Puppet theater music video about biting a Pokémon’s tail is a surprising tear-jerker.

Along with video game installments and anime episodes, the Pokémon franchise is starting to rack up an impressive tally of songs. Series mascot Pikachu, Japanese dessert inspiration Magikarp, and mysterious newcomer Mimikyu have all had the musical spotlight shined on them, but Slowpoke, or Yadon, as he’s called in Japan, has also been getting plenty of attention.

First came the lethargic water/psychic-type’s reggae image song, which was later re-released with an official English version. Now, Slowpoke is once again the subject of a song, sung from the perspective of oft-overlooked Pokémon Shellder, titled “Sweet Temptation” (“Amai Yuwaku” in Japanese).

Voiced by singer and anime voice actress Kana Hanazawa (whom some fans may recognize as the voice of female player character Haruka/May from the Pokémon Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald video games), the video shows Shellder on a beautiful secluded beach. That atmosphere of wistful loneliness, however, extends to Shellder’s heart.

See, this Shellder has a crush on Slowpoke, and while Slowpoke is best known for his good-natured laziness, his other defining characteristic is that his tail has a delicious flavor. Since he’s so laid-back, he doesn’t mind if other Pokémon chew on it for the flavor, but this presents a dilemma for Shellder, because Slowpoke’s evolved form, Slowbro, is unfailingly depicted with a Shellder biting his tail.

Because of this, the smitten Shellder is worried that if she bites Slowpoke’s tail, he’ll evolve, and won’t be the same Slowpoke she knows and loves anymore (the Shellder shown chomping down on Slowpoke also has a different appearance from the normal Shellder). Unsure of how to reconcile the turbulent swirl of emotions in her heart, Shellder does the only thing she can, letting her voice ring out and singing:

This sweet temptation is calling to me
That boy has changed, into Slowbro

This sweet temptation is calling to me
And the Slowbro changed into Slowking

We promised we’d stay just like we were
But everyone chewed on your tail, Slowpoke

They all say it’s so sweet and delicious
But I’m scared, scared of your tail, Slowpoke

I probably won’t be able to stay like I am anymore
I don’t think I’ll ever be able to leave him

But I want to bite Slowpoke’s tail
Slowpoke’s tail

Slowpoke’s taaaaaail

Between Kanazawa’s earnest performance and the impressive production video values, it’s actually pretty hard to tell how seriously the creators expect people to take it. On the one hand, it’s a silly song about a Pokémon appendage and evolution. But on the other hand, it’s a bittersweet moment in which the singer, as she looks back on a blissfully carefree infatuation, opens up about her fears for what comes next in the relationship, and her greater fear of missing out on something wonderful.

So good job, Pokémon Puppet Theater. You’ve got my pleasantly confused, and also humming “Sweet Temptation” to myself.

Source: Otakomu
Images: YouTube/ポケモン公式YouTubeチャンネル

Follow Casey on Twitter, where this isn’t the first time he’s had an anime song stuck in his head, and probably won’t be the last either.