Animated Movie Reviews, Animated Movies, Reviews

Pokemon XY The Strongest Mega Evolution Act III Review

Poster_Mega_Evolution_Special_III
All right, the third act of the Mega Evolution special has arrived! It’s been a fun little series and a good way to show off the Mega Evolutions since the main anime hasn’t done a whole lot with that so far. It’s too bad that the special is only about 20 or so minutes, but it gives us some action, which is really what counts I suppose.

Alain is still working with Steven as they try to uncover the mystery behind the large evolution stone. Alain’s boss wants to use the energy to let humanity experience a time of peace. That sounds a little suspicious eh? Well, Alain seems to think that it’s all right and he just wants to become the strongest Pokemon Trainer of all time! Meanwhile, Steven is also interested in finding out about the stone, but Groudon and Kyogre suddenly emerge and the situation escalates. Can the heroes stop these Pokemon from destroying the stone?

As this is a fairly short special, we jump to the fighting very quickly. That’s good as the first few minutes before the fight scenes weren’t incredibly awesome. They weren’t so much dull as you were just wondering where the Act was going with this. We are on a time table after all and expect a good fight since the specials don’t have the luxary of being 800+ episodes. Watching the heroes engage in small talk and walk around semi aimlessly just felt like wasted time that could have been used for more action. Luckily, the two Kaiju Pokemon arrive and then things get really intense. The special takes a lot of cues from the Godzilla films.

Groudon walks through the ocean in a similar fashion to Godzilla and uses Ghidorah’s sound effects and even seems to borrow some from Mothra, but maybe it’s just Mecha King Ghidorah. Kyogre actually used Godzilla’s roar, which was incredibly awesome to see! Then we got to the meat of the special as the two Pokemon fought each other in their Primal forms. I liked the special’s explanation of the forms as they both regained their original abilities from when they first walked the Earth. That’s pretty reasonable to me.

The battle between Groudon and Kyogre did not disappoint! Naturally I was on Groudon’s team as he has always been one of my favorite Pokemon. It was certainly a hype moment as he just grabbed Kyogre and slung him away with a back throw. That was awesome and Groudon definitely had the edge in this fight as he hit Kyogre with wave after wave of attacks. Kyogre landed many blows as well, but they just didn’t seem to have much of an impact compared to Groudon’s. Then, Rayquaza jumped into the fray and I had a feeling that the other two Pokemon were basically doomed.

In a fair fight, I like to think that Groudon could actually put up a decent fight. The problem is that Rayquaza can fly and Groudon can’t. That immediately puts Groudon at a sizable disadvantage since he will have a very tough time trying to dodge any of Rayquaza’s attacks. What helps to balance this a little is that I never found Rayquaza’s raw attack or defense power to be that impressive although this special would certainly disagree. His giant energy blast looked spectacular and made for a great end to an impressive fight. No cop outs or anything of that nature, but an actual end to the fight.

It almost goes without saying that the animation is pretty stunning here. You really feel like this is a battle between immensely powerful Pokemon and the big jump in the animation helps to distinguish it from a normal Pokemon fight. Groudon’s eruption technique from the ground along with the laser blasts especially look great. Everything is crisp and feels modern. You can tell that the company gave this special a good budget.

Unfortunately, the soundtrack is very uninspiring and there are no good themes to be found here. That’s a real shame as having a good soundtrack can make everything feel so much better as you’re watching the fights unfold. It’s safe to say that a dynamite soundtrack would have added an extra star to the rating or just made this one a stronger 8. It’s actually the dub’s fault in this case, which is too bad. The dub will need to work on improving the music as that has been a recurring problem for Pokemon for some time now.

I haven’t talked about Alain all that much, but that’s mainly because he’s a bit of a nonfactor here. He still wants to be the best, but his Charizard gets absolutely wrecked by Groudon in the fight. It’s decently realistic I suppose, but with the dragon’s speed, he should not be getting hit by any of Groudon’s attacks. Speedblitzing in this match should not be hard so he could have definitely been more impressive. At least Alain beat a random guy at the very end of the special, which will help him reclaim some dignity.

Unfortunately, you get the distinct impression that Alain is simply being used as his boss seems completely evil right from the get go. If you’ve played the games then you’re probably ready for what happens next as well. I’m hoping that Alain makes the hero call and doesn’t hesitate to unleash his powers when the stakes get high. As a character he’s all right, but while his dream gives him a lot of promise, Alain has not done anything with it yet. His bold moment when trying to save Charizard also falls flat because he gets knocked out and misses the whole climax.

Mairin is still travelling with Alain. She means well and is a nice character, but she can’t fight, which hurts her chances of really being useful in the adventure. You could essentially call her a filler character as she definitely doesn’t add to the story. I suppose that she is slowly trying to make Alain a nicer person, but that’s a very small part of the story. Steven’s probably cooler than Alain and Mairin combined although he also seems quite naive. I loved him in the Pokemon Ruby game and I’m glad that he’s still portrayed as a very tough fighter here, but he should have suspected something when Alain started to talk to himself. Letting the crystal get snagged was also unfortunate. Luckily, he is trying to correct this by personally escorting Mairin to Alain so he can get revenge and some answers. I’m rooting for Steven here!

Overall, This was a good third part to the special series. I’ll admit that I’m more interested in the fights than the actual plot as it’s been underwhelming, but with part IV supposedly being the final one, I’m expecting an epic climax full of betrayal and tension! The final fights are sure to be really epic and I hope that Alain and Steven look really good as I want at least one of them to end on a really high note. It’ll likely be a while before that one arrives in the US, but I shall be ready with a review. If the next special improves with the soundtrack, we could be looking at an elite title! I highly recommend this special if you’re a Pokemon fan or just a person who wants to see some epic action scenes! It’s short so it’s not like you will have to set aside too much time to check it out.

Overall 8/10