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Trivia / YuYu Hakusho

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  • Actor Allusion:
  • Breakthrough Hit: For Studio Pierrot and Director Noriyuki Abe’s team of animators and producers; which among them includes Akiyuki Shinbo. Prior to YYH, Studio Pierrot mainly took cases relating to Shoujo, and the Magical Girl genre. Fueled with the urge to do something ambitious, the then young Abe requested to his higher ups that he wished to get cases related to Shounen Action, which in this case, he was interested in YYH; and his higher ups agreed to let him direct the work, and gave him full liberty in recruiting his teammates and get creative with their animation experimentation. The rest was history.
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    • This also extends to the full Japanese cast of voice actors Director Abe’s team picked out. Abe applied the format of casting a balanced scale of actors from all stages of experience; just the four principal actors alone consists, at that time, one instructor-level voice actor (Shigeru Chiba), one young-and-popular (Nozomu Sasaki), one fifth-year in the business but no name yet semi-rookie (Nobuyuki Hiyama), and one fresh-out-of-training-school New Meat (Megumi Ogata). This gave the cast a smooth Sempai/Kohai chain to look out for one another and seek guidance from those of higher experience. To this day, actors who have participated in this work highly appraised the acting environment they received.
  • Creator Backlash: Togashi ended up not liking the demon form that he created for Hiei, which explains why it was never seen again after its first appearance.
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  • Creative Differences: In an interview, Togashi said the reason was being tired/burned out, as well as saying that Jump rejected his ideas for "deconstructing" the characters, which might allude to a different version of the Three Kings arc that didn't come to fruition (source).
  • Crossdressing Voices: Kurama in the Japanese dub was voiced by Megumi Ogata, a woman. Averted in the English Dub, where he was voiced by a man, and the Filipino dub, where "Denise" was voiced by a woman, albeit under the impression that the character was female. This would be ultimately be played straight when Denise was retconned into "Dennis", who was only ''pretending'' to be a girl.
  • Directed by Cast Member: In the English dub, Justin Cook was the ADR director as well as Yusuke Urameshi's voice actor.
  • Edited for Syndication: For the show's Toonami airing, there were expected alterations made to tone down certain content for its intended younger demographic, but some content was reworked all together:
    • In episode 24 "The Deadly Triad", entire sequences were reworked or out-right removed to cover up for the fact that the demon Miyuki is a transexual.
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    • Similar circumstances surrounded Itsuki the Gatekeeper and his desired romantic relationship with Shinobu Sensui.
    • The manji symbol on the forehead of minor character Kazemaru was removed, due to western sensibilities and inevitable misplaced Nazi associations.
    • In the original episode 66, Toguro volunteers to be sent to Hell. While in the dub, it is changed to Limbo.
  • Executive Meddling: In a case of a postive example, Togashi mentioned in an interview with Shounen Jump Giga that it was his editor who had convinced him to make Hiei into one of the main characters. Togashi initially planned for Hiei to be a one-off villain, but his editor convinced him to make him one of Yusuke's allies.
  • Fountain of Expies:
  • Image Source:
  • Inspiration for the Work: Hiei was stated to be an inspiration for Naruto's Sasuke Uchiha.
  • Keep Circulating the Tapes: The English dub produced by Animax is extremely hard to find. There's a handful of episodes online and all of them are pretty low quality.
    • The Latin American dub of the series has been hit hard by this. The series aired on Cartoon Network from 2004 to 2006 and it never aired again. It did air on a Colombian TV channel in 2009 but they only aired the full series one time before being pulled.
    • The Latin American dub of the second movie is even worse, since it only aired excatly TWO TIMES on TV. The first time was on Cartoon Network in 2006 during the midnight timeslot, and the second time was on a Mexican TV channel in 2009 during the early morning time slot. It hasn't aired on any TV channel ever since, and there are no home video releases.
  • The Other Darrin: Japanese Original
    • TV Anime:
      • Jorge was originally voiced by Hidenari Ugaki in episode 13 before Tomomichi Nishimura, the voice of the series narrator, replaced him for the rest of the series. This recast is notable for The Reveal in the penultimate episode which shows that the narrator and Jorge are one and the same.
      • Kurama's mother, Shiori Minamino, was first voiced by Kumiko Takizawa in her initial appearance. Takizawa was unavailable to return later on so Shiori's appearance in the final arc was performed by Yuri Sato.
    • 10th-15th Anniversary:
      • When the PS2 games were released in 2005 and 2007 respectively, some actors had passed away or were unavailable to play their parts so recasts were necessary. The most prominent example was Suzuki, whose original actor Kazuyuki Sogabe had passed away a year prior to the game's release, so Show Hayami replaced him. The same happened with Rando who was voiced by Junko Minagawa in the game after the original actress, You Inoue, passed from lung cancer in 2003.
    • 25th Anniversary: 100% Maji Battle:
      • In addition to the above-mentioned Junko Minagawa continuing her role as Rando's replacement voice, Sensui is now voiced by Jin Yamanoi due to Rokuro Naya's passing in 2014, Rinku is now voiced by Eriko Matsui as Reiko Kondo passed away in 2007 and Suzuki is darrined yet again, this time by Yuji Kameyama.
      • Second wave of darrin cast list Hana Takeda replaces Chiharu Suzuka as Ruka, Jiro Saito replaces Takashi Taniguchi as Shigure, Yusuke Shirai replaces Eiji Sekiguchi as Sniper, and Naomi Kusumi replaces Hajime Koseki as Kirin.
    • 25th Anniversary: Year 2018 OVA Special:
      • Despite the side chapter TWO SHOTS and the final manga arc had Drama CDs released for YYH’s 10th-anniversary celebration back in the year 2004-2005, aside for the principal, and important cast, all semi-important, and minor roles were recast for the 25th Anniversary OVA.
      • Hidetoshi Nakamura passed away four years prior, so Otake was recast with Masaki Aizawa.
      • Shunjun was recast with Mitsuaki Madono; despite his first voice actor Kazuaki Ito still being active. Director Abe notably explains he cast Madono for his overall familiarity with the YYH universe due to being their Spear Carrier since episode 1, and the main cast would definitely feel instantly cozy at home if Madono was on board. The cast indeed wholeheartedly expressed their appreciation for this recast. Madono had already played some semi-important roles in the series such as Zeru in the Dark Tournament saga and Yanagisawa in the Chapter Black saga.
  • The Other Darrin: English Dub
    • The TV series and movies all had different production companies working on them so this obviously came into play (the movies were dubbed several years before Funimation ever got the rights). Media Blasters and Central Park Media were the other two companies.
    • FUNimation's dub was not entirely immune to this. In episode 23, during a flashback of Hiei's, Shigure (the surgeon who gave him his Jigan eye) was voiced by Jerry Jewell (also Suzaku and Jin) but during his proper appearance in the Three Kings storyline, he was replaced by Pete Webber. The blu-ray version went back and redubbed Jewell's performance with Webber for consistency's sake.
    • King Yama's early voice cameo over the phone in episode 11 was performed by Andrew Chandler (voice of Byakko and Bakken) instead of R. Bruce Elliott who would voice him in the Chapter Black arc. Chandler's performance was kept for the Blu-ray release and not redubbed by Elliott most likely due to an oversight (it was just one line gag at Koenma's expense).
    • Hokushin was redubbed by J. Michael Tatum, replacing Jerome 57 who had voiced him originally. It was probably because he sounded too much like Itsuki, who Jerome had also voiced.
    • Near the end of the Chapter Black arc, for the blu-ray rerelease, several members of the Spirit Defense Force squad were redubbed with more recent actors from their current talent pool. Oho went from Melissa Ellis to Alexis Tipton, Sorai from Ricky Page to Joel McDonald, Ryohi from Clarine Harp (she later voiced Koko near the end of the series) to Stephanie Young, and one of the two unnamed members went from Jim Foronda to Scott Freeman.
    • Hiei and Yukina's mother, Hina, had Kelsey Lewin redub over Lauren Goode from the original. The same happened with her friend Rui who went from Susan Huber (she was previously Sayaka) to Mariela Ortiz. The Ice Elder also went from Cynthia Cranz (Botan) to Juli Erickson (best known for Pinako from both of the Fullmetal Alchemist anime).
    • A few extras during the Dark Tournament were revoiced for diversity with more current actors such as Shishiwakamaru's fangirls and the demon spectators who jeer Onji/Suzuki before the fight with Genkai. This was also repeated during the fight in the hospital during the Chapter Black story, with a few of the nurses being redubbed by the likes of Cherami Leigh, Brina Palencia, and Kate Bristol.
    • Similar to the "remastered" sets of Dragon Ball Z, a few minor redubs for certain characters were made for better performances. In addition to the above mentioned with Shigure, Webber also redubbed his lines for the Three Kings arc. Jeremy Inman redubbed all his work as Suzuki (including correcting the alteration to his name to Suzuka). Subsequent characters who mentioned his name was also corrected (though there are at least three lines where he is still referred to as Suzuka). Aaron Hatch also rerecorded his part as Sniper, sounding much less flat in comparison to his first go at the character.
  • Playing Against Type: Kyle Hebert is versatile, but more well known for voicing hot-blooded characters. On the other hand, his role as Karasu prepared him for Sousuke Aizen of Bleach, a show that arguably draws much inspiration from YuYu Hakusho.
    • Nobuo Tobita—who would've thought that the guy who plays Dirty Coward characters like Kanryu and The Major was once a pretty boy, or that Kamille Bidan would end up as such a villain.
    • Sonny Strait commonly voices characters who either can be very comical or often have comic mishaps happen to them, yet at the same time often display major signs of being more competent than they look. None of that applies to his role as Doctor during the Chapter Black arc, where he plays a creepy Soft-Spoken Sadist.
  • Real-Life Relative: In one very brief scene of the English dub that shows Yusuke and Keiko as children, the child Yusuke is voiced by Aaron Dismuke, Justin Cook's cousin.
  • Referenced by...: The author of Black Clover stated that he based the Third Eye's Evil Eye off of Hiei.
  • Relationship Voice Actor:
    • Being the second major Funimation dub, it shares many voices from Dragonball Z:
      • Botan is ChiChi with a (bad) British accent, Kuwabara is a more boisterous, goofy-sounding Vegeta/Piccolo/Yamcha, Hiei is a significantly more badass version of Emperor Pilaf/Android 17, Yusuke's mother is Android 18, and and Genkai is a more feminine and less androgynous version of Frieza. Kurama also gave out a hardy Tien yell during his final strike against Karasu. One of Keiko's friends in the first episode is very obviously voiced by the same actress as Kid Goku and Kid Gohan.
      • According to one of the commentary tracks, this was a huge problem for the casting committee; the sheer number of characters in DBZ meant that pretty much everyone had already used up their "hero" voices, so they had to dig pretty far down into the well to keep from being a total clone. They finally told the line producer, Justin Cook, to read for Yusuke, as he'd only ever had bit parts on DBZ.
    • For those who have watched Fullmetal Alchemist beforehand (either from the 2003 anime or the Brotherhood dub):
      • Yusuke is Russell Tringham from the first anime, Kuwabara is Major Armstrong, Keiko is Lust, Botan is Paninya, Hiei is Shou Tucker, Kurama is Dolcetto, and Mukuro is Envy. Well, not the EXACT same voices are used, but it's them. Oh, and remember the guy Kurama fought in the episode where we saw Youko Kurama for the first time? Yeah, it's even harder to take him seriously once you can tell it's obviously Edward Elric. Kurama versus Edward, that'd be something ...
      • The Toguro brothers are still brothers in the 2003 anime version. No, seriously - Dameon Clarke (Younger Toguro) plays the younger brother, Scar, and Bill Townsley (Elder Toguro) is Scar's unnamed older brother. They don't retain this in Brotherhood because both brothers were recast.
      • Yanagisawa, the guy that has the copy power in the Chapter Black arc? That's Colonel Mustang. Continuing with the Chapter Black correlations, "Doctor" of Sensui's team is Hughes. Which makes it somewhat disturbing to watch in hindsight when you're realizing that Hughes ends up poisoning his best friend.
      • Amanuma is both Lyra and May Chang, Jorge Saotome and Chu are Majihal and Father, and Shura is Alphonse Elric and young Hohenheim. Each notably portrayed a different character in the dub of Brotherhood than the did in the original series, although in the latter's case it's because he was too old to still play the role rather than the character being absent from the second series.
    • Amusingly enough, minor recurring character Jin is voiced by the same actor as Jimmy Kudo (or Shinichi Kudo, to any purists out there). In both Japanese and English.
  • Screwed by the Network: The anime's fate in the US. It originally aired on Adult Swin with a rather lucrative timeslot and all it's content uncensored as well. But, at the time, the anime boom was in full swing and Toonami, then airing in the afternoons, was the lead block for anime dubs. Since Yu Yu Hakusho was a shonen series, the heads decided to move the show there. This ended up leading to the show having to be censored as a consequence however, but allowed the series to continue on past the Saint Beast arc into the Dark Tournament and Chapter Black arcs. Near the end of the latter arc, however, the show was suddenly yanked from it's timeslot due to restructuring going on in the company and punted to 4:30am on a Saturday. For most following the series, the show just seemed to have disappeared without a trace as there was no advertisement for this. As a result the “Three Kings” arc was hardly seen by any of the fanbase following it on the airwaves. And the last anyone would see of the series again on TV would be years later when Toonami was revived as part of Adult Swim's “April Fools” stunt where they showed the penultimate episode of the series.
  • Star-Making Role:
  • Technology Marches On: The fact that Chapter Black, a recorded instance of all of humanities' evil is a demonic VHS tape really dates when the show was made.
  • Torch the Franchise and Run: Togashi didn't particularly want to continue the story past the Chapter Black arc (or at least was in conflict with his editors about where the story should go), so after the Three Kings arc (which cuts off mid-story before jumping ahead to the end rather anti-climactically), the manga has a series of one off low stakes stories that lead up to the revelation that King Enma had been brainwashing demons and unleashing them on the human world to help pad his rate of solving cases against criminals. Despite what is implied by the rest of the story, demons are apparently normally no more prone to violence than the average human. With this and Yusuke settling down to open a ramen shop, there was no way for the story to possibly continue.
  • What Could Have Been:
    • On one of the DVD commentaries, three out of the four main voice actors admitted they wanted different parts from what they were given. Justin Cook (Yusuke's VA) wanted to be Kurama, Chuck Huber (Hiei's VA) wanted to be Yusuke, Christopher Sabat (Kuwabara's VA) wanted to be Hiei, while John Burgmeier (Kurama's VA) didn't admit that he wanted any particular part. If this were the actual cast and Burgmeier was still part of the main four, he would have been left with Kuwabara.
      • Also, Funimation beat AnimEigo for the US license to the TV series. Supposedly, AnimEigo only planned on releasing the series straight-to-DVD, and possibly sub-only. Them letting Funimation take the license was an early sign of the company scaling-down. In the end, Funimation's more ambitious plans for Yu Yu Hakusho ended up paying off, with the series' successful run on Adult Swim and Toonami, along with the merchandising deals.
    • Originally Hiei was introduced as a one-off villain who Yusuke would defeat and be done with. However, Hiei proved to be incredibly popular, so he was kept onboard for the rest of the series. This ended up causing some plot issues however with the Jigan Eye and his demonic form, so the demonic form was removed and never reappeared, while the Jigan Eye had to be altered a bit later on as well.
    • Yusuke was going to go through an arc that deconstructs his character. Togashi later refit it for Hunter × Hunter during the Chimera Ant Arc. Judging by that comment, some believe it was supposed to occur after Genkai's death.
  • The Wiki Rule: This one and this one, although the former is much better.
  • There is a small short comic that Togashi only gave out to a handful of people. It contains genderbent Hiei and Kurama and a sketch of Kurama and Karasu as a couple, among several other author's notes.

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