Anime Underground

18 Times Yu-Gi-Oh! Was Censored To Be More Palatable For Sensitive Audiences

Yu-Gi-Oh! has gotten more critical censorship than almost other anime that made its way overseas. Completely redirected and rebranded by 4Kids Entertainment as a kids' show about merchandisable trading cards, the watered-down content American television watchers were exposed to basically made Yu-Gi-Oh! an entirely different anime. With Yu-Gi-Oh! censored in America, like Sailor Moon before it, every ounce of mature content, gore, skin, and even entire seasons were deemed inappropriate.  

Unfortunately, these compelling elements had to be abandoned to make the series a more wholesome experience for Western children. Poor Yugi and friends never stood a chance as soon as executives figured out that making trading cards is basically like printing money. Yu-Gi-Oh! eventually made it to the long list of anime censored in the US, leaving audiences with a Frankensteined hybrid of psychologically horrifying, occult Japanese anime and children's daytime TV.