Above: Surprised Pikachu (https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/surprised-pikachu)
Above: so i herd u like mudkips (https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/i-herd-u-liek-mudkips)
Above: Too much water (https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/too-much-water)
Hello readers! Today, I thought I would share some memes that are relevant to Pokémon. Some of you may already be familiar with these memes, especially Surprised Pikachu. These memes relate to the Pokémon community as they bridge the gap between the video games we play and internet humor. Whether or not you’ve seen these memes before, make sure to keep on reading!
The first meme in the stack, Surprised Pikachu, is derived from a screenshot of the Pokémon anime. According to Know Your Meme, the screenshot is taken from Season 1, Episode 10, titled “Bulbasaur and the Hidden Village.” The first time the image was used was on Tumblr in late 2018, where user popokko used it as a reaction. The meme then spread to other platforms in 2018, including on Reddit and Facebook. Eventually, the meme hit Twitter, where it is still occasionally used in reaction memes.1
The second meme in the stack is “so i herd u like mudkips,” which orginated on 4chan in the mid-2000s. The deviantArt group known as MudKipClub would post the phrase “so i herd u like mudkips” on comment walls all over the platform, possibly as an inviation to join the club. The meme then evolved into a copypasta story thoughout 2005 and 2006, culminating in the story being added to the copypasta archive in 2010. The meme then returned to relevance for a short period of time when YouTube user TehN1ppe posted this video2:
The third meme in the stack is known as “Too much water.” The meme originates from an IGN review of Pokemon Alpha Sapphire version. In the review, IGN cites the high amount of water routes as a drawback of the game. Because the original Sapphire version is viewed as a classic in the Pokemon community, IGN recieved backlash for calling out what seemed to be insignificant part of the game. The “Too much water” statement then evolved to be used in memes posted Reddit, 4chan, YouTube, and Tumblr3:
“Manifestations” of a meme refer to how a meme is used on online platforms4. In the case of Surprised Pikachu, the meme is used as reaction to a surprising scenario, but in an ironic sense. In the case of “so i herd u like mudkips,” the meme was used as a copypasta and evolved to YouTube memes. In the case of “Too much water,” the meme was used as an inside joke in the Pokémon community to poke fun at IGN. Here are some manifestations of these memes:
According to Patrick Davison, “The ideal of a meme is the aggregate of all manifestations of that meme.”5 The ideal of the Surprised Pikachu meme is to provide a lighthearted, funny picture appended to a reaction to surprising scenario, either real or made up. The ideal of “so i herd u like mudkips” is using the phrase to appreciate the cuteness of the starter Pokémon Mudkip, sometimes in inappropriate ways. The ideal of “Too much water” is poking fun at IGN, a company that fans think is unqualified to give objective reviews on video games.
I think the manifestations, behaviors, and ideals of these memes help the Pokémon community interact with each other, as players of the main series games can bond over internet humor. These memes also bridge the gap between hardcore Pokémon fans and internet users that are just looking to have a laugh.
Thanks for reading! For now, I’ll leave you with a meme some of you may recognize–its an oldie but a goodie!
Advice Oak (https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/professor-oak-advice-oak)
1This paragraph derives from: Adam, & Zach. (2018). Surprised Pikachu. Know Your Meme. Retrieved December 10, 2022, from https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/surprised-pikachu
2This paragraph derives from: Dubs, J., & ohmyjosh. (2022, October 5). I herd U liek mudkips. Know Your Meme. Retrieved December 10, 2022, from https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/i-herd-u-liek-mudkips
3This paragraph derives from: MediExcalibur2012, & Y F. (2022, November 21). Too much water. Know Your Meme. Retrieved December 10, 2022, from https://knowyourmeme.com/memes/too-much-water
4The definition of manifestation in this context derives from: Davison, P. (2012). The language of internet memes. The social media reader, 120-134.
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