First Pokémon Master Retires, Anime Features New Protagonist Duo
Ash Ketchum and Pikachu, the faces of the “Pokémon” series for more than two decades, will step down as the main characters of the anime next year.
In a new trailer, The Pokémon Company confirmed that “the final chapter in the story of Ash and Pikachu” will air in an 11-episode series beginning Friday, January 13, 2023, in Japan. In that trailer, the company announced the development of the “future of Pokémon.” Given that the two have been at the forefront of the industry for 25 years, the trailer depicts the high points of the 1997 anime.
An all-new Pokémon series has been announced!— Pokémon (@Pokemon) December 16, 2022
Join 2 new characters and 3 Paldea starter Pokémon as they adventure through the Pokémon world! Plus, commemorate Ash’s journey with special episodes concluding Pokémon Ultimate Journeys: The Series.
Coming soon in 2023 and beyond! pic.twitter.com/2lrM6W1dgW
The miniseries concludes the recent Ash version, in which Ash became the first Pokémon Champion. The heartbreaking finale featured Ash and Pikachu defeating the sword-and-shield champion Leon and his Chariders. Gary Oak, who has been tormenting players since the first generation, reappears and asks Ash a tough question: now that he is a champion, how close did he come to becoming a Pokémon Master?
The new series is introduced with the message, “In a wide world, new dreams and adventures begin.” Along with the Pokémon Scarlet and Violet starters, the series seems to feature two main characters, a boy and a girl, to keep pace with the new game.
Misty, Brock, and many other characters have reappeared in hundreds of Pokémon anime episodes. But this is certainly the end of an era, and it will be interesting to see how the series changes with two of its brightest stars leading the charge.