For almost as long as there have been Pokemon video games, there’s been a Pokemon TV show. In fact, the Pokemon anime series debuted in the United States a few weeks before the first Pokemon games launched here, so as far as we Americans are concerned, the Pokemon TV show even predates the games. There have been quite a few Pokemon spin-offs and miniseries throughout the years, but now it sounds like Netflix is going to give us our biggest one yet.
As Variety reports today, Netflix is supposedly working on a live-action Pokemon series. Variety learned this news from sources with knowledge of the project, who say that Joe Henderson will write the show and serve as its executive producer. Henderson is the co-showrunner and executive producer on Netflix’s Lucifer, and considering that show is about to wrap up with the debut of its final season, it certainly seems like the timing lines up well.
Variety’s sources also say that the series will be “akin” to Detective Pikachu, but it’s unclear what kind of narrative it will follow. An obvious narrative would be the one followed by the anime series and the video games, in which children set out on adventures to become Pokemon trainers when they turn 10-years-old. The anime series follows Ash Ketchum on such a journey as he adventures through regions introduced in the Pokemon video games.
Netflix would be a good home for a new Pokemon series. Netflix already hosts a fair amount of Pokemon content, from the first season of the mainline anime series to spin-offs like Pokemon Journeys. A live-action Pokemon show would be quite the undertaking, as there isn’t very much live-action content to be found in the Pokemon universe. In fact, Detective Pikachu is really the only thing we have to point to as an example of live-action Pokemon media.
We’ll see if Netflix confirms Variety’s report, but it’s worth noting that the project is said to be in its “early days,” so it could be quite some time before Netflix is ready to announce anything. We’ll keep an ear to the ground for more, though.