When you watch Yawara! A Fashionable Judo Girl! for the first time, don't let its title mislead you. This anime is not about fashion at all. Yawara Inokuma is a senior at Musashiyama High School. This young girl is extraordinary because she is very skilled at judo. I mean, she can really kick butt when it comes to throwing people to the ground.
Jigoro Inokuma, her grandfather, is the one who taught her all she knows. He is also a judo master. He won five victories in a row at the All Japan Judo Championship. Jigoro has been training Yawara ever since she was little. Yawara has morning and evening practice at home, and she does 100 sit-ups and other exercises just to warm up! Jigoro has big dreams for his granddaughter. He wants her to get a gold medal at the Olympics (being certain that judo will become a sport) and then win the National Achievement Award. That's not what Yawara wants. This high school senior wants the life of a normal teenage girl -- fall in love, have a boyfriend, hang out with her friends, wear make-up -- although not in that order. Also, no one, except her family members, knows that she's so good at judo.
So let me tell you about what happens at the beginning of the series. We meet a news reporter named Matsuda. He's out on the street, and screams are heard. Someone's purse has been stolen from them, and the robber is running -- straight into Yawara. In the heat of the moment, she throws the robber and knocks him out. In the meantime, Matsuda's assistant gets all the action on film. When the pictures are developed, the editor-in-chief of the paper orders Matsuda to print the photos, and to use the one which shows Yawara's underwear for the front page. Want to guess what happens next? Does she get totally embarrassed? Does she get so mad that she beats up Matsuda? Does she get "discovered"? Does she get famous? Or does her social life go down the drain (from studying for prelims)? Want to find out more? Then don't miss the show!
By the way, the songs for the opening and ending credits are really good, too.