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Amourshipping Thread V3

Wei1

Active Member
COVID-19. What do you think happened during Pokémon Journeys? Social distancing, zoom meetings, etc. They all became more prominent in our lives since the pandemic. Now, you don't have to physical go to school (or even work). You can just work at home or talk at home. By Pokémon Journeys, video chat is so common that a phone booth is considered alien to Goh.

Obviously, Journeys doesn't have a pandemic but our societies have become more acceptable to online video chatting that it solved many multi-tasking issues. Like Liko with school. Can't stay in school because you're on the run from Explorers but still need your grades? Just get a Rotomphone to take online classes.
Allow me to intervene (and excuse the bad grammar): your example may not be the best one, given the increased rate of suicide attempts during and after the pandemic. Not to mention the increase in school refusal. In short, we know that there has been a very big impact on mental health, especially among children and that zoom, TV, etc. don't seem to have been a good substitute for social relationships.
 

RafaSceptile

Well-Known Member
Allow me to intervene (and excuse the bad grammar): your example may not be the best one, given the increased rate of suicide attempts during and after the pandemic. Not to mention the increase in school refusal. In short, we know that there has been a very big impact on mental health, especially among children and that zoom, TV, etc. don't seem to have been a good substitute for social relationships.
There is an increase in suicide attempts in young people during the pandemic? Yes, but so are COVID-19 related deaths in Young People.
During 2020 alone and in the US, there were estimated 212 estimated excess deaths by suicide (age 0-24), which only explains 1/8th of the 1,698 excess deaths that happened during the same period for the same age group.

We don't even need to talk how bad were the 5,496 excess deaths of 2021 and the 3,619 of 2022. And those were the numbers with measures and restrictions, it could be A LOT worse without them.
 

Wei1

Active Member
There is an increase in suicide attempts in young people during the pandemic? Yes, but so are COVID-19 related deaths in Young People.
During 2020 alone and in the US, there were estimated 212 estimated excess deaths by suicide (age 0-24), which only explains 1/8th of the 1,698 excess deaths that happened during the same period for the same age group.

We don't even need to talk how bad were the 5,496 excess deaths of 2021 and the 3,619 of 2022. And those were the numbers with measures and restrictions, it could be A LOT worse without them.
Yes, that's exactly right. But I was talking about the number of "attempts", not successful suicides (which don't necessarily show a significant increase). You have the right to suffer from drug intoxication or jump from a 4th floor window and survive but your attempt doesn't count in the mortality rate. In my country, for example, there are an estimated 60,000 attempts, but only 9,000 'successes'. As you can see, we run the risk of minimizing things if we base ourselves solely on mortality.
And if your concern was that I was opposed to the distancing measures: no, they were necessary, that's clear! But my answer was more about the question: "what happens when most of the interaction people have is via screens", not "was it better to let people out to preserve their mental health"?
 

Dephender

Gizakawayusu
Staff member
Moderator
Regardless, there's no real-life tie-in between 2020 COVID-19 quarantine separation and Ash's friends not being present in-person during the Master 8 tournament.

Kids all over the world, and especially in Japan, were constantly being bombarded with the message that it's perfectly fine to not be somewhere in person and that video is a completely acceptable substitute. Talking to grandma on Skype instead of going to see her doesn't mean you love her less etc etc. So yeah, Pokemon is probably better off sticking to that message instead of going for a "you should be there in person for people" message at a time the goverment itself was telling kids the exact opposite.
 

Damerdal

[Dam]n h[er] Gan[dal]f!
Did you not see the whole "cannot make it" scenario? If they cannot make it in-person, then TV is the best case scenario. The point is that they are watching Ash no matter what.

My contention is why not? These are characters. They can be written in any way shape or form. The only obstacle is if the VAs are unable to be booked well in advance. If the writers wanted all of Ash’s friends to be present cheering him on in person, then they could have done so.

Regarding this thread specifically, Serena in particular should have been there.

Chloe was defined to be looking for a goal and career, hence why her Eevee was so indecisive of what it wants to evolve into. While Dawn was shown to be a traveling trainer, enjoying any events she came across (and has a personal friendship with Chloe for two episodes). Her goal for the time being can be put aside.

This is just moving the goal posts. Chloe’s search isn’t any less important than Serena already having a fixed goal. Dawn is still actively competing in a Contest circuit. Why are their goals able to be put aside, but not any of the other friends?

Same cannot be said for Serena, who agreed with Lisa's proposition for a Super Contest. Or May and Max, who are also part of Lisa's Super Contest. Brock is shown to be still working as a doctor. And Misty is still shown to be in her Gym. And Delia and Oak have only gone to Kanto and Johto Leagues to root for Ash in person, which implies that distance has been an issue for them.
If Serena can be there for Ash by watching him live and still do her Pokémon Performance at the same time, why wouldn't she? You would have to convince Lisa to bring the Pokémon Performance Contest to Galar for a half-time show to get the same effect.

Once again, Serena was not required to be at a Contest during Ash vs Leon. She was written/animated to be present there. She just as easily could have been written to be like Dawn and taking time between Contests to come support Ash.

Brock can’t take vacation? I can assure you that us physicians do get vacation time. There have been plenty of examples of Gym Leaders being temporarily absent or having a substitute, therefore Misty could have come as well. Delia and Oak can’t take a flight? They went to Alola too. What busy activity did Iris and Alain have going on that they couldn’t stick around for the finals?

I don’t understand trying to explain every character’s absence (while simultaneously justifying Chloe’s and Dawn’s presence) when this is a show where characters and Pokemon can be written in whatever way the writers so deign.

Regardless, the narrative was made clear with Goh since he is the co-protagonist of the show.

Dawn was practically a co-protagonist in DP, but the show didn’t randomly schedule the Grand Festival at the same time as the league conference, and have her abruptly leave then.

I just don’t get what narrative intent is being accomplished for Goh to be written to leave right before the finals.

Wasn't the whole argument of you and Morax that friends and family should go to public places in person to root for their champion even if circumstances make that impractical or even impossible?

Journeys was made during COVID-19, and many couldn't finish work animating because of the COVID-19 rules. So there is precedent for a lesson in zoom calls.

COVID-19. What do you think happened during Pokémon Journeys? Social distancing, zoom meetings, etc. They all became more prominent in our lives since the pandemic. Now, you don't have to physical go to school (or even work). You can just work at home or talk at home. By Pokémon Journeys, video chat is so common that a phone booth is considered alien to Goh. Obviously, Journeys doesn't have a pandemic but our societies have become more acceptable to online video chatting that it solved many multi-tasking issues. Like Liko with school. Can't stay in school because you're on the run from Explorers but still need your grades? Just get a Rotomphone to take online classes.

Kids all over the world, and especially in Japan, were constantly being bombarded with the message that it's perfectly fine to not be somewhere in person and that video is a completely acceptable substitute. Talking to grandma on Skype instead of going to see her doesn't mean you love her less etc etc. So yeah, Pokemon is probably better off sticking to that message instead of going for a "you should be there in person for people" message at a time the goverment itself was telling kids the exact opposite.


What kind of dire phrasing is this haha?

Come on man. Whether it’s a major athletic event, musical performance, academic competition, etc, of course you want your family and close friends out there in the audience supporting you, and being by your side during the tournament in the moments when you’re not on stage.

It’s not that deep. Obviously if there’s a personal emergency or a global pandemic occurring, then a loved one being absent can’t be helped. None of which was the case for these characters, who again could be written in any way shape or form barring VA unavailability.

COVID-19 affected the show production, but COVID-19 wasn’t happening in the show? There’s no virus or quarantine lol. There’s an entire stadium audience. Chloe and Dawn traveled to cheer Ash in person.

Considering how much interaction Dawn actually had with Ash in the four-parter, it would be bread crumbs at best. Just talking to Chloe for commentary and sitting in silence on the bleachers. Bringing Serena in person would need more screentime between the two interacting to make this reunion worthwhile. Otherwise, it might as well be any other Pokémon companion.

Well, that’s a fair take if you believe the writers are mediocre and incapable of allocating time properly and producing a meaningful dialogue between Ash and Serena.

To be clear, I think I would have preferred if Dawn had made her way to Cerise Labs and watched with Chloe there instead to accomplish the same role - after all, Chloe’s doing exactly that during the quarterfinals. But they did it this way likely so that there’s an even number of people on Ash’s side while Sonia and Hop are in Leon’s corner, neither of whom Chloe has a real connection with (in Hop’s case, none at all.)

I mean, even if this symmetry was the intention (it’d be a silly reason though), then I’d have preferred other characters besides Chloe at least, viz. Misty, Brock, Serena, or Goh.

Kids all over the world, and especially in Japan, were constantly being bombarded with the message that it's perfectly fine to not be somewhere in person and that video is a completely acceptable substitute. Talking to grandma on Skype instead of going to see her doesn't mean you love her less etc etc. So yeah, Pokemon is probably better off sticking to that message instead of going for a "you should be there in person for people" message at a time the goverment itself was telling kids the exact opposite.

It’s fine messaging given the circumstances of 2020-2021.

However, I don’t think the anime was pushing that agenda, at least not clearly? There wasn’t any pandemic or quarantine happening in the show. It was the series where Ash travels across multiple regions competing in the PWC. The fact that Dawn and Chloe were there in a crowded stadium sort of undermines that messaging too.
 

Shadao

Aim to be a Pokémon Master
My contention is why not? These are characters. They can be written in any way shape or form. The only obstacle is if the VAs are unable to be booked well in advance. If the writers wanted all of Ash’s friends to be present cheering him on in person, then they could have done so.

Regarding this thread specifically, Serena in particular should have been there.

They could also be written to win a League on their first try or not face any dilemma. That doesn't change the fact that there is a narrative chosen, and this one is based on reality. Yes, in reality, some people cannot make it to an event because of schedule conflict. It was clear that Dawn and Chloe were chosen because the series had previously established their relationship AND that they're currently not busy with their main goals. Compare that to Serena, who was established to be very active in Hoenn and importantly, was offered to take part with Lisa's big tour (and then it's later revealed that May is there as well).

Unless Lisa's tour is about the Master 8 Tournament or Ash's friends organized a big gathering at Galar to cheer Ash, it's far more difficult to expect just Serena to be there on bleachers. This is why I stated if Serena be at the Master 8 Tournament in person, then all of Ash's friends should be there as well because evidently, she can afford to put aside her goals just to cheer for Ash. Which again begs the question as to why Goh would be sitting out on this big event.

This is the most important point and I can't stress this enough: The moment Ash encouraged Goh to take up the call to Project Mew and pursue his dream rather than stay and watch Ash complete his dream, that's when I realize that Serena will not be making it to the Master 8 tournament. The narrative is set and everything must be done in accordance to that.

What kind of dire phrasing is this haha?

Come on man. Whether it’s a major athletic event, musical performance, academic competition, etc, of course you want your family and close friends out there in the audience supporting you, and being by your side during the tournament in the moments when you’re not on stage.

It’s not that deep. Obviously if there’s a personal emergency or a global pandemic occurring, then a loved one being absent can’t be helped. None of which was the case for these characters, who again could be written in any way shape or form barring VA unavailability.

COVID-19 affected the show production, but COVID-19 wasn’t happening in the show? There’s no virus or quarantine lol. There’s an entire stadium audience. Chloe and Dawn traveled to cheer Ash in person.

Pokémon is a show that is watched by millions. Pokémon is aware that many will be influenced by whatever messages they aired, particularly children. Pokémon is also affected by real life, such as 2011 earthquake in Japan cancelling the Team Rocket vs Team Plasma two-parter. The thing that Japan was going through, as described by @Dephender, it makes sense a Japanese show to tell kids it's okay that you can't physically meet the people you love due to outside circumstances.

It’s fine messaging given the circumstances of 2020-2021.

However, I don’t think the anime was pushing that agenda, at least not clearly? There wasn’t any pandemic or quarantine happening in the show. It was the series where Ash travels across multiple regions competing in the PWC. The fact that Dawn and Chloe were there in a crowded stadium sort of undermines that messaging too.

Because the message is that video chats and TV are not things to be frowned upon when it comes to connecting or rooting for people. They are considered equally valid methods of supporting people you like.

To push this message that you must always be there in person to root for someone is essentially a peer pressure message that could encourage children to risk their own health to cheer for their friends in person in a crowded audience.

This isn't something that Pokémon wants to promote in a time of a pandemic. And it's also why Serena is among the least likely candidates to make it in person to the Master 8 Tournament. She has a very specified goal and a very active career at this point in the timeline, which would make it very jarring to see her put aside her goals in favor of cheering for Ash in person. Once Goh left to pursue his dream, it was evident that the only people who could make it in person are people are currently not busy with their goals or jobs. And Dawn is the only one who has iconography and connection to Chloe unlike Cilian or Lillie.

To wrap it all up to Amourshipping, Serena doesn't have to go there in person to prove her love for Ash. She already did so by kissing him all the way back in 2016. And she's watching him live on TV along with May, likely talking about their time with Ash and what he means to them. Ash subconsciously knows she's watching him, just like all his friends.
 

Wei1

Active Member
That doesn't change the fact that there is a narrative chosen, and this one is based on reality.
I agree with the others that you overestimate the anime writers a bit too much in this case ^^'.

The story of whether you should be there or not is ultimately your opinion, your experience, and even if I don't completely agree with you, I don't intend to completely question your opinion, just point out certain elements that you have the right to take into account or not. And I even think that if things had been framed better, especially by showing the disappointment of Ash's friends at not being able to be there, I think your interpretation could have ended up being super interesting.

Just remember the context of the anime: the directors kept changing, the number of episodes left was limited due to the arrival of Horizons, and I think it was clearly panic at home, with the animators doing their best to give Ash a worthy ending despite all the constraints they were under. I think a good indication of this capsizing ship were the recap episodes and some of the power point battles.

The other point not to forget (already mentioned by other): one of the most expensive things in anime is seiyu, so bringing back all of Ash's friends would have clearly broken their budget - if they are present in person, it would be strange if they didn't say a word.

In other words: I can't see the director saying, "We ran out of budget, we ran out of time, and we sent our best people to work on the new anime, but you know what's important? Yeah, that's right: we're teaching kids a great life lesson, and to hell with the money! Come on guys, let's brainstorm and animate the episode in 1 week! Youhou!"

No, sorry, coming from an anime that answers the question "Why Latias specifically? How is it related to Ash?" they answer you: "Because it flies!", I think you just have to assume that they did their best to meet the deadlines and budget without worrying about sending any particular message other than: Ash finally wins after 20 years!

As for Goh, I think the explanation is the same: they had to finish their Mew project, they didn't have enough episodes left. So what was the solution? Separate Ash and Goh, justifying it with "he's following his dream, even if it's hard for him not to be able to cheer Ash on." It's like when you couldn't draw in art class, and you managed to come up with a cute line to explain that "in truth, my creation was meant to represent blah blah blah," with the sole purpose of ensuring that your mediocre work received an average grade.

Once again, it's not your pure opinion I'm questioning, but the idea that all decisions regarding the anime have been carefully considered, and that the directors of this series are all great philosophers who cannot be corrupted by the material and technical baseness of our world.
 
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Shadao

Aim to be a Pokémon Master
I agree with the others that you overestimate the anime writers a bit too much in this case ^^'.

The story of whether you should be there or not is ultimately your opinion, your experience, and even if I don't completely agree with you, I don't intend to completely question your opinion, just point out certain elements that you have the right to take into account or not. And I even think that if things had been framed better, especially by showing the disappointment of Ash's friends at not being able to be there, I think your interpretation could have ended up being super interesting.

Just remember the context of the anime: the directors kept changing, the number of episodes left was limited due to the arrival of Horizons, and I think it was clearly panic at home, with the animators doing their best to give Ash a worthy ending despite all the constraints they were under. I think a good indication of this capsizing ship were the recap episodes and some of the power point battles.

The other point not to forget (already mentioned by other): one of the most expensive things in anime is seiyu, so bringing back all of Ash's friends would have clearly broken their budget - if they are present in person, it would be strange if they didn't say a word.

In other words: I can't see the director saying, "We ran out of budget, we ran out of time, and we sent our best people to work on the new anime, but you know what's important? Yeah, that's right: we're teaching kids a great life lesson, and to hell with the money! Come on guys, let's brainstorm and animate the episode in 1 week! Youhou!"

No, sorry, coming from an anime that answers the question "Why Latias specifically? How is it related to Ash?" they answer you: "Because it flies!", I think you just have to assume that they did their best to meet the deadlines and budget without worrying about sending any particular message other than: Ash finally wins after 20 years!

The number of episodes were limited due to COVID-19. There was a significant delay in all productions back in 2020. Weekly episodes went to a screeching halt, and the latest Pokémon Movie was delayed a year later. This is because everyone was social distancing to avoid getting COVID-19. New policies were literally made to adapt to the changing reality.

And keep in mind, this happened in the first year of Pokémon Journeys. And how does COVID-19 spread? Through the air among crowded people. Unsurprisingly, this means the staff in the building was cut down. Animators were let go and everything has to be reshuffled. And you think the writers wouldn't notice this? That health was prioritized over socializing? That everything was going to Zoom?

As for Goh, I think the explanation is the same: they had to finish their Mew project, they didn't have enough episodes left. So what was the solution? Separate Ash and Goh, justifying it with "he's following his dream, even if it's hard for him not to be able to cheer Ash on." It's like when you couldn't draw in art class, and you managed to come up with a cute line to explain that "in truth, my creation was meant to represent blah blah blah," with the sole purpose of ensuring that your mediocre work received an average grade.

Really? The very last scene of Ash vs Leon 4-parter was Ash literally talking to Goh on the phone. You think they couldn't animate Goh, after celebrating Ash's victory, waving Ash a temporary goodbye as he boards the helicopter to get Mew? Out of all things that they did cut to make time (like Diantha being defeated mostly off-screen), Goh's departure before Ash's big battle didn't felt like one. The two-parter literally has Goh arriving at the Faraway Island on helicopter, meaning we didn't miss anything with them while Ash was battling Leon. If anything, it seems deliberate that both Ash and Goh would symbolically complete their respective dream at the time.

And come to think of it, that's what Serena and May are doing as well. Symbolically completing their dreams at the same as Ash completes his. Only, unlike Goh, they get to see Ash win live. And isn't that what Ash and Serena promised to each other in their short reunion?
 

Morax

King of heroes
Once again, it's not your pure opinion I'm questioning, but the idea that all decisions regarding the anime have been carefully considered, and that the directors of this series are all great philosophers who cannot be corrupted by the material and technical baseness of our world.
What bothers me is how people here try to justify every incorrect decision, every little fuck-up in this anime. It's like the writers can't make no mistakes.

Why can't we just agree they fucked up? just call it poorly written and be done with it.
 

Shadao

Aim to be a Pokémon Master
What bothers me is how people here try to justify every incorrect decision, every little fuck-up in this anime. It's like the writers can't make no mistakes.

Why can't we just agree they fucked up? just call it poorly written and be done with it.

Because we take into account of the world as it is, not what you wanted to be, and observe how it left an impact in the entertainment industry. That's just plain fact, period.
 
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