Thanksgiving is a time to give thanks and think about what we’re grateful for. And gaming fans everywhere are thankful this year for one very specific thing: Kadabra is back on Pokemon trading cards.
The psychic character’s 20-year absence from Pokemon cards is due to both his appearance and his Japanese name. Famed illusionist Uri Geller, who is said to bend spoons with his mind, sued Nintendo in 2000 for using his likeness and moniker without his initial permission. Kadabra’s Japanese name is “Yungera,” and he, like Geller, wields a spoon, prompting Geller to claim the character was an unauthorized appropriation of his identity.
Geller requested Kadabra not to be printed on Pokemon cards. The company agreed to his request and, as a result, for over 20 years, the character has not existed on trading cards.
According to “The Gamer,” thanks to the many emails he’s received over the years from fans asking for the character to come back, Geller has made the decision to let Nintendo print the character on cards again. He told The Gamer that “due to the tremendous volume of emails I am still getting begging me to allow Nintendo to bring back Kadabra/Yungeller, I sent […] a letter to the chairman of Nintendo giving them permission to relaunch the Uri Geller Kadabra/Yungeller worldwide.”
Kadabra originally appeared in Pokemon’s first official card game set. It joined the evolution line of Abra and Alakazam, but because of the character’s absence, Abra has been able to skip over Kadabra and evolve directly into Alakazam. Fans have gotten used to workarounds for this particular evolution line, but that’s all about to change — because Geller has finally had a change of heart.
It’s about time something went right in 2020, and the fact that it’s restoring order to Pokemon trading cards somehow makes the most sense.