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The False Myth that Pokemon Adventures is edgy and why every Pokemon fan should check it out!

Discussion in 'General Pokémon Discussion' started by shoz999, Oct 6, 2018.


Did you actually believed Pokemon Adventures was this dark edgy series before coming here?

  1. Yes

    0 vote(s)
  2. Nope.

    4 vote(s)
  1. shoz999

    shoz999 IT WAS ME! SETETH!

    Just a heads up, textbook load of words.

    Pokemon Adventures is AMAZING.
    So let me get this out of the way. Pokemon Adventures IS AWESOME. It has arguably the most exciting action scenes in the Pokemon series, it has some of the most emotion-intensive action-packed heated story-lines that will leave you with a big smile or in tears, it's portrayed just how important the idea of friendship and hope is with such great detail to the Pokemon world far better than the Pokemon anime can. Pokemon Adventures isn't just a great Pokemon adaptation of the games, it's a great manga, at least in the shonen genre, in general. It has arguably one of the best and most creative love stories you will ever see in the romance genre, you will be left with tears of joy of seeing a sociopath discovering his humanity, you will see villains who will teach the hero what it means to be a Pokemon trainer, you'll be terrified in how accurately it depicts how destructively powerful legendary Pokemon can be, you will see the hero of the story having growing up over the years, passing the baton to the next young hero, passing the spotlight to him only for that next hero to BREAK the baton pass and share the spotlight with the previous hero shocking everyone! This is Pokemon Adventures, it is an AMAZING Pokemon adaptation that is able to stay loyal to GameFreak's vision of the Pokemon World while maintaining some of it's own creative liberties.

    Which is why it really grinds my gears how I see these popular gaming news sites and PokeTubers from time to time cite Pokemon Adventures as this dark and edgy take on Pokemon. To anyone who has read Pokemon Adventures. Well you know that's absolute bullshit. Unfortunately the sad truth is there are some Pokemon fans who do believe this and never actually read the manga to judge it themselves. The actual truth is Pokemon Adventures is one of the most consistent, faithful and light-hearted coming-of-age epics you will ever see.

    As Satoshi Tajiri, the creator of Pokemon explains, "This is the comic that most resembles the world I was trying to convey."


    However let's get to the "dark and edgy" stuff. So if you know Satoshi's famous quote of describing Pokemon Adventures, you know that it's not to be taken lightly. There is an insane amount of research and detail that goes into the comic. For example Red is portrayed having Poliwhirl as his very first Pokemon, later revealed he captured it as a Poliwag. This is actually a reference itself to Satoshi's favorite Gen 1 Pokemon, Poliwag. There is also the unused female protagonist, Leaf, that is adapted into the manga as Blue in 1997, in fact this is her actual first appearance way before FireRed and LeafGreen appeared. Then there's the fact that Red chose Bulbasaur and Green, the rival, chose Charmander, a reference itself to the pre-marketing months before Pokemon Red and Green version was released, the game's marketing featuring Red using Bulbasaur, which represents serenity and peace, and Green, using Charmander, which represents power, passion and fierceness. So what does this have to do with the "dark and edgy" stuff? Well as Satoshi said, this manga most resembles the world he envisioned, a Pokemon world that has many of it's light-hearted moments but it also has it darker moments more specifically attached to it's villains.

    One of the reasons why Pokemon fans love Pokemon Adventures so much is not because "it's dark and edgy" but because it stays loyal to GameFreak's vision of the Pokemon world more accurately than any other adaptation, with the exception of maybe Pokemon Origins/Generations, which means a lot of meaningful light-hearted adventures with some dark moments in-between. Honestly Pokemon Adventures really isn't that dark. In fact it's nowhere near as dark as say, Star Wars or Harry Potter. I suppose what I'm saying is that there isn't really a ton of dark content in Pokemon Adventures as everyone says it is. When it does do it's darker and grittier moments, it's usually no where as twisted as Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith where the main character Anakin massacres the Jedi Order. In fact I think that's kind of the problem here, not necessarily that Pokemon Adventures is darker than the anime but that these gaming news sites and PokeTubers depict Pokemon Adventures as twisted, edgy, messed-up. That's just simply not true. I think every reader of Adventures can agree that writer Kusaka writes a particular dark moment with a reason behind it, not for the sake of "dark and edgy" or more specifically, shock value. The reason why I mentioned all that "faithful to the games" stuff is that the Pokemon Adventures accurately depicts the Pokemon world as a light-hearted charming world with a fairly dark side to it, something I feel the anime fails to do what the games often partake in. So let's take a look at some of the most infamous scenes depicted as "evidence" that Pokemon Adventures is edgy.

    The explanation behind the most infamous and commonly-used examples to depict the 20-year ongoing series as "dark and edgy" Warning. Spoilers.


    The most infamous and popular image I've noticed often used by sites and PokeTubers is this. A charmeleon easily slashing through the Arbok. Although this imagery certainly is shocking with detail to it, the sites and tubers aren't wrong about that, there's actually a reason behind this, one that almost every gaming news site and PokeTuber have failed to report on.


    It's later revealed in the next story arc, that Arbok was never dead. The Arbok that was sliced into two has the unique ability to regenerate missing body parts. The reasoning behind this scene is something almost never mentioned in any gaming news site or video. Arbok with Regeneration kind of reminds me of a certain Bellsprout with lightning rod lol.


    Finally we get to the second most infamous scene that the gaming news sites depict Pokemon Adventures as this "dark and edgy" adaptation, the death of wild Magmars. Unlike Arbok, this is far more understandable as these Magmars actually die. Your probably thinking Kusaka is just doing this only for shock value but your actually wrong. This is a first look to give a clear idea of who Giovanni's character is, how much of a monster he is. Most casual Pokemon fans recognize Giovanni as this devious James Bond-style businessman villain from the anime but the anime does a lackluster job at adapting Giovanni's character from the games. Up until the Best Wishes series, Ash Ketchum has only met Giovanni, the big main villain of the first generation, once and briefly in the Mewtwo Returns special. Giovanni in both the games and manga aims to be "the very best like no ever was!" but through much darker methods. Actually in some ways he serves as the antithesis to Red, Ash or you, the protagonist of Pokemon Red and Blue. It's why Giovanni is called "The Self-Proclaimed Strongest Trainer" in the games, why he created Team Rocket largely based around Pokemon and also why he abandoned it when he was finally defeated in such a long time. It's also why his son, Silver, in the games resents his father, Giovanni, believing Team Rocket grunts are weak on their own. That is Giovanni's ultimate goal, to become stronger and both the games and manga depicts that he will use any means necessary to achieve that, including killing wild Magmar who are being a nuisance for him. Actually there's a lot more going on in that image below, specifically that Cloyster he's using which is not a ground-type, the type Giovanni best specializes in. There's actually a very good and very interesting reason why Giovanni is using a Cloyster over his usual Ground-types and the reason might surprise you as it's a reflection of Giovanni's character, the Self-Proclaimed Strongest Trainer. Onto the next image.

    And... that's actually it lol.

    The two images above are arguably the only, or at least the most common examples I've ever seen used in gaming news sites or PokeTuber channels. The simple reason for this is as I said before, there aren't actually a lot of gruesome twisted-looking moments in the series as those news sites and tubers make it out to be. However I do not want to mislead you. There is this one horrifying scene far darker than the Arbok slicing and Magmar-freezing and that's the funny part lol. I don't think these new sites and PokeTubers have done their research or at least not enough of it because this one extremely dark scene at the end of the Ruby and Sapphire arc is almost never mentioned. All the more satisfying how it happily ends. There are also other moments far darker than those two scenes. If you want something to cry about, read the Pokemon Black and White arc. What happens is not gruesome, edgy, twisted but it is very dark. Actually I'd best describe it as one of the saddest, if not the saddest moment in the Pokemon series. Now if you really want to see dark stuff, read Pokemon Ruby and Sapphire Arc. No, there are no Pokemon deaths. Actually come to think of it, I think the wild Magmar are so far the only Pokemon that's died in the series. Back to the topic, there are no Pokemon deaths but the stakes are terrifyingly high, more specifically it accurately captures GameFreak's vision of how terrifying Groudon and Kyogre really are. No joke, when you read this manga you will think Groudon and Kyogre are the most terrifying beings in the Pokemon series and it's actually quite faithful to GameFreak's vision of how you shouldn't mess with these two legendaries.There are also some other dark moments here and there but it's not really that different from the Pokemon anime's share of dark moments, if you have been a long time fan of the anime, you'd know that the anime has it's share of darker moments especially in the original Kanto season.

    Why every Pokemon fan should check this out! Pokemon Adventures isn't dark. Instead it's a mature and loyal take on GameFreak's vision of the Pokemon World while at the same time able to maintain it's own creative liberties at exploring Satoshi's Pokemon World. That's why so many Pokemon fans love it. We get to see a more loyal and up-to-date take on GameFreak's vision of the Pokemon World in action over the anime marketed to children.

    I think some of you anime fans can agree with me on that the anime suffers from it's own overwhelming popularity. The Pokemon anime serves as marketing for children first and everything else is second. For example, they needed a legendary for the upcoming 4th Pokemon movie so they scrapped the GS Ball storyline they had planned for Johto Journeys for the sake of expanding or continuing the anime's consistent popularity in it's movies. It's this same reason why the animation crew felt like they needed to overhaul Pokemon on a new scale for the beloved XYZ series, believing storytelling is good marketing and it's also the same reason why some of you anime fans have mixed reactions to some of the recent rushed-out storylines in the Sun and Moon season.

    The Pokemon Adventures does not suffer from this problem as it is nowhere as overwhelmingly popular as the Pokemon anime and unlike other Pokemon adaptations, this has GameFreak's or the Pokemon Company's full support which is why Pokemon Adventures is the second most consistent adaptation of the Pokemon games. Basically, while the Pokemon anime continues to serve as the role of the ever popular marketer to children, the Pokemon Adventures manga is free to tell the story that GameFreak wants to tell. Key-idea, wants to tell. See not all of GameFreak's storylines make sense on paper and you could say it's Pokemon, when does it ever make sense? I suppose what's the better word is believable or plausible and that's where Pokemon Adventures comes in for the most part. A great example is the Ruby and Sapphire Story Arc adapting the Ruby and Sapphire games. The first Ruby and Sapphire games did a pretty poor job at exploring what Maxie and Archie's motives were. It wasn't until the remakes that GameFreak offered a more better explanation, that Maxie wants to expand humanity's future by expanding land and Archie wants to expand Pokemon's future by expanding the ocean but at the same time it just seems incredibly dumb for obvious reasons, like water being a necessity or there's Pokemon on land, what about them? Sometimes Pokemon Adventures has to take liberties in order to tell the story GameFreak wants to tell and that is how freaking damn terrifying Kyogre and Groudon are through a simple motive. Power. Maxie and Archie wants to awaken Kyogre and Groudon out of the sake of power. It's an extremely generic trope but not only does this simple goal make a lot more sense for the original games than the over-complicated one GameFreak came up with in the remakes, it's actually very compelling and believable how far Maxie and Archie are willing to go for the sake of power. In fact that's actually a theme here of who is actually in charge? Are you in control of the power or is power controlling you? Pokemon Adventures is not necessarily loyal to the games but is loyal to GameFreak's vision of those games.

    However it's not just conflicts and climaxes it does better. The manga also does the idea of friendship and hope better in great detail than both the games and anime, especially during uncertain times. It'll even show you a new perspective on villains that you never thought you would see before and yet, it actually makes a lot of sense.

    "Listen to me... please... Pokemon can be scary... but they're kind, loving creatures."

    A Boy and his Lapras.



    Are you interested in Pokemon Adventures but you don't know how to access and enjoy this long series?

    So I've notice another common problem why you don't hear a lot of talk about Pokemon Adventures. There are plenty of Pokemon fans who do know that Pokemon Adventures being called "edgy" is not true. Or some people are just interested in it because they think it's "edgy". Some may have ready a sample at their local library, saw a few pictures on google, whatever the reason there is interest in it and for some fans, it's hard to keep up with the series, not knowing where to start. Honestly you can start with any story arc but you will have some trouble knowing past returning characters, out of incredibly well-done fanservice usually that enhances the plot, sharing the spotlight with other characters. Personally I think you should start at the beginning, the RBG/Y arc. It's not the best story arc but it's a good doorway to the series. The breakout story arc, it's memorable Frieza arc it's Chunin Exams arc etc, is easily the GSC story arc where Pokemon Adventures fully grasps it's own identity.

    As for accessibility, that's an easy one if your into digital. As of now, Viz Media has started to release the English translations of the manga from September for Kindle, iBook, Nook, Google Play and Comixology devices. They also have links to physical paper back editions if your interested. Or you can buy them from Viz itself, which I'm not actually sure how that works.

    Digital/Physical Releases - https://www.viz.com/read/manga/pokemon-adventures-volume-1/product/1958

    What are your thoughts?
    Do you agree or disagree with some of my points? Do you still think Pokemon Adventures is this dark edgy series or have you realized that Adventures is potentially a mature and loyal adaptation of the Pokemon game series. Are you interested in buying a copy of one of the volumes or are you just intrigued by the series for now? What are your thoughts on this false myth that Pokemon Adventures is depicted as this "dark and edgy" series by gaming news and that some Pokemon fans sadly believe them, not checking out the manga to judge for themselves. Do you think every Pokemon fan should check this out, maybe read a free sample?
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2018
    e9310103838 likes this.
  2. Darthlord7

    Darthlord7 Explorer

    Pokemon barring fanfics and maybe some fangames was never "edgy" per se and Pokespe is no exception to that rule. The manga has some dark moments here and there (Blue and Silver's past, Blue seeing her parents disappearing in front of her eyes, Steven Stone's temporary death, Lysandre and Malva seemingly die by getting impaled by sharp rock etc) but it's still overall a light-hearted series. I think people are jumping on the edgy bandwagon just by looking at the panels of Arbok get chopped in half scene, the Magmar broking to pieces or maybe even Blue pretending to severe her own arm which especially the first one gave the manga wrong reputation. If we compare it with the anime of course, it's a bit more violent since we actually have blood, those weird scenes I mentioned above but the series overall is still mainly about friendship between humans and Pokemon and follows closely the vision the Pokemon creators have for the franchise. So, as a conclusion, Pokespe has arguably more violent and dark moments than let's say the Pokemon anime yet calling it edgy is a stretch and a false assumption since it goes against the theme of the Pokemon franchise itself.
    shoz999 likes this.
  3. buskalilly

    buskalilly Well-Known Member

    I will admit that back when I first checked out Adventures, it was because I'd seen the Arbok panel and the zombies and so on. That isn't what made me stick around, though.

    I do think Adventures has a more mature type of storytelling than the anime. I dont mean "mature" in the sense that it is dark and edgy and violent - for starters, that sort of thing can be incredibly immature - I just mean in the sense that there's more gravity. Actions have consequences, the story moves forward, characters show some development.
    shoz999 and Scammel like this.
  4. e9310103838

    e9310103838 Well-Known Member

    I agree with you. Just a few days ago, I saw that there was a comment site that also commented on PMSP like this. :D

    Compared to the original chapters, the later chapters are less violent (mainly the violence against Pokemon). I think this is Kusaka catching some kind of guidelines to describe Pokemon story. Despite that, many chapters still contain some dark plots. (especially Ruby & Sapphire, FireRed & LeafGreen, Black & White, Black 2 & White 2, and X & Y)

    I think this fanmade video is a complete presentation of what this manga is. (many PMSP fans have seen it XD)

    And this manga clip fanmade video is also doing this well. :cool:

    Darthlord7 and shoz999 like this.
  5. shoz999

    shoz999 IT WAS ME! SETETH!

    The animation is a bit off, however there's clearly a lot of care and hardwork put into that animation if you understand how animation works. The first one does a pretty good job at capturing much of the drama that unfolds in Adventures

    However I liked the second one more as it captures the simple Pokemon themes of Friendship, Rivalries, Villains, the Pokemon, the Adventure as a whole really well through the actual panels featured in the comic. It's like looking at Pokemon history itself through the comic pages.

    And 0:26 - I really liked that iconic scene of how Red and Green hold their Pokeballs in a particular way before starting their Pokemon battle. That should absolutely be an iconic feature in the main series online multiplayer when challenging an opponent. Instead of the usual introduction VS. screen, we get this "challenge accepted" pose.

    Last edited: Oct 8, 2018
    e9310103838 likes this.

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