is one of the earlier sports anime and Spiritual Successor
to Attack No. 1
and is equally centred around a female volley-ball team.
You Hazuki is a feisty and insistant Passionate Sports Girl
, specialized in volley ball, who comes to Tokyo to live with her father and her adoptive brother, Sunny. She gets trained by the abusive and tough as nails coach of the feminine team called 7 fighters
, Daimon. Despite her rocky debut, she soon becomes one of the top players of her team and gets the attention of the media and many high-ranking national coaches. Her biggest wish is to become part of the National Team and compete in the Olympic Games of Seoul.
Along the way, You meets Nami Hayase, a co-player with whom she forms a lasting friendship. She also meets Eri Takigawa, her arch-rival with whom she has a Worthy Opponent
/ Friendly Rivalry
thing going on.
In addition, she's trying to get the attention of Sho Takiki
, the head player of the masculine team, on whom she has an enormous crush and who is also the object of Nami's affactions.
The show is typical of the 80's sports animes (such as Captain Tsubasa
) and, true to its nature, it garnered its main success in Europe, especially France, Italy and Spain
. Even though it is considered a classic in its native Japan, its fame up there is nowhere near as big as it is in the aforementioned countries.
In 2008, a sequel named "New Attacker You" was realized, 24 years after the first airing. It has some of the old show's main characters (You, Eri, Nami, Sho, coach Daimon, coach Mitamura), but all of them (even You) are largely Out of Focus
in favor of the new characters, and with totally different personalities (especially You), to the point of being a sequel In Name Only
The show provides examples of:
- Alpha Bitch: Nami, specially at the start. She mellows down later.
- Arrogant Volley-Ball Girl: Quite a few but the most prominents are Monia and Yuria.
- The Bechdel Test: The show is one of the earliest depictions of how friendship between women works in a sports setting.
- Big Eater: Both Yugina and You. It even becomes a plot point.
- Big Sister Worship: Sunny towards You.
- Bowdlerize: The Italian and French dubs cut some scenes where Daimon applied Corporal Punishment to his pupils, as well as some shower scenes. Curiously, the Spanish dub didn't censor anything.
- Butt Monkey: Yugina, though the writers throw her a bone from time to time.
- Canon Foreigner: Sunny and You's Missing Mom only appear in the anime.
- Character Exaggeration: You wasn't that Hot-Blooded in the original manga.
- Cheerful Child: Sunny, to the point of being rather annoying sometimes.
- Clingy Jealous Girl: You towards Sho, sometimes verging on Stalker with a Crush.
- Cool Big Sis: How Sunny sees You.
- Corporal Punishment: Daimon, in the anime. Specially seen when he slaps each girl across the face merely for letting a rival team score a single point.
- Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass:
- You starts as this, but gradually evolves into The Ace.
- Yugina has her moments.
- Defeat Means Friendship: Many times, You's opponents end up befriending her after getting defeated.
- Defrosting Ice Queen: Nami.
- Determinator: Pretty much everyone, but You is easily the biggest example.
- Drill Sergeant Nasty: Coach Daimon. It should be noticed that he was much nastier in the anime than in the manga.
- Fat Girl: Played straight with Yugina. Even though she's supposedly skilled enough to join a professional team, her inability to lose weight gets her consistently sidelined. See below.
- Fiery Redhead: You, even more so in the anime than in the manga. Mostly averted with Eri, though.
- Follow the Leader: The series owes a lot to Attack No. 1.
- Friendly Rivalry: Eri and You are rather cordial and loyal to each other, despite being rivals in the stadium. In the end, both end up as team mates in the Olympic team.
- Funny Foreigner: Averted with Heinz and Crosby, two players of a very powerful team known as Saiei, who are treated as rather serious threats to the 7 fighters team due to their size and power.
- Genki Girl: You, especially in the beginning.
- Hands-Off Parenting: You's mother.
- Invincible Hero: Aside from a few meaningless exceptions, You rarely loses. Very, very rarely.
- Jerkass: Quite a few characters deserve to be mentioned, but Coach Daimon is a particularly nasty one.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Nami obviously, but actually almost everyone who is initially mean and condescending towards You later shows a nice side as well. See Defeat Means Friendship.
- Love Triangle: You, Sho, and Nami.
- Missing Mom: You's mother left the family a long time ago. She's actually Kanako Tajima, the volleyball commentator and ex-player that You fangirls.
- Opposing Sports Team: Mainly the aforementioned Saiei team, whose members are nothing but a bunch of bitchy, arrogant and contemptuous assholes who love nothing more than belittling their opponents.
- Red Oni, Blue Oni: Even the hair color matches their personalities. The redheaded You is a Hot-Blooded Genki Girl, while the blue-haired Nami is much more calm and serious.
- Passionate Sports Girl: You, Eri and Nami are obvious examples but most of the named characters count at some level.
- Secondary Character Title: Played ridiculously straight in the Italian dub. In Italy the anime is known as Mila and Shiro, the "Italian" names of You and Sho. Even though he is You's Love Interest, Sho is a minor character at best and his name certainly doesn't deserve to be in the title along with the protagonist.
- Shy Blue-Haired Girl: Averted with Nami who is rather confident and serious.
- Skilled, but Na´ve: Played totally straight with You in the beginning, being a naturally talented volleyball player, but also very inexperienced and clumsy. She gets better.
- Team Spirit: The whole show is mainly about this and often makes individualists "pay" for their selfishness.
- Underdogs Never Lose: Inverted. Yugina, the local Fat Girl of the team is also the least likely to be successful, mostly because her weight hinders her moves. Made all the more ironic since her sister, who is part of the Saiei team, is just as pudgy as she is but far more talented.
- What Happened to the Mouse?: Do you remember Meiko/"Chibi", You's best friend (as well as teammate) in Hikawa High School? She abruptly disappears after You joins a professional team. To a lesser extent, there's Sho, You's love interest, who is eventually Demoted to Extra, but unlike Meiko he still makes occasional appearances and is sometimes mentioned by You.
- Worthy Opponent: Eri to You, big time. Both harbor a deep respect for each other despite being arch-rivals in the stadium.
- Would Hit a Girl: Daimon has no problems with it at all.
- You Gotta Have Blue Hair: Nami
The 2008 sequel provides examples of:
- The Ace: Tan Tan Chung, the team's main rival and apparently one of the most talented players in the country.
- Alpha Bitch:
- Catherine in the first episodes, but she later evolves into a Lovable Alpha Bitch.
- Tan Tan, even more so. She's never shown being anything other than unpleasant, until the last episode. She has a Freudian Excuse though.
- Ascended Extra: Zigzagged with Sho Takiki. In the old show he only appears in a few episodes, while in this sequel he's assistant coach and appears in all of them. On the other hand, in the original series he was You's Love Interest and she was crazy about him, especially in the early episodes. In this sequel You couln't care less about him, and most of the time they don't even talk.
- Big Eater: Glin (unsurprisingly since she's a You expy), and Ming Hua.
- Glin is one of You in almost every way. She gets the most focus, is one of the best players on the team, and even has You's personality and some of her old quirks (Big Eater, Genki Girl). You is... just there and nothing more than a Flat Character and Standardized Leader.
- There's always a Cheerful Child Tagalong Kid around, who is clearly an Expy of You's little brother Sunny (Sunny himself only makes a cameo appearance in one episode, along with You's father).
- Ensemble Cast: This is the main difference between the old series (focusing on just one person) and this sequel (focusing on the entire team). In the old series You is the main character in every single episode, everything is from her point of view and we don't even know the names of most of her teammates. In this sequel everyone in the team is a well-developed character and gets a significant amount of focus.
- Flat Character: You, of all people. Also Sho, Eri and Nami.
- French Jerk: Catherine is French and very bitchy compared to her teammates, though she's kind of a Lovable Alpha Bitch.
- Gentle Giant: Ming Hua is a female example.
- Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Catherine and Jin Mei.
- In Name Only: It's completely different from the original show.
- Non-Standard Character Design: Ming Hua looks very different from the other girls. She's very huge, masculine and lacks the Generic Cuteness of everyone else.
- Older and Wiser: In the original series You was always a pretty goofy character who provides plenty of funny moments with her antics. Now she's always mature and serious, and her comic relief role is given to new unofficial protagonist Glin instead (although Glin isn't as goofy as original You).
- Out-of-Character Moment: Glin gets the Jerkass Ball in one episode. She was always portrayed as a perfectly nice person and supportive of her teammates. In one of the later episodes, a new girl joins the team and Glin suddenly turns into an Alpha Bitch and starts picking on the Na´ve Newcomer only because she's a "mediocre player". At the end of the episode she apologizes and makes up with the new girl, but still...
- Out of Focus: The characters of the original series, You, Nami and Eri. They are still there but overall they get less focus and development than the new characters.
- Secondary Character Title: You. She's not the protagonist at all, all the girls in the team share this role (though Glin has a more central position than the rest and many see her as the unofficial protagonist).
- Worthy Opponent: Tan Tan, to the whole team, but especially Glin.