Yuri!! On Ice Review

Figure skater Yuri Katsuki suffered a huge loss during the Grand Prix, leading him to fall into depression and nearly give up on his career. But when the world champion skater Viktor Nikiforov sees a online video of Yuri’s rendition of his own winning performance, he shows up in Japan to declare himself Yuri’s new skating coach forcing Yuri back into the rink!

Not much here besides some kicking and falls, mostly used for slap stick effect.

Some b-words on rare occasion, with a more steady appearance of sh-ts and such, as usual for TV14 fare.

We actually get a decent amount of heavy handed masculine fanservice in this show. Think Free! here. So lots of suggestive angles for specific characters, implications in dialog now and again, and a few revealing bath scenes. Compared to the usual fanservice at the expense of female characters, this show might be seen as tame. Even so, it’s by no means subtle, so if this kind of thing bugs you, I’d stay away from this show.

Besides some brief mentions of mythology, there’s not a ton to discuss here. We do see a small memorial set up for the dead, namely the MC’s dog, but these things are not explained in detail nor discussed.

Personal impression:
Welcome to my first review for 2017! I must say that this is a somewhat fitting one as it was by far the most hyped show of last season. In fact, the fever over this show was perhaps the highest I’ve seen all through 2016 and I feel it was a fanbase reaction very similar in tone to Free!, that fanservicy swim number a few years back that everyone and their cousin died over.
That said, I do feel as if this show was a bit more focused on the sport, which was nice as I enjoy watching figure skating myself. And there in lies the biggest pull of this show for me: the animation for the skating sequences. Despite a few scenes being rough here and there (the DVD release is supposed to have the “polished” versions), overall the skating is beautifully animated and quite realistic in movement. The camera angles are also very well done and keep the scenes interesting and new depending on the character’s emotions at the time, despite the skate sequences often being the same routine.
This isn’t to imply that the story and characters don’t have their own pull. They do, but not as much as I was hoping when I had started this show. The first few episodes of this series have a bit more introspection for the main character, but as the series closed the competitions overtook this aspect and conversations, in-depth ones at least, between leads became more rare. The last episode in particular felt a bit rushed.
In the end, this series wasn’t at all bad. It was quite good and had some nice moments of both mirth and drama that were visually and emotionally well executed. The music is pretty spot on too (despite the theme being oddly Americanized). There’s good reason behind the hype for this one. My desire for more heart to hearts between leads is simply a personal taste choice. Overall this series did very well for itself and I’d highly recommend it to anyone with even a passing fancy at figure skating for the visuals alone.

Personal rating: Young adult

Episodes: 12
Langauges sub and dub (dub through FUNimation only)
Official rating: TV14
Genre(s): Sports, drama, comedy
Studio: MAPPA
Company: TVAsahi (US – FUNimation)
Official streaming: Crunchyroll


10 thoughts on “Yuri!! On Ice Review

  1. Oh, the amount of spoilers I saw after not being able to immediately watch the updates! Still haven’t watched all of it as I lost the mood because of spoilers. Anyway, I agree that the animation is well done here. After starting this, I started watching some figure skating videos as well (at that time, there was a competition where Yuzuru Hanyu entered. Thanks to this and those videos, I knew about Shoma Uno. Haha!) so it became evident how much detail they put into the animation.

    I think there’s also so much hype mostly because of Victuuri. They’re the first ever canon pair in a sports anime (where lots of slash pairings are supported by the fujoshi community). In that sense, YOI is a breath of fresh air.

    I don’t know why the theme is also ‘Americanized’, but I do love History Maker! The OP sequences are beautiful, too! (Though the difference is only the colors, but still…) The ED sequences are also interesting because they’re not the same. *^*

    1. inrosegalaxy

      Very good point about it being the first sports show to have a cannon gay pair. Have you seen Anime Feminist’s article on gender in performance (“So I can be myself”)? Despite not being a huge fan of this anime myself, I can see how it’s a big deal. It broke down a few walls and I’m happy to see what shows will come out in the future because of the road hits like this pave.

      1. I haven’t read that yet but I will check it out later. True! We have hope that there will be more anime which will break the norm in the future. We’ll have more variety of anime to choose from.

      2. inrosegalaxy

        And I am AAAAALL for more variety. One of the worst plagues in anime today is everything being such a carbon copy of prior shows or tropes. We DESPERATELY need some new material.

      3. Hear hear! We have to have rebellious shows. Though we can consider Satoshi Kon’s shows like that, they still have tendency to lean on surreal and not many people can easily appreciate them.

      4. inrosegalaxy

        Ya know, I really haven’t seen much of his stuff. I should make more of an effort to, looking at his filmography. Which ones would you most recommend?

      5. Oh, I haven’t seen all, but the ones I did and liked are his movies Tokyo Godfathers and Millennium Actress. I started Paranoia Agent, but I had to put it on-hold because of studies; I’ve yet to pick it up again, though.

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