Nana Maru San Batsu: Thrilling Finale – Series Review

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Nana Maru San Batsu: A captivating quiz bowl anime

There’s a particular sort of frustration in watching shows like Nana Maru San Batsu. The series itself is excellent and thoroughly enjoyable, but you can’t help but feel a tinge of disappointment knowing that it is unlikely to have a second season or a significant following. However, shows like these serve a different purpose – they act as advertisements for the source material and are a testament to its quality.

A Parallel with Kabukibu!

One cannot overlook the parallels between Nana Maru San Batsu and Kabukibu!. They are both positive, coming-of-age stories loosely based on the sports genre. Despite relatively modest budgets, these series shine due to their strong content and tasteful production work. Surprisingly, they often go unnoticed by Western audiences and are unlikely to be licensed or translated into English, adding to their obscurity. Nevertheless, their quality remains undeniable.

Do I regret falling in love with shows like Nana Maru San Batsu? Absolutely not. The experience is worthwhile in its own right. This terrific series skillfully handles the subject matter of competitive quiz bowl, delivering excitement and detailed portrayals of the competitions. Moreover, it shines as a coming-of-age tale for its main character, Shiki, capturing the essence of discovering one’s passion and the subsequent journey of exploration.

An Exquisite Finale

The finale of Nana Maru San Batsu encapsulates the show’s excellence. It begins with a cliffhanger question that the three main characters – Shiki, Mikuriya, and Akira – answer in ways that reflect their distinct personalities. Mikuriya uses Zeller’s congruence to determine the correct day of the week, while Shiki relies on his vast pool of knowledge and Akira resorts to a clever cheat, leveraging the ambiguity of a Kanji character.

Akira’s unpredictable nature adds a layer of fascination to the show. Although he enjoys messing with people, his love for bending the rules does not extend to outright contradictions. Unable to tolerate his own cheat code, Akira quits the game after deducting three points from Mikuriya to help Shiki. The intricacies of his character make him a captivating puzzle.

The Final Showdown

As Akira withdraws from the game, leaving five remaining players, the tension continues to rise. The third-place runner, Shibata, deducts a point from Shiki after a correct answer, generating a sense of gratitude from Shiki. However, Shibata decides to punt the next question, paving the way for the final showdown between the two fated rivals – Mikuriya and Shiki. The last question encompasses a Christian theme and draws the competition to its climax.

It is fascinating to witness the various approaches to success in quiz bowl. Shiki, with his vast knowledge and emotional interpretation, represents a beautifully curious mind. The elegance and intricate reasoning behind his answer of Via Dolorosa make it a shame that it is incorrect. However, only Mikuriya gives the correct answer, showcasing his unique perspective. Shiki’s approach may be favored romantically, but each player’s method is equally valid.

A Bittersweet Conclusion

While we may never see Shiki’s full transformation into a quiz bowl master or Kurosu’s dream of becoming a professional kabuki director, the final episode acts as a satisfying closer. Gakuto emerges as the winner of the Asagaoka event, proving his dominance. Shiki shares a heartfelt moment with Mikuriya, reveling in his newfound passion and the presence of a worthy rival. As for Akira, the tears he sheds may reflect his own frustration at feeling a connection to something he rejects.

Although this type of anime experience may feel unsatisfying in some ways, it serves as a testament to the creative pulse of the medium. While popular manga often inspire anime adaptations due to their financial viability, it is the lesser-known shows like Nana Maru San Batsu that embody artistic integrity and take risks. These series are at risk of fading into obscurity as anime becomes more thematically homogeneous and risk-averse. Nonetheless, their brilliance deserves recognition and appreciation as they bring unique stories to life.


Nana Maru San Batsu stands as a shining example of a captivating quiz bowl anime. Its exceptional storytelling, attention to detail, and insightful portrayal of characters make it a series worth experiencing. The parallel with Kabukibu! highlights the underrated gems within the anime industry that may go unnoticed by the mainstream audience. This bittersweet finale leaves viewers with a sense of longing for more shows that defy convention and offer a creative pulse that keeps the medium alive.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Is Nana Maru San Batsu based on a popular manga?

No, Nana Maru San Batsu is not based on a widely popular manga. Its adaptation serves as a platform to bring the lesser-known source material to light.

2. Why do some lesser-known anime receive less attention from Western audiences?

Western audiences may have limited exposure to lesser-known anime due to licensing and translation limitations. This, coupled with the industry’s increasing preference for safer, more commercially viable themes, contributes to the lack of exposure for unique series.

3. Are there any plans for a second season of Nana Maru San Batsu?

As of now, there are no plans for a second season of Nana Maru San Batsu. However, fans can continue to enjoy the original source material.

4. How does Nana Maru San Batsu compare to other sports anime?

Nana Maru San Batsu differentiates itself by focusing on the intellectual and competitive nature of quiz bowl. Its attention to detail and captivating storytelling make it a standout within the genre.

5. Are there other anime series with similar themes that viewers might enjoy?

For viewers interested in series with intellectual competitions and coming-of-age tales, anime like Chihayafuru and Hikaru no Go provide similar experiences worth exploring.