Published by Halfey Halphstein,
I started my 2016 anime with The Prince of Stride. I can say the only reason I picked it to be the first is... because it was the first Winter 2016 Anime to be available. Other than that it features Hanazawa-san as the main character (it's been a while since I last saw her holding the main role in anime). However that didn't really make me happy (I'll explain about this in a bit).
Hanazawa-san is like the only girl in this show. She's supposed to be the main character but this anime is not focused on her.
This anime is quite funny and the 'stride' sport is intense but that didn't really get me interested. Hanazawa-san, despite being the main role in this show was overwhelmed by the bishounen-designed males. I think this is the problem with sports anime, when they decided to adopt a bishounen, model-like design instead of a more gar, sporty design you often see in football (soccer) anime. To explain this better let's take a look at Kuroko's Basketball. I love basketball, it's my no.1 sport that I actually play. However I couldn't finish watching the season 2 of Kuroko's Basketball because I think the bishounen characters didin't mix well with the sporty setting. It feels as if I was looking at a gay show. I prefer Takehiko Inoue's Slamdunk. I guess that's what happens when you see a show of reverse-harem genre, though it this point I can't see the 'harem' part yet other than Hanazawa-san being surrounded by male-only club members.
This is how the sport 'stride' looks like, in case you're wondering.
So this 'stride' thing happened to be some sort of parkour or free running but it's done in a team and they implemented a relay racing system in it. I'm not sure why they need to rename it though (not that I care anyway) but I personally OK if they just used parkour. It won't make much difference if they just used the name parkour instead of giving it a new name. Besides by using a real-life name of a sport audience could relate more to the show instead of seeing it as a fantasy thing that is only possible in anime/manga. If I were to compare how much 'fantasy' is this from the real life counterpart, I can say almost none. At least a show like Air Gear did differ so much from actual roller skating.
At this point I already watched the episode 2 of this show. I don't have much hope for it. In this year I'm going to 'measure' the 'watchability' of an anime by monitoring how much I take screenshots from each episode. In the second episode of this show I found no scene worth taking a screenshot. I think that's important to represent a visual part of a show if you want to do episodic reviews but if you can't show a worthy screenshot from each episode then that would be a problem. That said I think this anime is quite close to being dropped that even Hanazawa-san's presence couldn't save it though if I were to ignore the bishounen males then I think it's quite watchable.