Throwback Thursdays: Pokémon: The First Movie

pokemon_the_first_movieSummer is upon us, and that means driving around with music blasting and windows down. My car doesn’t have an AUX jack, so I have to go a little bit old-school by digging old CDs out or burning new ones, and one of my favorite things to drive to is my copy of the Pokémon: The First Movie soundtrack. I was listening to it the other day when I realized I had this post to write, and it was a quick jump from there to throw this Thursday back to the source: Pokémon: The First Movie.

After a brief scrap with and some deeply worrying grinding noises from my old VCR, I got our old, much-loved copy of this 1998 movie to start up. Even the trailers were a blast from the past—a Mary-Kate and Ashley movie, a Batman Beyond straight-to-VHS offering, and even an ad for the soundtrack. The movie itself doesn’t begin right away after that—rather there’s the brief and silly short Pikachu’s Vacation.

Then, finally, we get to the good stuff.

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Nostalgia as a Driving Force

In recent years, nostalgia has been a driving force in the geek industry. Reboots, remakes, and old properties have dominated sales to a considerable degree. This is interesting, but a lot has already been said about why we feel nostalgia (and here, via Science Friday). I want to focus more on how this effect is important.

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Did You Geek Out This April Fools’ Day?

Luce: Another April Fools’ Day has come and gone, and I’ve listened to Never Gonna Give You Up approximately way too many times since then. Fortunately, there were some awesome pranks out there aside from endless song repetitions, and I’d love to share my favorites with you.

Obviously I had to mention this one. Google has a history of amazing April Fools’ pranks, but god, couldn’t this one have been true? Maybe I’ve just watched way too much Twitch Plays Pokémon, but I swear my heart did a little pokéjig of its own when I saw this. They even put all the Pokémon in geographically viable locations! Someday augmented reality will actually become a viable part of games, and when that happens, Pokémon has got to be the first game they make—but until then, at least I can become a phone Pokémon Master.

I may have fallen out of love with Supernatural, but Castiel will always and forever be my favorite character, especially since they brutally killed off Kevin Tran. (Still not over it.) That’s why this image from troll master Orlando Jones was simultaneously amazing and heartbreaking. Castiel and Captain Irving teaming up to fight zombies and snark at each other? Sign me up. I mean, a few months back, Supernatural’s Robbie Thompson even wrote a faux crossover script with Almost Human, Sleepy Hollow, and Supernatural, so that’s basically SuperSleepy, right? What is stopping Cas from breaking Irving out of jail for real and then swooping off together to complain about the respective protagonists of their shows? Nothing, that’s what. Nothing except the cold hard slap of reality.

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A Newer, Shinier, Funnier Pokémon World

Try as I might, dear readers, I have yet to unhook myself from Pokémon X. So I’m going to continue to subject you to news on the subject until I get tired of it or find something else to write about. First, I mentioned in a previous post that Nintendo would be releasing a fix for the Lumiose City save bug. Il est arrivé. You may sound your individual trumpets or vuvuzelas in celebration.

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A New Shiny Pokémon World

Gentle readers,

We talked about Pokémon a little bit recently. If for some reason you live under a rock, the 6th generation of Pocket Monsters’ games was released just a few weeks ago. If you, like me, are the lowest kind of nerd (besides Warhammer 40k players), you might have already played your way through the games. Let me say again how refreshing it is that the Fire-type starter doesn’t evolve into Fire/Fighting.

The Fire/Psychic combination is ideal to take advantage of a high special attack, a refreshing change from having to try split power moves between the Physical and Special categories. In short, I’ve been giggling like a kindergartener as my Delphox and I pyrokinesis our way across Kalos. This is just one of a few big changes that Gen6 brought with it. There’s also the new Fairy type, introduced as a balance for the Dragon-type (which, yes, 5 generations since Dragonite, still needs balancing), featuring a couple of old favorites were previously Normal-types like Clefable and the new Legendary, Xerneas (who will become important later).

Masahiro-sakuraiAll this to say nothing of Sky Battles, which only Pokémon that can fly or levitate may enter, or unprecedented trainer customization. There’s a new feature called PokéMon-Amie (get it?) that allows the player to pet and interact with their Pokémon. They’ve also widened and upgraded the internet-based Player Search System so you can trade and battle players all over the world. It’s a new shiny Pokémon world and I would like to take this opportunity to tell every hater who dismissed Pokémon as a fad in the 90s that they may, in fact, suck it. I apologize for the incomprehensible Pokéspeak, but I’m unaware of any other way to convey my excitement. Anyway, as I said, there’ve been some important Pokéhappenings. Masahiro Sakurai, the creator of Super Smash Bros. uploaded this image to the games official page:

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Captioned as “a photo taken during game development,” it’s pretty clearly the back of Xerneas’ head. This seems like strong indication that the Legendary Fairy (not to be confused with the Great Fairy) will be present in Super Smash Brothers for the WII U and 3DS. I suppose it’s possible that Xerneas might just be a PokéBall summon, but I doubt that because no one would actually be that cruel, right? So, that’s a thing that fans of Pokémon and SSB alike can get excited for.

The second little bit of news but one of primary import to any Pokémon players who might read this blog, Nintendo has confirmed that there is a savegame bug in Lumiose City, and that they will be releasing a downloadable fix to this problem. If your save has been rendered inaccessible by this bug, the fix should also restore your previous save file. Good news all around!

It’s an exciting time, I think, for the Pokémon franchise. With all sorts of new features, Nintendo has changed the ways in which players interact with the game. There’s a library of over 700 Pokémon which is crazy if you’ve been playing since the original hundred and fifty, and the new games were so anticipated that consumes bought 4 million copies in the first two days. It’s a good time to be a PokéFreak, I guess.

The Pokémon Problem

When I was younger, I loved Pokémon. I loved the show. I loved the video games. I loved the trading cards, both as collectibles and as a game.

pokemon-logoWhen I got older, I broke out the old Game Boy and started Pokémon: Gold again.

I got extremely upset when I realized that I was taking part in a country-sanctioned animal-fighting league.

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Oh, My Pop Culture Deity: The Gods Do My Bidding!

I’ve got too much Yu-Gi-Oh! on the brain, you guys. It’s seriously impacting my life. So if you do not have any great love for the series, this post is not for you. Sorry for not being sorry about it. But if you aren’t running away, stay put! This post is going places. Possibly spoilery places. Continue reading