There has been an influx of sports anime lately. This past fall and winter season saw some really great ones, yet why are they becoming so popular? Who wants to see some anime characters playing sports that are not actually real competitions? What is it about sports anime that have us wild? Let us explore the love for sports anime!
First of all, what really makes sports anime as great as they are all the mass amounts of characters. From the past season’s Hinomaruzumo (Hinomaru Sumo) to Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteru to 2016’s Days to 2017’s Ballroom e Youkoso, sports anime are made up of a great cast of characters that clash and drive up each other’s competitive nature. Sports anime take pages out of shounen anime and create a cast of characters who get along well and clash at the same time. Check out as we dive in further next.
The Passion / The Drive
The diverse cast of characters really create drive in each other. The mere competitive nature that is created between characters can help light a fire in the hearts of viewers. How often do viewers watch a sports anime and feel driven to do something great? Did you ever watch an anime and feel like you could accomplish something? These characters have passion for their sports and sometimes, they really make you want to participate in these sports like swimming in Free!, ballroom dancing in Ballroom e Youkoso, or something along the lines of free running like in Prince of Stride (maybe).
Each character introduced really continues to stoke the fires in each of the other characters, especially our main character. Haruka just wants to swim. Ushio wants to be Yokozuna and do sumo. Yuri has rediscovered a love for ice skating. Of course, this is not just limited to only male sports. There’s also Haruka who discovers the sport of volleyball, Nozumi who loves keijo, and Special Week who absolutely wants to win the derby. There are so many different sports anime full of passion and drive. It’ll really light the fire in you with at least one series.
Regardless of how competitive the characters are, there is such a feeling of camaraderie in sports anime. You can see how well all of the characters get along as they are each other’s motivation in their sport but also their equal in sports. We see this in anime like Harukana Receive, Days, Free!, Kuroko no Basuke, Hinomaruzumou, Kaze ga Tsuyoku Fuiteru, etc. They may be each other’s competition, but they all share a similar passion that brings the most unlikely people close as friends. This is so similar to how we as people make friends with unlikely individuals. We find similarities or interests we share so that we can befriend each other. It’s so fun to see how these different yet similar people get along in sports anime from their outings for nourishment to shopping adventures for proper uniforms. Seeing these guys get along and make lasting relationships with each other can really ignite a fire in just the right people.
Sports anime also shows us how we can find ourselves. Many of the characters in sports anime discover a real part of themselves in a new sport. Maybe not Ushio from Hinomaruzumou but Yuma and Chihiro discovered something new about themselves in sumo. Haruka found out that she has a propensity for volleyball in Harukana Receive and she helps Kanata find her self confidence when it comes to volleyball. Rei learns how to swim and discovers the fun in team sports. It’s all about finding your identity, and for many, it comes in sports. Sports can really bring out a new aspect of your personality and identity that you never knew you had. Seeing Tatara get into ballroom dancing will just inspire you.
There’s so much fun in sports anime; it’s no wonder we have been seeing a great number of sports anime come out these days. What do you readers out there enjoy about sports anime? Do you have one that has drawn you in? Feel free to share your thoughts below!