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Why Do the Gays Love Pokémon So Much?

Why Do the Gays Love Pokémon So Much?

Why Do the Gays Love Pokémon So Much?

What exactly is it about the beloved anime series that attracts so many queer fans?

byraffy

It's no secret that the gays love Pokémon. Every time a new addition to the Poké kingdom is announced, all you see on Twitter for the next few days is a bunch of super dedciated stans freaking out (in the best way) about it. Maybe it's the gender-bending, drag-filled dramatics of Team Rocket? Maybe it's the flamboyant colorfulness of the Pokémon themselves? Or maybe it's something deeper?

Whatever it is, there's just something about the beloved, long-running anime series that has queer fans absolutely hooked. 

In a video essay about the history of LGBTQ+ representation and censorship in some of the most iconic and popular anime, Get in the Robot's Dorrie Sacks explores many different titles that have some of the most enduring and loyal queer fanbases—the likes of which include Satoshi Tajiri's beloved Pokémon.

"Pokémon puts a heavy emphasis on community, as the games encourage playing with friends and sharing memories," Sacks says about the reason why queer people are so drawn to the media franchise. "Lots of weird little kids, like me, who felt like outcasts were able to find each other and bond through Pokémon, and among those outcasts were a generation of queer youth." 

Sacks later goes on to cite Team Rocket's Jessie and James, the loveable, goofy villains of the original TV series who were often depicted dressing up in drag and not giving a single f**k about gender norms, as some of the show's lasting LGBTQ icons. 

"They breathe so much life into the repetitive Pokémon formula with their extravagant personalities and love for the dramatics," she says. "Think of all the disguises these two put on and how many of them involced drag! Any time I saw Jessie in a suit and James in a poofy dress, I never thought of that as something that didn't make sense. I just accepted that was who they were. And I thought they looked fabulous!"

Watch Get in the Robot's full video essay on queer censorship and representation in the video below! And subscribe to Get in the Robot's YouTube channel for more!

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Raffy Ermac

Digital Director, Out.com

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel

Raffy is a Los Angeles-based writer, editor, video creator, critic, and digital director of Out Magazine. The former editor-in-chief of PRIDE, he is also a die-hard Rihanna and Sailor Moon stan who loves to write about all things pop culture, entertainment, and identities. Follow him on Instagram (@raffyermac) and Twitter (@byraffy), and subscribe to his YouTube channel