There's probably a big diff between "quality" and "thirst quencher" and I'm gonna have to say YOI - definitive - belongs to the latter. I don't see how this should be rated so high otherwise.
Viktor indeed threw/temporarily stopped his career for Yuuri but that doesn't point to how big-hearted/grand act/in love he is with the guy (if in the first place they ever showed Viktor suffering from having withdrawn temporarily from his career). Viktor along with Phichit are simple creatures who take delight in life -- and this if anything really illustrated the fact for me.
Please don't be quick to throw story artistry away? Spoilers - if Yuuri's and Viktor's narration in ep 1 and ep 10 respectively didn't show you how dirt poor the production team treats storytelling as an art I don't know what might. They are very literally telling you word for word what is happening in their story. It's so blatant you can even miss the fact you're being spoonfed. They don't care about storytelling. YOI just wants to show you how enjoyable and recreational life can be. Viktor can probably just narrate "And that's how I met the Japanese beauty, Katsuki Yuuri, and came to be engaged with him. Love, life and peace." and fandom will still be screaming their lungs out w/o prior context. What...
As some of the reviewers have put it, Yuuri's character is a joke. A complete mess. Know why? He was only born to fulfill the role of guy lover. Have we ever heard of what he thinks about ice skating w/o bringing Viktor not even seconds into his monologue? You can be influenced, sure, but if *every* monologue winds up being about Viktor I think we've got another problem coming...
The only thing worthy of praise is how we're missing Yuuri's actual position in the story - which we automatically assume we aren't, bc he's the protag and anything he sees is by default true. We're misled into thinking he's a rather lousy and cowardly skater but each and every ep reveals otherwise. He's got decent to great skills and if ep 10 revealed anything he's not the persona that's been presented to us on screen. Though that still doesn't make his characterization any less confusing (or maybe he just isn't thinking about anything at all) except accepting love and life as it comes? Really, YOI is ultra bland. If you walk the streets today or sit in a cafe you can see the same thing (and that's everything) that's happening in YOI. People, connections, fun, laughter.
It can appear to be great on the surface for portraying rl well but you guys are losing a lot of focus. Character development, plot, anguish with the sports -- there's absolutely nothing going on in YOI other than a bunch of ppl getting to enjoy their lives. It's no different from Tamako Market, Flying Witch etc in genre and you have to ask me, YOI can't even pass for a love story, not bc it doesn't have love but it's not a /story/. You don't just slap two people together and then skim right to the end saying they're in love before we have the chance to watch it happen.
For an ice skating show the routines are gorgeous eh? (lmao) How many times has Yuuri repeated his Eros routine now? Are they, idk, skating or flapping their arms? The frames, oh man. Do these athletes even care about ice skating beyond a recreation and a naive, selfish pursuit of getting to enjoy life?
YOI's good enough as a slightly above mediocre, slice of life about inherently nothing (maybe lofty starlit adventures?). No it's not even about ice skating, it's about how the athletes as people /make use/ of ice skating. I think Ginban Kaleidoscope had a better focus on ice skating and it's main theme is a /love story/.
So... guys, please stop. Sword Art Online, Kimi no Na wa, now this. You guys are really... (coddles forehead with hand)
Yes watch it, watch YOI if you want bc it can bring you up in a bad mood (humans are so easy to get entertained) but for the love of, don't go around throwing it like some monumental trophy bc facts:
- No. 6 did the first gay anime trope
- Samurai Flamenco had fun fucking with itself but had a better proposal that wasn't even intentionally gay (perspective of the guy proposing)
- Just go watch Ginban if you're thirsty for ice skating
- Watch any yaoi if you want actually, they can be unexpectedly deep (tho dramatic) for all they're worth
You know ppl applaud that Viktor and Yuuri are met with no resistance but I'd rather say that's the problem. Are they not gonna be met with resistance in the real world? The problem with YOI is that it pulls all these moves, have Viktor stop his career or be met with relative non-prejudice and these acts invoke a phenomenal reaction from fandom bc of the implied meaning.
A meaning which shld only come to fruition after you've worked hard for the outcome. YOI has done nothing but skim over /any and everything/ and you get happy just from a single line narrated by a character. Next episode they're gonna goof around again and if Viktor just says "And we got married!" I think fandom is gonna spontaneously combust.
YOI is almost like a fanfiction at this point -- not because it's so fantastic and unreal but wish fulfillment. Fandom is so thirsty they'll probably eat anything up. I can see what YOI's good for, but fandom has to realize they're pushing their expectations onto this show and making it sound 100x better than it really is.
Bafflingggg. I won't ever agree, letting Kiseijuu or the likes sit in the same rank at this.