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Thoughts on Pokemon Journeys

Discussion in 'Pokémon General' started by Gazi, Jul 3, 2020.

  1. Gazi

    Level 36
    May 27, 2018
    Dawn Stone ★★★★Legendary Triforce ★★Reaper Cloth ★★★
    I've just started to watch Pokémon Journeys on Netflix, and as much as I was looking forward to it, I'm kinda underwhelmed. I guess this is how people felt when they watched XY and then shifted to Sun/Moon.
    I want to like Pokémon Journeys, and I have reasons to believe that I'll enjoy it more as more episodes get added, but right now, I'm just bothered by it, and I'm wondering if I'm the only one. And, you know, I kinda wanna vent about my disappointment.

    I have two major issues with Pokémon Journeys, the first one being Goh. He's just not a character I'm into. He's too much like Ash, which could work if there was a third companion who was traveling with them (Chloe doesn't exactly count, because she's barely in the show at the point I'm at). Goh's goal, while relatable for a bunch of players of the games, is just boring to watch. I mean, we got an entire episode of a kid just throwing pokeballs at Pokémon. It's not fun, and it's so frustrating how 95% of the time Goh catches his Pokémon without battling them, and with his very first Pokéball, which makes it even less interesting to watch. And for reasons that I don't understand, Goh's Pokémon all adore him from the very second he catches them. It's great that they're happy, but I would love to see him actually train them and earn their respect and love. And his know-it-all personality just bothers me. You can have a smart character who has more to their character than being the smart guy who does everything for the sake of research.

    My second issue with the show, which I'm really hoping will get better later, is that we don't see a lot of the characters bonding with their Pokémon. We got a little bit of it with Goh and Scorbunny, in the episode where he caught it, but very little since then. Ash's confidence in Mimey when he wanted to battle with him was great, but we see very little of Mimey interacting with Ash beyond that, which was really disappointing, because I was really looking forward to seeing Mimey and Ash. Dragonite and Ash are nice, but where I'm at in the show, we've only seen them with each other a handful of times. The whole reason why I love Pokémon so much is because I love seeing the great relationships between people and Pokémon (which is why I love the Diamond/Pearl episodes so much), and I just feel like Pokémon Journeys isn't delivering on that front.

    I've only seen the first twelve episodes though. I'm hoping that as Ash catches more Pokémon, we'll see more of him actually interacting with them, which should make things better. As for Goh...I don't actually have high hopes for him. Maybe I'll be pleasantly surprised, but I'm not counting on it.

    Anyways, I want to know how you guys feel about this season so far. Are you loving it? Are you underwhelmed? Why?
  2. Jupjami

    Jupjami Time Gear Thief

    Level 87
    May 31, 2018
    Leaf Stone ★★★Dragon Scale ★★★Darkinum Z ★★★★Dragon Fang ★★★★Reaper Cloth ★★★
    I generally have little a qualm about Journeys; the fresh start and Satoshi's mentor-like character is quite appealling to many a fan~ The only problem I can say so far is the current series doth not delve much into the previous generations; if not for PJ025 we wouldn't even know Satoshi's journey from Hoenn to Kalos was still canon, and we still don't know the fate of the SM series! (I mean, he's the bloody Champion of Alola; wouldn't at least one person point it out?) We see none of his previous Pokémon save for Mr. Mime, so 'tis quite disappointing... Nonetheless, the series is awesome, and I shall continue subscribe to Pokémon 2019~
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  3. Skittle

    Skittle daijoubu

    Level 23
    Jan 12, 2017
    Comet Shard ★★★★Dawn Stone ★★★★Love Ball ★★★★★Galladite ★★★★Whipped Dream ★★★★
    since ive been making little gripes and quips about the series on my profile i figured id find this thread again and type my harvard essay on why *ahem*


    "wtf skittle thats a very bold claim to make considering best wishes exists" yes and for the first time in anyones life the words "best wishes is better than x" can be said. best wishes is better. BEST WISHES IS BETTER?????? HOW DID OLM MESS UP THIS BAD well lets get into the essay

    (i will be talking about spoilers so this means anything past episode 36!! i'll do my best to hide said spoilers)

    Pokémon 2019, or Pokémon journeys as its known outside japan, is the 7th series of the Pokémon anime that started airing in late 2019. this is the first series to feature a "double protagonist" duo, ash ketchum and goh (although id like to argue may and dawn did it first, but moot point as this is about jourenys). instead of being tied down to the generations region, ash and goh travel around the world as "research fellows" and meet all kinds of Pokémon while pursuing their respective goals: ashs to become a Pokémon master, and gohs to catch every Pokémon and eventually mew. this series was INCREDIBLY hyped due to the fact that anyone from ashs many adventures in the past can show up, his team could feature ANY Pokémon he hasnt caught yet, and so forth. but does Pokémon journeys keep its promise and give us a fanservice buffet and double dose serving of action considering ash won his first Pokémon league in the prior series??


    now credit where credit is due: the animation is great (half the time), the voice acting is good, and although few, the little continuity references are nice. it also brings a few interesting ideas to the table, and while MANY do not land, the few that do are decent enough to allow a free pass from my wrath. these include the CONCEPT of the world coronation series, the character designs for the cotds, and seeing regions we havent seen in a while along with some old friends.

    but the first thing we must mention is the characters!! of course we have ash ketchum return in his immortal 10 year old state ready to take the world by storm!! and by that i mean get completely sidelined by our newest character and so called "co protangonist" beside ash, Pokémon go(h)!! more about goh later but regarding ash..... if you through best wishes was ooc get ready for journeys. he barely does anything!! even with his goal of competing in the world coronation series is MASSIVLY sidelined to do what?? watch goh catch Pokémon?? watch filler episodes about + - a Pokémon eating competition and his lucario get lost in castelia city?? he battles bea again in episode 39 and the next wcs battle?? EPISODE FIFTY FREAKING ONE. surely all that filler was more important to his goal, which i may add has mostly been advanced OFF SCREEN. we dont even get to see him battle!!!   his goal isnt being handled well AT ALL. and his Pokémon suffer in return!! remember gengar?? me neither. + - and the writers sure dont!! wait until the darkest day arc to see it again, yknow it first major appearance after visquez over 20 episodes ago at that point. and PLEASE dont get me started on the lucario pandering. i know everyone wanted him to have one since the mew movie, but GOD im tired of seeing this damn jackal every series. cameron, korrina, and now ash?? looks like olm thinks all our favorite Pokémon are lucario and you cant say otherwise!!   did ash even catch a farfetchd?? or did he just REALLY need a throwaway for bea?? who knows......

    who is this goh i keep mentioning, anyway? the anime isnt using any gen 8 characters as companions this time around and is using a boy named goh whos goal is to catch all the Pokémon and eventually mew. this isnt a TERRIBLE goal in premise: pokemons old slogan was "gotta catch em all" so EVENTUALLY we'd have a character who wants to catch said all Pokémon. but the way they handle gohs goal is......... complete garbage. he throws pokeballs and gets 90% of what he wants on the first try without much effort on his part. can that be considered goal progression if he never faces roadblocks and has to struggle to make victory that more well deserved?? NO!!! i know goh is either loved or hated and to be clear this isnt a "goh bashing" seminar because i genuinely like how his character grows and how he starts as reclusive but later gains a new ash spunk!! but just because i like a characters GROWTH doesnt mean i have to like the character as....... a character. hes Pokémon go propaganda. + - and of course i HAVE to mention the latest episode where he catches a DAMN SUICUNE. IN A Pokéball. his goal is being WAY too rushed and he never has to struggle to get whatever he throws a ball at so he really doesnt deserve suicune!! i wouldnt have a SINGLE problem if this was episode 150 or whatever because at that point maybe goh would show himself strong and competent enough to catch a legendary, but 53????? NO. for reference, BOTH may and dawn who were kinda co protags in their own rights had ONE RIBBON each by episode 53 of their respective series. and dawn had a losing streak by this point, so she actually struggled like may!! i shall now refer to him as "goh-ry stu" for the rest of this review.   and you would think with all these Pokémon, theyd all have personality, right??? awww how cute of you to think they do THEY DONT!!! his main Pokémon, raboot + - and later cinderace, but both evolutions i can gripe about in one fell swoop   evolve despite goh not training it and even liking battles himself. sobble does nothing but look cute and cry. the rest of his Pokémon are lab fodder and never seen again outside their capture episodes. this is long but tldr: gohs goal is boring to watch, he hardly has to struggle to reach his goal and often gets whatever he chucks a ball at, his Pokémon never develop, and despite being a technically well rounded character hes simply not interesting. at all. and without spoiling too much of whats past episode 36?? hes coming off as a SERIOUS writers pet.

    what about team rocket?? theyve been done so dirty. one of our favorite things about team rocket was the Pokémon theyd catch and form incredible bonds with. james is one of my favorite characters in the anime due to this!! but in journeys, the rocket gacha machine was introduced and simply allows the trio to use rented Pokémon from giovanni. and it SUCKS. gone are the wholesome and heartbreaking moments between jessie, james, and their partners, but throwaway Pokémon that makes them incredibly predictable and boring. this is coming off of sun and moon, arguably team rockets BEST series. all they have is a morpeko that follows them and even then it does nothing. i dont even need to spoiler anything here. team rocket is so underutilized and bland and i cant be bothered to type more about this theres nothing else to say.

    last character is chloe!! shes the saving grace of this group. i love her development of how she doesnt seem to care much about Pokémon to becoming more interested in them!! + - she even catches an eevee later, and despite the eevee pokegirl trope being old at this point the fact that her eevee cant evolve because shes not sure which eeveelution to evolve into is a great parallel to chloe, who is unsure of her own path. she even starts joining ash and goh on their adventures!! i just wish she was utilized more despite that, but shes getting a focus episode soon so fingers crossed!!  

    characters out of the way, yay!! so whats the story of Pokémon journeys?? well, its about travelling the world, and staying in kanto NINETY DAMN PERCENT OF THE TIME. over half the episodes have been in kanto. ignoring setting, whats the end goal?? well, ash wants to beat leon in the world coronation series and goh wants to catch em all. too bad the overall "series" of journeys is held together by duct tape, string, and a prayer. an example would be the ash vs bea arc. ash gets wiped by bea in episode 34, and hes depressed because hes dropped back to the normal class of the wcs. the next episode?? hes genki genki la la la in a forest helping goh catch a pikachu, acting like theres nothing wrong. episode 36 and NOW hes depressed???? just..... no!! + - the next two episodes have him going back to alola and digging up fossils acting like NOTHING IS WRONG before rematching bea in episode 39. this is SO jarring to see ash happy, then depressed, then happy AGAIN. it just doesnt make sense from a writing standpoint!! and the darkest day arc...... ugh. no buildup to who chairman rose is, and we're expected to care about this. why now, only 40 episodes in?? yeah its nice to get a coherent storyline for once...... but its just so sudden that i have no reason to care about what happens to galar if eternatus isnt stopped. they wasted the climax of the sword/shield storyline this early and it pains me because we wont get to have an epic high stakes conflict like the galactic or flare arcs. we havent even seen any galar leaders besides bea for some reason!! they seriously refuse to show us galar.  

    nitpick speedround because my fingers are getting tired!! the animation in the second half drops off DRAMATICALLY and is very sloppy: especially after sm which had some of the best animation in the FRANCHISE, any former friends ash sees are severely underutilized showing up for an episode each (HASHTAG LANCE DESERVED BETTER), you cant tell which region theyre in by looks because backgrounds are bland and uninteresting, and theres so much random useless filler watching this series feels more like a chore than a joy. the battles are quick and boring. gohs captures are quick and boring. its a slog to get through twenty minutes of padding with no real reward because barely any episodes are strung together in a coherent way. ash and gohs spotlight and feature time is HEAVILY skewed towards goh that we really forget what ashs goal is this series.

    i think ive covered all my biggest gripes. and with all considered...... best wishes is better and im NOT joking. there was a story there, even if it was hastily rewritten due to the tsunami!! it had a clear end goal we could look forward to, and we would get to see ash actually battle instead of the narrator saying he did so off screen!! ashs Pokémon were full of personality and apart from a few exceptions, they were mostly used evenly instead of ash relying on the fandoms biggest shillmon. journeys can be best compared to the declore islands arc of best wishes imo: what the hell is this, what am i watching, oh god make it end. its filler. CONSTANT filler with no reward. just a goh capture youre supposed to feel excited about but the endorphin rush ended long long ago. and the worst part?? journeys had SO MUCH potential!! making ash and gohs homebase magnolias lab instead of some random guys lab in vermillion city wouldve shown us more galar and more new exciting places, battles with dynamax, and whatnot + - while fixing what makes the darkest day arc so weak.   but lo and behold, the potential was wasted on clickbaity filler episodes, a complete botchery and character assassination of the 10 year old we've come to love for the past two decades, and a sense that the writers arent focused on a real long term storyline but more of a "hey what if we did this" situation. Pokémon journeys has had an incredibly rough first year, and with all things considered, i cant say i have much hope for what lies ahead.

    watch diamond and pearl and stan dawn. be nice to urself just do it
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