Episode 1 passed by with a lot of fanfare. It was well-received by fujoshis and fudanshis, as well as a real-life skater, and even Japanese BL mangakas alike. Tumblr exploded with tons of fan art and screencaps of the show, fanfics from Archive of Our Own doubled.
This show is totally on the right track so far. Following up an action-packed episode 1, looks like it’s not going to tone down the yaoi hints, and I’m totally loving it! This show certainly outgays itself every episode!!!
The anime airs on TV Asahi, around 2:20 AM in Japan (that’s 1:20 AM here in the Philippines). I’m still at work around this time *sobs* so by the time I get home, I’m already a couple of hours late for the fanfare. Oh well. That’s life.
Stop blabbering, me. Let’s review episode 2, shall we?
It’s big news: Victor Nikiforov left Russia, missing out this year’s Grand Prix Finals, much to the dismay of his coach Yakov. Rumor has it that he’s going to be Katsuki Yuuri’s coach, but no one knows where exactly he is right now, so they can’t confirm it yet. Reporters are itching to get news.
Meanwhile, dead tired from his long travel, Victor is sleeping off on the tatami mat on Yuuri’s family onsen in Hasetsu, completely oblivious to the world.
Minako-sensei arrives to confirm the news to Yuuri. But after she sees Victor sprawled on the floor, she gives Yuuri some advice to take advantage of the current situation and let Victor coach him.
Meanwhile, Yuuri is still in a daze.
Minako-sensei’s words still rang in his ears. He inspired Victor? But how? What exactly did he do on that particular routine that inspired him? Here he was, thinking of ways on how to revive his skating career, and suddenly Victor shows up. It’s all surreal.
Victor wakes up, demanding food. He asks what Yuuri’s favorite food is, so he was presented with a huge helping of katsudon. And oh boy, he loves it.
Yuuri mentioned that he eats it only when he wins in competitions. But when he also said he ate it recently, and Victor asks him why, Yuuri has dug his own grave. Who knew that Victor can be merciless while still looking cute and hot as ever?
He was barred from eating katsudon for now, and Victor calls him kobuto-chan, aka little piggy. How cute.
Yuuri’s reaction was priceless.
Victor was ushered to his room, mentioning that he’ll ask payment for his services once Yuuri wins. And then after, loud screams from fangirls and fanboys were heard all over the world. Fanfics were written furiously with speeds faster than light. Gifs and screenshots were taken and posted right away on social media. Ovaries exploded, sighs have been uttered, and everyone (including me) were found sprawling on the floor, with blood on their noses and pervy smiles on their faces.
But this show is not yet done fiddling with our hearts, fellow fujoshis and fudanshis!
The next day, Yuuri starts his training, and they also dropped by to Ice Castle Hasetsu. Of course, the Nishigori couple and triplets were shocked. Victor starts his warm ups, while all of them look in awe.
However, Yuuri is still not allowed to skate unless he loses some weight, so he’ll be working out for now. As part of Victor’s Operation Getting to Know Yuuri, he tags along during Yuuri’s daily runs, while asking him the most mind-blowing questions out of nowhere.
Take note that the Japanese word Victor used is koibito, which means lover. Girlfriend, on the other hand, is kanojo in Japanese. I really don’t know why the translator opted for the word girlfriend, but it’s a stretch compared to lover, which makes things a little more, ahem, ambiguous. And that choice of word from Victor tells us a lot of things. Like, A LOT.
Maybe the translators think that lover sounds too formal? But..ugh, I don’t buy that explanation, really…
They were distracted by Makkachin’s barking at the castle behind them. Yuuri tells Victor that there is a ninja house inside it, and Victor got excited.
Now the world knows where he is…thanks to Instagram. Btw, his username is v_nikiforov.
Reporters stormed the inn, and the news spread like wildfire. Even Ice Castle Hasetsu was bombarded with visitors. The sleepy town suddenly became lively. But Yuuri went on with his training like nothing’s happening.
Someone was not happy with the news though: Yuri Plisetsky.
Victor made a promise to him years ago, and Yuri(o) sneakily went to Japan to make sure the Victor lives up to it.
Yuri(o) and Yuuri finally met again.
I find it nice that Yuuri, despite being the weak-willed guy that he was, is starting to get more confident of himself. If I was in his place and Yuri(o) is berating me like that, I would’ve punched him in the face or something. Yeah, I’m way older than Yuuri, but I’d do it lol. It’s good to see him keep his cool and act all adult-y to the otherwise bratty and impertinent Yuri(o).
But guys, don’t go on hating Yuri(o). He’s only 15 for chrissakes. And that’s how the writers wrote him up to be like. He’s an ambitious and implusive teenager with raging hormones, and he’s an athlete to boot. Of course, he’d be angsty. I find him cute though.
Gosh, did I mention that I like the angsty background music whenever Yuri(o) appears? It’s cool! It completely reminds the viewer that this guy is all angsty and such. Kinda redundant once you know how explosive Yuri(o)’s attitude can be, but it’s a nice touch. Good choice of music to me.
Yuri(o) finally tells Yuuri why he came all the way from Russia to pick up Victor. Yuuri clearly looks shaken. And Victor? Looking jolly and clueless as usual. But is he really?
In order to resolve the mess that Victor is in right now (well, he and his forgetful self is at fault to begin with), he decides that Yuuri and Yuri(o) will compete instead. The prize is Victor doing whatever the winner wants. Victor will be revealing the routines after one week (or on episode 3, irl).
Being his usual angsty self, Yuri(o) agrees on Victor’s terms. Yuuri is not so thrilled about it, but has no choice but to agree.
With the help of the Nishigori triplets, it was officially announced that there will be a showdown between the two. To make things a little more lively in the Yu-topia inn, Yuri(o) will be staying as well. Yuuri’s older sister, Mari, was elated, since Yuri(o) looks like that one band member that she totally liked.
But having two Yuris can be confusing for her, so she christened Yuri as Yurio. And the name stuck, much to Yurio’s annoyance.
Yuuri is still feeling uneasy. He knows that Yurio is good enough, and he’s dreading the thought of Victor leaving him. However, what pains him most is that Yurio seems to be more comfortable around Victor, while the two of them only exchanged brief talks since Victor arrived here, thanks to his shyness.
Victor noticed that he is absent, and decided to look for his whereabouts. He and Minako-sensei had a long discussion about Yuuri while sharing a drink. He proceeds to Ice Castle Hasetsu afterwards. And indeed, there was Yuuri, practicing his ass off.
From the Nishigori couple, Victor learns a few more things about Yuuri: he doesn’t have too many friends, and yet totally loves to skate.
Now Victor has an idea. He leaves the rink, with Makkachin following him.
The next day, Yuuri’s training officially starts.
Victor started to play snippets of the music the two will use. With two opposing themes–Eros and Agape–it’s already clear to us which piece each of them prefers. Then Victor smashes their expectations by telling them that the exact opposite.
Of course, Yurio, being the angsty guy here, confidently agrees to Victor’s terms nevertheless. But he demands that once he wins, Victor will go back to Russia with him and be his coach.
Yuuri is clearly shaken. All he wants is to be with Victor. He’s now here, and Yurio will take him away? He doesn’t want that to happen. He’ll never give Victor up.
Looks like Victor is pleased with his answer, and he agrees.
And that’s it guys, let’s see what happens in episode 3! 🙂 That trailer looks so delicious..
But to be honest, I’m still walking on eggshells around this show. My greatest fear is that this might end up like Free!!!, with all the skinship and closeness being regarded as “friendship” only. I really hope they don’t go to that route. I am more anticipating that this show could end up like No. 6 instead, but of course, with more *ahem* action. If you know what I mean. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)