Dogasu's Backpack

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Welcome to Dogasu's Backpack, a fansite for the Japanese franchise Pocket Monsters! For 20 years this website has been your guide for the Japanese version of Pokémon and contains content you can't find anywhere else. Stuff like detailed comparisons between the Japanese version and the English version of the animated series, interview translations, information on Japan-only manga, a lyrics database, a home video guide, and much more! So whether you're a seasoned veteran or a newbie just getting into Pocket Monsters, this site has something for every fan to enjoy.

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Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Supporters' Podcast
September 22nd, 2020

Dogasu @ 00:32 JST -- A few weeks from now - October 9th, to be exact - the very first episode of a new official Pocket Monsters podcast will begin.

Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Podcast

The podcast is called *deep breath* The Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Supporters' Podcast - "The Movie Secrets We Want to Tell You" (劇場版ポケットモンスター ココ -サポーターズPodcastーいま、君に伝えたい映画のヒミツ). Each week (presumably) a group of special guests will come together to provide behind-the-scenes secrets on the new movie. The first two episodes' guests will be the film's director, Mr. Tetsuo Yajima, and the actor providing the voice of the Pokémon researcher Karen, Ms. Shoko Nakagawa.

I've taken everything we know about the podcast so far and put it all on its own page here. I plan to cover the podcast, which will be all in Japanese, probably about the same way I covered Pokémon Radio Show! The Rocket-Dan's Secret Empire back in 2012.

In other movie news, the first batch of winners for the annual illustration contest has been announced and so I've added details on the winning entries to my page for the contest.

The winning entries will all be shown during Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco," most likely during the film's end credits.

Finally, I've updated the movie's box office section by filling in information on the movies Coco will be going up against on opening day.

Josee, the Tiger and the Fish
Wonder Woman 1984

The competition's actually not so tough this time around! It'll be super interesting to see how well this year's movie performs in contrast to all the others since it's not going up against a bunch of summer blockbusters like all the others have. Do you think Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" can take the Number One spot in its opening weekend?

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Pocket Monsters will be moving to Friday nights starting next month
September 13th, 2020

Dogasu @ 22:52 JST -- This is something that had been rumored for a few days now but an commercial that played after tonight's episode of Pocket Monsters (2019) confirmed that the show will be moving from its current Sunday evening time slot to a Friday evening time slot.

Timeslot Change

Starting Friday, October 9th, 2020 Pocket Monsters (2019) will be airing every Friday evening from 18:55 JST. The show will be taking over the time slot of a cooking show called Dekamori Hunter.

This marks the fourth time in the series' 23-year history that the show's changed time slots:
  • The first 38 episodes of Pocket Monsters (1997) aired Tuesday nights at 6:30pm JST but lost its time slot after the whole Pokémon Shock incident.
  • When the show came back from hiatus in April 1998 its old Tuesday time slot had already been swooped up by another show and so Pocket Monsters moved to airing on Thursday nights at 7:00pm JST instead. The rest of Pocket Monsters (1997), all of Pocket Monsters Advanced Generation, all of Pocket Monsters Diamond & Pearl, all of Pocket Monsters Best Wishes!, and most of Pocket Monsters XY aired in this time slot.
  • From April 7th, 2016 - a full 18 years later - the show shifted to airing five minutes earlier, starting at 6:55pm JST instead of 7:00pm JST. The rest of Pocket Monsters XY, Pocket Monsters XY&Z, and everything up to the end of the Necrozoma arc in Pocket Monsters Sun & Moon aired in this time slot.
  • From October 7th, 2018 the show moved to its current Sunday evening time slot. At the time the head of TV-Tokyo's animation division, Mr. Hirokazu Oshida (押田裕一), issued this statement:
"Starting from Autumn 2018 TV-Tokyo will create a new animation programming block aimed at families, particularly children, on Sunday evenings from 5:30pm to 6:30pm. As people's lives and viewing habits change we want to really shift gears toward the concept of "spending your days off relaxing with your family." Starting with those two programs and continuing on with shows like "Moya-Moya Summers 2," "Emergency SOS! The Great Plan to Drain All the Water from the Pond," and "Ikegami's Sunday Primetime World," we hope the whole family will come together to enjoy TV-Tokyo's programming. We're going to continue giving it our all to make sure everyone continues to love these shows for a long time. Please look forward to both these programs."

At the time, Japanese TV as a whole was moving toward getting rid of the whole "anime airing in primetime during the week" idea and was moving everything on Saturdays and Sundays instead. Pocket Monsters Sun & Moon and Boruto: Naruto Next Generations moved to Sundays in 2018 and
Doraemon and Crayon Shin-chan moved to Saturdays in 2019. In September 2020 there isn't a single anime that currently airs in primetime (7:00pm - 10:00pm)  on weeknights on Japanese terrestrial TV.

Animedia - December 2019

In the December 2019 issue of the magazine Animedia the producer of the current series, Mr. Tomoya Negishi (根岸智也), talked about how the show's Sunday evening time slot had shaped the way they decided to tackle Pocket Monsters (2019):

-- (Pocket Monsters 2019) is being made in such a way that it has stories that get wrapped up in a single episode. Can you tell us the reason for that?

Negishi:  The biggest reason is the change in the way it's being broadcast. Its current time slot is Sundays at 6:00 pm, but since it's Sunday then viewers might be out with their parents or hanging out with their friends or whatever and so they may not necessarily be home to catch the show every week. Because of that, we thought it might be difficult for people to watch these long ongoing stories without missing an episode. We're not making the episodes completely stand-alone, however, but we are trying not to do too many two-parters, and in those cases that we do we have this rule to try to make them in such a way that you can enjoy each part on its own.

(In addition to airing on Sunday evenings the current series is posted on the Pokémon Japan official YouTube channel every week as well as on video streaming services like Hulu and Amazon Prime so it's not like watching the TV series "live" every week is fans' only options here...)

This upcoming move from Sundays to Fridays is giving some fans hope that Pocket Monsters (2019) aversion to having multi-part episodes may be changed, though of course it's still too early to know that for certain.

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Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Pre-Order Bonuses
September 9th, 2020

Dogasu @ 15:32 JST -- Today's update is all about the bonuses you can receive when you pre-order a movie ticket for Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco".

First up: certain stores are offering exclusive bonuses for ordering the tickets from them instead of their competitors and so I've added information about each vendor-specific bonus to the Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Distributions page.

Next up is an update regarding the dates by which you'll be able to redeem the serial codes for "Celebi of the Okoya Forest" and "Zarude of the Okoya Forest" that come with your pre-order tickets. Up until recently the official website's "you only have until this date to download your Mythical Pokémon" notice was just set to "TBD" but it now says we have up until March 31st, 2021 to get them.

Redemption Dates

The actual tickets themselves contradict this and have a download-by date of September 30th, 2020 printed on the back of them but I'm assuming that information's just out-of-date. I'd go with what's written on the movie website instead.

This year, for the first time ever, Pocket Monsters pre-order movie tickets can be purchased by fans overseas via the Japanese Amazon site. With the serial codes being valid until March 2021 fans should still have plenty of time to download the Mythical Pokémon to their Sword & Shield games.

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Episode Comparison "A Scare in the Air"
September 5th, 2020

Dogasu @ 22:54 JST -- It's been a while since I've done one of these, huh? Today I've put together a write-up for the second episode in the Orange Islands arc, "A Scare in the Air."

"A Scare in the Air"

This comparison is a long one. I really tried to cut it down since I realize that, in the year 2020, very few people read long-form essays like this all the way through, but the sheer number of dialogue edits and supplementary information necessitated a longer than usual comparison. The rant I go into about the use of Japanese text in the show probably doesn't help much either!

I'm also trying out a few new things with this comparison; mainly, adding the original Japanese text for every single line of dialogue brought up and adding screencaps to go along with each and every dialogue edit. What do you think? Do you think they make the comparison easier to follow? And would you like to see me do this for future comparisons?

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"Twilight Wings" Episode 07,
PokéToon Zuruggu and Mimikkyu "Chase the Beans"
August 17th, 2020

Dogasu @ 11:34 JST -- I've got two animated shorts-related updates for you today.

The first deals with the final episode of Twilight Wings that was released earlier this month.

Twilight Wings Episode 07 "Sky"
The series' official site has also been posting interviews with the staff that gives some neat behind-the-scenes details so I'm thinking about translating those at some point. Is that something you'd like to see? I'm holding off on doing anything with them for the time being on the off-chance that TPCI actually just does it themselves but at the same time I get the feeling they're just not going to bother.

The other update has to do with me (finally!) getting around to making a page for
PokéToon Zuruggu and Mimikkyu "Chase the Beans," the Japan-only Looney Tunes-style short that came out back in June.

PokéToon Zuruggu and Mimikkyu "Chase the Beans,"

There isn't a whole lot to document about the four minute short but I do at least have the full staff list up for those of you interested.

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Pocket Monsters Planetarium "The Message from the Aurora"
August 12th, 2020

Dogasu @ 11:23 JST -- Today's update is all about the new Pocket Monsters planetarium show coming out later this year.

Pocket Monsters Planetarium "The Message from the Aurora"

The show, Pocket Monsters Planetarium "The Message from the Aurora," is the seventh of these planetarium shows to be released here in Japan. 
These shows are original animated Pocket Monsters episodes created specifically for Konica Minolta planetariums where a hybrid of 2D and 3D animation is projected onto their dome-like ceilings to surround the audiences with images and sound. It's like a regular episode of the TV series, just projected on the inside of a giant dome. The shows tend to tour the country's planetariums for a few years, coming and going from various planetariums and science museums throughout Japan.

The story of this particular 27 minute special is about Satoshi and Gou researching how auroras and the legendary Pokémon Suicune are all connected.

I was fortunate enough to be able to see the two most recent productions - Pocket Monsters Sun & Moon Planetarium and Pocket Monsters XY The Space Debris - so my plan is to go see this one as well and then provide a write-up.

In the meantime, I've created a page detailing everything we know about the special here.

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Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" Music
August 9th, 2020

Dogasu @ 13:05 JST -- Let's talk about the music we'll be hearing in Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco."

"Strange and Wonderful Creatures"

During Wednesday's info dump we learned that the movie's main theme song will be Strange and Wonderful Creatures (ふしぎなふしぎな生きもの). This is going to be one of several vocal songs to be used in the film, apparently. The Japanese title, Fushigi na Fushigi na Ikimono, is a phrase used a lot in this franchise; it's heard in many of the films' "World of Pokémon" segments, songs like Pokémon Ieru ka Na?, and even as the episode title (kind of) of that one clip show episode of Diamond & Pearl.

Diamond & Pearl

The song is written and composed by Okazaki Physical Education. You'll know him as the singer / lyricist of various songs from the Sun & Moon TV series such as Pose; Jaari Boy, Jaari Girl; and Kimi no Bouken. Tortoise Matsumoto is from the Japanese rock band Ulfuls, and while they've had dozens of hit songs over the decades Western fans will probably recognize them as being the singers of the second opening theme to the series Bobobo-bo Bo-bobo.

There will also apparently be other vocal songs used in this movie but those won't be announced until later.

All the information we have about the new song has been collected here.

Pocket Monsters The Movie "Coco" is the 23rd Pokémon film. It is about a young boy, Coco, who was raised in a jungle by the Mythical Pokémon Zarude. The film, which was originally schedule to come out July 10th, has a new release date of Friday, December 25th, 2020.

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Dogasu's Backpack is a fan-created website.  Pocket Monsters (Pokémon) is © 1995-2018 Nintendo / Creatures Inc. / GAME FREAK, Inc. / Pokémon.  No infringement of copyrights is meant by the creation of the web site.

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