Pure Insanity – Blue Lock Ep 1 Review 

Yoichi Isagi dreams of becoming Japan’s Best Striker. He receives an invitation to the Blue Lock Project and jumps at the opportunity despite its pure insanity.

Blue Lock episode one was pure insanity and I enjoyed every minute of it. 

I went into this anime blind, only knowing that it was a sports anime meant to parody shonen series that take the ‘Power of Friendship’ tropes too far.  

After watching what I thought would be a simple team-building sports anime turn into an elite battle royal with added commentary on Japanese society, I admit I was pleasantly surprised. 

I feel like this show just took the Power of Friendship’s lunch money and brought every single curry pan in the school cafeteria with it. 

Blue Lock Episode 1 Review 

Our sociopathic host Jinpachi Ego proclaims: the Japan National Football Team gets along great – and that is in turn why they will never win the World Cup. 

“One for All. All for One.” 

A Coach with a Losing Mentality

There is no denying that if Isagi had just kept the ball and scored instead of Tada-chan, Ichinan most likely would have won and gone to nationals. Isagi clearly wanted the glory of scoring the winning goal but thought it would not be right to “steal” the team’s victory.  

Moments later, their coach reminds Isagi that there is no I in Team which reaffirms his decision to pass the ball. 

Clearly upset over losing, Isagi compartmentalizes his rage after unleashing it publicly and scaring a bunch of innocent middle school passersby. We then learn Isagi’s backstory, and the top soccer player he idolizes: Noel Noa. 

Europe's Best Player Noel Noa
Europe’s Best Player Noel Noa

Feeling completely dejected, Isagi is surprised to receive a letter inviting him to the mystery Blue Lock Project event for soccer forwards.  

This is where the real fun begins. 

Conforming in Japanese Society 

300 intense soccer strikers gathered in one room for the Blue Lock Project
300 intense soccer strikers gathered in one room for the Blue Lock Project

Ego introduces himself and reflects on assembling 300 youth soccer players who could be the number one Striker in Japan. As he goes on with his speech, Isagi and the other boys clearly know what he is saying is right but don’t want to appear ‘selfish’ to the group’s desires. 

(I like the stylistic choice of ego or jealousy rising in Isagi is being characterized by black smoke clouding his internal desires. )  

As Ego goes on, local golden boy Kira Ryosuke decides to openly protest his philosophy and preach the Power of Friendship to the choir. It works, and the boys all chime in claiming Ego is insane and are about to leave until Ego describes the exact scenario that happened to Isagi during the prefectural game. 

Of course, the moment he decided to pass instead of taking the shot has played on Isagi’s mind on repeat since the match ended. Wanting to change his life, Isagi is the first boy to rush forward and take Ego’s deal. 

Kira Ryosuke conforms and joins the crowd by accepting the project he initially opposed
Kira Ryosuke conforms and joins the crowd by accepting the project he initially opposed

Seeing that they are not the first ones to ‘go against the group’ the boys all rush through the open doors beyond the stage in order to join the Blue Lock Project.  

Despite initially being against it, Ryosuke doesn’t want to lose out on the opportunity or lose face as the only athlete who turned the project down so he rushes along with the rest of the crowd. 

The Arbitrary Player Rankings 

Ego said the rankings were arbitrary, but I think Isagi was in Room Z and number 299 because he is still pretending to be a selfless player and has the most work to ‘undo’ in order to ‘release his ego’.  

This would also make sense if the strongest player at Blue Lock was indeed Ryosuke who was listed as number 300 because he is a team player through and through. 

The Blue Lock Project seems to be half social experiment and half intensive motivational soccer camp and I am excited to see what chaos next week holds. 

But, tell me your thoughts. 

There can only be 1 player who makes it to the top of Blue Lock Project...will it be Isagi?
There can only be 1 player who makes it to the top of Blue Lock Project…will it be Isagi?

Who is currently your favorite player in Room Z? 

Do you think the boys will work together well? 

Do Isagi’s parents know he left on a bus to live at a shady soccer camp without signing any sort of permission slip or giving parental consent? 

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below, we’d love to hear from you! Also, be sure to follow us for more Blue Lock Episode Reviews and Discussions!        

次のエピソード: The Monster Within   

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☆ In Asian Spaces     

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Author: In Asian Spaces

I write in my personal time and I haven't published much at all. I don't know if that qualifies me as a writer or not, but I'd like to change that. I have a deep passion for travel, cinema and (mainly) East Asian things, but I plan on writing various things to keep it spicy. Let's prosper together ~ よろしくおねがいします。

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