I have to say, Pokemon: Detective Pikachu was a surprisingly good for a movie based on a video game franchise. I’m aware that sounds like I’m damning the feature with faint praise, but no… I really did like it.
Clearly I’m not alone in this opinion, as the first ever live-action Pokemon flick has been performing admirably at the box office, and even managed to pick up a decent amount of critical praise along the way. People really dig Pikachu, obviously.
I think we can all agree that the biggest highlight of Detective Pikachu was seeing the incredibly detailed CG renderings of some of our favourite Pokemon. The likes of Squirtle, Bulbasaur, and Eevee have never looked cuter – even if I still have the occasional nightmare about that Mr Mime.
Stephen Molyneaux is just one of the artists who we have to thank for helping to “translate the wonderful designs by Ken Sugimori into the real world”, and some of his early designs of these 3D sculpts from VFX studio BadClay and freelance sculptor Abner Marin are just too adorable for me to be able to properly comprehend.
Just look at the Eevee below. LOOK. AT. IT. The little paws, the fluffy chest, the big ears – it’s too much, man. I honestly think this version looks better than the one we (briefly) saw in Detective Pikachu.
Slaking is… well, I’m not going to sugarcoat it, Slaking is less cute. I think we all need to take a moment and appreciate that some poor sod had to sit and spend time (probably at least a few hours) rendering those hairy nipples. Let that sink in.
I also feel like this particular Slaking looks like the kind of guy who’s going to start slagging off a girl for “leading him on” when she turns down his offer of a drink at the bar.
Next up, we have a majestic Arcanine, who just looks like the best damn boy I ever did see. I’d take home ten of them and fluff all their tummies at the same time, if I could. Sometimes in my dreams, I do just that.
Oh, and you have to respect the hustle from this Pidgeot. If I ran a fruit stall in the city, I would not argue with a bird this size.
You can see more of Stephen’s wonderful work by heading over to his Artstation page.
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Ewan Moore is a journalist at UNILAD Gaming who still quite hasn’t gotten out of his mid 00’s emo phase. After graduating from the University of Portsmouth in 2015 with a BA in Journalism & Media Studies (thanks for asking), he went on to do some freelance words for various places, including Kotaku, Den of Geek, and TheSixthAxis, before landing a full time gig at UNILAD in 2016.