Stop Watching Hanebado! Watch Haikyuu Instead!

Stop Watching Hanebado! Watch Haikyuu Instead!

I’ve tried so hard to get into this series. The first two episodes were… okay. So I decided to let it stack and binge. I heard all of these great things about episode 6 which then lead me to catch up. BOY were they right. It was a great episode. It reminded me what I came for and what I’ve been missing from sports anime: great animation, rivals, and passion. Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like we’ll get much of that from this series. The episode following after was just weak. It brought back all the things that I hated and made no character likable. Especially the main character. In this post, I’m going to try and persuade you to watch Haikyuu. I’ll put the gun away… no pressure.

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Animation

As much as everyone has talked about the art and animation for Hanebado, it’s really not that great. It’s a series that puts all it’s great animation in one or two scenes every few episodes. When they are actually playing badminton, it looks better than average but it truly doesn’t hold up against much other anime. Especially Haikyuu. Even on it’s worse days, Haikyuu will present a great looking game and bring life to all the moments off the court. MAYBE this series would be animated better if it was handled by an anime studio that works with many other sports anime. NOT the studio that made the really bad Berserk anime. I wonder who could do that? I can tell you, Production I.G. the studio that not only made Haikyuu but also animated Kuroko no Basket, Welcome to the Ballroom, and played parts in Ace of Diamonds and Prince of Tennis.

Explanation For The Rules of the Sport

One thing that people tend to overlook about sports anime is, they provide a great medium to explain the sport to its audience. The creator of Haikyuu, Haruichi Furudate, played volleyball in high school and wanted to get other people into the sport he loved so much. So while planning out his manga he made sure to find opportunities to teach the reader the game. This was then translated very well to the anime. Unfortunately, Hanebado doesn’t teach us much about the game. You can argue that there’s not much to learn or I can go research this myself but this is part of the overall formula of a good sports anime.

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Main Protagonist(s)

Okay, let’s take a moment and look at Ayano Hanesaki. Her story here is she was really fucking good at badminton and her mother was the National Badminton Champion 10 times. Mother sees Ayano lose, and then peaces out. Ayano doesn’t want to play anymore. She then returns because of “friendship” and she feels the need to destroy the person that made her lose not only a match but her mother. I’m sorry? What am I watching? Why does she look evil and bitchy? Like there’s just nothing very likable about this character. If her best friend wasn’t part of this series, I would’ve dropped on episode 1.

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Now Haikyuu, on the other hand, is fucking great. Hinata is a short guy who wants to be a volleyball player. Not only does he want to play volleyball but he wants to be the ace of the team. All of his life, he was told he was way too short to compete mid-air against the titans of the court. He faces a prodigy setter who has all the skill but no one on his team cares about winning half as much as he does. After Hinata loses to Kageyama, they find themselves a year later on the same teams. Together they become a secret weapon for Karasano High.

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Hinata and Kageyama not only have their own separate character development but development as a duo. They come to a breaking point fight and come back on the other side winning. Each has likable qualities from Hinata’s gullibleness and Kageyama’s awkwardness.

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Rivals

No matter how you look at it, the rivals of Hanebado are poorly developed and uninteresting. All the rivals just come off as catty evil characters. Nothing really to like at all and nothing to lead me, as the viewer, to believe they were even meant to be liked. Wait… maybe that’s the point? That’s what I thought after watching the episode when Kaoruko lost to Ayano BUT at the same time, it was just Ayano’s turn to be bitchy? I DON’T GET IT!

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Haikyuu, on the other hand, knows how to win you over with its rivals. Each rival is introduced in interesting ways and provide great first impressions. Nothing feels more rewarding than viewing the battles between protagonists and rivals to the friendship they build through mutual respect and competitiveness.

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Passion

Why was episode 6 of Hanebado so good? Well, it could possibly be that, it actually felt like a true sports anime? Passion folks. That’s what Hanebado was missing. You see a bit of it at the beginning of the series from Aragaki but not quite like this. Izumi put her all into that final match and it was expressed fully in this episode. Now imagine. A whole series like this… OH, Haikyuu! Seriously. One of my favorite parts of the first season and what probably pulled me in the most was this scene where everyone is eating together after a match.

SPOILER ALERT FOR THE END OF SEASON 1!

Karasano put in everything but unfortunately fell short. As much as this needed to happen to progress the story and this may have been the predictable ending, the impact was felt in this scene. All the players eating together starting to weep at the same time. It was just too much for my heart!

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Conclusion

Go watch Haikyuu! Unfortunately, Hanebado just does not hold up against all the other great sports anime but if you have free time you want to burn, Hanebado is not a bad way to waste your time. Also, BAYOG is going to hold our first ever Anime Night tomorrow! You guessed it. We are going to watch Haikyuu together. Make sure to join our Discord to get more information!

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. Hopefully, this is something you enjoyed. Probably my longest post in a while. Hope we get to hang out during Anime Night. If not, have a good weekend!

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