I want to add this (albeit late) because I think there are some issues that came up in class that need clarification. I want to start by saying that my comments in class were in no way an attack on Sean or anyone else who enjoys Pokemon, nor were they an attack on the industry as a whole. I want to point out, however, that I was simply trying to introduce to everyone that there is a “business” involved.
The following is taken from the wikipedia article on Pokemon (obviously not an authority, but I checked all citations and they are accurate):
Pokémon (ポケモン, Pokemon?, IPA: [ˈpoʊ.keɪ.mɑn]) is a “MEDIA FRANCHISE” owned by video game giant Nintendo and created by Satoshi Tajiri around 1995. Originally released as a pair of interlinkable Game Boy role-playing video games, Pokémon has since become the “second most successful and LUCRATIVE video game-based media franchise in the world”, falling only behind Nintendo’s Mario series. Pokémon properties have since been MERCHANDISED into anime, manga, trading cards, toys, books, and other media. The franchise celebrated its tenth anniversary on 27 February 2006, and as of 1 December 2006, cumulative sold units of the video games (including home console versions, such as the “Pikachu” Nintendo 64) have reached more than 155 million copies.
I have put in caps and quotations things that I want to point out in this introduction that will emphasize my point. I believe a short lesson from my economics course is also in order. Nintendo is a firm, concerned with maximizing profits. Any firm that does not have this as it’s priority is known as a “former firm” (bad joke). Pokemon is a fully marketed franchise that is done so with the purpose of maximizing returns for the company. In doing this, they have created a franchise that is highly entertaining and enjoyable for many, yet it is not given out for free BECAUSE the reason they created this franchise is because they (Nintendo) saw it as being a profitable activity.
My concluding point is that, while we have engaged in these long heated debates about “the world of Pokemon” and how it is all these important things to all these important people, we must understand that it is still a business and it has been marked to market quite effectively. THIS IS NOT INTENDED AS AN ATTACK ON POKEMON! I am not trying to take any value from it as I know there are many people to whom it is of significant importance and meaning. I have things that are important to me as well in a similar manner. I love the Pirates of the Carribean series and particularly the character of Jack Sparrow, but I know that he is not a real character and that Johnny Depp does enjoy playing this role but is not doing it for free. Because of his desire to maximize his profitability, he has given me something of importance. It is the way the world works. Please do not attack my view as being overly “business oriented” although this is the background I can bring to the class, but try to understand what I am saying and acknowledge the facts.
Finally, I went on youtube and did watch an episode of pokemon for my own edification. The protagonist (Ash) was batteling this guy named Brock I think and he had a huge rock snake named Onyx. I was quite entertained and yes, think had I grown up with it, I could perhaps still be interested.
Nicely done Nintendo.