Popular internet memes based on the Pokemon character Slowpoke.
Slowpoke is a Pokemon-themed reaction image response popularized on 4chan as a way to troll other users. The accompanying text often uses the line “Hey guys, did you hear…” before presenting a piece of old or oversaturated information.
The character of Slowpoke, a large pink Water/Psychic type creature that resembles a cross between a salamander and a hippopotamus, first appeared in the original two Pokemon games Red and Blue. It is known for being less bright than other creatures and can easily get distracted.
An image of a Slowpoke on a white background was first introduced on 4chan, specifically the /b/ (random) board, as a method of trolling, accompanied by a post that was clearly untimely or no longer relevant in current news. One of the earliest archived posts featuring Slowpoke was captioned “Christmas hat!” and uploaded on December 26th, 2006.
Over the course of 2006 and 2007, the Slowpoke was used in several threads across 4chan boards including one on /b/ from May 4th, 2007, in which the animal takes nearly 40 images to comes into the frame. On May 1st, 2007, an image of Slowpoke became the 26,000,001st post on 4chan, which was recognized as the official 26 million GET by the Lurkmore Wiki.
Using Slowpoke as a method of breaking old news has also been seen as a trope on the VG Cats spinoff webcomic Super Effective beginning in 2009 and in Reddit comment threads since 2010.
Usage on 4chan
Slowpoke is often used in combo threads, when people attempt to post three consecutive pieces of the character in a row. One of the earliest archived threads with a successful Slowpoke combo took place on April 22nd, 2007 and resulted in the original poster getting banned by moot for posting too quickly.
In May 2011, an advice animal version was created, placing slowpoke on a vectored background colored with two shades of pink. It was first submitted to Reddit on May 22nd. As of February 2012, there are over 40,000 instances of Slowpoke on Memegenerator, where it is ranked #26 of all time, and over 12,000 instances on Quickmeme. In the Advice Animals subreddit, there are hundreds of Slowpoke threads.
Between May and July of 2011, collections of these images were shared on humor sites Smosh, the Bigster and Ranker. They are also popular on Pokememes, Memebase and Tumblr.
Slowpoke is often seen as a subject in Pokemon fanart, with nearly 6700 pieces on deviantArt. A Tumblr fan art blog, Ask Slowpoke, began in August 2011 featuring a drawn version of the character answering questions from the community.
Search for the Pokemon had a small peak in June 2005, about two months after the release of Pokemon Emerald in the US.
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