#114 Tangela

So many jokes, so little time.

So many jokes, so little time.

Tangela is the only fully evolved mono-Grass typed Pokemon in Generation 1. Every other Grass Pokemon aside from Exeggutor was dual typed Poison back then, so Tangela was a good way to get some nice Grass coverage while not leaving yourself open to Psychic attacks.

Of course, not being Poison meant that Tangela was vulnerable to Toxic. Which is kinda bad, since Tangela is made to be a pretty solid defensive Pokemon. Also Psychic attacks were considered Special in Gen 1, and Tangela has an extremely weak Special Defense in exchange for that good regular Defense.

Conclusion: They really messed up while making Tangela.

At least you'll never be THAT big of a disaster

At least you’ll never be THAT big of a disaster

Fun fact, several months back someone I know was holding a tournament where you were only allowed to use awful, weak Pokemon. Tangela fit within the requirements for this, and I actually had a pretty decent amount of success in the practice matches. Then the official thing never wound up happening so I never got to see if my Tangela would have made an excellent competitor or not. I even had the best nickname for it. Kirby. Because it looks like an enemy straight out of a Kirby game. Or like what Kirby would look like if it gained a Tentacle power.

Kirby was awesome.

OOGA BOOGA BOOGA

OOGA BOOGA BOOGA

You know what bothers me? When extremely easy references in the Pokedex never come to fruition on the actual Pokemon. Multiple entries reference Tangela’s vines as being ticklish, and unnerving to its opponent. So they made sure that Tangela can learn the move Tickle, but then they don’t give it Unnerve as an ability.

If you haven’t noticed yet, I’m really trying to fill time and ignore the obvious thing staring right at me. The joke I don’t want to make because this is a PG blog. I keep things clean here ya’ll. I don’t stoop to dumb jokes about unclean things.

So instead have a Tangela leading some Exeggcute aroud

So instead have a Tangela leading some Exeggcute around

I’m not going to bring it up. I mean, yes, I would find it strange if a Lass in Pokemon had only a Tangela in her party, but it would be because of Tangela’s limited usefulness. My mind wouldn’t be going to impure thoughts. I wouldn’t be worried about that schoolgirl’s innocence, or the assumed lack thereof.

Instead I’d be wondering why Tangela is blue! R-Right! Tangela is a Grass typed Pokemon. It’s based around vines and seaweed. And yet it’s blue? Why is that? I don’t know, but I’m glad that GameFreak realized their mistake and immediately made Shiny Tangela green to make up for their horrible mistake.

Just add some butter for an easy meal!

Just add some butter for an easy meal!

You know what else Tangela reminds me of? Spaghetti? I kinda wanna just jab a fork right into Tangela’s body, twirl it up, and eat it whole, and alive. I have to wonder how good it tastes, you know? I mean I’m sure it’s atrocious, but that could probably be countered with some cayenne pepper and extra time boiling.

You know what Tangela doesn’t remind me of? TENTACLE P-

DID YOU KNOW?

Tangela is one of the few still unsolved mysteries about Pokemon. Much like Diglett, nobody quite knows what is hidden underneath all of Tangela’s vines. I don’t understand why, because Pokedex entries say that Tangela’s vines snap easily, and while a day to grow back might be extremely quick it’s also plenty of time to tear the vines away and look at what’s underneath.

However, much like Diglett, I like this remaining a mystery. It’s way too late to try and surprise everyone by revealing it at this point, and really, we pretty much know what’s inside. It’s a small kirby-esque thing with a black face and big eyes. I mean, probably.

Look, lemme give you an example.

I love Kirby. Pretty sure I haven't said that before.

I love Kirby. Pretty sure I haven’t said that before.

See that masked guy there? That’s Meta Knight in Meta Knight’s Revenge from Kirby Super Star. Like many people, I’m sure we all wondered what was beneath Meta Knight’s mask. Was it a bird face? Maybe he was like Kirby but he had like, a beard, and a scar, and an eyepatch! Oh man! I can’t wait to find out what’s underneath!

Luckily, when you defeat Meta Knight, his mask cracks, and falls off. Allowing you to see his face for a brief moment.

Oh, hi. I'm pretty much just you, except blue.

Oh, hi. I’m pretty much just you, except blue.

And then we found out that there was nothing special underneath. Meta Knight was, and to this day, still is just a palette swapped Kirby underneath the mask.

We don’t know what’s underneath Tangela’s vines, and we probably never will. Don’t worry about it though. Just assume it’s a black blob with feet and you won’t be disappointed.

USING TANGELA IN BATTLE

stats via pokemondb

stats via pokemondb

Eviolite Tangela. Give it Regenerator as an ability. This is the strat I used to murder my companions at Pokemon for the mini tournament with a 450 BST limit.

Anyway, Tangela’s got a fantastic 115 base Defense stat, and a sad 40 Special Defense. Eviolite helps to patch both of those up, and the Grass type is finally somewhat half decent as a defensive type thanks to built in immunity to spore and powder based attacks. Regenerator is a fantastic ability that will recover 33% of your HP on a switch out, so you should be basically using hit and run tactics to keep your Tangela healthy. The Eviolite will serve you well in tanking incoming attacks while you’re doing all that switching,

As for moves, Giga Drain, Toxic, and Leech Seed are pretty much required. If you really want you can sub Leech Seed out for Synthesis in the interest of keeping yourself alive, but Regenerator will usually suffice there. Leaf Storm is another good option over Giga Drain, since the -2 to Special Attack means little when you plan on leaving shortly after using the move.

For a final move? Knock Off is always useful for utility, but you should not expect to do much damage off of that 55 Attack stat. Sleep Powder is also useful if you don’t want to run Toxic, and Hidden Power Ice is pretty much the only other option worth considering.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 1/5
I don’t want this thing anywhere near me. It’s unnerving.

DESIGN: 3/5
Tangela’s original name was actually Meduza. This seems to imply that they were going for a whole gorgon head motif, but it doesn’t really look like that to me. So I don’t know. I like the mystery behind it though.

BATTLE: 2/5
Eviolite is hilarious on defensive Pokemon. Tangela’s just not great though.

I DON’T GET: THE FIRST/SECTION
Good. Don’t look into it. Keep your innocence, children. Cherish it.

OVERALL: 2/5

And take your creepy tickling fantasies with you!

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#113 Chansey

Sup dawg, we put an egg inside yo eggg

Sup dawg, we put an egg inside yo egg

Chansey is pink and round. She’s shaped like an egg. She’s also got a pouch on its front that also has an egg. She’s weak on the offensive, but strong on the defensive. She’s got a permanent smiled etched into her face.

That’s all there is to say about Chansey.

This is more or less Chansey's job in game.

This is more or less Chansey’s job in game.

For the games at least. I was really worried about writing this because I was like man, what is there to really say about Chansey? Then, much to my surprise, I discover that the anime has an extremely different view of Chansey. A cartoonish, completely inaccurate view.

I normally save talk of stats for the last section of a review, but I’m going to bring this up now. Chansey has the absolute lowest Attack stat of all. 721 Pokemon and Chansey is the absolute lowest, with 5. For reference, the weakest Pokemon in terms of stats overall is Sunkern, which still manages to have a 30 in every stat.

Say that to my face not online and see what happens.

Say that to my face not online and see what happens.

The anime, however, seems to make Chansey out to be some kind of world-ending monster. Beneath that big, goofy smile is the mind of a killer. Chansey will end your life in a heartbeat and smile while doing it.

I have to actively remind myself that Chansey is phenomenally weak in game. Fair warning, the images in this article may disturb you.

Tonight... you.

Tonight… you.

What makes this more disturbing is that Chansey is also frequently associated with Pokemon Centers and Nurse Joy in the anime. It’d be like finding out that all the hospitals in your town are secretly run by the mafia. The scary mafia. The kind that make a living murdering the living hell out of people, and not running casinos or something.

I don’t like it.

I DON'T EVEN CARE THAT THIS IS TECHNICALLY NOT VERY EFFECTIVE

SINCE THIS IS TECHNICALLY NOT VERY EFFECTIVE I’LL HAVE TO HIT YOU TWICE AS MANY TIMES

You know what else is awful? Chansey’s eggs. See, everyone likes to laugh and say that Chansey is a cannibal because the move Softboiled very strongly implies that Chansey eats its own eggs. But Softboiled isn’t the only egg-based move that Chansey uses. It also gets access to Egg Bomb, which is pretty much exactly what it sounds like.

Platinum’s Pokedex confirms that Chansey lays these eggs themselves, but that they contain no Pokemon. That’s all well and good, but now I have to wonder just how quickly a Chansey can lay an egg. It gets 10 PP for Softboiled, so that implies it can produce 10 in a relatively quick period of time. That 10 can be raised to 16 PP though, thanks to PP Ups. On the other hand, Egg Bomb has another 10 PP that can also be raised to 16 thanks to the power of PP Up.

Chansey can produce, at minimum, 32 eggs in a single battle without the need for medicine. And that’s why I can only assume that any Exeggcute that get separated from their group wind up in a Chansey’s grasp.

This may look cute but the undertones are sinister.

This may look cute but the undertones are sinister.

DID YOU KNOW?

First things first. In Japan, Chansey’s name is Lucky. That makes everything else I’m about to mention very strange. At least I think it’s strange. Or at least very lazy.

The nurse is ready to see you now! =D

The nurse is ready to see you now! =D

So, aside from Arceus, who has that whole plate gimmick going on, Chansey’s line actually has the highest number of items related to it! For starters we have the Lucky Punch, an item so phenomenally useless I’m not even going to bother explaining what it does (Except I will it raises Chansey’s crit chance by 2 stages which is amazing if not for the fact that Chansey is absolutely atrocious as an attacker). Next up is the Luck Incense, which is how you hatch Happiny out of eggs, instead of Chansey. Then there’s the Oval Stone, which your freshly hatched Happiny needs to evolve into Chansey. And finally we have the most actually useful of these items, the Lucky Egg, which will raise your exp gained by 50%.

Notice how 3 of those have Luck in them. I don’t know if Japan is just really uncreative, or if they really like the name Lucky.

Have a cute gif for once.

Have a cute gif for once.

USING CHANSEY IN BATTLE

stats via pokemondb

stats via pokemondb

Wow. Those stats. It’s very very obvious what role Chansey is meant to play in battle. This is also the first time in ages that I’ll be talking about a Pokemon that is actually insanely strong in battle.

Why’s that? Eviolite. Pump all your EV’s into both Defense stats, and give Chansey Eviolite. Congratulations, you now have a Pokemon so insanely bulky that other Pokemon weep when they try to destroy it. Be careful of Knock Off though!

Anyway, that’s really all there is to it. No matter what you run your Chansey will probably be an effective teammate. You’ve got two main ways to plan this out though. You can either be a strong defensive unit, or support the rest of your team. Either way, Toxic is going to be your main way to deal damage in a timely manner. Or Seismic Toss, in case of Taunting. Or both! Softboiled should be used if it’s going to be standalone, but Wish is better if it’s going to support. Natural Cure is 100% the ability you should go with, so that Chansey can’t be defeated via Toxic unless it’s the last Pokemon on your team. Stealth Rock and Heal Bell are also excellent choices for Chansey to support your team.

Just, again, watch out for Knock Off users. With Eviolite the amount of bulk Chansey has on both ends is absolutely fantastic, but if it loses that item it immediately becomes extremely susceptible to Physical Attacks.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 4/5
Cute as a button.

DESIGN: 2/5
What even is this? An egg with a tail?

BATTLE: 5/5
I hate fighting Chansey. I hate it because good players can keep it around and away from Knock Off users for a looooooong time.

CHANSEY IS CONFIRMED: TO LAY/EGGS?
Yes, actually. The eggs Chansey uses in battle appear to be unique from regular Pokemon eggs, though. Chansey’s Platinum Pokedex entry confirms that the eggs are laid by Chansey herself though.

OVERALL: 3.6/5

My defenses are impregnable. My style is impetuous.

#112 Rhydon

What if Rhyhorn… stood up?!

Rhyhorn is one baaaad mother trucker. Take Nidoking, make him a much more intimidating gray , add two feet to his height, and add in the ability for him to be female. Now you’ve got yourself a Rhydon!

Except, there’s one minor detail I forgot. That big scary poison horn that Nidoking proudly wields? Swap it out for an industrial drill with Real Spinning Action!™

Then toss it at someone like a football!

Then toss it at someone like a football!

Rhydon always annoyed the heck out of me as a kid. Like, I would see Rhydon and be like, “Holy crap, that thing looks awesome!” and want to use it. Then I’d try to find one and couldn’t. Never ever ever. It’s not that Rhyhorn are super ultra rare or anything, it’s just that you don’t get them until the Safari Zone in Fuchsia City.

Now, I know some people like to play Pokemon by changing their teams the entire time through and acquiring a large team of Pokemon both stored and in their party at all times. If you played like that, then more power to you. I’m not one of those people though. I liked to collect my entire well balanced team relatively early in the game, and make use of those the entire time. I work with a small, core group, and Fuchsia City is way too late to keep a slot open, even if it meant never using Rhydon.

If I'd known it could surf at the time I may have changed my mind.

If I’d known it could surf at the time I may have changed my mind.

After writing that last bit I realized that I never used a Rhydon. So I got to hypothesizing, has Rhyhorn ever been available at a reasonable point in any of the games? I already mentioned Gen 1’s Fuchsia City. In Gen 2, Rhyhorn didn’t show up until Victory Road. In Gen 3? Rhyhorn was again limited to the Safari Zone, which, in Hoenn, was a pretty good chunk into the game. Once again, in Gen 5, Rhyhorn was restricted to a post game area. Gen 4 was a half-exception. While Rhyhorn was limited to a post-game area in Diamond and Pearl, it was made available much earlier, on Route 214 for Platinum. And finally, in Gen 6, they relented and made Rhyhorn available in the relatively early Glittering Cave.

The point I’m trying to make is that the 500th Geodude you encounter before finding a Rhyhorn starts to look really sweet if you want some good old fashioned Rock and Ground coverage.

All the sparkles in the world can't change that.

All the sparkles in the world can’t change that.

All of this writing about Rhyhorn makes me want to kinda catch one right now actually. I’ve never had the chance to level one up, and I’ve always found the gimmick of an Eviolite Rhydon to be hilarious. Maybe I will some day. Maybe I will for the inevitable Pokemon Z, or Pokemon X2 / Y2 that comes out near the end of this year.

I’ll make sure it’s male, so I can use the perfect nickname of Mr. Driller without pulling on my collar every time someone points out that the gender and use of Mr. are technically incorrect.

MAYBE WE WON'T EVEN GO ON AN ADVENTURE

MAYBE WE WON’T EVEN GO ON AN ADVENTURE

DID YOU KNOW?

A long time ago, while writing about Venonat, I mentioned this little thing called Index Numbers. They’re basically a sort of way to determine via the games internal data what order Pokemon were added to the game and in which order. I used it to point out that the entire Caterpie line was added together, separate of Venonat and Venomoth. This time though, the Index Numbers will prove something much more trivia-based.

Rhydon was the very first Pokemon ever conceived.

Before Pokemon, there was Capsule Monsters.

Before Pokemon, there was Capsule Monsters.

That art right there is from an ancient manga-pitch thing for what would eventually become Pokemon. It started off as Capsule Monsters, and that thing shown a lot is an early version of the very first Pokemon, Rhydon. Rhydon also has the coveted index number of 001. But, as you can probably tell, it goes a bit farther than that.

See that sketch on the top left of that image? It’s basically illustrating how Capsule Monsters were supposed to work. Does that chibi Rhydon look familiar to you at all? Cause it should.

DID I JUST BLOW YOUR MIND?

DID I JUST BLOW YOUR MIND?

Given the GameBoy’s processing and memory limitations at the time, it couldn’t exactly have a cute little tiny icon of every Pokemon like we enjoy today. So, instead, there was a small handful of cute little icons that represented the type of a Pokemon basically. That substitute plush is based off of the most common of these figures, which, again, is based off of a chibi Rhydon.

Tada! What. Is that too small? Maybe I should just make it a little bit bigger and…

IT'S MIND-BOGGLIN' YEAH

IT’S MIND-BOGGLIN’ YEAH

The “Generic Pokemon” used so frequently in statues in some of the games is also based on that same depiction of the first Pokemon. Rhydon is everywhere if you know what to look for.

USING RHYDON IN BATTLE

stats via pokemondb

Rhydon, just like Rhyhorn, is extremely top heavy. I mentioned it awhile back but, if you give a Rhydon Eviolite, it is actually the bulkiest unboosted Pokemon in the entire game. Unfortunately that still doesn’t mean too much when it’s just so slow and still has that awful Special Defense stat.

So, you’ll want to pick a role. You can either be a tank, in which case you’ll want to set up Stealth Rocks, and carry Roar to phase out enemies. After that, two STAB moves will complete the set, with Earthquake and Stone Edge or Rock Blast being the best option. Alternatively, you can run Swords Dance, and smash things around with a boosted Earthquake and Stone Edge. For a fourth moveslot you can either try to correct Rhydon’s speed problems with Rock Polish, or you can forego that entirely for Megahorn and have additional coverage.

If you’re running a Defensive Rhydon you’ll want to put all of your EV’s into Special Defense and HP to make a nice, bulky Rhydon, but if you’re running Offensive you should be putting all of your EV’s into Attack and Speed. Ability again doesn’t matter, because none of the recoil moves Rhydon gets access to are particularly good.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 5/5
Rhydon is always cool. Except when

DESIGN: 4/5
Take Rhyhorn, let it stand up, and give it a spinning drill horn. It’s cool and a great evolution, but still a little lazy.

BATTLE: 2/5
Not useless, but not really worth using either.

HOW DOES: THAT HORN/MOVE?
I’ve wondered this myself for a long time. In most 3D games Rhydon’s horn is depicted as being able to spin, which makes sense because it’s a drill. But, I mean, Rhydon is a natural thing. So how does it spin? No amount of dumb theories can ever answer that!

OVERALL: 3.6/5
112 112f
Female Rhydon have a smaller horn!

 

#111 Rhyhorn

The most literal rock monster

Look at this. This thing is amazing. Give it a lick. Mm, it tastes just like raisins.

Rhyhorn is basically a rhinoceros made out of plates of rock instead of, you know, leathery flesh. It’s got narrow red eyes, and a small stubby horn. The kind of horn that a real rhino would look at and laugh. If there’s a rhinos-only shower anywhere you can bet your face that Rhyhorn is the one that just likes to hang back and wait ’til everyone else is done before going in.

Meanwhile Rambi struts around like he owns the place!

Meanwhile Rambi struts around like he owns the place!

It’s okay Rhyhorn. Okay because despite all appearances Rhyhorn is, in fact, the first stage of a three stage Pokemon. That means that this guy is supposed to be considered in the same tier as tiny, cute Pokemon like Igglybuff and Pichu. And that is where Rhyhorn’s stubby horn becomes a force to be reckoned with.

Know why else it’s okay? Call it cliche, but it’s true. The size of the horn doesn’t matter, it’s how you use it. And although Rhyhorn isn’t the most effective Pokemon out there, it’s certainly able to pack a punch in the right circumstances.

WHAT THE HECK IS A 4X WEAKNESS?!

All innuendo aside, Rhyhorn has always seemed like the kind of thing that you absolutely do not want to mess with. It’s a living monster made out of rocks, and it’s got a horn. It’s probably not going to break apart easily, and, according to the Pokedex, it’s got an extremely one-track mind. When Rhyhorn sees a target that it determines is worth charging towards, it does so. And then, it immediately forgets why it started to run, and decides it’ll just keep doing so until it crashes into something.

I imagine this leads to many Rhyhorn deaths, but who knows. Maybe even falling off a cliff wouldn’t be enough to break that rock plating and damage it. I’d post that famous gif of lemmings jumping to their deaths here but it turns out that that whole thing was faked. Not the lemmings falling to their deaths, no. That was real. The reason that they were doing it was fake, and a bunch of documentary filmmakers decided that lemmings were boring and letting them jump to their deaths would be a good way to add some interesting stuff to their documentary.

People were messed up back then.

E-Even Rhyhorn is afraid!

E-Even Rhyhorn is afraid!

The more I look at Rhyhorn the more I think it really wouldn’t be all that dangerous. First things first is the height. Despite all appearances, Rhyhorn stands at a diminutive 3′ 03”. If ever there was a monster that could use a couple feet in height it was Rhyhorn. But not Nidoking. Nidoking is too hilarious being that tiny to give up the joke.

Secondly, those legs. I don’t know a lot about anatomy, physiology, or the body’s more intricate processes. But, I can tell you this much. Legs that are that stubby and unable to bend will not be moving very fast at all. A charging Rhyhorn would likely look similar to a jogging Rhyhorn, and would only be dangerous if its target is a dying old person trapped in an iron lung that has a giant hole in the side so it’s vulnerable to that short horn.

Rhyhorn isn’t scary, is what I’m saying.

DID YOU KNOW?

Generation 6 introduced something new to the world of Rhydon. Something dumb. Something phenomenally stupid. It’s called Rhyhorn racing.

This is from the anime, but it's in the game too.

This is from the anime, but it’s in the game too.

In Pokemon X and Y, your “mother” is a former amazing Rhyhorn racer. I say “mother” because I played through Pokemon Y with tan skin, and my mother clearly did not have the same skin color. Now I’m not saying I was adopted, but I am saying that my lack of a father is probably racist if I wasn’t adopted.

Anyway, I suppose that’s all really. People ride around on Rhyhorn in a track. I can not possibly fathom how uncomfortable that would be, given Rhyhorn’s incredible hardness. And again, remind yourself, Rhyhorn is three feet tall with an anatomy that does not lend itself well to racing.

Conclusion: Rhyhorn racing is dumb, but I’m glad it exists because otherwise I’d have nothing to talk about here. Except how the Rhyhorn line is the only Pokemon that has both Rock and Ground types, but has the Rock being secondary while Ground is the primary.

USING RHYHORN IN BATTLE
Little Cup only!

stats via pokemondb

Rhyhorn is about as top heavy as you can get when it comes to stats. It 80 HP and 95 Defense makes it a fantastically potent tank when given Eviolite. Unfortunately, that pitiful 30 Special Defense and 25 Speed leaves it vulnerable to Special Attackers. Solution? Get Rhyhorn out of there when there’s a Special Attacker involved, even if it can only hit neutral.

Anyway, to use Rhyhorn, you’ll just want to play to its strengths only, and not attempt to salvage those bottom stats. Pump its HP, Defense, and Attack EV’s, while giving it Earthquake and Rock Blast as a dual STAB. Stealth Rock is great to set up with Rhyhorn as well, because it’s got enough bulk to take just about any Physical attack and set the rocks up without issue. After that your best options are to add another coverage move, with Aqua Tail or Megahorn being the best choices.

As for an ability? Fun fact, they’re all useless. Being Ground type means Rhyhorn is immune to Electric attacks already. Reckless and Rock Head are two decent abilities, but they both revolve around bettering recoil moves, and Rhyhorn won’t learn any of those until it evolves.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 4/5
A nice, fat, rhino. With a cute stubby horn.

DESIGN: 4/5
I really like Rhyhorn’s design. Rhinos already look like they’re plated in armor, and Rhyhorn just removes the leathery look in favor of fearsome rock plating.

BATTLE: 4/5
Very good. Fantastic bulk, and Eviolite actually helps its Special Defense too. I mean, not enough to be useful, but it could survive something!

WHY DO YOU CARE: ABOUT POKEMON/HEIGHTS?
Because Pokemon heights and weights are never not hilarious. Fully grown adults riding a three foot Rhyhorn is something you have to be fully cognizant of to appreciate.

OVERALL: 4/5
111 111f
Female Rhyhorn actually have smaller horns than the males!

 

#110 Weezing

*coughing noises*

And there you have it. This is what happens when something’s sole redeeming feature is ruined. Koffing at least had a great face that you could photoshop onto other things for hilarity. You could do the same with Weezing, but it would just make the target look awful. And ugly.

Weezing is just kind of depressing, really. As ugly as Koffing’s body was it really looked like it was just enjoying life. When it evolves it looks like it’s silently begging for you to show it mercy and end its life.

THIS HAPPENS EVERY TIME I OPEN MY MOUTH JUST KILL ME

THIS HAPPENS EVERY TIME I OPEN MY MOUTH JUST KILL ME ;_;

I’m like 99% positive I’ve brought this up every time I have to write about one of these “it gets another head” evolutions, but I can’t help but wonder how that physiology works. Unlike Dodrio or Dugtrio, one of Weezing’s heads is very obviously the dominant one. It’s much bigger than the other, it has more teeth, and is also generally portrayed as the head that speaks when it’s saying its name.

That other head? It’s just kinda hangin’ around. Checkin’ stuff out.

And being annoyed with its roommate.

And being annoyed with its roommate.

Something I found very interesting was that, according to the Pokedex, the dominant Weezing head can actually change! That’s right! One head is not permanently designated to tininess! Even though Weezing looks like a horrible craggy rock volcano monster it’s actually got the ability to inflate and deflate itself. Like a balloon. A hard, rocky balloon that doesn’t lose any of its shape depending on whether or not it’s inflated or deflated.

I don’t think the people who wrote this Pokedex entry were familiar with how balloons work. Or, well, anything that can inflate really. You see, after something gets inflated it can’t really return to its proper uninflated form perfectly. Try it at home yourself! If someone asks why, tell them a scientist told you to.

Although if you make a face like this pretend you've never heard of me and call an ambulance

Although if you make a face like this pretend you’ve never heard of me and call an ambulance

I’m not an expert on balloons though, so, who knows. Maybe there are special kinds of materials that will return to their original shape after being inflated? Maybe there’s a kind of rock that is super hard, resistant to breakage, but will also inflate and deflated if you just pump some air into it.

Have I ever mentioned that Pokemon is silly?

I fail to find any levity in this

I’m a giant cobra that was slathered in makeup and I find no levity in this situation

Am I done talking about Weezing yet? No? How much more space do I need to fill? 70 words? Well, that’s not so bad I suppose. At least I found that cool info about Weezing being able to switch heads via inflation. And not the creepy, fetish kind of inflation either. The entirely safe for work kind. Have you ever seen a clown make an animal balloon? Congratulations, now you know how Weezing works.

4444

I HIT 500 I’M DONE ONTO THE NEXT SECTION

DID YOU KNOW?

I couldn’t find much about Weezing really, so I’m going to go with a theory. But not an awful theory, because I make no claim that what follows is true in any way. It’s merely an interesting observation that you can take as a possible source for inspiration, but not confirmed fact.

So, there’s a minor theory going aroud based on Weezing’s origins. People believe that Weezing may be based on cancer. Or, more specifically, cancer cells.

Have a photo of some prostate cancer. I don't know if that means this is NSFW

Have a photo of some prostate cancer. I don’t know if that means this is NSFW

The first and most obvious supporting detail is appearance. The way that cancer cells replicate and spread apart is very much reminiscent of Weezing’s horrific look. Then there’s Weezing’s name, and what it represents. It speaks in a strained, raspy tone, and it’s named after the act of wheezing. And hey, isn’t there something that can be used to connect all these dots together?

WELL?! CAN YOU?!

WELL?! CAN YOU?!

That’s right! People believe that Weezing is totally an anti-smoking message! Weezing spews putrid gas, can barely breathe, and visually resembles cancer, all of which are known effects from smoking! It’s all pretty interesting stuff, and is one of the few hidden messages Pokemon may contain that I actually enjoy.

But hey, that’s just a theory. A STOLEN JOKE theory! Thanks for reading.

I'll close with this image of Weezing made with the cancer theory in mind. It's by the talented Bohnny John, and you can view his website by clicking the image!

I’ll close with this image of Weezing made with the cancer theory in mind. It’s by the talented Bohnny John, and you can view his website by clicking the image!

USING WEEZING IN BATTLE

Still givin us the middle finger

Still givin’ us the finger

Weezing is really not great. I mean, that 120 Defense is amazing, but it’s ruined by the low HP and Special Defense.

Basically, you’re going to run Weezing pretty much the same way you do Koffing. Will-O-Wisp is an absolute must, as is Pain Split to keep yourself healthy and alive. Swap out the Eviolite for some Black Sludge, and pump all your EV’s into HP and Defense.

That’ll leave you with two open move slots! From there you can go offensive, in which case you’ll want Sludge Bomb + Flamethrower for a solid STAB + coverage move. If you want to use Weezing as a wall, then Toxic Spikes is a good option to auto poison and attempt to outlast anything that switches into it. Protect is good for stalling out an extra turn and healing some more if necessary. You’ll definitely still want at least Sludge Bomb on a defensive Weezing because its low Speed makes it vulnerable to Taunt.

Just don’t expect to do much when Weezing attacks. It should be used primarily for Defense, and the attacks should be there primarily to sort of kick an enemy while they’re down, so to speak. Status effects are your friend, and stalling will keep you alive.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 1/5
GET IT AWAY.

DESIGN: 3/5
As much as I want the cancer thing to be real, there’s no conclusive proof of it. Regardless, it does still look like a horribly diseased monstrosity, and I feel like that works as a Koffing evolution.

BATTLE: 3/5
Solid bulk, really. Just easily destroyed by Special Attackers.

REALLY?: AN ANTI-SMOKING/PSA?
You know it. We do it all here. Check back next year for the obligatory after school special. How will little Jimmy’s parents react when they discover he’s been hanging out with the nefarious Team Aqua? Tune in and find out.

OVERALL: 2.3/5

Just not havin’ a good day.

#109 Koffing

:D

:D

I hate how simultaneously disgusting and adorable Koffing is. It’s got an ultra goofy grin, and is mostly depicted looking up instead of straight ahead, like there’s something interesting going on in the sky. It’s adorable!

But then there’s the rest of it. Koffing is some kind of creepy purple craggy cratered sphere that emits poisonous gas. If I knew of a term that was just the opposite of “butterface” then I would be applying it to Koffing.

I'm 99% sure I've seen Jesse make this exact face.

I’m 99% sure I’ve seen Jesse make this exact face.

I feel like I mentioned it somewhere before but a cursory glance through past blog entries doesn’t seem to bring up me ever bringing Koffing outside of a passing mention in Grimer. Back then I mentioned that Grimer, Koffing, and Trubbish seemed to represent various kinds of pollution. Koffing and its evolution represent air pollution, but I find it unusual that the most likely source of inspiration for Koffing’s appearance is a mine. An underwater mine that you would find underwater, and not a land mine, or an air mine.

This is a picture of what I'm talking about.

This is a picture of what I’m talking about

The only explanation I can think of for this is that Koffing is eerily similar to an inorganic naval mine on paper. They’re both round, with a bunch of “spikes” covering their bodies. They both float, although one does so in mid-air while the other simply does it underwater. And, most importantly, they both explode in spectacular fashion.

OH NO!

OH NO!

First off, I’ve really been loving these obscure Bandai cards. They’ve been a huge help for finding hilarious ancient art of Pokemon.

Secondly, Jesus H. Christ. Look at that! It’s so creepy! This image seems to suggest that Koffing is completely hollow! And look at its face! Did this poor Koffing explode so suddenly and violently that it didn’t even get to react to what was going on? Or is this how they show they’re in pain? Are Koffing always in pain and we’ve just thought they had goofy smiles?

Let's stop thinking about that and shift gears!

Let’s stop thinking about that and shift gears!

There’s been at least two notable Koffing in the history of Pokemon ever, which is more than most Pokemon would ever get. Are there even two notable Pikachu I guess you could count Ash and Red as separate entities if you want to say that they both have a Pikachu worth remembering. After that…? I’ve got nothin’.

But Jessie, from the anime, had a Koffing. I’m sure everyone was aware of this because we were all children at some point, and maybe some of you still are. If you’re reading this and you’re still a child, please stop watching the Pokemon anime. It’s mega turbo garbage.

Anyway, Team Rocket’s always been comic relief even though they were technically villains, so James’s Koffing was known for making everyone like a purple, noxious land mine likable. It helped Jessie, James, and Meowth through all kinds of fights, even if it had to dress up in a ridiculous outfit to do so.

Ekans looks embarrassed but Koffing is loving it.

Ekans looks embarrassed but Koffing is loving it.

The other notable Koffing? Well, you can read all about it because it related to the next section starting…

now!

DID YOU KNOW?

Roxie!

LOOK AT ALL THEM PIXELS IN MAXIMUM RESOLUTION

So, Roxie. Roxie is a gym leader in Pokemon Black and White 2 only. She runs a fairly early game Poison-typed Gym. She’s of a questionable age because, well, she looks like a child, but is also a rock star? That’s not to say that children can’t be rock stars (I love me some Babymetal) but it just makes her look like she’s a weird, nebulous age.

Anyway, none of that’s important. What is important is that, like James, she had a Koffing. Unlike James, her Koffing was her signature Pokemon. It was also super badass in the anime.

And incredibly fast for some strange reason.

And incredibly fast for some strange reason.

Anyway, the whole reason for the DID YOU KNOW-ness of Roxie’s Koffing comes from her gym. When you get there she’s performing a show, and she spells out Pokemon in a catchy tune.

Well, as nice as that song is, it’s exclusive to the English versions of the game! If you play the game in Japanese, Roxie (Or Homika, since that’s her Japanese name) spells, “D-O-G-A-R-S” instead of “P-O-K-E-M-ON”.

I’m sure I don’t have to spell it out at this point, but I will anyway. Koffing’s name in Japanese is, sure enough, Dogars! So it’s not just her signature Pokemon in Japan, it’s what she sings about when you get to the concert! Neat!

Also her Koffing is adorably expressive in the anime.

Also her Koffing is adorably expressive in the anime.

USING KOFFING IN BATTLE
Little Cup only!

stats via pokemondb

stats via pokemondb

I know I’ve made this exact same observation before but I can’t remember on which Pokemon so I’ll just repeat myself here.

Koffing’s stats look like it’s giving you the finger.

That out of the way, Koffing has a fantastic Defense stat of 95, which, when coupled with Eviolite, can make for quite a formidable physical wall. Access to the fantastic ability Levitate only increases Koffing’s usefulness, as it loses itself a weakness unless its opponent is packing both a Ground move and Mold Breaker.

And even then? Koffing gets access to Will-O-Wisp, meaning it’s not likely to be in very much danger for long.WoW is an absolute must on a Koffing, while Pain Split is the closest thing it has available for recovery. Then you’ll need to pick the STAB you want to use. On the obvious side there’s Sludge Bomb, the powerful 90 BP Special Attack. However, because Koffing is defensive, another option to consider is Clear Smog, which is much weaker at only 50 BP, but has the added benefit of removing any buffs your opponent may be trying to build up for sweeping purposes.

Either way, after that you can either run a second attack, or another supporting move. If you want another attack, then you’ll need something that can hit Steel types, because they are completely immune to Poison attacks. Fire Blast is generally considered the best option, but if you’re having trouble with Water types Koffing also gets access to Thunderbolt. There’s also always Shadow Ball, which Steel no longer resists in Gen 6 so it can be a nice neutral attack for anything immune to Sludge Bomb. Destiny Bond is your best option for another support move, to try and take down whatever is about to smash your face in.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 3/5
Part cutesy face, part awful body. Koffing evens out in the end.

DESIGN: 3/5
An underwater mine above water. And it’s still explosive. I don’t know what they were thinking, but it’s far from the worst.

BATTLE: 3/5
Despite all that praise Koffing is still rather middling because it can’t do much against Special Attacks, and its stronger STAB option can Poison, removing the advantage that burning your opponent will bring.

WHY IS: ROXIE’S BACKUP/SINGER SO BORED
This has honestly been bother me forever too. I thought it was just awful English voice acting at first, but he sounds just as dull and monotone in Japanese, and even kind of sounds like the same guy?

OVERALL: 3/5

This animation is just straight up bizarre.

#108 Lickitung

How lewd!

You know what I like about Lickitung?

Nothing.

Except for its palette. I like that. Pink, a nice shade of yellow, and small black and white specks here and there. It’s pleasing, and reminds me of strawberry ice cream, which is the best of the non-complicated ice cream flavors in my opinion. Lickitung even looks like it’s made to win contests based on the best ice cream consumers.

Or maybe it can just cosplay as a Yoshi

Or maybe it can just cosplay as a Yoshi

But, I mean, aside from that what is there even to look at? Lickitung is just pretty gross all around.

First: It’s fat. That’s not to say that fat things can’t be pretty, or cute or anything. No, I’m saying Lickitung is the wrong kind of fat. It’s got a pretty spherical shape to it in general and then it’s got an extremely thick tail. Like, thick to the point of being distracting. Why is it so thick? Is it to balance its frontal weight? I don’t know animal anatomy so that could be either the greatest observation I’ve ever made or the ramblings of a complete idiot.

Jesse had a Lickitung in the anime! it refused to listen to her though.

Jesse had a Lickitung in the anime! it refused to listen to her though.

But I mean really, that tongue. That tongue is the big dealbreaker here. Generation 6 brought us Greninja, another Pokemon with a completely ridiculous tongue. Greninja’s tongue, however, is cool. It wraps around its neck like a scarf, and just all around looks super amazing and cool. It wears the oversized organ well, and uses it to compliment its style.

Lickitung on the other hand has no clue what it’s supposed to do with that tongue. So it just lets it all hang out. All… out there. And stuff. Greninja using its tongue as a scarf seems to imply that it has a great deal of control over the thing. It can extend it out then wrap it around its neck and all that.

FURROW THOSE EYEBROWS LICKITUNG. YOU CAN'T SCARE ME INTO NOT CRITICIZING YOU.

FURROW THOSE EYEBROWS LICKITUNG. YOU CAN’T SCARE ME INTO NOT CRITICIZING YOU.

Since Lickitung’s tongue just sticks out and lays around it looks like it’s just… well, there. It makes it look like Lickitung has no fine control over its tongue, so little things like, I don’t know, not licking the dirt in front of you while you walk seem like an impossibility to this pink thing.

I already don’t like Lickitung’s look, but the thought of what that tongue has been exposed to makes things oh so much worse. It makes me think of things like komodo dragons and how they tend to kill prey. In case you’re unfamiliar, a komodo dragon is not a venomous lizard, but, its mouth is so incredibly filthy that anything it bites tends to die from infection. Because you know. Germs.

WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING UP THERE

WHAT ARE YOU EVEN DOING UP THERE?

At this point I was going to bring up how early, creepy Pokedex entries seem to support this by saying that Lickitung’s licks can cause paralysis, and will be tingly to anything they lick. It’s creepy, you know.

BUT! I learned something myself today. It turns out that new research conducted in 2013 disproved the whole filthy komodo dragon mouth thing. What was believed to be a komodo dragon biting its prey, and the prey dying shortly after due to sepsis (Basically a million kinds of bacterial infection swarming the wound) was actually just a regular bite creating a wound, followed up by the prey’s tendency to retreat to water afterwards. Water that was typically full of feces, which would infect the wound and blah blah blah.

Thus ends today’s entry on komodo dragons. Be careful out there explorers!

DID YOU KNOW?

This is minor. So, so minor. It’s barely even worth mentioning. Lickitung used to have some markings above its eyes, or eyebrows, depending on what you’re looking at. These disappeared after Generation 1, but not before we got to look at them an awful lot.

In Lickitung's original art they look like eyebrows!

In Lickitung’s original art they look like eyebrows!

I know these seem minor, but, I dunno, Lickitung’s completely bald head is kinda recognizable to me. These eyebrows humanize it just a little bit, and I don’t know if I like that. Of course, the anime went on to have Jesse get a Lickitung that  varies between having eyebrows and having yellow markings above its eyes.

This may be my new favorite reaction image.

This may be my new favorite reaction image.

Anyway, just something small I noticed since I had nothing else really. Take a look at the first image on this page if you really want an idea of what the modern Lickitung’s forehead looks like.

USING LICKITUNG IN BATTLE
Little Cup only!

stats via pokemondb

Why is this allowed?

Minor rant here. Why is this allowed? I remember reading an interview by Masuda or someone else at GameFreak awhile back where they basically said that some Pokemon are intentionally terrible because if every Pokemon was good then you wouldn’t have a proper difficulty curve through the game. I don’t consider this a valid excuse in the slightest, because there are other ways in which you can create a difficulty curve. Give early enemies awful movesets, or just hack their stats to be lower, or something. Anything! But until Lickitung got an evolution in Generation 4 how was it supposed to get anything done? 90 HP isn’t bad, but 75/75 Defenses are far from amazing. On top of that, both of its attacking stats are atrocious, and its Speed is low so it can’t even try and be a fast supporter or something. Lickitung was thoroughly and completely useless when released, and  the fact that GameFreak does this really does upset me. There’s plenty of Pokemon that I love and wish were good, but were intentionally made bad for some dumb difficulty curve. I cry every day because I can’t use something as cute as Maractus on my team because it’s awful. That last sentence was a joke, by the way. I wasn’t going to point that out but I know there’s a lot of idiots out there that’ll take any statement made at face value if there isn’t an obvious explanation behind it that can be pointed to at the time of writing.

Anyway, rant aside, Lickitung is actually not that bad these days. It got two huge boosts in later generations. One, an evolution, meaning it’s eligible for Little Cup. Two, Eviolite, meaning those 75/75 defenses coupled with a 90 HP are now absolutely amazing. Protect and Wish are two great moves you’ll need on a supporting Pokemon like Lickitung, and Toxic is, as always, a great method of attack. Heal Bell is an alternative to Toxic if you want to go full cleric, and just to avoid completely becoming Taunt bait you’ll want Body Slam or Knock Off as an attack. Body Slam is good as an 85 BP STAB that can Paralyze, while Knock Off is just an always useful move.

Of course, Lickitung gets access to the mildly useful ability Oblivious, so if you want to stick 4 Status moves onto it you’re more than welcome to. Oblivious provides immunity to a few status effects including Taunt, but Lickitung also gets access to the quite decent Cloud Nine, if you’re having trouble with weather teams. Most of the time though, you’ll want Oblivious, even if you plan on running an attack.

ARBITRARY SCORES

APPEARANCES: 2/5
A nice pleasing easter palette, and nice, soft colors. Shame about, you know, what it actually looks like.

DESIGN: 1/5
WHAT AM I LOOKING AT?

BATTLE: 4/5
Surprisingly decent these days.

LICKITUNG IS: AN AWFUL/NAME
It is. It really really is.

OVERALL: 2.3/5
108
L-Lewd!