Aired: Oct 2017 – Dec 2017
Also known as: TWOCAR, Two Car: Racing Sidecar, つうかあ
Summary: Two Car follows high schoolers Miyata Yuri and Meguro Megumi as they battle six other rival pairs in the sport of motorcycle sidecar racing.
(Source: MAL News)
Review: Definitely not Silver Link’s finest work, even though this anime-original series aired in the Fall 2017 anime season in order to celebrate the studio’s 10th anniversary. Frankly, I have trouble even figuring out whom the show’s target audience is supposed to be.
Silver Link has been behind several series that could be considered yuri (or shoujo-ai, depending on your personal definition) and Two Car initially seemed to be following this path considering how most of the character cast are females. However, the fact that the main characters, Yuri and Megumi, crush hard on their male coach (who is a manchild and who remains off-screen for the majority of the series) is rather off-putting for yuri fans. The viewers also find out later on that another team (the one with twins) also fought over a guy.
While yuri fans are likely disappointed with Yuri’s and Megumi’s (as well as the other team’s) orientation and fixation on males, most of the other teams have plenty of (sexual and/or romantic) tension to go around. I’d even say that the twins have some subtext going on. The same goes for Yuri and Megumi, but it’s just difficult to even watch them interact with one another since they blow up at each other over the most trivial and inane things. The viewer is constantly reminded that the characters on the screen are high school students since they behave like immature children who don’t know how to make compromises.
Two Car isn’t particularly good at portraying heterosexual romance, either (well, a lot of romance series are abysmal at this, admittedly). Their coach is initially characterized by flashbacks since he’s already left when the series starts and perhaps there’s supposed to be a sense of progression in said flashbacks. However, it just seems like they both started liking him because he is good at racing. He is talented in racing, yes, but he’s just a flat and boring character overall. Why care about him? Why care about Yuri and Megumi? While I’m at it, most of the adults in this series are simply irresponsible and, in turn, unlikeable.
I suppose the people who will be interested in this series, then, are people who are into sports. I do appreciate that the series attempts to tackle a unique sport known as sidecar racing where one person drives while his or her partner uses his or her own body to perform acrobatic maneuvers and act as the counterbalance on the uneven vehicle. It’s basically an insane sport considering how fast these girls are driving and it’s certainly intense, but it’s also a bit unpopular since no one seemed to have known what it was before this show started airing. Perhaps I just live in the wrong continent since there’s a huge motocross event at the Isle of Man (between Great Britain and Ireland) every year. At any rate, the way the girls alternate taking the dangers of the sport seriously and brushing it off proved to be frustrating for me. I guess the girls sometimes think they’re invincible since they’re still young.
The final issue I had with the series was that it comes across as being overly formulaic.
All Nearly all of the characters are introduced in the first episode as they say some sort of cliché line and then the series follows this predictable pattern where the pairings who aren’t getting along get two episodes to solve their little spat. It’s similar to what happened in the first cour of Sakura Quest, actually. It simply wasn’t executed all that well here, either.
Now, what does Two Car do right?
Well, for starters, the OST is pretty amazing. To be more clear, I think the OP was a nice listen and it helped me feel more motivated to watch the show. The ED was also easy to listen to and was rather calming. But the instrumentals in particular was rather exciting to listen to as these girls opt to do these crazy stunts and races.
I think most of the racers are rather unlikeable, unfortunately, but one particular pairing involving a overwhelmed “prince” and a tempestuous “princess” is actually very entertaining. They’re what causes the series to be enjoyable due to their hilarious antics. With that being said, I would have to say my favorite character is Makita Ai, the announcer who alternates between being a stoic girl with a quiet voice and a dramatic commentator who know how to bring the hype with her explosive and powerful voice. The gap moe is simply irresistible!
I have to admit, the final race is simply amazing. It’s dynamic, it’s exciting. The results don’t seem like an asspull, either, since the foundation for what happens in the race has been present from the very beginning and throughout the entire series. But is the payoff worth 12 episodes of pain?
Whenever you watch anime, or do anything, really, you have to consider opportunity cost. You should be asking yourself if there is a better way to pass the time.
And to be honest, I would say that there are definitely better things for you to do than to watch Two Car. There are better anime series for you to watch, at any rate. It’s not the worst series out there, admittedly, but I would say that the negatives outweigh the positives in terms of scope and prove to be difficult to overlook. A disappointing look for Silver Link, really.