Things About "Pokemon Go" That Are Actually Creepy

It wasn’t until I took “Pokemon Go” outside for the first time last Tuesday that I truly started to understand the obsession with it. But there’s a downside to arriving at this understanding, too: As is typical for me, the moment I started thinking a little too much about the game, the more I realized that some things about “Pokemon Go” are actually kind of creepy. To be fair, some of these realizations are more about the Pokemon universe in general, rather than “Pokemon Go” in particular; however, not having been a Pokemon fan as a kid, it’s only as an adult that I’m now steeped enough in the franchise to begin asking these questions. Because seriously, you guys. They’re weird. Really, really weird.

In all likelihood, even if I had grown up playing or watching Pokemon titles on a regular basis, I probably wouldn’t have picked up on a lot of these oddities at the time. However, I find that as an adult, I frequently make rather startling realizations about things we didn’t think twice of as kids: Like, for example, how weird it was that your reward for playing SkiFree long enough on your ancient PC was to have a Sasquatch emerge and eat you, or how bizarre some of the things we did to get our crushes’ attention in the ‘90s were. Hindsight, as they say, is 20/20 — and that’s particularly true with the media we consume.

So, as entertaining as I find “Pokemon Go” to be — yes, even as a grownass 30-something — somehow I still can’t shake how weird the following conventions about the whole thing are. I’m not alone in my confusion, right? Please tell me I’m not alone. I just need to know that someone else has had these thoughts, too.

1. The Point Is To Capture Wild Animals & Remove Them From Their Natural Habitat…


And while we’re on the subject:

2. …In Order To Train Them To Beat Each Other Up

It’s like imaginary Fight Club. With teddy bears. And the teddy bears have no say over whether they fight or not. We are all terrible people.

3. The Amount Of Stuff You Can Fit Into Your Trainer’s Backpack

To be fair, this one is really more curious than creepy, but I mean, seriously: How do all those empty Pokeballs, full Pokeballs, eggs, egg incubators, potions, incense modules, lure modules, and whatever the heck else trainers carry around fit into one tiny backpack? It must be bigger on the inside. That’s the only reasonable explanation.

4. Life Inside A Pokeball

Like the standard trainer backpack, Pokeballs must be bigger on the inside. Because otherwise, forcing Pokemon to live inside them would be a cruel and unusual punishment.

(Is it actually meant to be a cruel and unusual punishment? Oh god. I’m a monster.)

5. Professor Willow’s Shoes

I can’t. I just cannot.

6. What Some Pokemon Evolve Into

Raticate is an R.O.U.S. straight out of The Princess Bride. And it’s terrifying.


7. How They Evolve

It’s candy. The answer is candy. So basically, we’re pumping them full of sugar until they mutate. Awesome.

Not unrelated...

8. What We Feed Them

The last time I checked, candy wasn’t exactly heralded as a foundation for a well-balanced diet — and yet, that’s literally all we seem to feed our Pokemon, and only for the aforementioned evolution purposes. That’s… kind of weird. And not exactly good pet care.

And it’s even weirder when you consider this one:

9. Trading Pokemon For Candy

I have so many questions about this gameplay mechanic, and they are all really, really, dark. They mostly center around what happens to the Pokemon you trade in: What does Professor Willow do with them? Are we reducing living creatures down to a form of currency? Or worse, do the Pokemon become candy? Are we looking at a Soylent Green kind of situation? Is candy made of Pokemon?!

(I would imagine the answer is actually, “The Pokemon live long and happy lives under Professor Willow’s care,” but I still just can’t stop my brain from going to those incredibly bizarre places. Possibly I have issues.)

10. Rustling Grass

I mean, it’s fine when the grass is rustling because there’s a Pokemon hiding in there. But when the grass rustles, and no Pokemon appear? …Let’s just say that I do not want to know what might be responsible for it.

11. The Endless Battle For Gym Control

We are born into the fight. We have been battling for generations. We don’t know why, or to what purpose. All we know is that to control a gym is all. It is our destiny. And we must follow it.

12. Everything That Has Happened To These People

Play “Pokemon Go” responsibly, y’all.

Images: Giphy (11); Pokemon Go