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Pokémon is not the only series based on kids that find and collect pocket-sized monsters which they can use to duel each other. After the media franchise rose to popularity during the early 90s, numerous other companies entered the market to cash in on this surprising new trend with properties of their own. These included Yu-Gi-Oh! and, of course, Digimon.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with the source material, Digimon tells the familiar story of a group of youngsters who get sucked into a virtual reality which they must try to both save and escape via befriending a certain species of digital monsters – also known as Digimon – that can evolve into cooler, more powerful forms depending on the level of trust they have with their human partners.
Sound familiar? It’s supposed to. Still, Digimon may not only be connected to Pokémon in terms of concept and story. Rather, a theory which began circulating on Reddit some years ago suggests that the universes of these two insanely popular media empires may in fact be connected to one another.
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Specifically, the theory holds that Digimon are actually corrupted Pokémon, and here’s why. In the Pokémon video games, players can store excess monsters on a PC conveniently located in the corner of every Pokécenter. In the process, the critters are converted into files. When these files are deleted – which the player may do when they’ve caught so many Pokémon that their PC has no storage left – the discarded files become Digimon.
As ScreenRant explains:
The theory certainly makes sense from a visual standpoint, as Digimon typically feature grittier, elaborate, and — to use some vocabulary belonging to the series’ key demographic — cooler designs compared to their cute and cuddly Pokémon counterparts. The series is also much darker on a meta-level. Whereas Pokémon is an underdog story supported by textbook themes of confidence and persistence, Digimon’s narrative covers anything from corruption to parental neglect, and much, much more.
The theory makes sense not only from a logical point of view, but an aesthetic one as well. As ScreenRant points out, Digimon do actually look like corrupted Pokémon. Any fan of the series knows that Digimon have more detailed and fearsome designs than their cute and cuddly counterparts. Of course, this was probably done so as to appeal to an older audience which was growing tired of Pokémon – and it certainly seems to have worked out.