The Prince of Tennis Musical is currently running a collaboration with Animate Cafe to celebrate the end of the 3rd Season. The collaboration includes food and drink based on all the different teams that featured in the musical, bonus coasters for each item ordered, and special limited goods only available at the cafe.
For fans of Tenimyu, this is an amazing place to spend some time. You can sit and eat while surrounded by posters and stage images from the shows, and listen to familiar songs from the musicals playing over the speakers. With the place full of other Tenimyu fans, it’s the closest you can get to the Tenimyu experience without actually going to watch the show.
I was lucky enough to be able to go to the cafe on March 1st. Although my experience was a little tinged with sadness because my time slot fell at the time I was supposed to be in Kawasaki watching Tenimyu’s Thank You Festival with Shitenhoji (if I had managed to hit for a ticket), it was the best alternative I could have chosen.
My choice for the main course was the Shakashaka Salad Bun Bun, a cheeseburger and salad set with a name based on the 3rd Season encore song Shakariki Fight Bun Bun. The cheeseburger was made to look like a tennis ball, and the whole thing came set on an image of a tennis racket. It was basic, but as someone who loves Tenimyu and cheeseburgers, the combination was perfect for me.
My dessert was this, Still Hot In My Cake, a cheesecake with whipped cream, cookie, fruit and chocolate, designed to look like the benches the teams hang out on while watching the matches. I don’t know anyone who can resist a cheesecake, and this one was delicious.
I don’t like Japanese tea but I do love Shitenhoji, and so I couldn’t resist buying this Osaka Cha Cha Cha set with green tea, a kokeshi shaped cookie and daifuku. Although I wasn’t able to finish the green tea (I did give it a good try), the cookie tasted good — although I could imagine Osamu’s distress as I bit off the head and then saved the rest for later — and the daifuku was also great.
My second drink of choice was this elegant drink Ore tachi wa Blizzard, Hyotei’s Team Drink, made with ramune soda, ice and silver pearls. Unlike the green tea, I actually did manage to drink all of this drink. Although I don’t know what Hyotei would taste like, I imagine this cold and icy drink is probably quite close.
With ordering four different menu items, I received four coasters. In my quest for Chitose, I chose four coasters from Shitenhoji, but unfortunately he didn’t come to me right away. Even the Chitose mochis were a little disappointed, but happy to see so many of their friends, even Kintarou who they kept a very close eye on to ensure he didn’t run away. We were disappointed, but we knew it wasn’t over.
We were patient, and eventually we had success. But which of the lucky boys above was chosen? You might be surprised. Looking at the options, I thought my best chance for trading was going to be Kenya. In the end, a girl came over to our table with great enthusiasm and asked to trade for my Koharu. She seemed like such a huge fan and just happened to have Chitose for trade, so we both went away happy. The Chitose mochi twins are protecting him with their life.
Part of the limited goods available were random magnets — choose the team, and get a random magnet from that team. I decided on buying two from Shitenhoji, and one from Rikkai. Somehow my luck was so amazing that I managed to get this god-like combination of captains and Zaizen. Did I manage to trade them? Of course I did. My Yukimura was swiftly traded for Akaya, my own Rikkai favourite, and Shiraishi soon followed and was replaced by Chitose. As for Zaizen… well, I’m a good friend and he was sold for 500 yen to the one keeping me company at the cafe.
On the walls, the cafe was displaying stage shots of all of the musicals. It was hard to take pictures of all of them because many of them were above tables where customers were sitting, but I managed to take a few shots. Of course, my first choice had to be this team picture of Shitenhoji taken during their Team Song Osaka Cha Cha Cha — if you hadn’t noticed, I like this team a lot.
My second choice was this trio shot of Tachibana, Osamu and Akutsu taken in the Shitenhoji musical during their song. With Tachibana being my favourite character in Fudomine, and Akutsu as one of my favourite characters overall, I couldn’t resist taking a picture of this image.
My last choice was this powerful shot of Rokaku’s Saeki and Higa’s Kai. Futaba Kaname, who played Saeki, is one of my favourite actors to come out of Tenimyu, but more than that this picture just stood out a lot to me out of those on the wall. With the pose the two are in, and the backgrounds matching their team colours, it just made a really nice shot.
The Musical Prince of Tennis x Animate Collaboration will run until March 17th 2020 in Ikebukuro Tokyo, and Namba Osaka. Have you visited recently? How was the food, and how was your trading luck? Comment and let me know! You can find more information about the collab on the Animate Cafe Website here.