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Normal-type Reviews: Munchlax & Snorlax

Munchlax & Snorlax

We’re back for the Normal-type reviews, and today we’re going to focus on Munchlax and Snorlax, who are “skilled” at gluttony and sleeping respectively! If you are ready with this one, please proceed.



“I remember exactly where I was when Munchlax was revealed, in my 8th Grade Web Design Class. Munchlax instantly amused me…he was so cute, and it was the first Pokemon of the next Generation! I remember they promoted him a lot back then, with him ending up as a regular in the show, and it seemed like he was destined to become a major mascot. Since then, though, he’s sort of faded out from the mainstream, and his evolution Snorlax seems to be featured in bigger roles now. Oh, as for Snorlax, he was never really one of my favorites, it wasn’t till Munchlax where I sort of grew a fondness for him. I’ve actually never used a Snorlax, surprisingly, nor a Munchlax. Maybe if they remake RB again for the 20th Anniversary, I’ll take one for a spin.” ~ Garren


Munchlax & Snorlax
Selected Fan Art (Artist: スマゴン)


Snorlax was first introduced as an obstacle in a trainer’s quest, because it blocks crucial paths required to advance by sleeping in the way. It requires an external source to wake it up, so that you can battle and potentially capture it. It is a possibly rare species, since there are no random encounters with one. In Generation 4, Munchlax was introduced, which could be obtained through breeding Snorlax with a Full Incense, and it evolves through friendship with their trainer. As their names suggest, Snorlax represents slothfulness and Munchlax represents gluttony.

The closest animal that Munchlax and Snorlax resemble is the bear, based on their large bodies, limbs and ears. They’re not exactly bear-like, since their faces don’t match the traditional bear compared to Ursaring, Beartic or Pangoro. It’s not exactly known what Snorlax or Munchlax eats, but based on their tendency to eat anything, it matches up with the omnivorous diet of bears. One thing that this family don’t necessarily share with bears is the danger of being near one. Instead, they are more or less docile since their true passion is eating (and sleeping for Snorlax).

Eating is one thing both Pokémon really like to do. This matches up with their hidden ability Gluttony. Munchlax is said to have the capacity to eat its weight in food per day, which translates to 105kg, while Snorlax could take up to 400kg of food. If Munchlax could eat food worth its own weight, then it will be twice its weight when it has its share. With this sort of gluttony, it’s little wonder they are really fat. Their ravenousness can be quite bothersome for people, which is a problem in some stories where Munchlax or Snorlax is around.

One thing about Munchlax is that it swallows food whole, as in without chewing. This might be because in a bid to eat food worth its weight, then it needs to be quick in eating. It might store some leftovers in its fur for future use. Even then, it might forget that it kept its food away while it scurries for something to eat.

For Snorlax, it has a cast-iron stomach that it could basically eat anything without minding the effects. With a stomach that could dissolve any kind of poison, Snorlax has no problem eating even mouldy or rotten food. This allows Snorlax to eat anything off the ground, which it will definitely do because it needs to eat a lot. This must be why Snorlax has Immunity (something Munchlax lacks). If Snorlax is hungry, its belly will rumble, which sounds like its cry. The cry might mean the digital rendition in the video games and not the anime version, because it would be implausible for a rumble to sound like “Snorlax”.

Sleeping is what Snorlax normally spends the day doing. If it had its share of food, it will promptly go to sleep. The continuation of eating and sleeping makes Snorlax steadily fatter and lazier, making it a sort of vicious cycle. Because of its inertness, it is generally safe to do something about it because it doesn’t normally shoo away anything, so it’s a gentle giant in a sense. This makes Snorlax’s bouncy belly a perfect place for children to play on, since Snorlax isn’t really reactive. In spirit of this, there are even merchandise of a Snorlax bed that kids could rest on.

Snorlax’s size makes it an obstacle in progress for any trainer who wants to go through their quest. Its large size blocks narrow paths that will surely garner complaints by many people because it prevents them from running errands that necessitate using that path. It seems to be impossible to capture Snorlax while it is blissfully sleeping, which defies the logic that inactive Pokémon are easy to capture. The only way to get it out of the way is to wake it up and battle it, which could be a long battle because it has Rest to recover all the damage you inflict, and a low catch rate to have Poké Balls missing rather often. Snorlax’s blocking is also a source of inspiration in plots in the anime or manga involving Snorlax.

Snorlax’s large girth could be used as an advantage in battle, because of its high HP and great Attack and Special Defence. Having high stats in those fields make Snorlax an ideal Curse user. Its low Speed makes Curse’s side-effect less of an issue, but the Defence increase is very helpful. Its Thick Fat or Immunity will help it set up. Because of the high defences, Snorlax could afford to use Rest to stay healthy while setting up. Snorlax’s stats allow it to use Assault Vest effectively against Special attackers. As for Munchlax, while Eviolite gives it a lot of defence, its lack of recovery (besides Rest) is a huge disadvantage when paired with its very low Speed, and it is not exactly the strongest Pokémon, so when it is prevented from using Status moves through Taunt, it will be largely helpless (since it cannot recover at all).

While Munchlax was introduced as a big Pokémon in Generation 4, its popularity didn’t go beyond the period of that Generation, whereas Snorlax has always been a popular Pokémon since day one, which could be attributed to either Snorlax’s enduring charm or that Generation 1 Pokémon tend to be fondly remembered more than the other Generations.

It’s amusing to know that it’s possible to turn gluttony and slothfulness into a type of combat skill and equally amusing that both could be combined for it, not so much for using said vices for battle, but the result of those vices. Beyond that, these rotund and fat Pokémon are quite admirable in looks and feel.


+ Have a large appetite
+ Quite docile
+ Size and fatness are useful in battling
± Quite lazy and gluttonous
– Looks a bit off from resembling bears


Munchlax’s TCG Card

Munchlax (Rising Rivals 70)

To an unsuspecting household, a Munchlax is going to be troublesome to deal with, for it will search the house for food if it managed to break in, usually in the kitchen or the place where food is stashed, akin to a wild animal searching for food. This unfortunate household is yet to see what has happened, but I imagine they might be in for a surprise. If that Munchlax do belong to them, then you can disregard this.


Snorlax’s TCG Card

Snorlax (Wizards Promo 49)

Hardly a work of art, isn’t it? With an artwork like this, it’s obviously drawn by a young artist who won an illustration contest, so that explains the rough layout. In a way, this picture represents Snorlax’s tendency to get children to like it. Not only do children play on Snorlax safely, it is big and round and cute, which is quite liked by children. If you are yet to know what this picture is about, it’s Snorlax blocking a junction, preventing travellers from going past it, just as it happened in the games.


Snore & Sleep Talk

You may be wondering what both Snore and Sleep Talk have in common that makes them both representatives to Snorlax. Obviously, it is a move that reflects its tendency to sleep, in which it will be able to do something even when it is vulnerable due to its naptime. In other words, Snore and Sleep Talk are the only moves that can only be used while a Pokémon is asleep.

Snore provides a reliable attack while sleeping, but its power is on the low side. On the plus side, it can make the opponent flinch, so it is occasionally useful. Sleep Talk, on the other hand, allows the user to use another of their moves while sleeping, and one of the moves could potentially be a powerful attack. Of the two, Sleep Talk sees more use precisely because it can summon a useful move on occasion, which is much better than being vulnerable while sleeping.

Because of this, Sleep Talk occasionally finds use in a moveset with Rest, usually with a set-up move and one attack to make the user survive as long as possible while being able to fight back. On other occasions, the user might just be a “sleep-absorber”, where they purposely have a Pokémon that is meant to be put to sleep so that they could use Sleep Talk to always summon an attack.

Overall, Sleep Talk is somewhat random in its reliability, but it is better than not doing anything. Snore, on the other hand, is a bit weak and predictable to be constantly useful.


That’s all for today’s article. I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I have writing it.

Thanks for reading.


Next Article: Spearow & Fearow

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