It’s been awhile since I had to do a Pokemon that was just designed from the very beginning to be cute. Horsea’s got itself a cute little swirly for a tail, and a big peashooter for a mouth. And then there’s those huge eyes. They’re red, to let you know that even if it’s a sea Pokemon, the salt water hurts its eyes too.
I typed that last sentence as a joke, but I got genuinely curious about that, so I did some good old fashioned fact checking. And, yup, it turns out that Horsea’s eyes are no longer red upon evolution. I don’t think it’s because Horsea is supposed to have red, irritated eyes from being a newborn, but I get the feeling that someone out there is going to take it as a serious statement and make a new theory out of it.
WHAT HAVE I DONE?!
So everyone likes to point out that Horsea is very obviously based on a seahorse, right. And then it can shoot ink. But seahorses can’t shoot ink! So, obviously, another sea animal came into play, that being Squids, or Octopi. Why? Because they shoot ink. Horsea is a seahorse that shoots ink. It all makes sense.
However, consider the following.
What if Horsea’s roots are much more sinister? What if that’s not ink it’s spraying out, but poison. Horrible terrible poison. And now look at that picture. Horsea from the front, with those big spikes coming off of its head. Then it’s got a tendency to shoot black liquid. Are you following me yet? Do you know where I’m going with this?
That’s right. I propose that Horsea is instead based off of a Dilophosaurus. I mean, if we ignore minor things like how the dinosaur lived on land while Horsea lives in the sea, or how their bodies aren’t really similar at all, then they’re pretty much the same thing.
They’ve both got big flashy heads, and they spew black things from their mouth. If you just drape a cloth over Horsea’s head then you’ve basically got a Dilophosaurus’s frill. Now, I’m not saying that Junichi Masuda or Satoshi Tajiri ripped it off, but I am saying this.
Jurassic Park was released in 1993. The first versions of Pokemon were released in Japan in 1996. Horsea’s index number being 92 is a pretty good indicator that it was added fairly late into the game too, further supporting my theory.
And that’s how awful theories get started. You bring up any objectionable points that would disprove the theory yourself, and then brush them off as being unimportant. Then, you load up your viewer with evidence. It doesn’t matter if it’s circumstantial or real, just so long as you can keep listing things to make your supporting argument look big, and complicated.
The more you know.
DID YOU KNOW?
This is another one of those minor things, but Horsea actually used to have two fins, instead of just the single backfin that it has now. It’s very obvious in Horsea’s original art.
The position of them is different too, which makes me wonder if they were gonna be used differently. The single fin on the back nowadays looks more like it’s supposed to serve as a rotor, so Horsea can steer and make quick turns if it needs to. The original design looks more to me like the fins were basically intended to be hand-analogues. If you wanted to shake Horsea’s hand, it would raise a fin and you’d shake it! That’s only an assumption though, so who knows.
However, what makes this a little more interesting than other ancient retcons is that Horsea was actually depicted like this in other works for awhile. Sort of. Even in the game it looks like Horsea has a single fin, but…
In at least one of the manga, Horsea was depicted with that twin-fin design! This picture is from Magical Pokemon Journey, which had a few major changes from other versions of Pokemon. The most notable one is that all Pokemon can speak the same language as humans.
The second most notable? Horsea’s double fins of course!
USING HORSEA IN BATTLE
Little Cup only!
Horsea is not great. That 70 in Defense and Special Attack is pretty decent for a Little Cup Pokemon, but it falls short in every other area and is just all around a sub par Pokemon.
First things first though, don’t even bother with Horsea unless you’re using a Rain team. While Horsea evolutions may be able to make use of the Sniper ability, the best that Horsea itself can do is Swift Swim. With doubled Speed in rain, Horsea can use a STAB boosted Hydro Pump to smash apart a pretty decent number of things that would try to stop it. Ice Beam is always a fantastic option for coverage, and for a third moveslot you’ll probably want Substitute. If you’d prefer to play safe though, Substitute can be swapped out for Rain Dance.
You know, I’m just realizing that it’s been a long time since I’ve written about a Pokemon that has 4 moveslot syndrome. For those unaware, 4 moveslot syndrome is just the fan nickname for a Pokemon that is filled to bursting with good options for attacks, and would be insanely better if it had an extra moveslot availble.
Bringing that up because a lot of things recently have been a strugle to come up with a good fourth move. Horsea is one of them, with Hidden Power pretty much being the only good option. Seriously. The only other move it gets access to that isn’t Water or Ice typed is Flash Cannon, and Steel is a terrible type offensively. Anyway, for Hidden Power you’ll want either Grass, or Ground. Then just add a Life Orb on top for a boost in power.
ARBITRARY SCORESAPPEARANCES: 5/5
Horsea is absolutely adorable. Even its cry is cute.DESIGN: 5/5
Making use of a seahorse’s weird trumpet mouth to shoot ink is a pretty great idea in terms of design. Alternatively, Dilophosauruses man!BATTLE: 2/5
Not great. There’s better Pokemon to consider for your rain team.OVERALL: 4/5
We were sailing along on moonlight bay~