RogerBW's Blog

Yowamushi Pedal 14 August 2014

2013-2014, 38 episodes: AniDB

Weakling anime fan Sakamichi Onoda finds there's nobody else interested in forming an anime club at his new high school, so ends up joining the bicycle racing club instead. Seems he's got a hidden talent for cycling that even he didn't know about.

Yes, it's the sports anime template, but it manages to maintain interest. The principal character seems remarkably dim considering the number of things he's apparently never thought of doing on a bicycle (such cunning advanced techniques as "adjusting the saddle"), but the huge cast (readily distinguished from each other, something many shows don't manage) manages to keep things moving; they're readily distinguished, both in appearance and in personality, and many of them manage to be interesting people even when their characters are just lightly sketched.

I'm no fan of competitive cycling in the real world, but even I found something here to enjoy. If some of the things people get up to here would be grounds for immediate disqualification in any real race, they do at least tie into the basic theme of psychology over all; one of the rival teams is led by someone who specialises in psychological dominance and other dirty tricks.

The episodes cover Sakamichi's introduction to bike racing up to the point of his first big school championship, the Interhigh, and cut off in mid-race, shortly before the end of the second day of the three-day event. As one might expect, another series is coming.

  1. Posted by Owen Smith at 08:53pm on 14 August 2014

    Competitive cycling is one of the few sports I do enjoy watching (to hell with football...). Team pursuit and team time trials I find particularly compelling, with the teams riding incredibly close to each other's wheels to stay in the slipstream.

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