AAAHH!!! Pocket Monsters Fan Animation Unites the Classic Cartoon With Pokémon

An unlikely mashup of Pokémon and a classic Nickelodeon cartoon series has gone viral on Twitter, proving that while their origins might be different, both Pocket Monsters and Aaahh!!! Real Monsters go unexpectedly well together.

The video was posted by cartoonist and animator Brian Bear, who currently creates storyboards for the Pencilmation YouTube series. It reimagines the Aaahh!!! Real Monsters opening sequence with Pokémon characters, replacing the rabbit-like Ickis, the black and white Oblina and the eyeball-holding Krumm with the likes of Pikachu, Gothorita and Gloom. A number of other iconic characters from the Pokémon anime appear in the short, including Professor Oak and the series' original protagonist trio of Ash Ketchum, Misty and Brock.

Bear originally uploaded the video to Vimeo in 2016 and promoted it on Tumblr, writing: "Done in Flash, mostly rotoscoping, but some new animation was created. All the backgrounds were redrawn in Photoshop. I tried to cram in as many Pokémon references as I could, so look sharp." In the latest repost of the video, which has received over 2,700 likes and 600 retweets at the time of writing, Bear tweeted: "You can tell how old this is because I link my long abandoned Tumblr page."

Aaahh!!! Real Monsters ran for four seasons on Nickelodeon from 1994 to 1997. The show, developed by Rugrats and Duckman creator Gábor Csupó and The Simpsons writer Peter Gaffney, revolved around Ickis, Oblina and Krumm attending a monster school in the sewers beneath New York City, learning how to scare humans. Aaahh!!! Real Monsters starred the voices of Charlie Adler, Christine Cavanaugh and David Eccles as the bumbling trio, and also featured appearances from the likes of Tim Curry, who played a bee-like monster named Zimbo, and Jim Belushi, who portrayed series antagonist Simon the Monster Hunter.

The series encompassed 52 episodes and never quite reached the heights of other Nickelodeon series like Rugrats. Nevertheless, the show's kooky characters are fondly remembered to this day, with Oblina most recently popping up in the 2021 fighting game Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl. 

While Nintendo's monster-collecting franchise shares little in common with Nickelodeon's show aside from also focusing on colorful creatures, the anime version of Pokémon happened to hit TV Tokyo in Japan in 1997, the same year that Aaahh!!! Real Monsters went off the air. The English localization of the anime debuted in the United States in 1998 ahead of the release of Pokémon Red and Blue and became a major hit one year later when it moved to the Kids' WB programming block.

Source: Twitter, Tumblr

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