5 Pokémon Names Explained!

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Another video, who would have thought it? It’s time for another ramble with Patrick while the video uploads and processes, I know you all love these! So this video isn’t about a country, neither was the last one. When I first made this channel the first few videos happened to be about the origins of names of countries. Perhaps some of you thought that’s all the channel was going to be. All names are game on the channel and not all names have historical, geographical, or scientific explanations, and that’s okay. Don’t worry though countries will return!

“8bit Dungeon Level”, “Beach Party”, “Black Bird”, “Daily Beetle”, “Fig Leaf Times Two”, “Kawai Kitsune”
Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0

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Comment (224)

  1. Gengar being related to [dopple]ganger is a likely case, since the pokemon itself was originally designed to be the shadow and polar opposite to Clefable. They share striking similarities in body proportion and the fact that ghost-type and normal-type moves cannot affect pokemon of the other type, is from the idea of being unable to hurt your own shadow.

  2. Neat. I had always assumed that the name pikachu was a combination of the words pika and kikachu, both of which are furry animals with the pika looking a lot like pikachu actually.

  3. Was the real reason for the R in Porygon actually the japanese stereotype you quoted? It seems a little too easy, and a little too unlikely that they would make racial jokes in their pokemon names.

  4. If you want to discuss racism. putting a headdress on a totem pole is not just racist, it's pretty dang ignorant. Headdresses are primarily worn by Plains Indians while Totems are in the Pacific Northwest region in North America. The two regions are around 600 miles (965km) away from each other and the cultures are vastly different. That would be like saying well the United Kingdom and Denmark are kindddd offfff in the same area (around 985km again) and both kinds of people have fair skin and drink beer…so they're the same. what? no.

  5. The "r" in Porygon was clearly a deliberate choice. They could have named it Polygon if they wanted to, it wouldn't even be the only Gen 1 Pokemon to use a real word as a name. (Electrode, Golem and Mew say hi.) Also, there's no way in hell the Japanese Pokemon team would have allowed a name that could be viewed as offensive through. As for why… Who knows. We did get quite a few lazy corruptions for English names in Gen 1 (Seel, Jynx, Muk, Koffing, etc.), so it's possibly just that. Doubt we'll ever know.

  6. That is very interesting. Poor Seel. It needs a better name. Its evolved form is named Dewgong. This sounds lazy too, because it is just a dugong. Then when I look closer I noticed that name has dew in it, which would fit the water typing. I wonder if there could be more creative names. I came up of Foshy and Sirenky. When I come up with creature names, I borrow scientific names like there is no tomorrow. I shape the name so it sounds pretty. Foshy is the alternative name for Seel. It is pronounced like a combination of "foe" and "she". It comes from Phocidae, the family of seals. Foshy sounds like such a cute name. Foshy, I choose you. Foshy evolves to Sirenky. Sirenky is the alternative name for Dewgong. It comes from the words siren and selky. Siren is an interesting word with several meanings. It is like Sirenia, the order of dugongs and manatees. It is the name of mythical aquatic humanoids. They are depicted as mermaids or sea bird people. Sirens sing beautiful songs that lure sailors. Then sailors crash on the shore and die. Siren is most commonly used as an alarm that emergency vehicles use. Selky is the name of mythical seal people. Dewgong does have an elegant appearance. It looks a little bit like a mermaid or something similar. So it would fit to have a name after siren and selky. The dugong's relative, the manatee, has been mistaken for a mermaid. Despite this, Poplio line has the seal-like Pokemon that look closer to the mythical creatures. I like these pokemon. They have good designs, and decently creative nicknames. I admit I chose Popplio as my first starter for Pokemon Sun and Moon. I am not ashamed of it.

  7. Thats like saying americans are racist because they dont pronounce the R correctly when speaking in certain languages. Its not like its their fault.

  8. A Japanese team decided to include a Japanese word as a Pokemon name? Fucking racist.

    Also; my Midwestern American accent has been mocked before, so it must be racist for me to speak in it.

    Also, 'corruption' is an interesting term for 'loanword'

  9. Is it racist if the people who make the game are the ones perpetuating it? It reminds me how when us "Mericans" use um… the phrase "Merican" in regular speech. We are making fun of ourselves.

  10. Wait, you actually didn't give the information about Porygon's name.
    In Japanese, there is no "R" or "L" sound, there is a sort of mix of both, and, that's true, it kinda sound more like an "L" sound (like in "lollipop"). But Japanese language don't use an alphabet. It uses a syllabic system. So when you write "り", you read it like the "li" in "lollipop".
    Bur if you want to write this in romaji (alphabet), you will write "li" or "ri", because we had to find a way to write this in our alphabet. Both ways are correct, but if I remember well, the convention is to use the "r" to translate the "らりるれろ" (ra, ri, ru, re, ro) sounds. Japanese will read it the same, because it's the fucking same song in their language, and not because they can't prononce the "R" sound.
    So "arigato" should be pronounced "aligato".
    Porygon is written "ポリゴン" in Japanese. It stands for "Polygon", but if you take the katakana and write it down in alphabet, it gives "PO RI GO N", and it is pronounced "polygon" in Japanese (really close to the french pronounciation "polygone"). They just kept the Japanese writing.
    I thought I found a good channel, but it's full of small mistakes and gives no explanation at all. Unsubscribe.

  11. Jirachi (gen3)
    togepi and its evolutions (gen2 and 4)
    ~Salazzle (gen7)~ never mid i just figured that one out, dazzle salamander… god damn it
    Zoroark (gen5)
    Heliolisk (gen6)

  12. Curiously, since italian, just like spanish, has that vibrating "R" sound, the asian "L" sounds ok to us but in our stereotype, they can't pronounce the "R" and they become "L" instead.

  13. Actually…. No. It's not racist. The R line in Japanese is actually an alveolar flap (along the lines of the way Americans say the tt in the middle of butter, or the dd in the middle of middle or ladder) and words (like Polygon) brought into Japanese that have the R sound (including the uvular non-sibbilant voice fricative a la French) as well as the alveolar lateral approximate (aka the L sound) are both assigned the flap. When bringing it back to English, they could have either called it Polygon, which would be pretty stupid to trademark… Like trademarking Scrolls or King. Just too common of a word… So they changed one letter so it could be trademarked. So, you see, the motive was money, dear boy.

  14. look closely in death note. when they are discussing the death of cia agent larry conner; there is a computer screen with his profile on it. his name is spelled rally conner

  15. Pokémon: has a name that is a corruption of a real word
    NameExplain: ThAtS rAcIsT jApAnEsSe PeOpLe CaNt PrOnOuNcE L's ReEeEeEeEeE

  16. German names provided here with explanation:
    Seal: Jurob (Seal=Robbe) with Jugong as the level-up (Manatee=Dugong)
    Gengar is the same in german, Doppelgänger being a german word…
    Pikachu is even in my autocorrect so you know it's global 😉
    Marill, Xatu and Porygon are also the same. Huh, I thought I'd have more work here ^^

  17. Ok, so, porygon is a combination on the words “origami” and “polygon”
    Wanted to clarify that, so it is not meant to be racist, and I actually do agree that porygon being banned was an overreaction

  18. When I was in 1st grade a 2nd grader tricked me into giving him for a rare rayquaza for a Haunter, who he said was a legendary. I’m still sad about losing that rayquaza to this day

  19. Why not Seel? I mean, why so simple and obvious? Dewgong doesn't look like a real dugong, and seals don't have tusks, horns or drool a lot with a big sloppy tongue. None of these signature features of Seel correspond to real seals. Something more might've been going on there. Seel in Japanese is Powou. What's a Powou? According to Glosbe, a Powou is a "Brave little guy." Guess that works. Seel, seel.

    Seel is one of my fave Pokemon, and I always have a few Seel cards in my Water decks. Very useful abilities there


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