Pikachu is an electric mouse. Not an electronic mouse, like you use with your computer, but a yellow mouse that stores electricity in its body. It’s one of the 400-plus Pokemon in existence, and probably the most annoyingly cute one out there. Facing off against the little rat will be the Punisher, also known as Frank Castle. Frank is a war vet whose family got killed as part of a mob war. He basically lost it and has since decided to wage a one-man war on crime where he is the judge, jury, and executioner of the criminals he targets.
Why does the Punisher go after Pikachu? Pikachu is, after all, just a small rodent who has never harmed a soul. The Punisher has his reasons, although they’re somewhat complex. Pikachu has been the face of a franchise tha began in 1994 and is, with the exception of the Mario games, the most popular video game franchise of all time. It has allowed Nintendo to flourish despite a decade or so of mismanagement. And, as anyone who has kept up with the video game industry over the last twenty years or so can attest, Nintendo is a pretty evil corporate body. Sure, it’s arguably not as evil as its competitors, Microsoft and Sony, but it’s still pretty unethical. Rather than hunt down the dozens of members of middle management who have contributed to Nintendo’s wickedness, the Punisher decides to target the key franchise players who have given the company its success at the expense of so many innocent people’s livelihoods. The process starts with Pikachu. But how can Frank Castle, a mere mortal, dare to stand against a rodent that, however cute it may be, can change weather patterns and call lightning out of the sky?
In my significant pikachu research (which consists entirely of playing Super Smash Brothers Melee dozens of times over), there are two ways to beat Pikachu. One is to go the Donkey Kong route of hit it, hit it again, hit it into the ground, and then throw it off of a cliff. The other is to gun the little bugger down with a machinegun before he can get close to you. The Punisher opts for a variation of the second option. He stakes out a power plant, sets some bait, and then hides away with a sniper rifle. When Pikachu shows up to eat…whatever it is that Pikachu eats…the Punisher lines up his shot and fires. The shot echoes through the power plant, and Pikachu hits the floor, his cute little brains leaking out the bullet wound in his head and the smell of singed yellow fur all around. Round One goes to the Punisher.
Pikachi can’t actually be dead…can he? Despite finding some comfort in the growing pool of blood around the rodent, Frank Castle has fought way too many super-powered foes who have a habit of getting up after they’ve died. To make sure, he gets into a specially-designed rubber commando suit to block out electricity. Then he hops into his war van and speeds down the wide hallways of the power plant, running Pikachu over. Once that’s done, he backs over the little rat. He repeats this process five or six times. Short of nuking the planet from orbit, it’s the best way he can be sure.
So yeah…Pikachu is really dead. Round Two goes to the Punisher.
Not satisfied with simply leaving Pikachu dead as a doornail, the Punisher ties the rat’s corpse to the back of his van and drives around with the yellow furball dragging along behind him – a warning to all those other Nintendo characters to let them know that he’s coming for them. During the Punisher’s victory lap, he drives by some strange rocks in the road. He thinks nothing of them. One of the rocks hits pikachu’s corpse, however, and it happens to be a thudnerstone. The radiation from the strange rock triggers a mutation in the dead rat, and Pikachu becomes Raichu. (Raichu, as I mentioned earlier, is the vastly cooler version of the stupid rat.) The shock the the pokemon’s system revives it, giving it just enough life to gnaw through the ropes on the back of Frank Castle’s van and free itself. The Punisher sees this turn of events through his rearview mirror, and gets out of the van to finish the rodent off once and for all. He figures he’s well-protected, with an electricity-resistant suit, and therefore should have no problem putting the already-injured Raichu down. What he doesn’t count on, however, is the increased speed and strength of the evolved critter. Before the Punisher can pull the trigger, Raichu leaps past the barrel of the Frank’s gun and latches onto his face. Then he goes all The Cheat on him, and proceeds to gnaw his face off. With a newly found taste for human blood, Raichu heads off into the night, looking for his next victim.
Round Three and the match go to Raichu…but not Pikachu, who died. And certainly not the Punisher, who got his face torn off. It’s either some sort of bizarre draw or a win for Pikachu. I don’t know which. The whole instant evolution to win the fight thing has me a bit confused, and I’m the one who wrote the damned thing!
You know what? Vin Disel drops out of the sky with an atomic laser gun and fries everybody. Then he goes off to play some role-playing games and rock out on an electric keytar. There. Now THAT’S an ending. Round Three and the fight go to Vin Disel. Hurrah!