The new Pokémon movie has angered hardcore fans after Pikachu speaks English
For those of us who grew up watching Pokémon, you know there are a few fundamental truths to the Japanese show: Ash Ketchum will never catch 'em all, Team Rocket has the best theme song of all time, and the scariest Pokémon of all is Jigglypuff, hands down. But the number one rule is, of course, that Pokémon don't speak human languages.
More specifically, they are only able to utter their own names. Especially before a battle, they'll announce their names in a cry of combat, usually in supremely high-pitched, kawaii voices.
So now people are upset, and I mean really upset about something that happened in the latest movie, Pokémon The Movie: I Choose You. They did the unspeakable, and let a Pokémon... speak.
It's near the end of the film, and Ash and his trusty sidekick Pikachu have been left injured after a huge Pokémon battle. Ash asks Pikachu why he wouldn't retreat back into his Pokeball and, and... just take a look for yourself - courtesy of some sneaky dude who filmed an NYC screening of the film on his phone.
Well I never.
You can clearly hear the audience left utterly aghast after Pikachu answers Ash's dying question (oops, spoiler alert). "[I] always wants to be with you," stutters a frightened little Pikachu, to which you can hear people in the audience sharply intaking, gasping with shock, and one guy exhaling with "no!" in clear distress. Another person just keeps repeating "What? What?!" in tormented disbelief.
The original film is of course in Japanese, and in the same scene, Pikachu speaks Japanese. Strangely enough, Japanese audiences didn't have the same distraught reaction.
Kate Bristol, who is the voice of Pikachu in the English version, spoke to The Guardian Australia about the move to make Pikachu speak human language. She said she understands why fans are shocked, saying, “I know a lot of people might think it’s out of the ordinary for Pikachu to speak English. It’s definitely out of the ordinary."
"It was hilarious being in the theater with the rest of the cast and hearing the audience’s reaction as a huge collective ‘What?’ rose up."
And now after the initial shock has subsided, people have questions. Was it all in Ash's imagination, as implied by the blurred focus we see from Ash's point of view as Pikachu speaks? Or could Pikachu speak all along? What does that MEAN? How would it make Ash feel, after all this time?
The Twitterverse wants to get to the bottom of it:
And others are just simply appalled by it all.
But this guy truly sums it all up:
The (possible) revelation that Pikachu could speak human all along has clearly left people shook, and it could come down as one of the most controversial moments in Pokémon history.