Posted on 2 May 2006 with categories: Anime Reviews, Law of Ueki



Say hello to the anime with the most creative battles ever. We finally have a series which understands that strategy-based battles are so much better than power-based battles. At least, most of the time.

The premisse is simple: we have this God, who organizes a tournament in order to decide his successor. 100 middle schoolers are picked, and given a power. Then they have to fight each other, and the last one standing wins. The good part: most of these powers make no sense at all. They’re certainly not the thing you’d expect. I’m referring to the power to change trash into trees, tomatoes into magma, bamboo into scissors and a ring into a rocket. And these are just the least original of the bunch. There also is a limit to each of these powers, as in a condition that has to be fulfilled before you can use it. Think of the ability of changing water into fire if you put it in your mouth, the ability to change towels into steel if you hold your breath and many more. When these are used in battle, the results become incredible.

It was really clear that the creators put all of their creativity in these battles. Some of them truly turned into something memorable, as you will have no idea what’s going to happen, or how the antagonists will be defeated. It’s also great that a great deal of humor was put into these battles, and somehow the creators managed to find the perfect combination between comedy and action.

The first thirteen episodes of the series contain either amazingly funny battles, or just a couple of scenes you just need to sit through a bit. Though that may be tedious, the awesome episodes are definately worth it. The six episodes afterwards, are horribly creative, and touching as well. In these episodes, Ueki shows his best side, and the bad guys just keep getting better and better.

The next six episodes, especially the first bunch, are amazing. We get to see some great duels, which contain the best strategies of the series, as the side-characters of the show show off their best. The six episodes afterwards (27-32, if you lost count) follow with a short intermezzo. Nothing special or worthwile happens here, though. There are some funny moments, but these were certainly not as good as the previous ones.

The series suffers a huge blow around episode 32 and 33. These were horrible examples of directions at which you should never go, and the se/ries went there. At this point, it almost made me give up the show. Luckily, in the episodes following, the show manages to steadily pick up, until episode 38. From this point on, The Law of Ueki really begins to shine. We get to see the best fights ever, perfectly combining comedy and action into one gigantic heap of awesomeness. Especially when the side-characters come into the spotlight, the show just switches from one amazing scene to another.

The awesomeness continues until episode 43. After this, the show loses its shine, and eventually manages to produce a decent ending. These last episodes were better than you expect, though they just weren’t on the same level as the previous episodes.

The art of the characters looks a bit different than usual. The unevennes of the faces is heavily accentuated, and every scratch becomes visible. I like this, it’s also what originally turned me on to keep watching the series, although as the series progresses, you become used to this. The backgrounds are a very good piece of art. Although the same ones are used for a couple of episodes after each other, this doesn’t really destroy that effect, it only makes it better. The music, although nothing extraordinary, it used to its full extend. It makes the dramatic scenes so worthwile, and adds even more to the great battles.

Overall, any action fan will surely just love this anime, or if you’re just in for a couple of good laughs, then I really recommend this anime.

Final Rating: 90/100

15 Responses

  1. Chiro-kun says:

    Yeah Law of Ueki kicks ass! The powers are just weird, wacky and awesome!

  2. butchie says:

    THis series is the best

  3. silverboy says:

    this series is too short…what ever,i like their awesome abilities…^^

  4. Moki says:

    omgosh I love law of ueki TTwTT

    my fave anime so far.

  5. Shiela says:

    Astig talaga ng Law of Ueki!!!!!!! It rocks!!!!!

  6. ryvrdrgn14 says:

    The entire series was great and it had its share of twists and tactical battles which many shows these days lack. It always helps when characters don’t go above a certain power level afterall. ^_^

  7. saYaka'S says:

    I love The law of Ueki!!!!! I love ueki! =D

  8. Freddie M. Idul says:

    wow! it’s so nice!,, i hope that it has a book 2

  9. kurai ikami laurize says:

    ang ganda tlaga nang law of ueki…pwedeng ipagpalit sa naruto!

  10. wall_man says:

    Actually, I really didn’t like it that much. It was full of cliches and the story was kinda dumb.
    1. How is it remotely responsible to let children from another world fight each other with magical super-powers just to decide the next ruler instead of having an election or something?
    2. Some powers are just ridiculously strong.
    These are kinda forgivable because it is a short anime.

  11. Julian says:

    This is a type of cheese that you can call “good cheese” =)

  12. Nice anime. I love to see this as soon as possible. Keep it up your updates as well.

  13. spectre says:

    i must say it is one of my favorite anime’s
    love the part that the god is elected like a govt system
    fightings are very strategy based exactly like i like it

  14. Tan-Tan says:

    Uhuhuhu why didn’t they make use of Robert at the second half =( he had so much potential!

  15. CW says:

    I love that it was purely character-driven. Things don’t just happen because they need to, as in the case of so many textbook shonen series, again following in DBZ’s wake, no, everything important that happens is shown to have been set up and the story is actually very tightly weaved.

    That is damn impressive to see in anime these days, let alone in the shonen genre, where 90% of it is assembly line DBZ-lite trash.

    From the art style, I thought it was going to be as horrible as One Piece, Bleach, AND Naruto combined… but luckily, I was very pleasantly surprised.

    Recommended for sure.

    Just avoid the english dub, please.

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  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:30 AM)
    anyways, Shaft’s pretty much built on that “stagnating” style, it’d be like telling Apple to stop being UI-focused and open their walled garden up and be more like Android. Change is only desired when you don’t like something.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:24 AM)
    oh, when I said “more or less the same,” I meant that it’s easy to tell when they did something because you can recognize their trademarks from other works.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:22 AM)
    You’re not going to see any sudden, steep climbs of improvement, they’re already past that stage and into the subtleties of mastery.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:22 AM)
    They all have a style that’s more or less the same. It improves, but it’s only noticeable if you follow them closely. We’re talking about pros that are getting better at what they do, not just in purely visual means, but output efficiency, layout design, frame rate control, etc, while still trying to keep two subjects happy: their dedicated audience and themselves.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:19 AM)
    and I still don’t understand “stagnating.” It still sounds like “more of the same old, just in different strokes” which would refer to progressing consistency. Hiroyuki Imaishi, Mitsuo Iso, Masaaki Yuasa, Yo Yoshinari, Masahiro Ando, hell, let’s even throw in Shinichiro Watanabe.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:17 AM)
    even without the edits, they employ a nice modern style, focusing on sharp, sleek designs with lots of symmetry and emphasis on form. “detail” is exactly what I think when I see their architecture and environments just spiraling with mathematical forms and stylized lighting.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:09 AM)
    @K-Off as for Shaft’s backgrounds, Rebellion is enough to blow any viewer’s mind, new or veteran. Their TV series undergo tons of BD edits (as sites like Sankaku Complex will lovingly detail with hundreds of screenshot comparisons). Granted many of them can seem insignificant, but that’s attention to detail, no mistake, even if it’s unnecessary attention lol.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:04 AM)
    In either case, South Korea doesn’t have strong enough support for the animation industry to launch series of their own (else they’d probably go through everything Naver has). Not much point when dramas and games are more popular, thus draw in more money, and people can get their anime fix from Japan. Although with more global successes, it seems like there’s some rumbling in the industry, but likely most of these series are going to be like weekend morning offerings in the US.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 10:01 AM)
    Although that could also be because of the shifting to digital procurement of media.
  • Jalapeno Bagel
    (Wednesday, Apr 23. 2014 09:59 AM)
    @K-Off just like in the US or even in motherland Japan, the hardcore anime communities are a small percentage of the overall population. I said stigma, but it’s not solely present in Korea. Animation in general is usually aimed at a younger audience. You could even say animation is somewhat suffering in the US, compared to perhaps back a decade ago when animated cartoons were filling timeslots to the brim.

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