The raging wave! the master of Water types, N

Nessa

Part of a series on Pokémon Sword and Shield. [View Related Entries]

Updated Aug 12, 2020 at 11:01AM EDT by andcallmeshirley.

Added Jun 12, 2019 at 12:20PM EDT by Adam.

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About

Nessa is a gym leader set to appear in the upcoming Pokémon Sword and Shield video games. After her cameo in the Nintendo Direct for E3 2019, she quickly developed a massive fandom, as fans created memes and fan art about the character, similar to their response to Sonia.

Origin

At E3 2019, during Nintendo's Direct presentation, it announced that a playable demo was at E3 that year, and that players could challenge the game's Water-type Gym leader, Nessa (shown below).



Spread

Fans were quick to create fan art for the character after her reveal. Twitter user @AkaiRiot[1] posted art that gained over 6,000 retweets and 24,000 likes (shown below, left). Twitter user @ScruffyTurtles[2] did the same, gaining over 2,600 retweets and 10,000 likes (shown below, right).


Aai + + +

Many also joked about how the character was bound to be Rule 34'd. Redditor Manny4044[3] posted a You Are Already Dead joke about the character being Rule 34'd, gaining over 3,600 points in /r/Animemes. Redditor Steelerskc12[4] also made a Rule 34 joke on /r/animemes (shown below, right).


34 Nes you are already p--- Pokémon dev: Rule 34: The raging wave! It's the master of Water types, Nessa!

The art jokes were further highlighted by Nessa's popularity shortly after Sonia's announcement and respective popularity spike less than a week prior, with many memes pointing out how attention shifted away from Sonia following Nessa's announcement. Redditor u/ZomicN3rf[13] posted a Friendship Ended With Mudasir edit, gaining over 50 points, Tumblr user aiaikawa[14] posted a Fairly OddParents edit gaining over 2,100 notes and Twitter user @MinaCreamu[15] a comic about it gaining over 3,600 retweets and 17,000 likes in less than 2 weeks (shown below, left to right).


Friendshin onped with Sonya Now Nessa smy loest frdend AH Giani CARS dte Deal! You're my new waifu W GO AHEAD. TAKE ALL THE PHOTOS YOu WANT! TEE HEE HEE! WANNA SEE MORE? Gase Mina Creamo 6/12/19 CCS

Whitewashing Controversy

On June 12th, 2019, Twitter user @Anonemose[5] posted fan art of Nessa in which they simply reposted the official Nessa artwork but gave her a lighter skin palette, claiming they "fixed" her (shown below, left). This was possibly done in parody of artists who post their versions of artwork claiming they "fixed" a character. The user stated in a followup tweet that it was intended to be satirical (shown below, middle). Users @HappaBadger outlined the type of post @Anonemose was intending to satirize (shown below, right).


@Anonemose hey @NintendoAmerica I just fixed Nessa, please hire me #PokemonSwordShield #Nessa #Pokemon 8:52 AM Jun 12, 2019 Twitter Web Client 杏子。 @Anonemose going to mute this S A T I RIC tweet, good night to everyone who replied 6:37 PM Jun 12, 2019 Twitter Web Client TheHentaiChrist @HappaBadger Replying to @Raging loser1 and @Anonemose Dude do you know the context is? This is what he's parodying/satirizing the whole fixed it posts. FARTIST @Hamu Bear I made her look less....Ugh Hire me, Nintendo~ t 4K O477 1 I Are Juanpool cuz we Is JuanPool OMistahMahvel Fellow Replying to ramos isaak I fixed it for you. You don't need to maker a man to make her tough, intimidating and battle worn. Mine has a scar and shaved head. Yours is a dude. 7:40 PM Jun 17, 2019 Twitter for Android

However the image already led to a wave of backlash from the fan art community who saw the user's post as racist, "improving" her by making her skin lighter. The Twitter account for the podcast Build Casters said "@anonemose
is a Racist and Anti-Black Dickhead. We are sick and fucking tired of the Anti-Blackness that permeates both Anime and Gaming culture and it needs to fucking stop," gaining over 60 retweets and 230 likes (shown below, left). User @hyperpan posted a clownposting response, gaining over 330 likes (shown below, right).


Build Casters @BuildCasters We're not usually ones to call people out, but @anonemose is a Racist and Anti-Black D-------. We are sick and f------ tired of the Anti-Blackness that permeates both Anime and Gaming culture and it needs to f------ stop. Thread Face-off against Nessa Gym Leader and Warer-type Pokéman expert in WPokemonSwardShielo She appears calm and collected, but unleashas her competiive spirit and indomitable will when overwheiming oppanerts with powarful 87 MAnoeoie hey @NintendoAmerica l just fixed Nessa, please hie me Water-type moves #PoemanSwordShiald #Nessa #Polasman awordshield poemon.com/en-us Twet your y 3:07 PM Jun 12, 2019 Twitter for iPad HyperDragonFrying Pan @hyper pan Replying to @Anonemose and @NintendoAmerica You didn't fix anything you dropped this CLOWNS LICENSE

The whitewashing debate extended beyond @Anonemose incident, as other pieces of Nessa fan art were accused of whitewashing the character. For example, a piece by @Naju0517[6] was accused of whitewashing the character by several users (shown below, left). This led to a debate on if the artist believed they were improving the character by making her lighter or drawing her in a more pastel style consistent with their other artworks. User @itmethanh[7] tweeted that the argument "it's just a palette choice" was a losing argument in the whitewashing debate, citing, "the fact that they thought choosing that particular color bc it's 'pretty' or 'fits best' with their scheme is telling of internalized beliefs of how dark skin should be portrayed" (shown below, right). The debate was covered in a thread on /r/OutOfTheLoop. [8]


najuco 3E -27a @Naju0517 ルリナさん. Translate Tweet iu0517/status/1139183941758283777/nhoto/1 Cassandra was right @itmethanh any time an artist says 'it's not whitewashing it's a color palette choice' they already lost. the fact that they thought choosing that particular color bc it's 'pretty' or 'fits best' with their scheme is telling of internalized beliefs of how dark skin should be portrayed 3:22 PM Jun 15, 2019 Twitter Web App 37 Retweets 107 Likes Cassandra was right @itmethanh Jun 15 Replying to @itmethanh it doesnthave to be picked with malicious intent. whitewashing is simply an act: is the skin tone lighter than what the source material shows? if u can't portray dark skin with ur stylized color choices then draw any of the million other light skin characters. this isn't for u 14

Eventually the controversy spiraled into artists intentionally creating satirical pieces where Nessa was given a wide range of skin colors or made invisible, such as the pieces by BOW[9] and @Ewe_we01[10] (shown below, left 2 images). Later, artists also created pieces where they purposely added even more well known racist caricatures, such as drawing Nessa as a chimpanzee or in a SS-outfit by respectively @Evulart[11] and @itsukarine[12] (shown below, right two images). Each of these tweets managed to gather thousands of likes and retweets within days of being posted with varying reactions.


gerk @Ewe we 0 049 N essa 049 frulthen LL

Various Examples


Friendshin onped with Sonya Now Nessa smy loest frdend AH Quieres? Co Zene missileten@twitter D49 Bert

Search Interest

External References

[1] Twitter – @AkaiRiot

[2] Twitter – @ScruffyTurtles

[3] Reddit – IT BEGINS

[4] Reddit – They always rule 34 art

[5] Twitter – @anonemose

[6] Twitter – @naju0517

[7] Twitter – @itmethanh

[8] Reddit – /r/outoftheloop

[9] Pixiv – POW

[10] Twitter – @Ewe_we01

[11] Twitter – @Evulart

[12] Twitter – @itsukarine

[13] Reddit – r/pokemonmemes

[14] Tumblr – aiaikawa

[15] Twitter – @MinaCreamu

Recent Videos 9 total

Recent Images 528 total


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