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Reads 34
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Although the manga is better, I enjoyed the heck out of this football anime, warts and all

/anime/38122/eyeshield-21
Review of Eyeshield 21
by Rivka
Posted on May 1st, 2019
Positive 8
Overall Rating
 
+

IN BRIEF: Kobayakawa Sena has never been good at anything, except drawing the attention of bullies who make him run their errands. Now that he's starting high school, he wants a fresh beginning - but at first it seems like same old, same old. It's when Hiruma, the quarterback of the Deimon Devil Bats, sees Sena run past him on an errand that the plot goes into motion: Sena is about to become the star of the team! 

OPINION: I love this manga so much - even though it should have ended about 3 volumes earlier than it did. Most sports manga/anime follow a fairly traditional formula. Eyeshield 21 exemplifies the best of those tropes. The cast of characters is great: you come to love even the annoying teammates, and care about their goal of winning the Christmas Bowl. Even though there aren't many female characters, the ones that do appear are just as well rounded and interesting as the guys. I particularly loved how Sena's childhood friend Mamori had a genuine - if argumentative - understanding with Hiruma.

Sure, the anime suffers from bloat (it can't possibly take that long to make a pass) and less than stellar animation. It also doesn't reach the end of the story - or even the Christmas Bowl, which is the ending for the majority of the plot. On the other hand, the voice actors are terrific, especially Hiruma's. It's worth it to read the manga, and then watch some of the iconic scenes.

Rivka
Clarifying my rating system:

1-6: If I started watching, I stopped once it clearly fell below 7. I would never watch or recommend. [Further clarification: 1-3 is pure excrement, and I would rather be getting un-anesthetized surgery for the entire running time. 4-6 is the kind of thing where I would sincerely rather be doing chores, but could survive sitting through it if a friend begged me to.]

7: I watched at least part of it, and may have stopped due to not liking the plot twists, character derailment, etc. I may have watched the whole show, but recognize deal-breaker tropes in it, and I'm unlikely to rewatch; thus, huge caveats to any recommendation.

8: Not my thing, but usually I at least respect it. Generally, I didn't like it enough to rewatch it, but also didn't see huge problems in the plot, characterizations, etc. and thought it was worth finishing. I'd consider it mostly harmless to view, with the occasional caveat; it's possible that over time I would upgrade it to a 9 if I liked it more on reflection. I would recommend it to the right audience.

9: I enjoyed very much. It may have had one or two issues, but not enough to diminish enjoyment. It's possible that over time I would downgrade it to an 8 (changing tastes) or upgrade to a 10 (realize it's never left my mind). I'm likely to rewatch, and might decide to buy the DVDs. I'd recommend it to most audiences.

10: Virtually flawless. I'd definitely rewatch, and am likely to buy DVDs. I would shill to anyone.
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