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Pokemon: Why Diglett and Dugtrio’s Bodies Inspire Nightmarish Fan Art

The internet is home to many nightmare-inducing stories, but among the most frightening of all are the theories surrounding Pokémon‘s Diglett and Dugtrio. From creepypasta to gruesome fan art, imaginations run wild when it comes to the true nature of these Pokémon and what they hide beneath the soil.

Like an iceberg, Diglett and its evolved form, Dugtrio, hide more below the surface than is visible from up top. These ground-type Pokémon, officially #050 and #051 in the Pokédex, are unassuming on the surface with their cylindrical heads, pink button noses and dark, beady eyes. But, for whatever reason, these creatures’ full bodies have never been fully shown in the Pokémon anime or games. Diglett and Dugtrio’s are always bodies buried beneath the dirt, hidden away from prying eyes and, for years, Pokémon fans have wondered: “what does the rest of them look like?”

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This question has led artists around the web to theorize at the tip of a pen – to the detriment of everyone’s mental well being. In 2010, DeviantArt user TDSpiral envisioned Diglett as being the tip of a root-like system that burrows into the earth deeper than even eldritch horrors dare to dig. A decade later, Twitter artist Louie Zong, perhaps tapping in to a shared cognitive pool of fears traveling wisp-like through the ether, painted a portrait of Diglett as a much larger being simply peering into our realm via its prodding digits.

But, not all fan art of Diglett’s supposed body is horrific. Rather, some stray into sensual, not safe for work territory, evidence of the minds straying from the safety of the Pokémon Road. Others picture Diglett as a muscle-bound behemoth ready to burst from the dirt like a volcanic eruption. Meanwhile, more still picture it — specifically Dugtrio — as a thoughtful titan in the style of sculptor Auguste Rodin’s “The Thinker” as did DeviantArt user Blkmkt.

Diglett, in its base form, looks like a singular being, but evolved it becomes Dugtrio and sprouts three heads from the same body. Why so many? Does this Pokémon need more than one, or are they something other than heads, like say, tentacles? Even the Pokémon designers themselves are baffled by Diglett. In a 2013 Official Nintendo Magazine interview with Game Freak developer Junichi Masuda and graphic designer Hironobu Yoshida, both of whom have worked on the Pokémon series for decades, Masuda admits to being curious about what Diglett looks like below ground. Yoshida theorizes that “maybe it’s like a hand or something?” What secrets could Diglett be hiding that elude even those who helped create it?

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The closest thing to concrete information on Diglett’s body comes in Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Red Rescue Team and Blue Rescue Team. Diglett claims to have feet to the surprise of everyone, but there is no actual visual confirmation. Even in Sun and Moon, the perfect opportunity to explore Diglett and Dugtrio further with their Alolan Forms, the only changes to the duo are the golden locks sprouting from their heads – continuing the legacy of Diglett and Dugtrio’s no-show feet.

Perhaps the primal fear surrounding Diglett’s unknowable bottom half comes from the fact that it looks totally harmless, cute even. Maybe taking Diglett’s word that it does, in fact, have feet is the best option given that the alternative is an eerie, unspeakable truth, one that encourages the very worst of thoughts to reveal themselves like so many Digletts hidden far below the surface.

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What're they hiding under there? Delve into the horrifying world of Diglett's body with internet theories and spooky fan art.

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