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Broken Base / Yuri!!! on Ice

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The more popular a show is, the more discourses there are. And Yuri!!! on Ice is not an exception.

  • In regards to the fanservice. Half the viewers were more than okay with it and regarded it as an extra treat that doesn't distract from the story. The other half are frustrated with it (no, not that way) and state that it doesn't add anything to the plot or the characters. Basically, it comes down to two fronts — those who originally came for the Cast Full of Pretty Boys, and those who originally came to watch a sports anime about ice skating.
    • There was also a divide on whether Yuri/Yurio is a morally defensible ship, with one party being fifteen and the other twenty-three. This went away as the ship receded in popularity due to Yuri and Victor becoming an Official Couple.
  • As expected, the English dub. While there's very little complaint about the voices or the acting themselves (in particular, you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone who dislikes Josh Grelle's Yuri), Funimation's decision to give Victor and Yurio Russian accents has the fanbase split in half. Some enjoy the Adorkable flair it gives the characters and think that it makes sense because, well, they're both Russian. Others think the accents are just plain hammy and make it hard to take any of the scenes they're in seriously. At the very least, all fans agree that the accents are more or less decent/passable when compared to J.J.'s English voice.
  • Yurio's presence in the story. Despite technically being one of the titular characters, a lot of fans have taken to viewing him as the awkward third-wheel in the main character lineup given the brevity of his appearances in the later episodes and the minimal attention his storyline gets after Episode 3, feeling he would have been better placed in a different series or in a season of his own. Others don't mind the diverging storylines or the comparative lack of paced development he receives, either because they approve of the decision to put narrative focus on Yuri and Victor, or believe that had he stayed in Japan he would have been flanderized as The Baby of the Bunch and his arc would have received none of the progression it otherwise would have, or some combination of both. Though as the latter half of the show came out, many started to think that Yurio's emotional immaturity and angry outbursts already pegged him as the "young" character, and not in a good way; to some, he stood out among the more reasonably level-headed adults in the cast. Another set of fans feel that he would've been better if he was cast as a side character instead, given that besides posing as another challenger for Yuri and keeping him from winning gold (which is already a Broken Base for many fans), he doesn't have much involvement in the plot as a main character.
    • Raise your hand if you're part of the section of the fandom who thought too much of the animation budget for Episode 6 went towards Christophe's ass. There's also Christophe grabbing Yuri's ass; to some fans it came off as Christophe's funny Establishing Character Moment and to others, it was an absolutely repulsive harassment. The latter issue soon dropped after Episode 10 came out, due to the reveal that both Yuri and Christophe pole-danced together before and were wearing only their underwear at the time, and Christophe thought Yuri remembered what happened.
  • Otabek/Yurio has been a surprisingly intense source of drama in the English-speaking fandom. Otabek is 18 and Yurio is 15, making them equivalent to a high school senior or college freshman (given where Otabek's birthday falls) dating a high school sophomore in the U.S. school system. While in real life that might raise some eyebrows with a lot of parents, it's not that uncommon of an age gap in teen fiction and few would call it inherently problematic. But as certain fandom spaces, particularly on Tumblr and Discord, have increasingly tried to push back against troubling relationship dynamics in fiction, there's been a lot of overreach with anything involving a legal adult and a minor deemed as "abusive" or even "pedophilic." Even Leo and Guang-Hong, who have an even smaller age gap at 19 and 17 respectively, have had similar reactions. (Never mind that laws vary by country, and that in Japan, none of these characters are "legal adults"...) And unfortunately, people with more reasonable caveats — liking Otabek/Yurio but thinking they should wait a few years before a Relationship Upgrade, or not being a fan of sexual fanfiction about them but ok with romance — get slammed by both sides.
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  • Even though the entire fandom is elated over the fact that Yuri and Victor are engaged, there continues to be an increasingly heated debate over one little detail: did Yuri buy only one engagement ring and Victor had already purchased a similar kind beforehand, or did Yuri buy a pair of engagement rings? While one-half of the fandom doesn't care either way, the other half isn't willing to drop it so easily. This finally came to a stop when Word of God confirms that Yuri purchased both rings.
  • Yuri winning the Grand Prix Finals versus Yurio winning. In Yuri's case, fans cite the win as a major setback in writing, as while the show has been decent in keeping cliches out of the writing, the win and what comes afterwards (marriage) would set the whole thing up with not only a cliche in sports anime (dying starlet comes back from the brink), but a fairytale ending included (Yuri wins, gets married to Victor and everyone lives happily ever after). In Yurio's case it's less about cliches and more about how he was handled as a character; after his less-than-pleasant interactions with the cast, especially after Episodes 10 and 11, a win in his case would boost his ego more than anything and make him gain nothing from all of the stuff he's been put through that year, while a loss (or at least not getting gold) would give him a slice of Humble Pie and make him work for the gold next season. Anyone else winning is perfectly acceptable, just as long as it's someone the fans care about.
    • Lo and behold, in the last episode, Yurio does win, but only by a very slim margin against Yuri. He retains his Character Development — his final performance was driven by Victor dropping the bombshell of Yuri's possible retirement. Yurio's efforts in winning gold is an expression of agape, motivating Yuri to rethink his decision by making him regret giving up.
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    • More than anything, the final episode. Even with a sequel coming soon, many fans complain that the ending is rushed, unsatisfying, anticlimactic, and doesn't provide a proper resolution to anything to make the series impart a sense of closure. Other fans state that while some plot points could have been done a lot better and there are still a lot of things that need to be resolved, it doesn’t change the fact that there will be a sequel to take care of it, and that the finale is still fulfilling in its own right. They even state that the other fans are disappointed because they expected too much, and point out that despite the romance between Victor and Yuri being a major plot element, it's still a sports anime and there are several other competitions held in the figure skating season, which means that the Grand Prix isn't the end-all-be-all of the story. Other fans find consolation in the fact that, with the writers intending the ending to have Yuri not win the gold medal, had no choice but to perform an Ass Pull to make said outcome possible, because there was no plausible way Yuri would lose — thereby essentially admitting that between both Yuris, Yuri is indeed the better skater.
  • There is also the fact that J.J. won bronze over Otabek in the Grand Prix Final, despite Otabek performing both routines perfectly while J.J. had a dismal short program and made a few mistakes in his free skate. While J.J.'s free skate score was possible due to his program being much more difficult than Otabek's, his short program score should not have been possible. Overall, the fandom is split between those who are okay with J.J. winning bronze, since he had more Character Development, and those who believe Otabek should have won.
  • Victor's decision in Episode 12 to continue skating and being Yuri's coach. While everyone's excited to see Victor compete once again, you have more than one fan saying that his decision is a horrible idea, considering that he's already nearing retirement and with having to act both as a coach and a competitor, he has too much to carry on his plate in both his professional and his private life. Essentially, he wants to have his cake and eat it, too. However, those invested in the skating part see potential in the conflict between Yuri and Victor competitively, and people have been clamoring for him to get further Character Development than what they got in the first cour.
  • Do you spell Victor's name with a "c", or with a "k"? And yes, it's that heated.
  • Yurio's exhibition skate. Since it's obviously designed as further Ship Tease for Otabek/Yurio, reactions tend to reflect how people feel about that ship. Of course, some are just unnerved by Yurio being sexualized—or, alternately, very turned on by that. Still others find it funny, in how it reflects Yurio as a rebellious teenager constantly trying to be "edgier." However, all sides more or less agree that the animation is very well done.
  • There have been some surprisingly intense debates about who is the top vs. the bottom between Victor and Yuri, since neither of them fall into the obvious Seme and Uke roles common in Yaoi Genre works (which Yuri!!! on Ice is not). If not that, it's about them being dominant vs. submissive, and whether or not certain sexually-charged scenes in the show (like Victor kissing Yuri's skate, or Yuri grabbing his tie) "hint" at that one way or another...and then that gets the people who see dom/sub behavior as gross or immoral involved. It's to the point that uninvolved fans have joked it proves fans will be desperate to find something else to fight about when there's no Ship War. If the fans all like the Official Couple, then they'll fight about how to ship the Official Couple.
  • Yuri's sexuality label has become one. On first watch, many fans were convinced he was canonically bisexual, as going into it blind, his first "Stammi vicino" skate comes across as a romantic confession toward Yuko, and he calls her "cute" at one point. On second watch, though, knowing that Yuko is Happily Married and the significance of that scene for Yuri and Victor, it comes across as a Bait-and-Switch... playing with how audiences will assume any connection between a man and a woman is romantic and fill in the blanks. (It doesn't help that Sayo Yamamoto is fond of that kind of misdirection.) There are other parts that suggest he might be gay, such as how much is made of him not having had a girlfriend — though it seems Yuri hasn't had many romantic partners at all — or his discomfort with girls who were interested in him in the past — though that too could be due to other reasons, like Don't You Dare Pity Me!. Point is, the show never makes Yuri's precise place on the Kinsey Scale quite clear, and there's a lot to support either interpretation. Given legitimate concerns about representation for both groups, and the tendency of fans to identify with Yuri and therefore interpret him as however they identify... and cue flamewar. And there are lesser versions of this with basically every other character, except Victor — whom fans seem to generally agree is gay — and Georgi — whom everyone is fine saying is 100% straight.


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