Posted by psgels on 27 September 2007 with categories: Anime Reviews


When I first read the premise of this series, I expected nothing of this series. A swimming-club where the main female lead likes to swim around in the nude. Fanservice anyone? Imagine my surprise when Umisho actually turned out (*gasp*) enjoyable. That’s probably the first for any fanservice-anime out there.

So, yes, there’s fanservice, and a lot of it. But while most other harems and similar series have characters with what I’d like to call the “paper-bag-syndrome” (by not being able to think for themselves, having no personality and being as interesting to watch as a paper bag), the creators of Umisho have put a bit of extra work to them. Fair enough, they all start out as clichés, but right from the start it becomes clear that every single character has one or more elements that go way beyond clichés and make them really fun to watch. Think of a shy big-breasted girl who is actually secretly a pervert, or the childhood friend who used to horribly abuse the male lead in the past, and of course the male captain of the swimming-team, who for once isn’t a huge pervert but instead a giant creep without any sense of shame. You’ll understand when you see him.

There’s also been a nice amount of detail put in the setting, where the competition between different swimming-clubs gets a nice amount of development, and every member of the club has at least an identifiable character-design. The character-designs are rather “pleasing” to the eye and the soundtrack gives the series a light overall tone. Overall, it’s one of the best fanservice-anime I’ve seen this far.

But yeah, there are enough times when this series loses itself in its excessive fanservice. Some scenes were just too outrageous and blatantly obvious that it nearly became painful. This series would definitely have been even better without the useless fanservice. Then there’s also the matter of the obligatory drama and romance that show up once in a while. It works in about 40% of the cases. The others are a tad too forced and aimed at fanboys.

It’s really nice to be finally proven wrong in my bias against fanservice-anime. Umisho is energetic, has likable characters who can think for themselves (really, at times we hear huge inner monologues when certain characters are attempting something stupid), and I laughed quite a bit at times. It’s nowhere near the best series out there but it remains fun to watch.

One Response

  1. Patrick Monti says:

    I started watching this series expecting nothing, after I recognized that the name was mentioned in your blog. And it’s been a refreshing and funny short series. Sometimes you are too tired to watch and think about Higurashi, Terra e or such and it’s in those moments that I prefer watching series like Umisho or Potemayo.

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  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 05:37 AM)
    True, assuming of course that the latter installment is indeed better. Resident evil 5 was no 4. That’s for sure.
    I liked that you could time R1 to give you more damage for attacking with Quall. And it was nice that summons leveled up. So that your earlier summons don’t become completely useless in the endgame.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 03:46 AM)
    I also enjoyed FF8 quite a lot. I appreciate cinematic presentations and 8 delivered that with a lot of style. The visuals were amazing and the the music was great, and if you learned the GF BOOST ability you used the much-maligned long summon animations to stack up on some damage.
  • Bam
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 03:42 AM)
    @Aidan: I used a common example, but of course everyone had a different experience with the FF series, but the point being that it’s often hard to go back to earlier titles after playing the better later installments; especially for DS which is just a modified and improved DeS.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 01:28 AM)
    Anyway the main reason I amnot wanting to linger on Demon souls is just that I have far more games to play and don’t really want to spend my entire vacation on it. I got the uncharted’s to get though after all.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 01:26 AM)
    Kafka was a good villain but everyone really has over-hyped him. FF7 is overrated but FF6 is put on too high a pedestal. Like FF9.
  • AidanAK47
    (Monday, May 4. 2015 01:26 AM)
    @Bam, bad comparison for me. FF7 may be overrated as all hell but it still is to me the best Final fantasy. I played ff6 and found it downright tedious. I had more fun playing FF8 and everyone seems to think that’s the worst one…though I don’t. I barely remember any of the story of FF6 and I just found it a slog to get though. Mostly finished it out of obligation.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 3. 2015 10:57 PM)
    It’s always a little bit underwhelming when you play an earlier game of an improving series before the later ones. It’s like playing FF6 as kid as your first FF game and then going and finding FFV and playing that while hoping it’s as good as 6.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 3. 2015 10:52 PM)
    The levels are simple and rather small and linear, but each world has a great and unique atmosphere and variety. The Tower of Latria is specially atmospheric and the game suddenly takes on a much darker and almost horror game feel to it.
  • Bam
    (Sunday, May 3. 2015 10:48 PM)
    @Aidan: yeah I could see how somebody would just want to run thru the game once, but there are a lot of cool weapons, armor and story quests that you can do with tendencies. The PVP is fun and simple as well, and weirdly has much better collision detection than DSI&II.
  • AidanAK47
    (Sunday, May 3. 2015 02:49 PM)
    I wasn’t keen on the levels though. There were not quite as visually interesting as dark souls environments.

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