Kokoro wa Suimen ni Yureru Koto Naku... (Zenpen)" (銀色の夜、心は水面に揺れることなく...(前編))
June 28, 2007 July 2, 2010
Many years ago Yin, also called Kirsi, is playing the piano under the watch of her teacher, Eelis Kastinen. In the present, Yin has apparently run away. Kurasawa and Kiko are asked by Kastinen to look for Yin.
14 A Heart Unswaying on the Water's Surface... (Part 2)
"Gin'iro no Yoru, Kokoro wa Suimen ni Yureru Koto Naku... (Kōhen)" (銀色の夜、心は水面に揺れることなく...(後編))
July 5, 2007 July 5, 2010
The Syndicate orders Huang and Hei to kill Yin. However, Yin decides to continue working with Hei and the others. Yin then displays emotions by crying. Hei stuns Kastinen, and then erases his memory, on Yin's approval.
15 Memories of Betrayal in an Amber Smile... (Part 1)
"Uragiri no Kioku wa Kohakuiro no Hohoemi... (Zenpen)" (裏切りの記憶は琥珀色の微笑み...(前編))
July 12, 2007 July 6, 2010
April spots Amber and Maki, two operatives of the Evening Primrose, and ends up in a non-fatal explosion. Meanwhile, a chain of bombings occur, the culprit being Maki, that allows the Evening Primrose to steal the Meteor Fragment. November 11, wanting revenge, chases down Amber. Hei, also wanting revenge, chases after her as well.
16 Memories of Betrayal in an Amber Smile... (Part 2)
"Uragiri no Kioku wa Kohakuiro no Hohoemi... (Kōhen)" (裏切りの記憶は琥珀色の微笑み...(後編))
July 19, 2007 July 7, 2010
The Stargazer finally speaks, giving vague information on the Evening Primrose. November 11 kills Maki in a final showdown as Hei finally reaches Amber, who has taken Yin. Kirihara also arrives at their location, but, with the help of Amber's Contractor powers, everyone escapes.
17 A Love Song Sung from a Trash Heap... (Part 1)
"Hakidame de Rabu Songu o Utau... (Zenpen)" (掃きだめでラブソングを歌う...(前編))
July 26, 2007 July 8, 2010
Hei meets Kenji Sakurai of the Nakazawa Family, a clumsy yet ambitious young man. New characters are introduced who live in Hei's apartment building. Later, Kenji is given the assignment of taking care of a Doll by Hitotsubashi, his boss. Hei, Mao, Yin, and Huang try to find the Doll, who is conveniently in the hands of Kenji.
18 A Love Song Sung from a Trash Heap... (Part 2)
"Hakidame de Rabu Songu o Utau... (Kōhen)" (掃きだめでラブソングを歌う...(後編))
August 2, 2007 July 9, 2010
Kenji falls for the Doll, and they try to run away together with Hei's help. While out shopping, Hei is nearly identified by Kirihara as BK-201, but Kirihara doesn't see the relation between Li Sheng Shun and BK-201. Later, Kenji is caught and nearly killed by Hitotsubashi when Hei saves him. Kenji and the Doll successfully run away.
19 Dreaming Shallow, Uninebriated... (Part 1)
"Asaki Yumemishi, Yoi mo Sezu... (Zenpen)" (あさき夢見し、酔いもせず...(前編))
August 9, 2007 July 12, 2010
Hei is sent to infiltrate a religious organization and kill the prophet, named Alma. He is aided by an insider, another Contractor, named Shihoko Kishida, whom Huang appears to know. Amagiri and Alma appear to be in cahoots with Alma providing him with Dolls. A well-meant mistake on Huang's part leads to Shihoko's capture.
20 Dreaming Shallow, Uninebriated... (Part 2)
"Asaki Yumemishi, Yoi mo Sezu... (Kōhen)" (あさき夢見し、酔いもせず...(後編))
August 16, 2007 July 13, 2010
The Syndicate orders Huang to kill Shihoko, and as a secondary directive secretly orders Mao and Hei to kill Huang, and also Alma if Huang fails. In Huang's past we see him falling for Shihoko, and then Shihoko killing his then police partner Isozaki. Isozaki's wife's memory is wiped by the M.E., and Huang is drafted into The Syndicate. He is unable to kill Shihoko, and asks Hei to kill them both. Hei tries to help them run away while Mao refuses to have any involvement. When they arrive at the docks to wait for a boat, Shihoko sees someone from The Syndicate and realizes they cannot escape. For love of Huang, she runs into the path of an oncoming truck and dies.
21 City Under Crackdown, Moist with Tears... (Part 1)
"Shukusei no Machi wa Namida ni Nurete... (Zenpen)" (粛正の街は涙に濡れて...(前編))
August 30, 2007 July 14, 2010
A doctor, named Dr. Schroeder, is abducted by agents of the Evening Primrose, while the American embassy in Tokyo suffers attack from Hei and his team. A new Contractor with the power to teleport herself and others appears as a double agent for the Evening Primrose. Wei reappears, but is scarred from his last encounter with Hei. Kirihara enters the embassy compound only to be detained by PANDORA, and Mao is discovered by Amber. November 11 leaves the MI6 Secret Intelligence Service for the Evening Primrose.
22 City Under Crackdown, Moist with Tears... (Part 2)
"Shukusei no Machi wa Namida ni Nurete... (Kōhen)" (粛正の街は涙に濡れて...(後編))
September 6, 2007 July 15, 2010
Mao is taken by Amber to the headquarters of the Evening Primrose. While there, Amber calls a meeting for all of the leading Contractors of the Evening Primrose, including Mao, and Dr. Schroeder. She reveals that there was a plan to destroy the South American Gate, which would have led to the eventual disappearance of all Contractors worldwide. Dr. Schroeder notes that the plan was interrupted by a mysterious blue light. November 11 meets the head of East Asian MI6 operations, who is revealed to be a member of The Syndicate, and they kill each other. Hei attacks the Evening Primrose to rescue Mao. Hei uses his powers on Amber while Amber activates her meteor fragment, resulting in the illumination of the whole building in a blue light.
23 God is In His Heaven...
"Kami wa Ten ni Imashi..." (神は天にいまし...)
September 13, 2007 July 16, 2010
Eric Nishijima is using a particle accelerator to wipe out the Contractors. Amber gathers numerous Contractors to destroy the accelerator, and Dolls to be used for some other unknown reason. Nijishima, revealed to work with The Syndicate, places a phone call to eliminate Hei and his team. Amber sends a message to Hei via Wei, telling him to meet her in the Gate. Hei agrees and thus Huang, Mao, and Yin assist Hei to infiltrate Hell's Gate with Wei's guidance.
24 Meteor Shower
"Ryūseiu" (流星雨)
September 20, 2007 July 19, 2010
Hei's team, on the orders of Nishijima, has been kicked out of The Syndicate and contracts taken on all their lives. Kirihara discovers that "The Syndicate" is really a collaboration between intelligence agencies of multiple countries and that she herself has been an unknowing member. Hei, Yin, and Mao infiltrate Hell's Gate while Huang detonates a suicide bomb for distraction. Mao is disconnected from The Syndicate's network. As a result, his feral cat behavior takes over, and he runs away. The Contractors of the Evening Primrose launch an attack on PANDORA security forces, leaving the way open for Hei and Yin. The Syndicate takes out the Doll system of the Evening Primrose, leaving Hei with only Yin for guidance as they head towards the interior of Hell's Gate.
25 Does the Reaper Dream of Darkness Darker than Black?
"Shinigami no Miru Yume wa, Kuro yori Kurai Kurayami ka?" (死神の見る夢は、黒より暗い暗闇か?)
September 27, 2007 July 20, 2010
After meeting with Amber, Hei learns that against common knowledge Contractors can become more human than was thought to be possible. Realizing his own position between the world of Contractors and humans, Hei has to make the decisive choice for both. With final farewells to his past comrades inside the Gate, and their support behind his back, Hei's decision brings new future for the world.

OVA

The ninth and final DVD included an unaired original video animation (OVA) that focuses on the romantic relationships between characters.[18] Like the last episodes, the OVA had "Kakusei Heroism: The Hero Without A Name" as its opening theme and "Dreams" as its closing theme.[19]

# Title Original release date Singapore release date Asia release date USA release date
26 Beneath Cherry Blossoms in Full Bloom...
"Sakura no Hana no Mankai no Shita" (桜の花の満開の下)
{{{OriginalAirDate}}} {{{FirstEngAirDate}}}
Mayu Ōtsuka works at the Fourth Foreign Affairs Department in the Japanese National Police Agency as a liaison officer with the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan. She wrote a story about a masked man that supposedly seemed to be a dream, but she isn't sure. Hei and his team got themselves a new task and are looking for a numeric password attached to a sample. A Contractor took it from the Gate and buried it under a cherry blossom tree. As events unfold, Mayu seems to fall in love with Hei, while Saitō struggles to confess his feelings for Kirihara.

References

General
  • Script error
Specific

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