Welcome to the Ballroom: First Impressions

Never in my life did I ever think I’d watch an anime about Ballroom dancing. I mean, I said the same thing about figure skating but that’s another story. Seriously though, how do these mangakas entrance us with stories about subject matter that we initially have no interest in? Ballroom dancing is something I rarely even see nowadays. Somehow, this series has taken my attention hostage at gun point. I want to talk about why this anime has such a grasp on me.

ballroom-e-youkoso-01-26-640x360The story itself isn’t anything special but interesting none the less. Tatara, a high school student with no idea what he wants to do with his life(relatable?), finds himself following a girl from school to a dance studio. Tatara gets cornered by some bullies and the gets saved by a Professional dancer named Sengoku who is also an instructor for the studio. When he finds himself watching a tape of a competition that Sengoku took part in and won, Tatara finds himself wanting to be like Sengoku and even request to be his student. Sengoku was initially offended that someone who has never danced before asked him to mold them into a professional like him. Now, Sengoku sees the determination that Tatara has and even maybe some natural talent. With the correct guidance, Tatara could potentially be a star.

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So before I dive into this article I want to mention this again. Never in my life did I ever think I’d watch an anime about Ballroom dancing. I’m still amazed that I even put this in my top 3 most anticipated anime of this season. I can honestly say that anime has just made me very open minded. I am prepared to give any and everything a shot. If it’s bad, it’s bad. If it’s good, I may question myself a bit, BUT it’s good.

A good example of a show I watched with an open mind was Haikyu. Haikyu was my first real attempt at watching a sports anime but I’m so glad I did! The series has easily become one of my favorite anime but what made this series so easy to like? What captivated me? The studio behind it, Production I.G. Granted, Haikyu and Welcome to the Ballroom are Shonen series. They are made to pique my interest the way that they do but for them to hold my attention with something I had no interest in is no small task. Not only keep me interested but also educate me on what it’s all about. Truly amazing.

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Now, I didn’t bring up Haikyu just because it was about something I had little to no interest in but because it was created by the same studio as Welcome to the Ballroom. You will notice many similarities when you give it a watch(PLEASE DO). Production IG is a studio that has earned my respect and has even become part of my top 5 studios. Why are they so great? Because they know how to bring life to manga that can already stand on their own. They, like Bones, are a fans dream choice for a manga’s adaption to anime.

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What makes a great adaption? How does one bring life to a series that already comes off the pages before your eyes? Pick great voice actors that really put the passion behind the words of these characters. Tatara’s voice actor truly embodies the kind of person Tatara is at any point of this series. I look forward to seeing where this show goes so I can see how Tatara grows. I want to see if his VA can also show the confidence that Tatara will have or even pretend to have. Not only is Tatara a good example but anyone really. All of these characters almost seem to have been created around these voice actors. Another great thing this series shares with Haikyu.

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What I’ve noticed through the anime community is there are a few complaints about the art. For me, I didn’t think too much about it. I was never big on complaining about the proportions of a character especially if it is an action scene. Most complaints I am hearing/reading are with elongated parts of the characters. For example, their necks and legs BUT it is always great when a series can address this on their own as well. They must have their reasons or the mangaka who created this series. I never really took the time to look at the source material.

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I know this show isn’t going to be for everyone. I’m not expecting all of you to watch it. But I will say I am enjoying it so far. It’s always a new surprise every week. I’m happy to see that it’s going for a 24 episode run and I hope that it progresses well.  If you give it a chance, I’m more than willing to be the one person that’s watching this show amongst your friends so you have someone to talk about it with. Always available for ya buddy! Well, thank you so much for reading this article and let me know what you think in the comments below! Also would really appreciate it if you hit that like button to show me you enjoyed it.

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