LONG post ahead, but there was so much needed to be said about pokemon anime and direction it taken whether some would find it for better or worse.
If this question was asked 6 to 7 years ago i would vote very good, but nowadays i cant give pokemon series more than average score.
I still like pokemon anime having its charms, lighthearted humor and sense of journey focused on exploring new places, cultures, people and world building adding to entertainment.
Along because of several entertaining characters with great personalities having certain appeal going for them(like Ash, Misty, Cilan, May etc).
Battles taking place between all kind of pokemon liking how they improved over time with more strategy and substance being brought to them. And because of prospect of following group of friends going together on adventure,exploring pokemon world and developing their stories.
But highly repetitive nature, overused plots which happened so many times in previous generations and stagnation of characters and storyline over the years dramatically decreased entertainment value and artistic integrity pookemon used to have for me.
Along with several other things such as:
Traveling companions constantly getting replaced just when i grew attached to them and when anime dived into someone story allowing us to get them better. Instead of writers actually deciding to capitalize on their popularity doing continuation of development.
Like Misty departure for example which was disappointing, because she left while there was left much more to be desired(such as her water master dream, backstory, various ambitions she had unfinished with no future going forward provided ) , and always brought great humor and engaging dynamic taking away some of identity and emotional appeal series used to have. But its not only her, same applies to others like, May ,Brock, Dawn, Cilan, Iris etc.
Ending abandoned never to be seen again like friendship with Ash and others, close bonds they formed, their own story and dreams working in ccomplishing dreams and any impact or influence left on stiory and plot history being for nothing like it never bappened before or was relevant in longer run.
Muddling down their legacy, close friendships, started plots and impact on plot in ground defeating message of pokemon being meant to be entity based story which keeps connections with history and builds on itself as whole.
- Lack of innovation in making story as whole more diverse and creative adding new twists to it. Rather than having anime stuck in slump full of restarts and stagnation, instead of taking steps forward. Like Ash not winning pokemon league for change breaking new grounds with his story and dreams giving out impression how hard work and effort is leading somewhere making long journey all that more believable and filled with content Winning one regional tournament wont make him pokemon master, so its not like writers couldn't go forward with him diving deeper into his goal going through more meaningful development. Instead we get rinse and repeat at start of every new region.
-Very scarse continuity and acknowledgment of past events and characters interrupting flow of storyline and world building, eroding foundations on which anime and its history were built. Taking away from consistent following due to not having ties with past and coverage of what happened before, circumstances which molded characters like Ash and amount of growth, struggles they went through to reach point they are standing on right now.
-Lack of originality and writers adding more of their own touch in making anime more as separate media which helps advertize games through different more ingenious ways rather than treating it solely as advertizing tool becoming replica of games at this point basically losing its own identity and chance to have continuous, filled with content storyline where friends stick together in exploring on world, new pokemon and work toward their dreams, going through new adventures and challenges, having us learn new things about them while sharing their own culture and impressions with new people they meet.
Which can be noticed in highly predictable nature nowadays being known long before new saga ends and new one starts what is going to happen(such as Ash losing league, leaving all pokemon behind taking Pikachu with him, companions being threw aside unfinished and never staying long enough to live up to their full potential in favor of new ones getting basic development of friendship and formulaic growth from point A to point B done several times before. Rather than exploring on friendship and human relationships, do continuation of stories started in first place opening doors toeward deeper, more substantial growth etc.
-Or in rehashes of plots overdone so many times before. Fire starter being neglected and abused by trainer with Ash earning its thrust regaining back confidence(see Charizard, Chimchar, Tepig), Ash refusing that Pikavhu evolves(happened both in Kanto and DP), apparent break ups between Jessie, James and Meowth happening at least once per region never leading anywhere and lasting for more than episode, come to mind.
Accompanied with butchered plots which seemed promising and could have lead to great and impacting storyline. Such as GS ball, Team Aqua and Magma fiasco, World tournament(need i say more?) etc.
Personally feeling like nowadays pokemon anime is even more of marketing ploy than before not caring much about consistent story which builds on itself, meaningful friendship and relationship which stays relevant and impacting on plot over time and anyone goal and aspirations beside Ash since whoever joins him ends up discarded like trash with unfinished dreams and open story like he/she never existed or mattered.
Something i think was less prevalent before with pokemon being pervated with more consistent development and story paying attention to past and previous characters building on their growth along with Ashs. Had higher quality of anime plot being treated more like its own story which was centered more around human relationship and expansion of depth of their personalities and relationship. Made sure to treat every plot differently not repeating things happening before with new fresh ideas circulating around and on going story which builds on itself and take things forward following games to lesser degree compared to now.
All of this over the years conributed in me feeling relatively disappointed and saddened over direction in which pokemon series are going . I will forever like pokemon to some extent continuing to follow it until end and give fair chance to everything, but im not gonna lie all of ablove mentioned things made me care less and be nowhere near as enthusiastic and appreciative of pokemon stioryline and quality itself when looking at bigger picture in this days.
Which is why i cannot give it more than average bordering on line with below average score.
Giving pokemon anime rating between 5.5 and 6.3 at this point and time. Sad, but it is what it is.