We learn near the end of Pokémon: Detective Pikachu that Mewtwo is able to put the minds of people into pokémon, as long as the pokémon are in a crazed state from the R serum.

However, we also learn that Mewtwo on one occation put Harry Goodman inside the body of Pikachu at the scene of the car crash. This Pikachu didn't seem to be dosed with R.

How was this possible?

  • Wasn’t mewtwo dosed with R during the breakout scene that opened the movie? I don’t actually recall, but there was a lot of chaos and it was very possible.
    – Mohair
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 12:11
  • @Mohair Not easy to tell, but Mewtwo's state of mind is a different issue, I think.
    – Arthur
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 12:22
  • 2
    My impression was that they needed an extreme emotional state; crazed from R was one option, but Pikachu was distressed by the idea of Harry dying, which would also qualify. Not an answer, though, because I'd have to watch the movie again to be sure.
    – Allison C
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 15:50
  • 1
    Does it count as spoilers if its in the trailer? I wouldn't think so.
    – Jeffyx
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 20:39
  • 1
    @Jeffyx Or literally the entire focus of the opening scene.
    – Arthur
    Commented May 15, 2019 at 23:22

3 Answers 3


Mewtwo can insert a soul in another body if the recipient allows it.

This can either happen when

  • The Pokémon is willing. That's what happened with Pikachu and Harry. Pikachu is willing to forego his body to save Harry from their pursuers.

  • The Pokémon has no control overhimself. It is what happens when a Pokémon breathes the R gas. They go full animal mode and become a raging beast. Their mind no longer has the power to reject the invading soul.

Otherwise, most Pokémon won't accept this, regardless of their love for their owners.

I don't have access to script yet to add some quotations, but I'll update this answer when I can.

  • I like this idea of "Mewtwo is able as long as the recipient pokémon doesn't resist". It falls in line with much other psychic mumbo-jumbo in fiction.
    – Arthur
    Commented May 18, 2019 at 14:53

I'm not going to look up exactly what Mewtwo said to Pikachu after the car crash, but he says something on the lines of "if you let me do this it will save him". I would like to think, just like a pokemon has the will to break free from a capture, (like in the beginning of the movie) it would have the will to break the boding of another human. The reason they needed to us the R was to make the pokemon more susceptible to Mewtwo's bonding. Also He had to do it on a large scale which would take a lot of effort, the pokemon had to be in a more susceptible state. We also know that R lowers a pokemon's ability to make good decisions and be more reckless.

Pikachu would obviously risk himself to save his partner because they're a team. Mewtwo doesn't need the R to join 1 pokemon and person, but we can all see why it would make it easier.


The difference is Pikachu's honest and sincere want to give his life for his partner. The whole pleading-with-God-scenario of "Take my life to save ::insert loved one here::."

Remember, the only way Howard could put himself into a Pokemon was with R and a neural link. It wasn't until he saw what MewTwo did in the holographic replay that he learned MewTwo could do this without a neural link as long as the Pokemon was susceptible. Also keep in mind that MewTwo didn't agree to do this, he just had the power to do this. The R gets all the other Pokemon so high that they can't say no.

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