Yuri On Ice – On Love and Life

In the last month and a half you’ve probably seen a whole bunch of blog posts coming out as part of ‘OWLS’. OWLS (Otaku Warriors for Liberty & Self Respect) is a group of bloggers who promote the existence of all peoples, regardless of ethnicity, sexuality, religion, gender or disability. Each month OWLS chooses a theme to write posts for that reflect our beliefs and help promote equality. This month, all the OWLS bloggers are writing about ‘Yuri on Ice’ with the theme ‘flight’. If you are interesting in joining OWLS click here. 

Yuri on Ice “Flight” Blog Tour

An individual takes flight when there is a goal, a dream, or an ambition that he or she wants to achieve. However, for this blog tour, we are going to look at “flight” in different lenses: the underdog’s dream, the possibilities that Yuri on Ice allows viewers to think about, and also the dangers of greed and ignorance that can influence one’s dream.

Life and Love have been discussed for thousands of years, in art, poetry, music and any other type of media you can think of.  Everybody wants to find love, and everybody wants to live their life to the fullest.  But the world isn’t so simple, life in itself can be a rollercoaster, taking you to new highs and the deepest of lows  This was also discussed (briefly) by Victor in one of the last episodes – how he found life and love after coaching Yuri. In my blog piece, I want to discuss how ‘Yuri On Ice’ helps characters take ‘flight’ through experiencing life and love in their skating routines. Make sure to check out  Rai’s blog piece from Wednesday, and the upcoming blog on Monday by Pink Chan! Check out the full schedule over here.

Eros & Agape

When Victor gives Yuri and Yurio their individual routines, they were surprised when they were given opposite ones. Yuri, the quiet sweet boy with no romantic experience was given Eros, erotic love. The hot headed Yurio was given innocent love – Agape. By connecting to these two opposite forms of love, Yuri and Yurio were able to find different sides to themselves, sides that ultimately help them achieve their goals.

Both of them struggle with their assignments, but it was the young Russian hothead that breaks through it first. Yurio looks back at his relationship with his grandfather, and the unconditional love and support given to him throughout his life. He uses his emotions to transform himself, he is no longer the erratic, spark plug of the ice skating world. In both his routines, he becomes a prima ballerina telling a story of tenderness, and sweet kind love. Through the lens of agape, Yurio also learns to connect to other people, notably Otabek, the stoic skater from Kazakstan. He begins to open himself up, and even, we as audience, see a new side to Yurio. He truly care about the people around him, he may be a bit harsh, but he truly wants his friends to be happy.  Even with Victor, his anger towards Victor wasn’t from a selfish desire for Victor to teach him, but concern over Victor ‘throwing’ away his talents.

Yuri on Ice Agape gif.gif

Yuri on Ice Eros gif.gif

Yuri on the other hand is the sweet country boy, with big dreams. His self-confidence isn’t particularly high, and he can be a little bit meek. But the ‘Eros’ routine, which, lets all be honest, is about Victor, gives him a new dimension. He portrays himself (in line with the music’s story) as the most beautiful woman in town, not as the handsome playboy, he is the woman who seduces all who lay eyes on her. Victor helps Yuri rediscover his passion for skating and to overcome the devastating pressure he puts onto himself. Every time that Yuri does his route, it is for Victor. Every movement he connects to his love for Victor, how he desires Victor to only look at him, to only love him. This desire is what pushes Yuri, it’s not that he didn’t want to become great before, but now he has a newfound purpose to become the best. To show the naysayers and everyone that not only has Yuri been reforged into a great skater, but that Victor belongs to him

Through their routines, the characters are constantly interacting with these ideas of love. They use these ideas as a lens to reflect to on their life experiences, to appreciate the people they have around them, and to gain renewed confidence. The characters of Yurio and Yuri take ‘flight’. ‘Love’ and ‘Life’ has pushed them to new heights, they’ve become stronger individuals, and ultimately, it’s helped them achieve.

When It Doesn’t Work Out


Georgi Popovich’s routine first appears during the China Cup. With Victor no longer skating, he sees himself as the new top skater in Russia, and he certainly has the potential to be. His entire program is dedicated to his ex-girlfriend, Anya. In the short program he depicts himself as an evil witch, casting a spell on Anya, in the free program he is the prince that breaks the spell. His girlfriend had left him for another man, and his routine was designed to try and win her back. But that’s where he went wrong. His entire routine, and entire process was dependent on another person, on their reactions and applause. Where Yuri and Yurio’s routines were inspired by another person, ultimately their routines were focused on discovering new aspects about themselves.


Georgi’s first short program goes well, and he is placed second in the competition. He uses the program, in a way, as a catharsis. The break up could have been shocking and obviously not mutual, he has a form to vent his anger and pain. But it’s the second program where he looks to Anya for approval, he fails. She’s moved on, and is not impressed, a thumbs down, sends him into a spin. He looses a medal place, and is distraught. His skating should have been for one person – himself, but he latched too tightly on a love that was already gone, and he was desperate to get it back.

Ultimately Yuri and Yurio succeed in their routines because they view the ideals of love and life holistically, and learn from them. Where Georgi’s routine is filled with bitterness and regret, Yuri and Yurio ascend to new levels, rather than focusing on the past, they constantly seek to improve themselves. ‘Yuri on Ice’ shows that it doesn’t matter the gender, race, ability nor sexuality of an individual, you just need to find someone that will support and love you. An individual that guides you through love and life, but gives you the chance to gain independence and learn for yourself. That support can be an inspirational driving force, showing new sides to yourself, and ultimately helps you take ‘flight’.

45 thoughts on “Yuri On Ice – On Love and Life

  1. Awesome post Steph, I love how you used the character’s individual routines to explain their journeys over the course of the series! It definitely gave me a new perspective on the characters and their wonderful routines!

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  2. Seriously! Everyone is coming up with such awesome takes on YOI I’m loving it so much ❤ Steph the way you discussed love for this post was on point. I hadn't really thought of it before but you are 100% right Georgi's program really is a perfect example of the problem with a dependent type of love. You can't grow from something like that because it is so draining and upsetting. You can really see how it takes it's toll on him as he continues to skate and break down on the ice. Where as Yuri and Yurio's perspective programs continue to grow as the show goes on. They're love being inspired and therefore having the ability spark their own abilities instead of draining them. Gah! I love this post!

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  3. I loved reading this post. You did a great job demonstrating the differences between George and Yuri and Yurio. Even if you’re not participating in a competition, I think you would do well to sit down and consider why you’re working so hard. Who is the source of your motivation? Is it a healthy goal? Dreams are one thing, but it’s easy to overlook the small things. Hopefully George can move on and find someone better. Lovely post!

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  4. Great post! I loved reading the way you relate the skating to the character’s individual development. The contrast between Georgi and the two Yuris was particularly brilliant.

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  5. This post is extremely well-written! :3 I like how you related their routines to their life and goals. You are right about Georgi- he should have relied on himself and not his ex-girlfriend. It is a shame because I liked Georgi. His first routine reminded me of the evil wizard from Swan Lake. I am sure they did that on purpose, considering Swan Lake is a Russian ballet. I would have liked to have seen more influences from Russian ballets, but Georgi dropped out D:

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  6. Great post, Steph. And a very interesting analysis of the two Yuris’ routines in contrast to Georgi’s routine’s. I like how you differentiated the reasons for their routines, how Georgi’s routine is based in regret and bitterness. I liked both his routines, but I must agree with you about when Georgi’s ex gave him a thumbs down and he lost it. He depended too much on another person and that backfired. Good job. Cheers!

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      1. Oh my gosh. There will be a season 2. Kubo-sensei is already working on it, if what she says on twitter and interviews are to be believed. It’s just a matter of when. Hopefully as soon as possible.

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  7. Sorry for my late commenting on this. I loved your post Steph dear I would have done these themes of live and love. I liked how you related the back draw experiences some of the skaters had and how they recovered with the inspiration, support they had to overcome. Was such a sweet little piece 😀

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  8. Great post about this, Happy 💖💖
    I super agree with all you said. I love how much growth the boys did 😻
    Now crossing my fingers a season 2 comes so I can once again be taken away to ice hell 🙏


  9. Inspiration vs dependency is a very accurate depiction on Georgi’s dilemma, and I’m glad to finally have seen someone put it into words. This was great, and if we ever see the return of Russia’s drama queen, then I’d love to see him learn his own lesson fly off from there!


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