The Pokemon anime series has been going on for decades, following Ash Ketchum on his quest to become one of the greatest trainers in the world with a series of changing supporting characters, but the original idea to continue the story of pocket monsters for ten years plus was too much to handle for the first writer of the series, Takeshi Shudo. Shudo, who wrote the first time feature length films and the first five years of stories for the anime as a whole. With Shudo being so close to the series, it's no wonder that he felt overwhelmed at this long plan!
An older blog was discovered from the writer of Pokemon that showed that his original idea was to end the journey of Ash Ketchum and Team Rocket, attempting instead to focus on new trainers and characters that could act as windows to the anime world. It was clear from his description in the write-up that Shudo cared deeply for the world of Ash Ketchum and what he had created with Pokemon, so it's understandable that when he was told that the story of this trainer would continue for ten more years, the stress was simply too overwhelming for him.
The producers of the show let Takeshi Shudo know that they didn't want to diverge from the character of Ash and wanted to essentially continue his story indefinitely, making for quite the head ache. Overwhelmed by this decision, Shudo was hospitalized, ironically enough, alongside those who had seen a recent episode of the series that caused a number of seizures thanks in part to a pocket monster's ability creating flashing lights.
Shudo eventually left the franchise after five years of writing the television series, and the feature length films under his belt, but it was clear that his work was instrumental in creating an anime franchise that remains relevant to this day. Though there have been spin-off stories such as Pokemon: Twilight Wings that have focused on characters outside of Ash and his stable of friends, we aren't expecting the main story of Pokemon to switch protagonists any time soon!
Do you want to see Ash Ketchum take a break from being the protagonist of Pokemon? Who do you think should take his place? Feel free to let us know in the comments or hit me up directly on Twitter @EVComedy to talk all things comics, anime, and the world of Pokemon!
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