I'm not sure exactly why so many see GX as the weakest of the Yu-Gi-Oh anime series, as I thoroughly enjoyed it, and continue to do so no matter how many times I watch it. GX has a strong cast of characters with terrific voice actors, excellent back-ground music, and an interesting setting and storyline. I'll admit that the storyline is a bit shakey at times and contains gaps, but that is also true of the other Yu-Gi-Oh series. In my opinion, GX contains far more comprehensive character development than the other Yu-Gi-Oh series. It has been critised for focusing too much on the main
protagonist, Judai, but I also think this is true of the other Yu-Gi-Oh series, especially 5D's. I recommend watching GX for people who are out to enjoy anime. If the viewer is overly critical, and watches GX for the sake of finding flaws, they will find plenty. But if you watch GX with the objective of being entertained, I don't think you will be disappointed. GX is a fast-paced series with an energetic protagonist and wonderful supporting cast, and if you like to look deeply into a series, you will find plenty of absolutely fascinating stuff lurking in GX. Watch this series with a wide open mind.
After watching the whole series in just two weeks or so, I will tell you how I felt about this series. I watched the orignal Japanese version, not the English dubbed version (although I've watched some on TV).
Yu-Gi-Oh! GX is a sequel of the original Yu-Gi-Oh! series as most would know. The game of Duel Monsters has gotten so popular that there are pro leagues as well as specialized schools to mainly train and teach students to become great duelists. It's an interesting setting and did intrigue me.
The story follows after a young boy named Yuki Judai, who just starts to attend an elite Duel
Monsters school called, "Duel Academia" The school is divided in three different classes, "Obelisk Blue", "Ra Yellow" and "Osiris Red" (the names should sound familiar for those who watched the original series). It is basically dividing students into their skill levels, Osiris Red being the lowest class, Ra Yellow in the middle and the Obelisk Blue, consisting of the school's best duelists.
The series starts off with a lighter tone, just following Judai and his life in school as he makes new friends. But as the story progresses, it does get deeper and more complex. I felt that there were quite a few story elements that seemed forced and didn't make sense, but it was watchable overall. Much like the original series, there's heavy emphasis on friendship. One thing that does get a little annoying is that duelists read their card effects every time they play it and it kind of gets tiresome, but I guess they can't help it since there will always be people who aren't familiar with the cards and their effects.
I wasn't super impressed with most of OP and ED songs, but soundtracks were quite good, although I would have liked a little more variety of music during duels. It's like when you hear a certain music starts to play, you know that our hero's pulling off an awesome combo to finish the duel!
Art wise, I felt that GX got a slight down grade from the original series. Not a big difference, but I never thought that GX had better animation or art quality. Not the worst, but not too impressive on most parts. However, I never expected it to be amazing since it is a 180 episode series afterall.
There are quite a bit of characters in GX and I felt that there were perhaps a little too many. Character developments are there, as it would be crazy to have a 180 episode series without character growths. Some character developments being more natural and subtle than others. The series inserts new characters here and there to keep it interesting, but it felt a bit crowded later on.
I mainly watched this because I play the card game myself. It will be much more enjoyable if you play the game. It does gets kind of repetitive, but that could be because I was having a marathon (almost). The TV series is very different from the manga, so give it a read! I personally like the overall feel of the manga more, because the manga has more mature feel to it.
Basically, this series is worth a watch for someone who:
- plays, or is interested in the card game
- wants to kill some time
- is looking for something to watch with his/her kid
In conclusion, Yu-Gi-Oh! GX was a decent series, but it was never at the level of the original Yu-Gi-Oh! series.
It's best to note that while the Yu-Gi-Oh! GX anime is not the worst anime in existence, it is far from the best. This series puts a couple of blemishes on the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise; in fact, when compared with the manga, it earns the same reaction you'll find from avid Tsukihime fans: "What anime?"
The premise of a dueling academy makes a lot of sense when you consider the fact that Yu-Gi-Oh! is about a children's card game. While the importance of a children's card game seems exaggerated in the viewers' eyes, you have to remember that in this animeverse, it -isn't-. Duel Monsters is the
most popular--and clearly the most influential--sport of the world. Plus, when you realize the Academia still has the required graduation classes (though you won't see them too much on-screen), you realize that the school is a typical high school--just one with a very specialized "Ivy Leage" program.
Still, while the premise doesn't have flaws, the way it was carried out does. The first half of season one made GX seem like a slice-of-life anime, which wouldn't be so much of a problem if the plot was at least consistent rather than having these separated one-shots. Then when GX actually started having substantial plots, it seemed like another series taking itself too seriously. A white hole in space sending proxies to bring about destruction? A deranged hermaphrodite demon seeking her lover? A force of darkness wishing to unify all existence in nothingness? Sorry NAS, not buying it. What probably made these plots worse was that they were arranged in a "What enemy will I face this school year?" fashion.
The art was average. It didn't thrill me, but it didn't disgust me either. No more to say on that. Now as for music, that was actually GX's best asset. The OPs and EDs weren't the best, but the OST soundtracks were. They did their job of accenting the situations quite smoothly. If an upbeat song came on, the situation was happy or comical. If a slow and sad song came on, the situation was depressing or dark. And if that one song that raised your spirits came on, you knew the protagonist of the duel was making his comeback.
NAS dropped the ball with its characters. Too many characters introduced at a time with too little development reserved for each one. Judai, the main character, was a Gary Stu that didn't get a background story until season three. The background wasn't even good either, turning out to be a contrived DM reincarnation rip-off with pathetically shallow "I need to grow up" development in season four that made him nothing more than an ass. And the other protagonists only got their little development in season one, and were shafted in season three with the appearance of the Academia champions.
Still, I found myself enjoying the series while watching it. Much of the bashing GX gets is in hindsight, when the fans start looking back and realize the flaws they overlooked when they first watched it. In the end, the GX anime turned out to be run by a group of people who had no idea what direction they wanted to take the show in; they would rather insert any random and unnecessary bit of occult history and symbolism if it made viewers think they were actually putting any thought into the series. (And let me tell you, GX is riddled with occult stuff if you know how and where to find it.)
I suggest that rather than watching this anime you read Kazuki Takahashi and Naoyuki Kageyama's manga adaptation.
Well, what's to say about Yu-Gi-Oh! GX? Well nothing much really. Basically they just added a new theme to Yu-Gi-Oh! that doesn't seem so good. When I first thought of the sequal of the Yu-Gi-Oh! series, I thought that this one had to be good, but yet I was wrong. On the other hand there are a few good things about this show. Many of the cards that Yu-Gi-Oh! players loved appear in the show more often and shows a different approach toward Duel Monsters. Usually we thought that the theme of the Cards were Egyptian Monsters and what not, but in GX they change
it to modern day Monster themes. Many of the Characters have pretty well rounded themes, and it's nice to see what they'll draw next.
Basically they began where the Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters was near its ending. While Yuugi and friends were facing off the dangerous Yami Bakura in one last game, this Duel Academy was getting praise from around the world. Duel Academy not just teaches kids to become better duelists, but also better Buisness men. Then appears Jaden Yuki, a kid that has one thing on his mind, becoming the next "King Of Games". He's not the only one though. Once he joins Duel Academy he faces several opponents, some stronger then most. But does Jaden have what it takes to become "King Of Games"?
Some advice to you about this series, don't watch the 4Kids TV version! If you know how bad 4Kids TV ruins many other good animes (ex: One Peice, Tokyo Mew Mew, etc), then you best know how bad it turns out. Try going on Youtube or some anime fourm where they show the anime in Japanese. You'll see that the characters are more serious then the ones 4Kids turned them into. Besides, we all know that Japanese anime is better then dubbed American versions, right? So take my advice and be more open minded about animes. Once again so it's refreshed in your heads.....4KIDS TV IS BAD!!! Thank you.
The tightrope between absurdity and existentialism. The setting is not what it appears to be.
The series has remained fascinating to me for many years, despite its status as a tie-in to a trading card game. The expectations going in are low, but the show dazzled me as a younger man for its surprising depth of character writing and the journey of the characters. GX is absurd, but also unafraid to go to dark places. It's about growing up, the meaning of games, the pain of adolescence, and the Jungian shadow.
Judai is at first an annoying main character. Blithe, casually arrogant, undisciplined. But there is also
an innocence to him that is in equal measure endearing and disturbing. There is something "off" about him, and as we learn more of his past in the later seasons, it all starts to make sense. His character is a microcosm for the series as a whole - boyish playfulness and youthful exuberance masking inner darkness, shadows bubbling madly beneath the surface. Minute by minute, the youthful ideals are stripped away and the child is thrust into adulthood.
The side characters suffer from the problem most shonen side characters do - lack of plot important battles and victories. But what they lack in those they make up for with strong character arcs. Manjoume is a great twist on the usual "shonen rival" archetype, Shou is a similarly unique take on the "insecure shy best friend" cliche, Ryo and the "aloof big brother". All of them deconstruct the usual templates. The character writing is pound for pound superior to Yugioh Duel Monsters, and that is a FACT.
The technical aspects of the show are fine. The animation is generally good, with peaks and valleys seen in all long running series. Japanese soundtrack is decent, Sad Duel is a great track. The openings and endings are very good, except for the first OP and ED, which are booty in my opinion. 99% is both melancholy and hopeful, Precious Time Glory Days is a rousing anthem.
The dub is hilarious, and cheesy enough to capture the more absurd elements of the show. It surpasses cringe and leaps headlong into meme territory. It fails utterly at the serious moments though, and the sub is overall the superior product by leaps and bounds.
This series stands apart from Yugioh Duel Monsters, there is a serious argument to be made for it being better. Those who call it a knockoff are ignorant and fail (or refuse to) see the series' merits. The depth is there - choose to see it! I will defend this series any day any time.
Yu☆Gi☆Oh!: Duel Monsters GX is oftenly known as the weakest Yu☆Gi☆Oh! series aside from Zexal, which in my honest opinion is under rating it a lot. The show may have it's flaws but it's actually an outstanding experience for anyone who looks for long running shows with great characters, funny interactions between them and entertaining story since it begins until it ends.
The show features a lot of one shot episodes and characters thrown in the "filler" category, which is the first point in trashtalking the show. When the story begins it takes a bit long to get into the first arc so the first 30
or so episodes are the ones that introduce you to the show's premise and characters that stay for the longest, which I found alright since they take all of it's time to be properly introduced in a completely non-boring way. Aside from them, there are a bunch of one shot characters that stand in the bad side for silly yet entertaining reasons that never try to hard to be serious but still is pretty fun to watch. It's an original anime so the fillers will still be considered originals and skipping them will just take out from the experience the enjoyment they give. Even the one shot characters are likeable with many ways they have to express themselves, so no one feels the same as the last one as it goes on. They even come back in a later second season episode which actually give them the credit they deserve and it's a nice touch from the staff to not forget about them.
Speaking of characters, during the show each one of the main bunch have their own proper development and mini arcs too, so they are not there just to support the main character (as it was in the original Duel Monsters series) but to acomplish their own goals and make a better experience out of it and in the end you'll just can't help but feel happy for how everything went for them (and miss them like I do...).
The second main criticism the series get is regarding the first two main arcs of the story. While it's certainly true that the plot gets impactful and more interesting the last two arcs where "shit hits the fan". The first half tries something completely different as it goes in a light-hearted (with serious moments) slice of life perspective (in a school where people learn to play card games to do something with their lives related to card games, as silly as it sounds it's pretty cool). It takes it's time to build up the world it presents and success because coming back to the point of the characters and their interactions it will always feel fresh and fun to watch.
I consider a mistake to watch GX skipping the first half just because the second half is more serious, if it's done like that anyone who starts from season 3 onwards won't feel empathy for the characters, which are the show's strongest point in the experience of the story, so from the get go if you don't like them this animation is not for you and most importantly you will for sure miss a lot of crazy shit during seaons 1 and 2 that'll make you think the writers were in drugs during production.
The actual plot though it's not perfect since at some point it foreshadows a lot of stuff that is never explained or brought back again later on, leaving a lot to think about without any answers, but looking for the silliest or serious outcomes will actually feel good.
Production values-wise is the most solid of all the Yu-Gi-Oh! franchise, the designs for characters, monsters, environment and even duel disks are pretty interesting and the animation lacks mistakes in it (QUALITY). The soundtrack is also likeable since every background music fits perfectly the moment they play, the voice acting and dialogues in the japanese version is also excellent since every character feels natural with their voice actors representing them.
Regarding the duels, well, it's Yu-Gi-Oh! so it's a standard so liking and understanding the card game is the first step to like or dislike GX.
Opening and Ending songs are also good. In my opinion openings 3 and ending 4 are the best.
Overall it really is an enjoyable experience and it's a shame that we will probably never see something GX related again (;_;)
So if you like Yu-Gi-Oh! and card games animeys to begin with give GX a shot, it might feel like a hit or miss but if it hits you, you'll feel an eternal void inside of you the moment you see the last minutes of the show and try to move on by watching something else (the cycle of anime).
I have a little confession: Yu-Gi-Oh: Duel Monsters GX wasn't that bad, BUT wasn't that good.
Okay, let's begin:
10 years have passed after we broke up from our beloved Yugi, Atem and their friends, here comes a new story about Judai, a dueling dreamer, who is going to a duel academy to learn how to be the best dueler all over the world. Without to notice, Judai meets Yugi on his way to school, when Yugi gives him a luck card: The Winged Kuriboh (Judai calls him at the beginning 'Partner' and after that, the real name). Since then, Judai comes to school and the
Until here everything is good and pretty. But the 2 first seasons were unnecessary to me. Why? Because they were such as fillers and boring. The improvement is seen in the 3rd season, when there are good episodes and good new characters (Johan of course ^__^). One more surprising thing is the 4th season, that actually is the main portion, during the previous seasons are the appetizers.
But what's the matter? Also on the original Yu-Gi-Oh there was an improvement, But it was since 2nd season. There is a different.
Art was very great and very good, such as any anime I love. Quality? Excellent (Although the dub version has a bad quality LOL)
Sound? Very good. I am also buzzing the soundtrack any single moment(The dub version sounds like a drag-show). The japanese voices very great and the songs also.
Characters? Very great. Judai is so cute, and when he grew up, he was very valued (That's why am I calling him:'Pet-Yugi' XD). Sho sounds twetty, but he was cute. Manjoume? My favourite. Asuka? Very good character. Chronos? was annoying a little. But still, There were many good characters to me. Any character that was a villain at the beginning, has changed to good (Remember Kaiba, Pegasus and Malik?), but in any anime is like that, no?
Enjoyment? I told when I reviewed on the story, but I can tell that I stayed because of many great characters, such as Manjoume, Edo, Fubuki and Ryo (My faves+Johan and Jim from 3rd season and up) and that's why I love the 3rd and the 4th seasons of the anime.
And overall? If you look for bishies (And shipping xD) and you are a fan of the Yu-Gi-Oh series, Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters is the perfect anime for you!
[*NOTE: I related for the original version, not for the foolish dub version]
After the Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters anime was finished, Konami commissioned a sequel to be made. Already this would prove a bit difficult for the guys at Studio Gallop as the Manga had ended, so they would literally have to pull stuff right out of their asses for this show.
Honestly, it paid off magnificently, as to this day I consider Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Monsters GX (GX standing for Generation NeXt) to be the best anime in this franchise, if not straight up the best thing to come out of it. Why is that? Well, let’s find out:
1st Arc: Seven Stars Arc (Episodes 1-52):
One thing I loved about
this show is that it deliberately starts off slow. No hints of an ongoing narrative are shown until a few episodes in, which really helps to set the tone for the rest of the show: The characters come first, the story is simply a vehicle to develop these characters.
That said; these early episodes are a bit hit or miss. Nothing truly terrible, mind you, but sometimes it feels as if they were seeking for excuses to promote new Cards. That said, the actual main plot itself is perfectly fine, even if it just… kinda ends without much fanfare now that I think about it.
That said, the actual end of the Arc (The Graduation Duel between Judai and Kaiser) was fantastic, and a hell of a way to end it all.
As for the characters, we have a lot to unpack so let’s get through them.
Firstly is the main character, Yuki Judai, and I just adore this guy. He’s adorkable, confident yet also isn’t a complete idiot. His studies may suck, but that’s because he’s just lazy, if he actually wasn’t he’d be a brilliant student. I’ll talk more about him later as his growth is pretty much the main focus of the show.
His supporting cast is also pretty good. Tenjoin Asuka serves as an effective female lead, even if she loses a few too many times. Marafuji Sho is definitely a different kind of best friend character from Jonouchi, but in a good way. He’s meek and insecure, which leads him to cling onto Judai, and while his growth in confidence does end up eventually causing a rift between the two, it’s never quite enough to completely shatter their bond. Manjoume Jun is an arrogant dumbass to be sure, but damn if I don’t love him for what he is. Much of the same can be said about Tenjoin Fubuki, just replace the arrogant thing with a penchant for theatrics. Finally there’s Cronos de Medici, a character that by all means should be a one and done, yet had some of the best development in the whole show.
Now, GX had a couple of rivals, however the one I consider to be the main one is Marafuji “Kaiser” Ryo. He’s probably one of the more dynamic characters in this show. For now, all I’ll say is that I do like his initial personality. Somewhat arrogant, yet not as much as previous and later rivals and has a general air of nobility around him.
As for the villains in this arc, I honestly didn’t care much for them. None of them were awful or anything, but none left that big an impression on me. The only one to note is Darkness, who’ll become important later.
The rest are D-List characters so no use in talking about them.
2nd Arc: Society of Light Arc (Episodes 53-104):
This arc is really more of the same when you get down to it. I don’t hate it (In fact, I quite like this arc) but it just goes on for way longer than it needed to.
In my review of the original Duel Monsters series, I mentioned how the Doma arc served as a bit of a blueprint for this arc. I less so meant that in terms of plot progression but moreso in terms of themes. Characters being turned to the dark side because of manipulations by the big bad? That sounds kinda familiar, doesn’t it?
Judai’s development begins this season. He suffers a very nasty win at the beginning that completely crushes him both physically and mentally. Most of his arc here revolves around moving on from said trauma (Which is done in the first half of the arc) and eventually admitting that he was so caught up in his own problems that he didn’t even realize that his friends were also in trouble.
Similarly, Kaiser suffers some radical changes this season. Similarly to Judai, his arc begins as a result of a loss; however it has moreso to do with the fact that he’s been a perfect Duelist for so long that he doesn’t know how to deal with loss. This all eventually devolves into him slowly losing his mind before becoming an Ax-Crazy psychopath. Think Mai’s arc during the Doma arc, just on a larger scale.
As far as the characters that are introduced here, only a few matter. The first is Edo Phoenix, Judai’s sorta rival for this season. He’s definitely the one who’s the most different yet similar to Judai, to the point both run similar Decks (By the way, try mixing those two up in real life. It makes for a rather effective combination). His own arc is mostly set around his past and how it has haunted him even after so many years. I do like the guy, though I wish he had slightly more screen time after this arc.
There’s also Tyrano Kenzan, a character the show tries to treat as important, but he really isn’t in the grand scheme of things. I don’t hate him or anything; however he’s just not that interesting a character to me.
Finally there’s the villains, and boy are these an upgrade over the ones in the last Season. Firstly there’s DD (I really hope that’s just a stage name), who’s just a bastard in every sense of the word and I was happy when Edo killed him. Then there’s the Saiou siblings, Mizuchi and Takuma. Mizuchi is nothing special, basically just a retread of Ishizu from DM. But boy is Saiou Takuma a great villain. He’s basically Dartz on steroids, as in, everything about him is exaggerated. I love him, and I’m at least 90% sure that he’s at least part of the reason Koyasu Takehito got the role of DIO in Jojo, given that he got to say ZA WARUDO way before that show came out.
Overall, a pretty good, arc, though not perfect.
3rd Arc: Dimension World Arc (Episodes 105-156):
Hands down, the best and darkest arc in the whole show. One of the things GX is infamous of is that even though the first 100 or so episodes were rather lighthearted, the last 80 or so are some of the darkest in the franchise. From this point on, the show effectively decides to deconstruct its premise, with it being reconstructed in the final arc. I’m a sucker for reconstructions, so you cans see why I would love this show so much.
The pacing is once again rather slow, but this time I actually think it works to the show’s benefit. This arc has a lot going on at once, and the slow pacing allows for everything the arc wants to focus on to get some spotlight. At the same time, it allows it to create a dark and uncomfortable atmosphere, which fits the new setting.
Judai’s development really kicks in this arc. At first, he tries to keep his happy-go-lucky attitude he had for the rest of the show, but his selfishness and the stress all finally catch up to him, leaving him as the perfect puppet for the show’s antagonists. By the end of this arc, he’s but a shell of his former self.
Similarly, Kaiser gets some massive development. He’s softened out since the last arc, and while this can come kinda out of nowhere, given that we learn later on that he’s dying, it could be interpreted as him just trying to get some closure. I kinda wish that he had actually died instead of just being relegated to a wheelchair, but oh well.
As far as characters introduced, there are three that are parts of the good guys. The first is Johan Andersen, and if you’ve been around this community for long enough, people can’t make up their minds about him. I think he’s okay as he does have a very believable friendship with Judai, but I will admit he’s my least favorite of the three new characters. Jim Crocodile Cook is one of those; he’s so delightfully charming and quircky that you can’t help but love him, yet he’s also competent and knows when to get serious. However it was Austin O’Brien who stole the show for me. He’s a badass, has a very interesting backstory, and an honest to god character arc. Needless to say, I was more than happy that he came back the following arc.
However the best thing about this arc is its villains. The first of any major importance, Satou Kouji, does have some rather backwards-ass logic, but he does have a massive impact on Judai, to the point that despite appearing in only two episodes, Judai answers a question he asked him almost 40 episodes after that. Then there’s Professor Cobra, who’s effectively Leo Akaba from Arc-V, except he doesn’t suck. This man is wrapped in his own delusions, ones that don’t even allow him to see the reality in front of him, which all ultimately leaves to his own admittedly tragic death.
However it’s the other two that stand out. Amon Garam is definitely one of the most unique antagonists in the franchise. He has a God Complex, sure, but it’s not as if he can’t feel empathy, and ultimately the sacrifices he had to make to achieve his status do haunt him, which definitely makes him an interesting character to talk about. But let’s face it, the one that really matters is Yubel. This… whatever the hell Yubel is, is messed up beyond belief, but given all of the crap that happened in Yubel’s past and how Yubel’s own love for Judai ended up causing Yubel’s own fall into insanity, it’s no wonder that it was Yubel of all people that was the one villain to survive this arc (Oh, and the reason I have only used Yubel’s name instead of using pronouns is because I have no idea what Yubel’s gender is meant to be given that Yubel is a hermaphrodite).
Overall, the best arc in the show bar none, if not one of the best in the whole franchise.
Final Arc: Darkness Arc (Episodes 157-180):
This is where the show’s reconstruction begins. Since most of the initial supporting cast was sidelined last season, the majority of this arc is focused on tying up their character arcs. It’s all very well done, and thankfully everyone gets at least two episodes to tie everything up.
The main plot is, ironically, a bit of a subplot when you stop and think about it. The arc is the shortest in the whole show, sure, but it’s kinda funny when you stop and realize that most of the main plot just happens in the background. Thankfully it’s well done, so I don’t have much to complain about when it comes to this.
What does deserve mention, however, is Judai. The guy is almost unrecognizable from the last two arcs, to the point he got a massive redesign just for these last few episodes. Most of his cheeriness is gone, often replaced with him sulking or just being rather cold to everyone around him. He’s still a nice guy, but you can tell that most of the times, the smiles he does show are no longer even genuine. However by the end, it’s clear that this was all a result of stress having caught up to him, and he just can’t enjoy what he loves doing anymore. In fact, the fact that the final duel had no stakes whatsoever was what allowed him to regain most of his cheeriness, though he does know he has more responsibilities from now on.
As for the final villain, Darkness, he’s perfectly fine. He’s basically Don Thousand from ZeXal, except he doesn’t completely suck. He’s a bit generic, sure, but he’s a competent enough antagonist and his goal, while extreme, does have a bit of a point to it.
Overall, a really good final arc and a fitting end to the show.
It’s… middle of the road. To be fair, it does mostly stay on model, but it never reaches any moment that looks particularly amazing. The show just kinda settles into being just… average looking.
By contrast the soundtrack is fantastic. Once again, classical instruments are often used; however I noticed a larger use of the electric guitar this time around, which I really liked. As for the Openings, while I didn’t care much for “Kaisei Jōshō Harerūya”, but it’s not awful either. I also didn’t care much for “99%”, but again, it isn’t awful. That said, I loved the third opening “Teardrop” and I have yet to meet a single person who doesn’t love “Precious Time, Glory Days”, myself included. I also quite liked the Endings, with the exception of the third one “Taiyou”. My absolute favorite, though, was the second one “WAKE UP YOUR HEART”.
Funnily enough, this is probably the only show in the franchise that averted having an amateur cast. Yeah, more than a few of the voice actors don’t have much experience, however there’s also a large amount of big names here, and most of the main antagonists have big name voice actors. As far as said big names go, we have talents like Yamaguchi Kappei, Kobayashi Sanae, Inoue Kazuhiko, Gouda Hozumi and even the late great Tsuru Hiromi as Yubel, pulling out her best performance in her whole career.
However there are two Seiyuus in particular that stand out. The first is Maeda Takeshi as Kaiser, who had a superb performance as him and I’m confused as to why he hasn’t had more roles yet. However the absolute best performance in this show (And indeed, this was his big break and debut) was KENN as Judai himself. He captured all parts of Judai’s character, and I’m happy he still comes back to this role from time to time.
So yeah, I loved this show. Is it perfect? Hell no! However I did really enjoy it, and the hatred it’s gotten never seizes to confuse me. It’s a wild ride to say the least.
Also, the dub for GX is the worst thing ever and you should avoid it.
Perhaps the only case of anime where the dub actually did a better job than the original, and we're talking 4kids here.
Set approximately 10 years after the original ended, we meet Jaden, a student who enrolls in the famous Duel Academy, that trains people to becomes pros. Since it's a yugioh anime that's not Arc V (or 5ds) you can already guess that there isn't much in terms of character development, backstory etc etc. Jaden is nothing short of a hyperactive cheerful clown who has the occasional kinda-badass moments, and then we have the background cast of Alexis, Bastian, Chazz, Cyrus and a few others,
though you will only remember Chazz since he's in almost as many episodes as Jaden (they're rivals... kindof... Usually it's Chazz making a fool of himself and then dueling Jaden for insertstreetfighterlogichere). The villains will settle for nothing less than world domination (minus the 3rd arc villain who... Lets not spoil it, she is pretty unique though), and will stop at nothing to destroy their opponents... That is to say minus the rules of a duel that more ofter than not they have no reason to play. But this is yugioh, all conflict is solved with card games.
Now for the duels themselves, definitely an improvement from the original. Pretty much everyone uses fusions, or otherwise will end up using fusions. The only exceptions are the occasional one-episode villain using a lockdown burn deck, and the final bosses of each arc. The duels are from start to finish intents, starting the long tradition of the yugioh anime (&game) of changing who has the upper hand per turn. Obviously this manages to keeps the tensions up and give you quite a spectacle. And this is where the highlight of the dub comes in, for once 4Kids puns&insults are not AS horrible as you would expect. Surely there are a lot of retarded lines along the way, but certain catchprases like "Game On" will definitely make an impression to you. Another thing that 4kids did right was replace the (mediocre at best) original soundtrack with various techno themes that REALLY get you going (seriously, kudos for that). The voice acting isn't half bad either, with various characters other than Jaden managing to make an impression, especially when it comes to villains. Satorius (the second season's villain) especially had some amazing voice acting done for his part, which is also the reason the second season (Light of Destruction) is bound to be your favourite of the four.
Honestly there is not much to say about GX, I suggest watching the dub as far as it goes, for the awesome music (and kinda barable puns) if not for nothing else, and then continuing to the final season with the original, since 4kids decided not to dub it due to overly diabolical themes (despite the series actually going well in terms of viewers). Game on!
Please note before you read this, the scores i gave it were all 10's. I'll explain in detail shortly
Yu-Gi-Oh!, as we all know it , is a super successful card game show, and downright franchise. Most of the content that spill's out of its universe, is made purely, for cash. The original series people will argue, is the same. And they are right, but here's how I look at it. So fucking what? As a child, me and the kids my age were absorbed into this show and its card game. I was about maybe around 9 when GX came out, and as a kid
I could not see the huge flaws that make up this show. We loved it so much, all these franchises, Yu-Gi-Oh!, Pokemon. Hell, maybe even some Digimon. These things, make up what I liked to do as a kid with friends and alone. And at the age of 16, I am secure enough to say I fucking love this show. Not that i would watch it or play the card game, Hell no I'm no fucking loser, but i love the memories and I still have a tremendous respect for this show.
It's all horrible, or it's all good. Does not matter. The story is shit. We have no development and all their is for characters are Archtypes. But that's OK. The dissection is redundant at this point! It was more about the cards then the actual show. But still this show had our tiny brains absorbed into this spikey haired, over the top, repetitive show! But at least it was consistent! If i had to pick most show's that game out now, or this, THIS in a fucking heartbeat. No not Angel Beats, Shoo weeaboo.
We basically got our dumb protagonist Jayden, who only losses when it suits the plot accordingly, our evil pedophile DR who wants to take him down, A stuck up rival who has a Ojama complex, a chick who does not want to show us her titties, a pussy for a best friend, Fat albert if he was a white Koala, and a strain of side characters that have more meaning than some.
This show sounds like shit! But when we were kid's we could let that all go and take it simply for what it was. Any review criticizing this show for its countless flaws is redundant. The only thing that matters to rate this show, No, this universe, is how it affected YOU. Fuck character and art and sound (Get your game on) YOU are what this show is about. Now take all your cards from you closet, or if you sold them remember the times, and just take a gander at yourself. This to people who grew up with any franchise, That IS YOU. Take it or leave it.
So since I already reviewed the manga counterpart and have been rewatching this for the past couple of months, I might as well put down my thoughts on it.
With the Yu-Gi-Oh! anime ending, but the card game and hype still going strong, it was no surprise, that the franchise would go into it's next round. This resulted in a series, that further expands on the crazy world of competitive card games by creating Yu-Gi-Oh! GX, where an entire academy, where kids learn how to play the game and educate themselves to be pros, got build. If you are reading this and think it sounds stupid,
you might as well turn around, cause YGO! is past the point of making normies understand, why their concept is great.
The series follows Jaden Yuki a happy-go-lucky duelist, who just wants to have fun, never gives up and is damn good at card games. He gets accepted at Duel Academy, but has to stick around the drop-out Slifer Red dormies, cause he mopped the floor with a teacher on his entry exam and since early 21st century media always had a problem with authority figures, the teacher is a dick about it and sticks him with the dropouts regardless of his appearent skill. The rest is alll about his life at the academy; studying, dueling, hanging out with his friends and dealing with evil forces, that want to conquer the world and could easily do so by force, but will fairly agree to settle things by playing a card game instead.
With the introduction out of the way, let's get into the analysis whether the show is good or bad.
The plot divides into four seasons, which all amount to a total of 180 episodes.
The first season is divided into two arcs. The first one starts episodically, but slowly starts snowballing into more significant arcs like Jaden and his best friend Syrus about to get thrown out of the academy, but having a chance to prevent it through a card game (have I mentioned everything gets settled by a card game yet?) or the inter-academical duel between their best 2 duelists. For lack of ambitiousness the first half probably works best in the entire series. The cast is colourful, the cards are interesting enough to keep fans of the TCG invested and aside from the general premise, it's not too ridiculous.
The second half of season 1 on the other hand... as much as I enjoyed it as a kid, it's writing isn't particularly good or creative. A group of deulists called the Shadow Riders want to snatch a legendary card trio (The Sacred Beasts - a knock off of the Egyptian God cards from the original YGO!, but with the difference, that back in those days the Sacred Beasts actually had playable copies out for IRL), that are hidden at the academy. Sounds fine, problem however is, the group doesn't make much sense; one member is a brainwashed former star student of the academy, whose brainwashing mask only gets explored in the final season, then there's a real life vampire and a real life amazon, a pharaoh from the past, a group of duel spirits (basically playing cards, that have a soul - there's quite a bit of this in this series actually), an alchemist and a minor villain from the first half, who just got picked into the line-up randomly. The whole organization doesn't make much sense and is just a way for them to display their (to be fair) cool cards. Their boss is an old fart, who wanted to attain eternal youth through possessing and using the Sacred Beasts, he's (SPOILER) the former principal of the academy and they make it seem like he's been around for decades, but then characters from the original series start popping up barely aged, making you question the entire timeline's logic.
Season 2 starts out fair enough with the main characters winnig streak slowly growing boring by using the same cards over and over again, so they come up with a magic plot device (SPOILER - the villain makes him unable to see his cards) for him to change his deck up with cards he supposedly invented as a kid, that actually got made and were send to space were they became duel spirits. There is Aster Phoenix, a pro duelist, who is butthurt over the main character using the same cards as him (how this info passed the asses of students, who want to be pro as well, is beyond me), except Jaden's beloved Elemental Heroes aren't even his main deck as it turns out (big surprise!). The main villain of the season creates a card game playing cult and fearing the heel-turn of star student Zane Truesdale, whom even Jaden failed to defeat in season 1, the principal starts some kind of world championship on the academy, that's initially really hyped up, but ends up being ignored by the main characters, leads to the villain acquiring a death ray and Zane's heel-turn having no real malicious intent other than it being an attempt by the writers to reinvent a fan favourite character by making him edgy. The entire tournament finishes (aside from the final duel, that nobody probably cares about) off-screen and is completely overshadowed by Jaden facing the cult-leader Sartorius.
In season 3 they introduce a whole batch of new characters, who are exchange students from other academies. They have interesting playing styles, but are mostly there to replace other secondary protagonists, who the writers had no idea, what to do with in that season. The season is basically divided into 3 part: First an exchange professor introduces a new educational method - the bio-bands, which measure students dueling spirits and gets them promoted or demoted based on the results. The duel academy personel is of course a-ok with this (yeah, I really have questions about the quality of the school curriculum). Turns out (SPOILER) the professor is just sucking out kids energy, so an evil duel spirit can bring his adopted son back, all this results in the duel spirit gaining power and transferring duel academy to the duel spirit world, where monsters will fight you by playing cards and the students who got their life sucked out by the bio-bands turn into zombies. The season culminates in the main character turning into an evil armor-wearing overlord, who starts decimating his friends. After the least conspicious exchange student plays a draw with him, which defeats his evil side, but leaves his real him unaffected, he gets conflicted, but still ends up facing the evil duel spirit.
Season 4 was japanese only and if you couldn't tell by now, I've been watching the dub. In this season the main character changes drastically, meanwhile the implied evil from season 1 (the mask, that corrupted the star student) returns to make his life a hell one last time. The season has some interesting parts, that finish the arcs of several secondary protagonists, who were benchwarming in the last season. Too bad the tacked on writing, doesn't quite make it as satisfying as it could be. Rather than implementing those minor character arcs in the plot of the main arc as a whole and returning to them every now and then, they just chose to slap 2 episode clusters together and let it all play out fairly quickly. It's fine, I guess.
So yes, the writing is oftentimes nonsensical and it really feels like they were just making things up as they went along. There is also alot of filler, which I could frankly enjoy about as much as the other stuff, as long as the duelists were using actually existing cards in the episodes. On the other hand you had the cursed doll using a cursed doll deck or the tennis player playing a tennis themed deck, that nobody would have even wanted to be real and which episodes, I honestly skipped on this re-watch.
It may sound like I hate the series, but in all honesty I had my fun. Unfortunately, that won't make me give the series a star in the category of plot.
I recently watched an Arc-V fake sub video, in which an antagonist, who travelled to duel academy, is mocking other characters using YGO! GX cards by destroying their monsters and criticizing the series' flaws. It was funny, but I found the statement, Jaden was the only character, who got character development, to be false.
Speaking of Jaden; a lot of people have praised Jaden's development from season 3 to 4. I thought it was ok, but not great. It's mainly because it's undermined by previous Jaden episodes, that did something similair. It just didn't feel fresh, but the end result is nevertheless remarkable. Personally I prefered the manga Jaden much more, with a backstory that didn't feel made up on the spot 100+ episodes in, him being talented, but not some destined to be legendary duelist after all, plus using the superior manga Elemental Heroes + Masked Heroes and minus the supreme king part (Evil Heroes were kind of cool though).
As for other characters; in my manga review I already mentioned, how I didn't like manga Chazz, who got turned into a Gary Stu. Here he is kid of great, but at times also annoying. Still my favourite though. He's constantly caught up between being the academys's best duelist and being a punching bag and while it does feel like they go a bit on repeats with him, I still like him most. Then there's the aformentioned Syrus, who's a dropout at first, but grows to be the academy's top 3 duelist. There's also Alexis - the girl in the cast - Rhodes and Bastion - the Genius - Misawa, who the writers quickly realised, had no idea what to do with past the first season, so Alexis is another one-off villain in season 2 and Bastion basically becomes a joke at some point. Zane isn't that good either. He keeps combo breaking ATK points like he has star power in Guitar Hero, but is just the designated genius in season 1 and 3edgy5me in season 2. He does get more interesting in season 3 to be fair, when his Cyberdark deck (which is honestly much weaker than his season 1 deck) starts giving him heart attacks. Then there's the season 2 and 3 secondary protagonists, who are also not particularly great characters, but fun to watch dueling.
Most of the villains are kind of flat. I have never been a fan of one-off main villains like Kagemaru and (arguably) Nightshroud/Darkness, who the writers didn't even bother giving a full set of cards. I mean Yami Marik from original YGO! wasn't that brilliant as a character either, but atleast I can associate a bunch of torture cards with him. I guess Yubel was best, having some beef with Jaden from the past.
It's fine. It looks like Yu-Gi-Oh!, but it's visually not amazing and has ages poorly, when compared to the newer seasons.
I'm giving another star here for sounding right. Nothing is particularly amazing to the point, where I would actively seek out the OST on Youtube, but nothing really grates on me. Since I was watching the dub for as long as possible, I also only know 2 theme songs; the "Get Your Game On" bubblegum punk one, from the dub and the season 4 Precious Time, Glory Days one.
The series is nothing amazing and if we are fair mostly a commercial for the card game. If you have fun with the card game you will likely also enjoy this series, but if you don't you might either be at a complete loss with what you are watching or you will create a web-series mocking the ridiculousness of the series for others to enjoy.
As seen above, I use a star system (symbols I have stolen from Yu-Gi-Oh!'s entries here on MAL) to rate the series/movies in terms of the significant categories, which can indicate its quality. Those ratings do affect the final score I give the series/movie, but I do not use a strict mathematical method to assign the final score. Ultimately I weigh the final ratings by considering the stars given. I do not consider the categories to be equivalent and value a good story and characters over good art or a cathcy soundtrack. As far as the stars given go, I use a four stage scale:
(-) - bad, a series/movie is terrible in this category
(☆) - okay, it's fine, tolerable, but likely nothing special
(☆☆) - good, it's good, but may have flaws or isn't quite among the best I've seen in the category
(☆☆☆) - great, the best rating I can give, when it's truely remarkable in the category
First of all, I came here, not to talk about the story, but to get rid of this burden after watch this series
I have a lots of comments about this one
I am a Yu-gi-oh fan, and I am the type of person who likes to see all series
I got really disapointed, unfortunately I saw this GX series in 3 languages, the first season I've downloaded in the original language (JAP) and I started to like it, but around 50th or 60th episodes, I couldn't find in Japanese, and downloaded Portuguese Version, which kinda sucks
Around 80th's I had the bad luck to encounter the disgusting version
of Cartoon Network and 4Kids, which made me hate GX series
It's all wrong in English series, the duel card format, the soundtrack, the voices and their accents, the fuckin' american lame jokes that completely ruined the Anime scene
Well, I would love to see this one all in Japanese, but I couldn't find, so... life sucks, and that's why I scored as a 4
After this experience, I am completely against DUBBED versions
This is my first time righting a review for an anime, but I will explain this as thoroughly as possible. I watched this in Sub because 4 Kids did a terrible job.
Yu-Gi-Oh! GX follows a time period after that of the original Yugioh and we follow Yuki Judai, who is on his way to an elite school for duelists "Duel Academia" , as he progresses his success often grabs the attention others negatively, much like the original series with Yugi and Kaiba. If you watch the beginning your going to
feel like this show is one of those normal high-school settings just with the addition of dueling, however as you progress things become much more intense. The first two seasons in a way are created for Judai to develop himself and for that reason they are the worst seasons of the series.
Once you get to season 3 that's when the true enjoyment starts to kick in. This is the period of time where Judai has to use everything he learned from his time to solve situations that are extremely difficult for him. Not only does the intensity grow but he starts to make decisions that can cause grief and sadness to those around him. If you are looking at this series and thinking should I watch it or not, here is my recommendation to you, if you want to go through the complete character development and all the experiences he has watch it from the beginning.
If you want to get right into the juicy part of this start watching at the start of the 3rd season which I believe starts at episode 105. The reason I believe this is fine is because major characters of the story come into play right into this episode and the plot starts to pick up from the slow pacing that was occuring before that.
The soundtracks for GX were good but nothing too special, the best opening imo being the third one. However the sound matches in the setting always in a good way to give the viewer the idea of what is about to occur.
Overall, GX was the deepest and most enjoying of the Yugioh series, the reason being the hardships that Judai had to go through, and how he overcame his situation. Also his emotions and the way he reacted when things did not go his way becomes a very enjoyable thing to watch. I would highly recommend this anime to anyone who is a fan of duel monsters and rate it the highest out of any of the series over the original as well.
This isn't a perfect series, it has it's ups and downs, the first season suffers a lot from introducing a lot of characters and no real over all plot, though that improves in the second and third season.
What the show does have that I love is some really nice themes, and doesn't seem to suffer from 1 card syndrome like other yugioh's I've watched, where the main char only ever uses the same card every fight to win. His deck is varied with enough surprises and new editions, along with everyone else.
What I do like is how every characters deck has it's own theme
and feel to it that progresses for the most part as the series goes on. We see a evolution in most of the characters deck's and themselves.
I really enjoyed this one over all, recently having watched the third season I had skipped before, and found it enjoyable, despite being darker then previous stuff.
I would suggest checking it out if you love the card game, or just like the anime in general, I originally was concerned about the theme of a school wasn't sure if there would be enough there, but while the first season like I said had some of that issue, it got better over all, and still enjoyed the first season.
I don't get why everyone says Yugioh GX sucks so much, I prefer it more than the other three. Probably because of the dub. But this series was amazing and heart-felt and I don't regret watching it.
Okay, first off the story. The first season is what drew me to the series because of the light-hearted themes in it. At one point, things kinda got serious but nonetheless it still had its comic relief. The story was kind of scattered though. It wasn't until around later did it finally get into it's actual plot, not that I had a problem with. The second season was the
same thing but with a different plot. The third season started off light hearted but then later on we see a much more meaningful plot that leads on into season four. I loved that. Not even the duels turned me off. In fact, it had me on the edge of my seat. And I'm a girl. :P
The art was really nice. But at some points they didn't color it right. Like for example, they had once colored Judai/Jaden's eyes grey and they forgot to shade in the orange-brownish patch at the top of his head. Anyways, the art was really well done and not lazy at all.
The Soundtrack was really good but I prefer the yugioh. The music really matched the scene that was playing and it really added to the mood. Also I fell in love with the season two ending - Wake Up Your Heart by KENN (Judai's voice actor) and the season three opening - Teardrop by BOWL.
Another thing I really like about this series is the characters, especially Judai. The other protagonists for the other yugioh series (not sure about Yuma) have a sort of win-or-die attitude and have been slapped or punched for being so...ahem..."EMOtional"(once again not sure about Yuma). But not Judai. Well, before season four but still. Judai would probably get slapped for being so naïve or stupid. He had a happy-go-lucky air around him that draws people to him like moths to a light. Even when he lost, he still had his happy air. However, at the start of season four, Judai had undergone a major character change, which in other words he matured with a twist. And I also love his "twin" Johan/Jesse. I wished he came in around season one so he could get more screen time and character development.
I really enjoyed watching this series and re-watching my favorite moments over and over. I recommend this show to those who like Yugioh and school-based animes. Even if you dont, still just watch it, you wont regret it. Forget what everyone else is saying about how this show sucks.
Overall, I give this show a 10. As I said before, you will not regret watching this show and the duels are just as amazing. But if you want the full enjoyment of this show, watch the japanese version like I did.
Following up the original yugioh series, we have yugioh GX. Now if you are looking for something to top the original, this is sadly not it. While pretty fun to watch the story lacks a lot from the original yugioh which has a pretty deep story, GX offers a more childish and fun story to watch.
Story 5/10: Jaden goes to a dueling school and just goes threw seperate arcs. It is a simple story and not very in depth. Fun to watch, nothing more.
Art 7/10: The art in yugioh GX is average, the monsters look alright but some are made childish, too childish and
Sound 9/10: Music is very catchy, game on get your game on!
Character 7/10: Most of the characters develop throughout the anime and there are some hilarious characters in the pack, although also some annoying ones. Kid show, variety isn't massive.
Enjoyment 9/10: It's a very fun series to watch but nothing that will change your life.
Overall 6/10: Watch it for fun if you're bored but don't expect much. I recommend watching original yugioh instead its better or the abridged series, even better than that.
This is going to be a rather harsh review so skip it if you do like the series. Also it contains spoilers for some bits so read at your own risk.
I honestly do not understand how anybody is giving this series above a 5. It is one of the most painfully mediocre anime series I've come across in all my years of watching anime. The second half of 5D's which is a trainwreck compared to the first half is HIGH ART compared to GX. I'll admit I've only watched random bits of the series, but I've watched large chunks across the first three seasons, so
I think I've seen enough to be able to judge it. However, if you do like this series, I commend you and am glad you can find some redeeming value in this series.
These characters... Calling them "characters" is too kind. Even calling them cardboard cutouts would be too generous. These are some of the most static, cliche, bland, forgettable characters I've come across in all my years of viewing anime. There is almost no character development to speak of. Even when they DO get development, they tend to act like their development never happened.
The best example of this is Chronos. He starts out as an antagonist then drifts to being a bit of an ally to Judai and co toward the end of the first season. He even ends up being proud of Hayato and recommends him to Industrial Illusions. But by time the second season starts, he's actively trying to destroy the Osiris Red Dorm.
The characters are also inconsistent.
Manjoume is extremely driven, hard-headed, and independent, but during the last bit of the first season, he falls in love with Asuka quite literally out of nowhere. I mean I skipped the first half of the first season, so maybe there was some interest shown before. However, there was absolutely NO indication of that during the previous episodes of the Seven Star Assassin's arc.
The worst part is that the characters are static beyond belief. I watched half of the first season, part of the second, and half of the third, but I saw absolutely no character growth in anybody. Judai was still the same, boring shounen protag he always was. Manjoume was the same joke he always was. Shou remained the same coward he always was. Misawa wasn't even there for half of the third season.
There is no character to growth to speak of. I'm a writer so I know what real character growth look like.
Mostly static characters are not bad in and of themselves. In fact, they can be very interesting. However, when the entire cast is static, that's when there's a problem. None of the characters grow at ALL.
The animation and sound on this series are...mediocre at best. There's nothing that really makes it stand out from other serialized anime.
Admittedly, I am not the most qualified person to judge the story since I've seen maybe 20-40% of the series, so I'm going to more use this category to judge the quality of the writing from what I saw.
As you can tell, I thought it was absolutely dreadful. this is one of the most filler-ridden, soulless pieces of garbage I've ever seen. To put into perspective just how trashy this anime is, I started watching at episode 27 and I had NO trouble keeping up with what had happened. I was admittedly a little bit more confused when I jumped over basically all of season two into season three, but I felt like I had lost nothing when I skipped so much. The stories were mostly self-contained enough to not really need too much backstory on what had happened in previous seasons. Even for when season two bled over into three, I jumped in without much of any trouble. I know this was one way to attract viewers as the anime progressed while it was airing, but it's still pretty bad.
The worst part of this series if the FILLER. I know it's to be expected of any long-running show especially in shounen, but that doesn't excuse just how tedious and BORING it is. I admittedly skipped over the majority of season two, but the first ten episodes at least have next to NOTHING related to the plot. The main plot during those episodes focuses around trying to get rid of the Osiris Red dorm. The main plot for the first bit of the seconds season is literally just trying to get rid of one of the dorms.
However, the worst part of the lazy writing is the deus ex machina. It happens three times in the last bit of season 1 and the first bit of season 2. The first one is when they need to get the spirit gates open so they have Manjoume randomly fall in love with Asuka and take the keys. When he loses to her, the gates open and Judai faces Kagemaru. What's supposed to be the first season's climax is a rushed clusterfuck. It takes only about two episodes to resolve which would be fine if it were any good. But no. I don't care if they established the Philosopher's Stone card a few episodes before, but they didn't establish its effects. It grants Judai three wishes for cards he needs and that's how he wins. It's anticlimactic at best and offensively lazy writing at worst. I know they were probably strapped for time, but if you're going to have this duel be the climax, THEN GIVE IT THE PROPER TIME IT NEEDS. DON'T JUST HAVE IT END BECAUSE JUDAI CAN GET WHATEVER HE NEEDS TO BEAT THE BAD GUY. The other example comes in season two when Judai gets his new deck. He's literally just whisked away to a planet to resolve an emotional crisis and is handed the cards he needs to defeat Ed.
The writing seems to get somewhat better in season three since you get the plot moving forward unimpeded without filler for awhile...but then it just stops for a small filler arc with zombie students.
This is where I gave up on the series and couldn't continue due to the painful mediocrity. The story is admittedly interesting, but there's an old adage in writing that holds true here: "Strong characters can carry a weak plot but a strong plot cannot carry weak characters." That is so painfully true in the third season of GX. The plot is interesting but the characters are so one dimensional you just cannot care about them.
If negative scores were a thing on this website, my enjoyment would be in the negatives. This series bored me at best and insulted my intelligence at worst.
I'll go into my personal reasons for watching the series at this point.
I don't remember exactly how or why I started watching 5D's last year, but I did and I absolutely fell in love with it. I'm a test-based roleplayer, so it was inevitable that my main partner and I started messing around in the 5D's universe. My main character is Aki and my muse of her has grown and drifted from canon in some ways. Mine can actively see and interact with the duel spirits in her deck, so I picked up GX since it's the series that delves into them the most.
Needless to say, I gave up before I got through the entirety of the third season.
Is it unfair to compare GX to 5D's? I don't think so, but it's basically apples and oranges. 5D's is a great series with strong character development and interactions (for the most part) with a compelling plot and characters. GX is a mediocre, stale, cliche, cookie-cutter shounen anime that has little to no redeeming value. Even the worst of 5D's is far better than the best of GX. I'd rather watch the Pre-WRGP arc of 5D's which is 90% filler over a ten-episode stretch of GX.
I honestly do not understand how anybody legitimately enjoys this series.
Yu-Gi-Oh GX, how I love you so! I don't know why this is one of the most hated Yu-Gi-Oh series, because in my opinion, it's the best! I'm not quite sure why, but perhaps it's my nostalgia for it. Of course, the original Yu-Gi-Oh is a VERY close second to this for me, but for some reason this kind of just takes the cake. Let me give this a quick review.
It's Yu-Gi-Oh. Don't expect a deep plot obviously, because there won't be one. It's about people playing a children's card game for fun and to be the best, but there are also a lot
of villains that appear that have the power to steal souls! It's not bad, but it's silly, don't you think? That's why I give the story a 6, which is fair. But surprisingly, there actually are some pretty damn deep moments within the anime, some of which could maybe even make me cry!
The art is very nice to look at. There are some continuity errors at times with the wrong card being displayed on the duel disk, but nobody really cares about that, anyway, right? Regardless, the art style is nice but it's nothing groundbreaking.
The OST is actually really good! The intro is really catchy, and a lot of the music that plays in really serious and dark moments is VERY creepy and cool! It definitely really adds to the theme of the show!
Probably Yu-Gi-Oh GX's best trait are the characters. It has a very lovable main character with many lovable side characters, and some really cool and interesting villains! I think that the characters are the reason why I prefer this to the original. I just think that they were a bit better for some reason.
I'll always keep coming back to this anime and watching some of the epic duels. The show can be hilarious at times, and overall it's just a lot of fun to watch! Maybe not so much if you didn't grow up watching it though. If you watched the original Yu-Gi-Oh as a child and didn't watch this, and you tried watching this, you probably wouldn't like it at all, because it's quite a lot different and more light-hearted.
This isn't a deep psychological anime or anything, and it does have quite a few continuity errors, but those can be ignored. For example, a lot of the card effects differ from how they work in real life, along with some of the game mechanics. Also, there are some instances when Jaden only uses a card once or twice, and then it's never seen from again. It makes you wonder where it went! But yeah, definitely watch it if you love the Yu-Gi-Oh series in general, because you're missing out if you skipped over this. Seriously, it's great. Quirky, funny, cool, and overall just a great anime!
Getting through GX has been quite the journey for me… Of the first three seasons—which are the ones I associate with my childhood—GX was the only one I never got into. And in the past I would have said it was because I didn’t like the Duel Academy premise or because Jaden was annoying… Or basically, I just latched onto all the most popular reasons to hate this season. Even when I decided to go back through Yu-Gi-Oh the way I had with Pokemon, I seriously considered just skipping this one… but at the end of it all, I’m really glad I didn’t.
beginning, GX had its ups and downs, but I was surprised by how much potential I saw right off the bat. The one that caught me most off-guard was Jaden himself. I was prepared to just… tolerate him all the way through, but you know what? Jaden Yuki is not the god-awful character I often see him made out to be. It’s all about context. Early on, GX’s story is mostly about the school itself. Along the same lines of shows like Baka and Test or Assassination Classroom, Duel Academy values grades above all else, and those who get placed in the lowest-scoring dorm (like Jaden) are treated like dirt. Jaden, who’s unflappably cheerful and couldn’t care less about his grades or schoolwork, is completely unfazed by this and inadvertently manages to empower many of his other classmates as he continues to succeed despite his position in their little Duel Academy society.
Unfortunately, this also leads us into one of this show’s flaws… GX had a problem with focus as a whole. The longer this series went on, the less meaning the different dorms held. So, though we see characters making disparaging comments about being a Slifer Red almost all the way to the end, it stops feeling relevant pretty early on. But it did succeed in giving me an appreciation of Jaden. He wouldn’t become a truly interesting character until year three, and he may not be the best protagonist ever created, but he was designed to be the perfect hero for these particular circumstances. And his carefree attitude started to feel like a breath of fresh air amongst his group of more serious friends.
Most of Jaden’s friends were all hindered by the same thing: they were set up to be likable characters that the series itself never spent enough time on. Honestly, I could go on and on about the potential almost every single one of them had. I loved the direction they took with Chazz. He was introduced as the new edgy, rival character, but the showrunners acknowledged very early on that no one was going to replace Seto Kaiba. (In the same way that Yugi and Jaden have very little in common past their main character charisma. I never got the impression that GX was trying to replace the original; perhaps the strongest thing it had going for it was that it was committed to being its own thing.) Chazz falls from grace very early into things and when he finds himself again, he returns as this goofy, over-the-top, complete joke of a character… but people embrace him for it, and I loved that. Even though he’s mostly pushed out of the spotlight later by some of the other characters.
I had high hopes for Alexis. She was shaping up to be a strong female character, something not exactly in abundance in my childhood shows. I liked that it was her skill that set her apart from their classmates—rather than something shallow like her beauty. She does develop a one-sided crush on Jaden, but it never completely takes over her character like you see so often in shows that are aimed more towards boys. And the mystery with her brother gave her and interesting purpose and kind of drives the plot in the beginning. Unfortunately, more than any other character, Alexis really fades into the background as the series goes on. (I really liked the role she played with the tag-team duel near the end, but it felt overwritten, almost, as Jaden learns pretty much exactly the same lesson—again—from his duel with Yugi.)
Of all the characters in the original little troupe, Syrus is the only one I never really warmed up to, and I think it’s because he’s the only one who doesn’t really have that lack-of-screen-time excuse. Syrus’s early development did catch my attention—his insecurities and relationship with his brother gave him just as much potential as everyone else. But it takes so long for Syrus to grow… And there’s really no excuse for it, because he gets several episodes devoted specifically to overcoming those insecurities… but there’s no follow-through. The next episode, he goes back to being exactly the same person he was before, excessive self-doubt perfectly intact. By the time he finally starts standing on his own mid-season three, it just felt too little, too late. Endearing me to him at that point just wasn’t in the cards.
In case it’s not already apparent, it was the characters that really drew me in to GX. The first two seasons’ plots were kind of hit or miss for me. I think season one did some interesting things—especially the twist they threw in with Banner—but kind of dropped the ball with the whole missing kids plot, which was the most interesting thing about it. Season two’s story… just wasn’t for me. It felt kind of filler-y. (Though, if there’s one thing, story wise, that I really liked about season two, it was the way Jaden’s deck had to evolve to combat what he was up against. Oddly enough, that’s something I haven’t seen too often in this franchise.) But if it did have one thing going for it, it was the season that brought in one of my favorite characters.
I love Aster. After the turn Chazz’s character took, Aster was the rival we could take seriously. And I love the way he parallels Jaden. They both have hero-themed decks, and Aster clearly views himself as The Good Guy. So, because he starts out on the side of the villains, it was clear that he was going to get a redemption of some sort, but it happened a lot sooner than I was expecting. Aster starts distancing himself from the people he’s working with almost immediately when he starts to suspect their goals may not be so pure. And that’s something I really respect. He may be a (loveable) snarky little asshole, but he’s not too caught up in his own edginess. And there’s a sweet (if extremely brief) character development moment where he goes from constantly distancing himself from others to being willing to sacrifice himself for the people he now considers to be his friends. That one aspect is very blink-and-you-miss-it, but in general, Aster was one of the few characters who felt fully developed by the show’s end.
But season three was where GX really started to shine. It starts out by introducing us to four More characters, all of whom are interesting in their own ways. Most notably, of course, is Jesse, who quickly becomes Jaden’s new best friend as they bond over their shared ability to see duel monster spirits. (Another plot point that had kind of been building up to this moment.) You might be thinking, “Wow, that’s a lot of characters!” (And I didn’t even stop to talk about Bastion, Hassleberry, Atticus, or Zane.) There was a moment where I just had to stop the episode—paused on a scene where Jaden’s friends were all gathered together looking for him—and count how many people were on screen. (And there were, like, nine of them.) And it kind of blew me away. I’m not sure I can name another show with that many characters making up our hero’s team. (Maybe Digimon 02, during the few scenes where the older team was there to help out the new kids.)
And I kid you not, maybe two episodes later, the show suddenly gives us more of a backstory for Jaden. You want to talk about things that really blew me away… I was prepared for Jaden to be this carefree, happy-go-lucky kid from start to finish with that easygoing attitude being his greatest strength. (In a very Davis-like way, speaking of 02.) And then suddenly we’re given this story of how Jaden’s parents never had time for him and a… problem with one his card spirits made it so that he didn’t have any real friends either. And so you just know that all this—going on these crazy adventures with a huge group of friends—has got to be everything he’s ever wanted. Which was a really poignant realization… that then came back and hit me like a truck when it all started falling apart around him.
Season three was really good in general and got really dark. I know it’s hardly unique to Yu-Gi-Oh GX, but I love that storytelling twist where the hero has to accept his flaws or inner darkness as a part of himself, rather than overcome them completely. So that moved me too. Jaden grows more during the second half of season three than in all of the two and a half seasons leading up to it. I mean, I liked all the new characters introduced, Zane and Aster really shined in this season, it’s where Syrus finally comes into his own, I liked the story it told… The whole thing was just a great ride.
Season four… had its ups and downs. It was a chance to come down from all the horror of season three and wrap things up. I think the episodes devoted to getting the kids ready for graduation were really good. Throughout, I wasn’t generally as fond of the episodes that were just about their everyday school lives. (Original Duel Monsters had entire filler arcs, but I could get into those more easily than this style of individual, more inconsequential filler episodes.) But these episodes felt meaningful and focused more on individual characters, many of whom had been neglected for most of the series. The actual evil they faced felt a little… overdone, given that it really just boils down to the kids being afraid to go out into the real world and having to find that courage. I think what disappointed me most, though, was that it really doesn’t explore how Jaden’s changed since the big event at the end of season three and barely touches on his new connection with Yubel. I mean, it’s a change that’s really clear just looking at him, but I would have liked to see a little more self-reflection there. And I feel like the big lesson that final evil teaches them could have easily been worked into the character episodes. I did like the way GX wrapped up, though. Jaden’s new goal for himself also felt like a good representation of GX trying to stand on its own, apart from the original.
I feel like I need to take a step back and just breathe, trying to wrap this up in any coherent way. The thing is, my reaction to season three tends to make it seem, even to myself, like I enjoyed GX more than I actually did. And don’t get me wrong, it did get really good for a while there. And I was really invested in most of their (inadequately explored) characters. But then I have to remember that the first two seasons were really hard to get into most of the time. (We’re talking, like, 100-120 episodes before it was gripping enough for me to want to start binge-watching episodes whenever I had a spare moment.) And most of the things I loved about those characters were… well, inadequately explored. At the end of it all, I am really glad I didn’t just skip right to 5Ds like I was seriously considering. GX was very different from what I’d been expecting, but most of those surprises were pleasant. And I’m walking away from this experience with fond memories.
Well, as the animations has really been out-dated and worst for the picture quality. I have to say, it's hard to fill out enjoyment when old shows like the first series of Mobile Suit Gundam looks better than this or any older shows. The company that did this did it in lack of cash and grab. The English Dubbed characters themes are all over the place and doesn't align with the series themes. Each voice actor has a distinctive tone of voice that aches my head as of hearing them speak per line. Again, the sound-track is always so loud and it's not fitting for
each scene. I do like the GX's opening. They could've done an ending as well for the series with Pharaoh and him walking together or something. But, it's a good classic nostalgia for people who've been watching 4Kids for years.