Yuri on Ice (2016 anime) review

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Anime: Yuri On Ice
Studio: MAPPA
Year: 2016

Intro

I opted to watch this because I had heard a lot of hype about this anime but had to put this series on hold due to having to catch up on other series. It wasn’t until the Winter Olympics were coming up in 2018 that I decided to get into the festivities and start the series since I had a gut feeling that this series would make a huge impact for the figure skating portion of the Winter Games.

Plot

Yuri Katsuki had just suffered a crushing defeat in the Grand Prix Finals for figure skating and was going to go back to his hometown to contemplate his future. He goes back to his home ice rink and decides to do his idol’s routine and successfully replicates it, but others decided to record it and then upload it onto the internet for the world to see. This draws out the originator of the routine, Viktor Nikiforov, to Yuri’s home from Russia. He decides to be Yuri’s coach, sit out of the upcoming season, and to resurrect his falling career.

This attention caught the ire of a skating prodigy of Yuri Plisetsky who also travels to Japan to get the coaching of Viktor. The two Yuris not only have to compete for the right to claim Viktor as the sole head coach but also for the right to be the sole Yuri.

During this time, the season starts cooking up and each of them have to qualify to make it to the world finals which was each of their goals. Not only did the two Yuris have each other as rivals, but the field of competition was stacked too even at the regional level.

Good

One of the great things about this was that it was well received by the figure skating community like Johnny Weir and Adam Rippon. The routines were actually designed by figure skaters to get as much authenticity as possible. Even the sounds of the skates gliding through the ice was recorded.

It was definitely good that it highlights the relationship of Viktor with Yuri Katsuki. A lot of people have homophobia, and in a way, this series exposes it. This series doesn’t care if those that fear the LGBT community as Yuri On Ice became one of the most successful anime series ever. Whether or not it promoted change, it definitely put a spotlight on the LGBT community. It definitely put some salt on the wounds of conservatives. It’s also rare for an anime with yaoi themes to be among some of the best anime series out there.

Bad

There are supposedly gay tones which I have no problem with. I really felt that it was a bit excessive and a bit forced. Sometimes there would be no real build up, and they would just have it out of nowhere just to have it.

A lot of it felt repetitive especially when the same routines would be used over and over again with the music. At times, it was as if I were watching the same episode a few times with no real changes to the routines even though the song stayed the same.

Overview

Although there are gay themes, I didn’t care too much about it as we are in a day and age where we shouldn’t be shocked by it but should be more accepting of it. It’s perfectly fine to have fan service for the gay community and for the ladies as straight males have had sexy female characters and numerous fan service. Even though I didn’t really fit the intended audience, I still enjoyed it as a sports fan and an avid consumer of anime.

I really enjoyed the anime itself since I saw a lot of myself in Yuri Katsuki since I felt that he may have suffered from anxiety which is I can relate to. It really did help that the Olympics really put the spotlight on Yuri On Ice when routines in competition were based around this series.

Overall rating: 4/5
Reviewed by: Timtastic

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