Gyon is a short king who’s tired of getting pushed around by the big boys. Actually, no one pushes him around, it’s all in his head. But can you blame him? After a lifetime of getting teased by and roughhousing with his enormous older brothers, he has developed a bit of a bias. And it doesn’t help when on his first day of high school he meets up with the tallest first year ever. It’s going to be alright though because Gyon just found out that even the little guys can make a big difference in rugby and he is psyched about joining Jinko’s perpetually losing team!
You know, there are certain sports I don’t mind watching. Football for instance (or soccer if you prefer) and hockey (duh). But I never really got into rugby. Nothing against it really it’s just that I never really bothered to learn the rules so I could never really figure out what was going on out there.
I can’t say there’s anything particularly special about All Out!! (Spoiler: this is going to be a running theme through this review). The production was in all aspects perfectly competent and pretty much what you would expect of a sports anime with a decent budget. It’s almost impressive how little I have to say about it.
I guess the one thing that occasionally stood out is the character designs. You had some sweet anime hair going on with characters like Sekizan and Ise and some weird alien eyes on Zanba. But even the relatively normal characters are drawn in this unusual exaggerated almost Bara shoujo style, with huge eyelashes and accentuated hourglass figures as well as massive muscles and square jawlines. They also blush all the time. I have a feeling this may be hit or miss with fans but it did give the visuals some personality at least.
This was important for me. I watched Hinomaru Sumo not that long ago and if it wasn’t for that one aspect, I could easily have mistaken one show for the other.
You know every time I start a Sports anime I go through the exact same mental ritual. In the first five minutes, I go “oh wow this is fun”. Then we usually meet the loud genki character and my suspicions flared up. After an episode, and every single trope in the playbook, I think to myself “all sports anime are the same”.
And they kind of are. I guess Yuri and Free broke the mould a bit by being dramas instead but even the fantastic Haikyuu still follows the same basic tropes and narrative structure most sports anime do. By now I can pretty much predict which characters will drop out, which will have a falling out with the team, who is going to get injured and which games they will win or lose within the first three episodes or so.
And All Out!! Was no exception. I had it sussed more or less from the start. I can’t say anything surprised me much.
There’s also a third thought that comes to me once I’ve established it is, in fact, a Sports!! Anime. And that’s: “I really like sports anime”! And All Out!! Was no exception.
I won’t lie. There’s nothing that special about the show. But it’s got the fundamentals down (that’s sports talk!) It did what I expected it to do in a pleasant entertaining way. I want to call it junk food, you know tasty but ultimately devoid of substance except eating too much junk food makes you nauseous and sick. It’s more like celery if you happen to really like celery. There’s not much to it but you can pretty much mindlessly consume it forever!
Well, that’s not fair, there is one thing unique to All Out!! It’s about rugby. That’s rather unusual. Not American football, actual rugby which I now know is not the same thing. (Don’t quiz me) I figure that for the 5 hardcore rugby and anime fans out there, this show will fill a very niche slot. As for me. I have never watched an actual game of rugby. And I doubt I will. But for some reason, the game episodes in All Out!! were some of the most interesting I’ve ever watched. Usually, the games I Sports anime are fine for me but I like the training and fallout more. When a game starts to drag on for multiple episodes, I get impatient or lose interest. But not this time. For once I was eagerly awaiting the next match and slightly disappointed when they were over. I can’t explain why maybe I just like rugby? You learn something every day!
So there you have it. Unless you’re a fan of rugby specifically or classic non-sexy sports anime in general, you can probably skip All Out!! For my part, I’m glad I saw it and enjoyed every second.
Favourite character: Yumie-chan!
What this anime taught me: goal/point/score/unit in rugby is called a try so when a person scores, their teammates say “nice try” as congratulations which is sort of the opposite of what that expression usually man’s and that made me happy.
“Write Drunk; Edit Sober.”
Suggested drink: Mudslide!
- Every time Sekizan disciplines someone – take a sip
- Every time Iwashimizu gets flustered – take a sip
- Every time Sekizan gets crazy eyes – blink
- Every time anyone says “scrum” – take a sip
- Every time Ebumi gets mad – get some water
- Every time Gion gets called small – take a sip
- Every time there’s a super low tackle – stretch
- Every time we see young Sekizan – wonder what happened to his hair
- Every time anyone blushes – drink the water, you need to cool down
- Every time it rains – wow so much water in this drinking game
- Every time Mutsumi opens his eyes – gasp!