Squirtle? Bulbasaur.
May 22, 2008 6:00 AM   Subscribe

Was there a falling out between Squirtle and Bulbasaur?

So, this is stupid, yet I have to know. I've watched this strangely compelling clip a few times, and in it, Squirtle is resigning from the Pokemon team. The drama is ratcheted up while he's saying goodbye to his co-workers. Bulbasaur is hesitates to wish him well, unlike the rest of the team. He decides to shake Squirtle's hand anyway but looks disdainful as he does so. Or possibly forgiving?

Does anyone know what happened between these guys?

Googling the web in general and searching Bulbapedia is not bearing any fruit. Unfortunately, I've seen a few other episodes of Pokemon, and the quality is kind of not bearable. So, I'd rather not watch a hundred episodes to find out what the beef is. If someone just told me what was up, it'd be Super Effective!
posted by ignignokt to Media & Arts (12 answers total) 53 users marked this as a favorite
I think Bulbasur's holding back is out of sadness/reluctance, rather than disdain/forgiving. Of course, I only play pokemon (only while taking care of the kids, mind you) and don't watch it, so take from that what you will.

Now I'm waiting for the Askme from Bulbasaur "I lost my bff, I think I was too cold, and I have a secret crush, what should I do?"
posted by artifarce at 6:48 AM on May 22, 2008 [1 favorite]

This synopsis indicates that they are just very sad to be saying goodbye to each other and reluctant to do so.

Could it be that the unbelievably cheap and shitty animation is failing to express the intent of the writers? meowth that's right
posted by East Manitoba Regional Junior Kabaddi Champion '94 at 6:52 AM on May 22, 2008 [4 favorites]

Here's another synopsis. There's barely any mention of either Squirtle or Bulbasaur in the preceding episodes, so I'm guessing the subtleties of their complicated friendship are open to interpretation and/or fanfic.

Bulbasaur is kind of a stubborn jerk, though.
posted by Metroid Baby at 6:58 AM on May 22, 2008 [1 favorite]

If Pokemon had an animation budget, they would have shown Bulbasaur trying to act cool and tough, like he doesn't care that much, but fighting back tears in close-up. But they don't.
posted by No-sword at 7:23 AM on May 22, 2008

Best answer: I think it had something to do with cookies.

"Meanwhile in the kitchen Bulbasaur picks up a Bulbasaur shaped cookie whilst Squirtle tries to pull a party popper and succeeds in doing so when he accidentally makes Bulbasaur jump with the cookie he was holding which flies into the air and lands into Squirtle’s mouth of which he consequently eats. Bulbasaur is mad at Squirtle for eating the cookie."
posted by iconomy at 7:40 AM on May 22, 2008 [1 favorite]

Mod note: Yes, you still have to answer the question, even in a Pokeman relationshipfilter question.
posted by cortex (staff) at 7:46 AM on May 22, 2008 [32 favorites]

Best answer: Here's what it is. Bulba and Squirtle were some of the last few remaining pokes (along with pikachu) that Ash had from early on in the series. Bulba understands why Squirtle needs to leave and how he could be more beneficial to the Squirtle Squad, but he's resentful. He feels like Squirtle is abandoning their posse in a "and then there were two" sense. Deep down, bulbasaur will miss squirtle, but he doesn't want to show it out of his own machismo.
posted by saxamo at 9:36 AM on May 22, 2008 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Yeah, it's an honor thing with Squirtle and his homies from his shady past. Bulbasaur's just too much of a man to admit that sometimes, a cockfighting turtle's gotta do with a cockfighting turtle's gotta do.

Squirtle comes back later on, though, and those great Squirtle Squad shades make appearances in episodes where he's being particularly badass.

(I really, really had nothing better to do for about six months once other than eat, sleep, play Soul Calibur, and watch Pokemon. I'm so ashamed.)
posted by fairytale of los angeles at 10:20 AM on May 22, 2008 [2 favorites]

My friend Dayv, in whom I trust to answer this question best, has this to say:
Bulbasaur (the one in the cartoon, that is), is kind of a tough guy. He doesn't like showing his soft side.

He's really close friends with Squirtle, but his instinct is to act like Squirtle leaving is not a big deal or to give Squirtle a hard time for leaving.

But then he gives in and bids Squirtle farewell as Squirtle goes off to join a racially segregated Squirtle Power commune.

We can never really know whether Bulbasaur does this out of love for his friend, or out of fear that Ash would be angry with him, and would imprison him in a Pokeball.

This is the true mystery of the BDSM reality of Pokemon training.

Also, I think Squirtle may have... "watered" Bulbasaur sometimes.
Yep. Sounds about right to me.
posted by frecklefaerie at 10:34 AM on May 22, 2008 [3 favorites]

Not joking, my cousin is the voice of Bulbasaur. I'll talk to her and see if she can help out.
posted by rbf1138 at 1:40 PM on May 22, 2008 [6 favorites]

Response by poster: rbf1138: Whoa, that is an awesome job! It does sound like the general consensus among those familiar with Bulbasaur here is that Bulbasaur is just too tough for goodbyes, but it'd be great to get a definitive answer from her.
posted by ignignokt at 4:24 PM on May 22, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks to everyone on their insights on the character of Bulbasaur! I was kind of hoping they're was some big dustup over ethics or one of them going too far with playing by his own rules or something, but the explanations so far do make sense.
posted by ignignokt at 4:38 PM on May 22, 2008 [1 favorite]

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