Sports anime has now become a genre in itself but out of all the anime in this genre, one of the most popular names is ‘Kuroko no Basket’. I used to be a big basketball enthusiast back in the day and ‘Slam Dunk’ had always been my go-to anime for my dose of the sports genre. That’s because its core premise always relied on the spirit of the game and not on any other mundane elements. So after watching a really good anime from this genre, I was hesitant to pick up a new one of the same kind because I was afraid that it may not excite me as much as ‘Slam Dunk’. But once I finally did give it a shot, I realized what a big mistake it would have been had I chosen to avoid it.
‘Kuroko no Basket’ sets a standard right from the first few episodes and builds up a status quo for most of the main characters. From the third episode itself, you get to see a basketball match that is full of exciting moves and slam dunks. The best part about it is that it ignores the technicality of the sport and focuses more on the excitement and drama around it. Some might see this as a negative but if you really want to focus too much on the fouls and time-outs side of a sport, then why are you even watching an anime? ‘Kuroko no Basket’ brings in the right balance between the technical side of the game and the heart pumping adrenaline rush of it. This turned out to be a very smart move and because of this, the series becomes enjoyable for even the casual anime viewers who may not really be into the sport.
Another great thing about ‘Kuroko no Basket’ is that it drives the plot through the basketball matches using two different plot points: one is the use of relationships between the characters who are either involved in the same teams or in the opposite teams. This helps in simultaneous character development without losing focus on the main motive of the premise; the other plot point focuses on the game itself and is driven by the abilities of different players. It’s really enjoyable to see how each of them display their unique prodigal abilities and grow as players over time. This not only allows a smooth character progression but also adds a lot of value to each basketball match where the presence of each player becomes very significant.
Even the music of the show gets you all fired up with heavy electric guitar riffs and solos in the background. The opening and the closing themes also feature rock music, which warms you up for a new episode and prepares you for all the basketball action that is coming your way. One thing that gets annoying at the beginning of each episode is the introduction of the “Generation of Miracles” before each episode. While I do understand the sentiments behind this, I feel it should only be shown for the first few episodes.
I still wouldn’t say that it’s better than ‘Slam Dunk’ but for me, it is undoubtedly one of the best sports anime ever made. Even if you have no interest in basketball or even sports in general, the thrill and the excitement of the show are enough to make it extremely memorable. And if you happen to be a basketball fanatic, then this will be the ultimate motivator for you to start shooting some hoops.
Kuroko no Basket Season 4 Release Date: When Will it Premiere?
‘Kuroko no Basket’ season 1 premiered on April 8, 2012 and ended on September 22, 2012 with a total of 25 episodes. This was then followed by a season 2 that came out on October 16, 2013 and lasted till March 30, 2014, featuring the same number of episodes as the first season. Right after this, a third season of the anime premiered on January 11, 2015 and went on till June 30, 2015. Following that, a sequel movie named ‘Kuroko no Basket Movie 4: The Last Game’ was released on March 18, 2017.
As much as I would love to watch a new season of the anime, as of now, it seems very less likely that there will be one. This is because the manga has been labeled as “complete”. The final movie has a very conclusive ending leaving no scope for any more side stories and almost all the characters of the team, who are third years, have graduated. So even if the creators decide to come up with a new season, they’ll have to replace the old characters with new ones. That could be one huge risk because the viewers have very well connected with the current characters.
At this point ‘Kuroko no Basket’ season 4 release date of 2021 or 2022 seems like a distant dream. We will update this section as soon as we learn more.
Kuroko no Basket English Dub:
The English Dub of ‘Kuroko no Basket’ is available on Crunchyroll.
Kuroko no Basket Plot:
‘Kuroko no Basket’ first starts off with the story of the basketball team of Teikou Junior High School that is very well known for being crowned as the champions for three years in a row. The five key players of the team often leave their opponents in complete despair with their impeccable skills and gameplay. But soon, all of them graduate and part ways to later face each others as rivals from different high schools.
Taiga Kagami and Tetsuya Kuroko are two newly recruited players of the Seirin High School basketball team. While Taiga’s skillset is pretty evident from his past experience in the US and also his tall and athletic appearance, Kuroko appears to be a rather strange choice for the team. Unlike Taiga, Kuroko is neither tall nor is he all that athletic, but he has a special skill in the court — the ability to move around without being noticed. He is labeled as “phantom sixth man” of the team because he moves stealthily and is able to pass the ball and assist his teammates throughout the game.
The anime follows the journey of Taiga and Kuroko, along with other players of the Seirin High School team, as they make their way through the Interhigh Championship. Along the way, they face some really skilled opponents who were once a part of the legendary Teikou High School team and have extraordinary abilities that can only be overshadowed by Taiga and Kuroko.
Kuroko no Basket Characters:
Kagami was in the US until now and has recently moved to Japan in order to pursue his high school. From the very beginning, he shows immense potential in the game of basketball and is very known for his freakishly high jump. His jump increases with every single match, allowing him to defend most shots made by his opponents. His dream is to one day defeat all the legendary players of the Teikou Junior High school, who are known as “The Generation of Miracles”, to become the #1 player in Japan.
Apart from basketball, Kagami also proves to be surprisingly good at cooking, which is a skill he has acquired after staying alone for many years. His huge appetite comes as no surprise, considering his huge athletic frame. Though he has just returned from the US, Kagami’s grades in English are horrible. One thing he fears the most is dogs because in the past, he was once attacked by a dog and he never really got over that incident. On and off the court, Kagami and Kuroko often get into a lot of arguments but they always end up settling them and continue being friends. They are both referred to as the “Seirin’s Freshmen Duo” because together, they are a force to be reckoned with.
Tetsuya is the main protagonist of the show and is known as the phantom because of his impeccable misdirection and passing skills. The reason why no one’s really able to notice him while he passes the ball is because of his extremely tiny built, which allows him to stay “invisible”. He has light blue hair that matches his blue eyes and he often walks around with a blank, dull look on his face. There is nothing more to him than what is visible on the outside and just like his presence in the court, he remains unnoticed in real life as well. He works really hard on his gameplay and always tends to put the needs of the team in front of his own. He never tries to strive for glory all on his own through any kind of solo gameplay.
While he may appear to be very fragile and calm most of the times, his intolerance towards foul play turns him into an absolute beast. When he’s pissed off, even the biggest of players can have a hard time beating him up because deep within him, he has an undying fighting spirit. He usually refers to himself as the shadow that gets stronger with the light. Which means that he always plays for someone else and if the player he is playing for is strong, then his gameplay improves considerably. In the Seirin High School team, Tetsuya plays as the shadow of Kagami.