Wednesday, July 6, 2016

5 Reasons to Watch the 3 Seasons of Kuroko No Basket | Anime Rec

Kuroko no Basket / 2nd Season / 3rd Season
MAL Top Anime List*: #106 / #65 / #49
# Episodes watched: 75 / 75 (25 per season
Aired: Apr 8 to Sep 22, 2012 / Oct 6 to Mar 30, 2014 / Jan 11 to Jun 30, 2015
Teikou Junior High School's basketball team is crowned champion three years in a row thanks to five outstanding players who, with their breathtaking and unique skills, leave opponents in despair and fans in admiration. However, after graduating, these teammates, known as "The Generation of Miracles," go their separate ways and now consider each other as rivals.
At Seirin High School, two newly recruited freshmen prove that they are not ordinary basketball players: Taiga Kagami, a promising player returning from the US, and Tetsuya Kuroko, a seemingly ordinary student whose lack of presence allows him to move around unnoticed. Although Kuroko is neither athletic nor able to score any points, he was a member of Teikou's basketball team, where he played as the "Phantom Sixth Man," who easily passed the ball and assisted his teammates.
Kuroko no Basket follows the journey of Seirin's players as they attempt to become the best Japanese high school team by winning the Interhigh Championship. To reach their goal, they have to cross pathways with several powerful teams, some of which have one of the five players with godlike abilities, whom Kuroko and Taiga make a pact to defeat.
In all honesty, it's been a long while since I've truly been enthusiastic about anime. When I started watching anime around ten or eleven years ago, I could binge watch for months on no end, finishing one anime after the other like it was a contest and I was out to win all the prizes.

But when I got back into reading and writing, that kind of waned. I started keeping mostly with manga, with the very occasional anime watch. In fact, for the last few months since I vowed to try some of the more popular anime out there, I have started and stopped a large number of them, simply because they didn't grab my attention long enough.

And then came Kuroko no Basket. I have no idea what possessed me to give this sports anime a shot, but thank god to that demon/angel because this is the first anime in ages that consumed me to the point of nonstop watching. I finished 75 episodes in a mere week, work and everything. I basically did nothing but watch on my spare time. And now, I'm going to be the demon/angel on your shoulder tempting you to watch this series, using a ton of gifs and quiet a few words!

#1: You Don't Need to Love Sports 

I know, I know. The first thing that comes to your mind when you hear the words "basketball anime" is... meh, I'm not really into basketball. Or any type of sports. I thought the same thing. Well, you really don't need to be to love this anime.
In fact, this anime is exactly the reason why normal sports don't interest me. Normal sports don't have special moves that make the ball disappear, or change your eye color, or make fucking lazer beams shot from your eyes, do they?
And okay, all these are just visual aids to make everything cooler. None of the characters really have super powers. But... boy, how cool it is.
And if you already love sports without those super powers, imagine how much you'll love it with them! (just, bear in mind, it's not a 100% realistic representation of the sport. As demonstrated by the superpower-esque situation).

#2: Great Characters and Character Interactions 

You know, the key element to any story is its characters. A boring, weak, or pathetic character can make you indifferent or hateful toward the story. But strong, interesting, versatile characters can bring even the most unoriginal story to life. Combine that with a great plot, and you have a recipe for success.
Well, the characters in Kuroko no Basket are the absolute best. I love them so much it's ridiculous. First we have our trusty shadow Kuroko Tetsuya, the namesake of this series. With such an adorable, admirable and strong main character, how can you not love this show? 
His partner and his "light" is Kagami Taiga. Hot headed, serious, never-backs-away-from a fight. He is loud where Tetsuya is calm and quiet, making them the complete opposites, but you know what they say - opposites attract. It might sound a little gay. A lot of the fangirls (me included) kind of hope it is gay because these two compliment each other so well... but, canonically speaking, there is nothing less than straight about these two. Either way they're great characters.
Individually, all the characters in this show are very strong (and heck amusing), but it's the interaction between them that really seals the deal as a great show. It's funny, it's charming, it's human, and each character develops and builds alone and as a group as the story moves along, creating the coolest basketball team to ever basket (and they have some wicked cool competitors in-series). 
These characters will make you root for them like crazy. You will jump out of your chair in happiness when they win. You will bite your nails as they struggle game after game, never to give up. You will cry with them when they lose. 

Because these amazing characters will make you unable not to. 

#3: FRIENDSHIP IS EVERYTHING... and yet not too cheesy 

Kuroko no Basket is not the first (and it's not going to be the last) anime to focus on friendship. However, Kuroko takes it a step farther while simultaneously taking it a step down.
A step farther? the whole idea behind Kuroko no Basket is team play. "Kuroko no Basket" literally means "the basketball which Kuroko plays". Kuroko is a team player. His biggest role is to support the team and give them the best position to score and win the game. He is a player that cannot play by himself... nor does he want to. 
He believes that a game played "by yourself" relying solely on your own abilities is not a fun game, because even if you win you have no one to celebrate it with - so what's the point? And he's out to prove it to everyone else... which means the opposing teams also get incredible character development! 
Indeed, the whole point of Kuroko no Basket is "Team Play". It's not enough just to be friends to have a good team play (you need to trust each other, to have individual strong abilities but also to understand your role in the group in order to create good 'team play') but friendship is still a key element. 
Taking it a step down? You're not going to find cheesy deceleration of friendships and eye-roll worthy moments around this theme. Or at least, not in the normal way. Everyone fall into an effortless friendship, and every such gesture is timed, fitting and tasteful. Never once did I snicker and thought it over the top, which I think often in anime, sports or otherwise. Kuroko no Basket found the perfect balance between making friendship a focal point but keeping it subtle.  

#4: Exciting, Nail Biting Action! 

These are just basketball games, you say? THESE ARE NOT JUST BASKETBALL GAMES. The amount of tension and anxiety these games gave me is on per with saving the world action. Dear god almighty, my nails! My poor nails! Gone, just like that. Because of a bunch of basketball games.
If that doesn't say you need to watch this series, if only just so you could see how this is possible, I don't know what will. 


This is just a stupid anime about basketball, Nitzan, you say.
There is no way it can kick you in the guts with feels, you say.
Stop lying, you say.


I was drowning in feels.
btw yes, this well known gif is is my babe Kuroko 
 Basketball punched by feels.
It was a feels field day! Ohhh, it starts light enough. You get a hint and a warning of it in the first season, but it fools you into thinking this is just going to be a fun romp in the grass. Season two has some heartbreaking scenes, but it's not full out yet. But THEN... then comes seasons three and WHAM, you're under attack. And you're going to cry, goddammit, and you're going to love it!
Don't mind me. I'll just just sitting here, crying.
*The number detailed here is accurate to the time this post was written on. 

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