Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Pokemon - A Plot to Do... Something Bad


I ran across Dogasu’s Backpack, an old Pokémon website I haven’t been to in years. It has a collection of anti-Pokémon material. “Anti-Pokémon” in this case referring to claims that Pokémon is immoral. Now, some of the stuff there has a good point, like the valid claim that Jynx is/was racist, but others are just silly and ignorant. There are, of course, religious nuts who think Pokémon is of the devil. The most absolutely ludicrous one, though, is a rant from a guy, David W. Hodges, who sees the Pokémon anime as an evil tool of Japan to subliminally corrupt American children with sexual imagery. Dogasu’s Backpack’s webmaster says that the article is so ridiculous they didn’t see the need to insert MST3K-style remarks, but I found myself doing that anyway as I read it, so I might as well make that another Going Rampant screed.


Hodges starts off with:

This is not an attack upon an “innocent animation.” These are observations, and associated thoughts, of a crafty cartoon series which is targeted at a young, impressionable child audience.  It has not taken any unusual, extreme efforts to locate “suspect” images and themes presented here, only suspicion enough to take the time to observe the show.

I don’t have anything wrong with what has explicitly been said so far. I will note that while he says it hasn’t taken any extreme efforts to find things, which I would equate to finding Roger Rabbit Easter eggs by going through scenes frame-by-frame, he not only goes through frame-by-frame but seems specifically on the lookout for anything that might possibly have anything to do with sex the way a teenage boy analyzes dialog to insert a “that’s what she said”. Anyway, then he says:

Television does promote a mental state of hypnotic induction, so efforts were made to watch the tube without “zoning out” in the light pulses.

Uh…? Television programs might cause one to internalize ideas if one’s not paying attention, but hypnotic state? Really?

My curiosity was first aroused by mind control issues suggested by the Pokemon induced epileptic seizures in hundreds of Japanese children.  I understand that that particular episode was subsequently edited for American release.

Mind control??? Pokémon aired an episode in Japan that was about fighting a battle in cyberspace. To illustrate this battle and the surrounding world, the animators put in a lot of flashing lights. This turned out to be a safety hazard that caused seizures in some individuals, and the episode was—I believe—heavily dimmed in syndication and just to be safe was never aired in the States. They certainly never intended to hurt anyone!

I acted upon my curiosity when it was transformed into suspicion by a posting from [EWAR], the Electronic Warfare newsletter.

While Observing my first Pokemon episode, the first thing out of the ordinary which stood out, catching my attention, was a briefly viewed little girl in the introduction, a child which seemed embarrassed, holding down a suggestively short skirt with both her hands.  After discovering what I did, I continued observing episodes to see if there were any more instances of sexual suggestion, and indeed there were.

A couple of AOLers recently emailed me after “interp-reading” this page out of context, and I now know that the original Japanese lyrics to the Pokemon theme song include the following verse:

To catch all the Pocket Monsters, I'll go through trees, the water, the fire, and even under the dresses of girls!

Okay, that is fairly relevant. The Japanese version of the anime is a lot racier than the English dub. Pikachu does dash under a girl’s skirt in the opening. She’s not exactly a little girl, at least in the age group of the protagonists. Considering that it’s a children’s show, that’s not terribly unexpected. That said, while sexuality is in there, a lot of it flies over kids’ heads. For one, because the dialog in the dub is considerably tamer, and because our attention isn’t drawn to visual sexual references like with the girl’s skirt without dialog cues.

I have yet to hear from any children who feel there is anything wrong with sexual expressions.  It is, after all, a part of Japanese culture, I am repeatedly told.

I have the feeling he doesn’t understand what his/others’ kids are talking about. I’m guessing they weren’t watching the Japanese version and so would have been referring to either Japanese kids or American kids mature enough to know how to illegally download Japanese shows, in which case they would already be exposed to the foreign culture.

And, after all, government controlled public schools now introduce sexuality to elementary students, and in some cases, kids are given condoms.  It is my belief that sexualizing children is a very, very bad cultural and social indicator, a step closer to collapsing what was once a Great Nation, a godly people.

Perhaps Pokemon is only a small drop in a sea of secular humanism, but by the same logic, it takes less than a teaspoon of water to drown a human.

Yeah, because kids would never have sex if they weren’t taught how to do it safely and because teenage pregnancy has never been a problem ever. Honestly, kids are sexual. Humans are sexual. There are a few asexual people, but the vast majority always has been sexual. Babies masturbate. A show about a boy depicting said boy wanting to look under that girl’s skirt is not pushing it. When the country was first settled, everyone knew about sex, and “fornication” was a popular example of a four syllable word taught to children. Desexualizing children arrived about a century later. If the “Great Nation” is collapsing, maybe we should revert to traditional family values?

Most all which we perceive is lost to surface consciousness, incorporated, instead, into the Greater Subconscious Mind, Unfiltered.  Brick by brick, mental hallways and alcoves are built through childhood's daily mazes, with stones of thoughts and notions, mortared unquestioned to the conscious mind.  The images and ideas projected at children build the foundation of who they are to become.  That is how a young mind is molded.  Television is a wicked, proven controller, an unhealthy nanny, sitter, or hypnotist.  Its victimized puppet puppies and children will, in blind anger or ignorance, try to defend what they cannot; this is true of brainwashing victims, in general.

Well… Some things are internalized, yeah. Parents should talk to their kids and let them know what they think of the messages of TV shows, sure, but TV isn’t a tool of the Communists or anything like that. “Victimized puppet puppies”? Really? That should be a band.

What could be sinister about a cute animation which once sent hundreds of Japanese children into seizures with flashing lights, strobing from a character's eyes?

Well, nothing if it wasn’t intentional! Tragic, maybe, but not sinister.

It has been suggested that Pokemon may be a part of the quiet new frontier of electronic influence, the science of adjusting, or re-tuning, consciousness using light pulses and / or specific sound frequency oscillations. If this is, in fact, a hidden truth of Pokemon, it only worsens the impact of the dirty little secret which rests within plain sight, a secret which anyone with a VCR can confirm. 

LOLWUT? That’s a joke, right?


R-right?

There is a pedophiliac undercurrent within the animated Pokemon series, and it all begins in each episode with a sneaky little Pikachu.

I don’t think children perving on children their own age counts as pedophilia… Maybe stupid laws count it as such, but that’s stupid.

Within the middle of every episode's startup introduction, there is a sequence of character presentations which are not episode clippings.  This particular sequence of the introduction begins with the main character, Ash Catchem, joined a second later by his companions Misty and Brock.  Next comes the image of the antagonistic team Rocket (Jessie & James), displaced immediately by their 3 Pokemons, centered upon the cat “Meowth.” Then comes the image of Ash Catchem's arch-rival, Gary, followed by receding views of 3 different Pokemon in succession as the camera seems to pull backwards very rapidly.  Next, you see Ash standing in a road, bouncing a Pokeball in his hand, while in the background, Pikachu is running towards the camera very fast.

Ash quickly fades back and out of view.

He is replaced by a young girl standing, feet spread, wearing leg warmers, an extremely short green skirt, an orange blouse, and a really huge red bow at her collar.  (This girl has no role in the show.  Suddenly, Pikachu comes charging forward, running between her legs with its tail held high.  Pikachu's tail lifts the little girl's skirt and displays her uncovered vaginal cleft for 3 brief frames.  The remaining frames of the little girl show her looking downward, with her knees suddenly brought together and both hands holding down her skirt, all this while Pikachu completes a center screen leap into a light.

Yeah, the only “pedophilia” involved here is the grown man staring at the young girl’s crotch with such intensity that he played it frame-by-frame, looking for her genitals. Okay, after reading this I went through and looked at it. First of all, this is all happening very fast and the kids’ eyes are on Pikachu, on the left side of the frame, not the girl in the background on the right. There is no reason to focus on her unless you’re a Japanese kid hearing the verbal cue. Second, those are her panties.

This pubic “peek-atyou” portion is immediately followed by a brief scene showing the 4 main authority figures, standing together, giving a single, synchronized nod to the viewer, as if they are condoning what the subconscious just saw.

If no one consciously saw that—I think it’s questionable anyone subconsciously saw that—then they can’t take away any kind of complex message from it like that authority figures condone… what exactly? Flipping girls’ skirts up with your tail while running into the light?

The sequence is completed with a huge dragon, a great cone of fire erupting from his mouth.

I’m guessing he sees some kind of phallic significance here, but sometimes a dragon is just a dragon. It’s a clip from an episode in which characters run from a Charizard. I believe it’s a giant robot from the episode where they’re stranded on an island with giant Pokémon that turns out to be a theme park.

The original, Japanese, theme song lyrics include the following verse: To catch all the Pocket Monsters, I'll go through trees, the water, the fire, and even under the dresses of girls!  Once you clearly glimpse the intentional illustration of the little girl's vagina, Pikachu suddenly makes much more sense when you listen to the way the name sounds, which is "Peek-atyou."  Although this only works in the English translation from the original Japanese, would it not be logical to assume that even an “Americanized” translation would carry traces and hints of original intents?  Pikachu...Peek-atyou... say it Out Loud several times until you hear the secret.

Sigh… Not a vagina. Panties.

And “Pikachu” is not a translation. It’s the original Japanese! This is what is known as an unfortunate bilingual pun, which is only meaningful in this context.

He then starts talking about how someone named Jon Kelly sent him audio clips that when reversed seem to have sinister messages in English.

These include:
GET A GUN, MAKE A BOMB,
*MOLEST ME (a quote by Misty, & her reversed message,) SUCK A PENIS, WE SCREW YOU.

And:

Jon also has samples taken from the theme music which opens the show.
"We're a make believe family," was one example.

That’s… Wow. You know, you could reverse anything and hear all kinds of things. It’s rarely intentional. Twin Peaks specifically recorded dialog backwards phonetically for a dream sequence and no one can understand them. Skeptoid has a good podcast episode about reverse messages.

“Pocket Monsters” began as a video game or trading card game, (I am not exactly sure of the sequence of events) and when it expanded into an animated series, the name was shortened to “Pokemon.” Knowing this, set aside the Pokemon connection for a moment, and consider the impression made by someone saying that they have a monster in their pocket.  There is culturally inherent sexual innuendo involved in the idea of having, or showing, a 'pocket monster.'  It seems the sort of ploy depravity would use trying to seduce a child.

Satoshi Tajiri created his Pocket Monsters as an extension of how he used to collect and trade bugs as a kid. Presumably, he would put them in his pocket. He later came up with the idea of collecting monsters instead of bugs, and the Pokéballs to put the monsters in your pocket. It’s a game for kids. While “Pocket Monster” can be made into an innuendo, that is not its intention. Frankly, you can think up innuendoes about anything. Is this guy seriously insinuating that Nintendo would consciously create a game to promote child molesting?

One could try to argue that there is no connection, but the very fact that there is connection enough to argue about should be connection enough to concern any parent or guardian of a young, impressionable mind.

That’s insane troll logic! You can’t make an absurd connection and then claim that the connection you yourself drew is any indication of something problematic. Okay, maybe if a lot of people had trouble with it there would be something to it based on the value of public perception, but this is in the extreme minority! You know, because most people aren’t out of their minds!

It is a curious thing that, within the world of Pokemon, one is either battling to become a "master" or aspiring to be a "breeder."  To be a breeder is the noblest goal, according to the show.

No, it isn’t. It’s a relatively obscure goal. It’s also about raising animals like a zookeeper or farmer, not actually breeding yourself.

It’s surprising he doesn’t go after “master”, considering a lot of anti-Pokémon people do that based on slavery connotations.

In Japan, Japanese animation is primarily adult oriented.  It often contains violence, eroticism, and sexuality.  Even so, why have such things being woven into what is unquestionably a children's animated series?  Although I cannot provide an answer to this, I can provide more suggestion and evidence of it.

It’s not woven in, really. Some Japanese stuff for kids is more sexual because the overall culture has fewer hang-ups than America. This guy’s nuts, though.

The mons veneris, Latin for “hill of Venus” (Roman Goddess of love) is the pad of fatty tissue that covers the pubic bone below the abdomen but above the labia.  The mons is sexually sensitive in some women and protects the pubic bone from the impact of sexual intercourse.  Knowing this, consider what is implied to “pokie mons.” Though “Pokemon” is less the 's,' I would argue that the monster is still there, subtly woven sexual innuendo within the show's infrastructure.  Is this just another coincidental connection children will probably miss consciously, or another intended furrow in seed-rows of the subconscious??  The mind subconscious doesn't miss a beat, but consciousness grabs maybe 1 beat out of 15 on a good day, where beats are bits of information.

What… the… frak…?

Uh, I thought “Pokémon” equals “Pocket Monster” equals sexual innuendo used by child molesters? If you’ve changed your mind, you edit! You don’t just put in two contradictory opinions in what’s presented as a linear argument!

Seriously, though, what the frak? “Pokémon” is a portmanteau of “pocket” and “monster”, and it’s only pronounced “pokie mon” by people who have no idea what they’re doing (it’s “poe-kay-mahn” in the English dub, and “poe-keh-moe-nnn” in original Japanese). It’s a Japanese handling of two English words, and it’s not intended to have any meaning outside the contraction.

I’ll also note that “mons” is a very technical term. It’s generally not used by the kind of people who would say “pokie” in the same breath.

[Got-ta catch'em, gotta catch'em all!  Gotta catch'em all, Pokemon!]

These are a few words from Poke'mon's theme song, and as often as they are repeated, one is apt to remember or react to them.  Gotta “catch'em.” Gotta “catchem.” Catchem seems the verb, the action; or, perhaps, an Order To Act. 

Gotta catch'em all!  Gotta catch'em all!

You hear this over and over and over, in the opening, in the closing, in the ads...  Once in awhile, “Catchem” gets stuck behind “Ash,” becoming a name with a “contextual bias;” it seems slightly out of place. “C”Ash Catchem. cash catchem.

What is he even arguing? That Pokémon is trying to make kids buy Pokémon products or save their money? Is he saying it encourages stealing? What?

He then starts talking about episode 34, “The Kangaskhan Kid”. I unfortunately wasn’t able to review this episode myself, so I can’t verify anything but will give his analysis my best analysis.

One of the more disturbing episodes in the Pokemon series is called “The Kangaskhan Kid.” The story is set in a Pokemon reserve, and it involves a young, boomerang wielding wild boy, Tomo, who has been adopted by a herd of Kangaskhan.  As the show progresses, a man and his wife are introduced; the man, called “papa,” is short, and wears a mustache which gives him an Adolphish look. 

I really doubt this guy was based off of Adolph Hitler. The whole episode is a parody of Tarzan, and Papa has a hat like one of those English explorer guys, so I’m willing to bet it’s just a take on that kind of figure.

This couple explains that they have come searching for their son, Tommy.  In a flashback sequence, we watch papa suspended a very young boy outside of his moving helicopter, to give the child a better view.  We then watch papa drop Tommy, to his wife's dismay.  Papa later blames her for not holding the child herself. 

After some pleading, the main characters volunteer to help the couple search for Tommy, and in the next scene, the protagonists struggle and complain as they carry the couple upon a pole suspended platform.  Mama said, “I apologize for this.  Papa doesn't get outdoors much, and he's not in the best of shape.” Never does she offer to walk and lighten their load.  Papa then pipes in with “I admit it!"  Tomo, or Tommy, soon finds the group as they try to help a young, injured Kangaskhan.  Mistaking their intentions as being hurtful, Tomo throws his boomerang and strikes Ash in the head, only to be screamed at and berated by Misty for doing so.

Comedic Sociopathy, I suppose. I’d wager we aren’t supposed to like Papa very much.

Mama begins trying to get Tomo to remember them, but without success.  Papa suddenly bashes the boy on his head with a club, knocking him unconscious.

Well, it’s a slapstick cliché that if you have amnesia from a concussion that a second concussion will bring your memory back. It’s stupid, but it’s a well-used cliché. Tomo doesn’t have amnesia from a concussion, but the basic logic is still there, I guess.

Soon after Tomo regains consciousness, Mama again prompts him to remember them.  Papa then begins undressing as he prompts the boy saying, “Tommy, remember Papa?” Misty quickly strikes Papa on the head with a club and drags his body away, stating "One memory at a time!"

I found a clip of the scene here. This is a case where I think he’s making an adequate criticism. I think that probably was a pedophilia joke that 4Kids missed for some reason.

As the episode progresses, confrontations with the evil Team Rocket occur as the result of their latest plan to thieve and create mayhem using a huge metal replica (armed) of a Kangaskhan.

The evil Team Rocket behaves evilly. Imagine that.

Papa eventually saves the day by crashing his helicopter into the monster,

Ah, the days before 9/11…

then Tommy remembers them as he views the wreckage, believing they are dead.  His parents were not killed, however, and Tommy then faces a dilemma of not wanting to leave his Kangaskhan family.  The show ends with the entire family, dressed in animal skins like Tomo's, tucked within the pouch of a very large Kangaskhan.

Aw, that’s sweet, and a cute ending.

I have read nationally syndicated articles praising Pokemon as being a wholesome, nonviolent, value filled animation, but I can only imagine that such opinions came from the Pokeproduction propaganda press release package. 

Well, “nonviolent” is pushing it. The whole basis of the show is Pokémon fighting each other.

Pokemons do not battle with the level of violence which the human characters exhibit, specifically the two lead, redheaded females, Misty & Jessie.  While you would expect the antagonist (Jessie) to be hot-tempered, she is only occasionally violent.  Misty's temper, however, explodes regularly.  Sometimes her head enlarges to 5 times its normal size as she SCREAMS with an enormous mouth of fanged teeth.  More often, Misty's temper results in physical violence when someone aggravates her, creating a huge, raised knot on the head or face of her victim, usually her friends, Ash Catchem or Brock.

Comedic Sociopathy conducted in an extremely cartoony way. The shark teeth thing is just a way to illustrate anger, and isn’t really happening, nor is it played in a horrific manner.

(Brock's character just left the show, and someone new has joined the little team.)

Consider the message that is being transferred by scenes of lashing out in anger, the message of a female striking a male friend, especially since the relationships and violence are closer to realism than any of the super-hero battling or ray gun blasting type cartoons.  There is certainly realistic personality development and interaction between the protagonists.  Apologies are never offered, but the huge knots Misty inflicts on her friends do disappear quickly. Perhaps exposing that there is underlying sexuality and occasional, unjustifiable violence will encourage more adults to watch this show.

Misty sometimes acts unprovoked, but usually it’s in response to something mean or perverted said by the other two. Not that the pervert/wallop dynamic isn’t problematic by way of excusing sexist displays, but he’s criticizing it for all the wrong reasons. It’s just cartoony violence. It’s not treated realistically in the same way Jesse’s rocket launcher is.


Here is an edited-for-size movie capture of the scene described below. A symbolism festival was on display in a relative still frame 4 second sequence in the episode “Sparks Fly for Magnemite.” An electronic orchestra begins. The background is matted with small hearts and large, pastel spheres or bubbles.  The scene features Meowth, dressed oddly in a female nurse's uniform, wearing a hat with a large, red cross on it.

Because Team Rocket never uses crossdressing for comedic effect.

At the top of the screen, on either side, is a naked cherub, each sporting a long, slender erection, and each sounding a trumpet towards Meowth's head.  It could be argued that the cherubs aren't classically indecent, but that they only have their farthest leg thrust forward at a... strange angle.

Um, yeah… That’s a foot. Why the hell would anyone think that’s anything other than a foot?! It’s not a strange angle when you consider the position on the other leg. The cherubs are prancing.

Whether or not the inference was intentional or not is irrelevant to the fact that it appears positioned and perfectly illustrated to represent a phallus.

No, it isn’t. It’s not angled the way an erect penis looks. It is, however, perfectly angled like a foot. And yes, it being unintentional is highly relevant to a discussion of the show’s morality. An unintentional resemblance is commonly referred to as a coincidence.

Speaking of coincidences:

Hiding the base of the hat's red cross is Meowth's gold forehead plate (his luck charm).  It is at an odd angle to the bright red cross, and together they resembles a casket on display, viewed from an upward angle.  This effect is strengthened by the two trumpeting cherubs on either side.

Oh, boy. *shakes head* Okay, Meowth always wears the charm. For this gag, he’s wearing a nurse’s outfit. The traditional nurse’s outfit has a red cross. Thus… no symbolism! The cherubs are clearly there for the “love” theme, as evidenced by all the hearts flying around.

During this scene, Meowth maintains a left eye wink, with the slitted pupil of his widely opened right eye giving him a disturbing reptilian look.

Or, you know, a feline look. Given that he is, in fact, a cat.

The bustle of the shoulder fabric of his left sleeve resembles a skull, another of the death suggestions.

No, it doesn’t! *sigh* If anything, it looks like a pink gas mask. Or a mushroom. Or maybe it’s just a sleeve.

His left paw rests on his hip, and the two balled fingers you see, combined with his forearm, strongly resemble a large phallus, with his fingers resembling two testicles.  His right paw holds a large syringe with a long needle, and in the method that it was drawn in his hand, it could also easily represent a phallus.

Wow. I mean, wow. This is like the mindsets of the oversexed teenage boys who maintain Fail Blog. I mean, wow.

You know, if you want to play this game, anything can be a target. Look at the Washington Monument. The “Great Nation” must be fundamentally corrupted, hmm? Plus, the Christian church has as its symbol two penises tied together to make a cross. It doesn’t matter if it’s unintentional; it’s still homoerotic that Jesus is nailed to the penises.

The point is refracting light.

As in… precum? Is he still on about the penis metaphor or what?

Sex and death, with a dose of needle, dominate the imagery of this odd, out-of-context scene.

No, they don’t. And it’s a fantasy sequence to illustrate how Meowth feels. There are plenty of fantasy sequences in the show.

Considering that Meowth is one of the “bad guys,” a nurse's uniform and an ominous syringe does not convey a healthy feeling.

And we all know that bad guys are supposed to give people healthy feelings.

During this segment, Meowth says, “We got another chance.”

So? Team Rocket’s always trying to succeed at something. They don’t.

In another part of this episode, Ash mistakenly says “streaker,” meaning to say “stalker,” and Misty reacts to the word, blushing heavily and acting nervously guilty, but this is ignored by the guys.

“Nervously guilty”? Is this to suggest that Misty is a streaker? I think that’s probably a tamed down version of some racier Japanese joke, anyway. Are streakers off limits? I’m pretty sure the kids of this audience know about streakers.

As I mentioned in a previous section, Japanese anime is known for its sex and violence.  A recent detractor of this expose had the following to say:

"...If you think Pokemon is shocking, you should check out the annual Penis worship that goes on publicly in Japanese society. There, the phallus is revered, not reviled.  Statues of the penis are stroked, kissed, even made into toys and necklaces for the WHOLE FAMILY, for storefront displays, etc.  They don't view these things the way westerners do at all.  To them, fertility images are cherishable, honorable and decent (not a bad attitude)..."

In response, I question the truth of his statement, based upon communications from numerous Japanese corespondents who have objected to the outrageous notion of public phallus worship or adoration.

That would be the Kanamara Matsuri, a fertility festival associated with the Shinto religion. It’s not a year-round thing and only goes on in Kawasaki, which is possibly the cause of miscommunication between Hodges and his correspondents.

Wrong or right, the USA is a sexually repressed western culture.

As a sexually repressed society, subtle sexual messages can elicit less than healthy responses in children, or adults, if guilt or shame is the trained reaction.

Then don’t promote guilt and shame.

Without open family guidance or moral centering, charged messages could also lead to sexual exploration, exploitation, or even promiscuity, at a very early age, such as we currently see evidenced in society.

I doubt people become promiscuous because of cartoon cats holding syringes.

Yes, sexual images and messages are evident in a frame or two of some formats / versions of Disney movies, but these are isolated incidents which have been... corrected.  It is clear that Disney has never produced a sexually coded animation and marketed it towards youth.  Sure, sexuality pervades almost all television shows, but none of these shows are suitable for, or targeted towards, young children.

I wonder about who he’s blaming here. He dismisses Disney incidents even though they have real versions of the kinds of things he’s reaching for. Those were definitely pulled off by Disney animators, so Disney has in a way been responsible for producing that material. It seems like by dismissing Disney, he’s saying that the Nintendo corporation is responsible for putting sexual imagery in Pokémon as part of some organized attempt to corrupt American kids. Even though he describes Japanese correspondents and attempts to defend Japanese culture from slander, I really feel that he’s acting out of xenophobia toward Japan by dismissing the actions of an American company and promoting vague blame toward Japan or a Japanese company.

Pokemon is rated TV-Y, but it has blatantly base, sexual imagery and inference, more than most other shows I know of, short of adult dramas or steamy movies you can find playing on HBO or Showtime at night.

Oh, yeah, when I think of the most sexual shows, I think Californication, The Tudors, and Pokémon.

How often do you find multiple phallic representations in even the bawdiest of situation comedies?

Um, a lot? I can think of that episode of Spin City where Stewart gets a sexually-suggestive desk ornament, and one of the women gets a phallic pole desk ornament in retaliation. The Mayor comes in and wonders aloud why the media says he’s gay, picking up the pole and rubbing it against him contemplatively. I’m sure there are many other examples. The thing with those, though, is that the phallic implication is overt and deliberately in there to amuse the audience. This is like finding shapes in clouds.

How about suggestions of death, or hypodermic needles?

Also, a lot. Death is a pervasive topic that intrigues everyone. Even Sesame Street talks about death, as in how to cope with the loss of a good friend. The needles don’t come up very often, but then they don’t come up very often in Pokémon either. Still, TV Tropes has a page about characters being afraid of needles, so it must be fairly common.

How can this be good for impressionable, thirsty minds?

Catharsis?

It is clearly intentional,

Clearly.

so it must be asked, “what is the intent?” Sex and death imagery is often used within advertising in order to grab the subconscious, and I need not point out how enormously profitable the Pokemon industry has become.  Children are even assaulting other children over Pokemon trading cards.

What’s the claim? That Pokémon is trying to make kids aggressive? For what purpose? How does that increase sales? Would sex imagery even cause aggression? I mean, it’s not like this alleged sexual imagery is aggressive. The Japanese lyric could have that connotation, but that’s a lyric in a foreign language, and he hasn’t really touched on that except to point out how the “under that girl’s skirt” moment was intentionally racy. In any case, I would suggest that if Pokémon wasn’t around to exist as the trigger to a fight, those kids would fight over something else. Kids aren’t exactly angels, you know.

I am well aware of the translations involved in character names such as Pikachu, but I also know that self revelation is a very interesting facet of the English language.  The proverbial “shoe” fits my observation of 'Peek-atYou.'

Again, that’s not a translation! That’s Japanese being sounded out by an English-speaker trying to fit it into his own language. It’s like taking the name Hiroyuki and saying it means “hear a yucky”, which is clearly a reference to a child hearing someone having sex. It’s just as outlandish as that.

The series creators clearly play with words.  Take, for example, the Pokemon characters EKANS and ARBOC, name reversals of SNAKE and COBRA.

Okay, that part is true. However, that’s a special case. The reversed spellings only apply to those two Pokémon. The Japanese name for Ekans is Arbo, which is an anagram for the Japanese word for boa, as in boa constrictor. Its evolved form was named Arbok, which the English designers recognized could function as “cobra” backwards, and they kept its name the same and made Arbo into Ekans to match. As those characters are actually snakes, this makes perfect sense and isn’t actually slipping hidden messages in there.

Listening can reveal as much as watching.  Sound out the word Pokemon in reverse and you get NOMEKOP (NO ME KOPe).

What… the… frak…? “No me kope?” Seriously? That’s… what does that even mean? “Buy this product and lose your coping methods”? And, anyway, this guy has already said that the name “Pokémon” references child molestation, and then made a completely different claim that it means poking the mons, and now there’s this “no me kope”… What the hell?

What the heeeeeeeeell???

These things were brought to my attention by a reader, as was the sexual connotation of the character JIGGLY PUFF, which would seem to suggest a mother's breast's nipple, and its effect of putting a child to sleep, as is the character's power.

What the…? What? What? How could you possibly…? Guh, hgfdkutdcch *banging head on keyboard*

…Okay, Jigglypuff is a fluff ball. It’s a poofy ball of fluff like a plushie. It in no way resembles a nipple except perhaps in its color inasmuch as some people have pink nipples. If that’s what we’re using as a connection, that is seriously stretching it. Its sleep-inducing power is in its voice, as it sings an incredibly soothing song. By that standard, Mary Poppins is a nipple. And what’s with breastfeeding having sexual connotations? Does this dude have an Oedipus complex?

The character BUTTERFREE, when first introduced in the series, repeated the high pitched phrase "e-e-e-eat me... e-e-e-eat me."  It clearly was not repeating its own name, as is usually the case for Pokemon creatures.

*facepalms* Wow. I mean, jeez! How much of a sex-addict do you have to be to see and hear sexual references everywhere?

For the record, Butterfree sounds more like “e-e-e-po-nee…”

Regardless of original name meanings or translations, obvious intents guided the English transformation of Pokemon.  This is sadly another example of the dishonorable tradition of lacing children's shows with propaganda.  Does anyone remember H.R. Puffinstuff, the magic mushrooms, and the talking flute?

Helpful, Relaxing Puffinstuff?

I thought the claim was H.R. stood for “Hand-Rolled”? In any case, that’s a fantasy show that was accused of standing for drugs and nothing came of the allegations.

There are clearly many examples of bad television, but no other “children's show” is as lucratively popular as Pokemon.  I appreciate the supportive responses I have received, but I find it sad that almost all of the negative feedback I have been sent offers nothing more than rude, immature comments without substance.

Oh, gee. I wonder why? It couldn’t have anything to do with the original content being immature and without substance.

Seriously, Jigglypuff’s a nipple?

It does, however, support my observation that victims of television will blindly defend it, even when they have no grasp of what they are trying to argue.

Irony. The irony is killing me.

(In other words, I apologize to the children who are angered by what I have revealed, but you really should be directing any angry letters to the show's creators.

I did not put these things into the show, and should not be faulted for revealing them to your parents.

Yes, kids, you should be faulted. You should be faulted if you buy into this crap.

Oh. My. Flying. Spaghetti. Monster.

This is such… unbelievable nonsense. How could a human being come up with this? This is madness. (Madness? THIS IS KANTO!)

Look, even without the outlandish claims being made, this piece suffers because there aren’t exact claims being made. There’s “look, something that looks bad” without getting into the implications of that. Is Nintendo plotting against their consumers? Doesn’t quite make sense, considering they lose if they melt the brains of their main audience. Is it Japan’s government plotting against America? Is it just those untrustworthy Japanese—no claim necessary? Often Holocaust-deniers will do similar things, pointing at bits of history and saying “hmm, isn’t that strange?” without actually coming out and saying what they suspect happened—you know, because that’s easy enough to discredit—but they can play on the distrust of Jews by just making the suggestion. I highly suspect this guy Hodges of playing on distrust of Japanese, using that xenophobia to string together the inconsistencies. It doesn’t matter that he contradicts himself repeatedly because Pokémon is Japanese and Japanese are weird foreigners and look at the bad things!

This guy is an idiot, obsessed with sex, probably racist, and spends far too much time staring at the crotch of an animated underage girl. Just sayin’.

3 comments:

Krisara said...

Wow...Was this guy even serious? Was he high or something when he wrote this out?
I mean, this is sad. And because he kept changing his opinions on the same topic, basically blaming Nintendo and keeping Disney safe, bashing Pokemon, pointing out obviously coincidental things or just plain stupidity on this guys part, pretty much does prove he's either got a fear of the Japanese or other races altogether. (Nice observation there, friend.)
I like your analysis of this idiot's analysis very much~
You never know what a few misunderstandings and coincidences will do when someone's as messed up as this guy,do you?

Dragonclaws said...

I took a class with a guy who had similar conspiracy theories about Disney where he thought the sexual Easter eggs were deliberately ordered by the higher-ups as part of an evil capitalist plot, so I don't think this anti-Pokémon rant is too outrageous for the Hodges guy to have been serious when he wrote it.

TOSS said...

David W. Hodges is a pedophile, a racist, an inbred paranoid hick, and on top of all that he has a little dick. It's embarrassing.