Second Wind: Shows That Deserve Another Life (Part 6)
It’s been a long journey. It’s hard to believe that Bleach is finally coming to an end after 8 long years on Adult Swim. We’re down to the final month before Ichigo rides into the sunset and Goku takes his place on the throne at midnight.
Way back in part three of my series, I stated that I had another show in mind for that article before Sym-Bionic Titan‘s sudden return (rest in peace, by the way) caused me to switch gears. Now that Bleach is ending, it’s time I brought my original plan to the forefront. This show’s plot is often compared to Bleach as they both contain similar themes of fighting spirits and traveling through the world of the dead. That’s right, it’s time to discuss the widely praised and requested Yu Yu Hakusho.
#6: Yu Yu Hakusho
Unlike the other shows in this series of articles, Yu Yu Hakusho doesn’t have any rights issues to worry about. FUNimation has owned the license since day one and they still have it today, so Toonami shouldn’t have any problem picking this up again if they wanted to. If anything, the problem with this series lied more with its broadcast history, and by simply broadcasting this again, Toonami could rectify that problem.
When Yu Yu Hakusho first made its debut, it aired on Adult Swim Action in 2002 with minimal edits. All seemed fine and dandy for the first year, but in actuality, FUNimation wasn’t too happy about it. There’s an old thread on Toon Zone’s archived Toonami forum (it was posted over a decade ago, and it’s hard to find now, so I’ll try my best to recollect the post from memory) which stated that FUNi originally intended to market YYH towards teens rather than adults, so believe it or not, the series was actually filler for Adult Swim’s first action block while they looked for new programming over time. After it was playing for a year, YYH was removed from ASA and placed on Toonami—exactly where FUNimation wanted it—with more edits.
The majority of YYH continued to air on Toonami with heavier editing than normal for an anime series on that block. FUNimation used to be CN’s most lenient partner when it came to editing standards, as their in-house season of DBZ would attest in contrast to any other anime Toonami had aired before that point, so seeing a show from FUNi with heavy edits was a bit of a surprise at that time. (Check out some of these edit lists. It gets pretty ridiculous.)
After moving to Saturday nights, YYH had a prominent home on the block for premieres for nearly a year before Zatch Bell bumped it off. The show went on hiatus, then returned for the final season—at CN’s Friday night death slot at 5AM (Adult Swim hadn’t taken over that night yet). No advertising, no fanfare. Such a lack of a proper sendoff to a popular shonen series is inexcusable.
This is why Toonami needs to get Yu Yu Hakusho back. Now that Toonami is a permanent fixture of Adult Swim, the series needs to air uncut and get a proper full run on Saturday nights where viewers can watch it. No crazy editing, no drastic moving around the network, just air it the way it should have been shown twelve years ago.
Well, I’ve gotten the main shows I want back on Toonami out of the way. Next time, I’ll talk about the shows that didn’t make my list. Watch this space!
[Image credit: cow41087]