Friday, October 30, 2009

An Homage: Yu Yu Hakusho

Middle school, probably the most torturous, while also being the most fun times I've ever experienced in my life thus far. There were so many things that symbolized those three years for me, but I think nothing represented them better than Cartoon Network's after school block Toonami.

Toonami was it for me when it came to my television programming. Gundam Wing, Dragonball Z, Rurouni Kenshin, there was nothing else like it, but of course the greatest show to come on during this time was Yu Yu Hakusho.

Back in those carefree middle school days, my life consisted of three things: comic books, video games, and anime. If I had to pick a favorite anime in that time, Yu Yu Hakusho would be it. The story of 14-year-old delinquent Yusuke Urameshi, dying and coming back to life as Spirit Detective for Spirit World, battling rogue demon criminals. That's really all you needed to know to launch headfirst into the show.

Yu Yu Hakusho was the prime example of addictive anime. The story was deep, complex, and emotional. It made you laugh, feel all warm and fuzzy inside, while also making you wanna cheer for the heroes. Kuwabara with his dumb comments, Hiei with his snarky observations, Kurama and his rose whip, and Yusuke who is just simply one of the finer mixes of a lover and a fighter into one package; they were all such wonderful characters, and their relationships amongst one another were so hilarious.

This was, I have to admit it, my big obsession for those two or three years in middle school. I owned the Yu Yu Hakusho action figures, the Game Boy Advance video game, had a Yu Yu Hakusho cut-out pinned to the inside of my closet, and recorded practically half of the episodes on video. That's about as obsessed as one could get.

While the nostalgia of the series is one of the main reasons as to why I remember this show so fondly, I mustn't forget that the show still is as remarkable to me today as it was back then. Now that I'm older and have more money, I own every episode of the show on DVD, and it doesn't disappoint. It is still a hard-hitting anime that is full of countless epic battles and some genuinely funny humor. This show definitely takes the cake for my favorite anime of all-time; one of those anime classics that should be rediscovered time-and-time again.

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