Dance Dance Danseur Review

Dance Dance Danseur Review

Dance Dance Danseur anime series cover art
Dance Dance Danseur

Ballet Is for Nerds

Dance Dance Danseur (ダンス・ダンス・ダンスール) is a drama anime about ballet. It’s about a high school student who loves ballet but doesn’t think he can do it because it’s not manly. In his mind, he has to follow his father’s footsteps and do martial arts, instead.

But, right from the start of the series, we see that this is a self-imposed limitation. Jumpei’s older sister, mother, and father all support his interest in ballet. They always did. But, it took him all the way until high school to realize that he could do it.

Of course, that’s not to say it was an easy choice. Not only did Jumpei do martial arts, but he was on the school’s soccer team. If he picked ballet, he’d have to give those up. And, what will his friends think of him? Teenagers are mean.

Miyako Godai and Jumpei Murao performing from the anime series Dance Dance Danseur
Miyako Godai and Jumpei Murao performing

As one of Jumpei’s friends puts it, ballet is for girls. However, I’d argue that’s exactly why being a male ballet dancer is manly. Jumpei gets to spend his days putting his hands on cute girls wearing skin-tight outfits. That sounds way better than chasing a ball around with the boys.

Anyway, should you watch this anime if you aren’t into ballet? Yes. I’m not into ballet and I’m telling you it’s good. In fact, it might even be better because I’m not into ballet. That seems to be a trend for me when it comes to anime about niche subjects.

If I watch an anime about something I’m really into, I tend to be more critical of it and end up not enjoying myself as much. But, if I watch an anime about something I have no real interest in, I have way more fun. It helps me focus on characters and drama.

Godai School Love Triangle

The three main characters of the series are Jumpei Murao, Miyako Godai, and Luou Mori. Miyako’s mother is the instructor at the Godai ballet school. And, she brings Jumpei there after finding out he’s interested in ballet. Luou is Miyako’s cousin who lives with her.

Let’s get Jumpei’s name out of the way before going forward. You may have seen it spelled Junpei. Both are correct. But, I’m going with Jumpei because that’s how it’s spelled in the anime. He literally wears a shirt with his name on it.

Now, Jumpei has a crush on Miyako. I mean, who wouldn’t? Miyako’s a cutie. But, there’s an issue, and that’s Luou. Luou also has a crush on Miyako, despite the two of them being cousins. And, throughout the series, we see Miyako going back and forth between seeming to like Jumpei and Luou.

Miyako on top of Jumpei from the anime series Dance Dance Danseur
Miyako on top of Jumpei

But, isn’t the fact that Miyako and Luou are related a problem? Technically, sure. But, they’re not as closely related as two normal cousins are. They’re actually only half-cousins. Instead of sharing a pair of grandparents, they only share a single grandparent. So, are they a bit too close for comfort? Yes, but it could be worse.

Alright, let’s get into some spoilers. Even though Miyako seems to change who she’s more interested in episode by episode, it was never up for debate, to me. She always seemed to lean more toward Luou in my eyes.

However, much to my surprise, she and Jumpei became an item. They even kissed. So, at that point, I figured the debate was over. Jumpei won!

Well, until Episode 10 when Jumpei dumps her so she can be with Luou. That was a massive L on his part. Someone who does that doesn’t deserve Miyako.

Natsuki-chan Is Better, Anyway

Well, Jumpei didn’t end up with Miyako. But, he has another option, Natuski Oikawa. Natsuki is the daughter of Ayako Oikawa, the owner of a different ballet school. The Oikawa school is much larger and more prestigious than the Godai school.

Despite being a “rival” school, though, Miyako, Jumpei, and Luou all attend the Oikawa school for at least a bit. And, at the end of the series, Jumpei decides to join Oikawa full-time (you know, after breaking up with Miyako).

Now, back to Natsuki. As the daughter of Ayako, she’s the prodigy of the school. I believe she’s two years younger than everyone else in her class. And yet, she’s the most skilled of the female dancers at the school. She’s also one of the first to recognize Jumpei’s raw talent. Though, she doesn’t like his personality, at first.

Natsuki Oikawa smiling from the anime series Dance Dance Danseur
Natsuki Oikawa smiling

When Natsuki was introduced, it was pretty clear that she and Jumpei had a special connection. I still thought Jumpei would end up with Miyako. But, Natsuki was the first partner he completely connected with. The two of them were in sync way more than he ever was with Miyako.

Unfortunately, the season ends before things go very far with Jumpei and Natsuki. Hopefully, Dance Dance Danseur will get a second season because I want to see more of them. I know that Natsuki’s a bit young (I think she’s 13 and Jumpei is 15). But, a two-year age gap isn’t an issue if the series continues for a few more years.

Miyako did a good job of getting Jumpei to dive into ballet. Now, it’s up to Natsuki to bring out the best in him. That seems like it will be fun to watch if what we saw of them dancing together is any indication.

Final Thoughts

Dance Dance Danseur is a 7/10. It could have been an 8. But, I thought it fell off a bit at the end when everything went down between Jumpei and Miyako. The whole resolution with Miyako ending up with Luou just didn’t feel like it was done very well.

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