Lenora’s Character Design Changed for Airings Outside Japan

Lenora, the second Gym Leader in Black and White – and the first major Black character in the Pokemon franchise – was shown with her updated design in the dub episodes that aired in America these past two Saturdays (A Night in the Nacrene City Museum! and The Battle According to Lenora). In the original episodes, she was wearing an apron, whereas in the updated versions that have likely been given to all countries outside Japan, the Japanese animators completely redrew her to remove the apron altogether. Comparison screenshots are below, which you can click for larger images.

Lenora's Original Design Lenora's Updated Design Lenora's Original Design Lenora's Updated Design

Lenora’s original Ken Sugimori artwork depicted her wearing an apron, but shortly after the Japanese release of Black and White, her design was changed to have the apron slung over her shoulder instead. The change was probably made because her original design could be misconstrued as an allusion to Black slavery, and as to not relive the Jynx controversy, the Japanese decided to change her design before anyone publicly complained.

Lenora's Original Design Lenora's Updated Design