Sports anime? No thank you!
This upcoming spring anime season is an interesting one for a bunch of reasons, the most notable of which being the rather unusual shortage of moe titles. However one thing that many people have commented on is the rather large number of sports anime this season. Giant Killing, another season of Major, Big Windup 2 (or Ookybooky Fookybooky or whatever it’s weeaboo name is) and some second season to a boxing anime that nobody has ever heard of. And yet again we get the standard reaction of disinterest because it’s a sports anime, despite the fact that barely anyone has actually watched any sports anime.
The alternative reaction usually goes something along the lines of “I don’t like sports anime, except Cross Game” when Cross Game is the only sports anime they’ve watched. There’s an automatic reaction amongst anime fans that they won’t like it because it involves sports, an assumption often based off little to no experience with the genre. What’s more bizarre is the people who fall into the ‘hate sports anime bar X’ category have often only watched that single title out of the genre. And yet with a 100% record success with the sports genre they still blacklist every sports anime. Most people tend to place this upon the fact that the majority of anime fans are nerds who do not like sports, which is a pretty fair assumption to make. However even people who do like both sports and anime seem to be oddly put off by the sports genre, again having their dislike for sports anime founded on next to nothing.
The point of this post is to ask people could you please drop your ridiculous prejudice towards sports anime and actually watch some. Hajime no Ippo has been consistently ranked as one of the greatest anime of all time and yet surprisingly few people have even considered watching it. In all my time trawling across season previews, I think I’ve only seen one person who even mentioned that they even tried to watch Major, despite seemingly having a new season every year. I personally will sing praises of One Outs until the cows come home (or alternatively, in some more people actually watched that show). I’ll admit a personal amount of reluctance to start the likes of Hajime no Ippo and Eyeshield 21, another extremely highly rated sports anime, due to the length of them, but I will not dismiss them because they are sports anime.
I’m not saying sports anime are fantastic or anything. For every action-packed romp like One Outs, there’s a borefest like Taisho Baseball Girls (although I think I might be the minority on that one). For every piece of intelligently written work like Cross Game, there’s a steaming pile of retardedness like Basquash. But is that any different from any other genre of anime? For every Gurren Lagann there’s a Linebarrels of Iron. For every Kannagi there’s an Akikan. For that reason the only thing you can do is actually watch the stuff that’s well rated. Take your comrades word for once and actually watch the show. Now let me do a full circle here and return to next season. In my usual trawling of the internet to find review of the manga that the upcoming anime are based off, I have yet to find a single person who does not praise Giant Killing. Now I have also heard that there was apparently some sort of disagreement between Studio Deen and the mangaka so bigging up this anime might come back to haunt me, but for gods sake, do not dismiss it because it is a sports anime. Because ask yourself, how many have you actually watched to base this dislike off?