Review of Pokemon Detective Pikachu (from someone who played the game, too!) (spoilers)

I went and saw Pokemon Detective Pikachu today. Let me start by saying it was better than I thought it would be! The Pokemon designs were integrated well and the humor, and action were pretty good. Before the movie was released I was concerned that it would have too much that lined up with the Detective Pikachu game but would change the details so much it would be weird to me, but I don’t think that was an issue. (In particular I noticed that the movie had a lot of characters who clearly corresponded to someone from the game but had a different Pokemon, but they were all different enough that it was clearly not meant to be 1:1 and really Detective Pikachu was the only character I’d say was in both the game and movie, even if Tim Goodman shared his name between them.) I liked what they did with the story, both in taking things from the game and making new plot points.

I have a friend who has been somewhat vocal about not liking the realistic designs of the Pokemon, saying they should be more cartoony like the original designs and it’d be fine just suspend your belief they’re cartoons they should look like cartoons just put ’em next to real humans! I for one am glad they went the direction they did, though. I think it looked really well–immediately I felt like those Pidgey or PIdgeotto or Pidgeot or whatever were a part of the real world, as were the Bouffalant. Bouffalant? They’re starting with later gens already, cool! It wasn’t always perfect, but it made it feel more real than Pokemon ever has been.

Now, the game had a pretty formulaic setup. It was divided into chapters, and each chapter generally ended and began with Tim going from the apartment to the police station and sometimes the cafe. (Oh, right, Ludicolo was the only other character who had the exact same role as the game. I’m a bit sad they didn’t make Ludicolo’s partner a character like in the game but I suppose that wasn’t really necessary.) Obviously the movie wouldn’t be styled like that so it makes more sense they were more on the own and apart from any authority here. The identity of the villain kind of reflects this, although in both cases it’s someone who acts like they’re helping but are actually misleading them.

Lickitung is precious and I love it. I hope the home release has an hour of deleted scenes with it.

When the original trailer released some people were like “ryan reynolds as pikachu??? how crazy!!” But it sounded completely normal as a Pikachu to me because I’d played the game where he had this super deep voice and it was way funnier. I think ultimately they made a good choice for the more serious moments–a silly deep voice works when Detective Pikachu is talking to you a lot but here I think it works. I was kind of vocal about liking the game’s voice more so this is a turn for me.

Mr. Mime was also amazing. Just make a sequel starring Lickitung and Mr. Mime. It was goofy and expressive, making it a bit more cartoony than most of the Pokemon in the movie, but given it was Mr. Mime I think that works.

The action was actually way better than I was expecting! I wasn’t expecting much action at all but I think it was done well and smoothly. This movie, being made to mimic the real world a lot more than the game, makes sense to have a seedy underbelly where there are Pokemon fights in a city where they’re not allowed. It made a lot of stuff more sinister, really–while the laboratory was clearly more of an evil operation, the laboratory in the game actually consisted of scientists doing good things, and there just happened to be one bad apple who discovered R.

One thing I actually wasn’t a fan of in the movie was the giant Torterra scene. I was talking with a friend afterwards though and I’m less harsh on it now. As much as I liked the action in the scene I felt it dragged on a little bit, but my main issue was that I felt these kaiju Torterra would BE EASILY NOTICED BY PEOPLE MAYBE?? But my friend points out it was probably Psyduck’s headache blast that woke them up, especially since they lay back down shortly after, so it makes enough sense for me to be okay with it in retrospect.

I was worried that Mewtwo was going to be made into the bad guy in the movie so I’m glad he wasn’t. (I tend to have an issue when a legendary is made the bad guy because they’re often shown as being one-of-a-kind, which means this Pokemon species is just evil. Just make it a random Pokemon like a Honchkrow or Shinx.) In the game it’s clear he had something to do with Harry’s disappearance and Pikachu’s loss of memories, but he’s just there to make sure R is all disposed of, so he’s definitely more of a presence in the movie. Also in the game R is purely made to increase Pokemon’s battle capabilities and sell it. When the dudes organizing that are stopped it’s all over, but surprise! We still don’t know what happened to Harry Goodman! But then the movie goes and introduces R as a way for humans and Pokemon to merge, which is no doubt how Harry and Pikachu merge to begin with. But the games? Well…

I have a friend who suggested that maybe they’d planned the game to be three episodes, as the full release included what was originally a separate release of the first few chapters, and that the third episode would have them find Harry and solve that mystery. Which makes me wonder–was the original plan to include this human-Pokemon merging as a plot point in the final episode of the game? Was the movie actually based on the game’s plot a lot more than it seems?

Half of this review is just me explaining differences in the game and movie and throwing out fan theories I guess. But ultimately I give this movie the approval of both an old Pokemon fan and a player of the Detective Pikachu game. They leaned into the Pokemon references without going so far that it got annoying. (Although I still think having Looker appear played by David Tennant would have been amazing.) It had decent action and humor and some good silliness here and there.

Now I hope they make a sequel where Detective Pikachu gets married and has a kid and then that kid gets merged with Pichu accidentally and it’s called Pokemon Detective Pichu! Make it happen, whatever company made this movie! I don’t remember!!

Odemon #577

Single
One
Lone
Only
SISter

-Odemon #577 Solosis

Odemon #409

New evidence of Rampardos fossils suggest that the Pokemon went extinct due to its tiny brain. This evidence includes Rampardos bones found in tar pits, skulls stuck in pickle jars, and incorrectly filed tax returns.

-Odemon #409 Rampardos

Odemon #43

Oddium Wanderus
Take a trip at night
Avoid the sun and instead
Grow by moonlight
Does that actually make sense?
I guess you could say like
Its too sensitive to warmth
But sunlight reflected by the moon’s all right
Oddium Wanderus
Stay in one place? Nah.
Wander at night, hide in soil at day
And if you’re pulled up go AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

-Odemon #43 Oddish

Princess Serani profile is up, and an announcement about old chapters

The princess of the Salenth Kingdom, Serani, gets her own profile page! She’s headstrong and not going to take anything from anyone and the gossip corner has all sorts of rumors about her and also the protagonist of Wandering Fortunes maybe wants to give her a smooch

ANYWAY, I’ve taken down old in-progress chapters for Slubes and Darmenzi. They’re old and I dunno that I want them public. They’re each *one dollar* as an ebook so it’s not a big deal. The previews of the final book are still up, though. It’s just that I’ve improved so much since these in-progress chapters I want to look forward. I don’t know if I’ll do this regularly, like every book’s serial release will eventually be made unavailable, maybe at some point they’ll be so good that I won’t even mind them being up. And at some point maybe Slubes and Darmenzi will just become free ebooks all the time. Who knows what the future holds!

However if I do hide unfinished Wandering Fortunes chapters they’ll still be available for patrons on Patreon. Slubes and Darmenzi would be too but I wasn’t posting chapters directly into Patreon back then it seems so those are just links to pages that don’t exist now. Anyway, speaking of Patreon, I’m gonna post another new profile on there today if you’re interested, and of course the next chapter is already available for patrons, so check it out if you have an interest in reading things and then reading more things!

Pokemon Moon Comic 105: Stat Boost

this is exactly how it happened in-game

 

Odemon #182

Bellossom gather, all as one,
Dance to summon the shining sun,
Dance to call the warm rays forth,
Joy to feel the sunlight–
YAWN
rain

Bellossom gather, all as one,
Dance to summon the shining sun,
Dance to–
YAWN
rain

Bellossom ga–
YAWN
rain

BELLOSSOM. GATHER. ALL. AS.
YAW–
*Bellossom all start beating up the Slowpoke*

-Odemon #182 Bellossom

Odemon #225

Up on the mountaintop so cold it’s absurd
Down flies good old Delibird
Flying through the snow with lots of food
Throwing it at people, that’s kind of rude
Honk, honk, honk! Who wouldn’t go.
Honk, honk, honk! Who wouldn’t go,
Up on the mountaintop, flap, flap, flap;
Through the snow flies this delivery chap.
First comes the stocking of Pokemon attacks;
Oh, dear Delibird fill this sack!
Give it a Present that heals and booms.
And apparently now you can learn Drill Peck, too?
Honk, honk, honk! Who wouldn’t go.
Honk, honk, honk! Who wouldn’t go,
Up on the mountaintop, flap, flap, flap;
Through the snow flies this delivery chap.
Next comes the stocking of ability;
What has Delibird for it? Let’s see;
Hustle to fight, Vital Spirit to awake;
Insomnia for redundancy’s sake!
HONK HONK HONK
WHO WOULDN’T GO
HONK HONK HONK
WHO
WOULDN’T
GO

-Odemon #225 Delibird

Odemon #455

Tentacles grasp
Hanging from a branch
Looks like a plant
But actually a… plant
Carnivine!
Drool chomp smack
Carnivine!
Levitates for some reason

-Odemon #455 Carnivine

Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmail accepting submissions!

So for a while now I’ve had a goal on my Patreon where I start “Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmail” which would be a comic series where people (like you!) send emails to characters in the Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmos and they get answered in a little comic story. For various reasons I’ve changed that to “regularly update” and am going ahead with this crazy thing. This will not be drawn by me, but by a talented artist, possibly rotated.

You can send a message to any character from the Cloudy Cuckoo Cosmos and I’ll choose one for each comic. (There’s a list of major characters here, but I’ll accept messages to even the most minor of characters.) You can ask a character something specific to them or a story they appeared in, something generic (like Top’s favorite brand of chips or whatever), or you don’t even have to ask a question, I dunno, do what you want, I’m not asking the questions here. Other characters may appear as well depending on the message, so feel free to ask about other characters in your email! Plus some of them don’t even have internet access, so like, I’m gonna have to reroute any emails Numer gets to Zeth and have him deliver them…

I would prefer receiving the emails at my actual email, dutholec at cloudycuckoocosmos.com, for ease of keeping track, but I’ll consider ones sent in the comments or on Mastodon or Twitter or Patreon or wherever! Just format it how it would look as an actual email so it can appear as such in the comic. Also, have fun with it, because that’s my goal regardless.