My VG Music Picks #50 – Battle! Ghetsis (Pokémon Black & White/Pokémon Black 2 & White 2)

WARNING: The following article contains spoilers for the following:

Pokémon Black & White
Pokémon Black 2 & White 2

Well, this is a first – two VG Music Picks in one! Why is that? Well, since this is technically the 50th one of these I’ve done, I figured I’d do something a little special. Plus, I can’t really write about one of these music tracks without mentioning the other. So, let’s quickly look at the two themes belonging to the main villain of the 5th Generation of Pokémon games.

As I mentioned in my article about the Pokémon games’ villains, Ghetsis managed to leave quite an impact on me despite his limited appearance, and I chalk part of that up to his battle theme.

Unlike most of the music in the series, this final confrontation with the big bad doesn’t have the same kind of energy you’d expect. It’s very slow and filled with pauses, consisting mostly of heavy drumbeats. It creates a foreboding atmosphere and makes Ghetsis seem all the more intimidating. It symbolises how completely in control he is; this is a battle you are not going to win and he will ultimately triumph, which makes your eventual victory all the more satisfying.

And if that wasn’t enough, the music even chants his name like an ominous choir, as if to make sure you remember his name as he crushes you. I don’t know how making music for DS games work but I feel like I should be impressed with how they were able to pull that off.

His theme in the sequels, however, is quite different. Unlike the first one, this one skips the build-up and jumps straight into the chanting. While it still retains all the elements of the first music piece, it moves at a much faster pace with guitars added to the mix, which makes it more enjoyable to listen to in my opinion.

But the best thing about it is that it represents the changes in Ghetsis’ character as well. The original track was almost dignified; it gave him a false sense of nobility. Here, though, that’s all gone. Ghetsis isn’t bothering to hide how malicious he really is anymore. Now the music’s more manic, representing his descent into madness and his overwhelming desire to destroy the player for interfering with his plans.

Ghetsis’ personality was enough to make him one of my favourite villains in the franchise, but these two music tracks only helped accentuate that feeling.

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