YU-GI-OH! THE OFFICIAL THIRD SEASON

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Having enjoyed explosive popularity in its native Japan and in the West, Yu-Gi-Oh! has had something of a strange coming of age. In this post-postmodern age of meme-speak and Meta inside-out jokes, the series is more of a slew of images ripe for reaction shots. Revisiting the show, then, was bound to be a strange experience.

The collection picks up on the action aboard Seto Kaiba’s airship in situ to Kaiba Corp Island to conclude the Battle City Finals. But they’re interrupted by tiny megalomaniac Noah and Yugi Moto and co. are sucked into a virtual reality world. It might not have anything on the Pegasus arc, but there’s enough tomfoolery, ancient Egyptian guff and card battles to make it an effortless and enjoyable watch with a side order of techno-nightmares.

Nostalgia might have done a bit too dull the senses, but the anime adaption of Kazuki Takahashi’s Shonen Jump serialisation spins a yarn of friendship, love and self-belief and series three is about the point where it all starting to collapse under its own silliness. Though the season three dates back to 2003, it watches like a nineties refugee which in of itself is no bad thing. The original aspect ratio only makes you feel like you’re eating cereal in your jim jams on a Saturday morning.

Under scrutiny, the English dub leaves a lot to be desired, but it’s difficult to spit on voices that, it terms of anime’s snowballing popularity in the west, are nothing short of iconic. Although the price is right, it’s hard to get overly excited at the lack of extras and the insipid menus. The original Japanese track might have just made this a must buy, but sadly online channels are the only avenue for that option. In hindsight, the goofy abridged series might just be the definitive version of the show, but for anyone who grew up on Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters, it’d make a heck of a Christmas gift.

Special Features: None

YU-GI-OH! THE OFFICIAL THIRD SEASON / CERT: 12 / DIRECTOR: HATSUKI TSUJI / SCREENPLAY: VARIOUS / SCREENPLAY: VARIOUS / STARRING: AMY BIRNBAUM, ERIC STUART, DAN GREEN, WAYNE GRAYSON / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW

 


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