Now, this is a sports anime and I was in the middle of two other sports anime and I was really REALLY thinking of passing this one by, but the title arrested me (but I avoided a frisk-and-search), and that is “Yuri!!! On Ice” (and, yes, we need all those exclamation points as well. What is it now with exclamation points?) Now, I got pulled in, as I know what yuri means, but I had a hard time thinking is was a show about yuri types on ice. Well, they are a type of yuri type and….crap, send out the Zamboni and I’ll explain. (more…)
Wow, never have a seen a show with such *ahem* naked fan service and there are a ton of those shows out there (like “Eiken” and “Ikki Tousen” and “Sekerei”), but this one is unabashed about it, as it is all part and parcel as to what goes down. Welcome to “Keijo!!!!!!!!” (also known as “Competitive Girl” or “Hip Whip Girl”) And, yes, we do need all EIGHT of those exclamation points!!!!!!!!
If this came out in the 1970s, we would have called this ‘trash sports’, much like “Battle of the Network Stars”. It is a caliber of sport, but not what you would consider a real sport. And what is keijo????????
In the middle of a huge pool, and it had best be a squarish pool, so Olympic-sized pools may be too small, there is a float. This is referred to as a ‘land’. Depending on the size of this land, two or four or six ladies (and YES, it HAS to BE a LADY!!!!!!!!) stand on this floating land. Their goal: make the other competitors fall into the water or collapse to the land. And how is this done????????
Well….that is to say….I mean….h-h-how can I put this????????
The ladies must use either their breasts or butt to shove, force, propel or otherwise launch into the water their opponents or force them to the ground. Needless to say, this sport is very popular with the guys. The series revolves around four tyros to the Keijo League and all their struggles to become good enough to go pro and what is required of them to be able to attain that dream. And who are our fair and fulsome maidens to make this endeavor???????? From left to right:
Kazane Aoba, her right hand can copy any opponents attack, but she has to feel their butt
Sayaka Miyata, former judo champion and fast on her feet
Nozomi Kaminashi, former gymnast, her signature move is the Vacuum Butt Cannon
Non Toyoguchi, a country girl with a butt so soft, it absorbs attacks
They all feel they have the right stuff to make it, but are challenged at every turn and curve. They learn a butt-ton of butt exercises and the strategy to use every advantage for their benefit. And if they can move up to Elite Status, they get better food, better training and better support. Yeah, I need to put myself out there.
They are put through their paces, getting expert teachings from past masters and daily challenges to fortify both body and spirit. The high point of the show is the annual West vs East competition.
You see, there are two main schools to learn keijo and the best from both meet for a three-round competition to see which school is better. Our ladies are from the West, and the leading champs (they have won this competition for a solid decade) are from the East. Whereas our ladies are demure and courteous and sociable, those other ladies are cutting and sarcastic and rude. They MUST be put in their place, with a conclusion that was totally readable.
That was a bit of a drag, until I realized that we have to stretch out the episodes so we can see the ladies in their combat garb (bathing suits that even Venus would have a hard time wanting to vend) as they breast and butt their way to Ultimate Victory.
Honestly, this is a thin show. The main idea is about friendship, trust and dedication, but we have wrapped it around very tight or revealing swimsuits so it doesn’t mean much, unless you can use your massive orbs to propel another massive-orbed lady off the land. I am truly surprised I never heard the dig “Hey, lady, how’s the drink?”
I also felt there should have been more resistance from parents. We had one plot point for this, but would you, as a father, want your young daughter using her bedonkadonk to smack some other lady silly? Tough call, as you have to balance things as cautiously as you do when you stand upon the land. (PS, “Bop Girl” is an ‘80s song by Pat Wilson. Check it out; it’s a catchy tune).
On a scale of 1 to 10:
Artwork 8 (Cute girls, strange swim suits)
Plot 7 (Rather typical approach to an odd idea)
Pacing 7 (Fast and furious)
Effectiveness 7 (Well, it is an unusual sport)
Conclusion 5 (It reaches a ‘coupler point’, but hasn’t ended)
Fan Service 5 (A similar show would be “Maburaho”)
Overall 7 (Couldn’t escape self-set traps)
And remember, it’s first run until you’ve seen it. You fail to understand the nature of my butt!
OK, don’t let the genre categories throw you on this one, although I question if ‘funny prison rape’ qualifies as one and no, there is no prison rape, funny or otherwise, in this series. “Nambaka” (“The Numbers”) relates the tale of our four favorite felons of Cell 13, Block 13. Introductions are in order, from left to right:
Rock, a man who likes to get into fights
Uno, a man who likes to gamble and win
Nico, a man who likes anime
Jyugo, a man who broke out of numerous prisons (more…)
This was a show that was full of promise, but ended up devolving into the usual fight for supremacy genre that seem to bedevil this caliber of show. “Bungo Stray Dogs 2” (“Bungō Sutorei Doggusu” or ”Literary Stray Dogs”) started off the second season with an interesting take. The first season had us dealing with Atsushi Nakajima (dead center), who has the ability to change into a were tiger. He was taken on board by the Armed Detective Agency, a group dedicated to fighting the Port Mafia, a band of outlaws who also have an arsenal of people with special abilities. (more…)
I have to assume that anything related to dealing with the spirit or yokai realm is a huge amount of hassle. I guess they are rather unpredictable and since many of them are scary/ugly/hideous (to our scale of thinking) most folks shy away from it or have zero idea as to what is really happening (like being in Washington D.C.). The story we have here, “The Morose Mononokean” (“Fukigen na Mononokean”) elaborates on this theory. (more…)
Sniff, sniff. That smell. Can’t you smell that smell? The smell is all around you. Yes, it smells like….and E/I show! Quick, lock the doors, as no one gets out of here.
One of the reasons I am not a big fan of Educational/Informational shows is that they tend to suck the life out of their efforts, so not only isn’t it all that educational and informational, it’s not even all that entertaining. “Time Travel Girl” or, if we go by the full and complete title, “Time Travel Girl: Mari, Waka, and the Eight Scientists” (“Taimu Toraberu Shōjo: Mari Waka to Hachi-nin no Kagakusha-tachi”) wants to be something more, but ends up falling short, by buying into tropes and traps of its own doing. But, on to the plot: (more…)
I have remarked that when you see an uptick in OVAs or short runs of a series that completed its first season, it is a prelude to the release of the next season, but they want to let you know it’s coming with a bit more than a notice on the internet going “The second season is coming! Sale starts on Friday!” It’s just there was a two-run OVA about a year or so ago and now “Nanatsu no Taizai: Seisen no Shirushi” (“The Seven Deadly Sins: Signs of the Holy War”) came out with what they refer to as a TV Special that acts as a prelude to the new season. (more…)
The past is the future is the present. That’s not an ‘alternate fact’; the rather cryptic line is the best way to describe “Kuromukuro” (“Black Relic”), this iteration mecha show. Yes, as a lot of folks know, mecha is my most detested anime genre, beating out sports and vampires. I once mentioned that if there was an anime about sports-playing vampire Gundams, voiced by Chris Ayres, then it’s everything I hate all in one spot. But this one tried to do something more with the genre, and for that it deserves a bit more credit. (more…)
There are two kinds of super heroes: those who are born to it and those who are made. Superman and Wonder Woman are examples of those who were born to it; The Flash and Spider Man are those who were made, by some bizarre accident or event. This show, “Taboo Tattoo”, is about ‘ordinary’ people who possess super powers, granted by a special mark that they receive. (more…)
It’s time to notice new trends! What is the new trend that I am seeing? “Episode #0”!
You may call them ‘one-shot’ or ‘test balloons’ or ‘toss-offs’. They are NOT OVAs, as there has to be a series tied to it before it can be an OVA. Yeah, yeah, sure, sure. We can argue that an OVA has honestly nothing to do with any given series, so, in an open sense, it is an OVA. But I have seen them tied to a series, so I consider them part and parcel of the whole series effort and not just some one or two episode escapade to see what can be done with a story. (more…)