Clips for Pokemon: Sword and Shield have introduced the world to another wave of new Pokemon.
Fans, or in many cases, the parents of fans, have noticed that one of the new Pokemon looks suspiciously familiar.
Obstagoon, the Pokemon in question, will only evolve from a new form of Linoone only obtainable in the U.K inspired Galar region. With its long tongue, and unique markings, Obstagoon appears to resemble rock star Gene Simmons.
Obstagoon is not the only Pokemon inspired by a celebrity. Here are a few other Pokemon based on real people.
The psychic-type Kadabra was introduced in the first generation of the Pokemon games. It is the evolved form of Abra, and later evolves into Alakazam.
One of Kadabra’s most prominent features is the spoon it uses to focus its attacks. Because of this, some assume the Pokemon was inspired by Uri Geller, an illusionist known for bending/breaking spoons with his mind.
Unfortunately, Geller was displeased with the comparison, viewing Kadabra as a ‘dark, occult’ creature. In late 1999, Geller sued Nintendo for the use of his likeness, seeking $60 million in damages.
The result of the lawsuit, if it actually went ahead, is unknown, but since then, the company’s use of Kadabra has been limited. No new cards featuring the Pokemon have been printed since 2002, and it has not had a significant anime appearance since 2006.
Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan
Also introduced in Gen I, Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan remain among the most well-known fighting type Pokemon.
Hitmonchan is known for its powerful punches, while Hitmonlee is a kicker. These talents are reflected in the Pokemon’s names. Hitmonchan is named after popular movie martial-artist Jackie Chan, and Hitmonlee is named for Bruce Lee, who was known for his lightning fast kicks.
Yungoos and Gumshoos
Every Pokemon game has a two-stage normal-type that most trainers will find and catch early on. In Sun and Moon, Yungoos and Gumshoos filled this role.
Soon after the Pokemon’s designs were revealed, fans noticed a similarity between them and U.S President Donald Trump. The realization lead to the invention of the slogan ‘Make Alola Great Again’. After the games’ release, a huge number of Yungoos with Trump inspired nicknames entered the Wonder Trade system.
Pokemon designers claimed that any resemblance to Trump was unintentional.
Galarian Zigzagoon, Linoone, and Obstagoon.
Sword and Shield continues the idea of introducing new, region specific versions of older Pokemon. One of these is a Galarian Zigzagoon. Galarian Zigzagoon is a normal/dark type, and also gains a brand new third-stage evolution. Hoenn’s Zigzagoon stopped evolving after Linoone. Galarian Linoone, however, will evolve into Obstagoon.
All three members of the new line are apparently inspired by members of the rock band KISS. Galarian Zigzagoon and Linoone’s patterns look to be based on Paul Stanley’s stage make-up. As mentioned earlier, Obstagoon is inspired by Gene Simmons, ‘The Beast’.
Thankfully, Nintendo are probably not going to be sued this time. Simmons considers the tribute ‘flattering’. The rocker has happily shared pictures of himself alongside his new Pokemon doppleganger on social media.
We’ll get to see Obstagoon in action when Pokemon Sword and Shield are released in November.