yeah i realize why dodrio is a great lead (i still think in fact that it's better than starmie as a lead but of course starmie warrants a slot on your team moreso than dodrio always) hence why it is so high on my list. i suppose persian is actually just really bad as a lead. i was just trying to entertain the idea because at first it seemed like it could be at least "OK." but thinking about it, it probably belongs with the "w/e" stuff on my list. still curious about how charizard compares to other fires as well (clearly it's worse than ninetales because it's got ice, water and elec weakness and low ass special so it doesn't hurt anything nearly as much as ninetales and also takes WAY worse damage from everything. but it is faster than jynx so at least it can maybe scare it off, making it better than moltres and arcanine at least maybe? i guess. then there's also rapidash to think about...) none of this stuff is of prime importance though really. also, zam vs starmie as anti leads is interesting. zam does better against gengar (marginally) and can smack every other lead with psychic or seismic toss and paralyze everything. starmie on the other hand, is worse at absorbing sleep, does better against exeggutor because of blizzard, and does worse against jynx because it has no seismic toss. i'd say overall zam is a bit better as an anti-lead just because of the versatility of seismic toss and how much better it is at taking sleep. for example, while they're about equal when it comes to scaring lead gar off, zam can come into gar while it's asleep and wake up on it while starmie can't. this is a quality that's really good in a sleep absorber because you limit the risk of sacking anything unnecessary, or losing two pokemon because of one sleeper. that's what mr.e is talking about kinda. you HAVE to sack something to sleep no matter what in rby (unless you're really lucky), so if you have to go down 5-6 for a really short period of time, you might as well make it the pokemon that's most likely to outlive the opponent's sleepers, which zam is the best at. zam also can switch into any sleeper and force them out while it's asleep anyway, because if you smack it around in its sleep there's a good chance it'll wake up and just recover and you'll only have wasted pp. so generally people just switch out to tauros or snorlax or something which gives zam opportunities to wake up (although giving them too many opportunities to switch in is never good either, but essentially anything you have sleeping gives them opportunities to come in). i agree that whether or not you paralyze egg should be completely dependent on your sleepers/your team, but i still maintain that most of the time people will t wave and not even think about it, for the same reason every scrub will lead zam without thinking about it: they're chumps. i personally would paralyze egg a lot of the time, and then stay in with zam in case they try to double powder, and eventually they'll switch, and my sleepers would then be egg and sing lapras, so i'd try to catch something with lapras, and double switch to lapras whenever i thought exeggutor was coming in because it puts the opponent in tough spots. but that's not really that important. i'm not sure if you're still suggesting that egg is a bad lead when zam is by far the most popular lead, but regardless, if you have a zam on your team you're pretty much guaranteed the even sleep trade whether you lead with it or not because your zam can still switch into and take on any sleeper. we're arguing whether or not something is worthy of being a lead, not whether or not it must be on your team. if you don't have zam at all, then you DEFINITELY lose the sleep trade as you describe it, so i don't think it's correct to think of the quality of a lead in those terms. also, if zam is popular, and you lead exeggutor, you put your opponent to sleep first and have an opportunity to threaten with snorlax or rhydon or tauros or something right away. leading zam gives you no potential for momentum against exeggutor because you have to worry about double powder (of course you can judge this on a player to player basis, but usually the best thing to do against exeggutor is stay in, because if you get double powdered, then fuck the sleep trade, you're DEFINITELY behind). if you lead zam and end up in zam mirrors though, there's no way to judge with certainty what two pokemon will be facing off next turn because throwing out twave turn one in a zam mirror is fucking stupid and you have no idea what the opponent is going to switch to. zam is better against jynx of course, and gengar to a lesser degree, and enemy exeggutor to a still lesser degree, but if zam is popular, it's stupid to say that exeggutor is a bad lead because ending up with your exeggutor vs zam can pay off for you with much more certainty than a zam mirror. also, gengar can wake up against some status spreaders, for example chansey and psychicless starmie (which is most starmies) almost as well as zam can. it just doesn't wake up against exeggutor, enemy zam and enemy gengar as easily. but it can still take advantage of its normal immunity to some degree regardless of whether it's asleep, and usually after gengar sleeps something, it's done enough that it doesn't matter if you let it take sleep. gengar rarely does more than sleep something, act as a pivot and explode anyway. it's certainly not as good as zam, but it's probably the second best thing in the game to let take sleep. i'm not sure i agree that the rocks are good sleep absorbers though because every sleeper/almost every status spreader smashes them to pieces while they're asleep.