“We will part ways eventually, but we will always be the Golden Pair.”
– Oishi to Eiji
Ahhh..the feels! Watching The New Prince of Tennis definitely ignited the anime freak in me! Moreover, it gave me the urge to write a blog again after months of hiatus.
Real talk. Any anime freak would totally understand why at some point we cry while watching our favorite animes – be it because of the scene, the lines, the background music, the characters themselves or whatever reason we may have. As for me, seeing the members of Seishun Academy together again just melts my heart – how the Senpais always look after Ryoma-san and how the latter shows his appreciation and love to his seniors in a subtle way, such scenes will always be my favorite.
I couldn’t be more grateful to my brother for downloading the first 13 episodes of The New Prince of Tennis. Gaaaah! I realized I miss watching this anime so much! It feels like meeting a long lost love! (LOL!) Seeing Echizen Ryoma with the whole gang makes me so happy! What’s even better is the addition of really interesting characters here and the fact that I’m getting to know more of the players from other middle schools like Sanada, Atobe, Kintaro-chan, Yukimura and the likes. It’s really great!
I had a lot of favorite scenes from episodes 1- 13. First in the list of course, is about Echizen Ryoma. It was during the 1st episode entitled The Return of the Prince (this is the only episode title I remembered out of the 13 episodes. Hehe! ) Here, we can see that the Seishun Academy Varsity Tennis Team was invited to join the U-17 Training Camp – this includes the Captain, Kunimitsu Tezuka, the Vice Captain Shuichiro Oishi, Shusuke Fuji, Eiji Kikumaru, Takashi Kawamura, Sadaharu Inui, Takeshi Momoshiro and Kaoru Kaidoh. Ryoma was missing in action at first (he was in the opening scene though, where he showcased his awesome tennis moves in order to catch the train) but his entrance in the training camp was undoubtedly the best and the welcome hugs of his Senpais is just the cutest!
At first, I thought that only the Seishun Academy Varsity Tennis Team got invited in the camp, but it turns out that other promising players from their rival schools were also invited. To name a few, we have Kippei Tachibana from Fudoumine; Jin Akutsu from Yamabuki; Keigo Atobe and Wakashi Hiyoshi from Hyoutei Academy; Seiichi Yukimura and Genichiro Sanada from Rikkaidai and many others. If I remember it correctly, there were a total of 50 middle school players invited in this camp. It’s really a good move for the writers of this anime to not only focus on the Seishun Academy players this time around (I can say I grew up watching this anime, alongside Dragon Ball, Detective Conan, Slam Dunk and many others, so the characters of Ryoma, Tezuka and the other Seishun varsity players are very familiar to me) and I couldn’t be any happier that the story flow is like this.
It’s very heartwarming to see how Atobe encouraged Tezuka (and not to forget the former Seishun Team Captain as well, Yudai Yamato, during their match) to pursue his dreams of becoming a professional tennis player. It’s already within reach since the German tennis team recruited him. Captain Tezuka is someone who never backs out of a game, would risk his life to win the game for his team and someone who gives solid support to his members. He always puts the interests of the team first before his. He’s the Pillar of the Seishun Academy Tennis Team for a reason. So yeah, it’s really good to finally see him take the first step towards his dreams. Atobe got his back, so I’m sure he won’t fail Tezuka. 🙂 (Even though I’m really sad to see him go because that means several episodes without Tezuka, but yeah, I’m happier than sad.)
I also like the couple of episodes where Ryoma together with Kintaro and the other “losers” (they were the ones who got beaten by their partners in what turned out to be a singles match instead of doubles) trained for several days under Coach Nyudo. Ryoma and Kintaro had different opponents though – not their co-middle schoolers, but the high school tennis monsters who go by the names Tokugawa and Juijiroh Oni respectively. It’s fun to see Kintaro always tagging along Koshimae-san aka Ryoma. Even though Ryoma always tell him to go away, when it comes to playing tennis, they just automatically agree with it. They may be the youngest in the bunch but man, they have the guts to challenge anyone especially these high school tennis monsters. 🙂
With Echizen Ryoma inspiring everyone else to give their best in the training under Coach Nyudo and with Rikkaidai’s Vice Captain Sanada’s leadership as well, these so-called losers were able to rise from the grave clad in Black Jerseys (how can these middle school athletes look so cool in these jerseys? Oh I know..you know 🙂 ). They challenged Court 2 group and didn’t even drop a game in all their matches. Now that’s how you do a comeback huh! Court 2 Leader Migihashi gave Ryoma a hard time at first but ‘shorty’ yet again, improved drastically within the game and eventually brought the former to his knees.
The rest of the Seishun Team (Ryoma, Kaido, Oishi, Inui, Taka and Momo) soon found out about Captain Tezuka’s departure for Germany. Kaido was irritated at first because they all agreed to finish the camp together but later on understood why the Captain had to leave. I love what Fuji said to comfort his members, “Even if we’re far apart, we’ll always be united by Tennis.” Oishi also added, “As long as we keep on playing tennis, we’ll definitely see him again.” I am very much certain that they will all meet Captain Tezuka again in the future.
Kikumaru’s reaction upon seeing Oishi back in the camp was also priceless! (Ahhh, the Golden Pair. I hope I get to see more of their matches in the coming episodes.)
So there, the 13th episode’s final minutes showed the epic rematch between Ryoma and Tokugawa. That match was beyond compare! I tell you, it’s amazing!!
Let’s not forget Ryoma’s trademark line too… (A big thank you to the writers for including this line in the most important part of the episode!)
The end…for now. 🙂
(Photos used are not mine, credits to their rightful owners)