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Alone and Angry: The Early Years
Nidorina's Secret, the first episode Nidorina appears in, is told in both present time, and with a series of flashbacks in the form of reoccuring dreams. In it, it tells readers everything they need to know about why Nidorina is a forest bully who seemingly lacks compassion. As a very young child, Nidoran always lived a domesticated life, in a nice home with furnishings. This was the life she knew. However, she was sort of a loner, and not by choice. Her equally young classmates made fun of her for being quiet and having a mild-stuttering problem, as well as for being chubbier than most Nidoran, and having an appetite to match the stereotype. Needless to say she didn't make many friends. She invited all of her classmates to attend her birthday party, but no one came. This event, however, put the focus on her very loving parents, who always kept her spirits up. At the end of the day, the lack of party attendants didn't matter, because she had a mother and father who would do anything for her, and showed her all the love in the world. In fact, it was her parents who taught her that the secret to happiness is to love everyone, even if people don't love you back, or you think someone doesn't deserve it, as it'll always come back around tenfold.
Then at some unspecified time, Poke Island was under threat of Pokemon poachers, who wanted these rare, secretive and seemingly more intelligent creatures for whatever reason. Nidoran's mother, a Nidoqueen, was captured, and her father, a Nidoking, did all he could to try to get his wife back. The poachers shot Nidoking with a shotgun off a steep bluff, and made off with Nidoran's mother. The only source of love Nidoran had was ripped away from her at an early age, and she would fall into depression, crying all the time at the very vivid memories of her father shot in the chest and the truck driving away with her caged mother. Having no one else and not being able to pay for the home she lived in, she was forced into homelessness (which is less bad for a Pokemon than a human, but it's certainly different if all you once knew was domestication).
Years passed, and the school children became increasingly unsympathetic. Nidoran, forced to live in the wild, evolved into Nidorina early. She lost her stutter and grew into her body a little better, but she was still traumatized, and spent a lot of her time crying. Kids would label her a crybaby, others would tell her to move on, and even those who were once sympathetic lost their patience. It all came to a head when she could finally take no more of the ridicule and fought with one of the school bullies. When the school administrators came out, she was the one considered a troublemaker and was given a suspension, while the bully got off. At this point realizing how unfair the real world seemed to be, she ran away and never returned to school. However, something much worse happened. She became numb, untrusting, and full of resentment, realizing that at this point she's only looking out for herself, and the only way to get what you want in life is to take it.
All that is known after that is that she bullied Pokemon into giving her what she wanted, and was generally unsympathetic up until the current time of Nidorina's Secret. And even in the current time, she would never forget what happened to her parents, filling her heart with a reoccuring sadness.
From Second Chances to a Life of Love
The Poke Forest Pokemon became increasingly frustrated with Nidorina tormenting them until they finally had enough collective guts to say enough is enough. They went to Butterfree to get him to handle the situation. Butterfree tried talking to Nidorina, but she wasn't having it and started to lash out at him. Having no choice but to fight, he more than put Nidorina in her place, and in front of what felt like everyone. She lost all face, and the will to continue living on such a planet indifferent to her hardships. Butterfree, being the great diplomat and makeshift therapist that he is, showed her sympathy and listened to her story. Butterfree reminded her of the very same thing her parents taught her at an early age, which was to love everyone, even if it felt undeserved, and he promised that he himself, along with all the other forest Pokemon, would help her start a new life where she can be happy, and finally let go of the past. The other forest Pokemon, being forgiving sorts, were all on board, and as if in an instant, a great sense of relief and warmth entered Nidorina, and she would agree to do her best to recondition herself, realizing that she didn't have to "run away anymore".
Realistically, the road to recovery was slow and natural. Though played more for gags than as pure antagonism, Nidorina would still be prone to bullying and yelling, and was still very much self conscious and uncertain if anyone really liked her. That all said, no one would get Nidorina's spirits up faster than Nidorino, the local tenderhearted forester who's personality was a nice as his looks. They hit it off pretty quickly, both being equally attracted to each other, and began dating shortly. Nidorino's genuine kindness and loving affection towards Nidorina, a woman who's gone so long without, cemented him in her mind as the one and only, her knight in shining armor, and she would never, ever, ever become attracted to anyone else. Nidorino was her world, now. She, still having bullying tendencies, threatened Nidorino to marry her almost as soon as they started dating, and Nidorino agreed out of shock, not knowing what else to say or do. It was essentially a shotgun wedding with Nidorina being the shotgun, and while it may have been the happiest day of Nidorina's life, this would eat away at Nidorino, still in shock at how fast it was all happening, not ready for marriage himself.
Nidorina wanted to have it all in her fairytale marriage. She set her sights on a family next, which Nidorino wasn't too keen on giving her, leading Nidorina to become anxious and self conscious, wondering if Nidorino still loved her or not. Once Eevee showed up, all the latent maternal instincts instantly kicked in, and Nidorina adopted him as her own, feeling sorry for the small child. Nidorino was not happy with this at all, and having to now provide for a wife he wasn't ready for and a child he didn't ask for, forced him to start looking for work.
And then a lot of stuff happened, tens of episodes passed with Nidorina growing increasingly more loving, motherly, eccentric and silly, and far less bullying, and Nidorino began warming up to everything, with plenty of events bringing them together., including a public apology from Nidorino for being distant, and a remarriage to start over on the right foot. At this point, Nidorino finally agreed to giving Nidorina her own biological child. Once Needles was born, it brought them together even closer, especially considering that Eevee would return to Eevee Island after the threat of Scarlet the Flareon had been dealt with and put to rest.
The series having now moved into Poke Legends, Nidorina adopts Totodile, a small child who had also lost his parents to poachers (which while triggering the memory of Nidorina's lost parents, showed how much she grew as a character as she was able to face that memory with strength, and put it out of her mind quickly). She also becomes much sweeter on Nidorino, more confident in knowing that he truly loves her. They have another child, Diana, and this makes Nidorina even happier, and far more loving. Though Nidorino was happy with his growing family and closer relationship to Nidorina, he still felt a lot of pressure in having to become a provider for this family, and felt he had to prove himself worthy of his own family's respect, which created a bit of distance between Nidorino and Nidorina by making himself too busy and unavailable, opting to work harder to bring his family the best. At first this didn't bother Nidorina, but the more she grew into the marriage, the far more amorous she became, too (not to mention the more she became aware of her own attractiveness, slowly edging out her previous self consciousness). To put it tactfully, you could say Nidorino made an effort to meet Nidorina's needs, but not nearly as much or *ahem*... as often... as she would have liked, so Nidorina would become increasingly flirty and suggestive to try to get Nidorino to pay her some attention, among other things.
No doubt attracted to his wife in ways he just couldn't (and honestly didn't want to) fight, Nidorino almost always gave into his wife's advances, and it lead to their final child, Nina, who neither of them planned on having. Giving birth to Nina prematurely was one of the final marital struggles Nidorina and Nidorino had, knowing they had to face the possibility of losing their child together. After all was said and done, Nina survived, and Nidorina and Nidorino have become as close to each other as they could possibly be. Nidorina herself had become a very strong, tender loving woman through the years, having played a role of mother to the motherless and the traveling youth in the Poke Forest, defending the defenseless, showing herself friendly and full of life to lift up the spirits of many, showing the love that she felt others deserved to everyone, and holding fast to her own family and marriage, making sure she kept up her own home before prying into the "homes" of others.
Personality, Quirks, and Other Tidbits
The modern depiction of Nidorina is based on the way she was portrayed both in the latter portion of Poke Legends and at the end of it, as opposed to how she was seen at the beginning of Poke Tales before all of her personal growth and development. This makes her a much more fun character all around, and her loving personality combined with an almost naive, childlike silliness towards her newfound enjoyment of life gives her plenty of endearment. Going forward, this is Nidorina as we know her, so here's a bunch of fun stuff about the sweetheart of the Poke Forest!
- Nidorina's personality can be best described as having the qualities of both a mother and child at the same time. She's very maternal, caring, open and tender. Having had impactful experiences and learning the lessons in her own life, she will use her wisdom to try to help and comfort others. However, she loves to play with children on their own level (much like her successor, Nidorina Schneider would do herself), and lives a life full of imagination and whimsy.
- Nidorina's entire purpose for existing was to make one of the species a sympathetic, and then later endearing character in order to reflect well upon the species as a whole.
- Additionally, she was meant to invert specific spousal stereotypes, with the wife being the goofier character, and the one to make all initiating romantic passes towards a male spouse as opposed to the opposite that seemed typical of sitcoms in the 90s-2000s. Fortunately, archetypes and assumed gender roles seemed to have loosened over time in the real world, making Nidorina less of an oddball.
- Nidorina genuinely enjoys homemaking. She loves to cook, she finds fun in cleaning, and taking care of the children is one of her favorite things to do, as she loves to spend as much time with them as she can.
- She also loves to eat! Her favorite foods are ham, lobsters and peaches. She also snacks a lot.
- Nidorina has a very high metabolism that counters her appetite. She can eat sandwiches stacked to Scooby-Doo levels of ridiculousness, and just like Shaggy from that series, never gains an additional pound.
- As a guilty pleasure, sometimes Nidorina uses whipped cream as a condiment. She also cooks with a lot of butter.
- In series canon, Nidorina is very cute and also rather beautiful. She's only aware of her attractiveness in terms of how it affects Nidorino, but is pretty blind to it otherwise. She's absolutely oblivious to being hit on by others, and when it finally does hit her, is quick to mention that she's happily married.
- Nidorina can't act very well, nor can she sing, but it didn't stop her from having a one time stint in an action movie! She was casted for her rarity as an amazingly cute Nidorina, and it was thought that this would be a box office draw. Her performance was about what you'd expect from a cartoon mom in a movie, and the most notable thing is that her devotion to Nidorino and Nidorino only forced the writers to work around any potential on screen romances. The hero only gets a hug and a handshake at the end, and it's unknown if he truly got the girl, or if he just made a platonic friend.
- Despite Nidorina's silly, perhaps over the top performance, a lot of people really found it endearing, and loved her role in the movie for its honest sincerity. Additionally, it's a secret shame for many because of how cute her raw performance comes off as. Nidorina takes the compliments highly, but otherwise doesn't think about her one-time movie gig. It was just a fun thing she did once.
- Additionally, just because Nidorina couldn't carry a tune in a bucket doesn't mean she won't try. If she's got a song in her heart, she'll let it out anyway, even if it's just to herself.
- Furthermore, due to the possibilities of Nidorina as a better performer and singer being too fun not to explore, a slight alternate reality version of Nidorina exists in non-canon works, where she plays the role of a humble, low key jazz singer. This non-canon Nidorina shows up in fan art, and has an animation debut in "I've Got My Love to Keep Me Warm", along with a much larger project that was actually conceptualized years prior. It is still being considered for production, but the quality of animation preferred for the musical short will make it very challenging, and definitely one of the most time consuming of any Aqua Bunny Animation.
- Nidorina is eclectic, having additional time to learn many things in her downtime as a stay-at-home mom than if she was working. She's surprisingly tech savvy and can competently play most video games. She can also sew and make clothing and costumes, which gives her the opportunity to try out a lot of cosplay. And if that wasn't enough, Nidorina is also into anime (and probably non Japanese cartoons too if we're going there).
- Nidorina uses her tech savviness to send Nidorino videos and photos of herself while he's at work. Most of these are innocuous, showing off precious baby moments, or something funny she saw, or just saying "hi" and "I love you". However, she's not entirely innocent, either, and sometimes sends Nidorino suggestive and racy things of herself, from winking while eating a banana to much less child friendly and therefore unseen things, sometimes just to mess with him, knowing full well he's at the office. In her mind, it provides a midday sense of thrill and risk for him, and keeps him on edge. He never quite knows what to expect from his wife. To open this message or not to open this message...
- Nidorina considers Nidorino her best friend, and they talk to each other about anything and everything. Usually during walks or non specific outings, they carry on long conversations, laughing and joking and gasping and playfully shoving. They also openly talk about things that bother them, which Nidorina has been especially good at, except for a period of time after Diana's birth. She became so content and fulfilled with how good her life was going thus far, she willfully overlooked any off-behavior from Nidorino. At least for a little while, anyway.
- Nidorina's love for Nidorino is so deep and so strong, you could power a large city with it. She always gets butterflies in her stomach just from knowing he's around. No one in the world makes her happier, and she's absolutely blind to all other men.
- Nidorina's attraction to Nidorino and penchant for making herself irresistible to Nidorino is just as powerful as her genuine affection for him, and though what this inevitably leads to is not bluntly stated, it's implied in the series that everyone except the youngest of children are very much aware of what's goes on between them, often to the jealousy of other married couples.
- The above being stated, after Nina, neither Nidorina nor Nidorino plan on having any more children for a few years at least, and have taken measures to prevent more "oops babies" from occurring. They certainly aren't going to give up... the other thing.