Among the seaside town of Izu's ocean waves and rays of shining sun, Iori Kitahara is just beginning his freshman year at Izu University. As he moves into his uncle's scuba diving shop, Grand Blue, he eagerly anticipates his dream college life, filled with beautiful girls and good friends.
But things don't exactly go according to plan. Upon entering the shop, he encounters a group of rowdy, naked upperclassmen, who immediately coerce him into participating in their alcoholic activities. Though unwilling at first, Iori quickly gives in and becomes the heart and soul of the party. Unfortunately, this earns him the scorn of his cousin, Chisa Kotegawa, who walks in at precisely the wrong time. Undeterred, Iori still vows to realize his ideal college life, but will things go according to plan this time, or will his situation take yet another dive?
#1: "Konpeki no Alfine ~Nikenme ni Karaoke ni Haitta Oretachi no Tension Super MAX ver.~ (紺碧のアル・フィーネ ～二軒目にカラオケに入った俺たちのテンションスーパーMAXver.～)" by Izu no Kaze (伊豆乃風) #2: "Konpeki no Alpine ~Kaya Mizuki ver.~" by Kaya Mizuki (ep 11) [Iori Kitahara (Yuuma Uchida), Kouhei Imamura (Ryouhei Kimura), Shinji Tokita (Hiroki Yasumoto), Ryuujirou Kotobuki (Kazuyuki Konishi)] (eps 1-10)
College life is a bit different from high school. For those who don’t know, it’s like venturing into a society where some people live by the rules and others makes them. To me, Grand Blue came as a show that explored a carefree life while mixing in adult humor, diving elements, and drinking shenanigans. It’s one of those shows that is hard to not laugh your ass off once you realized what you’re in for.
Based on the manga written by Kenji Inoue, Grand Blue stands out more as a modern slice of life that adheres to a young adult cultural society. Here, we meet a
guy named Iori Kithara who starts his new life as a college student on the Izu Peninsula. His place of residence happens to be a diving shop known as “Grand Blue” and thus where daily life adventure begins. Now, I should say right off the bat that a show like this relies on stereotypical humor with plenty of jokes in between. If you’re not ready for that, just turn back now.
Grand Blue’s storytelling mainly chronicles the daily life adventures of Iori although plenty of other characters are featured aside him. The main cast consists of diving club, also known as the “Peek-a-Boo”. He meets others including his cousin Chisa, Nanaka, Kouhei, Azusa, Toshio, and Kotobuki. Among this group, the male cast seems more like they are in love with drinking more than diving. The first episode immediately sets off the humor with the nakedness and adult jokes from the very start as we meet the core members. That is to say, Iori himself also lacks common sense when he attends his first day at college while being half naked. Judging from just this impression, it should be easy to recognize that the show love to make fun of its characters. It uses stereotypes that makes fun of college life such as young adults drinking and partying. Then, there’s meta-humor that plays on jokes with the nudity. It’s also self-aware being that it never attempts to disguise its humor. Certain characters are very aware of their actions regardless of consequences and this often sets off the wrath of others such as Chisa.
For the main female cast, it consists of a colorful group with a diverse range of personalities. The most level-headed person in the show is Chisa who takes many things in life seriously. She also loves diving and geniuely enjoys the feelings of being in the azure ocean. She’s like the anti-Peek-a-boo member in the show as she can’t tolerate being embarrassed. Because of this, there’s often a clash between her and Iori as the two gets into compromising positions. The end result is often Iori taking the blow and Chisa face palming herself. However, it’s also noticeable that she does care about Iori especially during brief flashbacks before them. Often times, I guess you could say that she misses her childhood with him and reliving those moments brings a peace in her mind. Then, we have Nanaka who seems to play the role of an older sister type for the main cast although at the same time, she also has an unhealthy infatuation towards Chisa. It’s the type of humor that makes fun of siblings but in a sarcastic way. Azusa is the senior student who behaves much more like the guys in the show. Her bisexuality is hinted at many times and often makes sexual jokes at others, especially Iori. Last but not least is Aina, a freshman who is much shyer compared to the others. She does go by another persona early in the series so watching her sometimes may remind you just how different her two personalities are.
Between the guys, a main selling point in the show is the character chemistry. Regardless whether you like it or not, there’s an abundance amount of humor when the guys interact with each other and it often comes off as absurd humor. The most prominent is between Iori and Kouhei. They are often observant but says things that may be interpreted in the wrong way. They often get into trouble with the women in the show too given their actions that disregards common sense. The two also gets into many bickering moments. Early in the series, the series also makes fun of the guys with porn jokes. And let’s not forget about the drinking. Pretty every male character in the series loves to drink whether it’s alcohol, beer, vodka, wine, or whiskey. As you may expect from action that results in consequences, the guys behave like drunks while stripping naked and causing questionable scenes. The series pokes fun at this type of adult humor by covering their private body parts with black censored circles. It’s the type of self-aware humor that you’ll witness quite often.
So now what? Is this series just a giant ball of meaningless humor? Or is it something more deceptive that people misunderstands? To me, Grand Blue stands out as a show that deals with adult gimmicks and stereotypes but makes it into a humorous flick. It seems like a popcorn entertainment and you’re not wrong if it feels like the story went nowhere in the end. However, the shows knows how it operates and inserts every joke with a clear intention. The guys in the series acts bold and behaves in ways that wild college students do. The girls are slightly mild but it doesn’t detract them from getting into the party on occasions. There’s a lot of running gags with the drinking jokes, nakedness, and misunderstandings. It’s what the series uses to sell its humor. If you’re in it for actual diving, there are some moments too with info dumps. Don’t expect this like a relaxing slice of life as it’s far too hyperactive to be considered as such though. Watch this for the pure entertainment and forget common logic. That way, you’ll grow to love Grand Blue.
Zero-G has honestly been an unimpressive studio. Their lineup consists of shows that I hardly see anyone talks about these days (Battery, Dorei-kun the Animation, Dive!!). Their production quality is hardly stellar either. Thankfully, they managed to step up to the plate and capture the magic for this show. It deserved a glorious quality and got treated such way with the beach setting, aquatic ocean, and sunny atmosphere. Character designs also feels real with the cast looking like they are college students (although Aina sometimes makes me question this) Fan service is literally in every episode but they take the extreme during party scenes and drinking segments. Finally, I love the way characters reacts that pushes the envelope to the extreme. Iori and Kouhei are prime examples of this while others such as Chisa and Nanaka also have their own moments. Expressions of shock, anger, and confusion is shown right to your face in ridiculous ways. Thanks to the talented voice cast, it brings the best out of those moments. The OP song also adapts a playful feel to showcase the themes of the show. The ED theme song makes fun of pop culture such as karaoke that’s so fun to sing along with.
As a fan of the manga, I think Grand Blue established itself as a self-aware humorous showstopper. Taking the risk of glorifying its humor made this show look like a joke at first glance. However, once you get sucked into Grand Blue’s themes, you’ll find love with this show. From the adult humor to the numerous character gags, it’s an anime that plays with itself. It’s a Summer sensation.
Every season of anime always has that one show. You know the one. From the start it receives constant praise and love by the masses, unrelenting in their desire to make their short-lived adoration known to any that will hear. For weeks it leads the figurative hype-train that has every seasonal watcher on board in anticipation to see where it ends up. The show you stay up late at night each week just to catch the latest episode on Kis-Crunchyroll.com. While every other show with potential may and probably will squander around the half-way point, this show – THIS SHOW – is the only one
to matter, for it holds the embodiment of why weeaboos traded their social life to solely watch Japanese cartoons.
Newsflash: This ain’t it chief.
To be honest, this season as a whole has been remarkably unremarkable given the obvious trends that take place in the anime community. Although it may not be so surprising given that the season prior was coined by many as ‘The Greatest Season of Anime’, even the most popular shows airing currently have made little more than a murmur throughout their runtime. Attack on Titan, Overlord, the “final” season of Gintama, all well-known series that have all fallen silent amongst the public. But when it comes to new series airing, Grand Blue had to have been a main attraction; based on one of the most popular manga serialized today that features Shinji Takamatsu as director – the same director for successful comedies School Rumble and Daily Lives of High School Boys. Yet… something’s seriously off about this show, and since it seems to have slapped the tactfulness out of me, I’m just gonna go ahead and say it: This show fucking blows.
I was planning to say something along the lines of “Let’s dive into this”, but whilst being the most cliché cringe-inducing pun I could have possibly made, there’s not very much at all to “dive” into here. Grand Blue follows 20-year-old Iori Kitahara who has moved to his uncle’s seaside town for college, where he is almost immediately roped into joining a male-dominated diving club. But if you thought this show was about diving, it’s a trap! Instead the club activities more or less revolve around drinking, stripping and getting hammered. Essentially, it is a comedy anime focused on the college life so a basic plot such as this is harmless so long as the comedy hits its mark. However, that simply is not the case. Instead Grand Blue comes off as an American frat house flick turned into a gag anime, except with nearly all the effort sucked out.
Now I understand that comedy in general is heavily subjective so what personally may not land well with me could very well come off as a massive hit to someone else. Nevertheless, I have so many issues with how the show handles humour. One of the first instances of this come from the running joke where every other character tries tricking Iori into getting drunk. Conceptually, this does not strike me as humorous, but the ridiculous ways this is tried alongside dysmorphic character faces utilized certainly add to the punchline and made me laugh the first few times. But a cardinal problem with Grand Blue is that a joke which becomes par runs the risk of growing dull, and while using different scenarios can keep things fresh, Grand Blue instead decides to drive them into the ground as fast as possible. Sure, the joke earned a few chuckles the first couple times, but then they use it once more, and again, and again… and again. Numerous times the overabundance of these quips was akin to beating a dead horse, and if at that point it does not feel overdone then I just do not know what to say. Clearly Grand Blue is a comedy show that lends itself to multiple running gags throughout the 12 episodes, but the way they are used is what inevitably ceases the series to deliver the same results each time on viewers like myself.
Another issue with the comedy presented here more often than not is the timing. Timing is obviously a key factor for basically any form of comedy, especially with the kind of jokes Grand Blue exploits that rely heavily on the punchline. Yet here poor timing is so apparent that it comes off almost amateurish by the staff. Maybe this is a limitation when adapting the source material. I have not read the manga, but due to anime being… animated, it limits the way one can interpret a scene compared to a series of still pictures; the anime ends up much more restricting on the imagination. The punchlines themselves are also somewhat confusing at first if you had high expectations of Grand Blue without having read the manga. The series seems to treat comedy at a fairly lowbrow level where majority of the time punchlines were aimed between the more innocent characters being coerced or embarrassed by other club members. Sure, lowbrow humour can be funny and even I find it hilarious sometimes, but considering this is also a light-hearted comedy, makes Grand Blue’s task of making someone like myself laugh incredulously difficult. What also works in their disfavour are the more heartfelt moments mainly centred around Iori gaining appreciation for diving as a whole. These moments COULD have been useful as far as getting better invested in his character, except there is one serious problem: he has no character. You should not expect much in the way of development or characterization presented as there are only a handful of character worth remembering just to remember the plot meanwhile everyone else, despite their own “plot” are flat as a pancake. Again, due to Grand Blue being primarily comedy, there is barely any expectations as far as the narrative or characters go, yet the show continues to spread itself thin that I, as a viewer, am left with barely anything to truly grasp onto. Maybe I’m just an old fag.
Perhaps the key problem I have with Grand Blue is not with the comedy or even the characters, but the subject matter. There has been an increasing amount of anime set in higher education as of late, each with their own take on a core aspect of college life. But before Grand Blue I had never been exposed to one that focuses primarily on the parts where the main characters get blasted off one’s face, and after watching this, it really does makes sense why. As a student myself I can tell you with assurance that there is not much fun getting shit-faced and even then, it does not last long. To those reading this that have experienced a hangover probably understand this most and, perhaps more importantly, the after-effects. Headaches, drowsiness, poor concentration and nausea are just a mere few of the symptoms that coincidentally are also felt when watching these moments every week. One of the most common appraisals about Grand Blue is how relatable the show is. I’m sorry but the main aspects that are relatable to real life here are not things that I would be celebrating as much and like those who have had poor hangovers, is something I would rather forget about. Although when it comes to alcohol in Grand Blue, there is nothing more depressing than seeing each episode open with a disclaimer about legal alcohol usage. Now, they were probably necessary to even have the series airing in the first place but way to present the exact opposite of comedy at the beginning of each episode. Of course nothing is mentioned about the nudity seemingly ever-present here; I see Japan has their priorities straight here.
Speaking of; yes, I am a straight cis-male. I’m not ashamed. I have no interest in the male nudity displayed in Grand Blue, but holy hell do they have the least creative way of censoring dicks. As aforementioned I have not read the manga, so I do not know how scenes were drawn but it is such a lazy way of going about it, though it does match the effort that arguably went to the overall visuals of Grand Blue. It looks absolutely lacklustre. Below average animation for practically every scene. Poor designs, even for the male supporting cast (no homo). This is not a series to watch for its technical appeal, because there practically is none. However, I find this fact to somehow work in its favour as far as the entertainment goes. Seeing comedic scenes with laughable animation effects certainly has a charm to it; perhaps a “so bad it’s good” quality, but not enough to warrant slogging through it all. Even fanservice for the male demographic was at a minimum. As far as the sound, both the soundtrack and voice acting are very forgettable. The opening and endings, whilst memorable, I personally found cringeworthy. Never will I not skip either if they ever happen to come up on a playlist. Just listen to these lyrics:
♫♫ Be passionate my friend
Shine bright with the sun
Dive into the blue sky
And let summer take it all ♫♫
And that is all there is to say about Grand Blue. It’s clear that not many people will agree with my statements as it appears to be a strong fan-favourite of whatever is left of the community still interested in seasonal anime. If you like it then I’m glad you enjoyed it, but there’s probably better comedies this season. Watch them; I thought this sucked. Grand Blue was the equivalent of a grand disaster in my eyes and stands a reminder that “in every age, in every place, the taste of weeaboos remain the same.” I guess I’m just not a fan of watching something akin to what the Fairy Tail guild would be like when knocked off their rocker. Anyways thank you to everyone who read my review. Be sure to leave a helpful if you liked-hell even if you disliked I’ll still take a helpful! Leave a comment for what I should review next. 99% unlikely to actually do it but who knows. Au revoir.
"In Japan, the color blue signifies youth, a time of excitement and infinite possibilities"
Hello everyone , this is my review of funniest show of this season and one of the best gag comedy i had ever seen in anime ..
so Lets begin
Imagine what you expect when you going to college, we develop a lot of preconceptions about what it would be like i mean New places, new friends, maybe a new girlfriend. Go to some parties, maybe find somewhere I felt like I could really fit in and all that wonderful dreamy thought. Well our main protagonist Imagination is no different than an average student
who just entering the college.
After graduating high school, Iori moves to Izu, on the coast, to go to college for mechanical engineering. “I’ll put all my effort into having the best college life possible!” he vows. “I’m going to meet cute girls, fall in love, and enjoy the pinnacle of youth with good friends!”
He moves in with his uncle and, more importantly, his two beautiful cousins: motherly, long-haired Nanaka and tomboyish, short-haired Chisa. All of them work at the uncle’s dive shop, the Grand Blue; unfortunately, so do Tokita and Kotobuki, macho dive bums who pressure Iori into joining the diving club even though he can’t swim. Alas, Iori soon finds himself roped into their social circle, partying with a bunch of goofy jocks who just want to get naked and play all-male drinking games. Will Iori get to enjoy a cool campus life? Will he find love? Will the diving club ever actually get in the water?
Well thats for the introduction part which sounds like an average college based anime
or IS IT!, so let examine in our further review.
Most of the time we see gag anime fail to deliver a proper story line and mostly involved in delivering some random funny events and scenes.
Well Grand Blue is kind of done a decent job in constructing a story line. Sure we can say that its not a story based anime .However, Grand Blue does deserve credit in the sense that it doesn't completely devolve into comedy, as most events take place in a ocean setting, staying true to the foundation that it lay down. The Episodes are also loosely tied together, meaning that there is some degree of continuation. But in all we can say that its main purpose is to make audience laugh.
Art, Animation and sound:(9/10)
Art is beautiful considering how they have utilize the beauty of locations including underwater and seasore and present it in a beautiful and artistic way. Animation is great, studio done a decent job in adapting manga considering manga artstyle is already top class we sure expect in the hands of a decent studio anime is pleasant to watch.
There are some part i like to focus on which Grand Blue done a tremendous job that is adapting face expression with the scenes. Grand Blue Dreaming is a stunning treasure trove of reaction faces. With influences from hot-blooded fighting anime, horror movie framing, and direct references to other franchises, like this Great Teacher Onizuka and that Evil sarcastic Face which taken from Attack on Titans.
OP and ending is pleasant and beautiful as well as some underwater scenes are eyecatching.
It also done a great job in sound department including beautiful opening and ending sound. There are no characters who unnecessarily shouting everywhere and trying to make audience laugh .Voice actors done excellent job in providing tone which goes exceptionally well with the scene
Characters are unique and excellent and each have there own funnier side perfectly well fitted for such gags Anime.
We can see from absolute scumbags to a hot and weird otaku , from a shy tomboyish waifu material girl who has its own sadist side to a lewd Onee san including Airheads and some trouble some senpais.
Grand Blue has all to offer what is necessary for a gag anime, characters range from lovable bastards like club senpai Tokki and Bukki to absolute scumbags, with Iori somewhere in the middle. He has a veneer of respectability that gets shattered the moment he takes a sip of beer. Also our fellow dorks like good-looking but skeevy anime fan Kohei (“Why isn’t there a club full of beautiful high school girls to be my harem?”)
The female character are more kind of average than you might expect from this particular strain of comedy, with the exception of Nanaka, who is pretty one note with the unpredictable and Lewd Azusa. Chisa and Aina for me is kind of okay serving as a balance in between all these crazy characters.
So Whats Lacking:
Well if you see the Manga, its clearly one of the best comedy manga ever made. For anime i feel it kind of fail to adapt the proper pacing of the Anime and how to give Focus on some particular scene. We can see same kind of thing with some famous anime like Food Wars (after 1st season) and Tokyo Ghoul. On some scenes and some part of the story it feel bit rushed which makes viewers who already familiar with manga kind of disappointed. Other than that i dont find anything which are lacklustre in the Anime.
The other element that might not work for everyone is all the nudity and fanservice. The most explicit nudity actually comes from the boys in the club, who tend to strip when they get drunk.
The women, however, in their skintight wetsuits, bikinis, or the occasional glimpse of underwear, are clearly supposed to be titillating.
Well i can say that its not for everyone who dont feel comfortable in such thing like nudity and drinkin
Grand Blue is fundamentally a frat house farce in the vein of something like American Pie or The Hangover in anime version. Its comedy definitely has lot of consistency when it comes to make people laugh. If you want a show who you can watch with your friends with enjoyment and laugh this show deliver all the things you needed.
Funny events timing is impeccable, making great use of situations, and even manages to make repeating the same punchline funnier the second time.
Overall its pretty good and satisfying show and definitely one of the best gag anime ever made also the funniest one but again you’ll have to really love booze jokes, funny faces, and gags about guys being caught naked with little censorship marks obscuring their junk.
Entertaining Comedy?✓ Men who can't help but get drunk and strip?✓ Awkward Virgin friends?✓ Misunderstandings?✓
Grand Blue is one of the funniest anime I have seen in a while. In a full on comedy anime, a plot is probably one of the least important aspects. To me, a comedy anime is all about the enjoyable characters and overall entertainment. And Grand Blue has all of those.
Like most comedy anime, it operates with a very basic story- a college freshman being all excited to have a great college life.
However, it doesn't go as planned when he's forced to join a "diving club", in which the members drink
and strip more than dive (there still is diving I assure you). Yes, it's pretty ridiculous already, but it gets even better as the show progresses and more characters get introduced.
The characters are the life of any comedy anime. Without fun, fitting characters, a comedy anime just won't be the same. It doesn't matter to me if they seem slightly generic, as long as they show some personality and entertain.
Grand Blue has a good variety of different personalities which compliment each other perfectly to create hilarious exchanges. Whether it is a dumb, over the top MC, or an otaku "ikemen", or awkward virgin friends, or men (and women) who couldn't care less about getting drunk and stripping in public, Grand Blue has a good variety to keep the entertainment going.
The voice acting is also top notch, and paired with some incredible facial expressions, all the characters are funny in their own right. Honestly, the facial expressions are some of the most hilarious ones I've seen since Prison School.
There are many comedy anime out there which can have some funny episodes while the rest are a hit-and-miss. Grand Blue, however is very consistent in that regard. Honestly, comedy will always be a subjective genre. Grand Blue might not be for some, but those who enjoy a rather over-the-top comedy anime should definitely give this a shot.