Poké Spotlight: Getting To Know Grimer Outside Of Pokémon GO

Part of the fun of the main series Pokémon games is the lore of each species, which Pokémon GO recreates with short descriptions in their Pokédex entries. However, looking into the roles these Pokémon play in other games, and even the anime, can enrich the experience of hunting these creatures in Niantic's mobile game. In honor of tonight's Grimer Spotlight Hour, let's take a deep dive into this Pokémon's lore.

Grimer in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic
Grimer in Pokémon GO. Credit: Niantic

Dex entry number 088, Grimer is a pure Poison-type species from the Kanto Region, introduced into the world of Pokémon with Generation One. This Pokémon can be encountered as either male or female. Referred to as the "Sludge Pokémon," this is what Grimer's Dex entry says:

Grimer's sludgy and rubbery body can be forced through any opening, however small it may be. This Pokémon enters sewer pipes to drink filthy wastewater.

Sheesh. That explains why it reeked so bad in the anime. But we'll get there.

Grimer is the first stage of a two-stage evolutionary line that culminated with Muk. Though they have no further evolutions, they do have a regional variant. Alolan Grimer and Alolan Muk, introduced with Generation Seven, take on a dual Poison-Dark-tying. Grimer's basis is obvious, as it says it right there in the classification: sludge. It is thought to be based on pollution due to other Dex entries, which makes sense considering the environmental insights the Pokémon Company has given in other species, such as the sad story of Galarian Corsola which becomes a Ghost-type due to the death of the coral reef.

For fans of the anime, Grimer first appears in Pokémon Scent-sation! in a flashback as a Pokémon menacing young Gym Leader Erika. It then gets a starring role in Sparks Fly for Magnemitewhere Ash catches a Muk. Throughout the episode and even later installments, the series makes it a point to establish how much Grimer and Muk stink. Later, when Dawn trains a Grimer in Camping it Up!, it seems that the odor is no longer impacting humans around it.

Other Pokédex entries offer new information about Grimer:

  • Red/Blue: Appears in filthy areas. Thrives by sucking up polluted sludge that is pumped out of factories.
  • Yellow: Made of hardened sludge. It smells too putrid to touch. Even weeds won't grow in their path.
  • Gold: As it moves, it loses bits of its body from which new Grimer emerges. This worsens the stench around it.
  • Silver: Wherever Grimer has passed, so many germs are left behind that no plants will ever grow again.
  • Crystal: When two of these Pokémon's bodies are combined together, new poisons are created.
  • Sapphire: Grimer emerged from the sludge that settled on a polluted seabed. This Pokémon loves anything filthy. It constantly leaks a horribly germ-infested fluid from all over its body.
  • Black/White: It was born when sludge in a dirty stream was exposed to the moon's X-rays. It appears among the filth.

About Theo Dwyer

Theo Dwyer writes about comics, film, and games.