Winter 2020 Anime: Official Info, Airdates & Trailers
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This week’s Grand Blue gave me what I was thirsting for: a bit of diving and the sea, garnished with a serious scene here and there. Of course, there is the usual madness, but I think at this point me as well as all the other viewers are so much used to it, it is not worth mentioning anymore. Which seems a bit sad, because it also makes it sound like it’s boring – which it is not! Not entirely… Just a bit repetitive. Let’s take a closer look at this review if you will!
Japanese Title: 初バディ(Hatsu Badii)
Warming us up for this episode is a very relatable scene, where Iori and his friends realize that their next test snuck up on them and it’s too late to cram last minute – which is understandable, as the subject is German. Not an easy language. So Iori and his classmates try to cheat by copying their notes to the smallest size possible and then hiding them in different spots. No surprise that it didn’t turn out as expected… The story then continues with the diving club, where they are holding a welcome party for
Cakey Aina and she has to go through all the things that Iori went through when he joined the club. However, he now is on the other side, making Aina stare in horror at her naked senpais and asking them to please put on some clothes. In the end, the club even manages to go diving for once…
This is a very, very personal highlight. They are taking German classes! Wuhu! I think nobody in their right mind would pick up German because it is, after all, a hard language. I only know how to speak it because I was born into it. Let me tell you, I never did well with grammar tests, I only was good because our main tests are always (creative) writing and I can do that well enough. So that’s what made up for me failing the grammar tests… That being said, there is no way they could have learned all for a German test in one night. And it was hilarious watching them try to hide their cheat sheets. Let me also mention the teacher, who probably was supposed to be a stereotypical man from Germany? They went for the very strict, humorless side of Germany. And of course, he had blue eyes. At least he wasn’t blond…
I have to – once again – declare my love for this opening. I think it is my personal highlight of each episode. It is a summery, good song that makes me want to go out, enjoy the day, swim in the sea, meet some friends… It’s just perfect for a series that is about diving (if only it were…).
Most of the time the episode felt a bit like a throwback to Episode 1 and 2, where Iori did not yet accept his fate and tried to fight the nakedness, partying, and non-diving. This time Aina is on the side of trying to tell everybody how strange they are and being the only one thinking it is strange to be naked. Iori is so deep in the club, he doesn’t even think about being naked anymore. It was fun to see it again. But mind you, it’s not going to stop me from saying that it also was a bit repetitive and didn’t have the impact or got the laughs that it got the first round… More like a cheap way to fill the space before an important scene.
Let’s make this short. Iori and Kohei attempting to play the Pocky game (which they conveniently changed to Pochi, I guess for copyright reasons). Loved that scene.
This deserves to be big! It deserves to be at the top of the review, but that would be boring! So anyway! WE WENT INTO THE SEA! THERE WERE FISH THERE, DID YOU SEE!?
It was so beautiful and touching, the fish were cute and Chisa was beautiful and looked very serious indeed, but also very happy when Iori said he had fun. Because she loves diving and fish and she tried hard to show him stuff. She is a fangirl. A fangirl of the depths of the ocean. So when someone tells her he had fun thanks to her guidance, then she blushes and is happy and super cute and I understand her so much because that’s me as well, with all the stuff that I fangirl about. So yeah, this was my highlight and will be worth any filler stories with nakedness.
Also part of this were the moments where they tried to explain the sign language one uses under water. One thing I remember most vividly is the part where you use thumbs up for swimming up, so you have to be careful when you want to say that you are ok that you are using the right sign. The part where they try to translate what the naked-senpais say was a lot of fun. Iori using the sign language to get help from the guys with Nanaka was also spot on. That’s what I love about the show!
There is this crazy scene, where we see some sweets on the table. It’s a chocolate-covered cookie in a strange shape. Bamboo shape. They are called Takenoko no Sato. The same company makes a similarly styled cookie, which is a chocolate mushroom that has a cookie-like stem. That one is called Kinoko no Yama. There is a very heated debate over which ones are the better snacks. Is it the Takenoko, where the chocolate is dripping over the cookie equally? Or is it Kinoko, where you bite into the sweet, sweet chocolate and just add to the taste with a bit of cookie? Whichever it is, the heated discussions are all over the country and them putting it into the anime really amused me. I personally always say that I like them both equally. Just to make sure I am not getting into a fight with someone. Honestly, it’s the Kinoko. Try them if you can.
For this part, I just wanted to give you a brief introduction as to how I know the Japanese test situation and why I think the most unrealistic thing we have seen so far in this series is not all the naked guys but this moment with the cheating… I don’t know if it is like this all the time, but here is what I have experienced.
I took the Japanese Language Proficiency Test multiple times already and I took the TOEIC (Test of English for International Communication) in Japan. All the times the situation was similar. You were assigned a room and a seat in that room, you had to put your phone into a plastic bag, close that bag and put it into your own bag or under your table. Then you weren’t allowed to have anything on the table except for your pens (without any case) and an eraser. (In Japan you normally do not blow your nose with other people in front of you, so you didn’t even need tissues on the table. Which can get really annoying really fast, if you take the test in February…) We weren’t even allowed to get up before the time is up. We just had to wait until they would collect all of our test sheets and then we could leave the room. So can you see why I think they were stupid for trying to cheat? Even the regular university class exams were really strict, we had to have one seat between the person next to us so… That’s what I have experienced.
Last week, I might have been a bit too easy on everybody. There wasn’t as much chest action as I hoped there would be, even though the random rock-paper-scissors did help a bit. But Nanaka totally disappointed! So let’s try again next week!
We will drink to tennis! Tennis balls, tennis rackets, tennis fields, tennis references… I hope that everybody will need to switch to water halfway through the episode. Cheers!
At last, there was progress in the diving part of the story. It really makes me look back on the episode with a really happy feeling. Then I look forward to next weeks episode when in reality we already could see that there will be more of the tennis club people and less diving… I still have hope, it just isn’t very bright. Let’s see what next week’s episode will bring! See you next week!
NEXT EPISODE: Doubles
Keep warm this winter season with the latest anime info at MANGA.TOKYO!
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