- Title: Grand Blue
- Genre: Slice of life, Comedy, Seinen
- Studios: Zero-G
- Episodes: 12 – 24min (Completed)
- Date: 14 July 2018 — 29 September 2018
- Adaptation: Manga
Iori Kitahara moves to the coastal town of Izu for his freshman year at its university, taking residence above Grand Blue, his uncle’s scuba diving shop. Iori has high hopes and dreams about having the ideal college experience, but when he enters the shop he is sucked into the alcoholic activities of the carefree members of the Diving Club who frequent the place. Persuaded by upperclassmen Shinji Tokita and Ryuujirou Kotobuki, Iori reluctantly joins their bizarre party. His cousin Chisa Kotegawa later walks in and catches him in the act, earning Iori her utter disdain.
Based on Kenji Inoue and Kimitake Yoshioka’s popular comedy manga, Grand Blue follows Iori’s misadventures with his eccentric new friends as he strives to realize his ideal college dream, while also learning how to scuba dive.
Honestly, I didn’t think I would be writing a review about another college anime so soon, considering how scarce they are. But after Golden Time, I just felt like diving into a Grand Blue review. In the case of Grand Blue, its a more comical and recreational take on college life instead of the drama and romance in Golden Time. I first watched the anime expecting a dumpster of comedic nonsense with repeated gags and overused jokes, and I would honestly be quite okay with that. While there were indeed many of those, which were a ton of nonsensical fun, Grand Blue offered something more than just comedic relief.
Grand Blue is interesting because it manages to educate while being completely lunatic. Its a hot mess of endless laughter and shenanigans, but also balances it out with moments of seriousness at times. Even a sucker for comedy like me would get tired of the same old farce over and over again. Oh and if you were wondering what I meant by educate, Grand Blue is essentially a show revolving around diving. Yes, if u didn’t get my lame pun earlier on when I said “diving into Grand Blue”, I hope you get it now. Grand Blue occasionally teaches us the basics of diving like hand gestures, apparatus functions and safety regulations. All in such a way that blends in with their comedic stance, making learning thoroughly enjoyable. They even included a cute parody of one of anime’s classics. Let’s see if you’re able to guess the anime being referenced.
I’ll be honest, I learned many things I didn’t know about diving thanks to the anime. But the credit doesn’t go to just how entertaining it is alone, but also to the beautiful art and decent animation (other than one weird scene of the 4 of them walking but never mind that) that kept my eyes glued to the screen. Especially the art for the underwater scenes. The colors and the drawing were so well done that I was in awe. It made the world underwater appear very attractive and wonderful. You could tell that effort was put into the making of those scenes.
Grand Blue successfully pulls off the slice of life genre skillfully. Each episode is basically just 24 minutes of the characters fooling around while slowly moving toward the direction of its simple plot — to finally dive. Yet there isn’t a dull moment in the show. Even a simple moment like shopping can be filled with such glorious comedic value. I know that I sound like I’m labelling this show as a complete comedy, but I’ll reiterate that this show is able to entertain with more than just its comedy. There were many heartwarming moments and character development that give us more to follow than just mere comedy. There were even inspiring moments and lines in the anime that prove that the show has so much more than just comedy.
You always complain about things you’ve never even tried.Ryuujirou Kotobuki
I think the facial expressions in this anime deserve a paragraph on its own. They were abundant and effectively used to enhance any moment they appeared in. The unique facial expressions were able exaggerate comedic moments to make it more comical. They’re also used subtly in the smallest of moments to express the playfulness of the characters and were even able to be heartwarming and sweet too.
Should I watch Grand Blue?
Its important to note that Grand Blue’s sense of humor will not be able to please everyone. Its constant gags and forced jokes may not meet the standards of your own sense of humor (it met mine though). So I would suggest anyone interested to give the first episode or two a try to see if its something up your alley.
If you’re all in the clear for some “trashy” shenanigans and nonstop nonsense, then I highly doubt that this anime will disappoint you. The characters will surprise you by being mature and serious when it matters, so stop hesitating and give it a try.