Detective Pikachu leaves the door open for other films set in the Pokemon Universe, including prequels and potential sequels.

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for Detective Pikachu, currently in theaters.

Yes Detective Pikachu does anything, it’s a fantastic sense of world building. Its primary setting, Ryme City, is an inhabited and accessible refuge for humans and Pokémon, with a rich history naturally interwoven into the narrative. Sometimes the movie even hints at major events outside of the main plot that could easily become their own stories.

With the end of Detective Pikachu leaving the door open for a number of follow-ups, let’s take a look at the most likely candidates for what will undoubtedly lead to a full-fledged movie franchise.

Detective duty

detective pikachu

Detective Pikachu ends on a positive note for almost all of the characters. The only one who isn’t in a better place than where he started the movie is Howard Clifford (Bill Nighy), who was arrested for his ploy to merge the Pokémon and humans of Ryme City into one. His son Roger (Chris Geere) takes over Clifford Enterprises and promises to right his father’s crimes. Junior reporter Lucy (Kathryn Newton) gets a promotion, and Tim Goodman (Justice Smith) finds his missing father Harry (Ryan Reynolds) and decides to stay in Ryme City to become a detective.

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Even Mewtwo, who many fans believed to be the film’s main threat, is proving decidedly more benevolent than previous incarnations. Detective Pikachu ends with free Mewtwo and presumably returns to the wild. After fixing the damage Howard caused, Mewtwo even reveals that he merged Harry with his Pikachu in an attempt to save Harry’s life. Although Detective Pikachu no longer exists as a result, the film ends with Harry, Tim, and Pikachu on their way to a new adventure.

Where do we go from here

To be fair, there are a lot of places to go for a movie franchise. Director Rob Letterman suggested in January that Mewtwo would return for a larger role in a proposed sequel. In fact, it has been reported that there is in fact of them Pokémon Movies in Development: One has been described as heavily focusing on Mewtwo, meaning it could be the sequel that Letterman mentioned; the other would be based on Pokémon: red and blue, the original version of Pokemon introduced in the 1990s to Western audiences. Depending on the success of Detective Pikachu and those other movies, it could lead to a fully-fledged Pokémon Cinematic Universe.

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Any proposed sequel would likely center around Tim, Harry, and their Pikachu. However, Ryan Reynolds’ hook actually playing the beloved pocket monster will likely be gone, given the resolution of Detective Pikachu. However, their ability to briefly connect with Mewtwo could make them perfect candidates to return to the wild in search of the creature. The Red Blue the films could even tie into Mewtwo’s overall story by serving as a prequel. In this game, the player character at some point explores the ruins of the lab where Mewtwo was born, otherwise known as Pokemon Mansion. Mewtwo’s origin is even briefly referenced in Detective Pikachu.

On top of that, the film opens up many potential avenues for further exploration. Professional Pokémon Battles Are Teased At The Beginning Detective Pikachu, and could provide an exciting fit on the sports film genre. The film harnesses the horrific potential of certain Pokémon, like Gengar, Aipom, and (especially) Ditto, proving that the franchise can go beyond fantasy, humor, and adventure.

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There’s also the utter lack of fan-favorite antagonists, Team Rocket. The criminal gang uses Pokemon to aid them in their misdeeds, and seeing them target Ryme City could easily set up another dark mystery for the heroes to solve and for Lucy and her Psyduck to investigate. Detective Pikachu laid a solid foundation for what could be the next massive cinematic universe, and it does so by creating a world of possibilities. Detective Pikachu Producer Ali Mendes says he wants to see the current 800 Pokémon on the big screen. He may have his chance.

Directed by Rob Letterman, Detective Pikachu stars Ryan Reynolds, Judge Smith, Kathryn Newton, Suki Waterhouse, Omar Chaparro, Chris Geere, Ken Watanabe and Bill Nighy.

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