"Skate 1 - Easy as Pirozhki!! The Grand Prix Final of Tears" (第1滑走: なんのピロシキ!! 涙のグランプリファイナル, Dai ichi Kassō: Nan no Piroshiki!! Namida no Guran Puri Fainaru) is the first episode of Yuri!!! on Ice.
The episode starts at the Sochi Grand Prix, where legendary Russian ice skater Victor Nikiforov has just placed first. Japanese skater Yuuri Katsuki, on the other hand, places last in the entire competition, following a mental breakdown over his dog's death. While Yuuri is calling his mother about his loss, young Russian junior skater Yuri Plisetsky berates him and tells him to retire. Yuuri returns home to Hasetsu after five years where he catches up with his family and childhood friends. After a video of Yuuri perfectly replicating Victor's current free skate, Stay Close To Me, is secretly released on social media, Victor decides to travel to Hasetsu to become Yuuri's coach.
Victor Nikiforov has won his fifth consecutive Grand Prix Final, in spite of the belief that he is coming close to retiring. Meanwhile, Yuuri Katsuki, having made it to the Grand Prix for the first time, has placed last. As he is reading the news about his performance, Celestino Cialdini, Yuuri's coach, tells him not to do so.Yuuri then leaves to go the restroom, where he calls his mother, unaware that he is being followed by Yuri Plisetsky. Upon hearing that there has been a public viewing of his performance, he becomes embarrassed, but quickly becomes sad again. He hangs up the phone, and begins sobbing in the stall. However, a few seconds later, Yuri Plisetsky kicks his door forcefully, which scares Yuuri. He opens the door and is confronted by Yuri, who tells him that he does not want to compete with another person named Yuri when he enters the senior division next season, and that he should just retire. He then leaves angrily.
Yuuri is then shown leaving the venue with Celestino. Suddenly, somebody calls out for Yuuri -- that somebody being Morooka Hisashi, an announcer. Morooka angrily tells Yuuri that it's too early for him to retire and that he mustn't give up. Yuuri responds by saying that he has not said anything about retiring. Morooka continues interrogating Yuuri about his plans for the future, but Yuuri's focus is elsewhere, and he does not respond. He hears his name again, and turns around to see who said it; however, it turns out to be Victor talking to the Russian Yuri about his performance, even though Yuri states that he does not care.
As Yuuri continues to watch the two, Victor turns around and sees Yuuri. He asks Yuuri if he wanted to take a commemorative photo with him; however, instead of accepting, Yuuri turns around and heads for the exit, ignoring Celestino calling his name. He thinks about how the whole experience was humiliating, and about how he will never be able to compete at the same level as Victor.
In March of the next year (three months after the Sochi Grand Prix), Yuuri returns to his hometown, Hasetsu, with uncertainties as to where he will go next in his skating career. He is greeted by Minako Okukawa, who immediately berates him on his presentation, comparing him to Victor. She then forces him to shake hands with several strangers, after which they finally exit the station.
The focus briefly shifts to a recap of Victor's season; while Yuuri has done poorly in the remaining competitions of his season, Victor, on the other hand, has continued to score victory after victory.
Yuri arrives at home, to the delight of his mother. Minako asks Hiroko if she has lost weight before turning to Yuuri and confronting him about something she had been suspecting as soon as the saw him at the station -- his weight gain. She forces him to strip down, and sure enough, Yuuri has gained a considerable amount of weight. While Yuuri's parents mention how he has always gained weight easily, Minako is less forgiving, berating him about how he weighs too much.
Yuuri then visits a small shrine that has been set up in the house for his dog, Vicchan. He apologizes for not being able to see Vicchan one last time. Mari Katsuki then enters the room and asks about Yuuri's plans for the future, to which Yuuri replies that he needs more time to think about it.
Yuuri tells Yuuko that there is something that he's been meaning to show her. He takes to the rink, and begins what is immediately recognizable as Victor's Stay Close to Me performance. Upon completing it, Yuuko is emotional and says that Yuuri's rendition is a "perfect copy" of Victor's. Moments later, Yuuko's three daughters, Axel, Lutz, and Loop Nishigori, show themselves, as well as Takeshi Nishigori. They encourage Yuuri by saying that they will always support him.
Later, Yuuri is in his room, thinking about how he must compete with Victor again someday, when he gets a message from Takeshi. To Yuuri's disbelief, the triplets have recorded and posted a video of his rendition of Victor's performance online. It has become viral and has been viewed by numerous other skaters, including, in the end, Victor himself.
The next morning, Yuuri goes outside to shovel snow when he is tackled by Makkachin, Victor's pet poodle. At first, he wonders if Vicchan is somehow still alive, but his speculations are quickly put to rest when Yuuri's father, Toshiya, tells Yuuri that the dog has arrived with "a really good-looking foreign guest". Yuuri, already with an idea as to who this guest might be, rushes to the hot springs. He is greeted, to his utter shock, by Victor, who informs Yuuri that he will become his coach and lead him to victory in the Grand Prix Final.
Characters in Order of Appearance Edit
- During the interview with Victor following his victory, his name is written "Victor Niliforv", instead of "Victor Nikiforov".
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