Yuri on Ice

"I'm the one who loves this program Victor and I made the most in the whole world! I'm not finished yet. I'll be done when I get the gold with Victor." - Yuri

Yuri!!! on Ice is a sports anime about a young figure skater named Yuri Katsuki and his journey in the world of competitive skating. Yuri had grown up obsessed with world champion Victor Nikiforov and loved to emulate his idol's routines. After a crushing defeat in a competition, Yuri returned home unsure about his future, and skated Victor's gold medal winning routine in an effort to revive his love of skating. Unbeknownst to Yuri, his performance was filmed and leaked, and the next thing Yuri knew was that Victor himself had arrived in Japan with the intent of becoming his coach. Victor and Yuri teamed up with the goal of winning gold in the Grand Prix Final, and along the way found something in each other that to them was even more precious than a winning medal.

The characters and relationships in this anime were one of my favorite things about it (and I loved all the pets!). I enjoyed watching Victor and Yuri's growing relationship and how pure and organic it felt. Victor's belief in Yuri's true abilities and the drive to help him succeed were so inspiring to watch, and I loved how Yuri was able to use his love and respect for Victor to keep pushing forward. Yuri and Victor's relationship was so beautiful and authentic and made for so many touching scenes as we watched them grow closer. Although Yuri had a wonderfully supportive group of family and friends on his side, it wasn't until Victor entered his life that he fully realized that fact and also started to believe in himself. I found it heartening to watching Yuri's routines and how he improved with each performance (especially when he spontaneously incorporated Victor's signature move to surprise him), and also how his thoughts always drifted to Victor when the going got tough.

I really loved the supporting cast and how even though I wanted to always root for Yuri, they were all so likable that I wanted them to all do their best too. Yurio was such an interesting character and his quick temper and attitude could be so endearing. I loved how even though he felt a rivalry towards Yuri, he really wanted to have him by his side as a competitor and also a friend. I've found that I love sports anime because of the team aspect of it and how the characters depend on and support one another, and even though the figure skating sport is more solo, the skaters really cheered one another on. One of my favorite scenes was when the talented and overconfident JJ was struck by a sudden and unexpected anxiety attack which caused him to falter during his routine. The other skaters were stunned and watched in growing horror as he struggled through his performance. When he was able to slowly but firmly push through his inner voices during his second routine, it was encouraging to both JJ and the other characters as he worked through it in front of everyone and managed to place high in the competition. It was always moving to watch the characters overcome their personal struggles and find satisfaction with knowing they did their best, even when they didn't reach the top. The lessons learned and experiences gained could be even more valuable to them in the long run.

The animation in this series with the skating routines was just beautiful. They flowed so well and we were really impressed by how it looked so natural and elegant, and how they captured the unique style of each of the performances. We often watched on the edge of our seats because it was just so realistic and we wanted so badly for the characters to do well. The music was also really well done, most notably in the routines, and I loved how each piece of music fit the characters personalities so perfectly (especially Yuri and JJ's tracks). I like to collect anime soundtracks and Yuri on Ice is one of my favorites. Everything in the anime came together so flawlessly to make a truly memorable and special series that is one of the best we have seen.

Victor, Yuri, Yurio
Victor, Yuri, Yurio
Gotta Supercharge It!! Pre-Grand Prix Final Special!
Gotta Supercharge it! Pre-Grand Prix Final Special!, Gotta Super-Supercharge it! Grand Prix Final Short Program
Victor/Yuri, Victor and Yurio, Yuri and Yurio, Yurio/Otabek, Victor and Chris, Yuri and Phichit, Victor and Makkachin
Victor/Yuri, Yuri and Yurio, Victor and Chris, Yuri and Phichit, Yurio/Otabek