There's a lot of cautious buzz going around the film adaptation of Detective Pikachu. Even though Game Of Thrones is starting its long-awaited final season and Marvel Studios is about to bring 10 years of Avengers to a close, fans haven't forgotten that a live-action Pokémon movie is happening. At first a dicey prospect, each new trailer makes the movie seem more promising. The creatures look appropriately adorable and weird, the script is amusingly self-aware, and the references are on point.
But where's the heart? Any Pokémon fan will tell you that the franchise is based in a certain good-naturedness. Despite it being about cute animals beating the crap out of each other, every Pokémon story goes out of its way to remind us that it's all out of love. To live with Pokémon is to form a bond, a promise to co-exist with these creatures in harmony. Fortunately, the newest trailer for Detective Pikachu is here to show us that it's aware of these themes.
Set to "What A Wonderful World," the trailer mostly features shots of Pokémon just living their lives and being adorable while doing it. Charmander skitter through a forest, Squirtle pops out of the water, and Jigglypuff is singing its heart out. The movie's actual plot, about a young man named Tim who teams up with a talking Pikachu to find his missing father, is barely mentioned.
Instead, we get a little over a minute of Pokémon being wholesome. "This is the spirit of the childhood-defining franchise," this trailer seems to say. A Poké parent plays with its kids, and Psyduck is there to give Pikachu a hug. It's all punctuated by Pikachu comforting Tim, telling him that "if your dad was here, he would hug you so hard your bones would pop."
Even Pikachu's strange remark (delivered with Ryan Reynolds' signature irreverence) doesn't deter Tim from sharing a genuine moment with the yellow mouse. If this trailer is any indication, this movie might just be able to deliver heart and humor in equal measure. Perhaps, it could even live up to that lofty status of "a movie for both kids and adults." We'll find out on May 10th when it releases in theaters.