Pokemon: Lugia's Creator Intended the Legendary to Be Male and Female

Pokemon has plenty of monsters out there to catch, and Ash Ketchum has done his best to meet them all. Back in the day, fans were plenty excited when the Kanto boy met Lugia during an outing involving the Legendary Birds. The little-known Legendary had a calming effect on Ash as well as audiences, and the writer who created Lugia wants to set something straight about the Pokemon.

As it turns out, Lugia is not meant to be male or female. When it comes down to its, writer Takeshi Shudo created Lugia to be both genders and act as a bridge between two diametric labels.

For those who did not know this about Lugia, the info came from Shudo's personal blog which he ran before his death. Dr. Lava, a Pokemon historian, ordered a new translation of the entries for their own records. And it was there fans learned more about Lugia's intertwined nature.

Pokemon Anime Lugia
(Photo: OLM)

"Of course there was Lugia, whose voice is masculine — though in my mind, Lugia has both male and a female sides which intertwine," Shudo explained.

When you look at Lugia, it is not possible to tell what gender the Pokemon is. They do have a masculine voice in the second Pokemon movie, but their role as a creator made them maternal in Shudo's eye. According to the writer, Lugia taps into maternal instincts since it is the "creator of all life on Earth" so Shudo was very upset when the film ended up portraying the Legendary as strictly masculine.

“Advertisements had already been aired. It was too late, we couldn’t suddenly change Lugia into a female… I was gulping down alcohol and drugs. I started to feel like I wanted to die," Shudo admitted.


Over the years, Lugia has faded away from Pokemon lore as the monster isn't often mentioned. The death of Shudo had a devastating impact on Lugia, but the Legendary has upped its visibility lately with an appearance in Pokemon Journeys. Hopefully, the franchise will find a way to use Lugia more often in the future and do so in a way that is faithful to Shudo's intentions.

Where does Lugia rank amongst your favorite Legendary Pokemon? Let me know in the comments or hit me up on Twitter @MeganPetersCB to talk all things comics and anime!

Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.