Sophy Ziss
November 14, 2017 11:48 am

When most people think about Pokémon‘s Pikachu, they probably think two things: “Adorable,” and the phrase “Pika Pika.” Historically, our pal Pikachu only really interacts with Pokémon trainers and other Pokémon through angry lightning bolts and variations on its own name. The new Pokémon movie — Pokémon the Movie: I Choose You! — changes all that, though.

Because apparently, Pikachu speaks English in it and, to be polite, the moment is… confusing.

For more than two decades, Pokémon fans have become accustomed to Pikachu chirping out one or two phrases ad infinitum, so to hear it speaking English — English! — in full sentences is disturbing. Also, why now? And in general, just why? BuzzFeed’s Ryan Broderick captured the audience’s incredible reaction to when Pikachu speaks English. And FYI, the language in the video is also a little NSFW, so definitely wear headphones.

It’s weird. It’s weird. There’s no getting around it.

The “Pikachu speaks English” scandal is already so big, the voice actor weighed in on the drama on Tumblr.

“I think the literal circumstances under which Pikachu is ‘speaking’ are up to interpretation,” wrote Tumblr user bamboott. “I saw it as something in Ash’s mind.” Pikachu and trainer Ash do have a history of being able to communicate — not quite telepathically, but through feelings, almost. So maybe it’s all in Ash’s head? Still, it’s pretty jarring.

Alternate fan theories include “Ash is dreaming,” and “Pikachu can’t really talk,” though neither one would be a sufficient explanation. Are the creators behind this Pokémon film doing this just to mess with us? It’s really starting to seem that way. Pika-pika-pika-no thanks?

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