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~On Poltergeist: A YuYu Hakusho article

This months SGD cover story is YuYu Hakusho, by Yoshihiro Togashu. (Who is also married to Naoko Takeuchi, famed creator of the Sailor Moon series.) Bear in mind, that I've never seen the anime series, so I have no idea how that is. But if it's even anywhere NEAR the manga, then it's nothing short of Terrific.

I first got into this manga by my best friend, who was reading a translated online manga version (and was nice enough to give me the address) Now mind you, I've heard of YYH before this. Well, the anime atleast. I'd seen advertisements of it in a couple 'Wizard' mags. Needless to say, it didn't look too appealing. See, I'm very judgemental when it comes to anime/manga. Know that saying, 'don't judge a book by it's cover'? Well, in this case I do. And if you're anything like me, you're more lured in by the cover art on a manga or an anime box, than it's discription on the back. Seriously, this could be one of the best stories, but if the animation is bad, I won't even give it a second glance. 'Course, this can also be misleading as well. The cover can be beautiful, but the inside art terrible.

Really.

It's happened.

What first turned me off, (as I've said) was the anime cover art. It looked as if it had come straight from the 80's. (No..there's nothing wrong with that) Y'know, that faded look that told you it was one of those 'older' anime. But it wasn't so much as the art as it was the general cover THEME itself. It looked.....well, kinda busy/boring to me. Just alot of people jumbled up on the cover, running from some unknown enemy. Who were these people? And why should I care about them? Most ppl tend to lean towards things that are easily explicable through brief showings. (i.e. Movie covers, book covers) When there are more than 3 characters, you usually tend to dismiss it, not purposely, but just sort of automatically. YuYu Hakusho had over 5 ppl on the cover (the one I saw atleast) , and a normal passer-by really can't tell the main character, (even though he/she is usually situated in the center in situations such as this) But it makes you think that they have an individual episode per character, which slows the plot down in INDRODUCING these newbies. Which is why, unless you know about particular anime like this BEFORE hand, you usually steer clear of them and their slow charactor and plot developement.

The colors were drab. Blues, Greens, Browns, Tans, Yellows....with a splash of pink. Being an artist myself, I tend to be overly critical of professional work that I think could have been better...I mean, c'mon! you want consumers to buy this! Jazz it up! Make it catch my eye!! I still haven't seen the anime, but the manga....the art was simply wonderful. It blew me away the first time I saw it. A crisp, clear, clean look. Nothing drab or boring about this! And the facial expressions....a creative mixture between realistic and mangistic (if I may) was just simply stunning. Not many people can pull this off successfully. The story itself was fantastic, with colorful charactors that aren't all what they at first appear to be. For example, the main charactor, Urameshi Yusuke, at first appears only to be a 14 yr old dilenquant who couldn't care less about school. His actions however, prove otherwise. We get a glimpse of this right away, when he literally sacrafices his life to save a child. He's really a kind, caring, overall GOOD person. I won't give away the entire plot, but I loved him instantly. (Though later his rival {and in my opinion best friend} Kuwabara became my ultimate fav!!!! ^.~)

Probably however, the most contraversial charactors in this series are the famous Kurama (or as I like to call him, the fox demon youko) and Hiei. The objects of many hilarious/dramatic doujinshi and fanfiction, these two guys are a yaoi fan's dream come true. (I especially love the Doujinshis!!!!) Some feature Kurama as a lovable feminine wifey type, (lol) Or in his fox form, a sex crazed lunitic (in a funny sort of way) while others feature him as a psycopath who's obsessed with having Hiei for himself. (all seem to portray Hiei as the indominate one, while Kurama is always the one in control) I haven't any idea where these idea's came from..perhaps later on in the manga they begin to take on these charactoristics or something....but I haven't gotten there yet. Anyways, I HIGHLY recommend this manga! If you like laughter, romance...or even Gundam Wing (It slightly reminded me of that for some reason....) Then you'll LOVE YuYu Hakusho. So go ahead! What are you waiting for?? Click on the link below to read the manga for yourself!!!!

[check out the doujis too!!!]

~AnthyR

YYH Manga in English