Shortly after the starters for Pokémon Sun and Moon were revealed yesterday, the internet exploded with love for the new monsters. Well, mostly. While Rowlet (the owl) and Litten (the cat) were showered with seemingly endless positive tweets, comments and enthusiastic fan art, one Pokémon seemed to be left on the sidelines: Popplio, the water seal/dog. While most Pokémon fans were freaking out about Litten's perfect name, or Rowlet's cute bowtie, Popplio seemed to either attract indifference, hate or worse, straight-up pity. Here's a small sampling of Popplio's lack of popularity:
— Shigeru Miyamoto (@RealShigeruM) May 10, 2016
I'm the only person on earth who likes popplio
— ScribbleP (@Scrible_P) May 11, 2016
popplio is ugly
— jean (@factkins) May 11, 2016
a plea…. pic.twitter.com/KlyoVvxKbT
— kc grəən (@kcgreenn) May 10, 2016
Image credit: Deltrastreamhunter
That's just a small fraction of what is floating around right now. Today however the few Popplio fans out there are coming out of the woodwork to defend their precious clown:
Some Popplio hate is even inspiring all sorts of heartbreaking fan art:
I'll admit it: when I first saw Popplio, I disliked him. He didn't seem as cool or as cute as Rowlet or Litten, and there was just something about his doofy face that made it easy to hate him. I realise that's pretty harsh, especially since we're talking about an innocent little seal dog, but I'm just being truthful about my initial knee-jerk reaction.
The more I looked at Popplio, however, the more I realised that he reminded me of my actual dog. They both have those sad, meek eyes that puppies sometimes do. They both inspire a sense of helplessness, they both have this strong sense of purity. And you know what, I tease my actual dog endlessly for being so vulnerable to me; I say things about him all the time that make me sound like a total arsehole. He loves me all the same.
Maybe it is not so much that there is something innate about Popplio's design that inspires disgust, inasmuch as it is that we truly do not deserve Popplio.
He's a good boy. Yes he is.