If you haven’t been watching this mini-series, you need to. It is an adorable re-imagining of the Pokémon TCG competitive scene that doesn’t require any knowledge of Pokémon or the card game to enjoy. It has a great protagonist, a fun story, and a cute art style. If you weren’t playing the TCG before watching this, you’re going to want to after.
As I did with last weeks episode, I am going to over analyze what happened in Worlds. This will contain spoilers, so make sure you watch the episode before reading the rest. If you enjoy these posts, make sure you like, comment, subscribe, and share this with your friends.
Last week, Ava experienced her first big loss. She became so consumed by her desire to win that she forgot to have fun. The loss devastates Ava because she feels like she let everyone down. This pressure breaks her, and Ava decides to quit the game. She stops going to the club or talking to her friends because of the shame she feels for losing internationals.
In previous episodes, we’ve seen her mother try to talk to Ava about the competitive scene. The cards that were the catalyst for Ava’s adventure once belonged to her mother. We got the sense that Ava’s mother was also a competitive player and that Ava’s natural talent might have also been passed down through her. In this episode, confirmation through some important back story. We get to see Ava’s mother comfort her from a place of empathy, and it is a very cute moment. Ava’s mother faced a similar loss and quit the hobby as a result. She advises Ava not to do the same and to remember why she started playing.
This is an important moment for Ava because not only does she learn how to deal with loss, she remembers why she started playing in the first place. When Ava played the game to win and be the champion she thought everyone wanted her to be, she lost the connection she had to the game. You see less of the Pokemon and more of the mounting stress that looms over Ava as she grinds through the scene. The Pokémon TCG is important to Ava because it is what helped her make important friends and find her place in society. Remembering why she played in the first place helps her deal with the stress, and she starts to have fun again. At this moment, the series shifts focus to the Pokémon, and the audience gets to see a cute and fun battle. Unfortunately, this marks the end of the series, but it was such a fun ride. I loved watching Ava grow as a character, and it even got me excited to play more Pokemon.
As someone who plays a lot of card games, this series is amazing. It had a fun story, cute art, and animation, and it was able to capture why card games are so fun. It is easy to lose sight of what’s important when you are climbing the ladder, and even easier to be stuck in a stressful grind. I’ve done my fair share of obsessing over rank, and remember the tilting frustration that came with the grind. Games and hobbies are supposed to be fun. When they start feeling like a job, it is okay to take a break. Don’t let the climb become more important than your love for the hobby.
Anyways, if you haven’t watched Path to the Peak, go check it out on the official Pokémon YouTube.