Wayback(ish) Wednesday – Uma Musume
It’s time again for WAYBACK WEDNESDAY! The last one was posted WAYBACK ago, so there is some consistency…
I initially planned on watching some older anime to create some filler for these and figured I could get several shows binge-watched or just ‘rewatched’ to a point since the Summer 2020 season is full of meh and I would have more time. One of the shows caught my eye though, Umayon.
It’s a spin-off of the anime Uma Musume Pretty Derby. I initially ignored this show when it came out as I am not huge into sports anime, and I made the mistake of thinking it was about literal horse girls, by which I mean centaurs. After all, about 45 percent of my decision on whether or not to watch a show revolves around how cute the girls are. With the obvious exception of Hermaphrodite, centaurs just aren’t cute.
I will fully acknowledge at this point that I was very, very wrong. I blasted through the 13 episode season in under a week and gave it a freaking 9.2 on AniList.co.
The premise is simple enough. Instead of catgirls, this world has horse girls. They’re basically the same as catgirls but are horses. The main protagonist, Special Week (all of the horse girls have elegant ‘horse’ names) comes from the countryside in Hokkaido (which I am beginning to understand is Japan’s Alabama) and goes to an elite school in Tokyo where she will become a star racer.
She joins Team Spica, a team of underdogs (with the exception of the school’s star, Silence Suzuka, who decides to join so she can have more fun while racing) and has fun, makes friends, and wins races along her journey to become the best horse girl in Japan.
It would take me far too much time to introduce the rest of the cast and if the show has one failing it would be that it wants you to care about too many of the characters. While they’re hard to keep track of they’re not hard to like. Really only a couple of characters, Hana the ‘good’ team’s trainer and the French horse are even slightly unlikeable, but they still have their redeeming qualities.
There is some tension in the middle of the series when: [spoiler title=’Spoiler!’]Suzuka breaks her leg. I was getting concerned that the show would be taking a very dark turn as it’s no secret what happens to actual racehorses when they’re injured badly but thankfully Suzuka is allowed to live and continue on with the plot.[/spoiler]
As I said, every character in the show is freaking adorable. The animation is awesome given there is a lot of running and other movements in the show. There are a lot of amusing visual gags in the show and some other great things that only someone like myself would notice. For instance, the phone handsets (yes, landlines are still a thing in their world) are elongated since their ears are on top of their heads and not on the side.
The cell phones still look normal size but they cheat their way around that by only having cell phone conversations on speaker.
Despite this anime not being that far in the past, I had to make a review on it. Again, it’s a lot of fun and cute and at the end of the day, isn’t that what we want all our anime to be? It’s streaming on Crunchyroll!