Yuri!!! On Ice | 12 Episodes | DUB | VRV
Final Verdict: I want more!
Yuri on Ice literally gave me all the feels I could possibly want. It had action. It had romance. It had a person who is over the age of 17 trying to find his place in the skating world and where he fits in. It had a lot of great characters. It had characters growing. It had awesome music and skating routines. It had so much goodness!
First, there was the overall story. Yuri Katsuki is a professional ice skater who is in a bad slump after a pretty much epic fail in the Grand Prix Finals. He is on the verge of retiring when he returns home after graduating from college. Unsure of what to do, he goes to the skating rink to show an old friend a routine they’d watched together as kids of Viktor — the most popular men’s single ice skater. Her daughters record him doing the routine, the video goes viral, and soon Yuri has the Viktor he’s idolized since childhood as his skating coach. This shakes up the skating world and turns Yuri’s career and life on its head.
The show follows Yuri as he works hard to make a comeback in his ice skating career. We see him train to get back in shape, struggle to find his confidence, and improve by leaps and bounds — literally with his leaps and bounds on the ice. He has 3 routines that change ever so slightly from competition to competition. I thought at first that this would get boring, but I was absolutely wrong. By seeing the same routine, we see him improve so much! The mistakes he makes during the first performance change him, and his expressions and confidence in the routines change as well. The animation shows this, but with the added addition of hearing his inner thoughts while he skates and the crowd’s thoughts as they watch him, we really get a full picture. I also love that I could connect the routine to his outfits and I got excited to see what was going to happen. Was he going to nail all his jumps or was he going to flub it up?
My heart was honestly racing as I watched him on the ice, and I’ve never watched an anime that had me so into the story that way.
Aside from the action on the ice, we have the relationship between Yuri and Viktor off the ice. I really loved the love story between them as well. It wasn’t overnight or sudden really, it was always there and grew bigger throughout the episodes. It wasn’t something that overtook the anime though. This is a sports anime hands down, but you’d be hard-pressed to watch this and ignore their relationship. I’d go so far as to say it’s impossible. So if you’re not into boys kissing boys… this might not be the anime for you. There is only one actual kiss that we see, but there are a lot of other signals that hint that it wasn’t the only one.
There were also the other skaters. Normally in an anime like this, we wouldn’t know much about anyone else except for Yuri and Viktor, but we know the story of everyone in the anime. From his skating buddies, to his rival, to the friends he grew up with, to his ballet teacher. Everyone has a story, and knowing it, even if it’s just a little bit, helps to build the world that Yuri lives in and helps to feel connected to him. I think that connection is probably why my heart was racing for him on the ice.
If you’ve read any of my previous posts, you also know that I really appreciate an anime with older characters because there’s more to life than high school. This anime shows that really well. School doesn’t even factor in here and I think it’s accurate in a lot of ways. As a young person, Yuri felt absolutely deflated and at rock bottom after his epic defeat in the Grand Prix Finals. He questioned whether he was good enough to skate anymore at all or if he should just retire. He questioned how long he’d be able to skate since it’s so hard on his body, and at 23, he didn’t have much time left to skate competitively. He refers to himself as “a dime a dozen” skater certified by the association. He’s a real guy who acknowledges where he stands in the world and questions if he can realistically compete with the other great skaters he has to face. I like this because with him being older, he’s more mature in a lot of ways. So, we don’t get so many of the pointless emotional breakouts we sometimes get with younger characters.
This anime was so good. It had a great story and was filled with interesting characters, just the right amount of romance, and a good amount of healthy competition. The skating routines are fun to watch and it’s easy to get caught up in this one. 100% worth the watch.
The Otaku Couple