Anime Vice News

KUROKO'S BASKETBALL is Unintentionally Ridiculous?!

Episode #1 -- Special Review. Have these guys ever even played b-ball?

Speaking as a guy who grew up playing in rec leagues and ‘Fun’-damental summer camps, and who continues to play pick-up games fairly often, I found this to be… quite unintentionally hilarious.

They say that familiarity breeds contempt, and maybe that’s a meaner way of saying ‘humor,’ because I couldn’t stop snickering over how something as… basic to me as basketball would be treated in the same terms as some exotic martial art here. Maybe this is what it feels like to be a Japanese watching one of the AMERICAN NINJA flicks… but… but…

For crying out loud, there’s a middle school ball team in this show that’s legendary enough to be referred to as the “Generation of Miracles!”

There’s a super-aggressive forward who takes the game so seriously that he hits the paint like a yakuza bad boy more psychotic than Ryuji Yamazaki!

And there’s a pretty boy whose awe-inspiring passing skills come from what’s essentially a supernatural ability to be invisible on the court!

This is all so absurdly melodramatic, it's even harder to take seriously than the shows you usually suspend your disbelief over. Maybe it's intentional humorous then.

If the crew weren't making this with their tongues in cheek, I'd have to assume that they've never actually dribbled a ball in their lives. That doesn't have to be a prerequisite, certainly, but it does exude a certain odor you can sniff when comparing this to a show like SLAM DUNK (which seems to be coming from a solider base of experience).

Watch, "I Am Kuroko" and decide for yourself, then read my write-up on this season's other hot topic shows --WITCH CRAFT WORKS + RECENTLY, MY SISTER IS UNUSUAL + WIZARD BARRISTERS + ROBOT GIRLS Z + HAMATORA

About the Author

Tom Pinchuk’s a writer and personality with a large number of comics, videos and features like this to his credit. Visit his website - - tompinchuk.com - - and follow his Twitter: @tompinchuk
sickVisionz moderator on March 18, 2014 at 8:01 a.m.

This show is actually pretty good. It's supposed to be pretty silly (I think any show with magic miniskirts and characters with naturally green, purple, blue, pink, and neon red hair is supposed to be comical to some degree) and it essentially like a battle shonen set in something resembling the real world where people fight on the basketball court with magic powers. They try to somewhat ground the powers by basing them off of basketball techniques by they're out there.

It's battle shonen with basketball fights. If you look at it like that, I think you can find a lot to enjoy if battle shonen is something you like.

Plus I mean, you have stuff like this:

zaldaron March 18, 2014 at 8:13 a.m.

Hmm are not the things you talk about done in most American sport movies? The college basketball movies I remember watching do this though less blatently arguably (and maybe that is what bothers you here and in kill la kill the blatentness of it?) Certainly the US Olympic hockey team that beat the Russians was called a miracle team and the US Olympic basketball team was basically called a team of miracle workers.

sickVisionz moderator on March 18, 2014 at 8:31 a.m.

@zaldar said:

Hmm are not the things you talk about done in most American sport movies? The college basketball movies I remember watching do this though less blatently arguably

It's not arguably, unless you've seen basketball films where people are literally doing magic or something like Air Bud where a dog is doing slam dunks and hitting 3 pointers. Most sports films are either based off of a true story or the thing they play up is the drama rather than fantastical athletic abilities.

takashichea moderator is online on March 18, 2014 at 1:12 p.m.

I'm not a basketball fan. I was pretty short for my age, 5 foot 8 right now. I'm not much a sports person, but I like shooting hoops sometimes. I didn't get into Kuroko's Basketball because of that.

It was based on my teammate who got me into Guilty Crown. We were big fans of Sket Dance and Kingdom Hearts. In one of Kuroko's Basketball episode reviews, I remember he pulled a Kingdom Hearts reference where Kuroko is the shadow to Taiga Kagami's light. I tried it and after the first episode, I did a marathon on it. I couldn't stop watching. It was not like any sport anime show I watch. None of the moves are realistic, but I couldn't care less. Like sickVisionz said, it was a mix of Battle Shonen and basketball mixed in. It was very addicting and quirky to watch.

I love the show. Later on, I find the demographics for this show overwhelming female as I read comments on Crunchyroll and ANN's articles on Kuroko's Basketball. I was intrigued why there are more female fans of this show than male fans.

whiskerson March 18, 2014 at 4:51 p.m.

@takashichea said:

I was intrigued why there are more female fans of this show than male fans.

With so many strapping young lads bouncing around, is it any wonder? He he :)

takashichea moderator is online on March 18, 2014 at 5:01 p.m.

@whiskers:

Same goes for Magi: The Labyrinth of Magic, Supernatural (CW series), and Young Justice (Cartoon Network). I love those shows, but I didn't know this show and three other ones had a huge female fan base. It's interesting, and I wanted to put a blog or something together besides "strapping young lads" that makes these shows a big magnet for female audiences just for kicks.

whiskerson March 18, 2014 at 5:17 p.m.

@takashichea: I haven't seen any of those shows, so can't really comment on them. It's the same with Kuroko because I've only started watching it and can't say anything upfront. But the reason I started watching Kuroko no Basket is because I've recently seen another sport themed anime show which I enjoyed very much. It featured a lot of different elements that made it fun to watch, not just cute guys. But I'm not really a sports fan, so I'm not sure if this one will keep my attention as well.

takashichea moderator is online on March 18, 2014 at 5:28 p.m.

@whiskers:

I love this show because of the characters and their interactions and relationships that makes it entertaining to watch. Kuroko's invisible gag was pretty unique. The animation that was done by Production IG is spectacular. I don't think I pay attention to the story. Now I think about it, those basketball matches were long.

I think it's unlikely for Tom to review this show. I should invite you to the Kuroko's Basketball Discussion. and I were the main players until I told Kobra that I'm going to save the last 10 episodes of Kuroko's Basketball 2 and marathon it when it ends. I enjoy the series better as a marathon. I did the same thing for season 1 back in summer 2012 or 2013.

whiskerson March 18, 2014 at 5:42 p.m.

@takashichea: Thanks! I'll check it out. By the way, there's one thing that irks me in this show: the shading! I hate the way the drew the shading under their chins :(

zaldaron March 19, 2014 at 6:08 a.m.

@sickVisionz: ok I hadn't seen this show so didn't know what it did which was the reason for the arguably. It has been awhile since I saw a sports movie but I remember the athleticism in them being rather ridiculous.

sickVisionz moderator on March 19, 2014 at 8:43 a.m.

@zaldar: What sports movies are you watching? The only ones I can think of like what you've seen is stuff like Space Jam, which features Michael Jordan and Bugs Bunny.

zaldaron March 19, 2014 at 2:16 p.m.

@sickVisionz: oh its just a memory of ones like mighty ducks and the one on gonzaga's basketball team. I haven't seen the anime here but the level of magic in it seems to be larger than I first thought given the discussion.

Dig Deeper into Kuroko's Basketball

Follows Tetsuya Kuroko and Taiga Kagami on making their basketball team, Seirin Basketball Team, the best team in all of Japan. The original story was written and illustrated by Tadatoshi Fujimaki.

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