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Pokemon- Serious Business [roundtable]
 
It’s that time of year again- the snow is melting, the birds are coming back, and the new Pokémon games are out! Who doesn’t love Pokémon? You hear about Black Ops being in one in eight households… BLACK OPS AIN’T GOT S*** ON POKÉMON!!!!1!!1!

*Ahem*

While I haven’t played Black and White (waiting for Gray), it seems that one of the best things about this generation is its story. Team Plasma, a group of Pokémon activists, wants to keep humans from catching Pokémon. On the latest episode of the Nintendo Voice Chat podcast, this spurred a debate. Is it ethical to catch and battle Pokémon?

One of the points they made on the podcast was that when you look at a Pokémon like Gardevoir, you’re basically ordering a human to battle for you. Humanoid Pokémon are all over the place.


Can you spot five differences between these two pictures?

Now, this raises another question. If there are Pokémon that are just as intelligent as humans, how did humans become the dominant species in the Pokémon world? According to the Pokémon creation stories, Arceus created the Pokémon world and everything in it. It’s also been suggested that Pokémon and humans were once the same species, and that nearly all Pokémon evolved from Mew.

Humans can’t use flamethrower. They can’t use scary face either. They can’t even use freakin’ string shot. Humans are basically the worst Pokémon- and yet they’re the ones giving the orders. Obviously, this is because they’re the ones with the Pokeballs. But how were humans the first species to create Pokeballs? You would think that, say, Alakazam- who have an IQ of 5,000- would have done it long before humans. You could argue that Alakazam can’t exist naturally, because they only evolve after being traded, but there are plenty of other likely Pokémon that could have done it.

So what do you think? Is it ethical to catch and battle Pokémon? Does it even make sense for humans to be the dominant species in a world with Pokémon?

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Posted: 03/21/11, 03:05:15  - Edited by 
 on: 03/21/11, 03:05:48
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Just 'cuz.


Yeah, the Pokemon universe doesn't make much sense in light of how extremely powerful Pokemon are. But, is there ever any death in Pokemon? Maybe humans are nigh indestructible dickheads, and Pokemon are all little-Buddha-warriors that find their zen in combat and wanting to make everybody else happy in doing so.
Posted: 03/21/11, 03:15:35  - Edited by 
 on: 03/21/11, 03:23:09
Because Pokemans like being with humans (except when they're bastards like Team Rocket, of course), they like battling for them, being their friends, spending time with them, and I guess they don't mind being in Pokeballs. They don't think of themselves as slaves, they think of themselves as partners. Battling's what they do, and they follow their owners' commands because they trust them.

someone hasnt seen the ending of Black/White lol

And to continue your point, Arceus created the freakin universe. But still, Pokemon like the relationship they have with humans. This question wasn't first raised in Black/White, Mewtwo believed humans were BS and thought Pokemon should take over in the first movie. The Pokemon didn't agree with him.
Posted: 03/21/11, 03:19:47  - Edited by 
 on: 03/21/11, 03:22:17
GelatinousEncore said:
Because Pokemans like being with humans (except when they're bastards like Team Rocket, of course), they like battling for them, being their friends, spending time with them, and I guess they don't mind being in Pokeballs. They don't think of themselves as slaves, they think of themselves as partners. Battling's what they do, and they follow their owners' commands because they trust them.

Only after they're caught. You're right, I haven't seen the ending to B/W. But (a lot of) wild Pokemon don't love humans. Before they're caught, they're either a. wild animals or b. sub-humans.
Posted: 03/21/11, 03:37:08
Secret_Tunnel said:
Humans can’t use flamethrower. They can’t use scary face either. They can’t even use freakin’ string shot. Humans are basically the worst Pokémon- and yet they’re the ones giving the orders.

Humans are like Ditto or Smeargle. One move only. "Battle Order"

Whether the move succeeds or fails depends on the uh...skill of the trainer etc etc (hence disobedient Pokeymans ).
Posted: 03/21/11, 03:38:53
Lol you should play B/W. The whole theme of the storyline is basically based on whether using Pokemon to battle is right or wrong. The put up some serious questions and the characters and people in the game really start to wonder if what they're doing is wrong.

Though in the end most of the characters are drawn either one way or another, so its kind of a..... *puts on sunglasses*.......... black & white subject.


As for the Alakazam thing, sometimes you just have to willingly suspend your disbelief and remember




.... its just a video game.
Posted: 03/21/11, 03:51:26  - Edited by 
 on: 03/21/11, 03:53:29
It's pretty funny. In Blue/Red it was pretty clear that these were creatures that were caught and used for battle. No more, no less.

I feel that Black/White gets a little schmultzy when every third NPC says something along the lines of "Pokemon are so friendly when they're together with humans!"

Or something like...

"A Pokemon is so happy when a Pokeball smashes it in the head and traps it. You can hear it thank you with love!"

I think they laid it on a little too thick, personally. Overall however, it was the best Pokemon story for sure.
Posted: 03/21/11, 04:16:31
I don't know. I guess my only real guess would be that humans have guns. Lots and lots of guns. Either that, or humans could easily use their captured Pokemon to fight the smart Pokemon. In the games, they do whatever they tell you to do if you've captured them (unless their level's too high, lol).

Wasn't this basically the first movie though? Mewtwo is way too smart and powerful and he wants to take over the world? So it's kind of been addressed before?
Posted: 03/21/11, 04:47:55
I haven't played Black/White yet, but Heart Gold is hammering the shit out of the entire "friendship" concept. Your rival is some punkass douche who just "abuses" Pokemon and loses at every other turn, while apparently you are this charming lad (I'm a boy, damn you Elm!!!) who gets the most out of his Pokemon. It's been pretty annoying to have this concept introduced, not sure if it was there way back when though.

I know in the show they tried to make it ethical, but when you look at it you are snatching these creatures from the wild (think of the children!!!!) and then forcing them to do battle for your own selfish gains (I will be the greatest!). So, it's not ethical. We are all demons destroying wildlife and the families and lives they established and use anything and everything as a stepping stone to better ourselves!

Just think of all those times you forced a Pokemon to use one last move before it was "fainted". You could have used a Potion. You could have switched it out. Hell, you could have been nice and not stolen it from its happy little forest and forced it to fight a fire dragon. But you didn't.
Posted: 03/21/11, 04:59:23  - Edited by 
 on: 03/21/11, 05:01:46
PogueSquadron said:
Wasn't this basically the first movie though? Mewtwo is way too smart and powerful and he wants to take over the world? So it's kind of been addressed before?

But why was Mewtwo the first Pokemon to think of that? The only explanation is that Pokemon are naturally disposed to love humans and want to obey them, and that Mewtwo didn't follow that rule because he's a genetically altered clone. Humans don't follow that rule either- yet they hated Mewtwo for wanting to be a Pokemon trainer. If Mewtwo hadn't been so malevolent, there would be nothing wrong with it.
Posted: 03/22/11, 00:33:07
@autokymatic

Death is in Pokemon, just not portrayed in the actual battles. There's quite a few trainers throughout the games who mention this, the various "Pokemon Towers" (Mt. Pyre in Ru/Sa) dedicated to deceased Pokemon... one prominent trainer in B/W had a Pokemon die (IIRC) and as such has been wandering since then.

I don't think it's necessarily immoral or wrong to have Pokemon battle, although it's an interesting question to be raised and B/W is the first in the series to actively ask if it is in-story.

@Dillo64

LOL @ Alakazam! Thus why humans dominate.
Posted: 03/23/11, 00:15:56  - Edited by 
 on: 03/23/11, 00:16:16
This two consecutive Super Effective comic strips are strangely fitting to this thread:

Posted: 03/23/11, 01:47:37  - Edited by 
 on: 03/23/11, 01:47:54
Pokemon like being with humans? Like being controlled by and working for humans? After being ripped from their natural habitat, captured after beatings and harsh status effects, all without consent? Then forced into a life of indentured servitude, transported in cramped quarters? Given medical treatment only at the state run free clinic? Being bred like studs to ensure a supply of healthy stock? Being subjected to elemental effect after elemental effect just to see what causes massive damage?

These are the same things white people said... about SLAVES.



That's right. I went there.
Posted: 03/23/11, 02:33:39  - Edited by 
 on: 03/23/11, 16:15:57
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