Created by Clive Bradley and Kevin Kolde ‘Castlevania: Nocturne’ is a dark fantasy animated show that revolves around a vampire uprising. Carrying the Belmont vampire-hunting legacy, a young Richter Belmont faces a terrifying enemy in Erzsebet Báthory, dubbed The Vampire Messiah by her cult of fanged followers. As her influence over Europe spreads amidst a historical revolution, Richter must find a way to put an end to her reign with the help of his friends, witch Maria Renard, the descendant of a God, Annette, and the honey-voiced Edouard.
Even though the ‘Castlevania’ franchise resides in a fantastical world steeped in magic, necromancy, and vampires, its geographical setting remains within the confines of the real world. With ‘Castlevania: Nocturne,’ the narrative references numerous historical events and locations as the plot progresses, which is bound to invite the viewers’ curiosity about the when and where of this show. Here is everything you need to know about it!
When Does Castlevania: Nocturne Take Place?
Set 300 years after the parent show ‘Castlevania,’ this show takes place in the 18th Century, specifically the year 1792. In 1783, Trevor and Sypha’s descendant, Richter Belmont, watches his mother die at the hands of an ancient and powerful vampire. Nine years after the traumatic event, Richter lives with his distant sorcerer aunt, Tera Renard, and her young daughter, Maria, during which most of the season’s events occur. The show’s chronological distance from the original ‘Castlevania’ series sets the narrative apart, granting the story its spin-off title.
Alternatively, the narrative finds plenty of influence from its setting in the 18th Century, when the French Revolution was in motion. Themes of freedom and camaraderie run rampant within various storylines, affecting almost every character’s development and arc. As such, the backdrop of a nation demanding social equality makes up the perfect stage for Richter and his friend’s stories to unfold.
Likewise, the 1791 Haitian revolution in Saint-Domingue lends itself to a riveting backstory for Annette and Edouard’s characters. The incorporation of Annette’s story, in particular, following her self-liberation from slavery, infuses her character and the show with a crucial narrative that remains thematically resonant.
Nevertheless, the show’s fictionality shines through in terms of the characters’ vernacular and wardrobe choices. Historical accuracy is obviously not something a fantasy show will seek out. As such, for the most part, ‘Castlevania: Nocturne’ only utilizes its 18th-century setting to highlight its core themes of liberation and legacy.
Where Does Castlevania: Nocturne Take Place?
Although different plotlines take the narrative to various locations at times, particularly historical America and Haiti, the story’s bulk takes place in Western France. Richter resides in Machecoul, where Maria organizes a revolution for the citizens, inspired by the events transpiring in Paris. While the show’s broader setting in France informs the revolutionary ideas and themes within the narrative, Richter and the others’ presence in Machecoul plays a vital role in the central plotline.
During the 1790s, a counter-revolution was brewing in the Vendée region of France colored by Royalist sentiments. The historical revolt, War in the Vendée, was brought on by a number of reasons, including the opposition to the Revolution’s anti-clericalism. As a result, Machecoul saw a massacre on 11 March 1793. While the massacre remains nuanced with several socio-political reasons behind it, the revolt against The Civil Constitution of The Clergy played its part in it.
In ‘Castlevania: Nocturne,’ The Church, headed by Abbot Emmanuel, occupies a significant antagonistic role and influences the protagonists’ stories in strides. While the story’s fictional and fantastical nature leads to similar non-historic events, the real-life history of its regions provides some context. As such, the show’s geographical setting in Machecoul lends itself to the rising anti-French Revolution sentiments surrounding Richter and his friends.
Through the same, the narrative depicts the struggles that accompany significant power shifts and builds commendable odds against the heroes. In that regard, the show’s fictional and fantastical setting in Machecoul, Western France, remains instrumental to the narrative.
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