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Not everyone hates Splatoon 2’s punching bag, Pearl

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A fanbase is divided over this new idol

pearl and marina splatoon 2 Nintendo

Splatoon 2’s most exciting characters are Marina and Pearl, the new Splatfest hosts and stars of the band Off the Hook. While Marina is categorically beloved, Pearl has proven polarizing — really, really polarizing. She may be the internet’s new favorite meme, but not everyone is dumping on the poor girl.

In the wake of her reveal, Pearl’s become an easy target. She’s got a forehead that’s way too big, some say; she looks like a goblin, a gremlin, a ghoul.

It’s as if fans have to bring Pearl down so that they can keep pumping Marina up. Splatoon has always been a series about choosing sides, and picking between the idols has become the game’s first battle. Even Pearl and Marina are inclined to dig into each other; such is the way of the Splatfest.

And Pearl maybe hasn’t made the best first impression, as this screenshot from Polygon’s Nick Robinson proves:

We haven’t dug too far into Splatoon 2’s single-player campaign yet, but we’re eager to see where this goes.

Regardless, as the game’s release draws closer, fans are already turning a corner on Pearl. There’s something endearing and relatable about her — she reminds us of those shallow people who may have dumped on us in our youth. That could be why she’s gotten some more love on art sites, including Japan’s Pixiv. There may be more illustrations of Pearl than her better liked co-star on there:

shizukiamakawa/Pixiv
Pixiv
pearl fan art bonehone_ryu/Pixiv

The fanart is helping Reddit and Twitter, the biggest cesspools of Pearl hate, come around to her too.

pearl fanart CapnMeowMeow/Reddit
A strong contingent of Redditors think Pearl as the “best girl” in Splatoon 2.
Reddit

There’s even a pretty rad remix of Kendrick Lamar’s “Humble” featuring Pearl, further helping her reputation.

There may be some hope for our girl yet ... even if the anti-Pearl memes are pretty great.