Is it just me or is Hoenn the lost region of the Poke-world? I’m sitting here looking at the list of towns, gym leaders, elite four members and Pokemon and to be honest with you despite being a borderline obsessive fan I have literally no idea who half of them are. Who are “Tate and Liza”? “Pheobe” anyone? No didn’t think so. When was the last time you saw an “Exploud”? That one episode 6 years ago? I don’t even remember it myself. I had to google it.
On a side note, with all the fuss over generation fives crappy designs people seemed to forget that Exploud and its pre-evolution Loudred are actually based on boom box’s! Yes, those music players from the 70’s. Atleast everybody knows what ice cream is. I doubt anyone actually playing Pokemon is aware that boom box’s existed. To be fair that is stil a step above a trash bag. But still!
Exploud is just one example of the various Hoenn pokemon that are long forgotten (Manectric?), and thats probably the reason why everyone hated gen five, because they had forgotten that pokemon had already had a failed generation. The only difference being that the Hoenn generation was saved by the fact that out of the Hoenn dex’s 200 pokemon, 100 of them were from Kanto and Johto. Who’s pokemon could save any generation.
So I played Sapphire and loved it. I remember sitting there with my Gameboy Advance SP, which is identicle to the DS funnily enough, with my Treecko and Tailow, eventually ending up with Sceptile and Swellow. Who to be fair are two of my favourite pokemon nowadays. Aside from that fond memory I don’t remember a single thing about it. Yet I can still remember the first time I beat the pokemon league on Blue! I’m currently playing White and am so eager to trade in Bulbasaur. Evidence would suggest that the Pokemon creators opinions arn’t too different to my own.
Anime wise the Indigo league (Kanto) was the base and a incredibly solid starting point that absolutely no one can fault. This ushered in The Orange League, and then later the Johto League. Which was an incredible step forward and one that looking back on is actually incredible, to take the first series, something that became legendary in itself, and then to do a new one and not lose any momentum? That’s impressive!
However Hoenn did not do the same. It was weak, despite mudkips internet fame. The loss of Misty and the addition of May and Max did not sit well with me. Misty was genius. Her character was fun to watch and in perfect balance with Ash and Brock. May was just a default girl character, completely unnecessary other than to say to the female fans “Hey we care about you too!” and Max didn’t even have that to his name. He was utterly pointless. I dare anyone to give me a reason for him. With Pikachu being the only returning Pokemon from previous regions to do anything note worthy there was absolutely nothing to save the weak story lines and poor characters.
At the end of the Saga in Hoenn there was a voice actor re-cast. Now every one envolved with the decision knew this wasn’t going to go down well. So what did they do? In the following series they sent the protagonists back to Kanto! They knew that nobody could handle the new (and awful) voices along side the personality-less and abismal pokemon designs. (Deoxys) Sinnoh picked up the slack in a big way. Piplup did it’s very best to become some what of a second Pikachu and almost made it. He held together plenty of episodes with his hilariously unfortunate ways and his personality had so much depth to it. Something that was missing from the entirety of Hoenn. Depth.
Dawn with her rise to fame as a co-ordinator was a welcome change from Mays lack luster attempts, Brocks Croagunk replacing Max really sums up how much he was worth as a person. Ash’s Chimchars quest to bitch slap Paul for ditching him stretching across the entire season and culiminating at the Pokemon League was actually some what heart wrenching. I couldn’t name one thing about Hoenn that actually has the same amount of character.
Which fills me with fear. The Pokemon people aren’t ones to change their ways. As much as I love the series and the games they are essentially rehashes of each other with a few new shiney whistles and bells attached. Which could mean bad times for us all! In the last two series they have revisited previous regions pokemon to tie in with the release of remakes of the games. In Hoenn they went back to Kanto. May caught a Bulbasaur and a Squirtle, and they made a big deal of the Kanto Pokemon. As whilst they were airing the Hoenn season they released Fire Red and Leaf Green, remakes of the Japanese origionals.
In Sinnoh later on in the series Dawn recived a Cyndaquil. They introduced some characters that had Totodile and Chikorita and made a big thing of the Johto Pokemon. To tie in with the release of Soul Silver and Heart Gold. Now we’re in Unova. Logic suggests that they will return to Hoenn at somepoint. Which the the very thought of sends a tingle of fear up my spine. I dont hate the SOME of the new pokemon by any means. Tepig being one of my newest favourites ever, but can you imagine a boom box vs a trash bag? Or Deoxys vs Thundurus. (A space…thing… alien? Vs a muscley moustache weilding cloud… god?) I fear we may be blindly walking towards the worst thing to happen to Pokemon since Ash released Butterfree.
Feel free to prove me wrong though. Maybe I just don’t get Hoenn, but what is there to get?
Tags: Hoenn Region