Hagiwara Sakura and Miyazawa Elena are the leading members of a popular idol group, Sweet Diva. One day, Elena is injured by the attack of a female pro-wrestler Kazama Rio during the recording of a TV program. Sakura gets mad at Rio and gives her a dropkick. To avenge Elena, Sakura enters the female pro-wrestling matches.
Do you like breasts? Of course you do, you wouldn't be watching anime if you didn't. Do you like wrestling? Doesn't matter, have some more breasts.
Sekai De Ichiban Tsuyoku Naritai (Sekatsuyo for short) is a story about breasts. Sentient breasts with butts attached for panty shots. Two pairs of terrific titties stop by to watch other bodacious boobies bounce around in a wrestling ring. One pair of breasts gets rankled and gives a dropkick to another pair, setting off a string of wacky adventures in the world of foxy wrestling.
Sakura, the main character, has her personality summed up entirely in the show's title (spoiler: she
wants to be the strongest in the world). The others have about as much depth as they do cleavage. There's the mean one, the wise one, the spunky one, the rival, the big shot, and a bunch of others who exist just to fill space (and bras). But who watches fanservice shows for the compelling characters? How about some compelling coconuts, right!? Unfortunately, Sekatsuyo falls short on this as well. There are roughly three kinds of shots throughout the series: close-ups of boobs, close-ups of butts, and close-ups of Sakura twisted up like a pretzel moaning in agony(?). These staple shots are repeated over and over in every episode, sometimes with differently colored boobs and butts, but always with lots and lots of moaning. Seriously, you could just listen to a clip of Sakura shouting “ITAIIII” and skip the first three episodes (which would vastly improve the pacing, more on that later). Don't get me wrong, I love fanservice, and I love breasts, but I also love a little variety. Couldn't we have had a wardrobe malfunction, or some shower shenanigans, or drunken skinship, or a hot springs episode, or ANYTHING to break up the “ITAIIII” monotony? The answer is no, we can't, not until the blu-ray specials at least. Oh well, even if the fanservice is a bit disappointing, at least the action is entertaining, right?
Let's take a minute to actually look at the wrestling presented in Sekatsuyo. Don't worry, we'll get back to the breasts soon enough. Sekatsuyo can't seem to decide if its wrestling is fake or real. On one breast, the characters seem take an inhuman amount of punishment in the ring, but there's never any mention of some supernatural wrestling powers or fighting spirit or any of that. Later on, Sakura compliments another character not on her athletic ability, but for going easy on Sakura to ensure the match is entertaining for the audience. On top of this, the animators went to great lengths to make sure all the moves were performed “safely.” For example, whenever someone takes a piledriver, the piledrivee's head is always clearly tucked in the other girl's thighs, safely away from any contact with the ground. Considering how bad the animation can get elsewhere in the show, I'm positive that the moves were intentionally and consistently shown this way as a reminder that these girls aren't really trying bust each other's boobies. So it's all fake, right?
Not so fast. On the other side of the breast, the characters all seem deathly serious about the various plotlines they get involved in. The show spends an awful lot of time backstage and out of the ring, and not once do we hear any of the characters talk about storylines or planned finishes or any of the “worked” aspects of wrestling. At one point, a masked villainess begins ambushing the other breastlers, and everyone seems genuinely surprised by this unscripted turn of events, even when there's no audience around or any other reason for them to fake surprise. Even in the ring, things get a bit blurry. Despite the moves being obviously safe, the characters still seem to get injured, and even comment on their own status in their thoughts, and try to think of strategies for legitimately beating their opponents. At one point in a match, Sakura's leg is nearly broken by an opponent who is hellbent on ending her career, which hampers her wrestling acumen later in the fight (don't worry though, her breasts are fine). If this was fake, then why would she think privately about how much it hurts and how to work around the injury? If it was real, then why would she risk hurting herself even more doing lots of outlandish flips and throws that wouldn't work without a willing partner? Sekatsuyo can't decide, so it just throws lots of boobs at your face and hopes you won't think too much.
The worst problem with Sekatsuyo, even more so than the same-y fanservice and the hard-to-follow action, is the first three episodes. As in, the ENTIRETY of the first three episodes. There's about 10 minutes of set-up for the plot at the beginning, then nothing but Sakura losing over and over and over and over until you start to wonder why you're wasting your time with this show. Even her fans in-universe give up on the show for the same reason, almost like the producers are saying “it's fine drop this and watch something else.” It's hard to describe the unbearable monotone of these episodes; Sakura loses the same way while shouting the same way as her fans shuffle out the same way. Imagine if Haruhi started with Endless Eight, except there's not even any paranormal explanation. It's really just the same thing over and over and everyone hates it, real or fictional. The show thankfully improves after this, but it's a very high hurdle to jump over for new watchers, and the payoff is still not that great.
If you want to see anime breasts, you can do better than Sekatsuyo. You're on the internet, after all. If you want to see anime breasts wrestling, well, I'm not sure you really can do better at the moment. Wrestling is a very niche topic in anime (the only other example I can think of is Kinnikuman, which is pretty much the opposite of breasts), and shows like this aren't likely to inspire a stampede of copycats. You'll just have to make do with MMA or something in the meantime. Overall, there are worse ways to spend your time than watching Sekatsuyo, and plenty of better ways, but if you want some boobs and don't want to think, then go for it. You have no one to blame but yourself.
Ecchi shows these days are a dime a dozen, and when it comes to a studio known for such works as Samurai Girls and Queen's Blade, people don't get their hopes high for a tight narrative and endearing characters. Shows very clearly labeled as ecchi and marketed as softcore porn for blu-ray buyers from the outset are practically guaranteed to get negative reviews and low scores across the board for their entire duration.
Most deserve it. But not all of them do.
Here we have Wanna Be the Strongest in the World, aka Sekai de Ichiban Tsuyoku Naritai, a show with a title so generic it would
make shounen magazines cry, but with a rather unexpected execution. Yep, that's right: I'm here to say that this show is actually...kind of good.
Speaking of shounen magazines and manga, the story of this one fits in rather well with that style. The lead protagonist, Hagiwara Sakura, takes her stubborn attitude to the max when she decides to temporarily leave her idol group behind in order to get back at a pro wrestler for insulting idols and hurting her best friend by going pro herself and vowing to win a match against the one who slighted her group. But the trip isn't easy; Sakura thought she could just jump in and win a match with a minimal amount of training in the basics, but she got a hard wake up call when Rio tossed her around the ring and bent her in ways that humans probably aren't meant to bend.
But no, Sakura did not give up on her goal, and for months she trained and fought for the strength to win this fight. It's at this point where - if one is paying enough attention - the show actually starts to play with your expectations a little. For the first half of the show, nothing comes easily for Sakura. In fact, the show is extremely tough on her, with her constantly getting beaten down by her opponents and losing match after match until she was nearly ready to give up everything just to spare herself the continued pain of it all. It's odd to see her shown to actually be naive more than stubborn, not able to take nearly as much punishment as she thinks she can, and the show doesn't paint her actions in a very positive light when she's giving up every match and gradually losing all her fans.
But as they say: the harder the struggle, the greater the triumph. When Sakura finally manages to pull her feet out from under her and hang onto the rope, the eventual results are made that much better because of all the hardship she went through on the way. It may not be the most original story, but it does have an unexpected amount of heart.
The show changes gears around the halfway point, and things get a little sketchy for a while. A character is introduced that appears to have little purpose other than to be filler and/or make Sakura look a little better. A new opponent is revealed and the show appears to just be rehashing its first half entirely, which had me pretty disappointed, but a surprise twist comes that, when I really thought about it, actually made a whole lot of sense, tied up multiple loose ends with characters whose roles were appearing to be unclear, and justified many of the problems I would have otherwise had with the rest of the show. It was a very natural progression coming off from the first half that leads up to a good climax and rather cheesy, yet not bad conclusion.
Technically speaking, the show is mostly in that middle range of "you probably won't notice if you're only watching for your own entertainment." The animation budget was clearly saved for the wrestling matches, which are pretty well-done, but the CG audiences show some very rough edges. Sometimes one also has to wonder how big the rings are, because damn, it sure can take these women a long time to run across it. Despite having an idol group as a central focus, the song choice is actually still limited to just the opening and ending themes, which are overall standard fare, neither great nor terrible.
If one looks at this show as pure fanservice meant to sell blu-rays, they'll be missing out on something real that, surprisingly, is actually there. The title may be generic as all hell, but it actually defines what the show is about much more than most of the marketing ever did, and fanservice in the show is actually fairly limited. Aside from an extended shower scene in the first episode, nudity scenes are all quick, lasting only a few seconds, and are completely gone past the halfway point of the series. The rest of the fanservice is in the sexy wrestler outfits, camera shots during the fights, and cries of pain, all of which the show never lets up on, and if that kind of thing bothers you, then you should definitely avoid the show at all costs.
I'm the kind of person who can generally look past a show's flaws if there's still something real and good there to see; I can pick out a diamond in the rough, so to speak. I went into this show basically expecting trash, like most people did, but for some reason I seem to be one of a very limited pool who actually found something worthwhile in the show. It gives me the feeling that many viewers don't even give a show like this a chance, they simply see exposed nipples and apply a stigma to it that means it must be terrible regardless of anything else, because why would a director put such scenes in an otherwise good show? Well, there are any number of reasons, and I for one choose not to dismiss a show just because it uses a few cheap tactics to get viewers when it is otherwise very much worth my time.
What I found here was a show with a tight narrative, a good cast, and more heart than the majority of shows that are only out there to raise flags.
“This is more than just a simple match; this is real drama and real excitement! I dare say it’s the finest form of entertainment in the entire world” – Mariko “Jackal” Toujou, in regards to the final fight in the series.
Dear Mariko, fuck off. Matter of fact, to everyone that was a part of the creation of this show, fuck off! This kind of shit is the reason why the general public sees anime as either for children or as some kind of sick animated porn, that probably includes tentacles. The latter is mainly due to the use of ecchi within anime shows. For those
of you who don't know, ecchi is a genre in anime where playfully sexual actions are present within a show. I personally don’t see ecchi as completely bad, as I have seen shows that have successfully integrated fan-service and lewd acts within a story, whilst not coming across as pandering to the audience (e.g. Prison School and Shimoneta). However, the main problem that I find with the ecchi genre overall is that most ecchi anime uses fan-service for exploiting the sex appeal of characters with the primary reason being to please the audience. This show happens to fall so far down the latter that I honestly think that the staff behind the making of this show have no shame whatsoever. And you know what? That’s probably right! So with that said I will have no problem with calling this show out on its absolute bullshit!
*SPOILERS BELOW BUT I DIDN’T GIVE A FUCK AND NEITHER SHOULD YOU!!!*
Wanna Be the Strongest in the World is a 2013 anime series based off the manga of the same name and was produced by Studio Arms, the studio that made such disappointing and frowned-upon shows such as Brynhildr in the Darkness and Queen’s Blade. They were also responsible for Elfen Lied, take that as you will. The show lasted for 12 episodes and was centred around teen pop singer and main star of the popular idol group “Sweet Diva” Sakura Hagiwara, who becomes a professional wrestler to avenge her best friend and fellow Sweet Diva member Elena Miyazawa, as well as prove that pop idols can also ‘lay the smackdown’ when it comes to working in the ring. What makes this series so… interesting is that it belongs to the ecchi genre and therefore is obviously going to lean more towards the pervy side of the anime medium, but boy! The fan-service in this show is not just present, it is nearly everything that this show does. I am convinced that the people in charge of this show tried to shove in as much fan-service as they possibly could. Within the first 4 minutes of the very first episode, there is already a shower scene with the two main characters of the show, Sakura and Elena, naked, along with some other Sweet Diva members that don’t matter, who are also naked. You may not know this, but both Sakura and Elena are 17 years old… That may shock you and make you feel a little bit bad about yourself, but Japan obviously doesn’t give a fuck about that!
What’s even more insulting about this shit show is when it comes to the wrestling side of things. First off, the attire these women wear look more appropriate as swimming gear or what you would wear sliding down a stripper pole rather than wrestling gear. Just look at the cover of the show and you’ll see the kind of outfits that these women wear. Their scantily-clad gear, accentuating the T&A of each wrestler to such a degree cannot be considered realistic, even for pro wrestling standards. Take one quick bump and we could very well have a wardrobe malfunction on our hands. Now I don’t care much about the objectification of women in this show, but there is no other reasonable explanation of why their gear is so skimpy than that the animators were banking on sex appeal to intrigue the audience and not much else. But this issue has nothing on the amount of breast, groin and ass shots repeated over the entire 12 episodes, coupled with moaning. Lots and lots of painful moaning. If you enjoy listening to the screams of curvaceous yet disproportionate women coming from your screen, this show might seem like a gift from God to you. However, after a while I wouldn’t be surprised if you just got bored masturbating to Wanna Be the Strongest and decided to look up some hentai to get off on because I’m sure that there’s hentai you can find that has more variety of animation than this shit. The number of close-ups of breast and camel toes on this show is so damn excessive and unrestrained that you’ll probably start to relate to their parts more than the characters themselves. Even the number of boobs and vagina clips showed in the first episode, where pro wrestler Rio Kazama humiliates both Sakura and Elena can be considered tame compared to what is shown over the next 11 episodes.
One of the biggest problems this show faces is how it uses the concept of professional wrestling to move the story along. The end of the first episode has Sakura face Rio in a legitimate wrestling match after Rio earlier had beaten down and embarrassed her friend Elena at Berserk gym. Sakura tries to avenge her friends and is beaten in rather quick fashion via passing out to the Rear Naked Choke (a proper submission, but in this show, it’s false advertisement). Sakura got rightfully schooled by the professional and even loses some of her hair as a result, but undeterred she vows to go pro to defend the honour of idols all around the world. She trains her body for three months before taking the ultimate test for rookies: the hellish hundred throws. Basically Sakura takes a total of 100 suplexes from Rio and some other pro wrestlers that don’t even matter, some of which share nearly the same character design as Sakura, the only differences being their hair and wrestling gear. After Rio’s attempts to keep Sakura down along with numerous shots of tits and ass, Sakura survives the challenge, which means that she’s ready to have her first match as a pro. So apparently, they just let you take a hundred bumps and that’s all you need. They didn’t bother to teach her any technique or move-set or even the damn rules before throwing her into a match? We’re two episodes into the shit fest as it’s already a failure of a realistic wrestling drama.
Anyways, Sakura has the first match as a pro and is beaten by being locked in a submission known as the “Boston crab”. But it’s alright since the fans still love her and happy that she gave it her all in that match, until she loses again, and again, and again, all to the same submission manoeuvre. Obviously she’s always put in the Boston crab because the animators kept wanting to show us her ‘bust & crabs’. Sakura loses several matches in a row, gaining a streak like that of a common jobber and causes fans of her and the show itself to lose interest. Luckily for Sakura, the ace of Berserk gym Misaki Toyoda starts mentoring her and gives her the motivation to break out of the submission of her nightmares, and in her next match she does manage to break out of the hold, before immediately losing via pinfall. Wow, great progression. Meanwhile back at the idol group Sweet Diva, the group has practically become stagnant thanks to their star Sakura becoming a pro wrestler and tapping out to pros that have no development whatsoever. I’m in bewilderment as I’m writing this as to why on Earth did the creator want to make wrestling look realistic? It wants to be a sports drama so badly, yet events in the show and plot points go well beyond the line of ridiculous! If they chose to see pro wrestling as more of a scripted fight than an actual fight, then development wouldn’t have been such a huge issue and they could’ve explored the different lives of idols and pro wrestlers a lot better. But the show doesn’t and would rather take the sport side of it very seriously, with added crotch shots and moaning in between. Fuck this shit.
Halfway into the show, Sakura gets her rematch with Rio, the woman who humiliated her in the first episode, with no real build-up to it other than what happened in that first episode. That shit isn't how wrestling works but oh well, nothing in this show works. In the match, Sakura shows a lot more fighting spirit and refuses to give up, and even manages to hit her double-kick finisher to win the match in a huge upset, scoring her first victory. This could have been a strong moment for the series if they had bothered to show Sakura getting progressively stronger and closer to victory in her matches beforehand as well as actual build-up to the match rather than the half-assed execution we got. And another thing, every single match that we have seen from this show or ever will see all cut out the more acrobatic and entertaining parts of actual wrestling matches that are fun to watch, along with any chain wrestling to help wrestling get a feel for how the other wrestler works. All that we see are suplexes, strikes, holds and finishers, but with no reasoning behind them. It’s as if they’re performing moves just for the sake of performing moves. I guess all those submission holds used don’t put much of a strain of the animation budget. Anyway, with Sakura achieving her original goal, she can go back to being a pop star, but she says that she wants to keep proving herself as a wrestler, much to the dismay of her best friend Elena and all of us who’re still watching the shit.
Nothing else of importance really happens till the final match so we’ll just go there. While Sakura is facing other wrestlers that are literally there to keep Sakura occupied for a couple episodes, a new mysterious masked wrestler named Blue Panther begins taking out other wrestlers until she gets a match with Sakura, demanding that she retire upon losing. It’s at this point where she unmasks and reveals herself to be Elena, Sakura best friend from Sweet Diva. Her plan is to force Sakura into retirement so she can join Sweet Diva again. I don’t know about you guys, but forcing someone to join a group through beating them in a wrestling match does not sound like the healthiest thing for a relationship, and it sounds like something that could come from the WWE storyline, and that’s not a good thing, cause WWE sucks. They have their match and it’s easily the best match from the entire show, actually showing ring psychology within the match. Unfortunately, the main problem with this match is with the animation. Overall the animation of the show is rather inconsistent, but the movement in this match especially is just downright shoddy and makes some of the moves shown looks unintentionally hilarious. Sakura took a damn Tombstone Piledriver (move where the opponent's head is driven into mat) and a second later her body started to twist and contort out of nowhere. The use of CGI on the crowd was also terrible and the crowd was shown on-screen for way too long, making the poor use of CGI even more obvious. This show also pulls one of the worst things I’ve ever seen in an anime: they have Sakura pinned to a near-fall, but rather than showing Sakura kick out, they turn to a shot of the lights above the ring, and we hear some guy in the crowd say “Wow, that was close”. It’s times like like where I just want to facepalm in frustration with how shit like this is given a pass.
The match ends with Sakura winning the match. Elena is left heartbroken and pleads her friend to come back to Sweet Diva. The crowd chimes in with their opinion as well, oddly enough, and most say they want to see Sakura back in the idol group, despite cheering her for the last 11 episodes for pursuing her goals of wrestling. Eventually Mariko Toujou comes in and says that both Sakura and Elena can continue wrestling and be pop idols if they can handle it. Who’s Mariko? We’ll get so her soon enough. The show ends with Sakura and Elena all dressed up in their idol gear, performing in front of the wrestling crowd, completely no-selling injuries that they sustained previously in their match. Hoo-ray, the end. Now after all of this I can easily tell you that this was one of the worst stories I have even seen played out in 12 episodes, but that’s not the only horrible thing about this steaming pile of horseshit.
The characters, oh my God! Despite the amount of characters in this show, not one manages to stand out as even average! Sakura, despite being the most significant character, is also one of the saddest excuses for a main character I’ve ever seen. I’d call her the John Cena of the show, but at least John Cena has a personality. Throughout the entire show she struggles in every match, either winning by the skin of her teeth, or being dominated throughout the match. She wants to become the strongest and prove herself, but never once changes or has her morals challenged. They could have if say, they had her reflect on her losses, but they never even try that because the staff are too busy prioritising crotch-shots over character development.
Elena is next up on the platform of shame. This girl is both Sakura’s best friend and rival, always coming close to beating Sakura, but never beating her in anything. She is obviously jealous of Sakura’s accomplishments, bra size and overall success. Unfortunately she always maintains her place throughout the show, ending up one-dimensional. One thing I want to know though, how the fuck is this girl able to challenge and almost beat Sakura despite having barely any proper training over the duration of the show, compared to Sakura, who needed to train her boy up for 3 months before even getting a match?
Rio Kazama-You know what? Fuck this bitch. She doesn’t matter at all to the overall story. She’s just a bitchy wrestler with a cocky attitude and no ass. NO ASS! Alright next character is Moe. Moe is a high school freshman who’s the granddaughter of a former wrestler and who was inspired to start wrestling through watching Sakura. This girl is only important for one episode where she faces Sakura purely to keep the show going. She’s easily replaceable and her only memorable act in the entire show was motorboating the main character.
And then, there was Mariko “Jackal” Toujou. This woman happens to be the world champion, and yet, she doesn’t matter at all when it comes to the story. She faces Sakura in the second half of the show because her original opponent was injured, but if you had replaced this woman with some random wrestler, the show wouldn’t have changed at all. She’s just another pair of tits to get off to when you get bored of Sakura. But if there is one thing that I hate about her, more than any other character on the fucking show, it’s that quote that I put at the start of the review. She called the match between Sakura and Elena the finest form of entertainment in the whole world. She just shitted on the entire world of professional wrestling this that one sentence. I know that it shouldn’t be taken seriously but fuck it: Fuck off Mariko! You wish you had as much depth as your cleavage does! Fuck you and this show, bitch!
Earlier on I talked about how shit the animation was whilst explain the “plot” (and I use that term lightly here) of this shit show. But it needs to be said again: THIS SHOW LOOKS LIKE SHIT! The art style is generic as all hell, with nearly every character having a similar design and no cup size below C (if we exclude the high school girl, no cup size below D). This show also has only two proper locations; the gym and the wrestling ring. This show is so devoid of artistic freedom that even at 12 episodes I’m surprised at how long it went for. Character movement is just garbage, and when they aren’t showing proper movement, they’re showing close-ups, screen shots, and reused footage, and it is painful to watch. The fan-service. Is fucking painful. To everyone who likes shows like this because of the ecchi elements in place, if you removed the close-ups of female anatomy from this show it would be very bland. That’s what this show was, even with the fan-service, because it fails at using ecchi well at all. In fact, with the kind of shots that were used repeatedly within the show, it’s more disturbing than erotic at all. Seeing Sakura’s vagina whilst during a submission for the umptieth time is not only tiring, it’s just sad.
If there was anything that I would say was positive from this show, it would have to be the opening and ending themes. Not the overall OP and ED; those shit videos were piss breaks. But the themes on their own fits with the idol part of the show, and were at least decent to listen to. I wouldn’t say that I didn’t skip them every time, but they didn’t further hinder the show. Overall the soundtrack was a dud, with no song standing out except for one that sounded like a rip-off of the battle theme from the original Pokemon games. In my opinion, no song meshed well with any of the scenes in the show. Voice-acting wise, well what can I say? Half the time the characters were just moaning and screaming; it was just annoying. I guess I’d say the voice of Sakura did the best, since she screamed more than anyone else, but then again I screamed just as much from just watching this piece of trash anime.
This show is literally one of the worst anime that I have ever layed my eyes on. It tries to make professional wrestling look like a noble and rigorous sport, whilst cutting to a muff shot every 10 seconds. It puts pandering shit fests like Queen’s Blade and Sekirei to shame. The makers of this disturbing fan-service filled and generic as fuck “you-can-do-it” crapfest should have changed the name from Wanna Be the Strongest in the World, to Wanna Be the Worst in the World, because this show is deserving of a title like that. The entire existence of the show was an elaborate scheme made to animate bouncing boobies and bulging coochies whilst under the extremely thinly-veiled disguise of telling a story, and an awful one at that. The plot was pure garbage. Calling the cast of this show characters would be giving them too much credit. This is a failure in every possible sense of the word. If you want a proper sports drama, check out something like Hajime no Ippo. If you want proper use of ecchi in a story, I’d recommend Prison School. If you just want to see scantily-clad animated women play with each other, even Keijo and some hentai shows would be better than this pile of garbage.
Sekai de Ichiban Tsuyoku Naritai (or SekaTsuyo for short) is another inspiring sports show, but cleverly disguised as a trashy ecchi show about girls getting close and personal. This season has seen several of these, like the new season of Hajime no Ippo or Yowamushi Pedal which gives the viewer anime's take on competitive cycling.
The story's focus is largely on the main character, Hagiwara Sakura and the challenges facing her each episode. Most of the time it flows smoothly but the pacing of the actual fights range from okay to poor. The fights don't offer much in the way of surprises and feel too staged
and forced, especially when the patterns start to repeat and you begin to notice that the fighters seem to take turns beating on each other. The choreography itself is decent, the moves are well done and given a sense of impact, but the submission holds tend to drag out and the cries of pain from the voice actresses become grating and even embarrassing to listen to. The art shares this problem, as the crotch shots, breast shots and the outfits in general aren't very pleasant to look at - it feels like the artists featured all that just to classify the show as ecchi which is doesn't exactly feel like.
The songs used in the opening and ending, as well as the background music is forgettable but not bad. It's standard with a hint of blandness, just enough to not have anything to say about it. As far as voice acting goes the female ones show a huge amount of skill with their in-fight cries and screams, which sound more painful than erotic (I suspect that was the intended effect.)
Sakura is much like the generic sports anime protagonist: ambitious and enthusiastic, though she has a few moments that set her apart from the rest. While all of those protagonists face setbacks in one form or another, Sakura's struggle is painful, brutal and supremely captivating. Viewers watch her struggle and achieve nothing and fall further each time and it's a reminder that real life isn't as forgiving as anime. It was a fresh viewing experience, and while it was frustrating and even agonizing to watch her, I'm glad that I did. Her struggle was noble and the fruits of her labor were infinitely sweet.
Sakura's struggle is like any other, and that's fine. Watching her is inspiring, even while seeing her fall you root for her and when she rises you cheer with the crowd. While this isn't an exceptional anime that should be among to top of this season, it's good entertainment and one of the few animes about wrestling.
Is It Yuri?
With many women comes much speculation. Sadly, there's not much to go on so I would not recommend it for the yuri factor alone.