From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
The Pokémon franchise first reached Vietnam in the early 2000s. Currently, the license to the Pokémon franchise has been held by GoGo Entertainment Co. since 2013.
Due to the high popularity of PC gaming, dedicated game consoles are not very popular in Vietnam. Possibly as a result of this, there are currently no companies that are authorized to officially sell or distribute Nintendo products and/or Pokémon games in Vietnam. However, there are some specialty shops that import games and consoles into Vietnam to sell, usually North American versions.
The original series of the Pokémon anime aired on VTV3, an official national free-to-watch TV channel in Vietnam, with the name "Pokémon". This version of the anime was a voice-over translation rather than being dubbed into Vietnamese.
Phương Nam Film
Additionally, another voice-over translation was available of the original series and the Advanced Generation series, released on VCD by Phương Nam Film. The Japanese version was used for these releases, with character and location names pronounced the same as in Japanese. A variety of sources were used for Pokémon names, including names wholly or partially based on the Japanese names and names translated from the official Chinese Pokémon names. In this version, the word "Pokémon" itself was translated into "Bửu Bối Thần Kỳ", directly from Chinese. PNF's released ended with AG088
In winter 2013, HTV3, a cable channel focused on children and families, created a poll on their website for everyone to vote for programs they would like to see aired on HTV3. HTV3 is well-known for dubbing all of the programs they air on their channel. Pokémon was one of the choices, and within a few weeks, it was announced that HTV3 would air the Pokémon anime for the first time on January 25, 2014. The series began on HTV3 with the Best Wishes series, which currently airs on Saturday and Sunday mornings at 9:30am, with the same episode repeating again at 5:30pm on the same day.
The Vietnamese dub on HTV3 is based directly on the Japanese version. Pokémon and characters are referred by their Japanese names, while move, Ability and item names are translated into Vietnamese. Unlike HTV3's other shows, the original Japanese themes are used, rather than themes dubbed in Vietnamese. The songs Best Wishes! and Fanfare of the Heart are used as the opening and ending themes for the whole series, even after the points which they would have been switched in the Japanese version. Beginning from BW070, a subtitled Vietnamese translation of the lyrics to Fanfare of the Heart began airing with the ending theme.
A controversy arose with fans due to HTV3 re-dubbing many of the Pokémon cries (except for Ash's Pikachu), despite that the Pokémon names are the same as in the Japanese version.
HTV3's run of the series ended with BW108. HTV3 also aired 9 Pokemon Movie from M10 though M18, starting from July 2018.
The XY series began being aired on VTV2 from September 28, 2015, with two time slots. Half of an episode (12 minutes) is aired from Monday to Saturday at 17:45 while full episodes (25 minutes) are aired on Saturday and Sunday at 10:40. An official Facebook fan page and YouTube channel were created for fans to discuss and take part in various activities. Weekly games pertaining to the broadcast are held with Pokémon merchandise offered as prizes for the winners. The Vietnamese dub on VTV2 was based on the Japanese version of the series. VTV2's run of the series ended with XY093.
The Best Wishes series was uploaded to the POPS Kids YouTube channel from October 28, 2017 to April 29, 2018. BW055, BW076, and BW077 were not uploaded to the channel and are skipped in the episode numbering. The Vietnamese dub that aired on HTV3 is used through BW108 including the Professor Oak's Pokémon Live Caster segments; the dub of the remainder of the series does not include the segments.
The Sun & Moon series began premiering on the POPS Kids app with the twentieth season airing from May 31, 2018 to July 5, 2018. A few days following its availability in the app, the episodes are made available on their YouTube channel. The dub uses footage from the English dub of the series (including the opening theme and background music), while it continues to use Japanese names and terms.
The XY series was uploaded to the POPS Kids YouTube channel from August 17, 2018 to February 27, 2019. The Vietnamese dub that aired on VTV2 is used through XY093, while the Mega Evolution Specials and episodes from XY094 onward that were not previously dubbed are dubbed using based on from the English dub, including the background music.
The original series was uploaded to the POPS Kids YouTube channel starting with EP001 on May 17, 2019. Unlike the previous voice-over translations, the series is dubbed into Vietnamese based on the original Japanese version.
- Note: All names are shown in Eastern order.
The voice director for the official Vietnamese dub of the Pokémon anime is Nguyễn Anh Tuấn (Võ Ngọc Quyên at Novel Production). The dialogue editing is done by TVM CORP (Ace Media from BW109, and Novel Production from M10 to M18). The visual technical managers for the series are Thanh Mai, Duy Quang, Nhựt Minh, Huy Tú, Tấn Trạng and Quang Minh. The audio technical managers for the series are Minh Khương, Tào Tịch, Kim Long, Quốc Tuân and Phong Nguyên.
- Main article: List of Vietnamese Pokémon themes
For the original series on POPS Kids, the original Japanese opening and ending themes are used.
For the Best Wishes series on POPS Kids, Best Wishes! and Fanfare of the Heart are used from BW001 to BW020, shown with Vietnamese subtitles and credits in place of the original Japanese lyrics and credits, with the opening additionally being shown with synchronized, romanized subtitles. From BW021 to BW052, the opening is shown in the same manner, but the ending theme is skipped entirely. Starting in BW053, the original Japanese credits and lyrics are shown for both the opening and ending themes.
Eternal Friendship by Cindy V is used for both the opening and the ending for the VTV2 dub of the XY series. For these episodes on POPS Kids, 30 seconds of the song is played over the opening animations of Pokémon Theme (Version XY) and Be a Hero at the very beginning of the episode and another 30 seconds are played over the credits from the English dub at the very end of the episode. However, the first eight episodes maintain the original minute-long opening animation with translated credits. The remaining episodes of the series, including SS035 and episodes from XY094 onward use the opening and ending themes of the English dub.
For the Sun & Moon series, they retained Under The Alolan Sun, using the opening and ending themes of the English dub.
By My Side and Best Friend were used as the ending for Volcanion and the Mechanical Marvel and I Choose You!, respectively.
Pokémon Trading Card Game
Like the video games, there is not currently an official distributor for the Pokémon Trading Card Game in Vietnam. Despite this, some specialty stores import cards from overseas, usually English language cards from the United States.
Pokémon Đặc Biệt
Volume 1 cover (second edition)
The Pokémon Adventures manga is known as Pokémon Đặc Biệt in Vietnam. In the Vietnamese translation, the trademarked romanizations of Japanese names are used for characters, Pokémon and locations; whereas moves are translated into Vietnamese.
In 2003, Pokémon Adventures was licensed by Kim Đồng Publishing House, one of the largest manga publishers in Vietnam. They published translated versions of Volume 1 through Volume 12, until the series was discontinued due to Kim Đồng's Japanese partner cancelling their contract. These volumes were published in a left-to-right format with reversed artwork.
In late 2014, Kim Đồng regained the publishing rights to Pokémon Adventures. The first volume was originally projected for a January 2015 release, but was delayed due to changes requested by Shogakukan and by GoGo Entertainment Co., the company that holds the license to the Pokémon franchise in Vietnam. The new volumes are presented in the original right-to-left reading format. Volume 1 was released on April 6, 2015. Volume 2 was originally scheduled for an April 20 release date, but was delayed due to complaints from readers on vocabulary choices in the translation from the Japanese names to Vietnamese language. It was finally released on August 24, 2015, and subsequent volumes are scheduled to follow every two weeks on Mondays.
Additionally, in the early years of the Pokémon franchise in Vietnam, the Pokémon Pocket Monsters manga was translated and published illegally by Kim Đồng with the name "Pokémon". This translation was published in a left-to-right reading format and used transliterations of Japanese proper names for Pokémon, characters and locations. The series was dropped after Volume 13. Kim Đồng and GoGo Entertainment are attempting to license the series for an official re-release in Vietnam, but have not yet had any success.
A backpack licensed by GoGo Entertainment, featuring Tepig, Pikachu and Snivy
In Vietnam, there are two official Pokémon shops in the country - one in Aeon Mall Bình Dương Canary, which held its opening ceremony on November 1, 2014; and one in Aeon Mall Tân Phú Celadon, which had its opening ceremony on January 11, 2015. The shops are operated in collaboration with GoGo Entertainment (which produces licensed items such as t-shirts and school bags), Kid's Kingdom Trading Co. and AEON Vietnam.
In the early years of Pokémon in Vietnam, most of the merchandise available was counterfeit, although some official items were released in the country. Many books were available in Vietnamese, including the Pokémon anime novelization series, quiz books, colouring and activity books, sticker books, and the like. In recent years, some specialty shops have begun importing official merchandise by Takara Tomy, such as toys and figures.
In December 2014, to promote the upcoming re-release of the Pokémon Adventures manga, Kim Đồng Publishing House released a 2015 calendar featuring images from the Best Wishes series of the Pokémon anime.
Poke-mega.org, namely Pokémon & Mega Man FC Việt Nam, is one of the first and biggest Pokémon fan sites and forums in Vietnam. They also host content and forums related to the Mega Man series.
To promote the upcoming re-release of the Pokémon Adventures manga, Kim Đồng Publishing House held a contest called POKÉMON - TỚ CHỌN CẬU from December 25, 2014 through January 21, 2015. Participants wishing to enter had to email a favorite picture from the Pokémon Adventures series, as well as writing about their favourite characters and memories of the manga. 20 winners will be selected — 10 participants whose photos had the most likes/shares on Kim Đồng's Facebook page and 10 winners chosen by the contest organizers. A list of winners has not yet been announced. The 20 winners received a tour of the factory in Hanoi where the manga is printed. Winners were also to receive a Pokémon figure by Takara Tomy, however, upon the closing of the contest, it was decided that all participants would receive a figure.
Kim Đồng Publishing House hosted an event called Selfie cùng Pikachu, which was held in Ho Chi Minh City on April 5, 2015, the day before Volume 1 was released. Attendees could purchase the volume early and have their photo taken with a Pikachu mascot. Attendees arriving between 8 am and 11 am had the chance to pick up special gift items including Pikachu balloons, paper hats, and stamps. Attendees who emailed their photos with the Pikachu mascot were entered into a special contest on Kim Đồng Publishing House's Facebook page; five winners received a Pokémon figure and a free copy of Volume 2. The photos had to be submitted on April 5—submissions after this date weren't accepted.