Pokemon Adventures: HeartGold & SoulSilver Vol. 1 (Viz)


Rating: 3/5 – For Seasoned Pokemon Trainers (and Readers!) Only

Way back when, a manga-loving colleague of mine told me one of the best manga he’d ever read was Pokemon Adventures – the original series. I scoffed. I have nothing against Pokemon in general but there’s just no way a series so deeply mired in commercialism and selling cute toys to kids (and adults) could ever be taken seriously as an actual story. I’m kind of dumb that way.

This is not to say that Pokemon Adventures: HeartGold & SoulSilver is quite on that same level. It isn’t, nor is it a solid jumping on point for newcomers to the whole Pokemon world (yes, there are still a few people out there!). If you’re not familiar with some of the stories that precede this volume involving Gold and Silver – two pokemon trainers with very different backgrounds – you’re going to be lost pretty much from the beginning, and need to go back and find those earlier works if you’re so inclined.

For those who do know what’s going on, there’s a pretty entertaining story here: Team Rocket is at it again, collecting plates that will call forth one of the wildest and most untamed pokemon, the dragon Arceus. That the story begins with Gold facing down said dragon, it gives you an idea where this planned two-volume set will end, but since getting there is half the fun, we’re only given a few pages before we flashback to find out what brought Gold and Silver together to track down this elusive monster.

Ultimately, this book is for the die-hards out there. If you’re new to Pokemon, you’ll likely want to start elsewhere, in an earlier series.

Reviewed by: Al Sparrow – al@comicspectrum.com
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