18 Pikachus dressed up for Halloween

Intern Pikachu

For Halloween, Pikachu's picked the scariest thing he can think of - a years-long unpaid internship. Look at his innocent little face and hipster glasses, so full of optimism about the future. He just knows the company will give him a permanent job if he works hard enough! It's the same facial expression a Final Girl wears at the beginning of a slasher flick.

But at least he looks good. Those retro glasses! That tie! The briefcase with the Pokmon logo! Sterling Cooper, Pikachu's reporting for duty.

Carnival Cheerleader Pikachu

It's official: Pikachu's a band geek. Pokmon Centers sold these 'Carnival Cheerleader Pikachu' plushes back in August, but Fall is Homecoming time, so we'll let it go. There was also a Bandleader Pikachu, but let's be honest - that's not as mind-bendingly fun as a Pikachu in a miniskirt and pom-poms.

But wait a second, what have we got here? Perky cuteness - check. Exuberant leaping - check. Rhythmic, repetitive shouting - double check. People, I think Pikachu might be the perfect cheerleader.

Pikachu, PhD

The hat and coat aren't really necessary - you can tell this Pikachu's got a doctorate from her disarrayed pockets, lack of fashion sense and agitated, thousand-yard stare. By her lab coat, I'd guess Pikachu, PhD is a doctor of electrical engineering, but the tassel suggests she's a professor of Poknomics.

There's so much to love about this plush, but the overflowing pockets make the outfit. Pokmon could've settled for giving her the little bows, hat, tassel, and glasses, but the stuffed pockets convey character. A+ for accessorizing, Pikachu, PhD.

Sailor Pikachu

This Pikachu's not only a sailor - he's the kind of musical theater sailor who spins around lampposts singing about how New York's a helluva town.

There's an undeniable old-world charm to Sailor Pikachu, a Victorian quaintness recalling the days when little kids wore tiny military uniforms as everyday wear. He's throw-up-in-your-mouth loveable, and you know that if he showed up on your doorstep you'd give him all the candy. Heck, you'd rob the neighbors and give him their candy too.

Festival Pikachu

This Pikachu's dressed up for a festival! The Pokmon Center offered these back in July, when many Japanese shrines hold their matsuri, a traditional festival where residents parade shrine gods through the neighborhood in palanquins called mikoshi. Teams carry these massive palanquins while wearing traditional dress like the happi coat and headband Pikachu has here. At times, teams compete to see who can complete a route the fastest, who can throw their mikoshi the highest, or who can bounce their god up and down the most vigorously. Apparently the gods like it. Fatalities aren't unknown.

A little out of season for Halloween? Sure. But it's good to see a mouse who knows his roots.

Pikachu Libre

PikaLibre, yo tel elijo!

I'm a Pikachu Libre fan. It's the paunchy, exposed midriff that does it. She's tough but vulnerable, with a sense of fun - the Joe Biden of Pikachus. And she's weird, super weird, but she wears that weird well.

As much as you might claim otherwise, you want PikaLibre at your Halloween party. She's the friend who shows up blasted, leads a Thriller dance, starts a whipped cream fight, drinks all your vodka, then moves on to another party. Sure, Pikachu PhD will stay afterward and help you clean up the mess, but PikaLibre always insures it's an interesting mess.

Pikachu Swaddled in the Soft Skin of Other Pokmon

I present the creepiest Pokmon Center promotion ever: Pikachu snuggling in sleeping bags that look like other Pokmon.

Look, I know there's something wrong with me. I know I'm not supposed to see this adorable scene and think that Pikachu's snoozing in the warm, tanned hide of another Pokmon - but I can't unsee it. And now you can't either. Welcome to my nightmare.

Popstar Pikachu

Meet what must be, by far, the most bizarre, disquieting Pokmon I've ever seen: Popstar Pikachu. I want you to understand, very clearly, that this is not a joke. This plush is an official Pokmon product you can buy with currency.

It's difficult to pin down why Popstar Pikachu is simultaneously so wonderful yet also flesh-crawlingly upsetting. Is it the frills? The eye sparkles? The skimpy skirt that screams Rule 34? Maybe it's the knowledge that even Pikachu can't escape the 'sexy costume' epidemic.

I'm so, so sorry I showed you this. Forgive me.

November Pikachu

It's only fitting that we cap this list off with November Pikachu, the herald of deep autumn. This Pikachu's bundled up to face Japan's chilly eleventh month, a season famous for changing leaves and mushroom gathering.

November Pikachu's a good palate cleanser to end this list. He's not a shadow demon or starry-eyed J-Pop girl. There's nothing morbid or bizarre. Just look at him. Can you resist that snuggly jacket with its fitted hood? That little basket? That mushroom with the adorable look on its oh God, does that mushroom have a face? It does. The mushroom has a face. A surprised, terrified face.

How could you, Pikachu? I thought your Gengar days were behind you.

Robert Rath