Starter Squad is an animated web series based on the popular franchise Pokémon made by Pierce Shipp. It's meant to be a 12 episode series, according to the creator himself.
The focus of the series is the titular and iconic Starter Pokemon of the Kanto Region of the Pokemon franchise, following their adventures in their quest to evolve and become the strongest Pokémon of all time. Along their way they make enemies, develop genuine friendship, and even come face-to-face with forces that will change their world forever.
Why It Rocks
- The animation is very good for Source Film Maker standards, which improved over time in the series including better lighting, lip-syncing, and facial animations.
- Unlike most web series, the creator does not rush the series out and instead takes time to make it, this could be the reason why it only has 9 episodes despite being made in 2013, similarly to Quantic Dream.
- Episode 9 alone took around 2-3 Years to make, it started development since 2017 and released in 2019.
- Episode 10 is still being developed to this year 2021, it started development since 2019.
- Many of the characters are very well written.
- Charmander while hot-tempered is a decent protagonist voiced by the creator of the series.
- Leader Caterpie is a great antagonist of the series, it wanted revenge on Charmander for killing it's brother Pablo after cheating in a Pokemon Battle.
- Squirtle is a good secondary protagonist, while he doesn't like to get bossed around. He later trained with the Leader Caterpie to defend himself.
- Amazing soundtrack for the series taken from the Pokemon games.
- The original song made for the series "Rock Smasher" is also great.
- It had many great episodes such as "The Lizard Slayer" "Ooo Look At Me I'm A Big Scary Ghost" and "Fight Fire With Fire".
- Amazing voice acting from Pierce Shipp himself, Jill Harris, Mick Lauer, and Dreux Ferrano Jr.
- Many fan-dubs exist of the series, which many of them are also good.
- The scene in Episode 9, where Charmander fights a bunch of Caterpies is awesome!
- It could promote empathy.
- Most of the character designs looks cute!
- The Humans are very annoying in the series as the only words they say is the word "Human" over and over again, possibly due to the series being centered around the Pokemon instead of the humans.
- Many Plotholes.
- How can Pokemon claim other Pokemon, let alone using Trainer's Pokeballs?
- Bulbasaur gets poisoned despite being half poison type. Not only that he heals on his own, so Charmander and Squirtle raided a Pokemon Center all for nothing.
- Mewtwo can teleport, why can't he do that during Episode 8?
- There are some times where Charmander could be mean-spirited or dumb.
The series got positive reception from viewers, it currently has a 8.7/10 Rating on IMDB.
Note some of the Trivia contains spoilers.
- Early Development of Episode 10 was leaked online on Pierce Shipp's Twitch account and then uploaded to YouTube by Bulbasaur Starter Squad - Alek, it features early animation and Squirtle is shown to evolve. All of the voice acting was already finished, and the animation is still being made. According to Pierce Shipp on his Discord Server, Episode 10 will be released in the Middle of 2021.
- Many of the Cave artwork from Episode 9 was done by a Twitter user named @PrimatePunk