Anime / Yuri!!! on Ice

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"We call everything on the ice 'love'."
Yuri Katsuki

Yuri!!! on Ice is an original anime directed by Sayo Yamamoto, who previously directed Michiko & Hatchin and Lupin III: The Woman Called Fujiko Mine. The screenplay and original character designs are by Mitsurou Kubo, creator of Again!! and Moteki.

Yuri Katsuki has always idolized famous Russian figure skater Victor Nikiforov, and dreams of one day being able to skate on the same ice as him. Unfortunately, when he finally gets his chance to do so, he messes up in his free skate, coming in dead last at the Grand Prix Finals in Sochi. To add insult to injury, similarly-named Russian junior champion Yuri Plisetsky tells him to just give up already.

In March the following year he returns to his hometown, unsure whether or not he really wants to quit figure skating altogether. When he goes to the local skating rink and perfectly imitates Victor's latest program, a video of him is uploaded to the internet and it goes viral, catching Victor's attention. Victor then shows up at Yuri's family hot spring, declaring that he will now be Yuri's coach for the upcoming Grand Prix.

The show is animated by MAPPA and aired as part of the Fall 2016 Anime season. It is available for worldwidenote  streaming on Crunchyroll here. Funimation has released an English broadcast dub for this series, which began on October 24, 2016. Watch it here.

A movie has been greenlit, and though details are still unknown, it's been confirmed that it won't be a Compilation Movie.

Along with Tiger Mask W, it's notable for being the first TV Asahi Late-Night Anime since From the New World.

Not to be confused with the Yuri Genre.

This series contains examples of:

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    A-E 
  • Adult Fear:
    • The very premise: that you work so hard to achieve your lifelong dream, only to fail when it counts, and to enter a downward spiral. Then you have to rebuild your life and figure out if you want to try again, to pursue your passion at the risk of failing a second time. At the start of the series, Yuri is Desperately Seeking A Purpose In Life as he wants to skate while he can, but he doesn't know what to do once his career ends.
    • The reason why Yuri ended up bombing at the previous Grand Prix Finals? His dog died while he was away from home. Then in the present, when Yuri hears from home that Victor's dog is in critical condition he immediately urges Victor to go back to Japan even though it means Victor won't be able to watch him perform.
  • Air Guitar: Minami briefly does this during his free program in Episode 5, which is fitting since the song he's skating to is a jazz number that includes the electric guitar.
  • All There in the Manual:
    • The official website for the anime provides background details on the various skaters, like how J.J. does volunteer work in the off-season and how Minami comes from a family of doctors.
    • The official guidebook, Yuri!!! on Life, provides even more background details, including a full list of program elements for Yuri, Victor, Yurio, Otabek, Christophe, J.J. and Phichit's short programs and free programs.
  • The Alleged Car: Yurio's grandfather's' beat-up old "Zaporozhets" (hunchback) note . It's a jalopy of such a caliber that you'd have to be really lucky to just see one on the streets today.
  • Always Identical Twins: Played straight with the Nishigori triplets, who look very similar to one another aside from a couple of distinguishing points. Averted with the Crispino twins, who are fraternal twins and don't look much alike aside from having the same purple eyes.
  • Amicably Divorced: Yakov and Lilia. They're no longer a couple, but they still respect each other as professionals, and they get along well enough to live together with Yurio for the sake of the boy's career.
  • Animal-Eared Headband:
    • The members of Yurio's Groupie Brigade are easily recognizable by their cat-eared headbands. Yurio ends up wearing one himself, when a fan throws him one as a gift and it lands squarely on his head.
    • The hoods on the Nishigori triplets' vests all have animal ears on them; Axel's hood has bear's ears, Lutz's has bunny ears, and Loop's has cat ears.
  • Animation Bump: The show looks consistently nice (especially on DVD), but Victor's Stay Close To Me and Yurio's Welcome to the Madness programs are gorgeously animated.
  • Arc Words: "I'm the only one who..." and variants thereof. The phrase showcases the different skaters' priorities. For Yuri, it's Victor; for Phichit, it's his pride as a representative of his country; for Christophe it's his confident sexuality and self-determination; and for J.J. it's his pride and individuality.
  • Art Shift: When Yuri is telling Takeshi his imagined story behind the Eros program, the art style changes to resemble an old-school shoujo look made of paper cutouts.
  • Ascended Fanboy: Yuri grew up admiring Victor and has a wild number of posters of him in his bedroom. He ends up competing with him, and Victor eventually becomes his coach. This gets taken Up to Eleven when they kiss in Episode 7 and become the show's Official Couple. Then they get engaged in Episode 10.
  • Audience Surrogate:
    • The triplets get by expositing about how competitions work by reviewing what Yuri has to do in order to make his way up to normal competitions to his family, who have no idea about what goes on in the skating world.
    • In general, Yuko seems to be this, seeing as that she's a woman who regularly fangirls and nosebleeds over Victor, who's considered the most attractive man in the cast.
    • In the final episode, we get an audience surrogate in the audience — the almighty cheer/squeal heard when Victor joins Yuri for his exhibition skate is one that is echoed in many a real-life reaction video.
  • Author Appeal: Yamamoto is a huge fan of ice skating note , and it really shows in this series. Mitsurou Kubo, who came up with the original concept for the anime, is also a big skating fan, particularly of Tatsuki Machida (whom Yuri Katsuki was partially inspired by).
  • Back for the Finale: Episode 10 shows that every character introduced will be watching the Grand Prix Finals, either from TV, livestreams or in person.
  • Bait-and-Switch:
    • When Yuri goes back to his old skating rink, he runs into Yuko, his old skating partner and childhood friend. When thinking about her, he smiles and thinks about how she's "still really cute", and we even get a flashback montage of their relationship together and their mutual admiration of Victor. After he performs Victor's championship free program, he looks as if he's about to confess to her... and in pop Axel, Lutz, and Loop, her daughters by their mutual rinkmate Takeshi. It turns out she had settled down in the five years he was away, and he's already seen the kids before. Sometimes boys and girls are just friends.
    • The story of Yuri's Eros program. At first, you'd think that the story represents Victor sweeping Yuri off his feet and then leaving for bigger and better things. Episode 10 shows it's actually the reverse: it was Yuri who initially impressed and charmed Victor while he was drunk, and he "cast him away" not because he was disinterested, but because he doesn't remember what happened that night.
    • In the early episodes, Victor is set up to look somewhat duplicitous, if not outright suspicious. He's seen with Hidden Eyes, Peek-a-Bangs, Dissonant Serenity shots and many a Cheshire Cat Grin, which would (and did) lead the audience to believe that he was using Yuri to further his skating career and would eventually hurt his protege when this was revealed. As it turns out, nothing could be further from his mind. Victor's not setting up a Xanatos Gambit at all, he's just a Determinator in love, and the crossed wires that make him look suspicious are largely a combination of Unreliable Narrator, Poor Communication Kills and a Forgotten First Meeting. He wasn't using Yuri to further his skating, he was using his skating to get close to Yuri — and even then, he absolutely keeps his word to coach Yuri, with great success.
    • In Episode 9, Sara tells Michele that they are too codependent and that they would be better off apart. Michele proceeds to skate a beautiful program, by the end of which Sara is driven to tears. She then rushes to kiss-and-cry, hugs Michele and apologizes for being cruel. You'd think she slipped back into codependency... but nope, the next moment she smiles cheerfully while saying that yes, they would be better off apart after all.
  • Big Brother Instinct: Michele Crispino has this towards his younger twin sister Sara, stemming from how boys used to bully her when they were young. However, it's deconstructed since over time his protectiveness of her has become very dependent and possessive; the two of them go everywhere together, Michele is hostile towards any man who tries to approach his sister, and his monologue during his program is about how nobody can tear them apart. Sara acknowledges that they are rather codependent and knows that they need some distance, and she tells Michele this in no uncertain terms in Episode 9. This makes Michele realize that truly loving his sister means that he needs to let her live her own life, and he uses that realization to fuel his feelings during his free program, putting on a fantastic performance without her near the rink.
  • Big Brother Mentor: Victor's default mode — he's been seen in the first episode alone quietly mentoring Yurio on fine points of his skating, and once he'd seen Yuri imitating his latest championship program, he immediately packs his bags to coach the latter in Japan. He's also almost thirty and thus close to retirement, and as a common occupation of retired athletes is coaching, he might be interested in trying this himself. Oddly enough, his brotherly attitude is just one of many personalities he has to teach Yuri with, and Victor even asks him what type of mentor he wants him to be.
    • Midway through the series, though, and particularly after the grand banquet sequence in Episode 10, we know for certain that to be this was never what he intended, at least with Yuri.
  • The Big Damn Kiss: Between Victor and Yuri at the end of Episode 7. Later confirmed in the audio commentary for episode 7, where Kubo, the writer, Leo's voice actor and Guang Hong's voice actor all congratulated Victor and Yuri for finally doing it.
  • Big "NO!":
    • Minako practically shrieks one when she sees how Yuri has gained a lot of weight from his last few months in Detroit.
    • To a lesser extent, Yuri does this (in English, no less) when Victor tries to invite himself in his room.
  • Big "WHAT?!":
    • Yuri's reaction when Victor declares that he'll be Yuri's coach.
    • The Nishigori family does this three times when they realize that Victor really is in Japan to coach Yuri.
    • Yuri, Yurio, and Yakov's reaction when Victor asks Yakov to take his place as Yuri's coach for a day.
  • Bland-Name Product:
    • In the second episode, Victor's belongings arrive in CedEx boxes.
    • An official poster shows Yuri, Victor, and Yurio after a shopping outlet with bags labelled Rouis Buitton and Cocoa Sambora.
    • J.J.'s jacket has an inverted version of the logo for Canadian Tire, a major retail chain in Canada that frequently sponsors athletes.
    • In Episode 12, Seung-Gil uses a Sunsung laptop to watch the Grand Prix Finals.
  • Body Motifs: You may expect the focus to be on feet and legs, given the sport, but in reality there is much more attention paid to hands, especially in a romantic context:
    • Victor's aria, "Stammi Vicino", references both hands and feet and in the pair skate with Yuri, the characters' choreography matches up with the lyrics.
    • While subtle, a fair amount of attention is focused on Yuri and Victor's feet, particularly during intense or crucial scenes in the show, and this symbolizes their developing relationship.
      • In Episode 3, when Victor makes a not-so-subtle pass at Yuri, their feet (which are both in skates) is shown beforehand, indicating that on the ice, they are able to see eye-to-eye — which isn't the case off the ice, since later in the episode, when their feet is shown once more, only Yuri is wearing skates, while Victor is wearing normal shoes.
      • Upon their reunion in Episode 9 however, the audience is given a brief shot of their feet, which are both in normal footwear — indicating that they are now on the same page even when skating isn't concerned.
    • When Victor flirts with Yuri, the focus is on his hands, running his hand down Yuri's arm in Episode 2, for example, or caressing his face and lips in Episode 3.
    • About halfway through the series, Yuri and Victor make a ritual of holding hands and/or entwining their fingers before Yuri heads on to the ice. In the final episode, faced with Yuri's retirement, Victor is slow to release his grip.
    • The final flourish of Yuri's free skate is extending his left hand towards Victor, with his right hand over his heart. The symbolism is not subtle. Of particular significance is Episode 5, where the gesture is performed for the first time, catches Victor off-guard, and is probably the first instance of Yuri "reaching back" in response to Victor's flirtation and the final episode, where the final performance of the program is accompanied by extended focus on Yuri's hands and his Held Gaze with Victor.
    • The pair rings, which shine and sparkle constantly, draw even more attention to the characters' hands.
    • Victor wears gloves to every event as part of his "coach outfit." However, once they put on the rings, the gloves go missing to show off Victor's ring in the final two episodes. In accordance with this, there are many shots of Victor's hands in these episodes.
    • On a less warm and fluffy note, hands also signal when the characters are enraged. Yurio's violent gestures and death grip on whatever he's holding are fairly prominent, but so is Victor's tremor when he grips Yurio's chin after the teenager insults Victor and Yuri.
  • Book Ends: Episode 12 has multiple scenes that serve as parallels to similar occurrences in the earlier episodes.
    • Yuri crying in Episode 7 and Victor crying in Episode 12 because of what the other had said.
    • Yuri's "dime-a-dozen skater" speech, which is spoken in the first and final episodes.
    • The "Stay Close to Me" program: In Episode 1, it's skated by both in separate occasions albeit is shown in a manner that transitions from one to the other and goes back and forth; in Episode 12, they skate to it as a pair.
    • Victor walks away from Yakov and Yuri runs towards Victor and Yurio on the same bridge.
    • Yurio calling Yuri a moron. In Episode 1 Yurio shouted it in Yuri's face after his "just retire already" speech; in Episode 12, he muttered it during his internal monologue while skating his best to make sure Yuri doesn't get gold and retire.
    • Victor's first and last spoken line: "Yuri."
  • Bratty Half-Pint: The Nishigori triplets. They use their parents' social media accounts without permission (like how they use Yuko's account to upload the video of Yuri skating Victor's program), and they often stay up past their bedtime to watch figure skating competitions, no matter how many times Yuko tells them to go to sleep.
  • Breather Episode: Episode 10, which is between the emotionally-intense Episode 9 and the start of the Grand Prix Finals in Episode 11. It features the cast taking some restful moments in Barcelona before the big event. While there's a lot of light-hearted comedy, there are also some more emotional moments, such as Yuri and Victor's engagement and the reveal about their real first meeting.
  • Broken Pedestal: Episode 12 reveals this is the reason Yurio is so harsh on Yuri. During the Sochi Grand Prix Finals, Yurio admired Yuri's eye-grabbing step sequence and wished to see him skate to his full potential. He followed him to the restroom because he wanted to know what kind of person Yuri was, only to find him crying. For Yurio, who uses every defeat to motivate himself to improve and come back stronger, seeing someone he looked up to wallowing in self-pity was a massive disappointment.
  • Brooding Boy, Gentle Girl: Downplayed; Yuri (as the former) and Victor (as the latter) share this dynamic.
  • The Cameo:
  • Cast Full of Pretty Boys: It's a male-centric sports anime, what do you expect?
  • Central Theme:
    • Time, and its lack thereof. The premise of the show is about a man who's almost at the end of his career, but is given the chance to make a splash with his presumed final year. Time isn't on Yurio or Victor's sides, either— Yurio's youthful frame is part of what gives him an edge over other competitors and he will, inevitably, grow out of them, and Victor's very quickly approaching retirement. Even the ending theme, "You Only Live Once", invokes the theme.
    • Perhaps most strongly, love. Yuri states in the beginning that he wishes to regain his "love for skating". Victor meets Yuri though a video of him skating his "Stay Close to Me" program, a romantic song originally commissioned by Victor himself. One of Yuri's performances is inspired by eros, sexual love, and his other performance is about his journey of finding love. Yuri even decides to make his competition theme "love". Both of his programs slowly evolve to reflect his growing relationship with Victor. On the other hand, Yurio's performance centers around agape, unconditional love, and he eventually connects this to his relationship with his grandfather. Many of the skaters dance out of love for something or someone — e.g. Georgi skates as a desperate plea for his ex-girlfriend Anya; Michele, out of a codependency with his sister; even out of love for oneself (J.J.). In short, the entire concept of "love", in all its forms, both unhealthy and healthy, runs rampant throughout the show.
    Yuri: There's a place you just can't reach unless you have a dream too large to bear alone. We call everything on the ice "love".
    • The gap between perception and reality also features quite a bit, particularly with regard to how people see themselves, what others think of them, and reality. The most obvious case is Yuri, who thinks he's an unremarkable skater with no friends who got the temporary attention of his idol through freak chance, when in reality he's a skilled (if under-confident) skater who's well-thought of by his peers and whose idol not only thinks the world of him, but has been smitten with him for a year. Victor showcases another side of the coin, viewed as the untouchable, flirtatious king of the ice by his fans and as a fickle, selfish Bunny-Ears Lawyer by his peers, when in reality he's been bored and lonely for a while now, until a certain banquet happens. Yurio struggles with his own self-image too: he's thought of as "cute" by his fans and even his coaches play up his "delicate and graceful" image, when he's really a spitfire who wants to be thought of as ferocious, not sweet.
  • Color Motif:
    • The entire anime's color seems to be blue. It's a color commonly present on the design of many characters, like Yuri's glasses, Victor's eyes, Yurio's jacket, etc. The background of the scenes often have some blue details, particularly when they are on the ice rink. Even the poster for the anime has a blue color overlaying the image and the first episode has a blue glow on Victor during his performance. This might double as a Genius Bonus, as the color blue is often associated with same-sex romance, particularly in Russia, where the Russian word for "blue" (голубой) is sometimes used to refer to a gay man.
    • The three main characters have their own: Yuri has blue to match the show, Victor has red and purple, and Yurio has yellow.
  • Cover Innocent Eyes and Ears: One man does it to their little boy when Victor stretches Yuri in the hot springs.
  • Creative Closing Credits: The ending credits are mainly shown as photos being scrolled through on Instagram. In Episode 10 it changes to the gallery sections of Victor's, Christophe's, and Yurio's phones showing photos of the banquet where Victor and Yuri drunkenly danced together in their real Forgotten First Meeting.
  • Deathbringer the Adorable: Yurio's cat is named Pyocha, which according to the official guidebook is short for Puma Tiger Scorpion.
  • Demonic Possession: This happens to Yuri in the Yuri!!! on Festival script reading. And no, this is not a joke.
  • Dissonant Serenity: Usually during performances, when we hear the character's inner monologue, it sounds strained, like they are talking while performing. However, during Episode 7, during Yuri's performance, his inner monologue is strangely calm, and even after flubbing parts of his program, his inner monologue remains calm and collected.
  • "Do It Yourself" Theme Tune: Wataru Hatano, Georgi's voice actor, sings the ending theme "You Only Live Once".
  • Don't You Dare Pity Me!: Yurio gets furious when Victor and Yuri wish him good luck on his short program, thinking that they feel sorry for him.
  • Dramatic Irony: Because the viewer can hear the characters' interior monologues, they're often privy to information that the other characters don't have.
    • Most of the story is seen through Yuri's eyes, and so his thoughts and feelings dominate. This usually means that the viewer is well-aware of when Yuri is on the verge of a breakdown or Freak Out! long before the other characters are. Made especially obvious in Episode 11, where Victor comments on Yuri's new confidence and his determined appearance, while the viewer knows that Yuri is an anxious mess in desperate need of Victor's reassurance. This only gets worse when he sees Victor's enthusiasm for the other skaters, yet the final scene implies that Victor didn't realize anything was wrong.
    • When we get a look into Victor's head, especially in Episode 10, we can see that he's Yuri-besotted, and has been thoroughly enjoying his new lifestyle away from the rink. A pity that he doesn't seem to have told Yuri this, as Yuri is absolutely convinced that his time with Victor is a fleeting thing, and has been braced to say goodbye since the moment they met. It doesn't help that Victor hasn't filled Yuri in on what happened between them at the last Grand Prix banquet.
  • Eagleland: Subverted. The bombastic, hammy character with an It's All About Me attitude is Canadian Jean-Jacques Leroy, while American Leo de la Iglesia is more down-to-earth.
  • Enhanced on DVD: The DVD/Blu-ray release fixes a lot of the Off-Model stills and animation, and some environments and backgrounds were redone to avoid any controversies regarding plagiarism. Some shots that were originally stills were even redone to be animated.
  • Even the Guys Want Him:
    • Victor is an extremely popular figure skater and has both male and female fans. It's to the point where all he has to do is playfully wink at the camera to set reporters of all genders swooning.
    • Christophe also seems to have both male and female admirers.
  • Everything's Better with Sparkles: The outfits the skaters wear during competition are generously sparkly with encrusted crystals, shiny fabrics, and colorful jewelry.
  • Evolving Credits: After the first episode, the opening becomes more colorful. The second half of the first opening in particular is almost completely monochrome at first, but after that more colors and even a skating arena background are added in. In Episode 11, images of the skaters competing in the Grand Prix Finals are also added.
  • Excited Show Title!: Three exclamation points, right after the first word.
  • Excited Title! Two-Part Episode Name!: All the titles of the episodes follow this format (i.e "Easy as Pirozhki! The Grand Prix Final of Tears").

    F-L 
  • Family Business: Yuri's parents and older sister run Yu-topia Katsuki, the last remaining hot springs resort in Hasetsu. Since the family name "Katsuki" is part of its name, it's likely that it's been a family business for a while.
  • Fangirl: It's probably safe to say that any female character who either isn't knowledgeable about the figure skating world (like Hiroko) or isn't already a figure skater themselves (like Mila or Sara) will be this for a specific male skater or skaters in general.
  • Fanservice:
    • In the first episode, we get a rather gratuitous shot of Victor's naked butt as he stands up while in the hot spring. The triplets are very aware of what some of the audience came for, and even tease at a nipple slip for the preview of the second episode. A male nipple slip.
    • Christophe plays this straight with his short program, complete with multiple butt shots.
    • The ending of Episode 10 shows an almost-naked Christophe and a ridiculously drunk Yuri pole-dancing at the banquet for the previous year's Grand Prix Finals.
    • Victor stretching Yuri in the hot springs in Episode 4. It starts off with Victor crouching and clasping Yuri's hands as the camera pans up from the floor, giving generous focus to their naked bodies before Victor pulls him from the water and puts Yuri in increasingly awkward poses. The original run used Scenery Censor, but the Blu-ray upped the fanservice by using nearly see-through Censor Steam.
  • Fatal Flaw: Everyone has one:
    • Yuri and his confidence issues. He's an excellent skater, but when it comes to competitions, he can't handle the pressure and he chokes at the last second. He also lacks the drive to ask for what he really wants to do, resulting in a poorer performance. His anxiety and low opinion of himself only make way for even more flaws.
    • Yurio is fine technically, but lacks the emotion in his programs to truly stand out on top. He'll get himself too focused on landing his moves that he forgets to tell a story with his skating.
    • Though Victor is a famous skater who's loved by many and has a lot of natural charisma, he tends to be Innocently Insensitive and lacking in emotional intelligence, not knowing how to deal with people who are in distress. This comes to a head in Episode 7, when he tries to scare Yuri out of his anxious funk by saying that he'll quit being his coach if he doesn't make the podium, but all that does is make Yuri break down in tears.
    • Yakov mentions that Georgi's programs, while flashy, have a giant component that Victor's programs lacked a lot of the time. It's implied that that "something" is honesty, or the ability to convey his true feelings through his skating.
  • Five-Second Foreshadowing: After Yuri gets off the phone in the first episode, the scene cuts to the bathroom faucet leaking a little bit. Three guesses to what Yuri's doing when the scene cuts back to him.
  • Foreshadowing:
    • Several regarding Yuri and Victor's eventual Relationship Upgrade into the Official Couple:
      • In the very first episode, Victor's program and Yuri copying it overlap to the sound of "Stay Close To Me". The song foreshadows the future of the relationship between them as the song actually narrates a romance between two men.
      • In Episode 3, Victor seems like he is about to kiss Yuri, something the shot even makes it looks like. In Episode 7, extremely similar shots are used when Victor does kiss Yuri, but in a more dramatic way.
      • In Episode 4, Victor asks Yuri what he wants him to be to him, starting with "father figure" and ending with "lover".
      • When Yuri nails his short program performance in Episode 6, the commentator for the event declares that "Love wins!" as a callback to Yuri's chosen theme for the season, but the phrase was also a heavily-publicized hashtag used during the course of the Supreme Court case that ultimately gave same-sex couples across the United States the right to marry, giving the impression that Yuri and Victor's relationship is romantic.
      • Also in Episode 7, earlier in the episode, when Yuri is crying in the parking lot, Victor straight-up offers to kiss Yuri to make him feel better. Yuri declines, not out of disgust or a distaste for the idea, but because what he wants right now is for Victor to have faith in him.
    • In Episode 4, Takeshi and Yuko joke that many skating fans might be hating Yuri now since they believe that he "stole Victor from [ice skating]". Episodes 6 and 8 show that there really is some resentment towards Yuri from Victor's fans because of this.
    • In Episode 6, Victor tells his dog Makkachin not to eat his steamed buns while he's away with Yuri. In Episode 8, Makkachin does eat them and gets some stuck in his throat as a result, putting him in critical condition and forcing Victor to go back to Japan to make sure he's alright.
    • In Episode 9, Mila remarks that Victor's presence affects Yuri's skating ability and mentions that one can imagine what kind of performance he'd bring out if Victor were there with him. Cut to Episode 12 and Yuri delivers his most breathtaking performance of his free program with Victor there with him and supporting him wholeheartedly.
    • In the Episode 10 preview, Yuri says that he'll get something round and golden for Victor. There were many guesses but as it turns out, Yuri gives him a golden engagement ring.
    • With the revelation in Episode 10 that at their real Forgotten First Meeting Yuri had drunkenly hit on Victor but forgot about it the next morning, all of Victor's questions about Yuri's love life and all the flirting makes more sense. He wasn't just teasing Yuri, he was straight up hitting on him, as he was already infatuated with him since the beginning.
      • In Episode 10 itself, Victor narrates an incident where Yurio makes his first friend. Otabek, the reticent skater from Kazakhstan, has a history with Yurio which the Russian has entirely forgotten: they trained together for one summer, and while Yurio doesn't remember it, he left such an impression on Otabek that the unsociable skater seeks him out when he has the opportunity. A few minutes later, we learn that Yuri and Victor are in a similar situation. They spent one night talking and dancing together which culminated in Yuri begging Victor to be his coach. Yuri, who was drunk at the time, doesn't remember a thing... but it's one of the defining moments of Victor's life, as he falls for Yuri that night and seeks him out again the instant an opportunity arises.
    • In Episode 8, one of the reporters asks Victor if he would like to face Yuri as a competitor someday, to which Victor deflects the question by drawing the attention to Yurio (who was nearby). By Episode 12, Victor decides to resume his career as a figure skater and Yuri changes his mind about retiring, which means that they'll compete together for the next season.
  • Forgotten First Meeting:
    • Before Victor arrived at Yuri's hometown, the two had already encountered each other during the Sochi Grand Prix Finals. However, only Yuri seems to remember. Later on, it turns out that Yuri is the one who forgot their actual first meeting, which was at the closing banquet that takes place after the competition. Several glasses of champagne had him hitting on Victor, dancing with him, drunkenly pleading with him to be his coach, and then forgetting all about it the following morning.
    • Otabek and Yuri met during a summer camp five years before the start of the series. While Yurio made a strong impression on Otabek, he was going through some difficult stuff at that time and didn't really pay much attention to Otabek, forgetting about him.
  • The Four Loves:
    • Two are brought up at the "Hot Springs on Ice" showdown in Episode 3. The two Yuris need to skate to two similar pieces, with one representing eros and the other agape. However, the shy, insecure Yuri gets the seductive Eros program, while the hot-blooded and temperamental Yurio gets the emotional Agape program. It's done to give the boys a chance to branch out from their usual programs, and to make them look inside themselves for emotions they can use in their dancing in order to look forward.
    • As Yuri's program centers around the concept of love, it stands to reason that he's looking at it from all angles as well. He recognizes the love he receives from his family and friends, and he describes his feelings toward Victor as a sort of "love" as well, since he's the first person that Yuri wanted to keep a hold of.
    • The other two loves, storge (familial love) and philia (brotherly love), do make small appearances in the story. Episode 9 showcases an unhealthy case of storge with the Crispino siblings and Michele's inability to let go of his sister, and Episode 10 presented philia through Yurio finding a genuine friend who admired him in Otabek.
  • Freeze-Frame Bonus:
    • In the ending credits, if you pause the video during the quick transitions between the Instagram pictures, you can see the skaters' comments on the photos (in Surprisingly Good English to boot!), as well as other details like their account names and how many likes they have. You can also see that the last picture, a tender photo of Victor combing Yuri's hair, was uploaded by the Nishigori triplets.
    • During a flashback in the first episode, Yuko briefly holds up a magazine that has an In-Universe interview with a younger Victor, which is actually readable if you zoom in enough.
  • Friendly Rivalry:
    • Yuri seems to have this with the skaters we see in Episode 6, especially Phichit, Guang-Hong and Leo. They're seen supporting each other throughout the whole competition. At times, his relationship with Yurio can be this, although their overall relationship remains rocky, what with Yurio's temper and insensitivity, as well as Yuri's lack of self-esteem.
    • Victor and Christophe have this kind of relationship. Despite being rivals who have been competing against each other for about ten years, Episode 11 shows that they're still on good terms when off the ice, and Victor admits that he can't imagine being in a competition without Christophe .
  • Funny Background Event:
    • When Yuko scolds the triplets for using her account to upload the video of Yuri skating Victor's program without her permission, Lutz and Loop are crying, but Axel is happily watching the video without any remorse at all.
    • In Episode 6, shortly after Christophe makes his first major appearance and is talking to Victor, Phichit tries to take a picture of them while Leo tries to stop him and Guang-Hong looks awestruck.
    • Most of what Makkachin does is this, whether he's bouncing along behind Victor or sleeping in Yuri's bed.
  • Funny Foreigner: Yakov Feltsman, Victor and Yurio's coach back in Russia, is played largely as a combination of this and Cool Old Guy.
  • The Glomp: Victor loves giving this to Yuri, and hugging before and after a competition eventually became a tradition for them.
  • Grand Romantic Gesture: Yuri's free program is more or less this for Victor, and Episode 12 is more than happy to make that perfectly clear to the audience.
  • Grandma, What Massive Hotness You Have!: Minako, Yuri's ballet teacher, is his mom's senpai, but she looks younger and more attractive than his sister.
  • Groupie Brigade: Several of the skaters have them, but Yurio's fangirls, the "Yuri Angels", are easily the most passionate: they follow him to every event, Squeeing loudly and asking for photos and autographs, whether he is in the mood for it or not. J.J. has the "J.J. Girls", who are a bit older and not as overbearing.
  • Growing Up Sucks: The teen-to-young-adult transition and young-adult-to-"proper"-adult transitions pose problems for the main cast:
    • Yurio is the most striking example: his skating style relies on his delicate looks and a degree of flexibility that the older skaters don't have. However, as Episode 4 makes clear, he knows that he's on borrowed time in this regard. He doesn't have long until puberty changes his body drastically, and this will probably cost him many of the techniques that were part of his repertoire. After years of training to get as good as he is, he'll probably have to start relearning — or at least drastically adjusting — his whole approach to skating.
    • Yuri's faint-heartedness and lack of direction really come back to bite him once he finishes university. Losing the fallback of being a student, coupled with the demands of his sport favoring younger competitors over older ones, means that adulthood hits him like a brick. He's already reasonably independent (he's lived abroad for years), but when faced with the question of "what do you want to do with your life?" he retreats back to his family home, chasing what little comfort and security he can find. He's too old to be able to rely on someone else stepping in to guide him, but he's still young enough to need guidance. Thank goodness that a certain Russian shows up when he does.
    • Speaking of Victor, it's easy to forget that he's still fairly young himself. At his age (27), few people would even be thinking about the word "retirement," but he's already considered a bit of a dinosaur in the skating community, with everyone else measuring their age and seniority against his. Throughout the series, he's forced to consider what he really wants to do, and what life after skating might hold for him.
  • Happy Dance: Minako and the Nishigori triplets do this in Episode 3 since they're excited about Yuri's comeback as a figure skater, though it mostly involves spinning.
  • Held Gaze: After Episode 7, they share this at least once an episode.
  • Hope Spot: At first it seems that Yurio has mellowed toward Yuri in Episode 9, offering him pork cutlet pirozhkis and encouraging him while Victor is absent. Then he finds out about Yuri and Victor "engagement", and the Green-Eyed Monster returns; although what Yurio is envious about is left unclear.
  • Hypocritical Heartwarming: Yuri defends his fangirls when J.J. insults them, even though he finds them annoying.
  • I'm Standing Right Here: Of a sort; in Episode 2, Yurio heads to Ice Castle Hasetsu after being told that Victor might be there. When he arrives, a few seconds later Yuri does so as well, but doesn't notice Yurio at all. The Nishigori triplets try to point out that Yurio (who's beginning to shake in rage) is right behind him, but an exhausted Yuri fails to get the message... and Yurio roundhouse-kicks him right through the door.
  • Indecipherable Lyrics: The lyrics of Yurio's short program theme, "In Regards to Love: Agape". The album of the official soundtrack provides the lyrics and reveals that the song is sung in Latin, and a fan English translation can be found here.
  • Instant Web Hit: Yuri's perfect imitation of Victor's free program found its way onto the net thanks to the mischievous Nishigori triplets, and became a sensation around the ice skating world. It's one of the reasons why Victor came to train Yuri in the first place, though it turns out that Yuri had already attracted Victor's interest long before the video even existed.
  • Intended Audience Reaction: Christophe's short program in Episode 6 is filled with over-the-top sex appeal intending to entice the audience. Phichit and Yuri are very understandably confused throughout the whole thing, while only Minako shows any real enthusiasm about it.
  • In Touch with His Feminine Side:
    • Yuri, most definitely. Besides his career as a figure skater (which includes a lot of ballet practice), he's a generally sensitive soul and even has a phone cover in bright cheery colors with his beloved dog patterned all over it. It's further emphasized in Episode 3 where he decides to perform his eros skating program from the perspective of the woman rather than the playboy pursuing her.
    • The same could be said of Victor, whose costume from the Junior World Championship was meant to evoke "both male and female genders at once".
  • In Vino Veritas: Yuri is a... fun drunk, as it turns out. During the closing banquet for the Sochi Grand Prix Finals, he got drunk, had a dance-off with Yurio, stripped and did a pole dance with Christophe in front of everyone there, and then hit on Victor, danced with him and drunkenly begged him to be his coach. He remembers exactly nothing about it.
  • Irony: Yuri spends most of the series expecting Victor to leave him and return to his career. In the end we see that Victor has zero inclination to leave Yuri's side, skating be damned. Instead, it's Yuri who puts their relationship in jeopardy, via a misguided I Want My Beloved to Be Happy.
  • It's All About Me: J.J. is a perfect example of this, although he's a nicer and more harmless example than most.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Yurio is a mean little bastard... but not entirely. He definitely has a temper issue, and he acts a little stuck up for someone who's trying to work his way up in the senior division, but he still helps Yuri out with a quad move without much prompting, he accepts his loss in Episode 3 without much fuss (besides leaving early), and when he's not focusing on skating he seems to be a decent fellow. It's later shown that he also cares a great deal about his grandfather, and the finale shows that he never really hated Yuri, and actually idolized him all along.
  • Jizzed in My Pants: Christophe is heavily implied to do this at the end of both his programs.
  • Joke and Receive: In Episode 4, Takeshi and Yuko joke that many skating fans might be hating Yuri now since they believe that he "stole Victor from [ice skating]". Episodes 6 and 8 show that they're actually correct.
  • Kissing Discretion Shot: The kiss between Victor and Yuri isn't shown in full. The moment before it happens there's a closeup on their lips as they inch closer and closer, and then Yuri's eyes widen in surprise while Victor's eyes close. Then when the kiss happens, Victor's arm blocks their mouths, but from the positioning of their faces and the reactions of other characters afterwards, it's very obvious that they weren't just hugging.
  • The Last Dance: The premise of the show, at least on Yuri's part. The last five years of his skating career have been so spotty that the season Victor's coaching him through could end up being his last, if he doesn't watch himself. He's skating while fully aware of this fact. Episode 12 eventually subverts this, as he changes his mind and decides to skate for another season, with Victor as both his coach and his rival.
  • Locked Out of the Loop: A major source of headaches for the characters:
    • Yuri is oblivious to the events of last year's banquet, despite nearly every other finalist remembering him as the life of the party. He wasn't deliberately locked out of the loop, but no-one realized he was too drunk to remember the events of that night.
    • Victor is oblivious to his skater's career plans: Yuri makes it known to the audience from the beginning that he intends this year to be his last year in competitive skating, and according to Christophe there have been rumors about Yuri's retirement in the skating community. When Victor finds out though, he's nothing short of devastated.
    • More pragmatically, younger skaters, or those who are new to particular levels of the competition circuit, usually have to be filled in on what went on the previous year. Phichit, for example, needs to catch up on the events behind the scenes of the previous year's Grand Prix Finals, because he wasn't there.
  • Long-Haired Pretty Boy: When he was a teenager, Victor used to wear his hair long.
  • Love Hurts: Examined in various ways:
    • Yuri and Victor become the lights of each other's lives... but that also means that they have the power to emotionally destroy the other with an insensitive or misguided remark. The already-anxiety prone Yuri spends the whole series dreading the seemingly inevitable (to him) loss of Victor once his coach's interest wanes, or the pull of the ice rink calls him back to Russia. Meanwhile, Victor, who seems to have dodged the extremes of love and heartbreak up until now, falls to pieces when it looks like he might lose Yuri. They work through it.
    • Georgi has not coped well with his recent break-up, and it informs not only his short program but the majority of his characterization.
    • On a familial level, Yurio adores his grandfather, but the man isn't always able to be there when his grandson needs him. When he lets Yurio down, the normally self-motivated teenager's confidence takes a major hit.
  • Lover and Beloved: While downplayed due to an age difference of only four years, Victor's status as Yuri's coach, helping him improve as a skater and also get in touch with his sexy side, has shades of this. And then the romantic side of their relationship is confirmed as of Episode 7.

    M-R 
  • Meaningful Name:
    • The Nishigori triplets are named Axel, Lutz and Loop — after the three most important skating jumps.
    • Yuri's family name, Katsuki, means "born to win". Yuri's given name means "courage".
    • Victor's name is fairly obvious, meaning "winner" in English... even the Russian spelling, Viktor, has the same meaning. His family name, Nikiforov, comes from the Greek name Nikephoros, which means "bringer of victory".
    • J.J.'s last name "Leroy" is an old spelling of "Leroi" which translates (from French) to "the King," which is what he calls himself.
    • Yurio's family name, Plisetsky, is possibly a shoutout to Soviet-born prima ballerina, choreographer, director, and actress Maya Plisetskaya... who may have served as inspiration for Lilia Baranovskaya.
  • Meditating Under a Waterfall: The two Yuris do this in Episode 3 to prepare for the Hot Springs on Ice competition.
  • Memento MacGuffin: From the moment Yuri and Victor's engagement rings enter the plot, the anime is keen to remind you of their presence, and they can even signal the status of their owners. They're a little duller when Yuri and Victor have a falling out, but they dazzle and flash even more noticeably than the skaters' costumes when they reaffirm their affection for each other: at the end of Yuri's free skate, Victor's ring sparkles, and Yuri's shines back in response.
  • Men Don't Cry: Averted. Almost all the characters are not ashamed to cry, and thankfully, never once are they mocked for daring to shed tears. The only exception is in Episode 2 when Yurio cruelly taunts Yuri for crying in the previous episode, although Yuri just brushes the comment aside.
  • Misery Poker: A lighthearted variant, given that Yurio is trying to cheer up Yuri at the time. Post-Rostelecom Cup, he complains that Yuri at least had a legitimate excuse for why he under-performed, with the stress of his coach/boyfriend not being there which then threw him off balance, but Yurio skated his heart out and still lost to J.J..
  • The Namesake: In Episode 4, Yuri decides that "Yuri on Ice" will be the name of the piece of music he's skating to for his free program. The piece itself is meant to embody his career as a skater, which is especially important since he believes that this will be his last season.
  • Necktie Leash: Yuri does this to Victor in Episode 8, as a demonstration that a) they've had a Relationship Upgrade and b) Yuri has gained a lot of confidence and no longer sees Victor as an untouchable god.
  • Nice, Mean, and In-Between: Yuri, Yurio, and Victor, respectively; though Yuri and Victor switch places from time to time.
  • No Antagonist: None of the characters are really villainous, not even those with more abrasive or self-centered personalities like Yurio and J.J., since even they have more sympathetic sides to them. One can view Yuri's own anxiety and insecurities as the only real antagonistic force of the story.
  • No Bisexuals: Averted with the main character. Yuri is very strongly hinted to have had a crush on his childhood friend Yuko, and ultimately ends up with Victor. A few other minor characters are also hinted to be bi.
  • No Celebrities Were Harmed:
    • Yuri Katsuki seems to be a combination of various Japanese figure skaters.
      • Yuri's career and background are based almost verbatim off Tatsuki Machida. 23-year-old Machida, like Yuri, finished last during his first stint at the Grand Prix Finals in Sochi (which was actually held at the Iceberg Skating Palace), proceeded to fail at Nationals, and didn't make it to the World Championships that year. Machida was also a college student at the time, had no idea what to do when he graduated, and struggled with low self-esteem. Both Machida and Yuri went overseas to America and Yuri's home rink "Ice Castle Hasetsu" was most definitely inspired from California's "Ice Castle" where Machida trained.
      • Parts of Yuri's personality and skating style draw inspiration from Daisuke Takahashi. Takahashi was known for having a "glass heart" from his fragile mentality during skates in his early days. This is reflected in Yuri's struggle with his anxiety and weak mentality on the ice throughout the entire series, as well as directly referenced in Victor's statement of "skaters' hearts are as fragile as glass" in Episode 7. However, Takahashi is a legend who has a sensual style of skating much like Yuri's Eros persona. In addition, Yuri's strength is said to be his step sequences, which is also Takahashi's specialty.
      • Visually, Yuri looks quite a bit like Yuzuru Hanyu and his idolization of Victor was directly inspired by Yuzuru's admiration of Victor's real-life counterpart, Evgeni Plushenko.
    • Career-wise, Victor Nikiforov is based on Evgeni Plushenko, to the point that they hired Plushenko's choreographer as an advisor. Physically, Victor is based off of American actor John Cameron Mitchell; Mitsurou Kubo stated in an interview that when she went to see the musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch, she was inspired to base Victor's good looks on him.
      • Victor's skating style is most likely based on Stephane Lambiel's, which is very different from Evgeni Plushenko's. Some of his cheerful personality seems to be based on Lambiel (who is quite a fun-loving goofball) as well. There's also the little tidbit that Lambiel went to Japan and briefly served as a choreographer for Daisuke Takahashi (a contemporary of his), just after he retired from competition.
    • Yuri Plisetsky was based on Yulia Lipnitskaya, making him a partial Gender Flip on her story.
      • His story and skating style also strongly resembles a young Evgeni Plushenko.
    • Lilia Baranovskaya is an Expy of Maya Plisetskaya.
    • Mila Babicheva shares a strong resemblance with American skater Ashley Wagner, as highlighted by Ashley herself.
    • Phichit Chulanont seems to resemble Michael Christian Martinez, with both sporting similar appearances and having south-east Asian backgrounds (Thai and Filipino respectively) In fact, Michael himself seems to have noticed the resemblance.
    • Leo de la Iglesia may be based on American skater Jason Brown due to his fresh musicality and his programs not having a quad, which Jason Brown himself took a bit longer to put into competition. Alternatively, he also shares some similarities with Misha Ge, who, while not American (he represents Uzbekistan), is very well known for his love of choreography and extensive use of social media.
    • Otabek Altin is based off of Kazakh skater and 2014 Olympic bronze medalist, Denis Ten, who is similarly noted to be a national hero to his people. Ironically, while Otabek is noted to dislike social media, Denis is quite active on it.
    • Sara Crispino may be based on six-time Italian national champion Valentina Marchei, as the skater herself speculates.
  • Nosebleed:
    • Yuko gets a huge one in Episode 3 when Victor sends a smolder her way while demonstrating the eros program for Yuri. Later in the episode, she gets another one when she sees Yurio in one of Victor's old skating outfits.
    • Subverted in Episode 5, when Yuri suffers a knock during his free skate that results in a nosebleed when he points to Victor at the end, being the usual Visual Innuendo with a more realistic cause.
  • The Not Catch: In Episode 5, after Yuri has finished skating his free program, Victor opens his arms for a hug. Yuri dashes towards him and jumps into his arms...only for Victor to jump to the side at the last minute, because he doesn't want Yuri's nosebleed to stain his suit.
  • Odd Friendship:
    • Yuri and Phichit. Yuri is shy, has almost No Social Skills, and rarely gets involved with social media, whereas Phichit is outgoing, highly affable and easy to get along with, and is a Camera Fiend who's almost always immersing in social networks when he has the opportunity.
    • Yurio and Otabek. Yurio is aggressive, active in social media and a natural prodigy in ice-skating and ballet, while Otabek is stoic, outright dislikes social media, and initially struggled with ballet before eventually leaving it and had to undergo a lot of training to become a skilled skater as compensation.
  • Official Couple: After six episodes of Foreshadowing, Victor and Yuri enter in a romantic relationship. And as of Episode 10, they're engaged!.
  • Off-Model: Pause during any fast-paced skating scene and you'll see LOTS of it. It does get mitigated in the Blu-ray version, where the animation is greatly enhanced and the transition of movement appears a lot smoother.
  • Older Than They Look:
    • Despite being in their mid-to-late 20s, some of the skaters look like they're still in high school, with Yuri as the most prominent example.
    • Minako is probably the most extreme example out of all the characters; she looks like she's in her twenties, but she's been confirmed to be older than Hiroko, who's 49.
  • Once More, with Clarity!:
    • The Reveal of Episode 10 deliberately invokes this effect on the viewers, as the interactions between Victor and Yuri the preceding episodes are cast in a different light.
    • In the first few minutes of Episode 1, Yurio's Establishing Character Moment causes the viewers to believe that he's a Jerk Jock who bullied Yuri simply because they have the same name, and couldn't care less whether or not Yuri was not in the best state for him to beat down even further. Then in Episode 12, the scene is briefly replayed to see things from Yurio's point of view. As it turns out, he's actually a fan of Yuri and wanted to speak to him in person, though he caught Yuri in a moment of Self-Deprecation. Needless to say, Yurio was disappointed and impulsively lashed out at Yuri for it.
  • One Steve Limit: There are two characters named Yuri: Japanese Yuri Katsuki and Russian Yuri Plisetsky. Mari nicknames the Russian Yuri "Yurio" to avoid confusion, which he isn't very happy about.
  • Peek-a-Bangs: Victor and Yurio both have one eye covered by their hair.
  • Performance Anxiety:
    • Yuri suffers from it, and it causes him to choke during his performances. Getting past it is part of his Character Development.
    • J.J. in Episode 11.
  • Phenotype Stereotype: Zig-zagged. Some characters hit their national stereotypes (eg. Russians Victor and Yurio have pale hair and light eyes but lithe builds), but others don't (eg. American Leo isn't a blond and blue-eyed Caucasian but a tan, dark-haired Mexican-American).
  • Poor Communication Kills: The most cliched variations of this are avoided, but there are still occasional problems for the three protagonists.
    • Yuri didn't inform Victor of his decision that this would be his last season (even though the audience has known this almost from the start). His poor coach/fiance does not take the news well.
    • Victor somehow manages to go the best part of a year without telling Yuri that they met at last year's Grand Prix banquet, got on like a house on fire, flirted madly and spent the night dancing together. Afterwards, Yuri invited Victor to his home and begged him to become his coach. Thus, Yuri's completely baffled as to why Victor turned up out of the blue, and Victor's left wondering why he's getting the cold shoulder.
    • Yurio's main communication style is "angry," and so Yuri is utterly unaware of the fact that Yurio looks up to him — instead, Yurio is so disappointed when he finds Yuri crying after his Grand Prix Final disaster that he impulsively lets loose a tirade of abuse and tells him to quit... which is utterly counterproductive, since Yurio really wanted to see Yuri skate a flawless program.
  • Poster-Gallery Bedroom: Yuri's bedroom is practically wallpapered with posters and photos of Victor. He quickly takes them off and hides them before Victor can see any of it.
  • Precision F-Strike: In the English dub, Yurio calls J.J. a shithead during the middle of his free skate at the Rostelecom Cup at the memory of J.J. beating him at Skate Canada.
  • Queer Romance: Between Victor and Yuri, who become an Official Couple in the seventh episode.
  • Race for Your Love: As soon as Victor and Yuri see each other in the airport on Episode 9, they dash in each other's direction until they finally get to each other and embrace.
  • Rays from Heaven: In Episode 4, when Yuri and Victor are having a heart-to-heart conversation on the beach, the sky is cloudy. After they reach an understanding with one another, the sky starts to clear and rays of sunlight shine down on them.
  • Reality Ensues:
    • Victor can pull off programs that are at the very limits of human ability... but he's not immune to aging. In a sport where youth counts, he's thinking about retirement at an age when most young adults have just started their careers.
    • Despite being able to mimic Victor's impressive programs, Yuri is hampered by his tendency to comfort eat. In most sports anime, that would be a cute quirk... but Yuri isn't a rookie teenager, he's a professional athlete and his food preferences count against him, even though it's fairly mundane rather than obviously unhealthy. In addition to that, as with Victor, time is not on Yuri's side, with retiring at 24 a serious possibility.
    • Yurio is set up as Yuri's big Rival in the first episode. He even has all of the hallmarks of a typical sports anime rival: a Teen Genius, the best skater in the junior division, a connection to the main cast, and even a bit of a temper problem. You think that the story would be about them fighting neck-and-neck against each other... but after Episode 3, they don't meet in competition again until the Rostelecom Cup. Both Yuris have very different paths to follow in their competition season, meaning that they don't see each other often, and Yuri doesn't really see Yurio as a rival at all. Until Episode 8, the most one hears about the other is from the news.
    • What happens when you tell a dog not to eat some food, and the food is right within the dog's reach? The dog in question, Makkachin, will eat it, of course. After all, without a human around to tell them off, there's no way a dog could overcome their instincts that easily. There's also a very good chance that the food will make the dog sick...
    • J.J. is a great skater and is seen as a favorite to win the Grand Prix Finals, but he's also only nineteen with a lot of expectations placed upon him, which pressures him to the point that he has an anxiety attack in Episode 11. It happens at the last minute and almost seems to come out of out of nowhere since he looked quite confident before starting his performance, but anxiety attacks occurring out of nowhere is actually realistic, and happens very often. Seeing an exaggerated version of his situation and how he views the other skaters is also not uncommon during an anxiety attack.
      • Anyone who has watched figure skating IRL has seen this happen.
  • Real Place Background: The anime takes place in several real-life locations around the world, which naturally results in this. The first two episodes alone have a lot of examples, which are listed in this Crunchyroll article. Though Yuri's hometown of Hasetsu isn't a real place, it's heavily based on the real Kyushu town of Karatsu.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: All of the coaches are thoroughly decent people. They all have different styles, ranging from Stern Teacher to Cool Big Sis, and sometimes they may not be compatible with an individual skater (for example, Celestino, who's a great coach for Phichit, has a crushing effect on J.J. and can't provide the substantial support that Yuri needs), but they all want the best for their charges. Even Yakov, the sternest and most authoritarian of the coaches, shows strong support and genuine warmth for his skaters, even when they drive him up the wall.
  • Relationship Upgrade: After many episodes of teasing, in Episode 7, when Victor kisses Yuri.
  • Reset Button: After Yurio warms up to Yuri and shares food with him, he goes back to acting like a jerk towards Yuri in Episodes 10 and 11 after Victor teases that they're engaged (though a flustered Yuri denies it) says they'll get married when Yuri wins the gold medal at the Grand Prix Finals. Since it's been Yurio's goal to win gold since the beginning, Victor's announcement clearly doesn't sit well with him.
  • Ryokan (inn): Yuri's family runs the last remaining one in Hasetsu; there used to be many more, but most of them closed down as the town's population became smaller. It's complete with hot springs and a short old lady (Yuri's mother, Hiroko) running it.

    S-W 
  • Secret Test of Character: Victor implicitly gives one to both Yuri and Yurio in Episode 2 by having them listen to both "On Love: Eros" and "On Love: Agape", and after gauging their reactions to the songs, assigns them to the program opposite to what they preferred, before informing them that they should learn to step out their comfort zone (regarding their style of skating) to continue improving. Although Episode 10 hints that Victor may have another motive for assigning Yuri the eros program.
  • Serious Business: Of course, like in any other sports anime, the characters do not take their careers as figure skaters for granted, and every one of them aims to win the gold medal at the Grand Prix Finals — although here, it's portrayed in a far more down-to-earth and realistic manner.
  • Shout-Out:
    • When the Nishigori triplets are explaining how the Grand Prix series works through a series of crayon drawings they made, they display a drawing of themselves in Chicago with outfits taken straight from the Cellblock Tango.
    • The triplets' explanation of the Grand Prix also includes one drawing of the real-life top six men at the 2015 Grand Prix Final. From left to right we have Jin Boyang, Patrick Chan, Javier Fernandez, Yuzuru Hanyu, Shoma Uno, and Daisuke Murakami. They even drew the free skate costumes!
    • In Episode 7, a younger Victor wears an outfit that is a homage to Johnny Weir. Additionally, the blue flower crown Victor wears in the same episode, along with Christophe's red flower crown in Episode 12, is also a homage to the flower crown Johnny Weir wore in the Vancouver Olympics.
    • The song Phichit skates to is called "Shall We Skate?" from his favorite movie "The King and the Skater", which is a clear reference to The King and I and one of its best-known songs, "Shall We Dance?". Also, note that The King and I is about a European woman falling in love with a Thai king, and Phichit himself is Thai. Mitsurou Kubo posted the synopsis of "The King and the Skater", which changes the story to a European man, and adds Time Travel and card games.
    • In Episode 8, J.J. is shown posing with his skates in a similar way to a pose done by Czech skater Michal Březina.
    • At the end of the preview for Episode 8, Victor says "From Russia with love".
    • Victor is pictured wearing Plushenko's 2006 Olympic gold medal.
    • Otabek's bear, as noted by his real life counterpart Denis Ten himself; it also bears a resemblance to the titular Ted.
    • A Freeze-Frame Bonus in South Park which referenced the show was reciprocated in Episode 12, when a young J.J. wears Cartman's iconic coat and hat in a flashback.
    • During previous Grand Prix Finals, Yuri was wearing an outfit similar to that of Daisuke Takahashi's.
    • In one of Yuri's posters of Victor, Victor wears an outfit and various jewelries similar to that of King Henry VIII.
    • In another In-Universe poster, Victor is seen in an outfit similar to the one Canadian skater Jeffrey Buttle wore in the 2006 Winter Olympics.
    • A drawing from the official staff book has Yuri and Yurio directly parodying the poster of Blades of Glory.
    • Yuri and Victor's pair skate at the end of the last episode has several moves taken from ice dancers Virtue/Moir's free dance at the 2016 GPF.
  • Shown Their Work:
    • They go absolutely hard with the explanations for how competitions work, and each jump and maneuver during the skating programs is labelled correctly. The programs themselves are choreographed by former ice dancer Kenji Miyamoto.
    • In Episode 10, they also put in a surprising amount of research in regards to pole dancing, of all things. The pole dancing moves done by Yuri and Christophe are not only accurate and have been identified as such by viewers who know how to pole dance, but said moves are also very difficult to pull off in real life.
    • The research is so good that it's actually recognizable wich figure skaters were used as the inspirations for their skating based on the characters skating styles. Yuri is a sensual "sexy" skater with strong high jumps, which strongly alludes to Daisuke Takahashi. Although Victor's backstory as a legendary figure skating champion would fit very well with Evgeni Plushenko's, it's actually Yurio whose skating style fits with his the closest. They are both incredible prodigies that have a fast, agile skating style with powerful jumps and high flexibility. Victor's skating style seems to be based of off Stephane Lambiel who was known for his elegant, yet manly skating style and his incredible spins in his active years.
    • Someone went through the trouble and animated over a show program that Takahashi and Lambiel skated toghether, and it fits Yuri and Victor to a tee.
  • Show Within a Show: Several of the songs the skaters use for their programs are from In-Universe movies, which reflects how figure skaters often perform to songs from movies in Real Life. The most notable example is "The King and the Skater"; it's Phichit's favorite movie, and he uses one of its songs along with a song from its sequel for his short program and free program. Mitsurou Kubo has actually written a full synopsis for "The King and the Skater".
  • Sneeze Cut: One instance happens in Episode 2: while Yakov is being interviewed about Victor's sudden decision to coach Yuri, the episode soon cuts to Victor sneezing and "waking up".
  • Special Guest:
    • Former figure skater Nobunari Oda appears in voice in the preview for Episode 11, and appears as himself to serve as a commentator for the Grand Prix Finals.
    • Choreographer and former figure skater Stéphane Lambiel appears in the final episode as a reporter.
  • Spell My Name with an "S": A lot of the characters' names in the anime suffer from this. An example would be Victor's dog's; is it "Maccachin", or "Makkachin"? Other examples would be:
    • Yuri or Yuuri?
    • Viktor or Victor?
    • Jean-Jacques or Jean-Jack?
    • In relation to the songs, some people use "In Regards To Love: Eros/Agape" and others "On Love: Eros/Agape". It seems that the Japanese original tends to the former, while translations and the English dub tend to the latter.
  • Spiritual Successor: To the Japan Animator Expo short ENDLESS NIGHT, which Sayo Yamamoto also directed. The short's primary focus (ice skating), core concepts, and some of its imagery (most notably that of two men pair skating together) are all transferred into this series.
  • Spit Take: Victor does this in Episode 10 when Yuri says that he couldn't even talk to Victor at last year's Grand Prix banquet. Victor then reveals that he and Yuri actually did talk; not only did they flirt and dance together, but Yuri begged Victor to be his coach. However, Yuri was so drunk that night that he doesn't remember any of it.
  • Stepford Smiler: It's quite telling how Yuri cheerfully explains how his skating season's gone down the drain in a cute, chibi artsyle. It's even worse when he's talking to his family, since he puts on a nice face for his mother when he talked about getting sixth in the Sochi Grand Prix Finals and then cried his poor heart out the minute he hangs up.
  • Stock Footage:
    • It only starts to become more apparent after the second episode or so. A lot of the programs borrow animation from Victor's championship program and Yurio's Agape program.
    • The audience members in the Rostelecom Cup are the same audience members from the China Cup with recolored hair and skin. This is changed in the DVD/Blu-ray release, where they're given more varied designs.
  • Suddenly SHOUTING!: In the first episode, Yurio talks to Yuri at a reasonable volume before abruptly yelling "Moron!" in his face.
  • Surprisingly Good English:
    • The opening theme, "History Maker", is entirely in English. The lyrics are grammatically correct and mostly well-pronounced, though sometimes with the Accent Upon The Wrong Syllable ("We'll make it hap-PEN!").
    • As noted in Freeze-Frame Bonus, the skaters' comments on their Instagram photos during the ending credits are all written in decent English.
    • In Episode 4, Yuko's text to Yurio is written in English, and it seems she's quite fluent in the language.
    • "Theme of King J.J." has lyrics that make sense (save a few) and is well-pronounced, as expected of a theme song about a Canadian character. It's sung by Swedish singer Linus Norda rather than J.J.'s voice actor.
  • Take That!: To Aeroflot, a Russian airline, when Victor says that the airline is the only other thing that has kept him waiting longer than Yuri has.
  • Talking Is a Free Action: Played with. They do not talk out loud while they're skating, though each skater has their own internal monologue that lasts as long as their programs, so the show employs a more realistic example of this trope.
  • Teacher/Student Romance: While both Victor and Yuri are fully-grown adults (with only a four year age gap and Yuri having graduated college during the time skip in Episode 1), they also have a mentor-protege relationship; their romance could be considered as this.
  • Technician vs. Performer:
    • Downplayed with the two Yuris. They are both talented and hardworking, but their differences as skaters are highlighted during their competition during Episode 3: Yurio's performance is perfect from a technical point of view, but he struggles to convey the emotional theme of his program. On the other hand, Yuri fumbles some jumps, but he expresses the theme of his program perfectly. As is usual with this trope, the latter wins the competition.
    • Other characters also showcase this trope: Yuri calls Phichit a born entertainer, and Phichit's goal isn't really competition-based: ultimately, he wants his own ice show to demonstrate how fun skating is. On the other end of the scale, Seung-Gil Lee is constantly calculating his points as he skates.
  • Third Line, Some Waiting: Since Yuri's comeback as a skater and his romance with Victor are the A and B plots of the anime, Yurio's story is the C plot, going Out of Focus or being reduced to one or two scenes an episode when he's not in the same geographic place as the other main characters. Viewers never even see his first Grand Prix qualifier, while Yuri's gets two whole episodes.
  • Time Skip: There are quite a few, relatively short ones in order to fit in the four main skating events that Yuri competes in. The most significant one is in the epilogue, which cuts from Yuri and Victor's exhibition skate to the main trio in Russia, with Yuri apparently having moved there with Victor and Yurio in the interim.
  • Translation Convention:
    • According to Word of God, Yuri and Victor speak to each other in English, which is why they both tend to use Gratuitous English when they have conversations. There are several implications that Victor only understands basic Japanese, but not enough to have a proper talk to Yuri in said language.
    • Generally, it also seems to be apparent that the international skaters, Minako and Yuko all speak English to each other and it's also likely that Takeshi, the triplets, Morooka and Mari probably speak English to some standard.
  • Two Lines, No Waiting: "Yuri's skating career/comeback" and "Yuri and Victor's romance" are the A and B plots, juggled and building off each other for most of the series, and each strong enough in their own right to earn the series a specific Periphery Demographic (figure skaters and their fans, and LGBT Fanbase/Yaoi Fans respectively).
  • Uncovering Relationship Status: In Episode 2, Victor inquires Yuri if he's dating at the moment, or if he's gone out with other people before. Yuri gives a negative for the former question, but refuses to answer the latter, and even stops Victor when he's about to reveal his own dating history.
  • Underdogs Never Lose: Contrary to what most would expect, this is averted when Yuri doesn't win the gold medal at the Grand Prix Finals; instead, it's Yurio who takes first place at the podium with Yuri placing at second. This is much less depressing example however, since Yurio wins only by a 0.12-point difference, and was driven to win so that Yuri wouldn't retire just yet and would continue skating for another season, which is exactly what happens.
  • Unreliable Narrator:
    • Its easy enough to miss, but in the first episode while explaining what he is to the viewer, Yuri calls himself a "dime-a-dozen skater", even though the visuals show he is actually the number one skater in Japan and he made it all the way to the final round of a world-class skating competition, even if he placed last.
    • Episode 10, which is the first episode told from Victor's point-of-view, is arguably all about the differences between how Yuri sees himself and how others — particularly the people who love and admire him — see him. There are earlier hints of this, though, like Minami's admiration for Yuri and how Yuri dismissing his past programs as a "dark age" affect him.
    • Yuri seems convinced that Victor will leave him for bigger and better things soon, and the audience largely goes along with this, not getting any other perspective on this... until Episode 10, which switches to Victor's perspective and makes it clear to the audience that he is actually smitten with Yuuri and why.
  • Weight Woe: Yuri has always struggled with his weight. After a few months of not participating in competitions, he's gained quite a few pounds.
  • We Named the Monkey "Jack": Yuri's deceased poodle is named Vicchan, after Victor. Which, by the way, he got because he saw that Victor himself owned a poodle. This was how Yuri learns that something is afoot when the suspiciously familiar pooch jumps him on his return from shoveling snow. note 
  • Wham Episode:
  • Wham Line:
    • Right before the preview for Episode 11, which turns the entire anime over its head: "If I win this dance-off, you'll become my coach right?"
    • At the end of Episode 11: "After the Finals... let's end this."
  • Wham Shot:
  • What Did I Do Last Night?: This trope is essentially the plot of the Yuri!!! on Stage script event, which begins with Yuri waking up with a bad hangover, Victor's underwear on his head and "Overcome Chihoko" written on his back. He and the other characters then try to figure out what happened the night before.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: One of the main features of the final episode is Yurio pushing himself to his limit to win gold... because he's furious/heartbroken at the prospect of Yuri retiring, and wants to take the gold to prevent Yuri from doing so and consequently quitting his career on a high note. He succeeds, but we don't get to see Yurio learn of Yuri's decision to keep skating; that revelation is reserved for Victor.
  • You Are Better Than You Think You Are: Victor implicitly tells Yuri this in Episode 5 after the latter lets out his feelings of self-inadequacy.
  • Younger Than They Look: There are some skaters who are younger than 20, but appear older than that.

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Anime/YuriOnIce