I don’t make the rules, but if you liked Pokémon as a kid, you’re probably queer now. And that’s because most of the original 150 Pokémon were queer AF. With the release of Detective Pikachu, now’s a good time to look back at the ways in which some of the battling monsters were clearly not only battling each other, but also battling against the cishetpatriarchy and gender norms.
This is not a ranking or even a complete list. Most Pokémon are kinda queer — except Rhydon, he’s cishet af. But here is a collection of some of the franchise most certifiably LGBTQ+ creations.
Given the butterfly’s long history of representing trans people, it’s clear that Ash’s Butterfree is the strong trans woman of the Pokémon world. On top of that, when you were playing Pokémon, Butterfree are there to help your team out very early in the game, just like our trans brothers and sisters are at the forefront of queer liberation.
As a close friend of mine has said to me many times, all you need to do is look at Mr. Mime’s moveset in the original games to know that he’s a gay man. All of his moves are super defensive — light screen, deflect, etc. But on top of that, in the opening episodes of the Sun & Moon anime, Mr. Mime looks like a retired gay who’s ready to move to Palm Springs. Someone get this mime a caftan!