One of the first series I really loved and be a part of fandom of was Law of Ueki. But years passed by and I forgotten almost everything that I felt for the series. A simple trip to my favorite anime openings on Youtube drove me back watching it last year, but it was put on halt on my interest in Pretty Cure series.
However, finally I picked it back up and finished it this October, and I’m glad I did.
To put it short; The Law of Ueki, or Ueki no Housoku if you prefers its original Japanese title, is a simple kind of old shonen series. There’s this guy with spiky hair and sense of justice, and he battles bad people who wants to take over the world. The plot goes simple as that. However, what charmed me the most about Ueki back then was these three aspects; the concepts of the powers and the world, the characters, and the humor.
On the first aspect— there are lots of interesting powers in this series, in the concept of turning something into something else. Ueki’s powers are interesting because it turned trashes into trees— a power people who adores nature would love to have.
But then, reliving the series all over again, however, have reminded me that what charmed me wasn’t just the powers, but how the powers were used in battles. Ueki and his trees was one of the examples of it, but I also really adore how Sano use his powers alongside his bright strategies— especially that Sano is a true human unlike the kind of Ueki.
Remembering this, it reminds me that now I am older, I am now able to see the ‘powers’ from other aspects. What makes one strong wasn’t just their super power abilities, but also how it was used. To think of it, I started reading Anagle Mole, another manga by Fukuchi Tsubasa, which have interesting battle concept and characters too, but let’s talk about it someday later.
Oh, I don’t know how to start about the second and third aspect; characters and humor. They were the main reason why it is very easy to get attached to this series with seemingly-childish story line. The characters are mostly middle school students and still childish and fun, which makes this series just as colorful and fun. They each have interesting kind of interaction and rewatching this have made me realize how much I love them just like how I grew with them.
To be honest, despite the titular character, I realized that Ueki’s development went slower than at least Mori is, for me. I felt like I seen more of his (angsty) development in the sequel manga Law of Ueki+, instead of the original anime/manga which shows more to his ‘I want to become stronger’ development than anything. In Plus, he was put in a situation where he would lose his friend any time, which makes more room for development, now that I realize.
…I read Plus in tankuobon format, I don’t feel like searching for screenshots. But one thing for sure is that how I end up remembering about how much I ship UeMori lately, and Plus gave them stronger bond more than anything. And I’m glad that Fukuchi kind of confirmed that they’re married now.As for third aspect or humor, from what I seen Fukuchi Tsubasa always delivers his humor in a pattern of bokke-tsukkomi (typically are Ueki and Mori’s job, oops) with weird faces, and the anime perfectly adapted that. Sometimes a very serious scene is brought in a hilarious manner (Like how Sano’s attack to Anon was brushed off in ‘Please imagine the attack’, lol) I absolutely adore this kind of gags, I sort of wish to be able to make Law of Ueki my reference for humor patterns in my original Light Novel someday later.
To be honest, aside from those three aspects and also how the anime perfectly adapted the manga without cutting too much scenes, I do think that this anime will be nothing special without those aspects. It was too simple, there are some plot holes. But saying it bad points doesn’t mean that it wasn’t fun. It was a fun ride, and it’s a great series for being ‘fun‘ while does having some serious, angsty part but a happy conclusion with a fun upbringing— which recent series seemed to forget just for the sake of angst-fueling (I’m looking at you, KagePro and Madoka).
So what is exactly the point of this review? I don’t know. I just wanted to write how much I loved this series, my feelings of reliving this series all over again and how much I felt nostalgic by it alone. Law of Ueki is an important series in my adolescence, and how I would be glad if people does pick this up back again. It’s a great and fun series.