A few months ago, I finally gave in and joined the bandwagon by watching the entire Kuroko no Basuke anime series. Kuroko no Basuke (黒子のバスケ / Kuroko’s Basketball) is a manga series by Fujimaki Tadatoshi (藤巻 忠俊). I watched the first season back in 2012 when it first aired. I found it entertaining that time, but didn’t really felt any connection with the characters. That’s why I didn’t watch the next seasons until a few months ago.
Fast-forward to 2015. I felt that the universe was not-so-subtly urging me to watch KnB. On my Twitter timeline, fan art and screenshots of the series frequently appeared. On my blog reader, KnB posts abounded. And so I finally gave in like a normal human being bombarded by constant temptation.
I watched it from episode 1 of the first season. My impression of season 1 hadn’t changed since I first watched it back in 2012. But when I began season 2, I was hooked. It didn’t make me want to play basketball unlike Slam Dunk and Dear Boys. Heck, I would be terrified of playing in the world of KnB with all of those freak geniuses, especially those monsters from the Generation of Miracles (キセキの世代 / Kiseki no Sedai).
What I Liked
1. The Freakish Talents
It’s not only the members of the Generation of Miracles that have freakish talents. Almost every team has at least a genius. Watching these geniuses clash against each other is entertaining and exciting, like entering another dimension.
2. The Comedy
It’s not as funny compared to my other favourite series, but I like that it successfully made me laugh. I like series that make me laugh, but not all series that make me laugh are good. Fortunately, KnB managed to be both funny and good at the same time.
3. The Hot Guys
You already know that I love ogling bishounen. Need I say more? Yum~ (≚ᄌ≚)ℒℴѵℯ
4. The Even Hotter Voices
Ono Kenshou, Ono Yuuki, Eguchi Takuya. And of course, Ono Daisuke, Suwabe Jun’ichi, Nakai Kazuya, and Kamiya Hiroshi. Oh my gosh. From just this cast alone, I won’t give a damn if the story is total crap. I’ll still watch just to hear these guys’ voices. Ah, be still my heart.
5. The Rivalry
Good sports series feature great rivalry between the characters. Victory is just an empty goal if there is no meaningful interaction between the players. Although the Generation of Miracles started off as arrogant bastards, their gradually growing respect for Kuroko, Kagami and the other Seirin members fuel admirable rivalries between them.
What I Didn’t Like
1. The Freakish Talents
Like I said above, watching these geniuses clash against each other is entertaining and exciting. However, there are a lot of times that I felt it’s too much. It seems like everyone has some sort of super talent. Take the “Zone”, for example. I know that this happens in real life, but the way they portrayed it in KnB was just too over-the-top that I couldn’t help but roll my eyes. They look like they turned into cyborgs or something with those laser lights coming out of their eyes. Still awesome, though.
2. Not Enough Training Shown
The difficult and (mostly) unconventional training in sports anime is one of my most favourite aspects of the genre. I like watching the struggles of the characters as they do their best to improve their skills, and of course watching them reap the fruits of their labour. KnB, especially in Season 1, don’t show enough training. It’s just one match after another.
3. Kuroko Didn’t Feel Like the Main Character
If not for the title, KUROKO no Basuke, I wouldn’t even think that he’s the main protagonist. Kagami Taiga overshadows him, but I guess that’s the main point because Kuroko is an “invisible man”. The influence of the 5 members of the Generation of Miracles are so overpowering that it feels that they play greater roles than both Kuroko and Kagami.
4. The Ending
I’m glad that Seirin won. Hooray, hooray, yay, yay! But ending the series with that victory left me unsatisfied. I want more! I want to know what happens to them throughout their entire high school basketball careers, or even after that; whether they stopped playing basketball or went on to become professional players. But I guess that it wouldn’t be as interesting anymore if the series drag on too long. Okay. So I’m a little satisfied, after all.
Rating: 😀 😀 😀 🙂 (3 & 1/2 out of 5 grins)
l really like Kuroko no Basuke. It definitely doesn’t make the cut as my #1 favourite sports anime, but it entertained me and left me wanting for more. The characters are hot and their voices are hotter (always important to me). The matches are exciting, although often bordering towards the outrageous, but who cares? This is anime and anything can happen.
Kuroko no Basuke Official Anime Website (Japanese)
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