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Keijo!!!!!!!! Review

Cover artwork at XEBEC

This anime series by XEBEC that is based on the manga series by Daichi Sorayomi features an alternate reality at the start of the 21st century where a new sport with legalized betting and attractive prize money called keijo was introduced to modern Japan. Keijo is a competitive contact sport where only women are allowed to compete and the sport requires battling other competitors in swimwear and knock other competitors off various different floating platforms into the water using only their breasts or buttocks.

In this series, it features a group of students who recently enrolled at Setouchi Keijo Training School and started out as roommates in an unpopular room Nozomi Kaminashi, Sayaka Miyata, Kazane Aoba and Non Toyoguchi. As they train and practice together in the competitive sport, they form friendships with each other and with the students of the elite class while also encountering various challenges and hardship in their training regimen as well as with various opponents they will compete against.

The main theme of this anime series and the introduction of the main characters in the first episode gives the appearance of a slapstick comedy with drama and fan service. For those who find the background introduction of the main characters interesting enough to watch subsequent episodes in this series, this anime series offers a surprisingly good variety of drama, action and humour to the storyline to make it stand out.

Promo video with song DREAMxSCRAMBLE! on YouTube by warnerbrosanime

Promo video with song Fantas/HIP Girlfriends! on YouTube by ワーナー ブラザース 公式チャンネル

Two slightly different opening themes on YouTube by charmanime productions AMV & Demas

From the difficulties in the training regimen, dealing with people around them as friends, mentors and rivals, discovering the strengths in each of them and overcoming their personal weaknesses and insecurities, Keijo!!!!!!!! delivers on the drama, character-building and relationships the main characters have with each different character.

Training regimen on YouTube by Anime Videos

Teamwork test in episode 2 on YouTube by LiTrack 01

Every eligible contestant featured in this anime series has at least one unique signature move that is introduced to viewers with comical flair, there is variation in the match area where each match is different with plenty of unexpected surprises and the ending theme is funny where the main characters' daily routine of hanging their laundry leads to the main characters running after their laundry. All these help to make the anime series stand out for its drama, comedic moments, choreographed moves and character animation together with a generous amount of fan service that combines light-hearted slapstick comedy, artistic flair and creativity.

All special moves featured in anime series on YouTube by Nerlen_Poi (Contain spoilers)

Various funny moments on YouTube by EmoKayGeeZA

Ending theme on YouTube by DAWN IS NEAR

Among the main characters, Nozomi gives the outward appearance of being a skilled gymnast with acrobatic backflips and somersaults, an excitable character who is determined to make her mark in keijo and reap the large prize money that would come from being a professional keijo player in future, loves attention and makes friends easily while also being ingenious and creative. Sayaka as Nozomi's close friend and roommate is more quiet and tends to avoid attention to herself while also being intelligent and creative herself contrasts well with Nozomi's personality and also adds to the depth of the story. This shows that the scriptwriters and anime producers have added a lot of thought to the keijo matches featured in this series by showing that they are more than just mindless fan service and comical slow-motion battle moves by having numerous tense moments and unexpected surprises that will keep viewers to watch each keijo match throughout which often take up the full duration of an episode which last 20 minutes and may span multiple consecutive episodes.

Kazane and Non have less of an impact in the story as Nozomi and Sayaka's friends and roommates, yet both of them also help to provide comedy and drama in this series by highlighting traits in Nozomi, Sayaka or in their opponents while also having their own unique personality, traits and signature moves. Most of the other keijo players featured in this series also have a unique personality and signature moves to add to the drama and comic variety in this series, although they are not as memorable as the main characters as they only make a few appearances and a few have similar swimwear, hair style and colour which make it difficult to see them apart from the others.

Overall, as an action comedy with plenty of drama and fan service targeted at male teenage audiences and above, this series is recommended for those who are looking to try out an anime series featuring a fictitious contact sport, an all-female cast of characters in a modern Japanese setting with plenty of humour and unexpected surprises that will keep viewers to watch each episode and like or don't mind the exaggerated moments and fan service among the comedic moments in this anime series.

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