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What are your taboo opinions about the anime?

DankOverlord

Komodo Dragons Rule!
I reckon this is unpopular, but I think SM had the right idea of having a big cast, just it wasn't executed great. Ash works better with a lot of different characters to bounce off of and generally the show feels more vibrant with a bigger variety of chemistries and interactions. When only one or two characters take over, it usually gets a bit dull.

SM's bigger problem was individual development, and even that felt owed more to how much time it wasted. I feel they could have easily fit in plenty for all six characters, but it took until the eleventh hour to bother with big change ups for half of them. Reminder that Sandy, Shaymin and Meltan only appeared midway into the last season, while the only capture in the second was Poipole. Even worse the former two were only their trainer's second Pokemon. Meanwhile I think the only contender in a previous series is Dawn's Togekiss, and even then Dawn had PLENTY of captures and development beforehand.

Even with that however, SM was a lot of fun dynamic wise, and I think a lot of characters shine just as well as foils than through arcs.
Now this is a more solid taboo opinion. Though it is a criticism I've seen elsewhere but one I can agree with, not all character focus was great in SM
 

SerGoldenhandtheJust

Remember: Eevee Taxi>Showcases & Best Girl Dawn <3
One has to keep in mind though that when it comes to character focus, I think there was a lot of it in SM. Now goal focus or at times development focus is another thing. SM's major strength was how much character interactivity there was and even in 'fillers' characters shone through and were vibrant, keeping the episodes fun and unique while giving a plethora of things for Ash to bounce off of as @DatsRight said
 

Leonhart

Imagineer
Goh’s goal should’ve belonged to Ash. Shoot, at the beginning both the English & Japanese theme song were about Ash traveling the world to catch ‘em all.
I would've found that amusing, mostly for the sake of seeing if the viewers who complain about Gou not doing enough with his Pokemon would still complain if Satoshi were put in the exact same situation, inevitably with hundreds of Pokemon that he'd do close to nothing with.
 

mehmeh1

I can do anything
I reckon this is unpopular, but I think SM had the right idea of having a big cast, just it wasn't executed great. Ash works better with a lot of different characters to bounce off of and generally the show feels more vibrant with a bigger variety of chemistries and interactions. When only one or two characters take over, it usually gets a bit dull.

SM's bigger problem was individual development, and even that felt owed more to how much time it wasted. I feel they could have easily fit in plenty for all six characters, but it took until the eleventh hour to bother with big change ups for half of them. Reminder that Sandy, Shaymin and Meltan only appeared midway into the last season, while the only capture in the second was Poipole. Even worse the former two were only their trainer's second Pokemon. Meanwhile I think the only contender in a previous series is Dawn's Togekiss, and even then Dawn had PLENTY of captures and development beforehand.

Even with that however, SM was a lot of fun dynamic wise, and I think a lot of characters shine just as well as foils than through arcs.
A lot of it could've been fixed if more of the developments from s3 had been put on s2 instead. Especially stuff like Charjabug or Popplio's evolutions.
 

DatsRight

Well-Known Member
One has to keep in mind though that when it comes to character focus, I think there was a lot of it in SM. Now goal focus or at times development focus is another thing. SM's major strength was how much character interactivity there was and even in 'fillers' characters shone through and were vibrant, keeping the episodes fun and unique while giving a plethora of things for Ash to bounce off of as @DatsRight said
Yeah, that was a bonus for SM, and why I think character numbers weren't an issue, especially considering some series with only three or four characters are even more imbalanced.

I tended to think the characters that thrived the most however were the ones who at least 'clicked' a small degree of development early on, leaving them something ongoing throughout the rest of the series. Kiawe and Sophocles both got their secondary Pokemon in the first season for example, and this tended to offer more in terms of interactions and tidbits of involvement for them (eg. the three man dynamic with them and Ash in the Charjabug/Vikavolt focused episodes), while Lillie similarly got her family introduced at the start of the second season.

To compare Mallow kinda struggled to stand out until her Poni episode, which was about midway into the last season. She slowly got better after that, but it was kinda too late by then. She'd spent over two thirds of the series as the most undercooked character.

Similarly given how interaction focused SM was, the most entertaining Pokemon were usually the ones with teammates to bounce off of, hence most of the boys' teams being far more memorable until Ultra Legends. Hell Snowy remained a satellite character for Lillie until the penultimate episode.
 
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Sham

Code Lyoko was ahead of it's time
Considering SM is still relatively popular and a lot of people on here enjoy it as well I’ll say this but I’m not sure if it’s “taboo” or not.

SM’s priorities and focus is/was a very good reason to find it tainted and underwhelming. I’ll say this again: having six main characters when you can barely balance three/four is a stupid decision and always will be. Heck the writers even sometimes have issues balancing Goh’s and Ash’s spotlight. The classmates were payed dust and this becomes even more apparent when they freaked out and sneakily rushed a bunch of “development” the last hour of the show. If the series wanted to focus on other ways of being a trainer/becoming stronger fine do that but it becomes a walking contradiction when you automatically enter everyone in a league give them amazing battling abilities under the guise of “off screen training”. SM wanted their cake and wanted to eat it too. I think the biggest offender of this is Lana because outside of a few gag battles, totem Water Trail and TR blast offs… she didn’t deserve magically becoming a bad***. And don’t get me wrong I enjoyed the league for what it was and it really isn’t at the bottom of my lists league wise as long as BW exist. The series just was awful at character development where we get smacked with a bunch of filler episodes… some character development and straight back to filler. Like I said that’s fine but my issue is that they panic rushed everything and magically everyone was “developed” without actually earning it. How is that Mallow had a fully evolved Pokémon but wasn’t in one battle?

The series was good in terms of being an Ash-centric series and he’s arguably his best here but it definitely came at the expense of the other characters. Even XY practically making Ash into some hero still was able to develop Serena with discount Contests but it’s like SM didn’t care.
 

SerGoldenhandtheJust

Remember: Eevee Taxi>Showcases & Best Girl Dawn <3
To compare Mallow kinda struggled to stand out until her Poni episode, which was about midway into the last season. She slowly got better after that, but it was kinda too late by then. She'd spent over two thirds of the series as the most undercooked character.
I honestly really disagree with this stance. While Mallow definitely without a doubt suffered to stand out in terms of goal development and didn't receive as much focus, she always was a factor in the episodes that made her very enjoyable and pleasant to watch. Despite being undercooked she had a great personality and most of all her interactions with EVERYONE was amazing. She was like the 'mom' of the group and did it well, I particularly loved her and Ash's chemistry and enjoyed the episodes where both of them spent time together such as the Lurantis trial episode. Mallow never struggled to stand out or be forgettable as people claimed tbh, sure she didn't get much development was she still was always am integral part of the chemistry and interaction of the cast for me.

The classmates were payed dust and this becomes even more apparent when they freaked out and sneakily rushed a bunch of “development” the last hour of the show. If the series wanted to focus on other ways of being a trainer/becoming stronger fine do that but it becomes a walking contradiction when you automatically enter everyone in a league give them amazing battling abilities under the guise of “off screen training”. SM wanted their cake and wanted to eat it too. I think the biggest offender of this is Lana because outside of a few gag battles, totem Water Trail and TR blast offs… she didn’t deserve magically becoming a bad***.
I really disagree that SM 'sneaked in' development or panicked. Sure there was a lot more development in the third year compared to the second year but it doesn't feel like the writers were in a hurry to rush coz they thought they screwed up and panicked or whatever. It all seemed deliberate tbh, and organic.
Also they really weren't made experienced battlers. Only Ash and Kiawe were and they had skills to back it up. Sophs and Lana were next and both of them had stuff to back it up. Sophs received a lot of development in the third year, particularly his development with training Vikavolt and becoming a trainer, and we knew he was smart so his performance was believable and done right. Same with Lana, she wasn't really a 'badass' in battling, sure she was shown to be a natural prodigy at everything and as a gag was usually perfect in contrast to Kiawe but when it comes to battling she too had believable outcomes. She was outclassed and brutually defeated by Guzma, and she defeated Mallow who hadn't battled at all much, so it was believable. Same with Lillie, she always had an analytical mind and a mind of battling, esp shown when she battled her butler with Pikachu. I didn't find anyone's performance to be overdone or that they were suddenly made to be good battlers. The battle royale was also a team effort anyway, so I don't really agree that SM had its cake and tried to eat it as well
 

DatsRight

Well-Known Member
I honestly really disagree with this stance. While Mallow definitely without a doubt suffered to stand out in terms of goal development and didn't receive as much focus, she always was a factor in the episodes that made her very enjoyable and pleasant to watch. Despite being undercooked she had a great personality and most of all her interactions with EVERYONE was amazing. She was like the 'mom' of the group and did it well, I particularly loved her and Ash's chemistry and enjoyed the episodes where both of them spent time together such as the Lurantis trial episode. Mallow never struggled to stand out or be forgettable as people claimed tbh, sure she didn't get much development was she still was always am integral part of the chemistry and interaction of the cast for me.
My overall problem with Mallow is that she slowly became 'the normal one' of the group quickly in and didn't have as much of an agency. Hell even in terms of comedy, Mallow tended to get the least gags and shirk from the slapstick antics more often than everyone else. I feel like the last season shown some progress in trying to fix this about her, she definitely got more to do in that one, even in terms of little character moments, but she still often felt like she struggled to get involved in a plot compared to Kiawe, Sophocles or even Lillie. You could often pair them with Ash and they'd still have a lot to do, even as a supporting character, while Mallow was too often reduced to the 'prop' character many other series had at least one of.

I really disagree that SM 'sneaked in' development or panicked. Sure there was a lot more development in the third year compared to the second year but it doesn't feel like the writers were in a hurry to rush coz they thought they screwed up and panicked or whatever. It all seemed deliberate tbh, and organic.
Also they really weren't made experienced battlers. Only Ash and Kiawe were and they had skills to back it up. Sophs and Lana were next and both of them had stuff to back it up. Sophs received a lot of development in the third year, particularly his development with training Vikavolt and becoming a trainer, and we knew he was smart so his performance was believable and done right. Same with Lana, she wasn't really a 'badass' in battling, sure she was shown to be a natural prodigy at everything and as a gag was usually perfect in contrast to Kiawe but when it comes to battling she too had believable outcomes. She was outclassed and brutually defeated by Guzma, and she defeated Mallow who hadn't battled at all much, so it was believable. Same with Lillie, she always had an analytical mind and a mind of battling, esp shown when she battled her butler with Pikachu. I didn't find anyone's performance to be overdone or that they were suddenly made to be good battlers. The battle royale was also a team effort anyway, so I don't really agree that SM had its cake and tried to eat it as well
I feel like the problem was that they too often gave them the allusion of being strong by pitting them against easy opponents. Mallow and Lana too often got their episodes interrupted Team Rocket or some other jobber villain for example, who they always beat effortlessly without taking a single hit. They were at least honest that beating up those wimps meant squat to Mallow and Lillie's experience in the end, but all the same, why have those hijack their plots over some actual development? I'd rather they shown Tsareena either fighting a real opponent or doing something relevent to Mallow's goals, or at least something with more agency than beating up the Meowth line very very easily over and over, or getting a 'power of really really wanting it' evolution after doing nothing to earn it. Only two moments she got were bonding with Shaymin and mastering the Z Move, both instances stemmed from advancing Mallow's character a little.

I do definitely feel they wanted to convey Lana as a battler to some level, but that only makes it more incredulous she never got an official battle until the league. Hell both her and Lillie expressed interest in the Battle Royal Dome but never took part.

Maybe I'm just sour because I was hoping TR's boosts in SM would make them a more dynamic opponent like in BW (albeit with their personalities kept this time). After all Alola already had a stand in for a jobber villain team. But no, TR just seldom used their Pokemon and Z moves, and remained a formulaic padding villain that didn't even offer a challenge to the trainers with zero battle experience.

In terms of the league itself however, I don't think that was breaking the series' code too much, the whole recurrent plot was the whole group taking part in something whether it was their forte or not. The theme throughout the league was that taking part and trying, not winning, was more honourable. Also it was an extra payback for Ash, who lost nearly every sport beforehand while one of the others aced it. Here it was Ash's turn to win while the others struggled. :p
 
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pacman000

On a quest to be the best...
Takeshi Shudo was a good writer, & having him on staff benefited the anime early on, but he was not without his faults. He could go off rails, so he needed other members of the production team to reign him in. Also, a lot of the darker stuff he came up with probably has more to do with his personal demons than any estimate of what would happen if Pokémon were real.
 

DatsRight

Well-Known Member
Takeshi Shudo was a good writer, & having him on staff benefited the anime early on, but he was not without his faults. He could go off rails, so he needed other members of the production team to reign him in. Also, a lot of the darker stuff he came up with probably has more to do with his personal demons than any estimate of what would happen if Pokémon were real.
I feel like Shudo's writing style might have worked as its own thing, but not as a more approachable adaptation of the games that the anime tends to want to be. I also think with this clash of ideas, the early episodes tended to be a bit too mean spirited, since a lot of the characters and premise still had its grittiness Shudo had planned, but lacked the humanizing lore behind it. Shudo wanted to deconstruct the Pokemon trainer occupation and make everyone desperate to achieve this flimsy goal and avoid being a washout. Of course since they didn't really want to convey the games' goal negatively, that was taken out, but not the characterisations for some time, and so everyone just seems to have a super nasty over defensive ego for no reason. It made sense in that regard for the writing to become more idealistic after a while.

In Shudo's plans for example the gym leaders were still gruff jerks who gave competitors a hard time, but desperate ones with some substance about them, since being a gym leader SUCKED and they could get fired after too many losses. With that element taken out in the final show, they were just adult swim-esque elitist jerks because 'ha ha meanness is funny'.
 
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SerGoldenhandtheJust

Remember: Eevee Taxi>Showcases & Best Girl Dawn <3
My overall problem with Mallow is that she slowly became 'the normal one' of the group quickly in and didn't have as much of an agency. Hell even in terms of comedy, Mallow tended to get the least gags and shirk from the slapstick antics more often than everyone else. I feel like the last season shown some progress in trying to fix this about her, she definitely got more to do in that one, even in terms of little character moments, but she still often felt like she struggled to get involved in a plot compared to Kiawe, Sophocles or even Lillie. You could often pair them with Ash and they'd still have a lot to do, even as a supporting character, while Mallow was too often reduced to the 'prop' character many other series had at least one of.


I feel like the problem was that they too often gave them the allusion of being strong by pitting them against easy opponents. Mallow and Lana too often got their episodes interrupted Team Rocket or some other jobber villain for example, who they always beat effortlessly without taking a single hit. They were at least honest that beating up those wimps meant squat to Mallow and Lillie's experience in the end, but all the same, why have those hijack their plots over some actual development? I'd rather they shown Tsareena either fighting a real opponent or doing something relevent to Mallow's goals, or at least something with more agency than beating up the Meowth line very very easily over and over, or getting a 'power of really really wanting it' evolution after doing nothing to earn it. Only two moments she got were bonding with Shaymin and mastering the Z Move, both instances stemmed from advancing Mallow's character a little.

I do definitely feel they wanted to convey Lana as a battler to some level, but that only makes it more incredulous she never got an official battle until the league. Hell both her and Lillie expressed interest in the Battle Royal Dome but never took part.

Maybe I'm just sour because I was hoping TR's boosts in SM would make them a more dynamic opponent like in BW (albeit with their personalities kept this time). After all Alola already had a stand in for a jobber villain team. But no, TR just seldom used their Pokemon and Z moves, and remained a formulaic padding villain that didn't even offer a challenge to the trainers with zero battle experience.

In terms of the league itself however, I don't think that was breaking the series' code too much, the whole recurrent plot was the whole group taking part in something whether it was their forte or not. The theme throughout the league was that taking part and trying, not winning, was more honourable. Also it was an extra payback for Ash, who lost nearly every sport beforehand while one of the others aced it. Here it was Ash's turn to win while the others struggled. :p
I can respect that. Mallow still didn't really feel 'normal' to me, she had her own quirks I appreciated and liked, and I just loved how wholesome and mom like she was, reminds me of a person close to me irl as well so that's an added bonus.
Also agreed with the TR point somewhat, while TR in Alola were amazing as characters, they could have been more of a trouble like BW was while still retaining their goofiness and characterization
 

DatsRight

Well-Known Member
I can respect that. Mallow still didn't really feel 'normal' to me, she had her own quirks I appreciated and liked, and I just loved how wholesome and mom like she was, reminds me of a person close to me irl as well so that's an added bonus.
Also agreed with the TR point somewhat, while TR in Alola were amazing as characters, they could have been more of a trouble like BW was while still retaining their goofiness and characterization
Fair enough. I feel like Mallow started off okay, she had more quirky energy and was more liable to make decisions among the group, but as Ash started to fit in as the leader among them, she got diluted. Ultra Legends gave a bit back to her, but she still felt underplayed to what she was in those first episodes. I still find it a shame she got so little screen time with Shaymin or they didn't do something more quirky with her chef business, like they have with so many COTD.

And yeah, truthfully it's why I tend not to be that interested in villain face offs in the show, since outside of BW and some of the more Looney Tunes-ish OS episodes, they mostly devolve into uninteresting curbstomps. TR are often compelling in terms of their own limelight in SM, especially since they had ongoing agendas to do there, but as antagonists they seemed largely just there to say 'well at least the students don't suck as much as these guys'.
 

janejane6178

Kaleido Star FOREVER in my heart <3
Lana’s design is boring and made only of blue. Who ever designed her heard of a thing called creativity?
 
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