From Stage to Screen: The Untold Story of MechaMew2

Get (almost) all of them

From Stage to Screen: The Untold Story of MechaMew2
Randy Meeks

Randy Meeks

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If you’re of an age and you’re humming “I’ll catch ’em all without exception”, I’m sure you can’t help but follow it up with “Get all the Pokémon“. But, although it may surprise you, the Pokérap, that song that listed the 151 creatures of the first generation, didn’t include all of them… Nor was it the only song made based on the anime. Welcome to an unforgettable journey: that of that Pokémon that was born and died, never to be rescued again, in the American musical based on the Japanese anime based on the Game Boy video game. There’s a lot to process here.

Get them all

September 22, 2000: the two Twin Towers were still looking down on a New York that had just entered the new millennium infected by a fad that many thought was passing: that of Pokémon. In this absolute crazy Pokemania of the 90s, Michael Slade, a scriptwriter of children’s plays and soap operas who had absolutely no idea who or what Pikachu was, saw the premiere of Pokémon Live!, an absolutely lysergic hour-and-a-half musical that would end up opening at Radio City Music Hall… And which was advertised as the only place to see a new Pokémon. It was true. That way.

The musical, and I can’t stress this enough, was official, even if the plot is the craziest thing you’ve ever heard: Giovanni, the head of Team Rocket, challenges all trainers to beat him in exchange for winning the new Diamond medal. But his goal is not to fight, but to make the new Pokémon he has created, capable of copying any move, become unstoppable. His name, MechaMew2.

If it doesn’t ring a bell, it’s perfectly logical: the creature has never left the stage to get into any kind of Nintendo product. The thing is, MechaMew2 only has two moves left to learn: Lightning and Thunder Impact, which, apparently, only Ash’s Pikachu knows. The thing is that the Paleta Town trainer loses and is about to die by a MechaMew2’s Hyper Lightning, but Mewtwo appears out of nowhere and saves him with a force field, showing, by the way, Ash’s happy memories to the bug. You’re not expecting the ending.

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Well I’m dying

After learning what love is, MechaMew2 learns to talk, self-destructs in front of Giovanni and Ash, who does not hide his attraction for Misty (and vice versa: his is the song “I want to tell you what I feel, and tell you that I love you”), gives him the Diamond medal. How do you feel? The Pokémon Company didn’t want to know anything once the musical was released and only released a letter with his face inside the LCG… and unofficially.

The very Pokémon fans see their theories more or less rewarded during these 90 minutes, where it is discovered that Ash’s mother had a relationship with Giovanni when they were both teenagers, although he is not his father. Or is he. Who knows. The theory is still up in the air. The musical, which you can find at very low quality on YouTube, mixed songs from the two albums of the franchise with original tunes, and were sung by people… who were not well.

Andrew Rannells (Girls, The prom) played James, from Team Rocket, in the provincial tour, and more than once has stated that he regrets every day of his life, going so far as to say that he would rather have done snuff or porn. For his part, Michael Slade, the screenwriter, said that he only had six months to write the script while attending very long meetings where they discussed everything from Pikachu’s height to what he could do (or not) in the plot.

Apparently, no one stopped him in time when he said “Hey, I have an idea: How about the name MechaMew2?”. Get them all. Except one.

Randy Meeks

Randy Meeks

Editor specializing in pop culture who writes for websites, magazines, books, social networks, scripts, notebooks and napkins if there are no other places to write for you.

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