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Haikyu!! - Anime Review

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Overview

Haikyu!! revolves around the Karasuno High School's volleyball team and its members. This series seems pretty down to earth, I am hoping that there is less over the top killer moves, although those provide great laughs.

The series starts with a focus on Shoyo Hinata, a hyperactive and passionate volleyball player who is considered short for his position on the court. He started playing volleyball after being inspired when he saw an equally short player nicknamed 'The Little Giant' playing for Karasuno High School.

Hopelessly optimistic, Hinata is the only player who could play the game of volleyball in his junior high school. Entering Karasuno introduced him into a whole new world of competitive volleyball. By using Hinata as the focus, the anime is able to introduce volleyball and its various terms to viewers like me, who know nothing about the game.

Haikyu!!

(yes, they included the exclamation marks in the title!)

haikyu!!
Credit: Haikyu!! Opening

Music

One of the main reasons I love watching anime is that I get to discover new Japanese bands. Haikyu!! has great songs in both its opening and ending sequence. 

SPYAIR's Imagination is used as Haikyu!!'s opening. SPYAIR is an interesting band, with surprisingly good music aside from the one used in the anime. Some bands or artistes featured in anime tend to be one-hit wonders. I have not noticed them before, but apparently they have songs featured in several anime series such as Gintama and Bleach. 

The anime ending features NICO Touches The Walls's Tenchi Gaeshi. NICO Touches The Walls has a long history of contributing to anime music. Some of their hits include Diver, which was used in Naruto Shippuden as well as Hologram, in Fullmetal Alchemist: The Brotherhood.

Haikyu!! Opening

SPYAIR!

Characters

From Karasuno High

Shoyo Hinata

Shoyo Hinata is considered as the main character in Haikyu!!. The series focuses on his growth as a player, as well as his partnership with Kageyama who is able to fully utilise Hinata's abilities. For a relatively short player, Hinata has the ability to jump very high. He is also depicted to be a fast player with great stamina.

Tobio Kageyama

Tobio Kageyama is a talented setter. He was nicknamed as the 'King', a nickname that he hates. He is fiercely passionate about volleyball, and was abandoned by his junior high team due to his arrogance. He has since changed and is more open to the concept of teamwork.

Ryūnosuke Tanaka

Ryunosuke Tanaka is a second year student at Karasuno High. He is Hinata's first mentor, and helps both Hinata and Kageyama to learn to work together.

Kei Tsukishima

Kei Tsukishima is also a first year. He is tall and is a blocker on the team. He is not very passionate and finds most things a pain, although he seems to find joy in taunting both Hinata and Kageyama.

Daichi Sawamura

Daichi Sawamura is the captain of the Karasuno High volleyball team. He is the most balanced player in the team, and is scary when angered. 

Kōshi Sugawara

Koshi Sugawara is the vice captain of Karasuno High volleyball team. He is a setter and is highly motivated. He recognizes Kageyama's talent and is willing to give up his starting spot for the good of the team.

Asahi Azumane

Asahi Azumane is the ace of the team. He is tall and well built, but despite his fierce looks, he is surprisingly sensitive. 

Yu Nishinoya

Yu Nishinoya plays the role of the libero. He is a defender on the court and is nicknamed as 'Karasuno's Guardian Deity'. He has quick reflexes and a loud personality. In my opinion, he is similar to Hinata. 

Conclusion

To date, Haikyu!! looks promising as a sports anime which remains down to earth while providing the excitement and passion that is characteristic of sports anime. This is a good series for people who know nothing about volleyball. 

If you are interested in sports anime, an interesting anime to consider would be Yowamushi Pedal.

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