PROTIP: Press 'i' to view the image gallery, 'v' to view the video gallery, or 'r' to view a random entry.
Pokepuns are an image macro series illustrating various puns and wordplay based on the character names of the Nintendo anime and video game franchise Pokémon.
The image macros labeled “Pokepun” did not appear until January 2009 with a picture of Raichu and a caption that read “I’m going to Raichu a love song” (I’m going to write you a love song"). An image macro version was posted by DeviantArt user ~its-Will-yo on January 17th and a photoshopped version was posted via Digg on January 29th.
Some fans also assert that the official names of Pokemon monsters in Japanese were inspired by puns involving their physical traits and characteristics. Prior to the release of Pokemon Black and White in 2011, the NewsBot on the Project Pokemon forum posted a list of speculated reasons behind the official names of each monster in the game.
The idea of using Pokémon names as puns has been explored as early as on June 30th, 2007 in a thread posted via 4chan’s /b/ (random) board. In the thread, some began photoshopping Pokemon characters into book covers with titles altered to include their names. Months later on September 8th, 2007, a Slowpoke thread was derailed by textual puns accompanied by images of Pokemon characters.
Meanwhile, the concept of a word puzzle using pictures in place of words originates from Rebus, an allusional device that uses pictures to represent words or syllables. The technique was heavily used in heraldry artworks such as Canting arms to cleverly hint surnames during the Middle Ages.
One of the earliest text-only Pokepun threads outside of 4chan was posted on the Gamespot forums on May 30th, 2008. By June 24th, 2009, an image macro thread was posted on the Miscellaneous section of the BodyBuilding.com forums. Over the course of 2009, collections of these image macros appeared on the RWP forums, a single topic Tumblr and Urban Dictionary.
In 2010, Pokepun image macros were extensively covered by single topic blogs on MemeBase and Blogspot, in addition to instances appearing on FunnyJunk, the Escapist and Smosh. Currently As of November 2011, there are two active Tumblr tags for these image macros, Pokemon Puns and Pokepuns.
Search queries for both “Pokemon Puns” and “Pokepuns” began in February 2009, a month after the image macros began appearing. They both peaked in December 2009 and December 2010 possibly coinciding with the holiday season and people receiving Pokemon games as presents.
The Escapist –