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Updated Feb 28, 2019 at 06:52AM EST by andcallmeshirley.

Added May 15, 2010 at 06:56PM EDT by Jax.

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Pokemon Black & White grass type starter Snivy (nicknamed Smugleaf by fans)


Smugleaf is a fan name given to the 495th Pokémon that functions as the Grass-type starter for the 5th generation of Pokemon games. Because of its seemingly conceited facial expression, the character was dubbed Smugleaf on /v/ board of 4chan and on DeviantArt. Although its official name was later revealed to be Snivy, or Tsutarja in Japanese, the fanmade name stuck and the character soon came to receive the most attention out of the three starter Pokémons.

Because of its overwhelming presence on game-related imageboards, referencing Smugleaf has been also associated with trolling and forced memes, especially among those outside of Pokemon fandom.


On May 9th, 2010, the 5th Generation starter Pokémon were revealed on Pokémon Sunday. The starters for Pokémon Black and White included the Grass-type Snivy (Then called Tsutarja), the Fire-type Tepig (then called Pokabu, and the Water-type Oshawott (then called Mijumaru). However, Snivy (whose name was unknown at the time) began to rise above the others, as described as this post on Kotaku:

Pokémon's 'Smugleaf': A Meme In The Making*
It's been a couple days since the new starter Pokémon for the upcoming Black/White were leaked in a Japanese magazine, CoroCoro. But already, we may have a new meme.

The grass starter Pokémon, whose Japanese name is Tsutaja, has risen above the others and become an overnight internet sensation, inspiring conversation and not a small amount of fan art.

Due to his half-closed eyes and apparent smirk, the green starter is quickly becoming known as "Smugleaf" or "Grinleaf" by English-speaking fans. "Smugleaf is the new trollface!" is a new rallying cry, referencing the face a person might put on while trolling on a forum. And looking at that new Pokémon's self-contented grin, it isn't hard to see the appeal.

(Source: Kotaku)

However, some people believe this Kotaku article "killed" the Smugleaf meme, in a way reminiscent of the Family Guy Effect.

/v/ rage

Popularity & Search Volume

Smugleaf compared to other starter Pokémon in search volume:

Image Derivatives

Fan art started appearing on DeviantArt and image macros started appearing on /v/ before spreading to other boards.

How does a legendary time traveling pokemon NOT have the ability to rewind a battle to before it was caught? I guess you wanted to give up your old life, huh Cel? Heh heh... U mad?

Smugleaf by Citrus--Rain (formerly Shouting Ryan) on DeviantArt.

Smugleaf's appearance has also been compared to the character Excalibur from the manga/anime "Soul Eater". Because of this, fan art has been created that features Smugleaf wearing Excalibur's signature top hat and cane, as seen here:

My legend begins in the 12th century.。。

Smugleaf has also been spotted on Meme Generator and has reached a peak of being in the Top tier:



Fans claim that Smugleaf has become the new trollface and the new Mudkip as well. Because of this, Smugleaf is sometimes seen as a "forced" method of trolling by Smugleaf fans.

□ You're all virgins. Smugleaf 07/24/10(Sat)21-19 No. 1734625 And you sicken me Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat)21:19 No. 1734633 Pokemon is for virgins too Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat]21:20 No.1734642 This Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat)21:21 No.1734648 1734633 Exactly, even been to vp/ OP? All teh tripfags are being like aw dude no youll get a girl to each other Smugleaf 07/24/10(Sat)21:22 No.1734657 I have a Ph D in Richness You have a section 8 housing? And toys? dignified rofl- Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat)21:23 No.1734672 Reported for asshattery and general agent-provocateur-ness Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat21:25 No. 1734681 Smugleaf is f------ raiding 4chan Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat)21:25 No. 1734682 2173465 What's that, some US ghetto term? I'm not from a country where the majority are f------ poor n------ Anonymous 07/24/10(Sat]21:26 No. 1734699 Wow Looks like everyone's mad. Well done, Smuggo and IBEER20FsSI 07/24/10(Sat)21:26 No.1734701 File 1280021218isg-(89 KB, 1228x768, 382Kyogre1680x1050 jpg) 1734657 Stop being so smug, you f-----!
Smugleaf trolling in action

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