Pokemon Vol. #01: Choose You! Pikachu! - Mania.com

Anime/Manga Reviews

Mania Grade: B

0 Comments | Add


Rate & Share:


Related Links:



  • Audio Rating: B
  • Video Rating: B
  • Packaging Rating: C+
  • Menus Rating: C-
  • Extras Rating: C+
  • Age Rating: 3 & Up
  • Region: 1 - North America
  • Released By: Viz Media
  • MSRP: 24.98
  • Running time: 75
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
  • Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
  • Disc Encoding: MPEG-2
  • Series: Pokemon

Pokemon Vol. #01: Choose You! Pikachu!

By Andrew Tei     October 14, 2003
Release Date: December 15, 1998

Pokemon Vol. #01: Choose You! Pikachu!
© Viz Media

What They Say
Ash Ketchum wantsito become theibest Pokemon traineriin theiwhole world byicapturing all 150 of theiknown Pokemon. However, Ash must learnito get along with his first Pokemon, theicut, quirky, andihigh-voltage Pikachu!

Afteria bumpy start, Ash andiPikachu work together asia team--justiin timeito foil Team Rocket's Pokemon-stealing schemes. And once Misty joins up with our heroes--the excitement never ends! You gotta catch all theiactionias Ash andicompany take us onian incredible Pokemon adventure!

The Review!
First it was a video game, and now here comes the anime. Pokémon comes blasting to the home screen with the adventure of Ash Ketchum, a boy determined to be the best Pokémon trainer in the world.


This is an English language only release DVD. A stereo soundtrack is included, but no directionality is used at all. Dialogue and sound effects are clear. One great thing about listening to early Pokémon dubs is how the voice actors haven?t completely gotten into their roles yet. Ash?s and James? voices are much deeper than where they end up at, and Meowth sounds completely different.


The video seemed a bit soft to me throughout the DVD. The episodes here also suffer from some bad telecining as the picture does a lot of little jumps. At times, the picture seems to go dark also. There were no noticeable compression related artifacts though. No line shimmering or cross coloration was present.


Misty, Ash and Pikachu get the front cover here with Pikachu in front. The design is pretty uninspired with a horrible background. The spine and the front cover include the name for this volume. On the back, we?ve got a description that sets up the Pokémon series with Jesse and James of Team Rocket posing with their Pokéballs. Episode titles for the included episodes are listed, and five Pokémon from the episode are pictured. There is a chapter insert inside, but it?s just a picture of the menu.


There is only one menu here, and it?s static and audioless. Basically the menu is a chapter selection scene. I guess that?s all kiddie DVDs deserved when this was released.


The full length version of the Pokérap is included on the DVD, and a 24 page comic is included inside the case. The Pokérap is just a song that uses all the names of the original 150 Pokémon.

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)

Our adventure begins with Pokémon, I Choose You. On this day, young wannabe Pokémon trainers begin their Pokémon journeys through the world. Ash Ketchum, a young ten year old from Pallet Town, is set to begin his journey today. In order to begin your journey, a young trainer is given their first Pokémon. Professor Oak has three Pokémon available for new trainers, but Ash oversleeps and misses out on all three. Luckily for Ash, Professor Oak has one Pokémon left, a Pikachu. Piakchu is an electric type Pokémon, and doesn?t have any respect for Ash at all and immediately gives him an electric shock.

Ash and Pikachu begin their journey with Ash tugging Pikachu along. Pikachu also refuses to get in a Pokéball, which is how most trainers carry their Pokémon around. The little yellow runt refuses to listen to Ash at all, and goes up in a tree leaving Ash to try to catch other Pokémon by himself. When Ash accidently angers a Spearow bird type Pokémon, it calls its flock and they attack both Pikachu and Ash. Pikachu gets really hurt, but Ash tries to protect it and run away. Finally, Ash and Pikachu can?t go on, and Ash makes a stand against the flock of Spearrow. Pikachu is moved by Ash?s determination and defeats the Spearow with a Thundershock attack.

Our story continues on in Pokémon Emergency, with Pikachu badly hurt from the first episode. Ash reaches Veridian City. A bunch of thieves have been stealing Pokémon in the town, so when Ash enter, he is immediatly stopped by Officer Jenny. After explaining the situation, Officer Jenny rushes the two of them off to the Pokémon center where Nurse Joy is stationed. Thankfully, Ash gets Pikachu there in time. Also, a girl named Misty catches up with Ash. Ash took her bike in the previous episode to try to get away, and ended up destroying it. Misty wants Ash to fix her bike, but the Pokémon thieves, a group that calls themselves Team Rocket attacks the Pokémon center to try to steal the Pokémon there. Ash, Misty, and Pikachu stop Team Rocket and head off together to the next city on Ash?s journey. Misty decides to stick around until Ash can replace her bike.

We end up with Ash Catches a Pokémon, where Ash catches a Caterpie. Misty is absolutely terrified of bugs though, and Caterpie is a bug type Pokémon. Caterpie likes Misty, and is saddened Misty is terrified of her. Ash also encounters a Pidgeot, and he captures it using Pikachu. Team Rocket makes another appearance, and they are now determined to capture Pikachu since its electrical power is much higher than other Pikachu. Ash only has a few Pokémon with which to defend himself though, so it?s up to Pidgeot and the little Caterpie.

Wow, this is where the anime that has spawned over five seasons so far started. At this point, the anime is still trying to stay pretty close to how the game works. The anime accompanies the game by following a beginning trainer. Ash learns how to become a Pokémon trainer, just like kids playing the game would. The show has evolved considerably since the beginning, so I can see a lot of people not enjoying these early episodes. For me, it was nice seeing some episodes that I haven?t seen in over four years. This is only for serious Pokémon collectors though.

English Language

Review Equipment
Toshiba 3109 player, Toshiba 36? Cinema Series via component, Pioneer VSX-810S receiver via optical, Cerwin Vega front speakers, Pinnacle center and rears


Be the first to add a comment to this article!


You must be logged in to leave a comment. Please click here to login.