Yuri On Ice has been directed by Sayo Yamamoto and written by Mitsurō Kubo. It became the top-selling anime Blu-Ray/DVD in 2017 owing to its popularity in the TV series category. It was first aired on October 6, 2016, and continued until December 22, 2016, for 12 episodes altogether. What sets it apart it from most other fantasy and action-based anime television series is that it is based on a 23-year old Japanese figure skater named Yuri Katsuki who faces a disheartening defeat during the Grand Prix Final and returns to Hasestsu, his hometown, to wallow in his failure. This forms the plot of the anime series.
The series opened to immense critical acclaim and was appreciated all over the world for its storyline and expression of compassion, seamless fighting spirit, heroism, and rivalry. The director of the series Sayo Yamamoto said about the series, “Even when their retirement could be just around the corner, they’d continue to keep fighting and challenging themselves — that compassion for what they loved really stuck with me. That’s why I first came up with the idea of Yuri and Victor; a skater on the edge of retirement and a world champion who becomes his coach, all while remaining both his hero and rival.”
Yuri On Ice Plot:
Having returned to his hometown Hasetsu after being defeated in the Grand Prix Finale, 23-year-old Yuri Katsuki is heartbroken and decides to put a pause on his career as a figure skater. He pays his childhood friend Yuko a visit where he seamlessly demonstrates an advanced skating routine he had learned from his idol, Victor Nikiforov. The footage of this performance is leaked on the internet and catches the Russian figure skating champion’s eye who sets out to Kyushu with a mind to coach Yuri in an attempt to revive his career. Yuri Katsuki had always idolized Victor and Victor is looking forward to his immense talents as a skater. When a child prodigy Russian skater, Yuri Plisetsky comes to know about Victor’s decision of mentoring Yuri Katsuki, he is heartbroken and devastated because Victor had made a promise to him at the beginning of this entire series that he would coach him and specifically design him routinely. To confront Victor, Yuri P. follows Victor to Hasetsu and when confronted, Victor overlooks his promise to Yuri P. and made both of them go against each other on the same song but with different meanings. Victor swore that whoever won would be mentored by him. Yuri Katsuki won and was looking forward to being trained by Victor.
Defeated and disheartened, Yuri P returns to Russia with the desire to win the Grand Prix tournament. Both Yuri P and Yuri K trained very hard for their dream championship and when the day of qualification came, both of them qualified to represent their respective countries. Both of them had to appear for the Grand Prix Championship Finale in Barcelona. During the training period and tournaments happening, Yuri Katsuki and Victor grew very close to each other. People started speculating that they were engaged post the news of Yuri Katsuki buying gold rings for both of them in Barcelona. An unfortunate turn of events follows just before the day of Finale leading to Yuri K believe that he should quit skating post the tournament. The next day on the final round of Skating tournament, Yuri Plisetsky wins the gold medal and Yuri Katsuki has to settle with a silver medal. Post the completion of the tournament, all of them move to St. Petersburg and continue to train alongside. The series takes interesting twists and turns as the characters in the show skate on exceptional choreography to represent their countries in the Grand Prix.
One of the takeaway points of the series is the relationship that Yuri and Viktor share despite belonging from vastly different cultures, an aspect that has been given ample mileage in the series and been explored graciously. In an interview, writer and original designer Mitsurou Kubo had explained, “When you have two fictional characters get into a deep relationship, there’s a trope that this has to have a specific significant meaning. As Coach Victor and Student Yuuri think about what their relationship is, the result is meant to be seen through what their figure skating is about. Be they lovers, friends, or rivals, the two of them could only have something that is meaningful to them, and a lot of that is open to misunderstanding from other people. So I took the most care to depict a strong relationship between the two of them in a non-verbal form as much as possible, told mostly through their actions and the course of the story so that their relationship would not be seen in any too-convenient mold.”
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Yuri On Ice Characters:
Yuri Katsuki: He is the protagonist of the series who has honed his skills by training day and night. He wishes to be like his idol Victor Nikiforov and began skating at a very young age and thus has excellent stamina. After facing some back to back setbacks in his skating career, he decides to take a break and spend time at his hometown. Later in the series, he is shown very possessive about Victor and is extremely passionate about being trained by him. He works hard and bags the second position in the following Grand Prix Championship.
Victor Nikiforov: He hails from Russia and is a seasoned figure skating champion and genius. He is the winner of a ton of competitions that include 5 Grand Prix Finals that he won consecutively. He is also numerous victories at the European Figure Skating Championships to boast about. He is a 27-year-old handsome man who had worked really hard since his childhood to be the name that he is now. He was considered an excellent coach and was the rink mate of Yuri Plisetsky. He made a promise to him that he would coach him if he wins the Grand Prix Championship which he did but seeing the online leaked video of Yuri Katsuki, he is immediately drawn towards him and makes a decision of mentoring him forgetting about the promise he made to Yuri Plisetsky. He made the two Yuris go against each other and later becomes a full-time coach of Yuri Katsuki.
Yuri Plisetsky: He is 15 years old who unlike Yuri K, is a figure skating prodigy. He is the winner of two consecutive Junior Grand Prix Final. Victor Nikiforov is his rink mate. He is Yuri’s rival skater. He started his senior skating debut in the years 2016-17. Yuri P is much better and talented the other people his age group and that’s why he is arrogant and rude at times. He is nicknamed as the Russian Punk due to his aggressive behaviour although he is called the Russian Fairy by some people due to his extremely good looks.
Yuri On Ice Season 2 Release Date:
It’s no wonder that the second season of Yuri on Ice is one of the most anticipated anime series on the international platform given its fantastic run during the first season. Fans all around are waiting with bated breaths for any news on their favourite anime televisions series. Well, here’s what we have for you – Since it was only on October 16, 2016, that the first season was wrapped up, it’s too soon to speculate the air date of the next season, especially when reports suggest that a feature film on the anime series is under production. That being said, we can’t rule out the possibility of a second season of the show yet. MAPPA, the Anime studio that sponsors Yuri on Ice has been relatively secretive about the next season but did shed light on the feature film which might see a 2019 release. That’s definitely something to rejoice.
Yuri On Ice English Dubbing:
The first season of Yuri On Ice is available, in the meantime, with English dubbing and subs on Funimation and Crunchyroll. The show’s tremendous popularity ensured that it was available for streaming on all major anime websites and the best of voice actors were brought on board to ensure the task was taken care of as needed. Fans can also catch the series on Youtube, among other credible sites.
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