February 27 marks a special day for fans of the global phenomenon that is Pokémon. That’s because on this day, 27 years ago ironically, the first Pokémon games were released in Japan under the titles Pocket Monsters Red, Pocket Monsters Green and the special edition Pocket Monsters Blue. By the time the game hit American markets two years later in 1998, the games were repackaged as Pokémon Red and Pokémon Blue, which combined the previous titles into one fantastical journey on your Game Boy — remember those?!
Two-and-a-half decades later and the craze is still going strong, amplified further by a new slew of games and apps suitable for the digital-savvy generation of today.
With that said, Happy Pokémon Day!
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Although the “gotta catch ’em all” trope started for many with the video games, the trading cards definitely helped in fueling the Pokémania as well. However, the franchise truly became what it is as we know it today thanks to the animated series that gave voice to fan-favorite Pikachu — “pika! pika!” to be exact — and a cast of characters that gave the series its humanity.
While we all know the main main Ash Ketchum, it was his host of colleagues that helped make Pokémon the most successful video game adaptation of all time, currently in its 25th season with Ultimate Journeys on Netflix. True fans will remember his original crew, which consisted on Professor Oak and two foes-turned-friends in the form of Cerulean Gym firecracker Misty and Pewter City’s own Brock. However, the latter of Ash’s travel companions had a striking physical feature that was unlike any of the show’s other characters: he had dark skin.
As seen in the clip above, Pokémon’s resident loverboy also had dark chestnut hair that stood up on his head in a way that was synonymous with an afro, or at the very least hair with a kinky texture. Add to the fact that his backstory reads much like a lot of our African American upbringings — a teen forced to take care of many siblings on his own due to parental neglect — and we ultimately just had to ask one pressing question: Is Brock, the Pewter City Pokemon trainer, actually Black?
It’s not a new question in the least bit (see above), and we clearly aren’t the only ones who believe that our good brother Brock is, well, a brother! Of course it doesn’t matter being that we are talking about a fictional cartoon character, but ion the other hand it does because representation matters. Is it about time we start honoring Brock in the way we do Gerald from Hey Arnold!, Susie Carmichael from Rugrats, Penny from The Proud Family or even Riley from The Boondocks?
Take this Pokémon Day to let us know whether or not you think Brock is Black, and enjoy some of the most interesting social media hot takes on the topic below:
Pokémon Day: So…Is Brock Black? was originally published on blackamericaweb.com
1. The mixed person of the day is Brock from Pokémon! He is half black half Japanese!
2. brock from pokémon will always be a black man to me . i don’t care .
3. was brock from pokémon actually black or just like southeast asian?
4. was brock from pokemon black or ariana grande-italian
5. *hits blunt* Brock in Pokémon was the rock type gym leader & he was black. Black + Rock = Brock. These niggas racist.
6. Brock from pokemon was black & niggas can’t tell me different because he has a permanent light skin squint
7. Brock … black dude on Pokémon …with a trash dad and hella brothers and sisters 🙄
8. Brock from Pokemon was fasho black.
9. The year is 2098. All digital media of our time has been lost. Black Israelites stand in Time Square debating that Brock from Pokemon was actually a black man.
10. Was Brock from Pokemon black? I mean his hair did stay nappy as hell, and was thirsting after every woman he came across…
11. Brock was the only black nigga on Pokemon and instead of training his Pokemon he was chasing hoes instead.
12. Ever notice how Brock was the closest thing to a black guy in Pokemon? Well, that’s why his name was Brock, Asian people say black that way😱
13. Question @HbcuAnime and Black anime fans: Who was the first Black person you saw in an anime and why was it Brock from Pokemon?
14. I think BROCK is black #Pokemon
15. Kodac black look like Brock from pokemon