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Old 12-08-2011, 03:48 PM   #1
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Analysis on the state of the anime

Kind of interested in sparking a discussion about the anime and it's future after seeing this depressing image on reddit yesterday.

I seem to recall that back when Black and White were first airing on TV in Japan, some of the producers were discussing the future of the show, and I believe a few of the things they mentioned were that a. Misty most likely wasn't coming back because the show has moved on without her, and most of the current audience wouldn't know who she is, and b. the Black and White saga in Unova would be one of the shortest in the Pokemon series. Now, I can't remember perfectly, but I thought I read something about the anime itself beginning to wind down, but maybe not.

The show can't go on forever, can it? Where will it go? Does canon essentially not matter anymore, aside from the Pokemon Ash has caught? Brock and Misty are gone, and I highly doubt either of them will ever be back save mayhaps a cameo. It just seems like the anime turned into a clusterfuck of repetitiveness, and all care for a good story was thrown out the window.

Even when I was young and watching, I'd hoped that maybe Ash would have continued to age during his travels, much like other shows do and the writers are doing for Adventure Time, but they still expect us to believe that even though significant dates such as anniversaries and birthdays had been mentioned in the past, and having traveled 4 1/2 regions, plus one of those regions a second time, that he's still ten.

Now, my knowledge on the anime only extends up to the point where the voice actors in the dub swap out due to 4kids selling it, and more recently the first dozen episodes of Black and White (which admittedly isn't horrible, and definitely a step up in quality from past Pokemon content, but not anything special, either), so I can't exactly say I'm the brightest when it comes to Pokemon arguments, I guess.

Anyway, I guess I saw that and it just made me really think about the anime's length and how canon really doesn't seem important for anything prior to a new region, almost as if it's always a soft reset.

Someone on reddit had this to say about Ash replacing his ever so important hat that he treasured in the first season:

I assume that what it was meant to represent was Ash putting his past behind him.

To put an even sadder spin on it: Everything that had meaning to him he had accomplished; all the friends he had left him as if the only thing he had been good for was the epic journey to becoming a pokemon master. His debts to misty, brock, and his pokemon were paid and his lifelong rival had simply moved on. Perhaps he felt as if all meaning to his life had just suddenly vanished as everything he was familiar with had changed so suddenly. He had nothing more to prove and no traveling friends to impress/maintain. All that awaited him was an empty bed, a couple of badges, a fancy title to show for his long and arduous journey, and a now unfamiliar and uncomfortable life.

Instead of settling in, he struck out again -- fleeing from the mundanity of the life awaiting him; scared of its implications and emptiness. This time his journey less of an epic conflict against the world and more of a pensive self-paced journey -- a journey that he would take as long as he could find any meaning to give to it.

Wearing his old clothes may have simply reminded him too much of the world he had lost. They would've carried too much memory and emotional weight. Behind his pokemon master mask after his return to pallet town may simply lie gritted teeth, bitter tears, and a desperate yearning to rekindle the emotions and adventures he had before.

But that's just my interpretation. It's just a silly kid's show, right? :P
What's going to happen? Does the past of the show matter? Is it even about becoming a "Pokemon Master" anymore? Does the show even matter anymore, or has it more than ever just become a method to sell toys and games (as if that wasn't always part of it's purpose anyway)?

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Old 12-08-2011, 04:13 PM   #2
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Different people have different theories. Some people I know believe that the writers aren't given enough credit and that they've been planning all this time to show Ash's gradual evolution from PokéChump to PokéChamp by having him, bit by bit and region by region, inch his way closer to League Champion. Other people I know believe that each new region effectively represents a hard reset, that Ash is Ash only in name and looks, and that the show is going to keep spinning its wheels until the day comes when ShoPro shuts their doors and turns off the lights for good because no one pays for Pokemon anymore. Who's right? I dunno.

But I will say this: they fucked up big time imo by not retiring Ash after Kanto. That's just my opinion. Even if it would have arguably been very stupid to have had Ash win the League after only a year of travels, and even if it would have arguably been even worse to have had him not win and to then just end his story right there, I feel like Ash should have always been what we saw him as -- Red in TV form -- and that, once Johto came, we should have met an entirely new team. Pokémon is now more or less "stuck," if you will. They're boxed in. They have to have Ash and Pikachu be the perma-stars of the show. Because now, after ten-odd years of doing it, it'd just be too weird to suddenly give them the boot and bring in somebody new while the franchise overall is still going strong. But I think it's a real shame and, to be honest, I'm not sure if Pokemon will ever be done justice until our grandkids' time. Why do I say that? Because: it probably won't be until our grandkids' time that Pokemon is "re-envisioned" the way that Thundercats is being done right now or the way that My Little Pony is being done, etc. If you have a child today, I'm saying, that child will probably be ~20 to 30 years old before we could hope to see a Pokemon reboot. But I think that until we get such a reboot, the franchise is never going to have the show it could have had. The show it should have had.
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Old 12-08-2011, 07:38 PM   #3
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The writing was on the wall for Ash to win Indigo - the Kanto region was always hinted to have deep flaws, and Ash had a lot of "signs" he was a special trainer, with a very special Pikachu. It could have very easily worked out so the anime wouldn't be in this perpetuating state of undeath by trotting out Ash all the time.

Though, Talon, I disagree that Ash shouldn't have seen Johto. What we saw of Johto early on was very promising - Ash had only RYB Pokemon but the Johto trainers had GSC Pokemon alongside high-level Kanto Pokemon, creating a unique challenge for the legendary conqueror of Orange to adapt and win. I mean, Faulkner had a berserk Pigeot that beat up Ash's Charizard, something his pushover game version wouldn't dare have. Johto could easily have been an intriguing second life for Ash, and could have corrected for his loss in Kanto narrative wise.

It ended very, very poorly, but for me, it jumped the shark around when the Whitney filler appeared.
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Old 12-09-2011, 08:58 PM   #4
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I'll never get the crying over Ash not getting replaced. No ones pining for the main character of any other super long running series to get lost! It'd be nice if his female companion for the generation were elevated up to true co-lead character status but since its a show mostly aimed at boys it won't happen. What needs ta be done now is dropping the whole "fresh start" angle. It was great the first couple times it was done but now??

Let Ash keep using his old PKMN while gradually catching and training up new ones ala Johto. Except have trainers on his level to battle instead of people who just got their very first PKMN. Throw in some comment about Gym Leaders having many sets of PKMN to challenge trainers of all skill level or something. Going back to level 1 is just tiresome.
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Old 01-20-2012, 05:46 AM   #5
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I like collecting subbed eppys, but Im still more of a fan of the Raikou group of Johto
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Old 02-21-2012, 05:57 PM   #6
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Eh, I think the Anime got stale at about the Battle Frontier.
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