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Fridge Brilliance

     Pokémon Species in General 
  • Certain Pokémon that debut as a gift/event-only may be originally from the region after its gen instead:
    • In Pokémon Diamond and Pearl and Platinum, there are no wild Riolu, but in Black and White, there's a cave filled with the little buggers. This can mean only one thing: Riolu is actually native to Unova instead of Sinnoh! By extension, this may also mean that Riley (who gives the Riolu egg) is from Unova! Alternately Riolu are native to Kalos or Alola where they are similarly found wild.
    • In Ruby and Sapphire, there are no Beldum in the wild, but you can catch them wild in the gen 4, 5, and 7 games. So Steven got his Beldum from Sinnoh, Unova, or Alola and gave it to you because they are actually native to Sinnoh.
    • Another thing: In Black and White, you can only encounter Zorua and Zoroark via fateful encounters involving legendaries, but you can find them in the wild normally in X and Y, suggesting they're native to Kalos rather than Unova.
    • And let's not forget the first example of this: Farfetch'd is native to Johto.
    • From the same generation is Jynx, which in Kanto can only be acquired by trading a Poliwhirl for one in Cerulean City. In Johto, however, you can catch one in the Ice Path near Blackthorn City, suggesting that Jynx is native to Johto (and that the NPC in Cerulean has been to Johto recently).
    • Comically, Eevee, a Pokémon that has been around since Gen 1, is native to Kalos by this logic. They appeared as wild Pokémon in Sinnoh and Unova, but they did so in someone's backyard and a park, implying they were put there by human intervention.
    • In a similar vein is Corphish. It's introduced in Hoenn, but its Pokedex entry states that it's not native to Hoenn (it is also stated not to be native to Alola.). It then appears in the wild in the successive generations, suggesting its home could be one of those regions
  • If looked at in retrospect, it is very clear the Pokémon are Pocket Monsters, that are more than content to maul any human that lacks the ability to defend themselves ("It's unsafe! Wild Pokémon live in tall grass! You need your own Pokémon for your protection."). This neatly explains why Duels Decide Everything (you are trying to remove your foe's defense against your deadly monster or vice versa) and such. This isn't so "fridge" in Special and Orre though, where it is a tad more explicit.
    • Except if all your Pokémon faint, you're still able to run away from it and protect your Pokémon at the same time. You do lose money though. The player is in such a panic that their money falls out of their pockets.
    • Alternately, your character pays the winning Trainer to keep you from getting mauled on your way back to town. Or you're both straight up trying to mug each other.
  • Ever wondered why Water Pokèmon need a HM to learn Surf, when they should be perfectly capable of swimming on their own? That's because the move doesn't teach them how to swim, but how to safely carry you across the water.
    • The same applies for all the HM moves, actually. Fly and Dive are pretty self-explanatory, Strength is so that the Pokémon doesn't hurl the boulders out of control, Cut so their claws don't accidentally hurt someone else, and Flash (in Gen I at least) is so they can light up dark places while at the same time not potentially blinding others around them.
    • Possibly confirmed by Gen VII, where Ride Pokèmon override Hidden Moves, and your sprite while the feature is activated depicts you in safety gear. It may also serve as an in-universe explanation to why it took 7 gens for the Scrappy Mechanic to be eliminated altogether — after a few too many accidents, some people finally realized it'd be safer to relegate transportation/boulder-moving/rock-hurling duties to Pokèmon already specifically trained for those tasks, with adequate gear to boot, instead of leaving them up to the mostly-child Trainers themselves. Maybe it's not just cultural differences that make Alolans get mad at tourists who use the wrong Pokèmon to ride on.
  • The rarity of the "gift" Pokémon (ex. the starters, Eevee, Fossils). All gift Pokémon have a natural male-to-female ratio of 7 to 1, meaning that there are very few females in the wild to impregnate and give birth. It is a scientific fact that a single male with a group of females will produce more offspring than a single female with a group of males, causing an entire species of Pokémon to be very rare.
  • Up till now, there are only three butterfly Pokémon (Butterfree, Beautifly, Vivillon), while there are five moths (Venomoth, Dustox, Mothim, and Volcarona). In real life, there are many more moth species than butterfly species.
  • The reason most of the Pokémon say nothing but their names is because scientists named them after the sounds they made! There are plenty of real life animals who aren't named after the sounds they make — that kind of thing is typically reserved for animals with particularly distinct calls (the cuckoo, the dik-dik, the killdeer, etc). It's possible that some Pokémon are named after their calls (the ones that very obviously make those noises) and others are named for other reasons, like perhaps their physical appearance (for example, the aforementioned Weepinbell might have been named because it looks like a bell and a look of mild distress on its face, while its evolution Victreebel might have been named because it also looks like a bell but appears more triumphant).
  • A cool bit of potential Worldbuilding as well as aversion of Artistic License – Paleontology, the fossil Pokémon all paint an interesting picture of what the prehistoric past was like for the Pokémon world:
    • Kanto/Johto: The fossils found here are a bunch of marine creatures (Omanyte/Omastar, based on ammonites and Kabuto/Kabutops, based on eurypterids) and a Giant Flyer (Aerodactyl, based on pterosaurs). This suggests that at one time, ancient Kanto and Johto was completely covered in water, with the sea creatures all living beneath the waves and Aerodactyl spending much of its time flying overhead, plucking potential prey off the water's surface.
    • Hoenn: This one also features marine creatures (Lileep/Cradily, based on sea pens and Anorith/Armauldo, based on anomalocarids), but they are more common in this region than the Kanto or Johto ones. This could mean that they either lived in different time periods from the Kanto/Johto fossils or that ancient Hoenn had different climate patterns or conditions from Kanto or Johto. This also ties to Relicanth's continued habitation of the region, given it most likely shared the seas with them.
    • Sinnoh: Their fossils are dinosaurs, including the pachycephalosaur-based Cranidos/Rampardos and ceratopsian-based Shieldon/Bastiodon, and both of them are stated to have lived in jungles. Obviously, this suggests that prehistoric Sinnoh was covered in rainforests. This is even more sensible when one remembers that Sinnoh has a Coal Mine, and Coal is formed from prehistoric rainforests.
    • Unova: Unova is interesting, as it has a semiaquatic animal (Tirtouga/Carracosta=Archelon sea turtle) and a terrestrial/flying one (Archen/Archeops=Archaeopteryx and dromaeosaurids). Given the territories the real life Archaeopteryx had lived in, it's likely that Unova was once either a coastal region or a series of islands.
    • Kalos: Amaura/Aurorous are both noted to be polar dinosaurs and Tyrunt/Tyrantrum have feathers (though admittedly not particularly extensive ones). This makes it possible that Kalos was once a snowy tundra. The fact that the prey gained a typing that is strong against the predator hints that the Amaura line may have migrated or adapted at some point to deal with their predator like Alolan Ratatta. Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon lent support to the former possibility by noting that Tyrantrum's feathery coat may have been much more extensive back in its own time period.
    • Notably, Alola does not have its own fossil Pokémon, and the fossils found there are essentially collector's items you buy from a shop. In Real Life, the Hawaiian Islands are geologically very young, plus volcanic soils of a young age are poor at preserving fossilized remains, so very few major archaeological discoveries have been made there (aside from recently extinct species and certain kinds of plants). Since Alola is also volcanic, we can assume the same situation is true there.
    • Galar's Fossil Pokemon are a nod to Crystal Palace Dinosaurs, given their mismatched parts, and thus never really existed. But based on the individual parts (a raptor, a plesiosaur, a Dunkleosteus, and what can be assumed to be a stegosaur) it can be assumed that Galar has been through a variety of different climates in the past, from a frozen sea to a warmer sea to a tropical forest, which would make sense as in real life the British Isles are geologically very old. This is further supported by the existence of Galarian Corsola, which is noted to have become extinct in ancient times due to climate shifts, and Dreepy, which are the ghosts of ancient Pokemon.
  • The Pikaclones become this when you realize that they're almost certainly all related to each other — all of them are electric rodents with various morphological similarities, most notably the electricity producing organs in their cheeks, a trait that only they have. So Pikachu (and its evolutions), Pachirisu, Plusle, Minun, Emolga, etc. are all at least in the same family or suborder of rodents together, just adapted to different niches.
  • Almost all plot-relevant/cover legendary Pokémon start out with 0 base friendship. Considering that every villain starting from Hoenn has tried to harness legendary Pokémon power for their own selfish ends, it makes sense that they would bear some justified resentment towards humanity by the time you battle them, no? Even Mewtwo, who didn't take part in the plot, had more than enough reason to distrust humans.
    • As for the (usually non-plot relevant) trio legendaries who start with 35 base friendship, it's probably because they don't want to show themselves to just any old Trainer — the fact that some of them roam is an additional test of strength. The Sinnoh lake guardians are an exception to this; they're willing to trust you from the get-go because you released them from Team Galactic.
  • The Hitmon trio have an abysmal HP stat not only because of their small stature, but because the martial arts they represent — boxing, taekwondo, and capoeira — are high-intensity and fast-paced: it's not uncommon for a match featuring these martial arts to end with a knockout within seconds. Thus, the Hitmon trio depend on quick knockouts before they run out of stamina; various Pokédex entries for Hitmonchan even state that it can only fight for three minutes before needing to rest, a reference to the standard length of time for a boxing round.
  • Sudowoodo is a Rock-Type pokemon that disguises itself as a plant. As Bogleech observes, this is a stand-out example of protective camouflage: not only do Rock-Types take half damage from most Types that are strong against Grass-Type pokemon, but Rock deals double damage to the Bug-Types that can be assumed to be Plant-Type pokemon's natural predators.

     Moves and Abilities 
  • How the TMs work. The animation from Gen III just shows a CD being placed onto the Pokémon's head. But the CDs aren't being placed into the Pokémon; they're being loaded onto the PokéBalls containing them.
    • This can also be used to explain the Hyperspace Arsenal: Instead of carrying around ridiculous amounts of enormous supplies, you're just carrying around cards (or something) that have the information for the supplies on them.
    • In the first set of the manga, TMs are audio-books, and the player puts the headphones on the Pokémon.
  • "Brine" inflicts double damage when the opponent is low on health. Saturated salt water in your wounds? Gives new meaning to the phrase "rubbing salt in the wound".
  • In a similar vein, why does Ice Burn induce Burn instead of Ice's usual Freeze? Ever had a freezer burn? Another way to look at it is that Ice burns to the touch if it's much, much colder relative to the one it makes contact with.
  • Curse is different between Ghost types and other types. Imagine a Slowpoke cursing!
    • Yooooouuuuu... ...mooootthhheeeeeerrrrr... ...fffffffuuuuuuuuckkeeeeeerrrrr.....
    • Taken up a step when a Slowpoke that KNEW Curse was obtained!
    • OR, Ghosts just know how to use it properly, as Curse was reclassified as a Ghost-type move in Gen V.
    • Bulbapedia notes that the Japanese name of Curse is actually a pun. Using only hiragana/katakana, it can mean two things: Curse (as in what a Ghost-type will do), and Slow (Curse for other types means increasing attack and defense at the cost of speed, therefore slow).
      • And then there's Snorlax, whose most-used moveset has it doing very little but resting and cursing. (And eating, as is standard among Snorlax.) Chances are that sounds like someone you know.
  • The move Hypnosis: how do you knock someone out just by mentally telling them to go to sleep? The Lost Hero, may have an answer: it mentioned a minor Greek god named Hypnos, the god of sleep, and a possible derivation for the word "hypnosis".
  • Probably a mix of both Fridge Brilliance and Fridge Horror: several Pokémon can learn the Poison-type move Gunk Shot, including the several monkey/ape-based Pokémon such as Infernape, Primeape, Aipom, and Vigoroth. It seems random at first, until you realize that many monkeys are known for flinging their feces at aggressors...
  • Uproar is a move that causes the Pokémon to scream and shout for several turns, during which no one can sleep. Most baby Pokémon can learn Uproar by move tutor. Babies are prone to having tantrums and generally cause a lot of noise. In other words, it's basically colic as an attack.
  • Hidden Power's type and intensity is determined by the hidden IV values of the Pokémon.
  • Ever wondered why Pokémon can only know four moves at a time? Have you noticed that, unlike other RPGs, each move has its own PP? Pokémon can only learn four moves, not (only) because they have limited memory, but because they're physically unable to completely use more than four moves without being healed!
  • Why does the move Superpower reduce Attack and Defense by one stage? It's because of overexertion of the muscles, causing a minor Heroic RRoD.
  • Meloetta's Secret Art, Relic Song, is learned under peaceful circumstances and makes everyone around her happy. Most Pokémon attacks seem like they could have intent to kill. But remember that Relic Song attacks by appealing to the hearts of those listening... and in battle, it does do a decently high amount of damage, but a Pokémon that's out of HP isn't dead, but instead has either fallen unconscious or lost their will to fight. Meloetta's signature move may not do actual harm at all, but instead make the opponent simply not want to battle anymore.
  • Freeze Dry is super effective against Water because it's a method of dehydration.
  • At first, Oblivion Wing's Flying typing seems rather bizarre, given that it's described as a beam that sucks the life force out of anything it strikes, but is put in the same damage category as pecking the target, stirring up a hurricane, and whatnot. This would make it seem better suited to run off Yveltal's Dark typing instead. However, with a little thought, it actually makes sense. Flying is super-effective against Grass, Bug, and Fighting. Grass and Bug are types associated with nature and life, so they would be extra vulnerable to Oblivion Wing's nature. As for fighting, remember how aura, as used in Aura Sphere, is a form of life energy? Well, you're essentially sucking all the aura out of your target, making its ability to hit Fighting types hard make sense. Even its resistances make sense: there's not much life force to suck out of nonliving minerals like Rocks and Steel, while Electricity is the spark of life and can jump-start hearts, undermining Oblivion Wing's purpose. Finally, think of it this way: if it were Dark type, it would seem kind of odd for a move that sucks out life force to be super-effective against things which are already dead, now would it?
    • Another possible reason for the move's typing is a potential reference to vampires, which tend to be able to turn into bats, which are flying creatures.
  • Pokémon Centers don't charge anything because they just speed up the healing process. Who would pay for something they could just get by sleeping?
  • Stone Edge: "The user stabs the foe with sharpened stones from below. It has a high critical-hit ratio. " Why do you think it has a high critical hit ratio?
  • Earthquake and Magnitude do double damage to anything that is undergound. They get Buried Alive under tons of dirt and rock.
  • Why does the move Aura Sphere happen to be Fighting-type? "HADOUKEN!"
  • Powder's effect is a reference to dust explosions.
  • Counter and Mirror Coat's types make sense once one pays attention to the type chart and damage types before Generation IV:
    • Counter is a Fighting-type move, and while it deals double the damage of the physical attack that damaged the user in the previous turn and is otherwise unaffected by the type chart, it cannot damage Ghost-type Pokémon. All Ghost-type attacks dealt physical damage before Generation IV. Furthermore, in Generation I, Counter only worked on Normal and Fighting-type moves, the two types Ghost-type Pokémon happen to be immune to.
    • Mirror Coat is a Psychic-type move, and while it deals double the damage of the special attack that damaged the user in the previous turn and is otherwise unaffected by the type chart, it cannot damage Dark-type Pokémon. All Dark-type attacks dealt special damage before Generation IV.
  • Why does Roost cause a Flying Pokemon's Flying-type to be ignored for a turn? Because Roost involves the user landing so that it can rest. Its Flying-type is ignored because it literally isn't flying anymore!
  • Why, exactly, is Revenge Fighting-type? One would think that stooping down to someone's level to get back at them would fall more under Dark-type than Fighting. Then it kicks in that the user is only inflicting more pain onto the opponent if they got hurt, and holding back otherwise; "an eye for an eye," which is something more noble and befitting of the Fighting type.
  • Scrappy is an ability that allows Normal and Fighting type moves to hit Ghost types.
  • Moonlight is most effective while the field is under the effect of harsh sunlight. Makes sense, as moonlight itself is just reflected sunlight.

    Unsorted 
  • The grunts of any criminal organization not having names while other Trainers do, at first, looks like a result of a combination of laziness and a way of keeping anyone from sympathizing with them. Trainers tell you their names (offscreen) so you'll remember them, especially if they want a rematch, Gym Leaders introduce themselves because that's part of their job, and important villains tell you their names mostly out of ego (the same goes for the Scientists working with Team Rocket and Team Galactic), but grunts are just battling to get you to go away and wouldn't want you to know their names because that would make it harder for them to evade law enforcement if they left the team.
    • Alternatively, the scientists have their names sewn onto their coats (like on the pocket). I can't see them telling you their names, but if they had identifiers on their clothing, it would be inevitable.
    • To extend on that, Cipher Peons have the opposite issue — they do give out their names, but only their mouths are exposed. No eyes, no facial features other than their lips, NOTHING! Aside from in-suit registration devices, how the flying fudge is anyone supposed to tell who's who, especially the police? Doubles as Fridge Horror if you think about it long enough.
  • When you get an egg from the Day Care Center, they always say they don't know how it got there. They're saying it because the protagonist is 11 years old — they don't want to talk The Talk to him/her.
    • The talk might be even more awkward since it might have to explain Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action. Also, depending on the context and the possible need for charts with that example, someone might call the cops if you just randomly start talking about those things to random children.
    • Or, in Black and White, they assume that, since you're older, you already know.
    • Alternatively, the day care people really don't know. Pokémon are obviously built differently than animals (Pokémon seem able to withstand more damage without any permanent damage or scarring; all Pokémon apparently have DNA, even inorganic Pokémon such as Porygon, Claydol, and Klink; etc.), so how Pokémon breed is probably different, too. Considering how supposedly no one has ever seen a Pokémon lay an egg, Pokémon breeding might be incomprehensible to humans.
    • Either way, eggs appear from nowhere because Arceus creates all of them with the power from Earth and all its beings. No sex, just a God Pokémon making eggs from scratch every few seconds in every region in the world, even the ones we don't know about yet!
      • And either way — the games never states the Trainers to be exactly 10, that's mostly anime canon. Red and Leaf actually have a confirmed game age, and they're 11 anyway.
      • Building on the Pokémon breeding not being the same as normal animal mating; Ditto can breed with genderless Pokémon (likely by transforming into replicas of the genderless Pokémon), male Pokémon pass down moves through genetics, mothers pass down natures (and fathers in generation V) if they hold items — there seems to be some indication that these Pokémon are breeding through data or some sort of estranged DNA-system that might not be at-all similar to how humans breed. For all we know, it may just be close proximity for extended duration that produces an egg out of thin air in some shining glowing bauble, similar to how Pokémon evolve.
    • Or maybe it's the mechanics beyond Hot Skitty-on-Wailord Action. Do you have any idea how a Chandelier and Sludge can make an egg? Or Rocks for that matter?
  • The PC not being able to run without the Running Shoes. They could be wearing sneakers that weren't designed for extreme outdoor trekking (like toughened soles and tight-latch laces) and were 'consumer-grade' meant for pavement and flooring. Like there's a difference between Hiking Boots, Steel-Toed Boots, and Designer Boots.
    • You're given the ability to run right off the bat in X and Y. You start off with "High Tops" by default, and it's most likely good for running. Although, this theory might be silly, considering you can run with other pairs of footwear that are less pratical like...say, lace-up boots?
    • The characters can run with normal shoes, but the Running Shoes has some electric boogaloo in it that allows wearers to run faster while conserving more energy. In the manga it's shown that when the main character(s) like Diamond put them on and tried to run, they were surprised by the speed. So... there you go, electric shoesgaloo.
  • How trade evolutions could happen in the wild. The experience points you collect after knocking out a Pokémon are electromagnetic waves that Pokémon naturally give off when they lose consciousness. All evolutions, even if they are more metamorphosis, are essentially mutations brought upon by these EM waves. This theory could also be applied to other methods of evolution. The evolutionary stones have already been stated to emit some sort of radiation, which would be on the EM spectrum. Evolutions dependent on location would be because different areas have different electromagnetic resonances.
    • If Pokémon gain experience because of EM waves, then Team Rocket was able to make Pokémon in the Lake of Rage evolve by using radio waves...which are EM waves.
  • Why using an evolutionary stone on the majority of Pokémon caused it to get a huge stat boost, but then made it unable to learn any new moves. These stones "radiate a mysterious energy". The stones radioactivity force the Pokémon to move beyond its normal final stage, into a powerful creature (think about the three-eyed fish from the simpsons), but stunt its growth permanently, which is why they stop learning other than from the TMs! Some Pokémon are better conditioned for this (Isn't Eevee's genetic code already unstable?), which is why they still learn moves, or that the method had been lost to time, or they're unique, which could also be why "area methods" work. How rare is it to find another mossy stone radiating an energy Eevees can use?
  • Why the evil teams back off once you beat them. Imagine Pokémon in a wild west setting. Everyone's got a gun/Pokémon. Everyone is walking around with a revolver hanging off their belt. With a limited amount of bullets. You get in a fight with a baddie and you out shoot them, knocking their gun from their hand or they use up all their bullets. There you are, gun out, bullets loaded, and they have nothing. Gen V establishes that there are no guns, so Pokémon are weapons for evil teams. You have Pokémon at strength and theirs are gone. Would you mess with someone who has just disarmed you and can make you their next target?
    • And how many Pokémon can you carry at once? Six...just like bullets in a standard wild west gun.
  • The levels of wild Pokémon increasing with your travels. It seems like the Pokémon's levels are conveniently rising as you progress, like the Pokémon decided that you'd be fighting them ahead of time and planned their homes with your route in mind. The Pokémon didn't plan their habitat around your travel routes, the travel routes were planned around where the more dangerous Pokémon are. The League likely put the Gyms in order of how dangerous the wildlife in the area was to help travelers train.
    • Even better (at least in Diamond and Pearl) they don't continue going up, so if you take different routes or go back their levels are set, giving credence to this.
    • In Generation V, while the Pokémon encountered while surfing are typically an appropriate level for the route, Pokémon found by fishing are in the upper 50's to lower 60's across the entire region. This is actually not as bad as you think it may be: you only get the fishing rod from a foreign visitor. Maybe fishing is not as widely encouraged/restricted to only capable Trainers because of this high level.
    • Pokémon like to fight, and in Gen IV, we learn that the man who killed Pokémon caused a code of honour of sorts to be formed. Pokémon in traveled areas may have a base code of honour - When they are low level, they are still too young to understand, but would be scared off by your high level mons later. The higher leveled ones, meanwhile, would start coming out, recognizing your strength. Why doesn't it go up in early routes, then? Ignoring the excuse of Gameplay and Story Segregation, it could be that they expect you to also follow this code of honour.
  • In Sinnoh, the two Pokémon Nosepass and Magneton can only evolve into their final forms by being leveled up in Mt. Coronet. In Unova, Chargestone Cave fills this role. Nosepass and Magneton are both associated with magnetism. After all, Magneton is just a bunch of magnets, and Nosepass acts like a compass with its gigantic nose. Mt. Coronet has been explicitly stated to have an unusual magnetic field. Chargestone Cave has floating rocks, so it must also have some interesting magnetic activity.
    • Word of God also states that in the Japanese version, Coronet was Tengam. Or rather magneT. It was just lost in translation.
  • The connection between the three Pokémon that evolve from knowing Ancient Power: Mamoswine looks like a mammoth (obviously), Yanmega is based off a prehistoric dragonfly called the Meganeura, and Tangrowth is based off a caveman!
  • Koga is a Kanto Gym Leader and later in the Johto Elite Four. He specialises in Poison Pokémon, and is a ninja. In Japan, there's group of ninjas that identified as "Koka". Koka ninjas were experts in poison. They are also known as "Koga". Makes his name make more sense.
  • Notice how out of the 5 main series regions, Sinnoh has the harshest environments. Looking at the final evolutions of each starter, it seems as if they were tailor made to be adapted to the harsh environments of the Sinnoh region. Torterra being part ground type (as well as its appearance making it out to look like a rugged Pokémon in general) means that it would be able to traverse rocks and cliffs with ease. Infernape being part fighting type as well as being a monkey would suggest that it would be very agile. This would allow it to climb steep cliffs and allow it to jump across short chasms if necessary. Empoleon is based on a penguin, which means it would be able to cross icy waters without freezing to death, as well as just handling snow and cold temperatures in general. Rowan knows you'll have to cross Mt. Coronet and travel to Snowpoint City at some point in the journey. So he wants to give you a Pokémon that can handle cold, mountainous environments well (Although in Torterra's case, it would at least be able to handle craggy areas well). And look at their secondary typings. What do you encounter mostly in mountains? Rocks. They each have the three types resisting rock, making Torterra and Empoleon resistant to rock and removing Infernape's rock weakness. And of course they can all learn rock climb.
  • Japan got the Red Collection for the TCG, to round out your selection of available Pokémon. Victini is colored red, and it is one of the last Pokémon in the pack. But also, the color red in the Pokémon series...Doesn't it sound familiar?
  • In Black/White, Team Plasma's goal is to separate humans and Pokémon and one way is by making propaganda speeches. Do you know what would be the ultimate counter-propaganda to that? The first American theme song of the Pokémon anime.
  • At first it seems strange that the only Trainer you seem to battle in each generation with a full team is the champion. In each generation, you always encounter the champion long before you battle them. This would seem to indicate that the champion probably has traveled all over the region and has thus been able to obtain a full team. The other Trainers you encounter (including the gym leaders) probably never leave their hometown (except when helping the hero battle the evil team), so they never have time to catch any more Pokémon.
  • NPCs are always telling the player about how much respect and love they have for their Pokémon. This seems a little strange, since the game is about them forcing them to fight other Pokémon for fun and profit. But when their whole party faint, they pass out and wake up in the Pokémon Center. The player has such a strong emotional connection to their team that they literally collapse when they've been hurt too badly. Compared to other Trainers, who stick around and sometimes even make jokes after you defeat their Pokémon, you really are the world's most caring Trainer!
    • Anternatively, when your beloved mons all faint, you go into autopilot and run to the last Pokémon Center you remember going to. No stopping to chat or anything, just mad dashing to save them.
  • The original Pokémon games were originally based on the real world, examples; The origin of Mewtwo was that it was born from a genetic experiment on a Mew which was said to have 'given birth to', they even mention that Mew was found somewhere in South America. Lt Surge is explicitly mentioned that his nationality was American. Plus there's a model Columbia spaceship inside the Pewter Museum which was edited any mentioning of the ship's name itself and just called it a generic spaceship. (There was also the case of the RBY region being called Kanto; named after a real place in Japan)
  • Absol's classification. The Dark type is normally associated with evil, and other Dark-types fit that description, but Absol doesn't, really. It actually tries to warn other people and Pokémon of disaster. Makes sense, however, when you realize the Pokédex was compiled by humans! Even though the Absol were trying to help, the humans creating the Pokédex saw Absol as signs of evil and doom, so of course they would classify it as a Dark type!
    • Alternatively, the Dark-type is basically the Combat Pragmatist of the Pokémon world. Absol is so desperate to prevent the disasters it foresees that it's wiling to fight dirty.
  • Here's one for the Anime and Manga. In the Manga adaption for Black and White, N used a Zekrom. In the Anime adaption of Black and White, N uses Reshiram.
    • Also consider, Ash encountered Zekrom, which is the fate of the heroes who play Pokémon White. Naturally, N gets Reshiram, just like in White.
  • Why do Pokémon obey their Trainers? Maybe, Pokémon are all The Empath and are looking for humans to partner with to gain strength, because they inherently recognize the need for that partnership the same way Dragons do. Battling a wild Pokémon is literally "impressing" them and PokéBalls are usually necessary because they're empathy enhancers! This explains a number of things. It explains why you're usually 10 when you start as a Trainer: it's the earliest age when most people are getting a sense of their empathy AND with puberty coming up their own emotions would be at a volatile point that Pokémon would pick up and probably be more receptive to. It explains why not everyone is a Trainer. Not everyone has the emotional strength to work with Pokémon well. It also explains why some Pokémon evolve by taming. It's not just taming, but a bond with their Trainers. It explains how in the show Pokémon can keep battling after they've taken so much damage: they're tapping in to their Trainers' belief that they can win and borrowing his/her strength. Then there's all the talk of Trainers and Pokémon being in sync with each other, and why Trainers can be so tired and hungry after battles when they haven't done anything. They're bonded to their Pokémon and thus are feeling their fatigue and hunger as their own.
  • Why do Pokémon learn moves earlier if they're unevolved? Well think about baby Pokémon and how unevoled Pokémon usually look more child-like than fully-evolved Pokémon. They are like child versions of their evolved forms and children can learn things easier.
  • There are no Bug Catchers in Unova because bug catching isn't as popular in America as it is in Japan.
  • It took Snorlax six generations to stand up.
  • Considering just how many Pokémon actually have surprisingly dark backgrounds and Pokédex descriptions (most Ghost-types, and a bunch of non-ghosts), who's to say the criminal organizations aren't just Well Intentioned Extremists? We know that Pokémon can be dangerous to humans, and the criminal organizations want to "steal" Pokémon from Trainers (and in the anime even succeed at stealing them from less skilled Trainers). Knowing that Pokémon may attack unworthy Trainers, the criminal organizations might just be trying to keep humans safe from the monsters.
  • Poison Sting seems out of place in Sandshrew's learnset, until you realize that shrews have venomous saliva to some degree.
  • Gengar's shape seemed familiar, didn't it? It's Clefable's shadow — or its corrupted, malevolent ghost!
  • At first, Probopass looks silly. However, this is because it's a restored Moai head, complete with dorky red hat and bulging eyes. As for the mustache? It's a magnetic Pokémon, and it's attracted iron filings.
  • Linoone, the evolution of the raccoon Zigzagoon; remember that Japan has a tendency to mix raccoons, badgers, and raccoon-dogs up a bit.
  • Meditite/Medicham: Their attack is doubled because they hit physically and mentally at the same time.
  • Lt. Surge heavily implies that he killed people with his Electric-type Pokémon in (Fire)Red/Blue(Leaf Green) Versions. The TCG didn't put him in a much better spot.
  • The female grunt uniforms for most of the main Team Badguys are skimpy as Pokémon gets. The leaders of these teams are healthy older gentlemen who are just a little nutty. The exception? Galactic Leader Cyrus, the incredibly repressed shell of a man, who dresses both his ladies and gentlemen in full uniform, complete with long sleeves and high collars, and heavy-looking leggings for the girls. Team Flare Grunts actually avert this trope as well, as the female grunts are dressed very similarly to the male grunts. With the exception of Jupiter, but admins seem to get to choose their own uniforms.
    • Alternatively, the grunt uniforms look like something out of a 1980s music video, and if you go off the release dates of the games, Cyrus would have been born in either 1979 or 1981.
    • The little dresses the female Galactic Grunts wear are actually quite short and tight — if it wasn't for those leggings, they would show quite a bit of skin.
    • Team Plasma grunt uniforms would be along the lines of Rule of Symbolism or Faux Symbolism as they are claiming to be attempting to liberate Pokémon from their unworthy Trainers. What better costume to support this message than that of a crusading Knight in Shining Armor?
    • Evice and Greevil are both old men who likely have ground their sex drives into dust (Greevil, having two sons, can actually claim this as an excuse). Cipher Peons are dressed head to toe in Stormtrooper armor, even their faces.
  • The Pokédex seems incredibly inaccurate and generally over-the-top to the point of unrealism. Which would make sense, considering that Professor Oak got a bunch of 11-year-olds to fill the Pokédex for him!
    • The Pokédex makes even more sense once you realise that the descriptions given in it aren't cataloguing facts about the Pokémon, but myths, beliefs, and urban legends about them. Yamask isn't really the spirit of a dead human, Spoink doesn't die if it stops bouncing, Cubone's skull helmet isn't actually the skull of its dead mother, and Electrodes don't absorb so much electricity from lightning that they all start Exploding — no, that's just people believing that to be the source of the delayed boom from lightning.
  • In most games, very few people will recognize your achievements for saving the region from the villainous team, or winning the Pokémon League. This starts to get downplayed from Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, which more people recognize you as the Champion, and with Pokémon X and Y, which throws a huge parade for you. This can be partially attributed to gameplay script issues being progressively addressed, but it's also worth noting the cultures of the real-life equivalent of said regions. The Black/White series are based in the United States, with X and Y based on France. The rest of the main games are based in Japan. What is a proverb in Japan showing the prevalent mentality of the Japanese, that is relatively discouraged (though can still exist) for the Americans and the French? "A stake sticking out will be struck down."
  • Later generations, starting around the Gen. VI Hoenn/Kanto Remakes, featured move tutors and move relearners, in addition to the move deleter from the previous generation. The tutors and relearners can teach Pokémon moves that they used to know or can learn at later stages. However, they are more utilized to teach moves that are not part of the normal move set or even a part of their hidden move set (look at the moves that starter Pokémon can "remember" from the relearner after reaching their final stage of evolution). Combine this with the complaints about Lance's Dragon Pokémon having illegal moves and the possibility of getting a Extreme Speed Dratini from the Dragon's Den in HGSS. This could imply that there are other move tutors in the world of Pokémon that can teach Pokémon moves they would not naturally know. However, they probably treat their methods as secret and only pass on the knowledge and techniques to worthy students or successors.
  • The addition of PokéMarts into the Pokémon Centers may have been meant to explain why Pokémon Centers don't expect pay—they get all their funding from the purchases made at the marts! (This is even more so for Pokémon Centers in Alola, which also have coffee shops and therefore make even more money.)
    • Alternatively, the Pokemon centers were free before Poké Marts were incorporated into them because they were initially provided as a public service by the government.
  • When looking at characteristics, the fact that the one for the highest IV being a potentially maxed(31) Speed IV is "Alert to sounds" might seem odd at first glance, especially since an IV of 30 nets the more logical sounding "Likes to run" and an IV of 29 nets "Quick to flee". However, it's generally accepted among the fanbase that the speed stat actually refers to reflexes and reaction time in battle rather than the actual max speed a Pokémon can reach(explaining why some Pokémon with low base speed, such as Escavalier, are said to fly around at high speeds in the Pokédex—such Pokémon could just take a really long time to accelerate). With this in mind, "Alert to sounds" could mean the Pokémon is quicker to react to such noises, hence a max speed IV.
  • On the subject of characteristics, most of them have a common theme with their stat:
    • Most of the HP characteristics revolve around resting, a common way to restore health in video games, with the max IV being "Takes plenty of siestas". One of the outliers is "Loves to eat", and eating is another common healing method. (Can't answer where "Scatters things often" comes into play with this theme, though. Maybe it's an idiom that didn't translate well?)
    • The Attack characteristics describe the Pokémon as being very physically active, with the max IV being "Likes to thrash about", indicating some pent-up energy.
    • The Defense characteristics describe the Pokémon being physically tanky, either literally(e.g. the max IV of "Capable of taking hits") or via Heroic Resolve (e.g. "Good perseverance").
    • The Special Attack characteristics are mostly themed around intelligence—mental strength rather than physical. The max IV is "Mischievous"—any prankster will tell you that you have to be pretty smart to get away with such things. The theme is supported by the fact that the Wing that boosts Special Attack is called the Genius Wing and Pokémon with high Special Attack tending to have high Skill in HeartGold and SoulSilver's Pokéathon
    • The Special Defense characteristics are themed around stubbornness and pride, with the max IV being "Somewhat vain." If Special Attack is the mental counterpart to Attack, then Special Defense is the mental counterpart to Defense.
    • The Speed characteristics are a bit more varied—two of them are based around the Pokémon being silly, two of them are based on the Pokémon liking to go fast, and the last one is the above described "Alert to sounds". It's more of a stretch, but if Speed really is reaction speed, then the Pokémon could just be acting on first impulse with the situation without stopping to think if the reaction is appropriate.
  • The Nanab Berry's (Nana no Mi in Japanese) flavor text says that it was the seventh to be discovered in the world. Why? Because Seven Is Nana!
  • In real life, it would be possible for the player character from Pokemon X and Y on to have a mother regardless of their skin, hair, and eye color, both because the player character's father is unidentified and because all of the physical traits typically associated with lighter-skinned people are recessive. The physical characteristics of the player character which vary from those of his or her mother are easily accounted for by the physical characteristics of the player character's unseen father which are to some extent left to the imagination.
  • Several Pokémon in the Team Rocket TCG expansion are significantly under-leveled, but the most egregious example would be Dark Dragonite, which is at level 33 - yes, even lower than Lance's level 40 Dragonite from HeartGold and SoulSilver. Think about it, they're serving under Team Rocket. It's very likely that at least some, if not most, of them would be illegal and therefore under-leveled.
  • With the confirmation that the Pokemon games take place in a multiverse (or collection of parallel timelines, whatever the difference is), this explains any questions between the originals and the remakes. However, this also explains every discrepancy between the world as depicted in the games and the anime. In that timeline, that's completely accurate! Finally, an answer to the debate over whether Pokémon Speak actually exists or not!
  • There is a official book called "Pokedex" that was published in Japan in 1996 but took until 2021 to be translated into English by fans. This book contains an extended Pokedex, as well as a lot of other Pokémon lore, much of which is clearly no-longer canon (such as extensive mentions of real-world locations, and Pokémon appearing only 2 million years ago), but it does shine a light on certain things. For instance, the book mentions that Nidoran female becomes infertile upon evolution for unknown reasons, despite the male's evolutions all retaining fertility, meaning that something almost the whole fandom thought was the result of a bug or oversight turned out to be something done intentionally to adapt the lore of this book.
  • Yes, we all know that Pokémon want to fight before joining the party so they can test you, but what are they looking for, exactly? Well, it's simple: They want to see if you're better than them. Whether you have the smarts to outwit them, the skill to train your other mons to surpass them, or even just the technology to handle them, the heart of the matter is that they're assessing your competence as a trainer, and won't travel with anyone that's weaker than they are. This guarantees all relationships will be mutually beneficial: They get the benefits of your tutelage and technology, and guarantee that you won't be overwhelmed by their power and your skills won't stagnate out of overreliance on them, while also offering you their aid. Don't want the little kid who likes pretty lights to have free access to Hyper Beam before they know not to just spam it everywhere so everyone can enjoy the pretty lights with them, right?
  • Long ago, when Sinnoh had just been made, Pokémon and humans led separate lives. That is not to say they did not help each other. No, indeed they did. They supplied each other with goods, and supported each other. A Pokémon proposed to the others to always be ready to help humans. It asked that Pokémon be ready to appear before humans always. Thus, to this day, Pokémon appear to us if we venture into tall grass. This entry can be found in the Canalave Library, and explains the whole thing. They appear out of kindness.

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Fridge Horror

    General 
  • Pretty much everything about the premise of Pokémon is horrific. The whole story is about enslaving sentient creatures and forcing them to take part in gladiatorial contests for our entertainment. The fact that some of them do get eaten adds to the fridge horror, but honestly there is nothing really nice about that society...
    • Note that Pokémon are G-Rated Blood Knights.
    • The core fridge horror of all Pokémon games, white-washed for the sake of being kid-friendly, is that Pokémon can and do attack people who are not Trainers. With potentially terrible results. They are Pocket MONSTERS, after all. Remember back in Gen I, when Oak comes rushing in when you try to venture into the grass? Does that not come off like an adult trying to stop a kid from sticking a fork in a wall socket?
    • Pokémon basically has a version of the Yu-Gi-Oh problem; the franchise generally lacks the worldbuilding to incorporate the idea that these monsters can and do cause effects in the world they live in. Pokémon have incredibly violent powers that are primarily designed to cause damage, so we could argue that (leading back into Brilliance above), the League and Trainers exist to prevent Pokémon from causing too much damage to themselves or the environment around them. Also, the only enslavement argument really valid is in the use of the Master Ball, which automatically forces a capture (note: we never really learn the nature of the conversation between Giovanni and the Silph Chief; was it a contract dispute that Giovanni was trying to settle with a show of force?), and you could possibly make an argument even for that (if you felt ballsy enough) as a weapon of last-resort.
    • One issue is that Pokémon almost always require fighting in order to catch. These things will fight to stay free until they fall unconscious, yet after they are captured they suddenly out of the blue are more than willing to do what the Trainer says 9 times out of 10. True, some Pokémon refuse to obey their Trainers, but they don't attempt to escape again. The whole thing definitely sounds like brainwashing or Stockholm Syndrome or something along those lines.
  • Pokémon are creatures with dangerous powers, and their Trainers are usually children. What happens if a Pokémon doesn't like its Trainer and turns those powers on it? Incinerated, crushed, stabbed, drowned...
    • If the anime is anything to go by, Pokémon attacks seem to be very painful, but not that harmful. Plenty of characters have been shown to be attacked and while they didn't enjoy it and came out hurt, they all survived it with no long-term injury. The games also never really mention cases about Pokémon or humans killed by Pokémon, injuries do happen though.
    • It is also entirely possible that the humans on that particular world are made of much tougher stuff than their real world counterpart. House cats generally have same behavior as tigers, but they are not considered harmful simply because they can't seriously hurt humans.
  • Catch a common Pokémon (a Rattata, for example) and train it in that same area against others of its kind. Chances are, you're PITTING YOUR POKEMON AGAINST ITS FAMILY AS THEY TRY TO STOP YOU FROM CATCHING THEIR LOVED ONE!!!!
    • Another fridge horror idea. Wild Pokemon gotta breed and have families too. Capture a Pokemon and then take it off to help you win battles. You may have taken a baby away from their parents or a parent away from their mate and children. ''And they may never see each other again.''
    • Dr. Footstep in Diamond, Pearl and Platinum will, at a certain friendship level, mention your Pokémon saying thisnote  "Some wild Pokémon frown upon others for traveling with humans. They jeer that the caught Pokémon have "forgotten the wild." But that view is mistaken. They have just never met a Trainer who could be a great partner. A great partner like [Player Name Here], in other words..." which lends some credence to the "wild Pokémon dislike Pokémon with Trainers"-theory from the anime.
  • At 10 years old in the Pokemon universe, you are legally an adult, with everything that entails. Now imagine a world where naive 10-year-olds meet up with people much older and more...experienced than they are.
  • In a World… where even stepping into the tall grass is dangerous (and therefore highly discouraged without being accompanied by at least one Pokemon), EMS doesn't seem to exist. Even in a major city like Viridian. To put it in perspective: imagine that you get to the Pokemon gym of a major city, and as you walk in, you find seven people sprawled out on the floor. You don't know why they are there, or what caused it, or if whoever or whatever caused it is still there to potentially harm you. You can't tell just by looking if any of these people are breathing or have a pulse. (And you're not skilled or trained in first aid (beyond, say, applying a bandage), so you have no idea how to check for a pulse, for example, much less perform CPR.) Despite the fact that you have the ability to video-chat with your mom, turn living creatures into light energy to be stored in a tiny ball, and send said balls to the professor or a Pokemon Center remotely, you don't have a cell phone to call for help even if it does exist, and Arceus knows where the nearest Pay Phone is. And that's just in a major city; imagine how much worse this already terrible situation would be if you happen to be out in the wilderness, many kilometers away from the nearest town or city? How many people have died because they couldn't get emergency help for themselves or their Pokemon?
  • Why are shiny Pokemon so rare? If they're anything like the color mutations of animals in the real world, then it may be because their unique and sparkly colors likely make them easy pickings for predators...

    Moves 
  • How about the fact that almost, if not every Pokémon can learn the move Toxic? Does the Pokémon vomit on the opponent? ewwwwww...
    • Alternatively, they just naturally secrete poison. For example, the first Mega-Evolution special has Chespin use Toxic through the spikes on it's head.
  • Vacuum Wave is a Fighting type move, so its not very effective against Flying types. But a move that sucks the air away from you should screw you over if you're airborne.
    • Vacuum wave does not suck air, it send "pure vacuum" at the opponent. It is a reference to Street Fighter, specifically the sinku hadoken (though given that is a slow strong charge up move and this is a quick weak priority one...)
  • Solarbeam is an absolutely terrifying move if you think about it. A Pokémon absorbs solar radiation into its body and fires it as a concentrated energy beam which could cause who knows how much destruction. From a level 5 Bulbasaur, it would only give a nasty sun burn and set plants on fire. From a level 40 Venasaur, it could cause third degree burns, near instant skin cancer and vaporize most plants. From a level 100 Primal Groudon? Death rays that can cause Nuclear Armageddon or worse.
  • Classification and effects of some moves in Contests are a little disturbing, but probably the worst is Frustration. This move is stronger if Pokémon dislikes his Trainer... and is classified in Contests as cute move. Basically, Pokémon thinks about his Trainer, about all abuse and neglect from him, about how powerless he is to do anything about it, and just thinking is enough to make him ram everything on his path in a blind fury. And judges find it CUTE! Just what kind of monsters are they!?
    • Given that it's being used in a Contest, a Pokemon using Frustration wouldn't need to put actual fury into it, so long as they're visibly throwing something akin to a temper tantrum.

    Abilities 
  • The abilities Insomnia and Vital Spirit render the Pokémon unable to fall asleep. But it's not limited to the enemy attacks, as the Pokémon can't go to sleep even if it uses a sleep-inducing move on itself! Are they actually unable to sleep altogether...?
    • Insomnia is only held by Pokèmon who are nocturnal (Hoothoot, Murkrow, etc.), so their sleeping pattern would be off compared to other Pokèmon. Vital Spirit is held by rambunctious fighting types who don't dare fall asleep - they want to fight too badly.

    Unsorted 
  • A ton of battles in the anime and in the games have Pokémon getting knocked out. Obviously to a child this is bad, but not necessarily devastating. The Pokémon's just going to sleep as far as they know. But once you learn more about health and anatomy you realize that these Pokémon are taking hits serious enough to knock them unconscious. In other words, it is entirely possible for the majority of human-owned to be suffering from brain damage, internal bleeding and major damage to their organs because they live in a world with irresponsible Trainers and a healthcare system of one girl and a few Chansey's per town. And that's not even getting into the long term affects of being repeatedly poisoned, burned and electrocuted. It's a wonder if the Pokémon you have will make it past their equivalent to middle age.
  • In most games, whenever you go the the Pokémon Center to heal up, Nurse Joy responds "We hope to see you again!" Seems like an odd thing to say, doesn't it? Well, let's consider that you are of primary school-age (secondary school-age in some games) out on your own in a nigh-on Death World under constant fire by massive criminal organizations, each with a special plan for this world. It's at this point one realizes: Nurse Joy hopes to see you again because, to be frank, it shows her you're still alive.
  • Villain teams would instantly surrender to a ten year old boy after losing a simple sporting creature duel. After taking down all their Pokémon, who's gonna be your level 38 Charizard's next target if they don't surrender? Now consider the potential innocent irresponsibility of a child!
    • In the Johto games, Lance orders his Lv. 40. Dragonite to use Hyper Beam on a Rocket Grunt. Of course, being hit by THAT would probably be enough to send someone flying through a wall, and probably break quite a few things in their body- But the Grunt is only sent flying across the room and seems to only somewhat hurt when you talk to him. In other words, the Trainer can make their Pokémon limit the power when they use it. The horror in a naïve child's potential misuse of this and the power of this in the wrong hands (Example: B2/W2 with Ghetsis outright attacking the player character with Kyurem) still stands, though.
  • Breeding is seriously screwed up in these games. You can force a baby Pokémon to breed moments after its birth, often with a member of its own family.
  • PokéBalls are a form of power limiters, which goes to explain things like Team Rocket blasting off harmless. However wild Pokémon wouldn't have those limiters. Suddenly Professor Birch's "cowardice" is a lot more understandable. This'd also be Fridge Brilliance for why the Dex "exaggerates"(and Fridge Heartwarming that the wild Pokémon doesn't attack a fainted Trainer.)
  • Baby Pokémon that you only get if the parent is holding incense. Think about it, without that drug being present the infant is born as a fully-fledged member of its species, but due to the presence of the incense at conception it is born in a smaller form that becomes the main Pokémon. Incense forces Pokémon to give birth to premature babies.
  • In Pokémon Black and White, Unova's resident literal poison mushrooms are Foongus and Amoongus, toadstool-like Pokémon whose caps look like Poké Balls (and are identical to them in the overworld). According to the Pokédex, these are meant to lure in prey. Also according to the Pokédex, wild Pokémon rarely fall for it, because of freaking course they do. Why would a wild Pokémon seek out and approach Pokéballs? But there must be a reason why those caps developed the way they did, right? They very clearly have survived this far with this gimmick, so there must be something in the Pokémon world that actually falls for the trap regularly. So, let's think: What or who wanders through forests and fields, actively grabbing anything remotely shaped like a PokéBa- oh. Oh dear...
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