By: Nicolas Wright
Nintendo began its journey in 1996 after the release of Pokemon Red and Blue. 25 years later, many people of all ages have enjoyed and still enjoy the franchise. On their 20th Anniversary, Nintendo re-released their first games on their most recent hand-held consoles, along with game events in other games such as Splatoon. They also released new pokemon cards with new merchandise like plushies and toys.
Pokemon had bigger plans for their 25th Anniversary compared to their 20th. On the morning of February 25th, Pokemon released a trailer for a virtual concert featuring music artist Post Malone, who claimed that he was the biggest pokemon fan growing up. Stating in a news release “I’ve been a pokemon fan for the longest time, so the opportunity to headline the Pokemon Day concert celebrating 25 years is awesome.” He even still carries a Gameboy Color with hime to play the game. In the concert, he was given his own animated character. It was based on the games but many fans say that the character is “weird” and “scary” yet seemingly still enjoyed the concert.
Although not part of the concert, Katy Perry was also chosen to help with the celebration. Like Post Malone, she is also a self-professed lifelong fan of pokemon. In January of this year, she said this about her collaboration with the Anniversary, “It is an honor to be chosen to help celebrate a franchise that has given me so much joy in the last 25 years, and to be able to watch it evolve in the ways it’s provide that kind of electric joy for the kids in my life and around the world.” In a press release, she talks about her song, saying “The song’s themes- resilience, igniting your inner light- have guided my life and also parallels Pokemon’s story and characters.”
Jose Alvaro Osoria Balvin or J Balcin is a famous Colombian Singer and rapper who gained popularity in 2014, was also asked to help with the 25th Celebration. Like the other artists mentioned here, Balvin also has been a fan of the franchise. When asked about the reason for his collaboration, he stated “I always wanted to be Ash Ketchum and through this collaboration with pokemon I’ve been able to live out a childhood dream.That love for pokemon inspired ‘Ten Cuidado,’ my contribution to P25 Music, as well as the video in which I get to be a Pokemon Trainer in New York City.”
Each of these artists was given a pokemon card that has been designed after them, each with their own pokemon. Post Malone’s Card features a Dragonite and Butterfree, Katy Perry’s card features Pikachu, the main mascot of the franchise, and J Balvin was featured with a Charizard. All these pokemon are popularly liked by the fans, giving an even better reason for them to be added onto the cards.
Although other Music Artists didn’t receive specially-designed pokemon cards, the other artists who contributed to the ‘Pokemon 25 Album’ are:
Mabel – Take It Home, Jax Jones – Phases (with Sinead Harnett), Lil Yachty – Believing, Cyn – Wonderful, Vince Staples – Got ‘Em, Louane – Game Girl, Tierra Whack – Art Show, Yaffle – Reconnect (feat Daichi Yamamoto & AAAMYYY) and remixes of Got ‘Em, Wonderful and Take It Home by ZHU.
Throughout 2021 and Now:
Among the release of the Pokémon 25 Album, Nintendo and ‘The Pokémon Company’ which was founded in 1998, later made a new TV show based off the old and new video games called “Pokémon Evolutions.” They also have cooperated with Bear Walker Skateboards who released four especially designed skateboards featuring Pokémon.