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HAIKYU‼ TO THE TOP Episode #14 Anime Review

5 min read
It has been a long six-month wait. I'm HYPED! Are you!?
© 2018 H. Furudate / Shueisha, ”HAIKYU!!” Project, MBS

“Rhythm”

What They Say:
The Karasuno High School Volleyball Club finally won their way into the nationals after an intense battle for the Miyagi Prefecture Spring Tournament qualifiers. As they were preparing for the nationals, Kageyama is invited to go to All-Japan Youth Training Camp. At the same time, Tsukishima is invited to go to a special rookie select training camp for first-years in Miyagi Prefecture. Hinata feels panic that he’s being left behind as one of the first-years and then decides to show up at the Miyagi Prefecture rookie select training camp anyway… As they prepare for the nationals, Hinata, Kageyama, and the rest of the Karasuno High School Volleyball team get ready to face some new challenges!!

The Review:
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Atsumu continues to show why he’s considered the best high school setter in Japan. He makes a nice pass to Aran who smashes it for the kill. The Inarizaki crowd starts cheering for Aran and Atsumu teases him a bit. The Inarizaki crowd sure is loud. You love to see that kind of enthusiasm for your team. It probably annoys the heck out of the opponents though. Karasuno is feeling the pressure! Luckily for them, they get back in the game when Kageyama and Hinata connect with their famous slide attack. Atsumu thinks that their attack was super cool! His brother, Osamu, isn’t amused. They’re trying to win this game, you know?

© 2018 H. Furudate / Shueisha, ”HAIKYU!!” Project, MBS

A team’s fans can be considered the 7th player on the court for a volleyball team. They can indirectly affect how the game goes. In the case of the Inarizaki cheering section, they decide to change their rhythm around to throw Karasuno off their game. And you know what? It works. Kageyama makes a bad serve which leads to Inarizaki getting a point thanks to another great Atsumu set. Karasuno gets that point right back with a nice kill from Tanaka. They won’t go down without a fight! Sadly, Tanaka messes up his serve and hits nothing but net. The Inarizaki crowd ruined his rhythm. They’re playing a huge part in this game so far. What can Karasuno do about it? Is there anything they can do?

© 2018 H. Furudate / Shueisha, ”HAIKYU!!” Project, MBS

Don’t worry, Karasuno! Saeko has got your back. She arrives with the Karasuno cheering squad. They’re here to fight fire with fire. And even better, they’re doing it with flutes and taiko drums! Now that’s cool. Tanaka’s sister is awesome. Hinata and Nishinoya agree with me. Heck, they almost die because of her awesomeness. That’s a new one, haha. I’m just glad Saeko made it in time. Well, she’s actually a bit late. She was probably up late and drinking. She confirms this to be true but that’s not why she was late. She simply got lost. That seems legit. Regardless, their presence is welcomed. Maybe now Karasuno can find their rhythm. After getting a point back, Hinata is up to serve. He’s feeling very excited right now. He feels like he can hit the best serve in the world right now! He proceeds to hit a completely normal one, haha. Good ol’ Hinata. Inarizaki sends the ball back over the net and it’s heading right at Hinata. He’s positioned perfectly to receive it…but the ball ends up going through his hands and bounces off his foot. Hey, it still counts! It’s a bit embarrassing but it’s better than losing the point!

© 2018 H. Furudate / Shueisha, ”HAIKYU!!” Project, MBS

Karasuno does manage to score the point and it looks like they’re getting back in rhythm. Inarizaki gets that point right back though. And unfortunately, Atsumu is serving next. It’s going to be tough figuring out which type of serve he’s planning to use. It’s only a problem if you don’t know what type of serve is coming. Coach Ukai has done his research and discovered that the number of steps Atsumu takes determines what type of serve he’s going for. If he takes four steps, it’s going to be a jump floater. If he takes six steps, he’s going for a spike serve. This is valuable information! It always pays to do your research. Atsumu takes four steps and Karasuno knows he’s going for a jump floater. But even though they knew what was coming, they couldn’t stop him from getting a service ace. They do manage to return his next serve though. Atsumu decides to show everyone just how good he is and makes a picture-perfect set to his brother that silences the entire arena. Not only that, that attack just now was similar to Kageyama and Hinata’s freak quick attack. Things are heating up!

© 2018 H. Furudate / Shueisha, ”HAIKYU!!” Project, MBS

In Summary:
And we’re back! It has been a long six-month wait. I’m HYPED! Are you!? As the title of this episode suggests, it’s all about that rhythm. It’s actually quite important, you know? Establishing a good rhythm means you’re dictating a good tempo and pace. If you’re able to do that, you have a very good chance of winning. And we can’t talk about rhythm without talking about the fans that attend the games. All that cheering, booing, and loud noises can really affect the rhythm of the players. Sometimes positively, other times negatively. For example, there are players that get confidence boosts from being cheered. On the other hand, there are players who are distracted by any noise and would prefer silence. It all depends on the situation and each individual player. That being said, Karasuno is going to have to find their rhythm if they want to defeat Inarizaki. I have faith in them!

Grade: B+

Streamed By: Crunchyroll, VRV

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