From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
Super Effective is a webcomic by Canadian cartoonist Scott Ramsoomair. It is based on the events of Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen, and was first published on April 23, 2008.
Ramsoomair is also known for his main comic, VG Cats, which parodies many video games, including Pokémon. Super Effective is devoted to the Pokémon series, and the storyline focuses on Red's journey through Kanto. Some comics do deviate slightly from the plot of the games, and this is primarily for humor purposes.
The humor is based around jokes and questions commonly found in the fandom, such as the fact no one has seen Brock's eyes, and Professor Oak doesn't know the name of his grandson. A majority of the jokes are focused towards mature readers only.
Unlike most webcomics, Super Effective does not have set days on which it is updated, and is published on an irregular basis. This is largely due to Ramsoomair's other commitments, such as VG Cats, but has also been credited to the time it takes to produce a single strip.
The main character of the comic, Red is based on the player character of FireRed and LeafGreen. His starter Pokémon was a Charmander. Like his game counterpart, he is a silent protagonist and thus largely speaks through his actions. Unlike a majority of the other characters in the series, Red is the most rational and notices the obvious faults of other characters in the series. He made his debut in the first strip.
Unlike his counterparts in other media, Professor Oak is portrayed as a man with little common sense, unable to remember his grandson's name or determine whether Red was a boy or a girl. He provides both Red and Blue with a Pokémon and Pokédex, giving them the task of completing it. He made his debut in the first strip.
Professor Oak's grandson, also known as Douche. Like the character on which he was based, Blue has had a strong rivalry with Red since they were babies. He also hates his grandfather for things such as forgetting his name, giving him a Squirtle which didn't know any water type attacks and forcing him on a quest to complete the Pokédex. He takes his catch phrase "Smell ya later!" literally, and takes the time to smell Red after a Pokémon battle. He made his debut in the second strip.
Red's Pokédex has a personality of its own. It has a unique sense of humor with a tendency to offer immature suggestions for nicknames like "Butts" and "Penis".
Based on Leaf. Her starter Pokémon is a Bulbasaur. She happens to display an interest in its "tentacles" that she may or may not be kidding about. She has a peppy and bright personality, but she has only appeared in two strips so far, and therefore not much is known about her yet. She was introduced in the 29th strip.
In addition to the five main characters, additional characters have been included in one or more strips. These include Brock, the first Gym Leader; the man in the Poké Mart; a Bug Catcher; and the old man who teachers players how to catch Pokémon.
A number of the jokes in the series are based around common jokes, questions, and criticisms of the games themselves. More often than not, the jokes are one-off 'on the spot' jokes that make their point, but don't interfere with the story. This list contains some of the more notable fandom jokes referenced in the series.
- Strip #1: Professor Oak cannot distinguish between a boy and a girl.
- Strip #2: Professor Oak doesn't know his grandson's name.
- Strip #5: Professor Oak gives kids expensive equipment (Pokédex) and sends them on a lengthy journey (catching all known Pokémon) by themselves.
- Strip #13: The old man from Viridian City who teaches you how to catch Pokémon, despite the player usually already having caught Pokémon by that point.
- Strip #22: The common frustration of finding a rare Pokémon, but having no Poké Balls to catch it with.
- Strip #24: The realization that any Trainer who started with Charmander will be at a major disadvantage in the first gym.
Ramsoomair creates all of his comics, including Super Effective using both hand-drawn art and computer software. By scanning his images (or drawing them on a graphics tablet), Adobe Photoshop or a similar tool can be used to darken the lines and finalize the image. It typically takes many hours to make a single comic. Drawing alone is between three and nine hours, and the computer work takes a similar length of time. Rasoomair cites this as one of the reasons why Super Effective and his other comics are not updated at a higher frequency.