In 1996, Pokemon was released by Nintendo and it instantaneously became a craze to kids. They would skip school, beg their parents or steal, and queue for hours to get their hands on trading cards which were eventually banned by schools.
Pokemon reached its climax in 1999. It was featured on the cover of Time Magazine and people were enlightened with Pokemania, the term used to describe the fanaticism of people to the game franchise. But just like any other fad, it was eventually relegated to the sidelines.
Nevertheless, Pokemon was able to preserve a devoted fandom that in due course, it was projected as the all-time highest-grossing media franchise. With the upcoming release of Pokemon’s first ever live-action film Detective Pikachu this month, people are expecting for Pokemania to resurface. The movie is predicted to set a new record in cinemas.
Bill Nighy who plays the entrepreneur-anthropologist Howard Clifford in the movie, says that he was clueless about Pokemon at first but after researching about it, he fell in love with it and is already part of the Pokefandom. In fact, he confessed that he now owns a limited-edition Pikachu and even has Pokemon pieces in his house. His favorite Pokemon? Mew, whom he describes as powerful, majestic, and elegant.
Pokemon creator Satosi Tajiri developed the game with the vision of kids exploring a fictional region while trying to catch, train, and battle 151 Pokemons. He intended for the Pokemons to be collected and swapped.
It was in 1990 when he first proposed the game to Nintendo. On February 1996 in Japan, the Pokemon Red and Green for Nintendo Game Boy was released. The game made an international debut as Pokemon Red and Blue in 1998, along with the launch of an animated series, an animated film, and the trading cards. To date, there are 807 creatures, more than a hundred video games, a thousand episodes of their animated series, 21 short films, more than 11,000 trading cards, and countless toys and collectibles, according to The Guardian.
1n 2016, the augmented-reality app Pokemon Go was released. It has since become the fourth highest-grossing mobile game. New video games will also be released in November and fans are thrilled.
Famous celebrities have also joined the fandom, like Ariana Grande who has a tattoo of her favorite Pokemon, Eevee. Some have also incorporated the Pokemania to their wardrobes. Editors and webmasters of Pokemon fansites believe that Pikachu will take 2019 by storm.
The Pokemon Company is using the nostalgia tactic to market to the younger generation. The original fans now have their own families, and to relive the memories of their childhood, they are passing their love for Pokemon to their kids.
Pokemon Go also has a huge in following in young fans. In fact, a 16-year old from California was a runner up in the Pokemon World Championship last year, and a 15-year old from New Jersey won first place in the 2018 world championship video game in the senior division.
The Pokemon fandom feels vindicated with the recent developments of the Pokemania. They believe that in this age, their love for Pokemon will be more understood.