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 American Reflections 
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Since the new games are apparently based on New York, it may be appropriate to consider the ways in which the games exhibit references to American culture, ecology or any other aspects of the rather strange land in which my body appears to reside.
Here are a few:
Victini- the liberty ticket event pokemon is almost definitely a nod at the American idea of independence, its typing may even point to the torch in the statue of liberty, a New York land mark
The trash pokemon- these may be a sideways joke about American materialism and pollution
There are obvious nods in the direction of the Native American cultures in Wargle, the vultures, and the buffalo
Pidove is very appropriate to New York, no?
Alligators, groundhogs, cacti, lamprey, deer and little green men from outer space are all native to America
Many of the other creatures are not necessarily US citizens, but still native to the Americas:leaf cutter ants, anteaters, polar bears, and chinchillas.

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Sat Feb 05, 2011 6:52 am
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I think you're misusing the word "native" in some cases because extraterrestrials and polar bears, other than the very northern tip of Alaska, are not native to America whatsoever. There are most definitely concepts that are more common in America or that reflect American culture more than Japan and its culture, though, like the inclusion of American football players. And... well... the existence of black characters in general since there wasn't a single one in the Pokemon series before BW. Eagles are also the symbol of America and Braviary's color scheme just makes things more obvious.

I don't like that people are running with this "Unova is based on New York" theory. MAYBE Castelia City, sure. But I live in NY and we certainly don't have massive deserts sitting just north of a huge city.

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Sat Feb 05, 2011 7:08 am
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@OP: By "little green men" are you referring to Reuniclus and his preevos?? I was thought that it was based off of atoms/molecules, but I could be wrong.

Unova seems to be more of a, "How much American stuff can we cram into a small area?" kind of thing. As Frost said, it's more likely that solely Castelia city is based off of New York. However, some might argue that deserts are possible like how Hoenn had deserts, but it's real-life counterpart doesn't (as far as I know; correct me if I'm wrong). So, I don't really have much belief in the "Unova is New York" theory, but still believe it's a possibility.

I find it ironic that the karate pokemon are in the American region. Maybe it reflects our obsession with fighting, or just martial arts in general?? For sure I've seen way more Kung Fu and Karate movies here than in Japan.

We also have the industrial worker Pokemon in Timburr and his evos. Maybe shows how industiralized we are, or something along those lines.

However, between the starters and several other notable Pokemon (such as Darmanitan), I kinda feel like only the setting is meant to be American. The creators said that this was meant to show both Western and Oriental cultures, so maybe we could also discuss how some Pokemon reflect other cultures? I mean, Daruma dolls are in no way, shape, or form American, so I thought I'd just throw that out there.

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Last edited by rex09 on Sun Feb 06, 2011 1:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Sat Feb 05, 2011 11:53 am
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@ rex09- I am not referring to Reuniclus, but to the alien Pokemon Elgyem (L.G.M.- little green men) and its evolution. In calling them "native" I am exaggerating, but America does have a tradition in alien sightings- Roswell, area 51 and all that. You are right, there are many non-American influences in these games (in addition to your daruma dolls there are gothic lolita and Egyptian sarcophagus Pokemon), but they only add to the American theme of "the great melting pot"- a blend of cultures created by repeated immigration, and these aspects are just as important, if not more so. As long as industrialism is discussed, Klink and its evos are great candidates for this role.

@ Frost- Thank you for correcting me, the new region isn't as similar to New York as any of the regions are to their Japanese counterparts. rex09 does, however, make a point- even when the map is very distinctly based on a real world location, it is generally greatly changed to make the region more interesting- even adding unrealistic things like random whirlpools and choppy, directional currents that must be overcome for the sake of travel. Also, I didn't notice the symbolism of Braviary's colors, thanks for pointing it out.

There is very little that can be said, for certain, about these games until they are out in America and we can see how the various parts interact, but there are a few things that don't seem to have any real world correlations- the magnetic cave, for one.

As to the starters: sea otters and sea lions live off the western coast of America, Snivy may be based on the skink family of lizards (as opposed to being a snake), in which the legs can be vestigial or nonexistent, and which are found worldwide. The basis of Tepig and kin is not American, as the closest living organism to them is the red river hog which is native to Africa.

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Sun Feb 06, 2011 10:11 am
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We could honestly spend YEARS disscusing what influenced what pokemon. For me personally, I cant really say anything on "unova looks like new york" or "this city looks like new york" because

A} I dont have the game yet (1 MONTH!!!)
B} I have never been to New York, so I dont know what it looks like to begin with.

The pokemon on the other hand are a different story. Some pokemon you can look at at say "They are influcned by _______" and have hundreds of people agre wit hor disagree with you.

Is it possible to say that nintendo is tryingto give the pokemon games a more, um, lets say "western feeL' to them? Maybe.

All in all pokemon are gonna be influcend by SOMETHING. To sit around and try to figure out what they are based off of, and have EVERYONE agree with you is gonna be a hrad task indeed.

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Sun Feb 06, 2011 4:42 pm
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@UndeadKevin: Oh, I see that now. The melting-pot theory also makes sense, imo. America was built off of immigration, so it only stands to reason that it reflects the cultures it originates from. Makes sense. But with the starters, it's more their decoration and function (in the case of Oshawott's final evo being able to take the shell off of his head and use it as a sword) that shows it's influence.

@GofD: Sure, with the previous generations. But how anyone could disagree with Braviary not being based on the bald eagle escapes me (just as an example). And the New York thing we're talking about he maps of Unova and New York, compared side by side. I reference this thread to show what we're talking about.

Also, I was thinking about Baffuron's awesome 'do. Where else but America could you find such a thing? :p

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Sun Feb 06, 2011 6:04 pm
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O.o Oshawott's final evo can take off its horn? I've never heard that before. That is quite interesting, and it makes a lot of sense considering the "swordsman" theme that affects the family. Go, Oshawott. Indeed, as you say, rex09, it is frequently the decoration that makes the starter. (Venusaur anyone? Is it an amphibian or a reptile? Without its plant, it is an ambiguous cold blooded animal)

@GofD- Yes, only time can really tell, and even then it tends to be ambiguous, but I still find it interesting to make guesswork of such things. If that is not a good enough reason, why play video games at all?

@ rex09- Baffuron's, as you put it, "do" is indeed quite a beautiful work of cultural inclusion, likely based on the Afro, a popular '60s hairstyle, that is still worn today.

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Thu Feb 10, 2011 5:00 am
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Daikenki's horn actually isn't removable.

However, it does have two swords (the top section with the spike attached) sheathed in the plates on its front legs.

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Thu Feb 10, 2011 1:10 pm
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Flaming_Wuzzle wrote:
Daikenki's horn actually isn't removable.

However, it does have two swords (the top section with the spike attached) sheathed in the plates on its front legs.

Oh, my bad. But the fact that he still has swords of some sort is pretty awesome :). and I think that Oshawott's shell is removable (well, pretty sure, anyway...).

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Thu Feb 10, 2011 2:47 pm
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rex09 wrote:
Flaming_Wuzzle wrote:
Daikenki's horn actually isn't removable.

However, it does have two swords (the top section with the spike attached) sheathed in the plates on its front legs.

Oh, my bad. But the fact that he still has swords of some sort is pretty awesome :). and I think that Oshawott's shell is removable (well, pretty sure, anyway...).

Yep, every member of the Oshawott line has some sort of removable weapon. Oshawott has the shell on its chest, Futachimaru has the two shells near its hips, and Daikenki has the aforementioned swords.

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Thu Feb 10, 2011 4:05 pm
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