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The Best and Worst of the Unova Region

I thought it would be fun to take a break from fast-paced cop chases and reckless races to bring you my thoughts on certain Pokemon brought to us in the Unova region of the Pokemon universe. The good, I feel, are really good. Their designs are very memorable and some of them rank as a few of my all-time favorite Pokemon across all generations. The bad, in my own honest opinion, are downright embarassing, however. I cannot believe most of them made it into the final product. There are Fakemon out there made by fans that are far better than these. If ever I encounter more ill-created Pokemon in the future (which is probably certain), I'll think about these Fakemon and how Game Freak really should have paid these artists so they could use their ideas to bolster a new Pokedex. Anyway, getting back on track...

Here are the Good Guys

1. Serperior


I may have picked the Water starter, Oshawott, but the Grass starter was my second choice because of this final evolution. It looks graceful, serene, ferocious, and deadly, all at once. It simultaneously expresses arrogance and beauty. I can't say I've ever had an issue with any of the Grass starters' final evolutions, so this one simply joins the lot with an egotistical scoff.

2. Samurott


I've mentioned before how much this guy reminds me of narwahls, but the truth remains that all joking aside, this guy looks really strong and cool. I like him much better than the likes of Feraligatr and Empoleon. I daresay I think Samurott is more awesome than Swampert, even though Mudkip wins over Oshawott any day of the week.

3. Krookodile


I don't have much to say about this guy except that the moment I saw him, I knew that there was a strong resemblance to some specific enemies from DKC2 and for that reason, I'd want to catch one and name it Kremkroc, lol. Generation 5 seems to have really outdone itself with interesting and desirable Dark and Ghost type Pokemon. This is one of the Dark ones, naturally, and it's also Ground-type, which makes it even more desirable to me since I tend to like Rock and Ground types among some other types.

4. Crustle


I was never a big fan of Bug Pokemon, never a fan of Crabby or Paras or any of them. This guy, however, intrigues me. It's because he's Bug/Rock. Gen5 in general has some cool-looking bugs in its roster, but this one has a particularly neat look to it. At first, I thought it was ridiculous, but it's definitely grown on me.

5. Sigilyph


Look at this guy. He exudes awesome. He's a Psychic/Flying hybrid, which means he falls outside my usual favored repetoire of types. I don't know much about his stats or his Move Pool, but this guy just caught my attention right away on looks alone. That, and his name is fantastic, too.

6. Reuniclus


Reuniclus may have two prior evolutions that leave much to be desired design-wise, but this guy's got everything: color, charm, and an adorable smile. If it wasn't made out of Jello or some such, I'd totally want to give it a hug. Here's another Psychic type. It seems like I'll be delving more into Psychic type Pokemon than I ever have before this gen. Now, like with Krookodile, upon first glance, Reuniclus reminded me of another creature I've encountered before. Can you guess what it is? This guy. That's why when I eventually catch a Solosis (this guy's first form), I'm naming him after his "twin".

7. Sawsbuck


Prior to Deerling and its evolution, Sawsbuck, there was only Generation 2's Stantler to represent the deer in the world of Pokemon. This was unfortunate, as Stantler doesn't exactly look all that great. Sawsbuck, on the other hand, is majestic. That's the word that comes to mind for me. Not only is the design really something to behold, they take advantage of the game's Seasons mechanic and actually change their appearance depending on what season it is in-game. You catch one and you technically "catch" all four of these. At last, deer are well-represented in the Pokemon universe.

8. Jellicent


Believe it or not, Jellicent is Water/Ghost. This is one of the super cool new Ghost type Pokemon we've been given in Gen 5. More than the fact this guy reminds me of either Chill Bully from Super Mario 64 or, well, this guy (first pic). Yup, my Jellicent may just end up getting named after the latter, even though that's far too cheery an inspiration for a Pokemon whose description notes that "their favorite food is life energy" and "the fate of the ships and crew that wander into Jellicent's habitat" can be described as "all sunken, all lost, all vanished."

9. Eelektross


He's the final evolution of a three-part Electric evolution chain. I just think he looks cool. He appeals to me much in the same way that Lanturn did back in Gen 2. I guess I have a thing for dangerous sea creatures. You see, Eelektross is said to "crawl out of the ocean" using its arms and then "attack prey on shore and immediately drag it into the ocean" where they'll suck in their prey with their sucker mouths and "use their fangs to shock the prey with electricity." Lanturn can "blind prey with an intense burst of light" and then "swallow the immobilized prey in a single gulp." I dread what kind of fan art Eelektross might generate, given the kind of nightmare-inducing illustrations Lanturn has provided already.

10. Accelgor


I believe this is the most mysterious-looking Bug Pokemon ever created. I almost wish it was a Bug/Dark hybrid out of the simple idea that it sure looks like it possesses some dark secrets or talents.

11. Hydreigon


My brother really likes this guy; I agree that his design is really neat. He's Dark/Dragon, although I thought at first that he was Dragon/Ghost. Oh well.

12. Litwick, Lampent, and Chandelure


Now here's a great example of someone's creative juices really flowing. This is a Ghost/Fire chain and they are currently just about my favorite Ghost Pokemon of all time. Chandelures feed on the souls that they burn, leaving just the empty shell of bodies behind. They also put their foes/prey into a hypnotic trance by waving their arms around. Awesome. P.S. Their shiny version looks even cooler.

13. Braviary


Without a doubt, this Normal Flyer is going to be a staple in my collection from this generation onward. It's a freakin' eagle, for crying out loud. *points at GS icon* I love eagles. They're very symbolic - moreso for me than most. Fun Fact: This is one of the White version exclusives, so boy am I glad I picked White. Fun Fact #2: Not surprisingly, this guy appears in many "Top Pokemon of Generation 5" videos on Youtube.

And now for the bad...

1. The Elemental Monkeys



Ugh, what were they thinking? Elemental monkeys sound unbelievably awesome as an idea, but I don't know what happened when they went about designing them. The Grass ones are admittedly decent, but they quickly go downhill as you go from Fire into Water. What is up with Simisear's expression? Are Panpour and Simipour blind? The potential was there and these just don't cut it for me.

2. Woobat and Swoobat


Let me start by saying that Swoobat is actually cl@ssified as the Courting Pokemon. Who would ever think of something like it as romantic? They're like this generation's Zubat chain, but their designs are just awful. I don't want bats with pink noses with hearts on them!

3. Trubbish and Garbodor


We may only be at #3, but these are by far the worst offenders of this generation. Again, we must ask, "What were Nintendo and Game Freak thinking???" I would easily trade both of these for just one of the linked-to Fakemon above. If I ever get around to seriously trying to complete my Pokedex, even then I will wait a long while before catching a Trubbish. These guys are horrible. I'd take a Grimer or Muk over these guys any day.

4. Vanillite, Vanillish, and Vanilluxe

vanillite vanillish vanilluxe

Another case of "What were they thinking?" I tend to be turned off by all Pokemon that significantly resemble non-living real world items, so it certainly explains why I absolutely despise the garbage Pokemon of #3 and these ice cream cones. Honestly, they couldn't think of anything better for a three-part Ice evolution chain?

5. Gothitelle


Gothitelle is a tricky scenario. They don't look all that appealing, but their description is awesome. It's an Astral Body Pokemon which "can predict the future from the placement and movement of the stars" and "can see Trainers' life spans." I guess I just don't get where the "Astral Body" part fits into their aesthetic.

6. Stunfisk


Where does its name come from? What makes it Ground/Electric, apart from its coloration's inclinations? What in the heck is it exactly??? It's a "Trap Pokemon," whatever that means. It doesn't even have any evolutions. I just don't know what else to say about this guy except, WTF.

7. Vullaby and Mandibuzz


This is Black version's equivalent of Rufflet and Braviary. May I be honest here? Black got shafted! There is just no way this pairing comes close to being equals with Rufflet and Braviary. In this case, though, it's not so much about design. They're just not that interesting...or cute...or coooool. In the world of Pokemon, if you don't possess at least one of those traits, you're pretty much automatically relegated to "meh" status and no one really uses or remembers you. These Pokemon seem doomed to that fate.