After a week's break for a recap episode while SHAFT went off to find some more red paint to cover the screen in when they run out of time for actual animation, Dance in the Vampire Bund returns to deliver its second half after the big finale at the end of episode seven.
Given everything that happened in that particular instalment, a large portion of episode eight is dedicated to the awkward state of play that exists between Yuki, Akira and Mina, as Yuki struggles to come to terms with Akira's true form as well as his dedication to his "princess". Yet, despite all of that, it appears thta she can't help but find herself fascinated by Mina Tepes, and here we see a true (if slightly unsteady, perhaps) friendship begin to build between the pair of them as they both begin to understand the strengths and weaknesses of the other when it comes to Akira.
Away from the romance and friendship angle of this main trio, the rest of the episode concerns itself with student council present Nanami, who still appears to be running amok in the world of humans, to the point where she even attacks a younger boy who she clearly shared a close relationship before her descent into a vampire. For all of her deviant behaviour, it's clear that Nanami isn't acting entirely under her own influence, and further investigation reveals a new threat to both vampires and humans serving as Nanami's master.
Now that Dance in the Vampire Bund seems to have moved away from some of the rather sluggish politics and ramshackle episode structures we've seen previously, it's certainly looking all the healthier for it. Even some of the more "slice of life"-esque elements that seemed pointless in the past work far better and feel much sharper here, while the action quotient does a pretty passable job as we enter the latter stages of the episode even if it does remind us that outright action isn't particularly SHAFT's "thing" in animation terms. Although this combination doesn't make for anything ground-breaking, it does set the scene for what could be a genuinely interesting story arc, which can only mean that things are on the up for Dance in the Vampire Bund after its tepid beginnings. Let's just hope it can carry that momentum through over the coming weeks.