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* TactfulTranslation: In episode one Kong contemptuously compares his teammates practice session to a folk dance. The translator diplomatically relays that as "watching Japanese gameplay is very enlightening"


** Smile got his smile back, got the match of his lifetime against his friend and idol, Peco, on a must-watch tournament final no more.

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** Smile got his smile back, got the match of his lifetime against his friend and idol, Peco, on a must-watch tournament final no more.less.

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* EarnYourHappyEnding: For all 5.
** Peco got his drive in playing ping pong back, after hitting rock bottom and quitting after successive losses, becoming the high school champion, and eventually playing for Germany (manga)/Japan (anime) in the Olympics.
** Smile got his smile back, got the match of his lifetime against his friend and idol, Peco, on a must-watch tournament final no more.
** China got a family that is both proud of him and he can be proud of. He is now playing for Japan, under the name Tsujido Wenge, "Tsujido" being the school he played for: his family.
** Dragon finally has his lifelong burden lifted off his shoulders, starts enjoying playing ping pong again after having a match against Peco, giving him his "wings".
** Akuma no longer has to force himself to play ping pong when he cannot go above his ceiling, now lives a fulfilling life with a wife and kids.


''Ping Pong'' is a Japanese sports series that had its humble origins with a manga by surrealist Taiyo Matsumoto, best known for ''Anime/{{Tekkonkinkreet}}'' and ''Sunny''. The series ran between 1996-7 in the magazine Big Comic Spirits. Time passed and, lo and behold, another adaptation came to fruition. The 2002 live-action film, directed by Fumihiko Sori, was considered widely successful. The film was important in establishing Shidō Nakamura II as a bankable star, who won a Japanese Academy Award for the role of Dragon. Over a decade later, the series would resurface again as an anime called ''Ping Pong: The Animation''. Directed by Creator/MasaakiYuasa, often considered to be Matsumoto's anime equal, the series premiered in the spring season of 2014, quickly becoming a sleeper hit over an eleven episode run.

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''Ping Pong'' is a Japanese sports series that had its humble origins with a manga by surrealist Taiyo Matsumoto, best known for ''Anime/{{Tekkonkinkreet}}'' and ''Sunny''. The series ran between 1996-7 in the magazine Big Comic Spirits. Time passed and, lo and behold, another an adaptation came to fruition. The 2002 live-action film, directed by Fumihiko Sori, was considered widely successful. The film was important in establishing Shidō Nakamura II as a bankable star, who won a Japanese Academy Award for the role of Dragon. Over a decade later, the series would resurface again as an anime called ''Ping Pong: The Animation''. Directed by Creator/MasaakiYuasa, often considered to be Matsumoto's anime equal, the series premiered in the spring season of 2014, quickly becoming a sleeper hit over an eleven episode run.


* CripplingTheCompetition: In ''Ping Pong: The Animation'', Coach Koizumi shares a tale with Smile: In his youth, he ended up playing the finale of a tournament, which would have have made his career, against his best friend. Said best friend had a hurt knee and Koizumi knew he could probably win if he intentionally kept playing towards that knee with the intent of overburdening it, but chose not to and therefore lost. In the climax of the anime [[spoiler:Smile and Peco are put against each other in the BigGame's finale, but Peco hurt his knee in the quarter-finals. The last thing we see [[OffscreenMomentOfAwesome before the match]] is Smile telling Koizumi "[[CallBack I can do it]]". Cut to the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue and we learn he didn't.]]

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* CripplingTheCompetition: In ''Ping Pong: The Animation'', Coach Koizumi shares a tale with Smile: In his youth, he ended up playing the finale of a tournament, which would have have made his career, against his best friend. Said best friend had a hurt knee and Koizumi knew he could probably win if he intentionally kept playing towards that knee with the intent of overburdening it, but chose not to and therefore lost. In the climax of the anime [[spoiler:Smile and Peco are put against each other in the BigGame's finale, but Peco hurt his knee in the quarter-finals. The last thing we see [[OffscreenMomentOfAwesome before the match]] is Smile telling Koizumi "[[CallBack I can do it]]". Cut to the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue it]]", explaining that Peco was a hero, and we learn he didn't."Heroes donít have weak points.". Peco won anyways.]]

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* ArcWords: "The hero appears" and "Blood tastes like iron." [[TitleDrop The latter becoming the title of the last episode of the anime.]]


* BrilliantButLazy: Most people's opinion of Smile vis-a-vis his table tennis skills.

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* BrilliantButLazy: BrilliantButLazy:
**
Most people's opinion of Smile vis-a-vis his table tennis skills.


* MeaningfulRename: [[spoiler: Kong Wenge in the epilogue. After he made the Japanese Olympic team, he became a citizen of the nation and took the name Tsujido Wenge, after his high school ping pong team]].

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* MeaningfulRename: [[spoiler: Kong Wenge in the epilogue. After Before he made the Japanese Olympic team, he became a citizen of the nation and took the name Tsujido Wenge, after his high school ping pong team]].


Not to be confused with ''Manga/ThePingPongClub'', though considering the style and tones of both shows, that's not going happening any time soon.

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Not to be confused with ''Manga/ThePingPongClub'', though considering the style and tones of both shows, that's not going to be happening any time soon.

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* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Sakuma is initially introduced as [[ArrogantKungFuGuy Arrogant Ping Pong Guy]], but attitude aside, he is shown to genuinely care about his friends and teammates, and even [[spoiler:literally saves Peco's life]] at one point.


* CripplingTheCompetition: In ''Ping Pong: The Animation'', Coach Koizumi shares a tale with Smile: In his youth, he ended up playing the finale of a tournament, which would have have made his career, against his best friend. Said best friend had a hurt knee and Koizumi knew he could probably win if he intentionally kept playing towards that knee with the intent of overburdening it, but chose not to and therefore lost. In the climax of the anime [[spoiler:Smile and Pedro are put against each other in the BigGame's finale, but Pedro hurt his knee in the quarter-finals. The last thing we see [[OffscreenMomentOfAwesome before the match]] is Smile telling Koizumi "[[CallBack I can do it]]". Cut to the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue and we learn he didn't.]]
* CoolOldLady: Obababa (Grandmother), who runs the local Ping Pong shop.

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* CripplingTheCompetition: In ''Ping Pong: The Animation'', Coach Koizumi shares a tale with Smile: In his youth, he ended up playing the finale of a tournament, which would have have made his career, against his best friend. Said best friend had a hurt knee and Koizumi knew he could probably win if he intentionally kept playing towards that knee with the intent of overburdening it, but chose not to and therefore lost. In the climax of the anime [[spoiler:Smile and Pedro Peco are put against each other in the BigGame's finale, but Pedro Peco hurt his knee in the quarter-finals. The last thing we see [[OffscreenMomentOfAwesome before the match]] is Smile telling Koizumi "[[CallBack I can do it]]". Cut to the WhereAreTheyNowEpilogue and we learn he didn't.]]
* CoolOldLady: Obababa Obaba (Grandmother), who runs the local Ping Pong shop.


** When Peco takes a test, he doodles ''NeonGenesisEvangelion'' characters and quotes all over the paper.

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** When Peco takes a test, he doodles ''NeonGenesisEvangelion'' ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' characters and quotes all over the paper.

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* AwesomenessByAnalysis: Smile's playstyle. Against stronger opponents, he generally goes easy for the first game to feel out their shots, and then annihilates them by hitting their weaknesses over and over again until they become too demoralized to play.


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* ConfusionFu: Peco's preferred style. He doesn't conform to any established mode of play, darts all over the table, and switches up his rubber so often that it's impossible to predict his shots. Wenge notes that it's perfect for his exuberance for table tennis.

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** Peco is even more blatant, to the point where he actually loses several matches that he expected himself to be able to coast through, being on the receiving end of more than one CurbStompBattle from Wenge in the first few episodes.

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* HardWorkHardlyWorks: Sakuma puts in ten times the effort of all the other major characters combined to excel at table tennis, but his astigmatism and lack of natural talent prevents him from ever surpassing them. His crappy attitude doesn't help matters, and gives Smile reason to utterly crush him when they face off.

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