the OG cartoon, from when it all started.
i have put off rewatching this show for years now purely because i watched it to death back when it was fresh and new and Pokemon was bigger than Korean Jesus. there was no way i was gonna like it as much as i did back then and even worse, it could end up like Voltron - way too corny and sloppily edited for an American audience to be watchable anymore.
nope! while i’ll never reach that high water mark of affection for the show i had back in elementary school i was pleasantly surprised by how well the first season has held up. it’s not perfect. the very early episodes have some inconsistent voice-acting (they used voice actors for James a few episodes in and Brock sounds way less emotional in his first episode even when compared to his very next appearance). that’s to be expected, i guess, of any show but it’s still weird to the ears.
the animation isn’t bad, but it hasn’t aged as well as likesay Zoids: New Century tho both are pretty light on plot. also, halfway thru the first season (somewhere around episode 24 or 25) they included the “We’ll be right back” eyecatches from when it was on TV. that’s fkin weird. each time i saw it was like “why? why would they keep that in there?”
also, Charmeleon’s still a dick.
those are small things though. overall the show is still as fun as it was back then and i noticed how clever the writing was as well. it’s not Marx Bros level of witty, but the amount of clever one-liners (especially the ones half-muttered under a character’s breath like Popeye) are not infrequent. same can’t be said for the occasional expositiony dumps you get almost once an episode. those are always clunky. also, the puns run the gamut from clever to groan-inducing, sometimes within seconds of each other.
also also, everyone is packing heat. what the fuck?
anyway, the first season (according to Instant Netflix) only goes so far. it ends around the Todd Snap (from Pokemon Snap, obvs) shows up.
it’s pretty rad though, the show is. except for the PokeRap. oy vey. that hasn’t aged well at all.