To put it simple, I thought everything was good in Johto and all the regional sagas.
I'm really surprised some of you don't remember how Charizard's departure started the negative view of the Johto saga back in 2001. Back then Charizard was insanely popular. Everyone loved the fact that Charizard finally started obeying Ash.
When Charizard was let go, at the time we didn't know if Ash would ever use it again, the episode originally made it seem like Charizard was being released like Butterfree and Pidgeot. So people were angry because it seemed like Ash was getting rid of his powerful pokemon for no reason. That's what originally started the negative view towards Johto, even before the tedious fillers came along.
The writers getting rid of Ash's Kanto starters back then was a mistake.
I don't think that the writers getting rid of Ash's Kanto starters was a mistake. Aside from Charizard, they didn't really do much during the badge collecting portion of the journey. Squirtle didn't do anything beyond fighting Team Rocket prior to its departure episode and while Bulbasaur got some decent focus in a few filler episodes, it was still primarily taking up space on Ash's team that could have been used to introduce Phanpy a lot earlier so that it could have maybe been in a Gym battle. They helped Ash out in the Johto League, but they could have done that without taking up room in Ash's team. They really couldn't have kept the Kanto starters the entire saga anyway. That would have made it difficult for them to promote the Johto starters and keeping the Kanto starters around was a significant reason, if not the main one, why they were underdeveloped. If Ash had left his Kanto starters at Prof. Oak's place before leaving to Johto, he could have captured more Johto Pokemon a lot sooner and that could have helped to give them more screentime and development. I still think that getting rid of the Kanto starters was a good idea. They would have had to do it at some time anyway. They certainly couldn't have been on Ash's main team forever.
First of all Butterfree, Pigeot and Charizard are different circumstances. Butterfree left for a good reason of it's own life. Pigeot barely did much but got it's ass kicked a lot and was the most shafted of his Kanto group back in the day. And we all know how bird pokemon are treated. And like I said, the writers probably thought that keeping Charizard with Ash was cool but they knew he would be spamming it in mostly every gym and battle, so they had to get rid of it. But like I said before, they could have just had him leave him at the ranch, that way haters wouldn't have had to yap this whole time about it.When Charizard was let go, at the time we didn't know if Ash would ever use it again, the episode originally made it seem like Charizard was being released like Butterfree and Pidgeot. So people were angry because it seemed like Ash was getting rid of his powerful pokemon for no reason. That's what originally started the negative view towards Johto, even before the tedious fillers came along.
Unless, of course, you're only referring to... *how* they were released...?
Personally i didn't mind Misty and Brock stay for Johto. They still brought lot of humor, tension and enjoyable dynamic into cast providing adventurous feeling in pokemon series, giving it certain identity/charm in my opinion. Which allowed to get insight into Misty and Brock past, character development dealing with their issues or goals, have them contribute to resolution of various plots, catch new pokemon etc. Which i appreciated being valuable component of series allowing to be done more with characters and receive some valuable growth. More notably during Master Quest when Whirl Islands started,.
In longer run it was still better than what they got in Kanto barely getting any growth, chance to form their teams and reveal more about background and motives which mold their characters.
I prefer when characters in this show achieve something, grow as persons and trainers on journey making it feel like they gained something from it, explore on various facets of their personalities, past and from where they come while building on plots which surround them and their pokemon.
And while there could have been done more leaving things to be desired, their stay for Johto allowed to be more fleshed out ,being way too early to have them leave after Kanto only ending with another "Tracey syndrome"(underdeveloped and unexplored character).
Which is one of main reasons why he was low received not staying for long enough for people to invest in character, learn more and grew to like him.
Really the Johto saga was the growing pains of a transition saga. The Johto starters were poorly received at the time for replacing Ash's Kanto starters, similar to Tracey being poorly received for replacing Brock. This is why just like Brock returned over Tracey, all of Ash's Kanto starters return at the end of Johto and star in the league. It was as if the writers were literally casting the Johto pokes aside to give Bulbasaur/Squirtle/Charizard and Snorlax all starring roles in the 8th Gym and league. They didn't get the character replacement aspect right until May was introduced as she proved more than just being Misty 2.0, hence why unlike Brock/Tracey and the Kanto/Johto starter fiasco, this time around the original character did not come back.
I don't know if that was the attitude of the online community at the time or if you're using your opinion to speak for everyone again, but I liked the Johto starters. They were underdeveloped, but they had more personality than the Kanto starters and I would have preferred for them to start Johto with Ash leaving his older Pokemon, aside from Pikachu, at Professor Oak so that he could capture the Johto Pokemon sooner and they could get more development. Though, the writers did have a hard time with how to develop Ash's new team. I think that's why his Kanto Pokemon got more focus, aside from how popular Charizard at least was. They didn't know how Ash's Johto team could face off against Dragon Pokemon or some Pokemon from the Johto League, so they just relied on his older Pokemon instead of developing his current team. I don't think it was necessary to bring back Squirtle and Bulbasaur for the Johto League, especially when I never thought that they were that strong to begin with. This was the first time that Ash got a new team, so they didn't quite know how to handle their development, similar to how they didn't know how to stretch a single journey into a full generation, and they learned from their mistakes with the next series. They gave Ash a fresh start with only taking Pikachu to Hoenn, which lead to most of his Hoenn Pokemon getting pretty good screentime/development. If they had done that at the start of Johto, I think that the chances are good that the Johto starters would have better development.Originally Posted by The Fighting Misty
My point is - even if there were fans who quit watching the anime after Charizard or Squirtle left, what does that matter now? Would keeping them in Ash's roster the whole time really have made the Johto saga better and more enjoyable for you? Or would you instead be talking about how much they stagnated throughout their extra long run and why they should have been Oak'd earlier?
Your posts seem to suggest so, yet I think we can all agree nowadays that letting them go was probably for the better - and not just for promotional reasons, either. Bulbasaur shouldn't have even hung around as long as he did, considering he became redundant since Ash got Chikorita and did basically nothing throughout the journey until the league, anyway.
Last edited by Trainer Gabriel; 5th May 2013 at 02:50 PM.
When the show was in the original series people remembered Ash with his classic Kanto team, the Johto team is never brought up.
I think it goes both ways. On one hand some things were better. Misty wasn't as bitchy and the Gym Leaders were (for the most part) better Trainers than the ones in Kanto. Ash was also a bit more mature. But there were too many pointless episodes. At least they did get a good picture of Johto.
Majority definitely didn't watched this show mainly because of Ash Kanto starters and while some of their leaving came of in contrived, rushed manner(like Charizard) it was hardly something which caused viewers discountenance over series as whole.
Not nearly as much like Misty leaving and disband of original trio caused from what i noticed, which were viewed as indivisible cast meant to stay forever resulting in backlash back than.
Fact how no amount of petitions and complaining received response should serve as conclusive evidence how writers don't appease to complaints from viewers you can find on English pokemon sites nor they pay attention to them.
Hence why i highly doubt return of Snorlax, Charizard or Squirtle during end of Johto was writers way of "apologizing"to older fans for replacing them with Johto starters like Cyndaquil, Bayleef or Totodile.
In reality it wasn't that much different from what it happened in Battle Frontier, Sinnoh League or Best Wishes with writers returning Ash Kanto pokemon all the time mainly for fanservice purposes and to strengthen series continuity.
Speaking of Ash Johto starters while im disappointed with Totodile treatment barely having any growth or note worthy achievements, looking back i was satisfied with Chikorita presence. She had fun personality being stubborn and often jealous over Ash giving attention to other pokemon becoming infatuated, experiencing growth herself when she learned after evolution to be less urgent and how she became too heavy to jump in Ash lap like she used to did before.
She had quite impressive battle record as well beating Bugsy Spinarak, helped slow down Whitney Miltank, defeated Misty Staryu which was at higher level of experience, won whole match against gym leader Chuck by herself defeating Poliwrath and Machoke, defeated Harrison Houndoom etc.
All in all i had not much objections toward Bayleef, and Cyndaquil had some impressive battles and achievements too showing insecurity and submissive nature on which Ash worked becoming stronger and more "brave "so to speak.
Only pity was that he never evolved and lived up to its full potential unfortunately.