Harukana Receive – Full Season QandA Rundown

Harukana Receive – Full Season QandA Rundown

What’s the important information? Harukana Receive is a Summer 2018 sports anime that aired 12 episodes between July and September. It is based on a Seinen manga series by mangaka Nyoijizai.

What’s it about? Haruka is a city girl who has moved to the island prefecture of Okinawa to live with her cousin Kanata, together they bond over beach volleyball and with American twin sisters Claire and Emily Thomas form a beach volleyball club with the intent on competing in tournaments and becoming the best in Japan.

Haruka is all sorts of adorkable.

Why did you watch it? I don’t know if you know this about me already but I’ve kind of got a thing for anime girls, so a whole series of cute anime girls in bikinis playing beach volleyball is right up my alley, heck I’d watch a show about cute anime girls painting a house if they were cute and scantily clad enough!

Did you enjoy the show? Despite my usual dissatisfaction with sports anime in general I did enjoy this show, while never truly reaching the heights of greatness it was always entertaining, always fun and always had something appealing to look at, whether it be the pristine Okinawan scenery or the girls themselves.

Butt slaps are customary when it comes to sports! Especially beach volleyball!

What was your favourite episode? As much as I enjoyed how exciting and legitimately tense the season finale’s final match between Haruka/Kanata and Claire/Emily, I can’t help but be drawn to the more slice of life centric episodes and as such Episode 4’s “Isn’t This Perfect For Us?” which centred on the girls buying swimsuits and trying them on and also introduced side characters Ai and Mai was probably a personal favourite.

Emily didn’t approve of her sister’s choice of bikini.

What were your most favourite things about the show? The friendships formed between the girls were genuine and heartfelt and each girl had something unique and fun about their personality that made them interesting to watch and interact with one another. Also the boobs and butts.

They’re famous you see!

Wbat were your least favourite things about the show? While I often overlooked it in my episodic reviews of the series some of the animation during the beach volleyball segments felt lazy and static, with an over-reliance on slow-motion footage of the volleyball and reaction shots rather than fluid animation.

This is a really long gif, it’d be shorter if the ball moved realistically…

Who was your favourite character? As mentioned above, all of the girls had something likable and endearing about them, in addition to being unfailingly attractive. But for some reason I was always drawn back to Emily Thomas so she wins as my favourite character.

Thoughts on the OP (opening), ED (ending) and the soundtrack in general? From my limited experience sports anime ~usually~ have pretty bangin’ OP’s but unfortunately “FLY two BLUE” by Kana Yūki and Saki Miyashita is a rather ordinary song, it’s okay but nothing special. The same can be said for the ED; “Wish me luck!!!” sung by the cast, it’s ~slightly~ better but only just. HOWEVER, a recurring insert song “Rise” by Rasmus Faber is infinitely better than both and should have definetly been used in lieu of either song!

They love teasing each other!

What’s something unique about this show? I’m sure I’ll get some pushback from some people on this, but I feel like despite the fact the show’s a 12 episode long beach-episode the fan-service feels unobtrusive and naturalistic to the point where it never felt like it was being intentionally perverted or leering. Maybe my view on this is skewed as a male, and someone who watches a lot of significantly more ecchi shows, but this series was rather matter-of-fact with its depiction of the girls in bikinis. Yes there were close-ups of bikini-clad butts on occasion but it never lingered and never indulged in over-sexualised soft-focus.

It’s to demonstrate the hand signals, nothing else I swear… *sweats*

What other anime are most like it for the sake of comparison? For a straight up comparison to another show where cute anime girls played sports ‘Scorching Ping Pong Girls’ is a natural comparison but the two shows feel too different to say if you enjoyed one you’d just as clearly enjoy the other. I think thematically ‘Uma Musume: Pretty Derby’ is more of a closer sibling series and has the same ~loose~ definition of what a “sports anime” entails.

You can touch my turtle head, Haruka!

Who would you recommend it to? Obviously anyone who likes to watch cute girls in bikini’s, but more than that anyone into the CGDCT genre are sure to find something to endear themselves with this series and these characters. Strictly speaking this isn’t a CGDCT show, but it shares more DNA with shows like that than perhaps it does with the more ~hardcore~ of sports anime.

Sum up the season in one sentence: ‘Fun in the sun with cute girls doing sport, among other things’.

Final score? 84 out of 100.

Kanata is so shy sometimes!

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review
Slow Balling – Episode 3 Review
Wardrobe Malfunction – Episode 4 Review
Little Resistance – Episode 5 Review
I Was Wrong – Episode 6 Review
Idling Idol – Episode 7 Review
The Wrong Finger – Episode 8 Review
Dirty Tactics – Episode 9 Review
What Happened To Grandpa? – Episode 10 Review
A Friendly Rivalry – Episode 11 Review
Chance Ball – Episode 12 Review

If you liked my post and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



A Friendly Rivalry – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 11 Review with Irina & Matt

A Friendly Rivalry – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 11 Review with Irina & Matt

This is mine and Irina’s (from I Drink And Watch Anime!) continuing collaboration on Harukana Receive! If you missed the previous reviews there are links at the bottom of the page, I am represented by the bold text.

Here we are the penultimate episode–things are quickly coming to a head and with the exception of a brief flashback at the start and some sideline pep talks this was mostly an episode strictly about beach volleyball! That’s kind of a big deal? One big thing I did notice or rather one lack of big thing is, Haruka was so flat in the opening tag before the OP. For a second there I was super worried for you! She perked up in the next scene thankfully. I didn’t notice, man my head isn’t in the game today! You know things are bad when Irina’s on ‘oppai watch’ *slaps face* LET’S DO THIS THING!

What did you think of that cute little flashback at the start? I think it helped solidify how important a good rival can be for development (but then I’m just presuming, I know nothing about sports after all). I liked it. I quite like Claire in general so any development of her character is welcome. I also enjoyed Marissa’s input there. She managed to seem both like a great coach and a great mom. What’s not to like.

BRF’s. Best Rivals Forever.

So “Eclair” loses the second set–predictable–forcing them into a third, shortened 15-point set, is that normal to have a shortened third set? Am I asking questions you have no idea about? I’m not sure about 2 vs 2. Normal volleyball is 3 out of 5 with 25 point games but it use to be 2 out of 3 with 15 point games so maybe that’s where it comes from.

Speaking of development–kinda interesting how Haruka managed to pick how to use “topspin” after having just learnt about it from a previous match, eh? Does that strain disbelief for you? I’ve written on my blog before about how my very favourite element of sports anime is how it generally glorifies hard work and effort above all else, even winning. I live in a society that really overvalues natural born talent (they make it seem so effortless!!!) and undervalues work, which can lead to a general sense of apathy which I dislike. Sports anime usually run counter to that, showing the importance and value of effort. Even antagonists work themselves to the bone. I find that admirable and comforting.

Look at this pair! And the other pair too!

I felt like the last half of the episode was ~particularly~ tense, not much talking on the court (is it called a court when it’s made of sand?) and lots of focus on fast(er) action. I thought for probably the first time this whole series the sport was decently represented–at least in terms of it being compelling and heart-pumping! Right, Irina? Right?… Right… I didn’t like it at all. The animation got a little better but it resorted to so many still shots that it completely broke the flow of the action. At one point it looked like one team was literally teleporting around the court while the other team was taking a nap, looking surprised that the ball got returned…during a game… It was just meh as far as matches go.

Did you at least enjoy that post-’deuce’ breather that the girls had to compose themselves as the credits ran over it, I thought it was very well done, the usage of colour in the scene with the Eclair pair being highlighted in cool, sharp greens and Harauka and Kanata being lit in warm–almost flushed orange felt like a dynamic visual contrast. Hey look at me talking about colour-theory in an anime about cute girls in bikinis! I’ll be honest, I didn’t notice the colour palette shift but the way you describe it sounds really cool.

I think 3 episodes is quite enough.

And the episode predictably ends on a cliffhanger! Doh!

I don’t know if I’m imagining things but Haruka and Kanata’s grandmother kept making awkward smiles at Akari… have we been shipping the wrong girls this whole time?! Is that why the grandfather has been ‘missing’ this whole time! (Oh no, you’re unique brand of crazy seems to be rubbing off on me…) I got the same thing. It’s in my notes…I thought I was imagining things! But no – weird canon but I’m here for it. Best part of the episode too!

Not pictured: weird grandma smiles. Pictured: butt.

Anyway that aside, do you still think Eclair should win? Or have the other two proven themselves to be capable (at least in terms of the narrative) of being worthy and believable winners? I have no preference. As for proving themselves worthy of winning…If the twins can be defeated by complete newcomers with no experience, no practice and no history of sports in their first tournament… yeah they probably never deserved to win anything in the first place I guess. Not that winning is the point of these stories. It’s not about who won or lost it’s the friends we gained along the way–or some shit like that, yeah?

So I liked this episode–a lot, as it turns out but Irina, well… take it away! In short, I found that the episode really concentrated on the stuff I *personally* find boring or subpar and didn’t take advantage at all of the things it does really well. It’s partly because I’ve seen so many sports shows with bigger animation budgets where the movement is mesmerising so the small production shortcuts are particularly glaring for me. However, this episode solidified my (again personal) belief that the show would be better without the volleyball.

Teamwork, yay!

You heard it here first folks! Irina wants less sports and more teenage bikini related fan-service! And you guys call me a pervert… Tch! Join us next week for the season finale of Harukana Receive on Irina’s site!

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review
Slow Balling – Episode 3 Review
Wardrobe Malfunction – Episode 4 Review
Little Resistance – Episode 5 Review
I Was Wrong – Episode 6 Review
Idling Idol – Episode 7 Review
The Wrong Finger – Episode 8 Review
Dirty Tactics – Episode 9 Review
What Happened To Grandpa? – Episode 10 Review

If you liked my post and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



Dirty Tactics – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 9 Review with Irina & Matt

Dirty Tactics – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 9 Review with Irina & Matt

This is mine and Irina’s (from I Drink And Watch Anime!) continuing collaboration on Harukana Receive! If you missed the previous reviews there are links at the bottom of the page, I am represented by the bold text.

So as I predicted last week we had something of a time skip forward, what with the majority of our group now being third years and new girl Akari being their underclassmen. They’ve spent the break practicing and are now ready for the… what is it that they’re currently competing in? Qualifiers? I don’t know sports… Maaaattt!!! The SKIPPED the training!!! Why would they skip the training!!!! That’s the whole point! You don’t even need the tournament… If you’re going to make us sit through the volleyball at least make it feel earned…The training is my favourite part. I dunno what they’re competing in. Backyard neighbourhood fest? Winner gets free pizza? I kinda want pizza now…

I liked that Akari made scrunchies for them all though…

Were you happy that new girl Akari got a bit more time in this episode with the first half of it almost being told from her perspective? I did but it also didn’t make much sense to me. Since we haven’t seen her evolution I’m not sure when she started caring about the rest of the team that much. I also don’t get why no one knew they would compete against each other. They entered the same bracket, that’s how tournaments work… I do like the character though but this week it felt like her part was a bit tacked on.

She has such a kind face for a tsun.

By the way how did Akari get pinky’s number. Have they even ever met before? Why is everyone calling her? And she’s really great about giving advice. This fascinates me. You realize this means we are missing all these awesome episodes of the girls going out for milkshakes and singing karaoke together. Probably taking showers after onsen together…. Akari said Haruka gave her her phone number after the airport from last episode, but yeah… I feel like we’re missing out on a lot of fun too… I mean life isn’t all beaches and bikinis, wait, what am I saying?!

I find it weird/interesting that this show doesn’t feel like it has a stable protagonist (by which I mean the same protagonist every episode–not that they’re mentally unhinged or anything…) Really, I always thought Haru was the only protagonist. In fact I am use to much more ensemble based shows.

*head pats*

With the exception of the starting part about Akari being nervous to tell the others the news that only one team would be going to nationals this was mostly a sports episode. Albeit with a slightly different flow than the others with a lot of the action being narrated to us, rather than shown–I guess that’s one way to fit in a full game into under 10 minutes. I know this is not the actual case but I only remember them doing the one two finger signal (the one that points at their behind). We always see the same one. So my had canon is that there’s only one and all the scenes of Haru and Kana studying those signals are Haru not being able to grasp the only one there is! Like she’s too mesmerized by Kana’s butt to even think (OR she picked it up the first time and has been pretending not to know so they can “study” more)! Well everyone likes to practice their fingering. Now you made it dirty… Subtlety has never been my strong suit!

Now kiss…

What did you think of those two new girls? I liked them but mostly because their bikini bottoms seemed especially low riding. I’m predictable like that. I felt bad for them. They’ve been playing for 4 years at least and training like crazy for 3 years non stop and they couldn’t beat someone who picked up a volleyball for the first time two month ago. The should probably not try to make this a career. They were really great losers though.

Not pictured: butt cracks.

I am surprised you didn’t mention the loli. Ai or Mai? Isn’t she your type? Oh no… I have a “type” now, do I? She’s not my ‘best girl’ in the show if that’s what you’re asking–the reveal on that bit of info will have to wait for my 10 Best Waifu’s of Summer 2018 list, coming soon! I’m basing this on you saying you love her a couple of reviews ago. I pick up on subtle things like information being patiently spelled out. I like her spunky personality that’s all, I–I’m not a lolicon! Baka!  Moving right along…

Then again…

And the episode ends with the match-up between Claire & Emily and Haruka & Kananta. A match that’ll no doubt span the entire episode and be hard fought. The irlwaifu already made her prediction that they’ll win a set each and then “glasses girl” will do something to lose the match for her side. What are your predictions? The blondes kinda have to win if you want to respect the internal integrity of the story.

(To be honest I’m just hoping for a wardrobe malfunction…)

She’s a mischievous one alright.

Matt, you’ve been avoiding the issue and I know this is painful, but we should just brace ourselves now. Obviously something terrible happened to Marissa. The girls are all putting on brave fronts and I respect that but we have to face facts. Ohh maybe the twins WILL loose when they have to go identify their mother’s body? Organized crime syndicate took her out when she refused to throw a match in a rigged highschool amateur volleyball gambling racket. TWIST! That went dark – you should edit that out…. I can tell you’re bored with a show when you start making up darker versions of what’s actually going on. The worst thing that’s going to happen is someone’s going to get a cold before the big match, but your idea is good too! *backs away slowly*

Next episode should be good!

Now now, it’s really not that bad…But I did look for Marissa the whole episode. Why bother to introduce the character if you’re only going to use her for one lift??? Wait I now…. She’s a volleyball coach she can teach them the epic new technique of facing their partner and pointing at their boobs. Double the signal possibilities! I’m a genius! Now, why aren’t you writing for this show? It’d be all milkshakes and shopping trips and fingering for days, it’d be perfect! Stop making it sound dirty!!!

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review
Slow Balling – Episode 3 Review
Wardrobe Malfunction – Episode 4 Review
Little Resistance – Episode 5 Review
I Was Wrong – Episode 6 Review
Idling Idol – Episode 7 Review
The Wrong Finger – Episode 8 Review

If you liked my post and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



Idling Idol – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 7 Review with Irina & Matt

Idling Idol – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 7 Review with Irina & Matt

This is mine and Irina’s (from I Drink And Watch Anime!) continuing collaboration on Harukana Receive! If you missed the previous reviews there are links at the bottom of the page, I am represented by the bold text.

And here we are at Episode 7, we made some predictions about whether we’d have sports or slice of life this week. Seems like Slice of Life was the winner, doesn’t it! And it’s definitely for the best.

From the outset with that ridiculous idol show opening this show had me in a good mood from start to finish! (It also gave me slight Uma Musume flashbacks too!) I LOVE the idol show complete with that uncanny 3D. I am really hoping that’s the new OP but sadly it’s unlikely. This is the level of ridiculous I enjoy.

I mean if actual Beach Volleyball idols were this absurd it might make for an even more interesting show.

It seemed like the comedy was a bit more at the forefront, albeit mild–it still got a few hearty chuckles out of me! I wouldn’t call this show a comedy but it I got a few chuckles too. Especially at the beginning. The twins make a good two man team.

What’s do you think of Akari, the new addition to the Beach Volleyball Club–I wasn’t sure at first but I warmed up to her as the episode went on… I like her. She’s the tsundere archetype they were missing for the traditional cute girl team. I think it’s a bit ridiculous how they have all these completely inexperienced players magically become great but if they actually do keep her in a manager role, it could be really fun. It would also be a different dynamic to explore.

This is a good emoji face.

Also she has hat garter thing as part of her swimsuit and I really want to know what it’s for. Swim stakings? Please tell me there’s such a thing. If it was Claire who was wearing it it may have explained where she kept pulling that Club Application form from… I enjoyed that silly running joke.


There was a short scene showing us beach volley idols. I bet you’re disappointed that’s not the whole show! Hey, with Akari joining the club it might very well end up becoming an actual plot point and not a throw-away reference, who knows at this point this show seems to be willing to explore a lot of things that aren’t sport but rather ~sport adjacent~. I’m thinking swimsuit may be the common thread…

When the “crowd” was shouting her name all I could think of was Yuruyuri. “Akarin!” Whoa whoa there. This episode was better but this ain’t no Yuru Yuri.

Speaking of ‘yuri’, did you like when Haruka said for Kanata to stop talking about her “ex-girlfriend” in relation to her previous playing partner? Maybe they are going to go a romantic route with this show, I certainly would like that! I dunno. If it’s baiting then it’s a little lame. If they are actually developing an honest relationship then it’s a bit out of the blue. Haruka has never shown any sort of jealousy before. For now I’m just sort of taking those moments as meaningless fanservice and if it turns out to be plot relevant, great!

Punish me Haruka sempai!

I didn’t take her jealousy to be serious, but I didn’t take it to mean nothing either–more just playfulness which I guess could be fanservice or could turn into something, again it’s too hard to know for sure at this point. I’ve actually bought Volume 1 of the manga so maybe in like 2 years time when they catch up to where this anime will end I’ll know if it progresses any further. I may have read that just the first volume though so I don’t know where it’s heading either.

And the episode ends with a non-cliffhanger pretending to be a cliffhanger where Claire and Emily’s mother shows up–that family has some mighty strong genes… I didn’t notice her cleavage which is what I’m assuming your hinting at here. I thought she looked really young! This is the type of show where I can only tell the girls apart by their hair so having 3 blondes is tricky…

Is it racist to say I can’t tell the mother and her daughters apart? Nope, because they’re the only white people in this series!

I was more referring to her being young but I could understand why you’d make that assumption–it is me we’re talking about after all. What do you think her purpose in the plot is going to be for next week’s episode (don’t answer if you already know)? I don’t already know. The show is already way further than I got. We needed a coach character – so far all the girls have been taking turns playing the role.I actually hope we get a chance at exploring some mother daughter dynamics. We rarely see those and that would seriously rock. I hope this episode is a sign of things to come. I really think Harukana is a much better cute girl show than sports anime. Hard to disagree with that because these are some seriously cute girls… #justsayin

And that’s our review of Episode 7, find out what happens next episode next week on Irina’s site!

Come into the light, Akari!

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review
Slow Balling – Episode 3 Review
Wardrobe Malfunction – Episode 4 Review
Little Resistance – Episode 5 Review
I Was Wrong – Episode 6 Review

If you liked my post and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



Little Resistance – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 5 Review with Irina & Matt

Little Resistance – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 5 Review with Irina & Matt

This is mine and Irina’s (from I Drink And Watch Anime!) continuing collaboration on Harukana Receive! If you missed the previous reviews there are links at the bottom of the page, I am represented by the bold text.

Back again on the beach with Episode 5, and it looks like finally we’re going to have an actual, high(ish) stakes game of beach volleyball on our hands! I guess they decided NOT to take my advice after all. I mean that’s fine…whatever…it’s not like they have to just because I’ve been right about every single thing so far. Whatever…I don’t care….

Why do I get the feeling that you didn’t much care for this episode? What with all the slow-mo sports and CGI balls… i.e. everything about the series you have expressed a dislike for so far? To be honest I found it kind of boring.

Admittedly the slow-mo does make the matches seem longer–no small feat considering we have a whole episode and only finish 1 and a half sets of a single match! We did see the blonde girls play a little bit too.

I hear sand gets everywhere.

I really like Ai and Mai–especially Mai, she’s so adorable–especially when she’s getting all fired up against Haruka! But I’m glad their first proper match was against this duo, they even made me root for the new girls what with that little flashback to Ai convincing Mai to join the volleyball club and the heartbreaking defeat at the hands of dreaded “tall girls”! The episode was constructed in classic sports trope style. Remember when the main girl was insecure about her height in the first episode, maybe they could bring that back. Mind you it doesn’t make much sense anymore since she’s pretty average height now.

Well from that angle she looks like a Titan. Wouldn’t mind being swallowed by her…

Correct me if I’m wrong but I feel like transitioning from indoor volleyball to beach volleyball would be pretty difficult? I would think so too. Sand gives a very different haptic feedback from floor. I’m not sure exactly how much wind comes into play since a volleyball is very heavy. I mean wind doesn’t have that big an impact in tennis and I would think it’s much easier to send a tennis ball off course.

I’m kind of falling for the ~vibe~ of this show, what with the Latin American inspired background music and the summery atmosphere and the almost laid back approach to a very fast sports, not to mention all those bikinis… it’s all very ‘chill’. Really – I find it very dramatic – I wish it was more chill to be honest.

Mai is silly, I like her.

I was surprised the episode ended where it did, I didn’t think this would be the kind of show to have single matches last beyond an episode, but I guess that’s pretty standard for sports anime, which this show looks like it’s finally become. Well this tournament has to last until the end of the season. I do hope we get a filler ep somewhere in there.

So I guess it’s safe to say there’s very little this show can do to redeem itself in your eyes? (I very much doubt it’s going to go full ‘yuri’ nor is it pushing your sports anime buttons, right?) I don’t know if the word redeem is right here. It’s fine. I think I agree with the general consensus from what I’ve read on other blogs and around the nets. You never know – there is still time develop the characters which could be interesting.

And there we have it, join us next week on Irina’s blog for episode 6!

They make a cute couple, err I mean pair… partners! Ah…

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review
Slow Balling – Episode 3 Review
Wardrobe Malfunction – Episode 4 Review

If you liked my post and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



Slow Balling – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 3 Review with Irina & Matt

Slow Balling – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 3 Review with Irina & Matt

This is mine and Irina’s (from I Drink And Watch Anime!) continuing collaboration on Harukana Receive! If you missed the previous reviews there are links at the bottom of the page!

So it’s time for episode three and finally we get an OP! And it’s kinda just okay… I guess my expectations were too high! Honestly to OP is pretty lame. It’s just kinda boring and the music is very generic. They’re not even taking advantage of the cute girl character designs. It does highlight that pretty colour palette but that’s about it.

Game face – on!

I saw one of your tweets about this episode before I even watched the episode and I got to be honest I kinda had it in my mind the whole time I was watching it. Oooopppss. In case you guys didn’t see it, it said:

#harukana_receive  might be improved if they took out the volleyball scenes”


Quite the margin.

I know you weren’t a fan of the whole slo-mo sports action in the first episodes (or maybe just in general) but I thought it was fine… not just that I thought they mixed it up enough, sure it was ~mostly~ in slow motion but I think that kind of fit the tone they were going for in this episode–it wasn’t meant to be an intense match but rather a more introspective experience with Kanata learning to find herself and whatever her play style is supposed to be going forward. Matt’s just wrong guys. The animation during games is atrocious. You know what would make this show better…if they were swimsuit models or something. They had to pose in bikinis on pretty beaches. Now that would play to the production’s strengths. Heck, they could still be volleyball players but the practicing and the matches happen offscreen.

Maybe one of them got into a car accident and is in a wheelchair now and they need money for an operation so they’re putting together a charity swimsuit calendar. Bam! Now you have a super consistent plot reason for the melodrama, the variety of skimpy bikinis, the posing and the girls constantly adjusting each others’… bikinis.

Guys I’m a genius – call me C2C

I like this sport.

We’re introduced to two new girls, foreign exchange students Claire and Emily Thomas from somewhere… (don’t know if they’re British, American or maybe even Australian?) and almost immediately I liked these girls a lot. They’ve got a lot of personality and they’re just a lot of fun! They’re blonde and one’s rowdy. The reminded me of a couple of sisters I knew in college that would compete to see how many drinks they could get some poor dude to buy them in an evening. I think they both have kids now. I have no feelings for these characters.

This episode kinda felt more like a slice of life, cute girls doing cute things show–especially the first half so obviously I was loving every minute of that.

I expect the show is going to get a lot more serious about the sport now that they’re going to enter a tournament–and hopefully for you more fast-paced Volleyball action! Maybe. I sort of hope they pick up on my suggested storyline. Or they go full hentai.

That flashback to Kanata and Narumi versing Claire and Emily in grade school was interesting… if only because for some reason Claire and Emily were rocking C-cups, not sure the writer of this series knows how puberty works. I’ll give the writer’s a pass. Lot’s of girls develop early and they weren’t overtly sexualizing the 7 year olds so that was fine.

Good genes.

Also that other flashback to Kanata and Narumi becoming friends was nice–though it makes me feel especially bad for Narumi, they were so close and now they’re basically bitter rivals (well as close as a show like this will have two girls be bitter rivals, which is to say hardly at all). I thought it was cute but the drama still feels ridiculously exaggerated. Maybe it’s on purpose. It’s a parody and it’s supposed to be ridiculous and funny. In which case I’m interested to see where it goes.

Simpler times…

Overall I was happy with this episode. What about you? It seems more of the same. A continuation of episode 2 with new charas. I didn’t see anything new this week. I think they may still be building towards something but I have a feeling 12 episodes may not be enough. We’ll see. If we go with the moe/ecchi sports subgenre this one is my least favorite. I really liked ping pong girls and preferred the horsies. I also thought Yuru Camp was a better show but I like this one better because camping is extremely boring to me. Keijo is still the best sports anime FYI. *runs away into the woods* I haven’t seen it but a lot of people like it. It looks funny. At least it’s not pretending to be something it’s not which is nice.

And that’s episode 3, join us for the next episode on Irina’s blog next week!

Previous Harukana Receive Reviews:

The Nicest Receive – Episode 1 Review
Sundrenched Tears – Episode 2 Review

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The Nicest Receive – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 1 Review with Irina & Matt

The Nicest Receive – ‘Harukana Receive’ Episode 1 Review with Irina & Matt

So here we are with another seasonal long collab review with me, Cactus Matt and Irina of I Drink And Watch Anime! Say hi, Irina!

Hi all, guess who picks our anime reviews – go on…guess… There’s an “a” in the name.

Last season we reviewed all of Uma Musume, a kind of but not really sports anime–I mean it was more of a slice of life with ~elements~ of sports, but what was it you said that it lacked that sense of teamwork?

Anyway, we’re not here to talk about horse girls, we’re here to talk about an “actual” sports* anime(?), I mean it’s at least about a sport that exists! I’m talking about Beach Volleyball and the anime is Harukana Receive! For those of you out there reading this who don’t know, Irina is a BIG sports anime fan, whereas I… well not so much…

In fact Irina absolutely adores Haikyuu!! cause she’s basic AF. So at the very least I have a pretty solid understanding of volleyball basics and an actual interest in the game (unlike horse racing). So this is already an upgrade from last season, right!?!

I was looking forward to this anime probably more than any other this year, so naturally my expectations were sky high, you however not so high, I mean would you have even watched this show were it not for our collab?

SPOILERS: I would have watched the first episode…well half. I think the sand CG might have convinced me to call it a day. As you know I really liked scorching ping pong girls and I was hoping for something like that. Who knows, it may pick up…

She’s got good ball skills.

What did you think of our protagonist? I thought she was cute and nice… I have a feeling you’ll have some ~things~ to say about those traits…

Nope I also have zero other thoughts than cute and nice. Oh wait I think someone said she’s also tall.

I love that she is insecure about how tall she is–although it only came up like once or twice, I assume they’ll continue with that once she actually gets to school. I guess that’s the problem with starting an anime in ‘Summer Vacation’ it’s difficult to know what kind of show it’s going to be going forward.

Right she’s tall.

These girls are cute, wonder if they’ll feature again or were just here to establish our protagonist is “tall”.

I think I like the other girls more, her cousin Kanata has a lot of depth to her character–or so it will revealed in later episodes if that scene in front of the family shrine is anything to go by.

Man, mothers of moe sports anime leads do NOT fare well. I mean anime mothers in general have it pretty rough but it seems if you have a young daughter whose particularly athletically skilled, you might as well start smoking and drinking like a fish cause you should at least have some fun while you can.

I also like Narumi, she’s serious business and I can appreciate that plus the complexities of her presumably being Kanata’s ex-Volleyball partner.

Narumi has her game face on!

To be honest they all sort of seem like cute girl stereotypes to me. Interchangeable with all the other cute girl casts. I thought the pretty derby girls where at least a bit more striking at first sight. Of course this is just the first episode, it’s normal that they haven’t been established yet. I look forward to seeing how that complexity develops.

I know nothing about beach volleyball, I’m glad they went into a little detail about how things are different from regular volleyball (which I also know little about–except what I learnt from one season of Haikyuu!)

See above… I also did play a little years ago. It’s a very difficult sport. I’m not sure whether it was to emphasize the dampening effect of the sand but the actual gameplay animation was super slow. If it’s on purpose it’s an interesting device but a little unfair. Believe me, volleyball, beach or otherwise, is a lot more dynamic than that and you can’t get away with just moving your arms a little to return the ball.

What brand is the ball? I can’t quite make it out…

It’s interesting that we’re starting at almost square one with Haruka, like she says she’s sporty and she’s obviously got some inbuilt talent (plus being tall helps) but other than that there’s a long road ahead if this is going to be an anime about becoming “the best” which I assume it is–isn’t that the goal of all sports animes? You’re the expert after all!

Most shows that need to establish a complex universe with rules (like a specific sport for instance) usually have a newbie as a prominent member of the cast to serve as an audience surrogate. Basically, aside from Haikyuu!!, KnB And Pretty Derby, all the main charas I can think of are new to the sport or at least to the competitive aspect of it.

Otherwise you usually have a fan, close friend, manager that needs to have the game explained to them.


As for being “the best”, sure being your personal best is a common theme but a lot of sports anime are actually more team based so it’s about winning that tournament or getting that trophy as a team. Helping out your friends and achieving something together that’s more than you could by yourself…

Whether it was my elevated expectations or perhaps it was just a slower episode as we’re still getting to know these characters and setting and what not I wasn’t blown away by the episode. I still enjoyed it plenty, but I think the show’s going to have to show off either some serious beach volleyball action, some serious rivalry or some serious character development/depth if it wants to position itself as a contender to male-oriented sports anime. Or maybe it doesn’t want to do that? Maybe it just wants to be cute girls in bikinis doing sporty and sweaty things on the beach, maybe it’ll leave the heavy lifting to Hanebado!?

Is this another mobile game commercial? It feels like it’s selling something to me. There wasn’t anything wrong with the episode but there also just wasn’t that much going on. Like you said, it’s just a first episode so we really can’t judge much.

It’s based on a manga! A manga I intend to purchase as soon as it’s released in English!

All she wants to do is give it a head pat!

All I can say about it is that this was pretty much what I expected but not as funny. This is really a bit more on the dramatic side of the spectrum so far.

And that’s Episode 1 done and dusted, seems like we’re pretty much on the same page with regards to the episode, I’m probably a little more positive on it in general but that’s probably got something to do with all those cute girls in bikinis… Join us next week on Irina’s site for Episode 2 and it will alternate back and forth for the rest of the season!

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Last Period: the journey to the end of the despair Episode 8 – Anime QandA Review

An Anime QandA review for Last Period: the journey to the end of the despair Episode 8

What’s the show? Last Period: the journey to the end of the despair, Episode 8.

And what’s this episode about?

Umm, you just posted a picture you didn’t answer my question…

You did it again? You know you can’t just keep posting im—

And now you’re inter—

Hey! Stop i—

If you don’t stop with all these—

I’m warning y—

Seriously! Are you going to tell me what this episode is about or not?! …I would have thought that’d I’d made that abundantly clear at this point… It’s a beach episode! And quite possibly the most “beach episode” beach episode I’ve ever seen. Actually scratch that, it’s the most ‘Last Period’-ish beach episode I’ve ever seen.

And what does that mean exactly? It’s strange and silly and filled with irreverent humour and very specific references and commits to it all fully and with such a sense of reckless joy!

Uh-huh. And it also introduces literally 22 new female characters (or so says a Reddit post) for the sole purpose of having them appear in bikinis. If that isn’t commitment to delivering a satisfying beach episode then I don’t know what is!

22 new characters? Are you kidding me?! Remember this show is based on a gacha-style mobile game! All these girls would be unlockable characters in the game so all the show is doing is giving fans of the game the chance to see their favourite characters relaxing by the beach in skimpy bikinis! It’s a win-win for fans of the game and casuals like myself who have no knowledge of the series! It’s fan-service fan-service, or ‘fan-serception’.

Right. And so is girls in bikini’s all this episode has to offer? Oh ye, of little faith, I said it was a ‘Last Period’-ish beach episode did I not? It has one of the best purely ~visual~ gags I’ve seen from this show, I wouldn’t even do it justice if I tried to explain but let’s just say it’s very reminiscent of the Looney Tunes only a bit more adult…

Anything else? Oh you know, monsters possessing swimsuits, shark-attacks, references to North Korean military aggression, you know the usual anime beach episode fare.

…Great, uh, so I guess this episode comes recommended then? Yep! Bye!

Previous Last Period: the journey to the end of the despair Reviews:

Episode 1 Review
Episode 2 & 3 Review
Episode 4 & 5 Review
Episode 6 Review
Episode 7 Review

If you liked my review and want to support my content, please consider supporting my Patreon page, or donating by buying me a coffee on Ko-fi!



Comic Girls Episode 5 – Anime QandA Review

An Anime QandA review for Comic Girls, Episode 5.

What’s the show? Comic Girls, Episode 5.

Last week you commended the show’s unexpected depth and maturity in dealing with a plot line regarding a character’s insecurities about her appearance when it came to meeting with her readers for the first time. How do things progress from there? It’s a beach episode!

Breast girl. I mean best girl!

*face palm* So much for that I guess… Among beach episodes I must say this ranks along the very best, it continued the thread of dealing with Ruki’s insecurities—albeit in a much more comedic fashion—as well as dealing with the fact that three out of the four girl’s aren’t really that much into the outdoors. It kind of reminded me of the riverbank episode of Blend-S in that respect.

Who knew beach episode’s could be so educational!

Uh-huh, I’m sure all of 5 people will get that reference, but sure. So is this just a light-hearted episode to indulge in some bikini related fan-service? Oh no, quite the contrary! Only about the first third of the episode takes place at the beach, the rest of the episode gives us some phenomenal character development for the busty blonde Koyume, who—during a shopping trip with Ruki—admits that she has strong feelings for boyish Tsubasa. Feelings she wants to actively pursue!

Seems like a contradiction. Oh you mean in that way.

Oh! I didn’t realise it was that kind of show? Nor did I, but that’s what makes it so great and organic. Like, obviously Koyume showed an interest in Tsubasa in previous episodes but it was the kind of thing that could be written off as ‘comedic’ or at the very most ‘a casual crush’. But in this episode Koyume talks about wanting to date her and wanting her “first relationship” to be with “someone special” like her. It’s all very sweet and honest and personal.


So what happens? Well, after some ‘meddling’ from the dorm’s housemother in the form of two “soon to be expired” theme park tickets, Koyume and Tsubasa go on a “date”. Of course, it’s only a one-sided date because Koyume hasn’t confessed anything toward Tsubasa. During the day the couple are shadowed by the other Comic Girls and the housemother who are secretly keeping tabs on the progress of the date, all the while rooting for them to get together!

Roller Coaster’s have never been so fun!

And do they? Well, after an almost confession in a ride queue they board the ferris wheel for a sunset ride, everything is perfect for an unforgettable romantic moment, but!

But?! But it’s just not the right time… Koyume makes some of her feelings known, namely that she respects Tsubasa so much, but Tsubasa being wholly unfamiliar with the romantic world misconstrues her comments to being about the fact that Koyume is yet to have a serialized manga project. She gets a gentle pat on the head and some thoughtful words, and while their friendship is no doubt stronger, the romantic prospects are on halt—at least for the moment.

Just kiss!

Well that seems like a bit of a let down… In a way I suppose, it’s still early on and I can see them returning to this plot-line later. I am glad that, everyone was so supportive of the idea of their relationship though. Koyume aired some initial concerns about “being attracted to a woman” and whether that was “normal”, i.e. the usual yuri anime comments. But Ruki was quick to tell her there was absolutely nothing wrong with it, which was deeply appreciated.

No context.

Cool, so how’s this episode compare to the others? While not as immediately different as the previous episode was, it still had a certain no-nonsense quality to how certain Koyume was of her feelings for Tsubasa and that they surpassed a mere crush. That plot line aside it was as funny and well-written as the previous ones and added much needed interactions between characters that—up to this point—had had little screen-time one-on-one. Usually when it comes to slice of life/cute girls doing cute things anime, I’ll be fairly sure of my feelings for a show by the second or third episode, but this show, which started out as just “very good” has quickly become a contender for one of my favourite of the genre!

Tsubasa doesn’t like to lose at fighting games!

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