- Member: VegettoEX
- Title: I'm Above The Age Of 10 And I Like Pokemon
- Premiered: 2008-08-08
- Rancid fall back down
- Otakon, Otakon AMV Contest (2008-08-08)
This was a video idea that had been floating around in my head for a few years, but just never got made. The recent domestic releases of the TV season boxsets were really the catalyst for its creation. At first, though, it didn't seem like it would be made until 2009, since the delay between sets was six months to a year. After the second set, however, they sped up to mere weeks / a couple months in between. In fact, the "Orange Islands" set came out very shortly before the actual deadline, but ended up giving just enough extra footage to really help finish out the video.
I have a really big thing for the concept of "friendship" in my anime. It doesn't matter what the genre is... as long as there's a solid bond between friends, I'm totally there. This is clearly most shown in my love of long-running shonen, but it's crossed over to other interests, as well. One of my favorite examples was actually from Otakon 2007's video made with Meri and Jeff, "Never Fall Apart".
That being said, this video is all about friendship (of course). It's a different type of friendship though... one between a boy and his Pokemon. At the end of the day, it's not all that different, really...
The line "we're gonna make it through the darkest night..." is what really inspired me to create the video. Listening to the song one day I was reminded of Ash/Satoshi up in the snow and being kept warm by all of his Pokemon. I think that when you watch the video, this intent and idea really shines through with this particular scene.
Originally the video wasn't supposed to be so literal with the "fall back down" lyrics. After the first couple examples fell into place and the footage kept existing to flesh it out, it just ended up working out that way. I also really like switching things up in a video while paying attention to the lyrics. This is why at the end of the video Ash/Satoshi is the one catching and helping back up all of his Pokemon, showing his thanks and appreciation for all they've done for him.
There was also originally much more dancing in the video, especially towards the end. After the timeline was completed and I was able to watch it all in context, I decided that there wasn't enough of a logical progression to the last two shots with scenes of dancing-only; shots of the group laughing and running together seemed to be a natural segue between the dancing and those last two shots. When I was done revising it and saw those shots of Ash/Satoshi and Pikachu running along with each other transitioning into the hugs at the end, I knew that it was exactly the feeling I was shooting for all along.
One extremely difficult part to fill was what is not the Lapras section before the first dance breakdown. Unlike the vast majority of other lyrics in the song, nothing I plopped down really seemed to make sense. For a long while I was using the episode where Charmander is first shown (abandoned by his previous trainer), but the footage just wasn't making enough sense even to me, nevermind people who didn't know the context. After a little bit of back-and-forth with Dogasu, we decided that Ash/Satoshi rescuing Lapras on the beach (with help from Pikachu) worked much better. I still feel that this is one of the weakest parts of the video, but it is thankfully much better than before.
A couple other segments of the video went through at least two revisions. The majority of the lyrical opening was re-done and re-done until the very end; I'm ultimately most happy with what ended up in the final version, as I feel it sets the best tone of all the revisions. A couple of the very beginning opening shots of Pokemon were also replaced as the video went on. I really like how they all come in with the bass guitar.
A little bit of cheating I did was replacing some of the shots of badges. Maybe one or two are actually from the Orange Island episodes, despite showing the gym trainers from before. This was because the shots of badges from those episodes either weren't close-up enough, or just didn't show anything at all. One other minor inconsistency (especially for Pokemon fans) is the drumroll of Pokemon shots right before the chorus breakdown. It is clear to see that it began with shots of solely Ash's/Satoshi's own Pokemon, but since there were not enough to fill out the whole drumroll, I dipped into other episodes for similarly-formatted shots to flesh the whole thing out.
After Otakon, I had a couple discussions with friends over what type/genre of video this actually is. Going into it, I always intended it to be more of an upbeat video than a sentimental video (though clearly having hints of the latter). Especially in the earlier versions of the video with more dancing, I certainly felt this. As it continued onwards, I could see it becoming more sentimental in tone, though still keeping its upbeat feel. In the end, I think it's a good mix of both. I didn't get a chance to see its Friday screening at Otakon, but the Saturday screening confirmed the audience was certainly getting a sentimental feeling from it (lots of collective "Aaawwwwww!!!!"). As with all videos, it felt much slower to me when I watched it at the convention; a lot of this has to do with the surreal nature of watching it with such a large crowd. I don't think anyone did or would have an issue with the category it was ultimately submitted to and placed in (Upbeat), nor would it really have affected any type of voting outcome (at least I don't think so). I was able to have the video played in front of thousands of people in a large setting, and that still means the world to me.
It was an absolute pleasure to work with this footage, and I actually had a really fun time working on every second of the video. It's a feeling that hasn't really been matched in such a long time, probably due to such a minimal amount of technical effort being required (beyond a couple lip-flap coverings, there's little other than cuts and dissolves). I actually was able to give myself that chill and smile with my own video that I seek out in other videos, and if that's all that the video accomplishes, that's all I need.