Pikachu Used To Be Way Cuter (And Fatter)

Pikachu, the iconic Pokémon from Pocket Monsters, looks slightly different these days. Adorable, sure, but not nearly as adorable as in 1997 back when the Pokémon anime first debuted. And not nearly as fat either.

Over the weekend, a thread called "Pikachu in the early days was way too cute" (初期のピカチュウかわいすぎ) appeared on 2ch, Japan's largest web forum. Net users posted images from the first few anime episodes, showing just how different the round and cuddly Pikachu of yesteryear looked.

This thread isn't the first to notice Pikachu's altered appearance in the anime — and the games. For a while now, Pokémon fans have been pointing out just how different the character now looks. There's even a "Pikachu: Losing Weight Since 1998" image that has been floating around the internet for donkey's yonks.

Website ScrewAttack thought the change might be because Pokémon's creators want a fitter Pikachu — a theory that doesn't really hold water when you consider all the Pokémon-branded junk food Japan sees. Nor if you look at the very round Doraemon, Japan's favourite cartoon cat robot.

The answer is probably a lot more simple: Over time, animated characters change. Just look at Mickey Mouse.

"Oh, wow, this really takes me back," wrote one net user. "Pikachu these days seems over-refined," added another. "Pikachu was more cute and cuddly. Now, Pikachu is a little too thin and scary."

At this rate, though, in 10 years, Pikachu is gonna look like this:

初期のピカチュウかわいすぎワロタwwwwwwwwww [暇つぶしニュース]

Top picture: てがき


    I disagree. I like the new pikachu more...

    New pikachu doesn't teach kids it's okay to be fat.

      Neither did old Pikachu, unless you think getting a kid a rabbit or something would do the same thing.

      geez, i knew there would be comments like this..... im just going to facepalm.

        Coz I'm always DEAD serious. Dead as obese pikachu at 35.

    I love the old Pikachu! I had the first gen plush toy for him and he was super cuddle cause he's round and chubby :D I guess prolonged adventure with Ash would make him lose some baby fat, but personally I'll cuddle them all before they get to that point :P

    Pikachu does have different looking dimensions depending on his posture too. I watched the original episodes with my son recently and although there is a difference I don't think it is quite so pronounced as the above shows.

    I feel the need to point out that in the (delightful?) drawing at the top, the modern Pikachu is actually a female.

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