I’ve fallen back in love with anime over the last year or so. New series have become less predictable, more mature and boast a higher quality of animation, usually reserved for feature films. And while I love a slice of Japanese animation, I absolutely adore seeing the piss taken out of them, especially when it’s done well. Here’s three such gems that you need to see.
Dragonball Z The Abridged Series
Mighty alien warrior Goku and his fellow fighters protect the earth and the rest of the galaxy, usually by screaming really loudly for fifteen episodes at a time.
Also, power ups, fusions, energy beams and magical balls that summon a wish-granting dragon. Only in Japan.
Dragonball Z Abridged takes everything ludicrous about the original premise, and magnifies it a hundredfold. Boasting some superb voice acting from the fellows at Team Four Star and high production values, the series so far has covered the Saiyan and Namek sagas and a couple of the direct to DVD films.
Expect snappy dialogue, musical numbers, a Mr Popo who secretly pulls the strings on everything behind the scenes and the ever amusing “Krillin Owned” pop-up counter in this hilarious take on the beloved anime.
Yu Gi Oh The Abridged Series
I’ll be honest here, and admit that while I love the actual card game from this series, the cartoon itself has to be one of the dumbest tales ever to sell merchandise.
An Egyptian pharoah, a childrens trading card game, revenge-seeking enemies from the past and in a later spin-off, CARD GAMES ON MOTORCYCLES!
A main character that believes the universe revolves around him, a plucky female sidekick who absolutely refuses to shut up about friendship, a rival who is rich enough to screw all the rules and a villain who makes the act of giving a hug something bloody and homicidal.
While the quality itself wasn’t much to brag about in the beginning, after 58 episodes, Yu Gi Oh Abridged is looking damn good as one of the longest running series out there.
Constantly funny, twisted and stacked with extra content, this show makes an animation about a children’s card game actually worth watching.
Naruto The Abridged Series
Young Uzumaki Naruto is determined to one day become the leader of his village, using his ninjutsu skills and the destructive tailed beast demon that is sealed within him.
Alongside his friends, Naruto fights to protect those dearest to him, and to earn recognition at the same time, as he grows in power throughout his life.
A raspy voiced tween who wants to do…something in life, so BELIEVE IT! Alongside hyper-emo Sasuke Uchiha, manly voiced Sakura and his sensei who is not David Bowie, David Bowie-san, Naruto spends his days refusing to giving up smoking and perfecting the art of the suicide-no jutsu.
It only clocks in at eight episodes and a movie so far, but Naruto Abridged is the funniest one on this list so far. Featuring an all star voice cast from the abridged dubbing community and some slick editing, it’s a real treasure, albeit one that updates slower than a DBZ transformation. Also, NSFW language, so don’t play this stuff at work.