Yuri Talk: Sakura Trick – Quelling the Hate (By Shoujo Aisha)

Seriously? Some fans are still calling this a guilty pleasure? I know some have their reasons but to call Sakura Trick a bad yuri show is an injustice reserved solely to the prudish and the highbrow, not the general yuri audience. It’s like saying too much kissing between women in a show that’s as gay as it gets is a bad thing. I like subtext and subtlety as much as the next person but if I were given a choice I WOULD PICK LEGITIMACY EVERY SINGLE TIME DAMN IT!
Ending and breasts physics aside I see no other reason to call it a “guilty pleasure” or deem it hateful. Oh and it has actual romantic storylines FYI.

But what do I know? I’m just a yuri fan who appreciates shows that don’t hold anything back. Like we don’t get enough of those huh? “sarcastic tone”.

Anyway I’m sure some will do their best to justify their hate or guilt. Bring it on.

The problem is not with viewers who thought the show was average, it’s with viewers who dismiss it as being objectifying, disgusting or ashamed of having enjoyed it like it’s some sort of sinful crime.

おはモニ

[Mezashite] Sakura Trick - 01 [CE6A102E].mkv_snapshot_06.29_[2015.11.12_19.55.10]


If you’re a fan of the series, you’ve probably stumbled across a truckload of hate being piled on the show, heck, even people who enjoyed it have considered it to be a guilt watch. The formula of Yuri and Kissing had certainly been an invitation for people to hurl the word objectification and dismiss the show for trying to be different. As someone who loves Sakura Trick, it is frustrating to see that it is so gravely misunderstood.

Fanservice

Let’s first look at one area this show has constantly been attacked, fanservice. I can understand a person being uncomfortable with fanservice in the series, but vocal haters are using this to draw their conclusion that the show is trying to objectify lesbians, its even to the point that they think the kissing is nothing more than service to the audience.

Now, there is something really wrong with the idea that…

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About OG-Man

Yuri and Slice of Life are my anime passion.
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28 Responses to Yuri Talk: Sakura Trick – Quelling the Hate (By Shoujo Aisha)

  1. cirno9fan says:

    I dunno, as both a yuri and slice of life fan, I don’t feel it combined things the best. GG was defiitely an example of two things blending together really well, but Sakura Trick felt like it lost sight of the slice of life, and then the romance parts just kinda did a 180, and then a 360, and the story was a bit of a mess.

    I like CGDCT shows because they actually do have a lot of continuity to them, and there actually IS character development. But it tends to happen over things that the common person doesn’t accept as reasons for a character to develop. And Sakura Trick had this, but sometimes it felt like it was getting retconned, or being reversed.

    I just think that the author didn’t know what to do with the series at one point, and sorta restarted. That’s not a bad thing at all, but the show ended before we could see the developments from that.

    Another thing is that, in place of moments of great character interaction…we got lots of making out. which, yay! But at the same time, it started to feel hollow, especially when the “is this love?” stuff came out of nowhere (especially after episodes that they talked about marrying each other…). Like the kissing was nothing but filler.

    Maybe with a rewatch someday I’ll come to appreciate it in a different light? Who knows! I will say that the side couple was handled far better than the whole HaruYuuMitsu thing.

    Either way, I agree that people shouldn’t feel bad for liking this.

    Like

    • OG-Man says:

      Yeah I only follow the basic requirements of SoL 101 so I have no ides what you consider the must haves of an SoL. The character development in most Girls Club anime is simplistic for critics to take seriously

      Only thing that had a retcon feel to it was Haruka and Yuu at the end but that depends on a human being’s understanding of what true love is and when they GET what said feelings but I highly doubt it would require that much thought on a show like this.

      Talk to the mangaka about continuity.

      In a show/manga where lots of kissing is the main draw, no duh.

      Maybe in 15 years like Daybreak Illusion or however long it takes for stuff to become “cult classics”.

      Like

  2. elkat4 says:

    While I have some trouble with the fanservice, I would never call it a guilty pleasure. The fanservice in itself may not be the best planned out party of the anime, it is no grounds to condemning the kissing as “objectifying lesbians”!
    As for the lack of drama, I myself enjoyed the severe lack of needlessly convoluted drama. I avoid reading manga with drama tags on Dynasty Scans unless I know the drama has nothing to do with the story’s romance.
    As for character development, slice of life is not a genre known for having its characters grow significantly over the course of the story. Not every story needs its main characters to go a grand of adventure of self discovery and personal growth.
    In summary, I feel most people who hate on Sakura Trick do so only because the anime refuses to meet their expectations which is a horrible basis to judge an anime on.

    Like

    • OG-Man says:

      It’s like certain yuri fans consider lesbians who kiss each other a lot some kind of anomaly.

      Even one of the greatest Girls Club anime of all time, Hidamari Sketch, doesn’t feature character development of galactic proportions. It’s straightforward stuff all the way.

      Gakkou Gurashi’s one of the few shows with SoL elements that has deep character development but that’s only because of its setting.

      That or it doesn’t appeal to them. This post is directed to people who saw it from beginning to end, not people who prematurely dismissed it.

      Like

  3. Fipse says:

    Luckily I never noticed all that hate towards Sakura Trick but I kinda expected i from some western yuri fans.
    I admit the show is (sadly) below average for me but it certainly does not deserve that much hatred.

    The show/manga simply suffers from being too focused on the kisses and dragging out the status quo for too long. Not really a Sakura Trick specific problem. Many shows let their characters act like idiots to drag out the plot. In this case the kissing without realizing it is actual love…

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  4. bcy says:

    I shall say it over and over if required: Sakura Trick is a timeless masterpiece.

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  5. yurimylove says:

    Sakura Trick is a 10/10 in my book, and that’s all that matters to me… 💕

    Like

  6. makotachi says:

    While I did not deem Sakura Trick inherently offensive, and I don’t hate it I just am sort of okay with it, I will have to admit that it can come across as rather objectifying and fetishistic about lesbians. There isn’t much focus on characters and there is a lot of focus on their bodies and just them making out rather than their relationship, that does not mean it’s a bad thing though it all depends on context and sadly, Sakura Trick doesn’t really have that much of. The thing is, making authoritative statements about the series isn’t really anyone’s place other than lesbians since they’re the ones who live with the ramifications of fetishization and objectification of their sexuality. Even then it’s not like someone can’t enjoy problematic material, but it’s a matter of recognizing the issue with it with your enjoyment is all and the effect of the enjoyment may have to those who don’t realize the issues and etc.

    In the very least, compared to other series that are clear, obvious series of objectified and fetishized lesbians Sakura Trick is very tame to other examples I can think of.

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    • OG-Man says:

      Society’s so prudish and squeamish that a day might come that even the act of two ladies holding hands or having one hand over the shoulder would be seen as “fanservice”.

      Like

  7. KueKyuuQ says:

    I just recently binged Legend of Korra.
    LOK featured several straight-couple kisses. And zero same-sex-couple kisses. Because straight-kisses are “okay”. But the mere implication of a gay-/bi-sexual romance toward the end of the show split the audience. While the implication itself was excitedly hyped by some, the creators had to deal with being blamed by others for “fanserving”.

    What’s it got to do with Sakura Trick?
    There are hundreds of anime out there, that deal with boy-meets-girl and uncountable straight-kisses depicted. And here we have a sweet SoL, portraying a developing relationship between girls who kiss on screen. More than once. And I read that there are people out there shaming it “fanservice”. ((throws in tiny rage-fit, beware the rant…))

    When I hear “fanservice”, I rather think of Valkyrie Drive than Sakura Trick. ST serves its fans (doesn’t every show?), but in a good way; even in an educating way of sorts – life is confusing, romance even more so. Lovers’ obstacles more often than not consist of “the little things”. And the latter being exactly what Slice of Life is about. – And the thing called Life comes in many shades and facets.

    Bouncy cleavage aside, sure, the kiss moments are rather “graphic”, but in an aesthetic manner – the focus of the physical aspects are on closeness, a sense of longing, a certain amount of restraint and insecurity, and just the right amount of sense of exploration, curiosity and desire. There’s moaning, but due to the kiss itself, not due to any kind of touchy-touchy groping. It’s sufficiently intense that way, amazingly so.
    To me, personally, there surely is its own kind of “fanservice”, serving my need for a emotionally convoluted “teenage girls trying to find their pace in a romantic and physical relationship while trying to make sense of its meaning”. Convoluted not so much by exterior aspects (though, there are some, should always be unless the MCs are stranded alone on a secluded island), but the SoL-factor limits these to their own social micro-cosmos. The main focus is still the complexity of being a teenager, a school-girl, of being human.

    Maybe the mangaka had to find their footing first in regards of telling their tale; but so did/do the characters. I don’t consider it a failure, for the mere fact that this (partial retconning, expansion of universe, emotional backs and forths and growths, et al) gives it a natural feel, a different but much appreciated twist in story-telling, and leads to an organic construction – as the girls learn more and expand their horizon, the audience does too.

    Personally that’s what I adore about Sakura Trick. The show starts off right within the grey-area; somewhere between any other show’s Happy Ending (yay! they kiss! –what now? that’s it?!) and the beginning of their own path of romance and relationship. One that feels even more realistic to me than most of tv-history’s Happy Endings: Most real life relationships neither get manifested by nor reach their climax with a kiss; the first shared kiss is barely ever the conclusion. Young and old, romance is messy; there’s a lot of awkwardness, misunderstandings, fumbling about and attempts to read each another – and oneself.

    Do I feel guilty for enjoying this show?
    Certainly not. Nor should anyone who appreciates romance (straight or gay). I enjoy the ease of the SoL-genre, which ST is a proper example of. It features some eye-candy-shots, but hey, I am watching Anime! What else is new?

    What do I say to those who do?
    Get over yourself. And/or adjust your expectations according to the genre in front of you – you don’t go into a Musical and to be shocked when ppl start singing (even if it’s Hugh Jackman XD).
    And if it’s two girls kissing – explicitly but delicately no less – it shall not be any no more fanservice than any other on-screen couple kissing or making out. And if that already makes you uncomfortable as well, then that’s okay too. But you might consider avoiding these genre altogether, rather than attempting to shame anyone else into feeling uncomfortable.
    Tastes differ, accept and respect that. No hate nor blame required.
    Even when Wolverine bursts into song…

    Like

    • OG-Man says:

      Ah yes. Who can forget the “legendary” love triangle that was Korra-Mako-Asami. Tru;y the greatest love story ever told in the history of animation…
      I have little to say about your rant/argument as to why ST is not shameful or objectifying. You covered most of what I said when I reviewed the anime last year in greater detail.
      Little can be done to sway the opinions of others who think little of this show, flaws, retcons, breast physics and all but hey, it makes the story feel more natural when both the creator and creations evolve with each passing chapter and it actually showing. That’s how I see it anyway.

      Like

  8. Shoujo Aisha says:

    Thanks for the mention! Caught me off guard seeing my post here after waking up.

    Like

  9. mirrorpurple says:

    This is a very sensitive topic for me

    Like

  10. baba says:

    Umm, I dont think I’ve ever thought of Sakura Trick as a guilty pleasure, but I think it is average, almost bad. I watched it all, and I enjoyed it but it lacks so much. its not really because of the kisses, I think the kisses were well done and what I consider normal, its mostly because of the plot that goes nowhere. Sometimes it seems like its going somewhere and then nothing happens, and because of that most of the episodes felt like fillers or something. I personally liked more the other couple, since they actually seemed to be in a relationship, their moments were better done.
    So, it was just ok, but maybe because Im not used to watching a Yuri show that has so many kisses and didnt really seemed to be made only for fanservice, at least to me, thats the reason of why I enjoyed it. if more Yuri animes existed, my opinion wouldnt be the same.
    Do I want a 2nd season? No.
    Do I want more shows like Sakura trick? Not really.
    Would I watch a second of ST or/and another Yuri anime with a similar plot that goes nowhere? Yes. Because theres a lack of yuri animes.

    This reminds me of Citrus, I think its bad and I dont read it, but thats because I already read other yuri stories that can replace it, but if Citrus gets an anime I would watch it.

    Does it make sense? Haha

    Like

  11. the_elevator_man says:

    Somehow, I have a feeling that this may have been a bit too late. I mean, these arguments have been here before, almost 2 years ago now. Yuri, indeed all shows, have pushed the envelope so far so fast nowadays that Sakura Trick seems almost innocent. Cross Ange? Yurikuma? Valkyrie Drive? It’s not “the greatest” by any stretch. And on its surface, it might seem shallow or trivial. But it doesn’t warrant a deep-seated hatred.

    That said, I might just be bitter that Haruka/Yuu beat out Chimeko in Lena’s yuri pair tourney. Funny enough, I find that to be more of an underlying guilt pleasure that I can understand people really directing legit hate towards.

    Like

  12. chikorita157 says:

    I don’t get why would this would be a guilty pleasure since there is nothing that can be considered as such…

    As always, haters gonna hate. and it always seems that the complaints of slice of life shows with cute girls are always coming from the same people that doesn’t seem to like them at all. Best to take their opinions with a grain of salt since they are subjective after all.

    Like

  13. mutopis says:

    haters going to hate

    Like

    • OG-Man says:

      In the end that’s what it all comes down to. No matter how much I and others who justify the show being more than meets the eye, even Shoujo Aisha said it, “haters gonna hate”.

      Like

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