Yu Yu Hakusho is a shonen anime classic. Back in the 90s when Dragon Ball Z reigned supreme, Yu Yu Hakusho was one of the few anime to challenge it for the prestigious crown of shonen anime's best. Competing with it both overseas in Japan and here in the West through Cartoon Network's Toonami block. Though, it may seem like Dragon Ball Z stood the test of time better others believe that Yu Yu Hakusho was truly the better show.
Which is why it is still fondly remembered. It's fanbase still alive and active on the internet intending to turn the popular show into the latest meme. Let's journey through some of the best attempts.
10 Right In The Birthday
Fans of Yu Yu Hakusho on Toonami, be prepared because this one is gonna hit you fast and hit you hard. We are all old. Of course, most of us are still considered young in our late twenties and thirties, but we are no longer the young bucks that could waste every day away watching anime in front of our television screens. We are firmly adults with our own set of adult responsibilities.
It's to the point now where some fans are starting to relate more to Genkai than to the protagonist, Yusuke Urameshi. Now wanting to build upon the present so those younger can have a good future. You either die a Yusuke or live long enough to see yourself become a Genkai.
9 No Friends
To put it as nicely as possible... Yusuke Urameshi was a big ol' asshole at the beginning of the series. A delinquent by nature, he constantly bunked the rules and any authoritative figure in his general direction (even if a lot of them deserved it). He was quick to fight and seemed to enjoy annoying his only friend Keiko every chance he got.
He got better as the series went on, the first part of the series focusing almost solely on his character improvement before he ever started waving around a Spirit Gun. Though it still took a while before he could be considered anything but a loner. Eventually earning the friendship of Kurama, Hiei, and Kuwabara throughout the series.
8 Unintentional Cosplay
Speaking about Kuwabara, he is possibly the most meme-able character in the series. Not the brightest bulb in the show and far from a ladies' man, Kuwabara, and his antics, have gone on to be a frequent part of Yu Yu Hakusho's memes. And it sure does help that he looks exactly like a famous Basketball player.
It really is uncanny. The face, the expression, and the hair... Especially the hair! You might think this was an entry in one of our "Cosplay that Look Exactly Like the Characters" lists, but Blake Griffin only has an accidental resemblance to Kuwabara. Still, it is something that makes watching a Pistons' game more enjoyable.
7 Power Couple
It is about to suddenly make a lot of sense why Koenma straight up cosplayed Tuxedo Mask in a few episodes of the anime. Kurama even goes so far as to throw a rose while proclaiming "Just call me Tuxedo Mask..." during another part of the series in the Viz translation of the manga.
Now, why did Yu Yu Hakusho think it was okay to make such blatant references to Sailor Moon? Well, because the author eventually married the woman that created the series! Forming one of manga's strongest power couples that we're sure is the inspiration of several Yu Yu Hakusho and Sailor Moon crossover fanfiction.
6 Opening Song
We wouldn't blame you for finishing the rest of the song. If a show wants a sure-fire way to be remembered years later, a memorable opening is one of the best ways to do so. Yu Yu Hakusho is special in that department because the opening song, Smile Bomb, is just as good in Japanese as it is in English.
Originally sung by Mawatari Matsuko who was a Japanese singer-songwriter in the 90s, she not only penned the opening but also was responsible for most of the ending songs as well. Later the opening was adapted into English by Sara White who did a fine job matching the intonations and rhythm of the original singer.
Here's a helpful chart to every argument the fan community still has concerning Yu Yu Hakusho. These talking points have started much contention in the fan community ever since the show ended and there are no signs of it dying down anytime soon.
Though even if they are arguing, it is still great to see fans still talking about this great show. They may not always agree on who, what, and where was best for the series, but their love for the anime still shows in how they can pick apart every episode. Let us just try and keep the arguments friendly from now on and all admit that Kuwabara was the best character. (Okay, it was worth a shot.)
4 Background Characters
Tuxedo Mask wasn't the only reference that Yu Yu Hakusho made, several others cameoed in the show in many blink-and-you'll-miss-it moments in the series.
Along with Zangief appearing during one of the episodes of the show, several other Street Fighters show up in the background of that arc. Along with the Red Cyclone, Dhalsim, E. Honda, and other characters that resemble Ryu, Chun-Li and others make appearances in the show. It may take a savvy and eagle-eyed viewer to point them out, but the show also makes several references to other franchises like Virtua Fighter, Super Sentai, and even the classic Journey to the West.
3 Know The Difference
"Mulberry is a tree, Kuwabara is a man..." But Kuwabara was never really much of a ladies' man. After a short (and non-existent) fling with Botan, the little lover boy has his sights set on the ice apparition Yukina.
He then proceeds to develop a case of oneitis the likes of which have broken many young men. She never really seems to reciprocate his feelings, but that does stop the young man from trying to impress her every time they meet. She's his little angel and all he wants is a piece of that sweet heaven. Too bad he doesn't know her twin brother is the Devil.
2 Anything For The Win
It didn't stick, but Kuwabara was more than prepared to die if it meant giving Yusuke the needed motivation to beat Toguro even if he settled on it far too quickly. The poor guy needs a better sense of self-preservation if not only for himself but because he is Yusuke's best friend.
Sure he does make a great speech about his heroic sacrifice before he gets a few fingers through the chest but it essentially does boil down to "Guess I'll die now..." If anything though, it did exactly what he wanted it to and gave Yusuke the needed motivation to beat Toguro. Beyond that, it gave us one of the best laugh out loud scenes in the entire series.
1 Left Out
The Three Kings Saga of Yu Yu Hakusho was the grand finale for the series. The venue changes from the Human World to Makai and all the biggest and baddest character show up for their chance to take over the whole Demon World. All except for one noticeable exception.
While it could be argued that he didn't really have much to do in the arc, being the only fully human member of the main cast and without any legitimate claim to the Demon World's throne, it was still odd to see Kuwabara discarded. Especially because he played such a big role in every arc so far! Knowing Kuwabara, he'd be excited to take on such strong opponents.