If you had asked me last year what I’d think about watching a golf anime, I probably would have laughed before launching into a whole list of reasons why I probably wouldn’t watch it, starting with pure boredom for the sport to outright dislike for its large use of land. Now we’re hitting summer and BIRDIE WING is probably one of my more anticipated sequels for the coming year. There are few other new shows this past season to get me this excited for a continuation.
There are a couple of key factors that make BIRDIE so irresistible: the characters, particularly the lead, and the overall attitude towards golf. Eve is a force of nature that you can’t help but follow with your eyes and heart. Her straightforward take on life bursts from each swing of her club. Her free flowing hair style and attire invite you in as a participant rather than as just some bystander. If someone dressed as casually as she can stand on the green, why not us? She doesn’t care about the opinions of others, or their expectations. What she knows is smashing the ball into the hole as quickly as possible and the unending necessity of cash. Using her skills to pull in money for her family of illegal immigrants puts a whole new spin on golf—this isn’t a game to her, but a job she happens to love.
In addition to the power of Eve’s personality, there’s also her style of golf which is accentuated in the anime with flashy move names and streaks of color. She treats each of her swings as a gun shot. She chooses the necessary ammunition, winds back with just the right amount of force, and powers through to her goal. We get titles like “Blue Bullet,” “Red Bullet,” and even “Rainbow Bullet.” These flashy yet easily understandable colors take the role of what would otherwise be different clubs and strokes. Her style of golf perfectly suits her main use for it, which is high stakes gambling. With ridiculous opponents like Vipère and Rose, who wouldn’t want to see the results of those matches?
Ultimately, we do move away from the grittier side of gambling to something more anime familiar—high school and sports competitions. This would typically deter plenty of viewers who avoid sports anime, but rest assured that BIRDIE refuses to concede to the norm even here. The new setting and goals really just serve as excuses for Eve to gather a whole new cast of admirers. Too bad for them, her heart is reserved for only two things: golf and Aoi, the only girl to truly challenge her. The ridiculous challenges continue, and each opponent brings with them a hilarious gimmick akin to Saki or Keijo!!!!!!!!
The season ended right at the start of the school tournament, but in just the right place to leave us salivating for more. More Eve with her sadistic grin, more powering through tree limbs and white sand, more flummoxed Aoi. I’ll be there for it all.
Rating: 2 dango
- 0 dango – average and forgettable.
- 1 dango – very good in its category.
- 2 dango – excellent show that is worth a try.
- 3 dango – exceptional show one must watch.