Scyther’s been my favourite Pokémon for a long time. I used to be able to draw it from memory when I was like 13, but now I have to learn & practise all over again.
And now I’m going to tell you why it’s my favourite:
1) it has knives for hands
2) it’s green
3) it’s a perfect example of what’s great about Pokémon and why I like them
Because here’s the thing. Imagine playing Pokémon for the first time way back in gen I. Bug-types like Weedle or Caterpie are among the first wild Pokémon you ever encounter. They’re abundant, easy to catch and grow quickly, so you’re very likely to have one on your team and it’s probably going to be the first one you evolve (unless you overlevel your starter a lot). The game is teaching the concept of “evolution” to you this way, because it’s a safe bet that nearly everyone has learned early on about how insect larvae pupate (become cocoons) and metamorphose (drastically change into moths/butterflies). So to understand Pokémon evolving, just imagine the bug life cycle, but it happens suddenly and to everything. Which is cool! And the Weedle/Caterpie lines are cool too. They’re pretty recognisable as the first kind of thing you think of when you think “bugs”.
Enter Scyther, also a Bug-type. But much harder to find and catch since it only appears later in the Safari Zone, and much more exotic in appearance too. It’s described as a “mantis”, although it appears to be based more on a mantidfly (not the same thing). Either way, not unheard-of, but not the first thing most people would think of when they think “bugs”. And its design takes the insect as inspiration and runs with it. What’s the most iconic feature of a mantis? The claw-like forelegs. Let’s translate that into KNIVES FOR HANDS. We’re not just drawing a cartoon insect here, we’re designing a 5-foot-tall magical monster built for fighting. Now it’s dual-wielding swords, so let’s make its exoskeleton look like protective armour. And so on until you end up with this dinosaur-headed winged ninja-knight badass which is still recognisable as a bug (three distinct body segments!) Because a bug monster doesn’t just have to be a creepy-crawly that poisons you.
tl;dr Pokémon can be familiar or fantastical and there’s something very satisfying about strong monster design, like Scyther. Also it has knives for hands.