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First 13 seasons question

Discussion in 'Pokémon Animé Discussion' started by MidnightMelody, Apr 3, 2018.

  1. MidnightMelody

    MidnightMelody Degrassi Student

    Ok so I never thought about it but what was it that made the first 13 seasons the way they did? I love them and disliked most things after (still have not seen more than 15 eps of the XY saga so I can't judge on that one yet.) However as far as BW and SUMO go I can not say I am a fan. I know the music was in seasons 1-13 are not in the new stuff but I'm unsure if that is why it feels so odd to me. I'm curious if anyone else feels the same way.
  2. LilligantLewis

    LilligantLewis primarina donna

    I agree with you and you should definitely watch XY and XY&Z they are incredible.

    The feeling I get is that from OS-DP there was a natural progression of Ash getting better and better, and then suddenly he got way worse in BW. Fortunately in XY, it continued more from the progression of Ash's skill from DP, which is why I liked it, and tbh SM even though it has not many battles, actually does still keep Ash skilled, so maybe in SM it's not the same thing of BW where Ash lacks skill again, but just the massive change in artstyle.
    Genaller, Shadao, SinnohEevee and 2 others like this.
  3. Sceptile Leaf Blade

    Sceptile Leaf Blade Happy Minun

    It's just taste. Sun and Moon is turning out to be my favourite so far. I didn't really like XY much. It felt too formulaic for my tastes, especially the endless Team Rocket encounters. Same with Hoenn and to a lesser extent Sinnoh.
    Pokegirl Fan~ likes this.
  4. Dragalge

    Dragalge A bird once used my account

    I'll probably always like the first three sagas over the others although I will give credit where it's due.

    BW tried to break away from some norms and while most did not end up all that well executed imo, I do appreciate it for trying new things. The rivals didn't get conclusions, something XY did admittedly well on but they were fun rivals nonetheless due to their interactions between each other.

    XY has some fantastic-animated battles but I couldn't care less about the other characters + Pokemon sans Ash and Hawlucha because they were mostly dull to me lol (Serena's rivals especially but Sawyer was alright though). Team Flare finale was pretty great and the buildup was good with the Mega specials and whatnot. But, to me, it had some of the worst fillers since DP (yes even I rank DA!'s over them! As a pointless sidequest it was, none of them made me cringe like that awful lockpicking episode with the Binacle).

    SM made me care about characters other than Ash again like Kiawe and Rotom Dex although the pacing is very weird undoubtedly. But I do like how it's not so serious like XY was but still proves that it can have episodes like that with the Stoutland episode being big proof of that.

    Tl;dr As Sceptile Leaf Blade says, it's only a matter of what you like. No series is objectively bad lol.
  5. Tabasco Boshi

    Tabasco Boshi ★★★★★

    The first 13 seasons are a decently connected story, with continuity, progression... Everything feels natural. The art style doesn't change that much, Brock is always in Ash's side, all the old music carries over the generations, Team Rocket feel like Team Rocket all the time, same with Ash, constant callbacks that don't feel forced, Professor Oak as a recurring character...

    Then, they broke up with everything. First, "thanks" to the games, which also acted like a soft reboot in the franchise. They got rid of Brock, Ash suddenly felt like a different character, Team Rocket got brainwashed, all the old music was gone and the anime got its first major change in art style. There was little to no continuity until their main plot had to be dropped due to the earthquake/tsunami incident. The league was pathetic and the last part of BW was simply garbage, with some callbacks here and there. XY came out and they slightly changed Ash again, turning him into a regular shonen hero, but after BW, it was welcomed. Team Rocket tried to recover from the brainwash but they don't feel like them for the most part. Continuity? What is that? Ash made some progression as a trainer and while the league was awful (rushed and with only two complete battles of THE MAIN PROTAGONIST), at least he got to the finals. And then SM came out. Biggest art style change ever. And again, they changed Ash's personality once more, making him more "alive" and goofy while keeping his battling skills. We could say Team Rocket is back to normal but they're too underused. Continuity seems to be back (although it doesn't feel like in the old days).

    I'm not afraid to say that in my ideal anime, Brock would still be with Ash and the girl would change in every generation. And she would be a rookie with her own goal, like May and Dawn. Contests were cool. Performances... Underwhelming. Continuity would be strong and Ash would use old Pokémon regularly, specially in the league. But that's not going to happen. The best we can hope is that Gen 8 doesn't change the characters a lot and just offer some natural progression. And If they can keep an art style for more than 3 years, I'd be happy.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2018
    Pokegirl Fan~ likes this.
  6. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    The 'classic' era felt like it revelled in it's own corniness a bit more, and that I think helped give it more of an identity. You could already see the holes starting to form in that time, as early as Johto even, but it didn't quite have the same occasionally bland or outright pretentious feel the later seasons did.

    Take Team Rocket for example, they had the same role they do most of the time in later seasons, but I think the difference there is it's much more tongue in cheek early on. The twerps have more of a chemistry and bewilderment towards them, while since BW, it's become more of a generic 'stock hero vs stock villain' thing. TR went from being an affectionate pot shot at old repetitive cartoon hero vs villain cliches to playing them completely unironically. It's lost it's identity, hence it only becoming more tiresome and formulaic when they went back to their old shtick non-stop midway through XY, minus a lot of the silly dynamic.

    SM feels like it's trying to go back to the older more self aware goofball premise the original series had, but a lot of the old concepts still feel rather tired, hence I think it prefers doing its own thing a lot of the time (Ash and Team Rocket are fun again for example, but their dynamic together is still bland as hell, so they spend many episodes away from each other).

    At the end of the day, I think the show did need a freshen up, by DP even with some of the old charm, the formula was getting boring, there was no doubt about it. It's just that BW-onwards' execution isn't too polished, not to mention at times it feels like the writers still like clinging onto old habits to get around the filler episodes (especially in XY). I think they were losing passion for the show's format, most of them have been on the show for two decades after all, likely why SM had to experiment dramatically so they could find completely new stories they'd be more interested in toying with.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2018
  7. This is a tough question to answer without knowing what it was you liked about the first 13 seasons and what it is you don't like about the recent seasons.

    It's funny you mention this because I actually feel it's the other way around. I struggle nowadays to distinguish Johto, AG and DP from one another because the style of the show at that time was so remarkably consistent. No matter what changed with Ash's companions or Pokemon, the way the story was told and presented, the general tone of the show and the themes it explored were always the same. Whereas with BW, XY and SM, no matter what we might feel about the respective quality of those seasons, there was greater effort in mixing things up both visually and creatively. For example, you can tell that they tried to inject more humour into BW than they had done before, they used a lot more digitally aided production which made the show more colourful, went for a bigger cast of characters, amongst other things. Then XY went for a near opposite approach, making further improvements on the visuals, but opting for action over comedy and narrowing the scope of its story to just Ash. Now we have SM, the most experimental of them all, along with M20 and M21, which have really broken the old Pokemon mould.

    The way I see it now, Pokemon between 1999 and 2010 is the safe, global cash cow era that took few risks and was largely formula abiding. 2010 to 2017 was the testing the waters for change era. 2017-Present is now full experimentation (Gen 7 games, SM anime, M20/21, Pokemon Switch coming up).

    I just want to add to this that that a possible reason they cling onto old methods and writing templates is because of how the show is produced. Imagine having to come up with an episode script every week for two decades. It's impossible in that situation not to rely on templates and set methods of doing things because that just makes the job doable. No writing team can come up with new ideas and really think things through without being given the time to do so. Hence I always says that if Pokemon had breaks between seasons the overall quality of the product would increase.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2018
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  8. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    While it's true that the later seasons try a fair bit harder to spice things up, it's sometimes carelessly at the cost of treasured elements of the original episodes, Ash and Team Rocket's roles and characterisations are frequently divisive for example, and they go in and out with respecting continuity. Many shows try to make things fresher and more unique, but only half do a good job while many others just end up 'jumping the shark', alienating their old fan base and tearing up tried and true elements of the franchise in favour of flashy gimmicks (eg. Simpsons and Spongebob's attempts at edgier comedy, or The Flintstones utilising stock fantasy plots like the Great Gazoo). Pokemon I consider the halfway mark since while some of it's attempts DO work in the long run, it's identity does suffer at times, and a lot of new ideas only really start to work after a long run of trial and error (which isn't helped by cases they don't seem to learn and go from one extreme to the other, we had two series of very different extremes of Ash's character before they compromised them for example, and TR went from moderated blandly serious villains before slowly returning to overused completely ineffectual ones).

    As said, the fact the anime is ongoing constantly and the writers don't really get an opportunity to think things through is probably a major factor but even then I can see where fatigue starts to kick in bad for many elements, even long before the 'classic era' ended (as mentioned TR just became more and more of a plot device, and a lot of the twerps competitions have come off as farcical and plot armoured, this was a show that rarely ever had a developed third act). I will say that SM is one of the first times in a long while that writers look passionate about making the characters drive the plot over standard formula, plot staples and stock quotes, even if it is admittedly rough around the edges and often in a rather different direction from days of old, it's quite a cathartic re-spark of life.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2018
  9. Fatigue is certainly part of it. Pokemon is always going to be rough around the edges because of its weekly schedule. There's just not enough time to look back, iron out any lingering issues and give parts of the show the polish it needs, and that's reflected in the product. And as passionate at the staff are, there must be points when it feels like a grind.
  10. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    As said it becomes BLATANT when writers have lost passion for part of a show. It starts to 'auto pilot' and the whole thing runs on the same stock quotes and actions with nothing really developing or expanding besides superficial elements. I think that's why DP and XY started to get grating with their fillers, since they continued to rely on the old formula (the later parts of the OS and AG started to wear down badly at times as well). BW wasn't TOO bad since it had a long hiatus of changing things up (even if that itself was a big problem in areas), and I suppose when things went back to normal it hadn't worn down on them as much anymore. XY however returned to formula HARD in many areas for the whole series, so things just slowly continued waning even worse than DP. SM has a whole new formula for the most part (I imagine if it continues as long as the original did however, it will fizzle out as badly), though the 'classic' episodes are still a bit hit and miss. You can tell they're just DONE with 'Ash vs TR' plots.

    I think that might be also why recurring characters like Ash, TR and Brock started to fizzle out or derail, because they'd been used so much past their potential that the writers likely just stopped caring how they treated them, even if they are at least trying to keep freshening Ash into something they can care about.
  11. AshxSatoshi

    AshxSatoshi Ice Aurelia

    To be honest it's because the first 13 seasons were a clear progression in story and within Ash. Also disclaimer: I don't see how XY is a continuation of DP and probably never will. Anyway after post DP each of the series after that have gotten a soft reboot/dramatic change with the most obvious being BW and the most dramatic being XY. The reason I'm saying this is because while Unova was a soft reboot, XY was an isolated series within its own and Sun and Moon basically changed the entire story norm for the series. The writers basically treat each saga as its own series than an entire show at this point. I personally don't care about this as I've grown used to it but I truly wish they'd stop tweaking Ash's personality each series because it's getting tiring at this point.
  12. AznKei

    AznKei Getting ready for Pump It Up XX.

    I doubt the producers/writers would care about Ash's natural progression anymore. I see the anime mainly as a marketing tool for the franchise, and they don't seem to bother whether some old fans like and keep watching the show or not. I was disappointed that they insisted of keeping the "status quo" during XY(Z) but I moved on and accept the show for what it is, regardless of the SM issues.
    SinnohEevee and LilligantLewis like this.
  13. LilligantLewis

    LilligantLewis primarina donna

    For the record, I meant that XY was a progression from DP in terms of Ash's skill level, not in terms of story. In terms of story it's directly continued from BW, since Ash, Iris, and Cilan traveled for several episodes with Alexa, who anime-debuted Gogoat, Helioptile, and Noivern during the Gen V anime, and then proceeded to become a recurring character in Gen VI anime.
    SinnohEevee likes this.
  14. AshxSatoshi

    AshxSatoshi Ice Aurelia

    Ah I understand. A lot of people like to pretend BW didn't exist and that Ash flew straight to Kalos after Sinnoh. While I don't completely agree about Ash's progress of DP--->XY since XY borrowed a couple of battle tactics from BW I can see your point.

    As someone who personally loathed XY Ash, even I can admit SM jumped the shark if they want us to believe SM Ash is XY Ash. They're almost two completely different characters minus the mutual love of Pokémon. As I said earlier though it helps (for me at least) to treat each region like it's it own show. The writers barely bother with continuity or callbacks to past events so it's not like you need to watch every saga (post DP) to understand what's going on.
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2018
  15. SinnohEevee

    SinnohEevee Well-Known Member

    OS -> DP felt like a continous story. Comes BW and everything changes. Ash goes from being a rookie again in BW, to super serious and competent again in XY (did he just magically remember everyone on the plane?), to goofy and treating the Island Challange like an afterthought in SM (this is the same guy who can't wait for the next Gym Battle).
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  16. Epicocity

    Epicocity Well-Known Member

    Personally, I like to explain it as this:
    Ash progressed very naturally from OS to DP. Come BW, not only had he been at home for an undetermined length of time, but he was also still a bit cocky from his feats in Sinnoh. It led him to not take things as seriously and believe he didn't even need to think about the basics. Unova then hammered into him how poor an outlook this was for any success by having him largely fail to make major strides, while making dumb decisions, and being continually reminded by his companions of how far he has to go, culminating in his lower placement at the League.

    At the end of BW, he then realizes how much he slacked off in Unova and vows to do better, thus explaining his determination and extra focus in XY.

    The only one I can't figure out is XY to SM, mostly because while the competence is there, Ash has been stripped of his wanderlust with little justification, so it doesn't even fit in an overall narrative flow.
  17. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    In fairness SM Ash does seem if anything MORE overexcitable and willing to check out everything around him, just not in the same way as in previous seasons. I suppose one could maybe consider it a meta outlook mirroring many watching the show, he's done the same shtick five times over and has likely gotten as far in the league as the show's mandates will let him, of course it'd be more captivating to try a new approach.
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  18. MidnightMelody

    MidnightMelody Degrassi Student

    Some say Alola is a vacation for him and I guess I can see it since a league is only be formed since he got to Alola. (I am afraid to see this league since I have no idea how it will be done)
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  19. LilligantLewis

    LilligantLewis primarina donna

    wow, that's a really good point and is totally inexplicable
    SinnohEevee likes this.
  20. TheWanderingMist

    TheWanderingMist MAL is nothing more than an echo chamber

    But there's no League in Alola (yet). In all the other regions, he had a time limit as to getting the qualifications to enter, but not here. And we actually get to see most of the important rraining done on-screen, so new moves don't come out of nowhere.
    LilligantLewis likes this.

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