The newest anime I’ve watched so far, Keijo!!!!!!…is…
Well, it can best be summed up in two words- boobs, and butts. Set in an alternate world where a sport named Keijo is extremely popular, the story revolves around one Nozomi Kaminashi, and her quest to become a professional Keijo player. What is Keijo? Simply put, think sumo, with swimsuits, and players are only allowed to contact each other with their- you guessed it- boobs and butts. It unashamedly takes advantage of fanservice, and takes “refuge in audacity” to a whole new level, that I never could have imagined, but surprisingly, it…wasn’t actually that bad.
Without further ado, let’s get into the review!!!!!! And yes, those exclamation points are necessary. We’re talking about Keijo here!
1. Story: 7.0/10
As mentioned before, Keijo!!!!!!’s story revolves around Nozomi, who wishes to become a professional Keijo player- the best. Along the way, she and her friend, Sayaka Miyata, face ever-more daunting challenges on their quest to succeed in the world of professional Keijo. Entering Setouchi Keijo Training School, Nozomi and Sayaka have to climb their way up the ranks. Learning new techniques and pushing their bodies to the limit, the intrepid trio face rival classmates, rival schools, and even true pros, all for the sake of making it big someday.
One cannot talk about the plot of Keijo!!!!!!! without talking about how the sport works- and boy, it’s something. Taking place in the middle of a pool, different kinds of terrain are set up, all called “Land.” The Land varies, from looking like a basic sumo platform to even an old-school Japanese rooftop. Regardless, the goal is the same- using breasts and butts, the combatants face off, aiming to knock their opponents to their knees, or off the Land entirely.
It is within this context, where we see the basic plot structure of a sports anime. Despite showcasing a myriad of increasingly more ridiculous techniques, featuring named special attacks like the “Vaccum Butt Cannon” and levels of speed that parallel Dragon Ball Z, Keijo!!!!!! isn’t actually that bad. The entire point is that our protagonists get steadily stronger, which Keijo!!!!!! does a decently good job at doing. It’s just that it’s such a ridiculous concept, that one might not notice it at first.
Basically, Keijo!!!!!! is ridiculous, but has a surprisingly decent plot, for a sports anime, helped by copious amounts of fan service.
2. Characters: 8.25/10
The characters of Keijo!!!!!!! are actually interesting, in that they’re not exactly very deep, but they’re just a ton of fun to watch. Take the main character, Nozomi, for instance. An energetic, optimistic, and above all determined girl, her main goal throughout the series is to become a professional Keijo player, and get rich as hell, so she can pull her family out of poverty. It’s a simple goal, and one that doesn’t need much explaining, but then again, it’s basically the only real goal that we ever receive from any character. The only other character who gets anything close to genuine, standard character development is Sayaka Miyata, who wishes to prove her ability in Keijo, despite her father’s wishes for her to succeed in Judo instead.
Despite this lack of development, the characters are fun, simply because of their distinctive personalities. It goes without saying, that many characters are motivated simply because they want to be good at Keijo. With no need to explain motivation, Keijo!!!!!! spends most of its time explaining the specific fighting styles of each character, and in a series as blatantly ludicrous as this, I can say that that time is very well spent.
We get a character that powers up by giving herself a wedgie, another that hypnotizes people using her boobs, one who refers to her butt as, basically a separate entity and man, I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried. Every character, on top of having individual fighting styles, receives some small moments of basic characterization that actually do a lot for the series as a whole. By the end, you get to know the girl who likes BL, one who’s straight up perverted, and the silent, yet skilled girl, and you know, it’s just all one strange heap of characterization that works for the style that Keijo!!!!!! has. In any other series, it would be pretty subpar, but Keijo!!!!!! makes it clear that the characters and the story aren’t really important- it’s just about the ridiculous nature of the sport of Keijo, and upping the ante with every new character introduced. It’s kinda great!
3. Style/Art: 9.25/10
Here, we see Keijo!!!!!! excel. The series KNOWS it’s ridiculous, it KNOWS that it’s based almost completely on fanservice, but man, it really just milks it. Apart from including completely absurd concepts of fighting as is, Keijo!!!!!! makes sure that the games look as epic as any standard action anime.
Flashes of light, epic power clashes, wind effects, named special attacks and abilities, Keijo!!!!!! doesn’t hold anything back. HOW exactly is this girl able to teleport across the platform? WHY is she able to use her nipple as a samurai sword quickdraw? Well, because it’s freaking Keijo!!!!!! Obviously. Where else could you get a Gilgamesh reference alongside a blatant Street Fighter parody?
Stylistically speaking, artistically speaking, Keijo!!!!!! excels. The standard animation looks decent enough as is, but during the games of Keijo, during the actual fights, you start to see something that genuinely looks great. There’s a bit more to the style of Keijo!!!!!! than fanservice, and it makes that clear through its stupid, completely ridiculous amounts of artistic quality. The music doesn’t stand out very much, but with such a premise, and such an art style, I honestly don’t think Keijo!!!!!! needed it.
4. Personal Enjoyment: 8.9/10
Basically, Keijo!!!!!! was thoroughly enjoyable. It’s one of those shows you watch when you’re tired, you don’t want to think, and just want to relax a bit. Sit down, grab some popcorn, and burn through a few episodes of Keijo!!!!!!, and you’ll be feeling right as rain.
Seriously though, Keijo!!!!!! is not an exceptional narrative for the ages. It’s not a “smart” anime, but looking back, I think it was really smartly made. It parodies tons of tropes you can find in standard sports anime, and makes blatant references to anime such as Attack on Titan, Fate/Stay Night, and Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure. If you’re an anime fan, someone who knows anime relatively well, then I’m certain that you’ll find some great enjoyment out of this anime. Or you know. You could just be in it for the fanservice. Whatever floats your Land, my man.
I’ve added up my scores, and all things considered, I’ll give it an 8.35/10, and recommend it to anyone who’s watched anime before! If you haven’t, that’s fine, and I think you can take great enjoyment out of the series anyways, but…just get ready for one heck of a ride.