During the closing ceremony of the Rio Olympics, there were a lot of big animated faces. From Mario to Pacman, we were looking at the big dogs, but Pokémon because the series isn’t as internationally recognised.
But how can it not be internationally recognised? Pokémon GO has dominated the summer and most news sites. There’s also the trading card game, the movies, all the spin-off games. Pokémon has even gone on to sell 200 million games so it not being recognised is odd, but it’s just the way the cookie crumbled back in January when the Tokyo Olympic/Paralympic Committee preparations began. In fact according to one committee member, they told Buzzfeed Japan, that the timing just didn’t feel right to include Pokémon, especially when the likes of Mario’s franchise has sold over 320 million games.
Then of course there was the Mario/Rio pun. The committee felt it was just too good to pass up, so Mario just had to be their “Number 1 guy.” Although they could have gone the Pokémon route and still have the pun happen, but it would require using Lucario compared to Pikachu and although a lot of us like Lucario, not nearly enough people know of Lucario.
So yes Pokémon was brought up, but it was also put down for not being nearly as famous as Mario, but does it actually matter? The video we got was great, especially when Japan’s Prime Minister came out of the tunnel dressed as Mario, it was insane and if he came out as a Pokémon, honestly it wouldn’t have gone down as well. This is one of those things where Pokémon is better off being left out and I’m glad they was. Pokémon would have felt too forced in, as would Link from The Legend of Zelda and Samus Aran from Metroid. But that’s just my opinion, if you think different, be sure to comment it down below.