Start Your Holidays Right With the Musical ‘Pokemon Christmas Bash’ [Video]
I've mentioned before that I am a dude who loves Christmas music, and one of the crown jewels of my collection is The Pokemon Christmas Bash. Released in 2001 as part of the franchise's all-consuming mass media blitz, it is exactly what it sounds like: An album of 10 songs -- plus two karaoke versions! -- about celebrating Christmas in the world of Pokemon.
I look forward to listening to this thing every year, probably because 11 months is just about long enough to forget just how hilariously awful it is. So please, join me in my tradition as I take advantage of the magic of YouTube to bring you The Best Tracks from The Pokemon Christmas Bash!
The album's title track is a pretty strong opener. It's amazing in so, so many ways, chief among them being that it's opens with a DJ cutting "squi-squi-squirtle!" and then goes right into the Pokedex itself rapping. I honestly wish I could've been around to see how the decision was made to lead off not with one of the actual characters, but with the robot voice of the Pokedex busting rhymes.
It's also worth noting that Brock's line about wanting to get with two older women that includes "Santa please with your ho-ho-ho, put them both under the mistletoe" might've had some implications that whoever wrote that line didn't really think through.
Speaking of the characters, James from Team Rocket's verse is maybe the high point of this album, and possibly of human history. That dude is just cold David Bowie-ing it, to the point where I wish this would've led to a second album called Ziggy Staryu and the Galvantulas From Mars.
Man, I hope you guys are ready for a heartbreaker, because this song is one of the few times that the series actually acknowledges the fact that it's based on sending a bunch of 10 year-olds out to wander around a country where any unmowed lawn contains an animal that can shoot lightning out of its face, and where a global criminal organization assaults them on a daily basis.
Also, it's important to recognize that Brock misses the 29 brothers and sisters that he left in the care of his deadbeat dad, and Misty feels homesick for the siblings she absolutely hates, but Ash could give a f*** about being away from his mom on Christmas. If it ain't about catching 'em all, he just does not care.
I am not even kidding when I say that "St. Patrick's day is dull, Arbor Day is borin' / and who wants to go through all that Yom Kippur-in'?" is the single best line in a Christmas song, ever.
There are a lot of great songs on this album -- I'm partial to Misty's solo joint, the Brenda Lee-esque "Winter is the Coolest Time of Year" -- but for my final selection, I'm going with the Christmas medley.
On a lot of Christmas albums, they'd devote the whole thing to just swapping out words of classic Christmas songs with lyrics about whatever franchise they were promoting (see the TMNT's inexplicably Jamaican "Deck the Halls With Pepperoni"), but Pokemon crams it all into one huge megatrack. And not only that, but there are legitimately great stuff in here: "Nurse Joy to the World" might be obvious, but ending "Good King Winceslas" with "I choose Ten-ta-cruuuuuuuelll" is amazing.
The thing is, the opening of this track invites the kids who are listening to sing along with old favorites, and then changes all the words! It seriously goes out of its way to set you up for failure, at least until you take the time to purge your thoughts of everything not related to Pokemon.
And really... isn't that the true meaning of Christmas?