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Kadabra is finally free! The original image was by Bob Jagendorf and remixed under CC BY-NC 2.0.

Kadabra returns, a weird chapter in Pokémon history ends

In this week’s event that no one had on their 2020 Bingo card, the magician Uri Geller announced he would allow Pokémon to resume using Kadabra on trading cards.

I don’t blame you if you just went “what?” But it’s an interesting part of Pokémon’s history, and a development that nerds like me probably thought would never happen.

So, here’s the story of why Pokémon hasn’t printed a Kadabra card since 2003 and why that may soon change.

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These eyes have seen a lot of wah but they're never gonna see another wah like I had with you. Drawing by Ronan Lyver, who has been promoted to de facto art director.

Waluigi needs a video game. Why not a dating simulator

When Nintendo finally lets Waluigi be the hero of his own game, it ought to be a dating simulator.

I’m serious and I have good reasons for this argument. Obviously, it’s unlikely Nintendo would make a dating sim of any kind, especially not with one of its major characters. But if they were to do it, there is no one better for the leading role than Waluigi. It seems equally unlikely he’ll ever get a leading role, though, since he is still waiting for one 20 years after his debut.

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Bright colours, cool poses, Super Nintendo and Crystal Pepsi: This is exactly what the 90s were.

The 90s, an age of weird drinks and 16-bit video games

This article about the 90s first appeared on the old mediaareplural.ca in August, 2016. Crystal Pepsi was actually available in stores. Regrettably, Pepsi discontinued the beverage a second time, so posting this is basically a nostalgia trip about a nostalgia trip.

Crystal Pepsi is back and so are the 90s! Or, they were, for a moment in my apartment, about which I have prepared this special report.

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This social media Banksy was created by me and is a violation of several brand guidelines. I swapped the logos because it's all the same.

Rip offs ranked: A look at social media Stories clones

Twitter’s new Fleets feature has a lot of people on my feed complaining, and very few people uh … fleeting? Posting Instagram Stories except on Twitter? Hardly anyone I follow is using the feature.

The company assured users Fleets were a success in a condescending post that also was not well received. If brands had feelings, perhaps Twitter would feel sad. Alas, it can neither think nor feel.

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Okay so maybe listening to Mouth Dreams in bed with spotlights on my face in the style of the album's cover was a bad idea. Photo by Ronan Lyver.

Mouth Dreams is a masterpiece and a nightmare

Neil Cicierega makes music I would have played on Media Are Plural when it was a radio show. His Mouth series of albums (Mouth Sounds, Mouth Silence, Mouth Moods and now Mouth Dreams) feature mashups of songs primarily from the 1980s, 90s and 2000s, with an eclectic list of other found audio and older music thrown in.

Cicierega manages to combine these sound waves into music that is distinctly his own. These aren’t the sort of spliced-together tunes meant to poke fun at the similarity of pop songs. This is audio collage, parts of other music extracted and rejoined to create a work that bears no resemblance of the original.

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I didn't want to use actual ahegao content, so I had to make a safe-for-work alternative. Photo by Ronan Lyver.

Instagram’s algorithm doesn’t know anything about me

Back in the halcyon days when Media Are Plural was a radio show, circa 2013-14, I made some shows about the positive aspects of social media. This was in the height of Tumblr, before Twitter and Facebook became a cesspool of disinformation (although Facebook was garbage even back then), a time when Instagram hadn’t started cribbing functions from other platforms, people were actually using Snapchat, algorithm wasn’t a buzzword, and Vine not only existed but was the hot new thing. I saw the potential these platforms offered as a creative outlet for self-expression and connecting with friends. You could still view posts in chronological order!

Oh, how things change.

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This cellulose nitrate film has decayed beyond salvation. Photo by wikimedia user Hansmuller and used under CC BY-SA 4.0.

Lost media: a look at art lost to time and space

When mediaareplural.ca went offline back in 2018, a year after I had stopped updating it, all the content (sort of) disappeared. It had been indexed on the Wayback Machine though, so you could go there to reread anything I had written. Nothing is ever truly deleted from the internet, after all, so it wasn’t a case of lost media. But all the links to the old site were dead.

The content also existed offline on my computer, because that’s where I had written it all. That is, with one exception.

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Yu-Gi-Oh and the card game that it spawned were part of a trend. Photo by Flikr user wiphey, used under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0.

Trends and fads are different concepts

This article on trends and fads first appeared on the old mediaareplural.ca in June, 2016.

Last week I talked about how Pokémon is not a fad, sticking it to 1990s adults and settling once and for all a debate no one has had for 20 years. I’m not content to leave it at that, though. I love righteously correcting errors, especially when the stakes are so low. Does it really matter whether we wield terms like “fad” and “trend” with precision? What is a fad? What is a trend? Well …

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Pokémon Sword and Shield are the eighth generation of games in the long-running franchise.

Pokémon wasn’t a fad, parents – here’s why

This article about Pokémon first appeared on the old mediaareplural.ca in June, 2016.

When I was seven years old I was obsessed with Pokémon. That remained true for years, and even today I play the games, trade the cards and partake in the fandom of the series. But for some reason, every adult in my life back in the late 90s made a point of warning me that Pokémon was just a “fad” that would eventually be forgotten.

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