The longest-running Pokémon manga is coming to an end, as it has been announced that the final issue of the Pocket Monsters series will be released next week in CoroCoro Comics.
Pocket Monsters is a manga series that is created by Kosaku Anakubo, and it's one of the oldest parts of the Pokémon media franchise. The first issue was released in November '96, while Pokémon Red & Green were released in February '96. For frame of reference, the Pokémon anime didn't start until 1997. Pocket Monsters is notable for its inappropriate humor and the series has become infamous for Red showing off his private parts in one of the early issues. The version of Red from Pocket Monsters has been traveling to different regions with a mischievous Clefairy for over twenty years.
It seems that Red's journey is finally coming to an end, as it has been announced that the final issue of the Pocket Monsters manga will be running in the next issue of CoroCoro Comics. The news has broken on Japanese social media and has been translated by Twitter user Dogasu.
Oh wow.— Dogasu (@DogasusBackpack) October 11, 2019
Kosaku Anakubo's "Pocket Monsters" manga, which has been running in various CoroCoro magazines for the past 23 years or so, is finally coming to an end.
The final chapter will appear in the issue of CoroCoro Comics that goes on sale next week. https://t.co/4kkrTLn7f2
It feels as if the Pokémon franchise is currently undergoing many different changes, which is something long overdue. The mainline Pokémon games are finally coming to a home console, the roster has been cut for the first time, Ash has finally won a Pokémon League, and the longest-running piece of Pokémon media outside of the games is coming to an end.
Pocket Monsters has never received much attention outside of Japan, especially in the face of Pokémon Adventures, which has its own dedicated fanbase who adore its long-running storylines. The final chapter of Pocket Monsters represents another ending within the Pokémon franchise and marks another step in the new direction that the series is taking. It's possible the author simply wishes to retire, as twenty-three years is a long time to be drawing any comic, but the timing seems to match the other shifts within the Pokémon franchise.
The final issue of Pocket Monsters will be released on October 15, 2019.