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Controversial opinions

Outside of the plotline for villain climaxes (Darkest Day and Mother Beast), here's a couple examples.

-Most of Diantha and Lance battle featured the two of them never moving from one spot while rarely dodging or using creative counters. There was strategy, but it felt more like the turn based combat of the games.
-Contests were simply the appeals round with no battle round, like the games. People say its a different type, but still, this was done closer to the games than traditional AG/DP contests.
I still hate how poorly they treated the Darkest Day plot. They would have done so much more with it but instead they threw it in the first year, rushed right though it and quickly forgot about it after the fact like it never happened. That to me showed how little of a shit JN has for Galar.
The Darkest Day arc itself I liked, but Rose should have been established an episode or two earlier. It's not like there's much else to do with it since the plot is bare bones in the games.
Team Flare didn't really have much to work with and they still made it great in XY so thats no excuse.
They basically covered all the same key points, the wolves in the forest (and Sonia explaining the lore to Go), picking up the rusty sword and shield, and the Eternatus battle with Leon/Ash/Go all battling it with their legends and it being captured and stored away.

The only thing they should of done is introduced Rose early in a random earlier episode, just as a lead-in into the arc. 4 episodes is enough for an arc like this.
The only thing they should of done is introduced Rose early in a random earlier episode, just as a lead-in into the arc. 4 episodes is enough for an arc like this.
I sorry but no that seems like the lazy way to me. Even more so after they shown they can do better before.
With Rose being one of the most important people in Galar right next to Leon and the history that the two share, he easily could've been introduced at the start. Who's hosting the PWC? A very easy answer would be Rose. Considering Journeys loves cameos/callbacks he could've been working together with Mr. Goodshow, the president of the Pokemon League.
A Mr. Goodshow comeback is more then nice. My only thing that makes me a little sick that we do know nothing about some Legends. When there is... For example Don George: An as talentet shown Trainer. And here it comes: He hasn't fought an only fight that was shown. Not even in a flashback.
I don't fancy episodes that solely focus on battles with no further texture to it. I always get distracted in the middle while the Pokémon keep attacking each other. Often, I don't genuinely remember what happened the entire time as I would have lost my focus other than the outcome. That's why although I am always excited for the League arcs, they are not recallable for the details for me.

The exception could be Roxie's two-parter battle, but only because I love Roxie as a character, and her only appearance was her battle with Ash. My favorite episodes are often the ones that give us some depth to magical world of Pokémon, like Bulbasaur's Mysterious Garden, or the ones that goes deeper with a Pokémon's characterization, such as Charizard Chills.

On the same note, the XY series' battles were more rememberable to me than in most other series due to all the special 3D angles and such. It would have made me pay attention longer than usual. The worst should be BW series' battles since 90% of them would be stock images that keep being re-used over and over again with the exact same background. That being said, my favorite battle is Ash vs Kukui in the end of the SM series. Despite being 4-episode long, the subtle dad/son interaction made it special for me. Also I am not ashamed to confess that the overused Type: Wild helps too.
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The XY battles are, how you said, the best of all. There are some weird Pokemon like Slurpuff that can't get an better fight with smoke and... Attack collisions and more Smoke and Pokebillitys. Slurpuff senses.

Isn't it just natural to have senses JN?
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Honestly, I thought that the Darkest Day arc was fine in both the games and the anime. A big reason why I think it worked fine within Sword/Shield was the build up through Sonia learning more about the legends of Galar over the course of the game, as well as Hop's involvement in the climax. It isn't an amazing plot, but I never quite understood why people complained about it as much as they did. Coming right after the Sun/Moon plot didn't help it admittedly, but I thought it was fine.

As for how the anime adapted it, I was generally fine with it. They really needed to provide some build up for it. Not only with having Rose show up earlier, but they really needed to do a bit more with Sonia as well. Like I mentioned before, Sonia becoming more invested in learning about the Galar legends was kind of important for buildup to the climax. It also made her becoming the new Professor feel like a bigger deal. Sonia becoming the professor at the end of the arc just didn't capture that same kind of feeling when she had far less screentime and her storyline was different as well. While there is something to how she felt like she couldn't compare to Leon, I think her slowly becoming more interested in learning about Pokemon like she was in the games was a bit more interesting, or at least made her personality feel more fleshed out.

Despite the lack of buildup, I think that they covered the main plot pretty well. Both Ash and Goh had moments to shine and it didn't really feel rushed either. I think it also helped that they didn't try to add in Hop or any of the Galar rivals to the climax. As much as I love Hop, introducing him right when the Darkest Day arc started would have been terrible. Having Ash and Goh take the roles of the new heroes made more sense. It was generally pretty engaging and fun, although I might be a bit biased since I was happy to see Galar get more attention. Even at the end of the arc, I just kept wishing that the series was a traditional journey through Galar or at least that they could do more with Galar.
The problem with the DD arc isn't episode length, it's that everything was condensed into it. Sonia's arc, Rose's introduction, the history of the Legends, etc, are all things that needed at least one ep each. But no, they all got shoved into a single set of episodes, leaving everything feeling underveloped and underwhelming. Also, there was no reason to do it in the 40s, but I guess we needed to rush out Riolu and Raboot's evolutions because of their (also underdeveloped) bond or whatever!
I think the Darkest Day arc was rememberable and good enough. Sure it should be like in prev seasons right in the end. But they are not doinf Sword and Shield focua, and maybe the focus on how Ash is winning the M8 is enough for the ending.
I think the Darkest Day arc was rememberable and good enough. Sure it should be like in prev seasons right in the end. But they are not doinf Sword and Shield focua, and maybe the focus on how Ash is winning the M8 is enough for the ending.
And thats the problem Galar should be getting focus but it isn't. Every other region got their own series but Galar is forced into to this World tour plot that isn't even done that well.
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