Detective Pikachu's Trailer Divides Pokémon Fans

Damien McFerran

14/11/2018 – 8:51am

Deadpool is Pikachu?

Warner Bros. recently launched the first trailer for Detective Pikachu, the first-ever live-action Pokémon movie, and the footage has predictably divided fans of the series who, up until now, have been used to seeing their Pocket Monsters rendered either in pixels or cartoon-form.

The movie – which launches next year – focuses on a talking Pikachu and his bond with a young boy named Tim Goodman who is desperate to find out what happened to his missing father. It’s loosely based on the Nintendo 3DS game that released last year in the West, and features Ryan Reynolds of Deadpool fame as the voice of the title character. Justice Smith – last seen in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom and Netflix flop The Get Down – plays the role of Pikachu’s human companion Tim. Kathryn Newton and Ken Watanabe are found in supporting roles.

The trailer was packed to the rafters with ‘mon, including some terrifyingly life-like versions of Mr. Mime, Jigglypuff and Charizard, and it is these creatures which have caused so much discussion within Pokémon fandom. Transferring cartoon characters to live-action isn’t easy, but we actually think they’ve done a decent job; Pikachu, in particular, looks adorable, and the fact that he has Reynold’s wise-cracking voice just seems to add to the character.

However, some fans have taken to social media to call the movie “grotesque” and “disgusting”, which just goes to show you can’t please everyone all of the time. However, others have pointed out that had they not added so much fur, the monsters might look like disturbing fleshy blobs, which is a fair point.

The Pokémon series started way back in 1996 on the black and white Nintendo Game Boy handheld, and has been a constant stream of revenue for Nintendo and The Pokémon Company ever since. There have been several animated movies, a whole host of TV shows and more merchandise than you can shake a stick at.

And of course, there has been a steady flow of video games since the ’90s too, with the smartphone title Pokémon GO bringing the franchise to a whole new audience in 2016. Pokémon: Let’s Go: Pikachu and Pokémon: Let’s Go: Eevee are the two lastest console-based instalments and they arrive on the Nintendo Switch this week – which makes the release of this trailer all the more ingenious.

Detective Pikachu hits cinemas on May 10th, 2019 and is directed by Rob Letterman, the man behind the likes of Goosebumps, Shark Tale and Monsters vs. Aliens.

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