Pokemon - Cute and Cool
Pokemon is a phenomenon and kids are going crazy over it. Around the core video game, there is a whole solar system of spinoffs: Pokemon plush toys (Pokemon stuffed toys), pokedolls, Pokemon Zuken and Tomy figures, Pokemon cards and a whole multi-category within that such as legendary Pokemon cards, promo cards, and holofoil cards, not to mention the huge profits being made off the media of Pokemon DVD's, movies, and the TV series. What is it about a computer game that has taken off this big? It even has celestial epochs: we're now in the Age of the Pokemon Black and White. But most of the kids buying these goods aren't even actually playing the video game itself! That seems to be another phenomena altogether (for Nintendo, number two behind Super Mario).
For my middle-aged generation, the attractiveness of Pokemon is a little hard for me to get a grasp on. If Pikachu is cute, then why is he capable of such destructive force? And if he is so lethal, then why is he so cute? But I must retract all that really, for I can't find Pokemon in their animated incarnation to be either cute, or cool. Perhaps for my generation, Pokemon just don't have an appeal to us. We can't figure out what they stand for.
When I was child Japan was obviously not selling video games but they were writing and creating animation as well as drama. And what little of it got to America I as a little girl even loved. First, there was Ultraman. The monsters were grotesque, Ultraman himself was a hero but ugly too, and it was pure good vs. evil. Monsters came from outer space and Ultraman protected humanity from them. I remember one cute monster that was the size of small person and was covered with long strands of weird hair (hard to explain). But even that monster, though likable, was pretty ugly. My generation pretty much figured that monsters should be ugly. Pokemon seem like they lack monster hormones or something. Just to mention it, there was also Speed Racer (great story- who can forget Spridal and Chim Chim- and who was Racer X really?). The Mach 5 was way cool. What little girl wouldn't like that? Ash can't hold a candlewick to Speed!
In any case, Pokemon is cool and times and tastes have changed. It seems we live in an age in which morals, good, evil, and heroism are much more blurred than we 'simpler' kids were. We just wanted to see the bad guy get it- not monsters fight it out in tournaments. Perhaps kids are more sophisticated these days. I do know that as a science fiction fan I do think Pokemon has potential, though by capitalizing on that they'd probably alienate their audience. Pokemon - Cute and Cool - Fluser General Business Directory - Business Directory