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Gym Leader Review: Erika

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Overview: Debuting in Generation 1, Erika is a Grass Type Gym Leader whose Gym Leader tittle is The Nature Loving Princess. Erika is one of the few Gym Leaders to keep her Japanese name, her name being based on a genus of plants I believe. Erika is also noted for her traditional Japanese beauty, innocent appearance, along with being a mascot for Bulbagarden alongside Bulbasaur.

Gameplay: Erika has used a wide variety of Pokemon over the course of the Pokemon franchise, having appeared in every Generation. Erika uses Grass Types, and her strategy seems to be handicapping your team with status moves that induce Poison, Sleep, and Paralyzing the foe, before she starts to use decent Grass Type moves, or moves that sap health from the foe. In her debut, Erika's team consisted of Victreebel, Tangela, and Vileplume. Each one of her Pokemon have high special attack, and do well in the sun, which can make her a bit of a pain to battle. At the time, the best Pokemon to use were Bug, Fire, and Flying Types, but because of the lack of strong Bug Type moves and Pokemon (Not to mention the fact that two of her Pokemon are part Poison Type) Fire and Flying Types were your best bet. This Battle was even more challenging for those who chose Squirtle as their starter. However, if you have the right Pokemon under belt, and carry a few full heals, you should manage to win without to much trouble.

Concept: Since Pokemon is a Japanese Franchise, it's no wonder they'd add a beautiful girl in a kimono. Erika is meant to represent traditional Japanese beauty, and Erika is one of those girls whose naturally beautiful without trying. Erika is probably one of the most unique Gym Leaders given some of her quirks. Quirk No 1. Erika only uses Pokemon she deems beautiful or cute, but her definition of those words don't quite match up with other peoples. Erika uses Pokemon, that only a hard core Botanist could love. Quirk No 2. Erika has a habit of becoming distracted easily, and goes into spells where she dozes off. The cause of this is unknown. Erika could use drugs, she could suffer from narcolepsy, or it could simply be caused by breathing in the pollen of her Grass Pokemon. Quirk No 3. Her Gym is filled completely with Girl Trainers. No boys are found, period. (Save for the creepy old man in front of the gym spying on them.) Personality wise, Erika is just as beautiful on the inside as she on the outside. Often depicted as very friendly and kind through out the various Pokemon related media, (Despite being depicted as somewhat cold in the Anime.)

My Reception: Erika is just one of those girls whose hard not to love. On paper, she would seem like the perfect girl, but when you throw in some of her quirks, you manage to make her more human without ruining that beauty. In a way, her quirks almost make her cuter and more likable. Probably one of the best Gym Leaders introduced, and probably one of most recognizable Gym Leaders in the Pokemon Franchise. I obviously give Erika 5 out of 5 stars!

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  1. Enzap's Avatar
    My headcanon is that Erika would be one of the most powerful trainers in Kanto if she didn't doze off so easily. lol


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