Yu-Gi-Oh: The Abridged Series

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Fanwork
Title: Yu-Gi-Oh: The Abridged Series
Creator: Little Kuriboh
Date(s): July 2006-present
Medium: video (parody fan-dub)
Fandom: Yu-Gi-Oh
External Links: Yu-Gi-Oh: The Abridged Series
Little Kuriboh's Youtube.com channel
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Yu-Gi-Oh: The Abridged Series is a parody fan-dub of the anime series Yu-Gi-Oh, written and performed by Little Kuriboh impersonating the various voices in the 4Kids dub, "abridging" every episode (or multiple episodes at once) to 4-6 minute humorous parodies. The series is ongoing; as of January, 2009 it is 31 episodes long, plus Abridged versions of two movies, the first two episodes of Cr@psule Monsters (parodying YGO: Capsule Monsters) and various other shorts.

History

Little Kuriboh posted a couple short humor parody videos on the YGO comm Play the Damn Card, Already in July, 2006 [1] before posting the first episode of YGO Abridged, under the header "Condensed Yu-Gi-Oh", stating, "Ever feel like watching Yu-Gi-Oh, but you're in too much of a hurry to watch an entire twenty-two minute episode? Well, here's what it would be like if the show lasted a mere four minutes. Apparently there'd be a lot less dueling and a lot more rampant confusion."[2].

The first episode was well received, and Little Kuriboh proceeded to post more episodes on an erratically weekly basis, on Play the Damn Card and his own livejournal. The series started to gain a following on Livejournal and Youtube, popularity spreading by word of mouth on anime forums and blogs. Less than three weeks after the first episode was posted, Little Kuriboh's Youtube account had received over 15,000 hits.[3] Fans began making icons[4] and fanart[5] for the Abridged Series. By October 2006 there were "imposter videos" showing up on Youtube [6]. As of January 2009, Little Kuriboh's livejournal is friended by over 1,600 users[7], and his current Youtube channel has almost 6,000 subscribers.[8]

In July 2007 the Yu-Gi-Oh: TAS Official Website went public[9], with downloads of all the episodes, and later torrents.

Audience Response

YGO:TAS became a minor internet phenomenon for a time, with many fans who had never seen the original Yu-Gi-Oh series, or didn't like the original, still finding the Abridged version hilarious.[10] While much of YGO:TAS's humor does parody the YGO anime itself, many of the jokes are from a wide variety of sources, anything from Monty Python to '80s rock to internet memes, so are accessible to anyone. Reflecting this popularity, other Abridged anime series were developed, unrelated to Little Kuriboh but using the Abridged name and format with his blessing[11], including Naruto The Abridged Series and Berserk The Abridged Series.

YGO:TAS spawned a few catch-phrases, including Kaiba's "Screw the rules, I have money!" and Bandit Keith's "In America!" leading some fans to start watching the series just to figure out what the heck their friends were quoting. As a parody, the Abridged Series does have many jokes that are fandom-specific, and especially influenced by the "Play the Damn Card, Already!" comm, including Bakura's fangirls, and references to popular yaoi pairings in the fandom, particularly Yami/Yugi. The extremely sarcastic attitude YGO: TAS takes toward the card game the anime is supposed to center around, constantly pointing out the absurdity of epic battles based on a "children's card game," is also a common attitude on Play the Damn Card (and among quite a few other fans, who often are vaguely embarrassed to be so interested in a kid's show.)

Apparently what goes around comes around, because just as Little Kuriboh fans on the original dub, so do the dub voice actors apparently fan on YGO Abridged. At Youmacon '08, when asked what his favorite line for his character was, Wayne Grayson (VA for Joey Wheeler) responded "Brooklyn RAGE!" - one of Joey's catchphrases in YGO: TAS.[12]

Copyright Issues

YSO:TAS was originally posted on Youtube; however, the videos were repeatedly flagged and removed for terms of use violations.[13] As the videos were parody, they ought to have been protected under Fair Use law, and many fans protested the removal [14]. At first, the protests went unheeded, and LittleKuriboh's original Youtube account was taken down when he reposted the removed vids. Later, other Abridged series were posted on Youtube and not removed, and YGO:TAS is now there as well; it's not clear whether this is due to a change in Youtube policies, or because 4Kids is not defending their copyright as belligerently.

As of January, 2009, YGO:TAS is available on Little Kuriboh's current Youtube channel, CardGamesFTW, created on March 20, 2008.

References

  1. playthedamncard:Yami Issues An Apology 2006-07-08, playthedamncard:Meatwad Loves Yu-Gi-Oh! 2006-07-12 (accessed 1/2009)
  2. playthedamncard: Condensed Yu-Gi-Oh posted by littlekuriboh, 2006-07-14 (accessed 1/2009)
  3. littlekuriboh: Quandary 28-7-2006 (Accessed 1/2009)
  4. playthedamncard: My Tribute To Little Kuriboh... posted by jh4e, 2006-10-30 (accessed 1/2009)
  5. littlekuriboh: Crazy Fanart Goodness 9-7-2007 (accessed 1/2009)
  6. "Yeah, ignore all the random imposter videos floating around on YouTube. Somebody's been masquerading as yours truly, and is posting fake episodes all over the place. Not good." playthedamncard: The REAL Abridged Series, 2006-10-23 (accessed 1/2009)
  7. Friend of (1684) littlekuriboh livejournal profile (accessed 1/2009)
  8. Subscribers: 5,918 Youtube: LittleKuriboh (accessed 1/2009)
  9. littlekuriboh: Drumroll please... 16-7-2007 (accessed 1/2009)
  10. "Heck, I've never even seen Yu-Gi-Oh, and I think the Abridged is hilarious." --Julia-the-Great, 2008, Minitokyo Forums (accessed 1/2009)
  11. "A lot of people on YouTube have been asking me for permission to do their own "Abridged Series" based on other popular 'toons. I don't really think they need my permission, but I give it to them anyways." littlekuriboh: I, Koshi Rikdo, Hereby Give My Permission... 1-11-2006 (accessed 1/2009)
  12. Wayne Grayson quotes Yu-Gi-Oh Abridged posted by Cyberlink420, November 02, 2008 (accessed 1/2009)
  13. "So it's come to my attention that YouTube finally took notice and ended up removing episode one of the Abridged Series from their archives." littlekuriboh: *miffed* 8-3-2007 (accessed 1/2009)
  14. see: "A petition to bring back YuGiOh: The Abridged Series, as it was stabbitty stabbed by the Youtube staff" YuGiOh: The Abridged Series PETITION! posted by Mittopotahis, March 08, 2007 (accessed 1/2009)