There are some issues with putting the pokemon world into our world, and in my case putting a whole new island chain in the North Pacific, but I think the potential it has far outweighs any problems. First, it brings international attention to the pokemon league, or at least emerging international attention with foreigners trying to compete.
It also gives villainous groups like Team Rocket a more coherent role. Not only are they involved in stealing pokemon and conducting experiments for supposed world domination, but they're exporting pokemon (something I have decided is a highly illegal act), and getting their hands in every illegal trade in the world (drugs, etc.), so they can be a real international crime syndicate, and leaving Giovanni living comfortably in a mansion(one of several) and virtually untouchable.
Also, in this story, at the bottom of the Team Rocket pyramid there are two kinds of grunts: full-time, aspiring agents, and part-time, hired labor. And its very easy to tell the difference, though they're both essentially disposable henchmen.
I'm sure everyone interested in Pokemon knows about the Jinx controversy, and have also heard the arguments about Ludicolo possibly being racist as well. One site asylums.insanejournal.com/scan…
argues that it really comes down to the fact that no one has been complaining about Ludicolo. But I'd say the whole thing might be backwards. While Jynx may have been based on negative racial stereotypes,* those images are all very dated. Live action and animated images of people in blackface and other such negative images have been off the airwaves for decades before any of us were born. On the other hand, any 21st century child can look at Lombre and Ludicolo and clearly understand that these are depictions of Mexicans, not to mention the characters of the day in episodes featuring these pokemon are obviously based on Mexicans. So if either of them should be banned, it should be Ludicolo.
Do I think that any of these characters should be banned? No. I don't think cartoons will mess up kids and their perception of different people. If your kid grows up to join the KKK, it's your fault, not Japanese animators.
Now if any cartoon messed me up as a kid, it was probably Tin Tin: non-Western countries are full of people trying to kill you.