In my Fall 2022 anime must-watch list post, I did say that I don’t like the Blue Lock anime that much and prefer Ao Ashi more.
Don’t get me wrong. I do think that the anime isn’t that bad. In fact, I will say that Blue Lock is similar to Ao Ashi in so many ways.
But if I have to choose between the Blue Lock anime and Ao Ashi, I will say that I prefer Ao Ashi more since it’s more realistic.
Does it mean that the story in Blue Lock isn’t realistic at all?
Of course, the answer is no. The skills that each player has are as realistic as you can get.
Sure, some skills can be hard to imitate in real life. Heck, I should say that some of them can be dangerous to imitate.
But at the very least, the actions still look realistic unlike the ones in Kuroko no Basket and Eyeshield 21 where the actions feel like you’re reading an action battle manga.
The thing that I find a bit tad unrealistic is the Blue Lock facility itself.
Knowing Japan, it shouldn’t come as a surprise here that a facility like this will exist in the future.
But for now, it can feel a little unrealistic even with the assumption that it will exist someday. Well, at least to me, though.
Funnily enough, the fourth episode onward somehow changed my perception of the anime for the better because of this part of the story.
The things that give me this icky feeling whenever I watch the Blue Lock anime
As you can see here, a dedicated, futuristic football facility isn’t the only thing that throws me off at first.
It’s the system where each player will have to raise their rank by defeating another player is one of the things that doesn’t seem to bode well with me.
Sure, you can say that the concept in Blue Lock isn’t that much different from the one in Ao Ashi.
You’ll still be seeing the players moving up and down the rank within the same team. And not everyone will make it to the main team even if they were in the youth team before.
The ones who remain at the top of the rank tend to be the crème de la crème. Forget about making your way to the main team if your skill is average at best.
Rank-wise, Blue Lock isn’t that much different from Ao Ashi in that sense.
But to say that their football career is literally over when they lose can be a little too much to take.
It feels like the elimination process is similar to Danganronpa too. The only exception is that no dead bodies are involved.
While it’s true that no one died in Blue Lock, it can still feel like a death sentence when you lose and have to leave the facility.
Another thing that gives me this icky feeling is the Blue Lock coach, Ego Jinpachi. It’s hard to forget him when he looks like a carbon copy of Midosuji from Yowamushi Pedal.
Does an eccentric coach need to look like Midosuji, of all people?
I guess that must be the trope for portraying eccentric people, I suppose.
The scene that got me to change my mind about the anime
When the only way to remain in Blue Lock is to increase your rank, you’ll do anything to remain there even if you have to resort to using underhand tactics.
It’s not unusual to see teams using underhand tactics just to win the game.
And the need to use underhand tactics intensifies even more when your own survival in Blue Lock is on the line.
But it’s not the use of the underhand tactics that makes the story interesting.
It’s the betrayal that makes the story interesting instead.
While betrayal is unheard of in sports anime of any kind, it’s not unusual for something like this to occur in Blue Lock considering the rule itself.
That’s what happened to Team Z when Kuon betrayed them by telling Team W everything about his teammates and their strategy.
I won’t spoil you with what happened to Kuon after that. But suffice it to say that it doesn’t end well for him.
The rest of the stuff you’ll be seeing throughout the story isn’t that much different from your usual sports anime.
Players who are stronger and more talented than Isagi and his teammates. And I’m sure that the hurdle that they have to face is going to be much bigger as they move along the rank.
But it’s the betrayal part that takes me by surprise the most.
Does it mean Blue Lock is better than Ao Ashi then?
Not going to lie that my first impression of Blue Lock has changed ever since then. But my preference remains the same, though.
As much as I enjoy watching a story that has a different twist on something that we’re already familiar with, I still prefer Ao Ashi more since it’s much closer to the actual depiction of being a professional soccer player.
If you enjoy watching soccer anime, then I highly recommend that you give both Ao Ashi and Blue Lock a try.
But if you want something more on the realistic side, then Ao Ashi is your best bet.
Will I be adding Blue Lock manga to my reading list?
Most likely yes.
When I’ll be adding the manga to my reading list is something that I’m not sure of.
But one thing I know for sure is I’m certainly going to get the manga when it’s on sale.
P.S. If you enjoy watching sports anime and you’re in the mood to read a sports light novel, then you most likely will enjoy reading my basketball light novel, Twisted Destiny.
Yes, I know that Twisted Destiny is not a soccer light novel. But if you’re into sports light novels of any kind, consider giving Twisted Destiny a try.
Interested in buying the light novel? You can buy the light novel right here on my Payhip store:
Don’t forget to use the coupon code SEKINAMAYUBLOG to receive 25% off on your purchase.
Just to let you know that Twisted Destiny is available in print and on other retailers such as Amazon, Barnes, and Noble, Kobo, and Apple Books as well.
But you can only get a discount if you buy the book from my Payhip store, though.
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