Yuri!!! On Ice Episode 1: [The Grand Prix Final of Tears][First Impressions]

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vlcsnap-2016-10-06-12h33m17s039Aaaaah! It’s there! The show I was the more hyped about! When I first saw the trailer I thought “oh boi, this one looks awesome, better shotgun it“. And I don’t regret my choice! So let’s find out if Yuri!!! On Ice is worth all the hype that surrounds it.

What happens during this episode remains fairly simple and is some really basic expository stuff. Yuuri, our young hero does figure skating but is kind of losing every championship in participates in. Therefore he decides to stop doing competitions, takes a break and goes back to the familial Onsen for the first time in five years. After meeting with his family and relatives again, he goes to an Ice ring and stakes in front on his childhood friend, a girl whom he might have feelings for before. So Yuuri reproduces the choreography of his idol Victor Nikiforov, the really hot champion of everything. Without telling Yuuri, the kids of that girl post the video on youtube and it’s a hit, everyone sees it, even Victor who decides to go to Japan in order to train Yuuri, since he probably sees potential in this kiddo. So from now on, they’ll live together and there’s some high changes, the other Yuri (the angry one) will show up and the three of them will train together.

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Charibo’s first Impressions:

vlcsnap-2016-10-06-12h33m40s095OH MAMA THIS OPENING! It reminds me a bit of the Subete ga F ni Naru The Perfect Insider opening. Just a succession of dance moves but still, there’s something fascinating about it. The use of the instagram feed in the ending is quite inventive too. The songs used in the OP and ED are both really good but the OP one is the best. At least for me.

The animation is stellar, I think we can all agree on this one. I don’t really know how to describe the backgrounds but they look like a mix between traditional art and digital at the same time. AND THE FACES OF THE CHARACTERS! AAAHN! THEY ARE LOVELY! I mean his show is something else, everything in it is beautiful. At least for the moment, we’ll see if the same care and budget will be put in every episodes.

vlcsnap-2016-10-06-12h32m36s744The comedy is on point, the introduction of those chibi characters surprised me a bit. For the moment, all side characters, expect Victor and Yuri are used as comic reliefs but they remain attaching so I’m hoping their role will evolve later on.

Everything in this episode was very dynamic, which is why the figure skating performance at the middle of the episode had such an impact on me. After witnessing more than 12 minutes of characters constantly talking quickly, moving a lot and almost screaming, that figure skating scene was relaxing. I know nothing about Figure Skating in general so I can’t judge the quality of the performance but I do like to watch some performances, especially during the winter Olympics. Anyway, I liked it, that’s what matters. I do hope there’ll be a lot of those performances, but I fear once again, the show will take a more “Slice of Life” approach than a “Sports” one. A bit like Cheer Danshi!! and Free! for example. Now that I think of it, they all contain exclamations marks in their title… Coincidence? I think not.

vlcsnap-2016-10-06-12h40m52s031Yuuri is quite and in interesting character, he has a lot of contradictory feelings and sometimes does some stupid things without any reasons but heh, that’s what I call being normal. Especially the scene in the toilets when he called his family and lied to them in order to reassure them while trying to comfort himself at the same time. Without any success because even if you try, you can’t really fool yourself. I also liked the fact Yuri is a huge fanboy. Copying Victor’s skating moves, buying the same pet as his and naming it Victor, watching all his shows with stars in his eyes and having posters of him everywhere in his room. I can’t wait to see Victor and Yuuri interacting more, I bet there’s going to be a loooot of blushing, especially if Victor continues to do his little wink and smile… Yeah…
Speaking of Victor, sweet mother hell of bananas, he’s hot. It’s like everything about him is perfect, his looks, the way he treats his fans, his Figure skating performances and even his abs and butt… That’s why I’d like to see the guy in the private sphere, see his weaknesses and maybe the deconstruction of the myth.

So overall: Interesting main character, nice supporting cast, Gold Opening and Ending, amazing animation, what could go wrong?

vlcsnap-2016-10-06-12h41m43s158Well, let’s talk about Victor’s butt. Although I do appreciate butts once in a while, I’m a bit concerned about the nature of this show’s content. I’m almost sure there’ll be more “sexy” scenes like that. I don’t deal very well with Ecchi type of shows, I do enjoy fan service a bit but I grow quickly bored of it and I’m even pissed off if it’s used too often. So yeah, I’m a bit worried Yuri!!! on Ice will rely a bit too much on fan service. That’ll be a shame if they did, they have figure skating, no need for fan service when you are a show about such a cool sports!
Furthermore based on what I saw from the preview, Victor looks like the flirty type. And that’s fine by me, however, if the anime chose to go full “Shounen Ai” way, I want the show to assume it and develop a possible romance between the characters. Not just putting random awkward situations as a bait to attract a certain audience. In other words, if it’s gay, make it gayer.

Finally,+1 for having nipples Victor, that is a rare quality that not every bishounen has nowadays, props to you Vicky.

6 thoughts on “Yuri!!! On Ice Episode 1: [The Grand Prix Final of Tears][First Impressions]”

  1. There’s a lot of effort put into this anime – for choreography, the director’s working together with ex-Olympic ice skater turned coach Miyamoto Kenji (also trainer to current Olympic ice skating star Hanyu Yuzuru – he got gold in Sochi.) There’s also a fashion company handling the designs of the skating costumes.
    Kenji: https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/aa/eb/08/aaeb085d573bdf016d23f46619e88288.jpg
    Hanyu: http://www.goldenskate.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/04/Hanyu_Yuzuru.jpg

  2. Yuri’s head writer has also claimed the fanservice in this show will put the fanservice of bishoujo animes to shame, and VA Suwabe Junichi joked about how the show was so sexy, it “barely passed Japanese censorship laws”.

  3. Yes! I did read something about YOI being full of fan service hence my doubts …But now that you’ve confirmed it, I’m more afraid than excited now :/
    I don’t really know japan’s censorship laws regarding anime ( expect the “no genitals” thing) so I guess I should try and look for those!

  4. I like the fact that they subtly show us that Yuri (the Japanese one) might be a bi, since I saw he has the same blush for both Yuko and Viktor. We don’t get to see that much in anime; usually it’s one or the other. I appreciate that.

  5. I’m a guy, and… yeah, the fanservice at the end is… quite a surprise tbh. But I won’t drop it just because of that. The story, character, and (of course) the animation is superb. Got a feeling this might be my personal favorite for this season, so I’d be an open-minded person to be able to properly appreciate such a rare treat like this.

  6. And I don’t know about you, but I saw some death flag vibe coming from Viktor. His retirement rumor, the fact that he just waltzed to an unpopular area in Japan because of an online video, his sephia shots with Yuri and his dog in the ED… Maybe I just think too much. Maybe he has another reason for that. What do you think?

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