Episodes 75 and 76 Review

I’ve just got to say, writing those episodes were an absolute joy. It really gave me an opportunity to pull out all the stops and go all out.

I’ve was planning for these episodes for about a year. The idea first came to mind back when I was writing the franchise’s 20th anniversary episodes. I loved writing them so much, that I knew I had to take any chance I could to do something like it again, and I had to top it. I knew that the show came out a year after the games, meaning I had the show’s 20th anniversary coming up, so I started planning for it. My initial idea was simply Ash interacting with Ho-Oh in some way. I also wanted to do some sort of tribute to the first episode. The two ideas naturally developed into a time travel episode, and from there, the idea took on a life of its own and slowly grew to the state you saw it in. The idea of having the Celebi that sends Ash back in time be the Celebi contained within the GS Ball was actually a very last minute development that came to me while I was writing the episodes.

For those who don’t know, the GS Ball, which appeared in the show throughout the Orange Islands and the beginning of Johto, was originally planned to contain a Celebi in it, and was going to have an entire arc based around that Celebi. However, the decision to put Celebi in the movie Pokémon 4Ever led to that plot being removed from the main show. So the GS Ball was left with Kurt and forgotten about. I figured that a 20th anniversary special would be the perfect opportunity to finally resolve the GS Ball’s plot.

As far as this episode’s interactions with the past go, I actually re-watched the first episode a month ahead of time, and took note of every single unexplained event, and worked those into my plot. The two main examples being when Ash wakes up late and the thunderstorm. The problem with the scene with Ash waking up late, is that there is a crashing sound that wakes him up. They then show his broken alarm clock, inferring that it is him throwing his alarm clock that wakes him up. However, just before this scene, still in the middle of the night, the alarm clock is shown rolling into his hands in one scene, and then the next he in a post-throw position, inferring that he’s already thrown it. So if he threw and broke it in the middle of the night, what was the crash that woke him up? Apparently it was his future self and Cinder fighting. The thunderstorm has always irked me. The sky is completely blue, but out of nowhere, ominous storm clouds roll in and a thunderstorm starts. Where the heck did the storm come from? Since this is the Pokémon world, obviously a Pokémon is the answer. And since I’d already made a move that summons a thunderstorm, it seemed like the perfect solution.

As great as this episode was, I still had some disappointments about it. The biggest being the lack of Misty and Brock. Well, Brock technically had a few lines, so it was really just Misty. Sadly, there was just no way I could give Misty a role without messing with the canon. I just couldn’t make it happen. Brock would have been even harder to give a more substantial role, as he was far off in Pewter City. The other thing I really wanted to do was get the flock of Spearow that attacked Ash and Pikachu to play a role in this episode. My original idea was to somehow have Ash trick them into attack Fenghuang. This idea didn’t work out because the parallel placement of events meant that the Spearow were chasing past Ash at the same time present Ash was battling Fenghuang.

Finally to talk about, there’s the characters of Cinder and Ember. Having the children of Ash be the guest characters of this episode was also a relatively late development, but it worked wonders for the episode. I figured that if Ash really did become a Pokémon Master, then his children would probably treat him in one of two ways. Either they would worship him as a hero, or they would resent him and seek to step out of his shadow. The was the basis for the two characters. Through Ember’s eyes we saw her experience her father in a way she could never imagine, a time before he was “perfect.” Through Cinder’s we saw a more critical view of Ash and his current character. There’s way too many for me to discuss here, but I loaded these episodes with various reactions, actions, and words by these characters that can be analyzed to see a window into Ash’s future.

The Anime 20th Anniversary Background

As always, I like to make myself desktop backgrounds to commemorate special events, and as always, I’ll share it with you. This background depicts a scene containing all of the most influential characters from seven generations and 20 years of the show, all in one place for the first time. One important thing to note is that it contains your first look at the official character artwork for Brenda.

anime-anniversary-background

This background has been added to the Bonus Content page. For instructions on how to get this background for yourself, as well as several others, see that page.

Episode 50 Review

Suffice it to say that this episode only exists in the first place because I needed an excuse for Misty to appear for the past several episodes. But it developed into an episode with much more importance. One such factor was the introduction of Tyde. I’ve been wanting to introduce my Elite Four for a while now, but it is somewhat hard to get a good enough reason for them to show up. It’s kind of a shame the way that the Elite Four is normally shown in the show. Ash may have met all of the Kanto Elite Four, but it took up until the Battle Frontier to do so (and technically he didn’t even meet Lance as an Elite Four, but a Champion). He never met Koga as an Elite Four and never met Karen at all. In Hoenn he only met Drake and none of the others. In Unova only Caitlin appeared, and that wasn’t until towards the end of the region. And so far in Kalos Siebold and Malva have only appeared in the Mega Evolution Specials, not the main series, and Wikstrom got a tiny cameo in a movie. Sinnoh is the only region so far that handled its Elite Four well and introduced all of them over the course of the region. I hope to do the same.

Another point worth mentioning for this episode was Misty’s send-off. Of all of Ash’s travelling companions to have a goal, Misty is probably the one who made the smallest strides towards said goal. She did win the Whirl Cup, but that was really all she did. In her send-off I wanted to give her an even more major step. So beyond just having her win the Splash Cup, I gave her the set up that promises to make her into a true Water-Type master. That was a proper send-off for her I believe.

Episode 50: Splashing In

Check out the 50th episode of Cosmic Quest here!

Misty has at last brought Ash and the others to the world-famous Rest Stop Resort, home of the Splash Cup. Misty hopes to prove there beyond a shadow of a doubt that she has what it takes to become a true Water-Type master.

Also, the Tenno League and Pokédex pages have been updated accordingly.

Episodes 48 and 49: Attack of the Clones

A wild two-part episode appeared!

In this dramatic two-part 20th Anniversary Special, Ash, Brock, Brenda, and Misty travel to a new city and meet Gary Oak who has a surprise for Ash, a Pokémon tournament. But the tournament is interrupted by none other than Mewtwo! What happens when Ash and Mewtwo meet again? What will happen when Mewtwo faces its equal? And what is the Project Viginti that Mewtwo is so intent on finding? It’s two episodes celebrating 20 years of Pokémon history, and you don’t want to miss it!

Train on!

Episode 45 Review

This episode marks the beginning of a special 20th Anniversary arc that will conclude on the day of the anniversary. For a while I had been planning on bringing back Misty for the 20th Anniversary. My original idea was to do it just for one episode. At some point a few weeks ago though, I was thinking about how at least once a region, the show seems to introduce a temporary traveling companion that tags along with Ash and the gang for a few episodes. I figured I should probably make plans to do that at some point. When I started planning for this episode, I was trying to figure out who the side character should be. I figured it would be best for the episode if they were afraid of bugs. Then it clicked. Misty is afraid of bugs, I wanted to bring her in soon anyways, and she would be the perfect candidate for temporary travelling companion. It all fit together perfectly, so I made it happen. In my opinion, Misty’s return is something that really needs to happen at some point. I’m not saying she needs to return as a main character, but whether seeing her in something like Chronicles, or having her return as temporary companion in the show again would be really nice. It’s been so long, and we need to catch up with her.

On the other side of things, I’d like to talk about the design of my new Pokémon, Vespidron. The original idea for Vespidron came to me when I was young. Obviously as a young boy, when I saw that only female Combee could evolve, I thought this was unfair. When I started making my own Pokémon later, Vesidron was one of them. As opposed to going with a more stereotypical “Vespiking,” I thought that a drone would be a better representation of a beehive’s social structure and hence be more believable as a Pokémon. To reference the fact that Vespiquen is both a queen bee and a royal queen in design, I made Vespidron also act as a knight, furthering the analogy between a beehive and medieval society.

Train on!