365th G-View: Harukana Receive

In 2016 an anime aired that forever changed my life. I am of course referring to KEIJO!!!!!!!! While not for everyone it brought great joy to my life. So much so I deemed it one of my favorite anime of all time. Unfortunately due to reasons beyond the mangaka’s control (which we won’t discuss here) the manga was cancelled, meaning no potential 2nd season. Luckily the sadness I felt would be short lived when a beach volleyball anime was announced. The one thing I hoped for was that this show would fill the gap left behind from KEIJO!!!!!!!!’s cancellation. Did it do the trick? Let us find out as we take a look at Harukana Receive.

Harukana Receive Poster

Genres: Sports, Tournament

Themes: Beach Volleyball, Yuri

Number of episodes: 12

G-Rating: 10/10

Plot Summary: Haruka is a girl who has a complex about how she is very tall, and Kanata is about to give up beach volleyball because she is too short. With Haruka’s height and Kanata’s experience, the two girls form a pair to play beach volleyball in Okinawa.

Haruka using a Pokey

Plenty of sexy and intense volleyball action await the interested.

Harukana Receive is the tale of a spunky newcomer and veteran who lost her mojo teaming up and work their sexy butts off to become the best women’s beach volleyball players in Japan. That and other personal reasons. Along with the lead duo there are other sexy teams playing the sport and giving it all they have on the sandy court. They too have their personal reasons for playing. Their is a nickname I gave this show but I will get to that later. Put simply Harukana Receive is a show about sexy girls playing beach volleyball and overcoming some personal issues along the way. Both of which it does very well.

Kanata sending the ball

First of all let us talk about the volleyball. As is the case with most anime/manga about a specific subject, be it a sport, historical time period or weapons, expect to be educated on it in some capacity. Like with most of these shows I learned a thing or two about the rules of beach volleyball that I previously did not know. When it comes to the volleyball itself it took the sport as seriously as viewers hoped.

Haruka pouting

Plenty of close-ups of the hotties blessed melons and booties also await the interested.

Of course viewers will get plenty of fantastic shots of the beach beauties’ assets (gunns, booties and sweaty muscles) of both large and small variety (especially when it comes to hand signals). The attention to detail is impressive. Not quite at the level of Hanebado! but still quite good. However, do not think for a minute that the sexiness takes away from the action (unless the viewer dislikes anime sexiness in general, then clearly this show is not for them). One example are the many booty shots where we also get to see hand signals from the girl in front to guide her partner on their strategy. The sexiness and intensity of the sport go hand in hand in perfect unity. Most of the matches, especially tournament bouts are as steamy as they are exciting to watch. The intensity of every smash, spike and even “pokey” can be felt from the monitor/screen to the living room or wherever the viewer is watching the show. Trust me when I say the show delivers what one would expect from a sports anime.

Ayasa comforting Narumi

Powerful moment. Also OG’s best girl Narumi (black hair).

Next up are the personal issues. It is what one would expect but thankfully nowhere near super dramatic. They are straightforward obstacles each girl must overcome to grow stronger. The plot summary mentions both Haruka and Kanata having issues with their respective heights. Well those are settled very quickly. In fact, Kanata’s personal issues are not as simple as her short stature. There is more to it than that yet it is easy to follow and understand. The same goes for the other girls’ obstacles. I much prefer the drama in sports anime being simple and not overblown.

Haruka vs Mai

This was a fun match.

On to the presentation. As described in the above paragraph the animation is quite good. From the detail in the girls’ bodies to the fluid motion on the sandy court it is all visually appealing. Also the eyes looked unique to me. The soundtrack is good, especially during matches. The OP and ED are excellent though the standout song is the full version of a certain commercial.

Haruka and Kanata about to celebrate

When watching this show goggles are unnecessary.

Remember when I talked having a nickname for the show? That nickname is “That Gay Beach Volleyball Show”. A friend of mine on Twitter, @joeschmo1of3, described the yuri on the show as “being natural“. There were no overreactions, no “but we’re both girls“, no “It’s not like that” or other examples of denying the obvious. It just is. The show treats all the pairs as married couples and one time were described as such. Of course the girls did not hold back. Be it Haruka X Kanata, Claire X Emily, Ai X Mai and Narumi X Ayasa. All of them were gay as can be for their respective partners. Heck, the main drama on the show is yuri related. Heard it is even gayer in the manga. GOOD GOLLYNESS MOLLY! Oh and as for the “But Haruka and Kanata are cousins.” thing…SonoHana, Koufuku Graffiti and other series with lesbian cousin pairings/couples exist. Same can be said for the twins. Basically the yuri is pretty much “in yo face” and it is GLORIOUS.

Overall, Harukana Receive filled that void left by KEIJO!!!!!!!!’s cancellation and then some. The volleyball action is fun, the girls are sexy and wonderful, the presentation is very good and the yuri is down to Earth with no strings attached. It is a perfect blend of sexiness and excitement. It stands proudly alongside KEIJO!!!!!!!! along with other shows I hold dear as one of my favorite anime of all time. Highly recommended to viewers who enjoy sexy girls and lighthearted yuri. Here is hoping for a second season. Not recommended to people who dislike beach/swimsuit episodes because EVERY EPISODE IS A BEACH/SWIMSUIT EPISODE.

About OG-Man

Yuri and Slice of Life are my anime passion.
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48 Responses to 365th G-View: Harukana Receive

  1. “yuri with no strings attacahed” happy to hear that

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Platon says:

    This was one of my three favourite show of this season, other two are still airing. Can´t say which one I liked or like more as each one is good for a very different reasons.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Jack Cactus says:

    What I think is very commendable about this show is how the ecchi never felt unnecessary or gratuitous despite its frequency. The yuri is brimming all over this anime and there’s no denying it, from HaruKana to Eclair to the best couple NaruAya but still, a certain amount of subtly is present. (But hey let’s be honest, there’s no such thing as TOO MUCH YURI)

    God bless the animators for giving us those beautiful camera angles, they do deserve a raise just for that. Speaking of animations, one thing I do like a lot is the lack of slow motion as they are present in crucial moments which helps the intensity. Usually Sports anime with ecchi elements would use slow-mo to emphasize on things like jiggle physics which often times can feel unnecessary so it’s really amazing that HR managed to deliver a delicious dose of fanservice without residing to such cheap tactics.

    The characters are very well done even though Akarin could use more screen time (and that damn jingle is still stuck in my head), Best girl is pretty much obviously Narumi for……various reason, it’s a shame that the likelihood of a 2nd season is nil because I was hoping for a showdown between NaruAya and HaruKana. Even then, I still hope for a NaruAya Receive spin-off, that’d be the greatest gift ever.

    Liked by 3 people

    • OG-Man says:

      It always had purpose.

      The yuri felt natural and it was wonderful.

      Oh definitely. Those mesmerizing angles.

      The show found a perfect balance of hotness and excitement.

      She was formally introduced around the third quarter. Even so she played an important role on the team so I don’t feel she was underused.

      Narumi is awesome and gorgeous.

      You never know. The manga ain’t over yet so it’s all a matter of waiting and hoping.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Harrowing says:

    Seeing that you highlighted on the yuri for this, guess its a must watch for me. Sports with yuri never went wrong for me anyways.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. tbiscut74 says:

    Ive been watchin the dub so I’m at ep 9. Still this show is cute AND sexy. For me Best Girl is Akari so cute and of course the jingle.

    Also I frikkin love that turtle! EEEIIIIGH SO CUTE!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. x says:

    season 2 please, don’t leave us hanging

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Nick says:

    Summer status: SAVED.

    Harukana truly was THE show of the summer. It advertised the hype and fully delivered on it week after week. Gotta love it.

    The yuri was so lovely too. You really summed it up nicely here and shout out to Joe too, he knows his stuff.

    I’ll leave the rest of my thoughts for my review as I’ve got a lot to say about this one.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      As we had predicted. This show would save anime not just in the Summer 2018 season but for years to come. We were right.

      Other Joe nailed it in that tweet of his that I sadly cannot find.

      I’ll drop by as always.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. It makes me sad to hear that Keijo’s manga got cancelled. That series was excellent. I enjoyed this series a lot too. Yeah, the personal issues weren’t overly dramatic. People who want crazy drama in their sport shows should check out the Badminton series.

    Liked by 4 people

  9. FantasyGirlKanna says:

    I’ll definitely miss this!!!! There should be a season 2 for that promised match. Not a movie, an OVA nor a special…but A SEASON 2 LOL 😛 Oh and hopefully more Hype Mama if that happens 😀

    I’m surprised at how high the gayness level in this show is. Then again I should’ve realised that from episode 2 already. And I totally agree with you in regards with the drama. This should be a sports anime but it seems to me that beach volleyball ended up as an excuse to show more sexiness and yuriness and Hype Mama. They just focused more on the sport at the latter part but I have no complaints. Beach volley is pretty much like the regular volley with a very few differences in the rules but that doesn’t mean it’s easier.

    In the end, there’s no Kanata’s mom. I wanted to see her at least once.
    Oh well, this show has given so much already so I’m really happy 😀

    Please let there be a season 2.

    Liked by 3 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Yes. While sequel OVAs and movies are cool we non-Japanese speakers are tortured with longer wait times for the subs.

      Yes. We still need that image of present Hype Mama with her Athlete Mommy body in a bikini.

      Agreed. The drama not being complicated or uber serious made the show easier to enjoy. Sports anime don’t need super serious drama to be good. The nail biting matches had enough drama to make the show compelling.

      1: Kanata’s mom passed away.
      2: Both Kanata’s and Narumi’s moms were briefly shown in the flashback of episode 11.

      Hopefully.

      Liked by 2 people

      • FantasyGirlKanna says:

        I know.
        I mean I just thought they’d show Kanata’s mom a bit more other than one. I thought she was an athlete too but I guess she wasn’t since they didn’t introduce her properly 😛

        Liked by 1 person

  10. Rory says:

    Harukana Receive is excellent – great characters, excellent beach volleyball action and a truckload of yuri.
    Watching Haruka, Kanata and the others play beach volleyball week after week was a lot of fun.

    Liked by 3 people

  11. LuzeriP says:

    I agree with everything you said. One of the best show this season. I’m gonna miss this show every Friday. Also I like how the animator drawings the muscles. It looks realistic. Just see how Haruka and Kanata muscles grow to the end.
    All the girls are lovely but if I have to pick my best girls it’d be Narumi and Kanata. Narumi is my type of girl and her voice wow. And Kanata is the gayest of all.
    So I’m guessing the manga is still ongoing? there’s a chance we’ll get 2nd season and see the ultimate match.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Mauron says:

    The manga is even gayer? I have to check that out. Hopefully it manages to top the “stop talking about your ex-girlfriend” line.

    Excellent series filled with excellent couples that definitely needs a season 2.

    Narumi had a great ringtone in that last episode. Also, that Akari Receive opening was lots of fun.

    Liked by 2 people

  13. ApricotEarthDragon says:

    ahem
    WAKU-WAKU
    WAKU-WAKU
    SHEQUASAR!

    There… that should be stuck in your head for a day or so.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. cirno9fan says:

    Man it was fantastic~

    I can’t give this #1 spot yet. A certain show needs to end before I decide whether its spot is taken by this.

    Anyway! My personal favorite was probably Kanata, but Haruka was right behind her~ I loved this show very much. Having a show be so openly yuri and be nothing but a “beach/swimsuit episode” is such a fantastic idea. Especially when the sport itself was taken so seriously and the matches were breathtaking as any other sports anime. Just, without “superpowers”.

    All the pairings were great, and everything was great! Akari was a fantastic addition to the show, and fit right in before long~

    ONE THING THOUGH

    Did the show just lowkey confirm that males are not human any longer??? That scene with the turtle was very odd….And then the thing with the dog….something was strange…

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      Oh yes. As I have said several times here it was a perfect blend of sexiness and excitement with a large dose of glorious gayness.

      HaruKana were excellent leads.

      Kanata and Akari are great pics for fav girls.

      Nah. Just another example of that “404 Men Not Found” Girls Club series meme. I don’t think grandpa passed away and reincarnated as the turtle. That or your theory that they replaced the men with animals. Honestly it’s not something worth thinking about much.

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Pingback: Review: Harukana Receive Ep 12 – The Game Continues (Final) – Anime Corps

  16. OtakuGamerGirlT says:

    Damn…I’m going to have to watch this one at some point too lol. First Revue, now this; Summer is on a roll for being the best season of the year to get me picking up the most shows after they’ve ended or are near the end of the season. Seems promising though, so I don’t know when I’ll get to it exactly, but I will for sure.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. All in all, this turned out to be a pretty cute girls anime with a balance between sports and fanservice and a nice dash of yuri. I wish it had the animation quality of Hanebado but unlike that show, this was straight up all about sexy girls doing sports things.

    Like

  18. elkat4 says:

    This was arguably one of the best anime of this season. I found that last match intense sense there was no convoluted plot reasons for the main girls to win or lose the match. It could have gone either way and I couldn’t predict the outcome for certain (or rather I had a Schrodinger’s Cat sort theory due to the uncertain things were). It was so intense in a way so many action any aren’t due to me being so trope savvy and cynical to story telling. Don’t get me wrong, I was happy with the match ended, but I wouldn’t have been upset if the match went the other way. That’s good story telling there.

    If you told me there was fanservice in this anime I wouldn’t realize it at first. It was so natural and purposeful it didn’t really stand out that much. I mean the girls are half naked half of the time, how am I suppose to notice a single instance where there bodies are presented as a delicious slabs of meat? That would be like complaining about the fanservice in Free! It’s just something that’s essentially a part of the story. If somebody is so critical to point it out, I suggest that maybe they aren’t enjoying the anime and should find one more suited to their tastes (that’s the wonder of anime, it’s so diverse and there’s something for everyone).

    As for the yuri, it was great, but I feel that goes without saying and I can’t contribute any more insight than what has been presented here.

    Liked by 2 people

    • OG-Man says:

      As I have told many here the show had a perfect blend of sexiness and excitement.

      People who took the time to watch the show in all its glory were able to fully appreciate it.

      Yup. Unrestrained natural gay beach volleyball goodness. Oh yes.

      Liked by 1 person

  19. Joey says:

    Great review. I never knew about keijo!!! Until you linked it to this review. Thanks for that. Both series were awesome, but Harukana Receive was more my speed. Emily was best girl imo. Sneak attacker. Especially with the counter she smacks back in the end episode against her sister.

    Liked by 2 people

  20. yurimylove says:

    very interesting series, especially that beach episode 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Giack31 says:

    This was a really good anime.
    I really like that the drama was always pretty light and not over the top.
    For an anime set on a beach the “usual” fan service (like gravity defying boob giggles and the likes) was actually pretty tame. It was more subtle and really well done.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. K says:

    This review was spot on! This anime was just that awesome and I would absolutely watch another season should it ever get one. One of the best of the season for me.

    I like the girls so much, it’s hard to declare a best one. Seems like a cop-out, but they’re all so charming. Likewise for the pairings.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. DayDream Dog says:

    yep definitely one of my fave watches this summer!! also, dont mind at all that they are cousins and sisters (in regards the the twins) its fictional :/ and was very enjoyable at that XD also, if you say the manga is gayer i might just have to pick that up lol

    Liked by 1 person

  24. cyan says:

    A big thank you for this review.
    You make finding hidden yuri gems easier.
    I loved it, sadly it ended…. but! It’ll forever be part of my favorites, definitely will rewatch again someday.

    This show is such an eye candy

    Like

  25. cyan says:

    A big thank you for this review.
    You make it easier to find hidden yuri gems.

    I loved it, this definitely goes into one of my favorites that I’ll rewatch in the future.

    Liked by 1 person

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