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Original content (this page; 2000)
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Additional content (2003-12)
The Idiot's Guide to Pokémon...
r 'Parent's and/or Teacher's, as the case may be. For parents who have already been brainwashed into hating Pokémon by stereotypes, the media, etc... having to accompany their kids in seeing "Pokémon: the First Movie" in 1999 was more than just seeing a movie they didn't like. I mean, how does a person expect to know what's going on when they go to a movie based on a TV series never having seen the show and have to spend half the film just trying to figure out which kid is Ash? Bet that "Mary & Rhoda"¹ movie doesn't make much sense either if you've never seen their TV shows, right? And obviously, someone's not going to enjoy a movie if they're sitting there going over some critic's one-sided review in their head instead of listening to the story for themselves; the only real criticism being that the edited, Americanized U.S. version of "Mewtwo Strikes Back" was likely the only representation of Pokémon that parents experienced. For fans, "Mewtwo Strikes Back" was a great movie (and I really mean it having since seen the original Japanese version)...for the rest of the audience, Mewtwo was the Pokémon who said more than just its name.
While nowadays that prejudice may hopefully be a thing of the past, I am still surprised to meet up with parents who will admit they don't know anything about Pokémon while their kids are choosing a toy or receiving a Mystery Gift. Offering a friendly word of advice, I am often asked (as I quietly cringe at their mispronunciation of "Pokémon", even in the era of Black & White) how I know so much, and speaking not only for Pokémon, I realize what would surprise me even more is meeting a parent who actually made the effort to learn a little about their children's interests, rather than relying on the help of a stranger.
ven when the fifth (and final nationwide American) Pokémon theatrical release opened ("Pokémon Heroes", 2003), Pokémon, unfortunately, was still being slammed, written off, and misinterpreted by people who still just don't get it. Personally, I believe that movie critics don't have the right to (or enough knowledge, plus being solely based on 4Kids' poor 'translations' at the time) to judge Pokémon, or any other films based on established (television) series (Star Trek fans had good reason for not liking "Nemesis" - the clone didn't even look like a young Picard [as seen in "Tapestry"]). While fans are watching characters they 'invite into their living rooms' day after day, critics will merely be seeing the fifth installment in a multi-part series (sixth, actually; if you include the made-for-TV feature "Mewtwo Returns", the sequel to the first Pokémon film, was released directly onto video/DVD in the U.S.) - a smart trend ever since, and despite Pokémon's resurgence in mainstream popularity which got some fans hoping that the highly-anticipated twelfth movie "Arceus and the Jewel of Life" (2009) would also mean the epic return to U.S. theaters, instead its quiet CN debut (following that of previous recent films) prior to the DVD release remains a safer alternative to
the fates mentioned above - talk about 'prying eyes' and 'harsh judgment'²!
...Though based on the huge turnouts for the private, limited showings of "Zoroark: Master of Illusions" [movie 13] at the Black & White mall tour , especially following the unauthorized cut beginning on CN, none of that can compare to the thrill of seeing a Pokémon movie on the big screen again!
ika! Pika! Pika! Again, on the issue of "talking animals", oddly enough, the one thing that seems to redeem Pokémon in one instance is their downfall in others. Those cute sounds based on each Pokémon's name that fans find adorable often bother parents, who seem to forget that Pokémon are the equivalent to animals³ in our world, and got annoyed when Pikachu said only "pika pika pika" for an entire movie (again, that's all they likely ever saw). Although ask anyone who grew up watching Lassie, who has been quite successful for almost 70 years uttering nothing but "bark bark bark"!. Furthermore, recalling the gross and/or anti-cute animals (non-speaking or otherwise) that won out in the 1990s (it's also ironic how you never hear adults complaining about a CGI-animal voiced by a wiseass celeb), I'm not surprised by the rumors of less cute, more beefed up-looking pocket monsters initially suggested for American audiences that have recently surfaced. Pokémon instead deserves full credit for not only bringing back "cute", but for also striking a perfect balance between appearance, action, personality, humor, and drama that began with a bright-eyed yellow mouse and its powerful electric attacks.
|Text and artwork copyright © 2000-2013 by Kimberly (RageOfInnocence)
Pokémon © Satoshi Tajiri, Nintendo/Creatures, Inc./Game Freak, The Pokémon Company International
The beautiful screenshots of Ash, Pikachu, and their friends and Pokémon are from various themes and episodes from Pokémon
(Kanto/Orange Islands/Johto series), Advanced Generation, Diamond & Pearl, and Best Wishes!/Black & White
Dream Valley | Oak Branch Woods | We All Live in a Pokémon World | Kimberly's Attic