Over the course of the last decade or so, the boom of anime in the sports genre has proven one thing. No, it isn’t the fact that sport can be slightly homoerotic (although that’s still a valid point), but that the competition in a plot line doesn’t automatically guarantee our protagonist being the very best. Like, there is no hard and fast rule that the person we were meant to be rooting for comes out on top, and that’s genuinely interesting. It’s why fans of the now-popular soccer manga, Blue Lock, aren’t pinning their hopes on frontrunner Yoichi Isagi becoming the best.
Fans do question whether he will fulfill his goal of becoming the Best Striker, and the quick answer is yes. Eventually, I can see Yoichi becoming the best in the game, solely because that’s been the whole point with sports anime of its kind. You root for the underdog and see them blow past their rivals and prove everyone wrong. It’s the entire hype of seeing your favorite character finally achieve their dreams.
But that doesn’t always hold true. Take Yuri!! On Ice, for example. It was a super popular sports anime and, by the end of it, Yuuri Katsuki does not take the gold medal home, despite being the protagonist of the entire show. And while being the best figure skater was a secondary point to everything else going on, it was still kind of shocking that s sports anime didn’t give its main character the most prestigious win. It definitely broke down fans expectations in a good way. But is that something we can expect from Blue Lock?
Personally, I don’t think so. Blue Lock, for the most part, is shaping up to be pretty much like every other Shonen-influenced sports anime out there, and that means the protagonist will definitely get his dues. Yoichi might be unassuming for now, but his stats and patterns are exactly what we’re going to break down in today’s segment of Character Analysis!
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Yoichi Isagi: Going From Plucky Protagonist To Main Character Material
So, Yoichi actually starts off pretty generic. He’s carefree, with a cheery disposition and really innocent when it comes to his behavior, much to the irritation of those around him. Because of how genuinely nice he is, a lot of the people in the field don’t think he has the guts to put aside his friendliness and really get down into the rivalry of it all.
And in a way, they were correct. Sports, as wholesome as some anime portray them as, isn’t about making friends. It’s about competition, dedication and trying to be better than anyone else in the game. And the sooner a promising young individual realizes that, the faster he can reach his goals. And that’s the lesson Yoichi comes to realize.
This is where Blue Lock really deviates from other anime out there. Because Yoichi doesn’t use the power of friendship to bring a team together. Instead, the manga focuses on the strength of the individual and how they change while going through the infamous Blue Lock Training Program.
Eventually, Yoichi grew more assertive and more passionate about honing his craft instead of trying to be friends with everyone. It’s a genuine deviation from what we’ve normally seen in Shonen, where the protagonist gives his all to those around him. Over here, it’s more of a focus on the characters’ journey.
Why Yoichi Is Going To Shoot Past Everyone As The Best Striker:
So, I said that Yoichi has grown pretty strong throughout the course of the manga, but his stats are still fairly weaker than of those around him. And age is a factor, because people like Rin Itoshi are leaps and bounds ahead of him and happen to be in the same age bracket.
Logically, it feels like he won’t be able to catch up but, guys, it’s a manga. A little suspension of belief goes a very long way. And hence, I fully believe that no matter where we started at, Yoichi is well on his way to becoming the best Striker in the game.
That’s just how a story such as Blue Lock would pace out. Now, this isn’t set in stone. But seeing how much he’s already progressed, I think it’s pretty fair to say it’s just getting better!