I think yesterday evening (or was it morning, I don't remember) Sakib and I were brainstorming through movie ideas for me to write on as I consider this quite out of my comfort zone.
This got me thinking what is something that I'd enjoy even when I'm 60. There are a lot of obvious choices...the godfather movies, something like Prison break....FRIENDS for light-hearted comedy. But I was thinking something more unorthodox....something that probably wouldn't be everyone's cuppa at 60.
Pokemon was an easy choice. Yes, pokemon the cartoon. I'd very gladly watch the pokemon cartoons all over, hopefully with my grand-kids when I'm 60.
I don't know. I can try an come with a lot of BS and make myself sound like I understand a thing or two about producing, directing, story writing etc. But the truth is I don't know.
I watched it once on Cartoon Network when I was 4 or 5 and i never stopped watching it ever since! My daily schedule used to be planned to accommodate the 30 mins of pokemon between 5-5:30 pm every monday to fridays. I even rescheduled my arabic tutor's "appointments" LOL! The addiction was real.
I guess the extremely delicate designs on each pokemon was directed at getting kids glued to the screen! The bright colors of Lapras comes to mind for some reason!
But the sentiment of a young kid, leaving home to make a name of his own is too hard to ignore at that age. The sense of freedom, and traversing through the wilds looking for adventure is what every kid at that age dreams of....knowingly or unknowingly. It was a way of living the dream in a fantasy land, even if it was just for 30 minutes a day. It was mesmerizing. The characters were fictional, but the sense of freedom was as real as it gets.
I vividly remember imagining our front yard garden and the open field right in front of our house to have different layout at different time....sometimes they were a forest with burrows and dens for different breeds of pokemon. Sometimes they were mountains and valleys for some of the legendary pokemons (yes, legendary creatures were already cool 20 years before splinterlands introduced them to the blockchain :D).
Pokemon was a generational sensation of sorts not just because of the way the stories were written, but because of the way it opened the horizons of imaginations in kids of our generation. We knew very well they are not real, but pokemon taught that generation of kids it's okay to dream. This contrast becomes quite sharp when we compare with the crap kids of the current generation is watching. I mean, DAFUQ!
I sometimes sit and watch cartoons my nieces watch these days, and it's mostly cheap crowd pleasing crap. It's all happy endings and happy endings!
Ash never won the Pokemon league. Every time it broke my heart, but every time I learned to deal with it....since I was 6 or 7 years old. You don't realize these tiny details at that age of course, but as an adult it makes Pokemon all the more special!
Even to this day it makes me tear up a little to think of the episode where Ash has to let Charizard go to be the free creature it was meant to be...to be with his own kind. This was significant on many levels. The writers let Charizard go only after charizard started forming a real bond with Ash first, makes the goodbye even more meaningful, and hurtful. It was almost as if to say, everything that is great doesn't necessarily last forever. To an adult reading this who has never watched pokemon...this will be "gajakhuri" of the most elegant weed! But the sentiment that episode spread was very, very real. The heaviness in our hearts the next day at school was physically palpable!
The reason I chose to speak of this specific episode today is, there was a very important and relevant lesson to be learned : Freedom comes at a price.
If you can't understand it without an explanation, you can't understand it with an explanation. - Haruki Murakami, 1Q84