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Having more filler does more than just screw with plot and pacing

Discussion in 'Pokémon Animé Discussion' started by Power Up, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. Power Up

    Power Up ...

    It also makes the show extremely boring. I’m having to slog through episode after episode of nothing when I do actually watch SM. XY’s fillers were boring as hell as well, but the important eps and arcs more than made up for it. SM arcs in general are a total buzzkill and SM just doesn’t have that wow factor to me that XY/XYZ had. Shounen gets a bad rap, but damn is it hype as heck.
  2. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    Well I consider SM a double edged sword in that regard. While it does indeed have erratic pacing and not nearly enough development, I like it tries to make it's storytelling all around more versatile and character driven, thus still a way for the cast to shine, but in a different way. My issue with earlier series like XYZ was that often, filler or continuity, the show tended to be VERY formulaic and greatly restrict what it's characters were allowed to do, thus still limit development in a different way. How many 'main arc' episodes still had a Team Rocket interruption, or the non-Ash characters stuck in the background giving exposition, or a hyped up battle that turned out to be a very generic curb stomp or DEM? Continuity isn't automatically good.

    I could argue Ash's character has been allowed to shine in some of the anime's more versatile fillers as much as the main arcs because it's as much about personality and being granted scenarios to compliment it than just making them progress and be dynamic in role. Having episodes that are not just about goals or rivals or upgrades or formula if anything allow more free time for proper character studies. Not that these elements should be disregarded altogether but them without character agency is like putting meat in a sandwich without bread.

    Remember how the original Kanto series actually had APPALLING main arc progression for the large part, with little focus on the plot from the games and unfinished gym matches, and yet people like a lot of it because the storytelling was still very fun in places and found good original premises to use it's cast (eg. Team Rocket's backstories).

    Would a happy medium be more preferable? Certainly. Is SM's direction necessarily the worst one? Not really. Both generate forms of apathy in different areas, it depends what your preference in storytelling is.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  3. Leonhart

    Leonhart Disney fanatic

    Skipping the SM fillers is pretty easy, however: you just have to read the Japanese episode titles since they usually foreshadow the most crucial plot points.
    Blaze Master X likes this.
  4. AznKei

    AznKei Rabi-Ribi's Cocoa is cute! ^_^

    Then, there's people who can't wait more than one week for an episode to come out. Seriously, there's no perfect solution that would satisfy the needs of everyone.
  5. satopi

    satopi SM Ash is best Ash! All hail Champion Ash!

    XY(&Z) is the only saga with the least amount of filler.

    SM disguises it's filler into something that may or may not be mentioned in a future episode. Either way, something important doesn't always have to happen in almost every episode. Outside of the Trials/Gyms, getting a new Pokémon/item, and the League, what else is there to look forward to? A lot if you care about the characters.
  6. keepitsimple

    keepitsimple Well-Known Member

    Well... technically you don't "have" to slog through those episodes of nothing. You're doing that to yourself

    Dude you'll probably be happier if you just don't watch SM and wait for the Alola league and the Gen 8 anime. It's not going to change until possibly then. If it's not your thing, there is nothing any of us can do about it.
  7. Frozocrone

    Frozocrone Miraculous!

    Filler episodes don't screw up pacing if done correctly.

    In-between arcs to let them characters take a break and catch their breath? Sure, not fussed.

    Building the hype, only for the finale of the arc to be postponed by a wacky Halloween special? Yeah I could see problems.
    Ash-Pikachu likes this.
  8. Epicocity

    Epicocity Well-Known Member

    I don't think fillers are the actual issue. The issue is when that filler refuses to allow other episodes in to build up what should be the main plot. When the main plot arrives out of nowhere just to happen, that's where the problem is.
    Ash-Pikachu and 345ash-greninja like this.
  9. Hanto

    Hanto Water Addiction

    For me the real issue that fillers nowadays are just the slice of life-themed and bring zero development to characters like trainers. I wish we could see more battle-oriented fillers (not TR curbstomp) like double battle episode with Wargle and Mogurew VS Ash and Cilan.
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  10. Power Up

    Power Up ...

    i barely watch the show, I watch it here and there sporadically and look at the synopsis of the episodes
  11. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    The problem is even in the pre-SM fillers those were rare, besides the ones they did half a battle and then TR interrupted it.

    I don't think slice of life is always a lost cause, since it can lead to more relevant character focus than having them observe a COTD or beat up TR, which only very rarely did much dynamically for one of the protagonists. The slice of life episodes at least allow full focus on the protagonist during their rest time and thus show another side to their personality. Slice of life also doesn't mean no challenges or story either, just more mundane ones.

    I think Ash is just about the right balance in SM, since while he does at least get reasonable goal development and progression, they toy with his filler focus being much more character driven, thus we get the best of both sides of him. It's the companions who are blatantly uneven (though even then Kiawe is arguably one of the better handled male companions).

    This is admittedly true. There are many cases throughout the show I think they wasted time on something irrelevant or generic rather than using the time to build up something significant happening.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
    FlygontheRavager likes this.
  12. MidnightMelody

    MidnightMelody Hopeful for Gen 8

    I know Johto gets hate for having them but personally if done right they can be good. I am likely one of the few who will actually defend the final 20 episodes of BW
  13. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    I think the key there was that DA, though episodic, had some effortful and creative storylines reminiscent of the early OS. They'd also more or less fine tuned the controversial dynamics of the BW cast by then. Team Rocket were back to being jokes again, but more in terms of being funny foils for the twerps and still had some formidable moments or episodes they didn't interfere (compared to other last seasons where they're completely redundant antagonists and usually stonewalled by the twerps). Ash was more competent but still free game to funny antics and Iris was still a bit of an impulsive smartass but less arrogant than earlier on. Not every episode paced the exact same way and some stories made amusing use of the cast, compared to the final moments of DP or XY, which while maybe having a much more dynamic ongoing plot, usually ran on autopilot.

    They wouldn't dare have DP/XY Ash stoop to the silliness of being called an idiot by the Beheeyem or Dawn or Serena sink the ship they're standing on failing to battle Team Rocket of all people. They were too busy boosting them at the peak of their development and maturity, making them utterly revolved around their goals, and I think that seriously bogged down how character driven the later fillers can be, even the more comical ones. They get to the final point of their tournament and stop some loser bad guys like Team Rocket over and over, and that's it.
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2018
  14. Apslup

    Apslup Boss of the Phantom Troupe

    Generally, Pokemon Fillers are really boring, but you can generally tell what the episode is about by reading the title and watching the preview, so you know what episodes to skip.

    Yeah, if they actually dropped hints about the main plot, then they would be more bearable.

    I do like some of the Johto Fillers actually. The Whale Islands Mini-Arc is always fun for me to go back to. Also the episode "Hitmontop VS Bulbasaur! Hand to Hand Showdown!!" is great.

    Despite being a massive XY Fanboy, I do agree with this. Despite there not being much, God most of these fillers are annoying. The only two I like are the episodes "Bonnie the Caretaker! The Spoiled Tyrunt!!" and "Chespin! Its First Errand!!"
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2018
    Pokegirl Fan~ likes this.
  15. Yuugis Black Magician

    Yuugis Black Magician Well-Known Member

    It's all about how creative the staff is allowed to be. Right now the key animators are being given the time and resources to really add their own voices to Sun & Moon for once, so as opposed to only getting the general feel of how the writer and series director feels we're now adding new voices to the series through the extra resources given to character acting. Episode #59 doesn't have a hugely important to the plot storyline but at least we learned about the relationship between Suiren and Mao and how it's changed over the years, all thanks to the key animators being allowed to command scenes.
  16. ash&charizardfan

    ash&charizardfan Humanity's greatest soldier

    Well, fillers are important in a way to settle down a series especially after abig arc, besides i think filler episode has low animation and hence low budget than non filler episode and hence necessary or otherwise they will be having budget issues every series.
    satopi and Pokegirl Fan~ like this.
  17. Thumbs2

    Thumbs2 Well-Known Member

    Filler only screws up pacing when action is going on like when Axew got lost. In-between arcs filler works fine.
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  18. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    The bigger problem there is the repetition and execution, of course people will feel ripped off being given a filler if it has nothing meaningful to spotlight besides the same old formulas. SM has done a little better in this regard for example since it does still use it's fillers to look into other depths with the main characters or give the supporting cast more development. It's superfluous perhaps but it does it does at least strengthen the investment in these characters in the first place, the main problem is when the main arcs DO come it doesn't really deliver.
  19. Apslup

    Apslup Boss of the Phantom Troupe

    Basically this. IF they can come up with a good concept for a filler and can make something entertaining out of it, I'm all good. But it's the boring and uninspired (like the writing staff knew that had to come up with something, so they just used the first lazy idea they came up with) type fillers that are bad.

    I agree with this to an extent, like Axew getting lost really killed the Unova League's momentum but the filler episode during the Kalos League with Marron was really good since it foreshadowed the upcoming Team Flare Arc and allowed us to see more of Marron, Alain and Lysandre, which was great.
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  20. LilligantLewis

    LilligantLewis primarina donna

    Is this actually what's happened this month? I don't follow the original.

    Da! was the best because it was the originator of the ............ DUNSPARCE MEME!

    XY37, XY71, XY78, XY79, XY&Z05, XY&Z21, XY&Z22 were all extremely hilarious. I also don't even consider XY87 a filler because it's part of Bonnie's arc. If Bonnie's arc had built to nothing, I would consider them fillers, but her arc built up to her taking care of Squishy, but unlike the Espurr, Flabébé, Lapras, and Tyrantrum episodes, she doesn't break down crying when she has to say bye to it, and is brave instead. While it just seems normal to the audience that Bonnie takes Squishy under her wing in XY&Z, that's actually only because we've seen her do it so many times with these other Pokémon, whether we realized it consciously or subconsciously, those episodes were important to setting up Bonnie's final arc. Bonnie and Squishy are a crucial part of XY&Z.

    This is the single lowest point in the anime's history.
    Xuxuba likes this.

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