In December of 2015 I decided to pick a bunch of non-seasonal anime that I wanted to watch alongside the winter 16 season. One of these series was Inazuma Eleven.
Now I went into this anime with very low expectations due to the fact that I don’t like sports that much plus some of my least favourite sports are football, boxing volleyball and baseball. So I was expected to hate this anime because of it. As again I don’t like sports that much and honestly I was expecting to kinda hate this anime. Was I wrong in my personal judgement or I am right.
Hello everyone Shawn/TheKazeTrigger here and today I will be reviewing the anime series Inazuma Eleven is this show worth a watch let’s find out?
The story takes place a Raimon Junior High School where Team Captain Endou has to form new members for the Raimon soccer and they hope to complete in various tournaments. But before they do that they have to face Teikoku Gakuen at the soccer so the soccer club won’t be disbanded by the school
Inazuma Eleven is split up into 3 main arcs as well as some subplots that take place during the main arcs.
Football Frontier ARC (EP1-26)
Ailea Academy ARC (EP27-EP65)
Football Frontier International ARC (EP66-127 End)
Honestly the story isn’t the strongest part of Inazuma Eleven. If am going to be real honest here it’s one of the weaker parts especially in the earlier episodes of the first arc which I found to be cheesy at times but at the same time I just can’t to get really infested into it.
The first half it its execution. In my opinion you can make even the most boring sounding setups really good if you can get the execution just right and Inazuma Eleven just that. Honestly I don’t care if the sport is realistic or not because for I only care about the execution more than anything else
The other half are the subplots and in my opinion they are some best subplots I have ever seen in any anime. They are just really handled well and they add life to the characters which prevents them from being boring and generic shounen characters.
All of the arcs were all very enjoyable to watch and they well directed because each arc knows to use its content really well.
The show explores the theme for friendship, teamwork, value as well as overcoming your fears and weaknesses and this show manages to executes them perfectly.
I really like the story for this one even though it’s on the little basic side for the most part. I don’t think much more was needed because the execution of it was so well handled especially in seasons 2 and 3 where the writers decided to go all out.
Great job director Katsuhito Akiyama.
The characters are what really brings this show together because like with the story it is execution was just great.
First we have Endou Mamoru who is our main captain for the Raimon and later on Inazuma Japan as well as being the main goalkeeper for the team.
Endou starts off as a goofy and kinda hot headed protestant who has a passion for football but honestly as the series progresses he developed from a less goofy hot headed main protagonist to a very determined and more responsible captain for the team. I actually adore this character because he is well developed character and a lovable one.
I was really impressed with Endou as a who and that’s why I adore him and he’s one of my favorites characters in the show to be honest,
Next up we have our main striker for Raimon Gouenji Shuuya.
Now like Endou he has a strong passion for football but unlike Endou he’s much calmer but self-centred but as the series progresses he much friendly to the team as having massive character development. Not to mention his subplot and backstory was just great and well told.
Overall Gouenji is a great character for his own right.
Lastly we have Kidou Yuuto who is the brains and strategist player for Raimon who is formerly the Captain of the Teikoku Academy but now is an irreplaceable addition to Raimon Junior High. I can only say this much to this character because he is a walking spoiler character which hes side plot. Besides the one that I just mentioned because it happens early on the story anyway.
All I can say about Kidou is he is an amazing character and he is one of the few complex characters.
The rest of the characters are hit or mess depending on your tastes.
For me most of the characters were great because they had they own subplots which are well written for the most part and they fun to watch as well as being well developed. Sure there were a few miss characters like but least they didn’t damage the show for me.
Then we have what is easily my favourite characters in Inazuma Eleven. Kazemaru Ichirouta.
I honestly have grown attached with this chararter because I just really liked how his very friendly as well as being competitive player not to mention I really adore he’s character design
In my option Kazemaru is probably the most realistic character in this show personality wise. Kazemaru is such an amazing character and is currently my anime mascot for my WordPress website.
Overall the characters were just amazing in my opinion
If you guys didn’t know Inazuma Eleven was done by OLM which is the same studio that brought us Pokemon, Youkai Watch and Berserk 1997 and to be honest with you guys. Besides this and Berserk (1997) OLM I don’t think OLM is not a good studio least in my option.
The art of Inazuma Eleven is fresh and surprised great because I like most the character deigns because they feel fresh and original
One thing that I liked that is the use of color for each arc representing the mood and the tone of each arc.
The football frontier arc has bright color feel it to it but not full colorful while the Aliea Academy arc has a more depressing feel to it. Then we have the football frontier arc international arc which has more modern sports anime feel to it because of the colour usage and the art, in general, has greatly improved in the terms of quality.
The animation is surprising really good and it stays consistent all the thought and when they players use hissatsu techniques its freaking amazing of how well animated they all are. Sure at times can use re-use the hissatsu animation but for a show like this I didn’t really bother me too much because they are amazingly animated.
Also the character designs for the most part were great and very unique
Sure there were a few questionable ones but they didn’t really bother me too much.
This is by definitely Oriental Light and Magic finest work in terms of art and animation especially in season 3 (Football Frontier International Arc) where it looks absolutely beautiful at times putting some of the recent anime to shame.
Overall the art/animation is great for what it is.
The first time that I listened to the OST I personally found it lacklustre but over time I started getting used to it and I ended up completely loving the OST because how amazing it was.
Hell, some of the tracks in Inazuma Eleven are emotional and just plan epic.
Notable tracks include.
Teikoku Gakuen Theme empire Gakuen came!
Mortal combat with the empire Gakuen
At this of the Inazuma Eleven OST has become one of my favourite anime OST.
All of the Opening and Endings themes are amazing and a good listen. My favourite openings and endings in Inazuma Eleven are opening 4 and ending 3 because they fit every well with each other like the opening 4 adds hype for that arc while ending 1 closes that arc perfectly.
The Japanese audio for the series was great and the voice actors were well acted.
Notable performance goes to Junko Takeuchi as Endou Mamarou, Hiroyuki Yoshino as Kidou Yuuto, Sanae Kobayashi as Natsumi Raimon, Rie Kugimiya aka (Tsundere Queen) as Toramaru Utsunomiya, Yuki Kaji as Kazuya Ichinose and Nishigaki, Yuka as Kazemaru Ichirouta.
There’s also an English dub. Please don’t watch the English dub it’s really bad. I watch the dub for this on Nintendo’s anime channel just to see how it is and it was just awful. Not only the voices were bad but the audio quality itself is bad plus the story and characters development were butchered to all hell.
All of the character has different names and they were really bad on that and the final nail of the coffin for this dub is the show cuts off after season 2 leaving you with a uncompleted story.
I only watched the first 2 episodes for the dub for this I dropped it half way in episode because the voices were just so freaking horrible to listen plus the voice actors had no emotion with the roles whatsoever.
This is a horrendous dub and it up there with some of the worst dubs I heard up there with Higurashi, Fushigi Yuugi, and Samurai X Trust and Betrayal dub is that bad.
So there really no reason to watch Inazuma Eleven dubbed and I won’t take any points away because its honestly hard to find a Inazuma Eleven dub nowadays let alone good quality.
Overall besides what I said about the dub the I really love the OST, Openings, Endings and voice acting for the original Japanese audio.
Inazuma Eleven might just be the anime that I realize I judged this too early.
Am being real honest when I say that my opinions for this anime went from basically is just an another mediocre sports anime to oh my god l freaking this anime so much!!!
Seriously this went being something that i will hate to something that I will love and it impressed me in so many ways that I will never thought possible with a sports anime let alone a kid’s anime.
This and another show called Gurren Lagann taught me that you don’t have to dark and serious or realistic to be good.
This is just an awesome anime that I barely speak my praises enough. The story, the characters, the animation the OST, the openings the endings and the voice acting were all just great. I know it could easily have flopped but execution for everything is so great that I can’t ignore it.
I love Inazuma Eleven and I glad to put this anime in my favorites list.
I give Inazuma Eleven a 9.5/10 (It was a blast that I will forever love)
Yeah it has its hip-cups and despise is very too high of a score but to extremely honest I just don’t care.
I absolutely love this anime.
Eureka Seven (For the football episode)
Anyway this has been Shawn aka TheKazeTrigger and I will see you guys next time.