CW Network and 4Kids Bring the Next Chapter of Duel Monsters
It’s been several years since Yugi Mutou strapped on his Duel Disk and played Duel Monsters in Domino City, and the years have not been kind to either Domino City or to Duel Monsters. A new chapter in the Duel Monsters saga has begun, and 4Kids with the CW Network has brought it to North American shores.
Introducing Turbo Duels and Duel Runners
Domino City is now called New Domino City, and only the rich can live within the city limits. The poorer classes live outside in the slums, called the “Satellite.” Playing Duel Monsters is still incredibly popular, but it has become a rich man’s sport and a poor boy’s dream. Those who live in the Satellite are not even allowed to own a deck of Duel Monster cards.
The game of Duel Monsters has changed a little bit as well. The duels are still played with the original Duel Disk idea that Kaiba formulated, and the occasional duel on the street still employs these Disks. But the Duel Disks are also used in the new and more popular spectator version of dueling: Turbo Duels. These duels are played while the duelists race motorcycles equipped with Duel Disks, called Duel Runners.
The Turbo Duel rules seem about the same: each duelist has a finite number of hit points, and whoever reaches zero loses the duel. While on a Duel Runner, the duelist’s bike comes to a screeching halt, so the winner wins the race.
These duels typically occur in a Turbo Duel arena, but they can happen anywhere on the street, provided that a duelist has a Turbo Card to activate the arena. Viewers must suspend their disbelief or sense of reality when it comes to these duels, or they will wonder how the duelists can drive while dueling or how do they avoid other traffic or pedestrians.
Same Yu-Gi-Oh! Formula
Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s may have different characters and a different story, but the dueling formula is the exact same as the original series. One of the protagonists starts a duel, he gets close to losing, then he pulls out a trump card and makes an incredible comeback for the win. With each move made, the duelists provide over the top colour commentary on their strategies and the cards’ abilities. The protagonist’s friends watch in awe during the duel, cheering on their comrade and gasping in disbelief at some of the plays.
Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s Is Not for Everyone
Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s story stands alone, so one does not have to have seen the previous Yu-Gi-Oh! series to pick up and understand this one. However, it is most helpful to have seen at least one of them to understand the background history and fanaticism about Duel Monsters. Most likely, those
who have never seen an Yu-Gi-Oh! instalment will get confused or bored with the Duel Monsters obsession and move on to something else.
5D’s is not entirely suitable for kids, even those who have seen either Yu-Gi-Oh! series. The complex, mature story-line and level of violence is geared a bit more for the pre-teen and teenage audience than younger viewers.
Not all Yu-Gi-Oh! fans will enjoy this series either, especially those who remember Tristan proclaiming that in the future, Duel Monsters would be played on motorbikes and Yugi responding that that was the dumbest thing Tristan has ever said. Well Tristan’s prophecy did come true, but Yugi is right; the idea is rather ridiculous and far-fetched, even for an animated TV series.
You can watch this show on the official Yu-Gi-Oh Website here.