Now that the following information is out in the world, it can never be taken back: Ryan Reynolds is Pikachu now. He will be voicing the electric mouse in the upcoming Detective Pikachu movie, and if you think that’s absurd, just wait until you see who we think should portray the rest of the original 150 Pokémon.
What follows is the definitive and infallible guide to who should portray every one of the original 151 Pokémon were they to be involved in a live action movie. There is no denying that these are the correct choices because of how they were chosen: Some of the actors have physical similarities to their counterpart monsters, others are based more on attitude, some just have rhyming names, and yet others might not make a lick of sense (like the ones who aren’t even alive anymore, for instance). So yes, it’s definitive.It’s a wild journey we’re about to go on right now, so join us!
1-3. Bulbasaur, Ivysaur, and Venusaur – Ron Funches, George Takei, and William Shatner
Funches’ high voice would be great for a mini dinosaur thing, and as for Takei and Shatner, their voices just seemed like funny next steps to take.
4-6. Charmander, Charmeleon, and Charizard – Emma Stone, Dakota Johnson, and Scarlett Johansson
Charizard is elegant and powerful, and so are the voices of these strong and gorgeous leading ladies.
7-9. Squirtle, Wartortle, and Blastoise – Michael Cera, Jesse Eisenberg, and Andy Samberg
This is based solely on a meme from a few years ago.
10-12. Caterpie, Metapod, and Butterfree – Millie Bobby Brown, Shannon Purser, and Winona Ryder
The ladies of Stranger Things experience a lot of growth and quickly during the series (except for Barb in Season 1, that is), and so do these bug Pokémon.
13-15. Weedle, Kakuna, and Beedrill – Jacob Tremblay, Cole Sprouse, and Bill Hader
This is another age progression type of evolution, and Hader as an aggressive bee just works.
16-18. Pidgey, Pidgeoto, and Pidgeot – Emma Roberts, Emma Watson, and Emma Thompson
The Pidgey family tree all have very similar names, so now, I present three Emmas.
19-20. Rattata and Raticate – Rhys Darby and Hugh Jackman
Darby would make a great mouse that pops up in tall grass when you don’t want it to, while Raticate is more formidable (and Jackman’s also Australian).
21-22. Spearow and Fearow – Rob Huebel and Will Arnett
I can picture both of these guys pulling off slicked back hair/feathers.
23-24. Ekans and Arbok – Seth MacFarlane
MacFarlane’s Stewie Griffin voice lends itself perfectly to voicing a snake, and it’s a voice so nice we’re using it twice.
26. Raichu – Danny Devito
DeVito is the Pikachu that we never got, so now he’s the Raichu we deserve.
27-28. Sandshrew and Sandslash – Kyle Gass and Jack Black
Let’s get Tenacious D back in the building as two ferocious balls of energy.
29-31. Nidoran (Female), Nidorina, and Nidoqueen – SZA, Solange Knowles, Beyonce
Beyonce is of course the queen, and let’s get her sister and another talented R&B singer as her stepping stones.
32-34. Nidoran (Male), Nidorino, and Nidoking – Nick Jonas, Nick Kroll, Nicholas Cage
This is a Pidgey situation: The Nicks are Nidos now.
35-36. Clefairy and Clefable – Zooey Deschanel and Natalie Portman
Two of film’s most prominent manic pixie dreams girls should definitely be the fairy creatures from the moon.
37-38. Vulpix and Ninetales – Juno Temple and Olivia Wilde
There’s not much to say about this one beyond that it just feels right, you know?
39-40. Jigglypuff and Wigglytuff – Betty White and Ronda Rousey
One is a gentle little thing, but with well-documented sass. The next is significantly tougher.
41-42. Zubat and Golbat – Kevin Hart and Melissa McCarthy
A couple of high-energy Pokémon who spend all day squawking and flapping around your head? I think this fits.
43-45. Oddish, Gloom, and Vileplume – Alia Shawkat, Portia de Rossi, and Jessica Walter
Maeby was the odd one out in Arrested Development, while de Rossi and Walter’s characters were probably pretty fragrant.
46-47. Paras and Parasect – Amy Adams and Isla Fisher
A couple of redheads that look similar playing a couple of redheads that look similar.
48-49. Venonat and Venomoth – Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch
Something about the Venonat family screams sophistication, so Sherlock and Watson should do the trick.
50-51. Diglet and Dugtrio – Bruce Willis and three of Bruce Willis
Diglet doesn’t have much going on in the hair department, and neither does Willis (or three of Bruce Willis).
52-53. Meowth and Persian – Justin Roiland
54-55. Psyduck and Golduck – Josh Gad and Liam Neeson
Josh Gad as the cuddly nebbish who evolves into a far more serious ass-kicker? That’s a movie in and of itself.
56-57. Mankey and Primeape – Joe Pesci and Lewis Black
These pent up bundles of rage will be played by two of the angriest dudes we’ve ever seen on screen.
58-59. Growlithe and Arcanine – Jai Courtney and Gerard Butler
These two are tough. That sentence applies to both the Pokémon and the actors.
60-62. Poliwag, Poliwhirl, and Poliwrath – Ryan Lochte, Greg Louganis, and Michael Phelps
Three of the most successful American water athletes of all time play one of the most underrated Pokémon evolutionary lines of all time.
63-65. Abra, Kadabra, and Alakazam – Teller, Ezra Miller, and Daniel Day-Lewis
These three are all magical in their own way. Teller’s role is especially fitting, considering how hard it is to get a word out of Abra before it teleports away.
66-68. Machop, Machoke, and Machamp – Vin Diesel, John Cena, and Dwayne Johnson
In the muscles category, here are three muscle dudes. Granted, Vin Diesel has proved he can voice something as tremendous as The Iron Giant and as tiny as Baby Groot, so he’d be a good pick for any of the three.
69-71. Bellsprout, Weepinbell, and Victreebell – Elle Fanning, Dakota Fanning, and Judy Greer
The Fannings may look delicate, but they’re mighty, and doesn’t Jude Greer look like she could be their mother, or at least their aunt or something?
72-73. Tentacool and Tentacruel – LL Cool J and Glenn Close
One’s cool, one’s cruel… la de Vil, that is.
74-76. Geodude, Graveler, and Golem – Josh Homme, Jack White, and Dave Grohl
These guys rock, so three of today’s best rockers fit the bill here.
77-78. Ponyta and Rapidash – Bryce Dallas Howard and Jessica Chastain
This is another redhead situation, and their flowing orange locks should make for perfect fiery manes.
79-80. Slowpoke and Slowbro – Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong
If any two Pokémon are chilled out stoners, we found ’em.
81-82. Magnemite and Magneton – Skrillex and Daft Punk
These robotic-sounding creatures are peas in a pod with these two electronic music acts.
83. Farfetch’d – Gilbert Gottfried
You’re already imagining Gottfried saying “Farfetch’d” in your head. It’s perfect.
84-85. Doduo and Dodrio – Abbi Glazer/Ilana Jacobson and Haim
The Broad City stars could hilariously share one bird body, and the Haim sisters probably feel like they already do sometimes.
86-87. Seel and Dewgong – Seal and Brenda Song
Seal is beyond obvious. Brenda Song is less so, but we’re committed to it.
88-89. Grimer and Muk – Terence Stamp and James Earl Jones
These two poison monsters ought to have deep, resonant voices, so we found a couple of those.
90-91. Shellder and Cloyster – Dave Chappelle and David Letterman
These reclusive celebrities will really enjoy their new shells.
92-94. Gastly, Haunter, and Gengar – Stephen King, Rob Zombie, and Tim Burton
Three masters of the horror-filled and terrifying were born to play ghost Pokémon, whether or not they’d admit it freely.
95. Onix – Brad Garrett
This one made my roommate laugh, so it sticks.
96-97. Drowzee and Hypno – Ben Stein and Stephen Wright
This Pokémon family’s MO is putting enemies to sleep, so how about the two drowsiest voices in showbiz?
98-99. Krabby and Kingler – Allen Crabbe and Ben Kingsley
You get it.
100-101. Voltorb and Electrode – Anthony Anderson and Leslie Jones
Two balls of energy that can explode at any second without warning.
102-103. Exeggcute and Exeggutor – Jaden Smith and Will Smith
Like father, like son.
104-105. Cubone and Marowak – Willow Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith
Like mother, like daughter!
106-107. Hitmonlee and Hitmonchan – Shannon Lee and Jackie Chan
Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan are the actors these Pokémon were actually named after! Since Bruce is no longer with us, his actor/martial artist daughter can fill in for him.
108. Lickitung – Zach Galifianakis
There’s no way Galifianakis shouldn’t play perhaps the goofiest first-generation Pokémon.
109-110. Koffing and Weezing – Seth Rogen and Jeff Garlin
Two raspy voices are what’s needed here, and these guys have the smoker’s cough we’re looking for.
111-112. Rhyhorn and Rhydon – Jason Statham and Dave Bautista
Rhyhorn and Rhydon are tough as nails, and here are a couple of action movie stars to do some damage in their honor.
113. Chansey – Chance The Rapper
The name fits, but Chance also makes people in the world feel better and it’s a great thing when he’s around. He’s not so rare, though, thankfully so.
114. Tangela – Russell Brand
This one is purely hair-based.
115. Kangaskhan – Oprah Winfrey
Kangaskhan is the ultimate mother Pokémon, and who is more nurturing than Oprah?
116-117. Horsea and Seadra – Miley Cyrus and Tilda Swinton
Swinton absolutely SCREAMS Seadra to me, and Cyrus seems like she’d be up to playing the first step to getting there.
118-119. Goldeen and Seaking – Daisy Ridley, Dame Judy Dench
The regal Seaking needs to be played by a legend, so its pre-evolution should be portrayed by somebody fresh-faced who feels like she’ll stick around.
120-121. Staryu and Starmie – Venus Williams and Serena Williams
They’re all great with spin, because of being spinning stars and because of tennis.
122. Mr. Mime – Taika Waititi
I originally thought Mr. Mime should have no voice actor since he’s a mime and shouldn’t talk, but the Pokémon actually does speak, so Waititi feels like the right fit for this kooky character.
123-128. Scyther, Jynx, Electabuzz, Magmar, Pinsir, and Tauros – Zach Woods, Amanda Crew, Thomas Middleditch, TJ Miller, Kumail Nanjiani, and Martin Starr
These are Pokémon I’ve always grouped together in my head, and I think the Silicon Valley cast is a surprisingly good fit for all of them.
129-130. Magikarp and Gyarados – Keenan Thompson and Al Pacino
Thompson would make great pathetic fish sounds, and Pacino would rightfully emerge as an angry water dragon that’s full of rage and tired of getting kicked around.
131. Lapras – Patrick Stewart
The most elegant Pokémon deserves the most elegant man in the history of film and television.
132. Ditto – James Franco
Franco can do almost anything, so he may as well be able to literally transform.
133-136. Eevee, Vaporeon, Jolteon, and Flareon – Taylor Swift, Katy Perry, Demi Lovato, and Ariana Grande
Taylor Swift felt like a natural fit for the cute little Eevee, which sent me on a pop star thread… but we should prepare for backstage spats.
137. Porygon – MacInTalk
The Apple computer voice HAS to be this virtual creature. There’s no other option that makes nearly this much sense.
138-141. Omanite and Omastar, and Kabuto and Kabutops – Colin Hanks and Tom Hanks, and Scott Eastwood, Clint Eastwood
Aww, more father-son love!
142. Aerodactyl – Björk
Playing a revived screeching dinosaur would hardly be the strangest thing Björk has ever done.
143. Snorlax – Sam Elliott
Doesn’t Snorlax look like he’d have some deep, gravel-voiced wisdom for you once he wakes up?
144-146. Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres – Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Maya Rudolph
Three legendary birds: Three legendary Saturday Night Live ladies.
147-149. Dratini, Dragonair, Dragonite – Kylie Jenner, Kendall Jenner, Kim Kardashian
The Jenners are revered for their beauty and style, and while Kardashian’s attributes are similar, she’s a different beast entirely.
150-151. Mewtwo and Mew – Morgan Freeman and Andy Serkis
Mewtwo is basically the God of Pokémon, so of course I chose Freeman. Meanwhile, if the mo-cap master took the rasp out of his voice, it could sound like a great little Mew.
That was a long journey that took a lot out of me, so now it’s your turn to do some heavy lifting: Let us know in the comments below what you think of this list, and what other actors and actresses you think would be good fits to play some of these Pokémon.
Featured image: The Pokémon Company
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