Monday, April 27, 2020

Pokemon Origins: It's About Time

After mentioning Pokemon Origins in a recent post I figured I should probably make a proper statement on it and stop beating around the bush.

Pokemon Origins is awesome.

Let's unpack that.

The Story

Pokemon Origins: Wolverine diverts from the Ash Ketchum story line to instead focus on Red, a 10 year old boy about to embark on his Pokemon journey. He chooses his first Pokemon, a Charmander and...

Well honestly if  you played Pokemon Red or Blue back in the day and didn't change your or your opponents names that's pretty much the story. As far as the series is concerned, there's only 151 Pokemon and you gotta catch em' all while remaining in the only region in the world, Kanto. The only divergence from the original games is the addition of mega evolution, introduced in Pokemon X and Y, but we'll get to that.

The Pokemon We Deserved

If you've watched any of the first season of the adventures of Ash Ketchum, world's worst Pokemon trainer, you may find that your nostalgia goggles are just not strong enough to remember why you spent a part of your childhood wearing Pikachu briefs. The show is dated for adults as the characters are just not that interesting, and their monster-of-the-week formula, or in this case pocket-monster-of-the-week, is, let's face it, a commercial for the toys. Agreed you do get the occasional gag with Psyduck or Team Rocket, and the show still has a few heartwarming moments to pull out of its sleeve, but in general as an adult it's just not that watchable.

For me the biggest reason for this is that the show pads itself out like it's trying to imitate Dragonball Z, with at least 7/10 episodes being filler. As it's been noted what was a 5 minute journey in the game took Ash well over 20 episodes with sleepovers to make the trip. Ash himself is a lot like Harry Potter, where nobody wants to actually be him they just want to live in his world and do what he does only competently.

Red on the other hand is a Pokemon trainer we can get behind. He's not perfect but his struggles make him all the more relatable as he tries to earn the title of Pokemon master. The show is only four episodes long which is as long as it needs to be. It tells the story while letting us see all the epic moments we imagined in our heads as we stared at our Gameboys going on our own journey.

The Verdict

Pokemon Origins: Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood is in my humble opinion the best piece of non-video game media to come out of this franchise. It tells us a story, gives us the grandeur we wanted. Check it out on Amazon Prime if you get the chance, believe me, you won't regret it.


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