Pokemon Director Outs the Anime's Growing Production Issues

Pokemon Journeys is in the middle of its final act, and it has put the show's greatest trainers against one another at last. Ash and several top-tier trainers have spent the past few weeks battling one another to fight Leon in the Pokemon World Championship. However, a distinct decline in quality has led some fans to question Pokemon's current direction, and a staff member is finally addressing the situation publicly.

The whole thing came to light on Twitter when a fan asked Kurakazu Chiaki to be candid about the problems impacting production on Pokemon Journeys. In a short answer, the animation director told the fan, "We don't have enough people." So if you were suspicious about Pokemon's production status, well – now you know.

Pokemon Journeys is an annual title, so you can imagine how much work is needed week after week to bring episodes to life. OLM has helped oversee the show since Ash Ketchum was introduced in the '90s, so no studio knows the series better. But when it comes to the workforce, it seems OLM doesn't have the resources needed to hurdle production problems.

Of course, fans have been quick to look at OLM and suss out theories behind its production issues. As of March 2022, a report from the studio confirmed it has 204 employees compared to a report from 2018 denoting 216 full-time staffers. The company's latest report does not list the number of contractors working for OLM, but in 2018, the company had 117. If that total has dipped alongside the number of full-time employees, you can see why things at OLM may be strained.

READ MORE: Pokemon Readies for Ash's Grand Finals Battle With New Trailer

For now, there is no official explanation for Pokemon's production issues, but it is clear that something is going on behind the scenes. And as the franchise's new anniversary looms overhead, there is no telling whether the problems will be addressed before Pokemon Scarlet and Violet spark their own anime.

What do you make of this latest report on Pokemon? Do you think the show should become a seasonal one? Share your thoughts with us in the comments section below or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB.