|Pokémon series character|
|First game||Pokémon Red and Blue|
|Designed by||Ken Sugimori|
|Voiced by (English)||Eric Stuart|
|Voiced by (Japanese)||Shinichirō Miki (Ash/Satoshi's)
Yūji Ueda (Zippo, Ritchie/Hiroshi's)
Charmeleon, known in Japan as Lizardo (リザード Rizādo ), is a Pokémon species in Nintendo and Game Freak's Pokémon franchise. Created by Ken Sugimori, Charmeleon first appeared in the video games Pokémon Red and Blue and subsequent sequels, later appearing in various merchandise, spinoff titles and animated and printed adaptations of the franchise. He is based on a Komodo Dragon.
Design and characteristics
Charmeleon was one of several different designs conceived by Game Freak's character development team and finalized by Ken Sugimori for the first generation of Pocket Monsters games Red and Green, which were localized outside of Japan as Pokémon Red and Blue. Originally called "Lizardo" in Japanese, Nintendo decided to give the various Pokémon species "clever and descriptive names" related to their appearance or features when translating the game for western audiences as a means to make the characters more relatable to American children. It was eventually changed to "Charmeleon", which takes from a combination of the words "char", relating to fire, and "chameleon".
Charmeleon, known as the Flame Pokémon, are bipedal lizard Pokémon, that have yellow bellies and soles, three clawed feet and hands, and bear a flame at the end of their tails. They are darker-skinned than Charmander (now red instead of orange), now possess a bumpy horn on their heads, and take on a more intimidating appearance. Indeed, Charmeleon are excessively savage and short-tempered by nature, and they are powerful fighters due to their temperament. The flame on its tail may burn a bluish white when the Pokémon is excited, and the air temperature often raises to very high levels when the tail flame is waved around.
In the video games
In the video game series, Charmeleon evolves from Charmander and eventually into Charizard. It first appears in Pokémon Red and Blue, and their remakes Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen. It appeared in several sequels, including Pokémon Gold and Silver, Pokémon Diamond, and Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver. It appears in several other video games, including Pokémon Pinball, the Pokémon Mystery Dungeon games, Pokémon Ranger, and Pokémon Snap.
In other media
In the animated series, Ash Ketchum's Charmander evolved into a Charmeleon after stopping a stampede of Exeggutor. Afterwards, its personality is temporarily changed and ignored Ash's commands, as well as using Flamethrower on him many times. It soon evolved into a Charizard during a fight with an Aerodactyl in order to keep up with the winged foe (not so much to save the Pokémon's captive, Ash). The evolution did not improve Charizard's personality in any way, and Ash struggled for some time to get the Pokémon to listen to him once more. In the Pokémon Adventures manga, Blue receives a Charmander from his grandfather Professor Oak. It evolves into a Charmeleon, and when Blue is possessed by a Gastly in the Lavender Tower, so is Charmeleon. Blue's Charmeleon is eventually released from its possession only to be faced down by an Arbok, owned by Koga. Charmeleon tricked Koga by using a zombie Psyduck to deflect Arbok's acid attack before literally slicing the Arbok in half with his tail. Blue later appears with an evolved Charizard and gains access to Saffron City by helping to disable a barrier created by a Mr. Mime.
Since appearing in the Pokémon series, Charmeleon has received generally positive reception. It has been featured in several forms of merchandise, including figures, plush toys, and the Pokémon Trading Card Game. Charmeleon, along with Pikachu, was featured as one of two Pokémon-themed costumes released in 1999.
Grey School of Wizardry faculty member Ash DeKirk compared Charmeleon, along with Charmander and Charizard as "fire-breathing dragons". Author Loredana Lipperini described Charmeleon as an "awkward teenager, full of potential but also of uncertainty." The SCP Journal commented that the Charmander line, which includes Charmeleon, represent the three stages of a dragon's life. Author Joseph Jay Tobin used the line as an example of a line whose names are "rich in cute puns and in a pseudo-Linnean attention to family and genus". GamesRadar editor Brett Elston compared Charmeleon to Ivysaur in how they both lack the cutesy appeal of their previous forms, but are not as intimidating as their next forms. He also comments that Charmeleon, in spite of being named after the lizard chameleon, "sticks to one lifestyle - burning rage." In a poll by Official Nintendo Magazine, Charmeleon was voted as one of the best Fire-type Pokémon. They stated "Charmeleon may have lost Charmander's cheery smile but it gained so much in evolution". The Daily Cardinal called Charmeleon the "ugliest dragon of the bunch".
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- Pokédex: It has a barbaric nature. In battle, it whips its fiery tail around and slashes away with sharp claws. Game Freak. Pokémon Silver. (Nintendo). Game Boy. (2000-10-15)
- Pokédex: Tough fights could excite this Pokémon. When excited, it may blow out bluish-white flames. Game Freak. Pokémon Yellow. (Nintendo). Game Boy. (1999-10-19)
- Pokédex: When it swings its burning tail, it elevates the temperature to unbearably high levels. Game Freak. Pokémon Red and Blue. (Nintendo). Game Boy. (1998-09-30)
- Kusaka, Hidenori; Mato (August 5, 2001). "Chapter 28". Peace of Mime. Pokémon Adventures. Volume 3: Saffron City Siege. VIZ Media LLC. pp. 5–19. ISBN 1-56931-560-4.
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- Generazione Pokémon: i bambini e l'invasione planetaria dei nuovi ... - Loredana Lipperini - Google Boeken. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- SCP Journal - Google Boeken. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Pikachu S Global Adventure: The Rise and Fall of Pokémon - Google Boeken. Books.google.com. Retrieved 2013-06-25.
- Brett Elston. "The complete Pokemon RBY pokedex, part 1, Pokemon Diamond / Pearl DS Features". GamesRadar. p. 5.
- Thomas East (29-Sep-2010). "Nintendo Feature: Best Fire Pokémon". Official Nintendo Magazine. Retrieved 2011-04-11.
- "The Daily Cardinal - University of Wisconsin-Madison". Daily-cardinal. Retrieved 2013-06-25.