Rant: Signs of Pokémon Obsession
Oh, we've all seen hundreds of lists like this before. They go something like this:
YOU KNOW YOU'RE OBSESSED WITH POKÉMON WHEN...
- ...you think your pet dog is a Growlithe.
- ...you think your pet cat is a Meowth.
- ...you throw balls at wild animals thinking you can catch them.
- ...you take your dog and your cat outside and try to make your dog use Fire attacks.
- ...your cat scratches you and you think it's using Scratch.
- ...you hold CDs up to your pets' foreheads, thinking they'll learn new attacks.
- ...you see a bee outside and think, "Better get away from that Beedrill!"
...and so on until you've got about fifty billion different ways to say "...you're stupid and delusional enough to actually think animals are Pokémon and ought to be locked up in a mental institute before you get somebody hurt."
These lists could have come from an anti-Pokémon website. Seriously. What better way to insult Pokémon fans than to judge that kind of utter stupidity to be the main symptom of Pokémon obsession? It baffles me when I see Pokémon fans making huge lists of these. I'd understand if they were funny, but they're... not. "Person X is stupid and therefore thinks thing Y is really thing Z" is not funny. "Person X is stupid" jokes can work if person X's stupidity leads to them doing or saying something that is amusing in itself, but the Pokémon obsession lists try to be amusing simply through the concept of person X being extraordinarily stupid, and what's worse, they repeat it over and over and over and over until any humor value that could possibly have been in it at some point is entirely lost.
In theory, lists like these are supposed to have a point, and it is the ability to identify with some of the points, but face it, nobody who is going to read it has ever done any of that, simply because they're not that stupid. Or at least, if they are, you ought to be worrying that your website attracts such people, not putting effort into letting them experience déjà vu.
How about focusing on the things that really show that you're obsessed with Pokémon - for example, when the type chart has become so wired into your head that it just "feels right" that birds are weak to electricity, even when you're not playing the game? When you can imagine attacking a certain Pokémon with a certain attack and automatically "know" whether it's super effective? When Pokémon appear in most of your dreams? When the letters P and K appearing together automatically make you think "Pokémon"? When words like "eradicate" have become permanently connected to the Pokémon whose names are derived from them in your mind? When you spend years of your life creating a Pokémon website or fanfiction in your free time? When you put your pencil down to draw something when you're bored and the first thing you think of drawing is a Pokémon? When you name your pets after Pokémon?
Please stop insulting yourself with those stupidity lists. I'm all for studying the symptoms of Pokémon obsession, but then make them either something that people can really pronounce themselves guilty of or something that is actually funny.
Page last modified October 15 2007 at 03:29 GMT