Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Hokey Poké 

"I choose you, Pikachu!" Pokémon comes to life onstage.

Is this really any weirder than H.R.Pufnstuff?
  • Is this really any weirder than H.R.Pufnstuff?
Most parents don't have the faintest idea why their offspring flock to the oddball influx of next-generation toys. These strange idols, with their multimedia blitz of TV shows, movies, games, and figurines, seem to have the wee ones programmed, sending America's youth into the toy aisles as if sustenance were now packaged by Nintendo and Hasbro. But in case your puzzlement hadn't already reached maddening proportions, Pokémon Live! will be in town through October 8 -- a glitzy stage show based on a video popularized by, of all things, a derivative children's card game.

"I was aware there was a thing called Pokémon, but I had no idea what it was about or what Pokémon were," says Dominic Nolfi, who brings main character Ash to life. "I just kind of learned as I went along."

Which means you can, too. Snatch your fledglings from their caches of import toys, drag them to the CSU Convention Center, and while he or she squirms in a seat with elation, you can jab your index finger toward the bizarre stage production and ask, "Now, what the hell is going on?"

If it helps, the plot's main characters -- Pokémon trainers Ash, Misty, and Brock -- are on a journey to find a diamond badge. Such badges are won through violent but fun combat between Pokémon (short for "pocket monsters") that are captured in the wild, raised, and then trained to capture more monsters or the ever-precious badges. "These badges are like Olympic gold medals," explains Nolfi. "They're like a symbol of victory."

Sound easy enough? "They also lose the map on the way there and bicker among themselves," Nolfi says. "Then learn about friendship and a dark secret Ash's mother has."

If you're still confused, don't fret -- others have been there. "The set is huge," Nolfi adds as a ray of hope. "There's a lot of pyros and explosions, and the singing and dancing is top-notch."

And at least it's not the Teletubbies.

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at news@clevescene.com.

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club


Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.


Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.


Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Speaking of Highlights

More by Keith Gribbins

Read the Digital Print Issue

December 1, 2021

View more issues

Most Popular

No recently-read stories.

Visit the archives…

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Calendar

© 2021 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.


Website powered by Foundation