No Guest Found in this category
For just over two decades, eternal ten-year old Ash Ketchum has been travelling the various regions of the Pokémon world in his quest to become the world’s greatest Pokémon Master.
For the first eight of the long-running Pokémon anime’s twenty-four seasons, spanning three regions, eight movies, and a near countless number of Pokémon battles and captures, Veronica Taylor provided the voice of Ash in the series’ English dub.
Many long-term fans view these seasons as the golden age of the anime and to celebrate Taylor’s appearance at Supanova in Sydney (June 18 & 19) and Perth (June 25 & 26), we take a look back at Ash Ketchum’s best moments from the first eight seasons of Pokémon, and the associated movies.
Ash protects Pikachu
Fans who have been with the Pokémon anime right from the start will remember that the now unbreakable bond between Ash and his beloved Pikachu did not come as easily as it might seem. When Ash first receives Pikachu, the electric mouse is stubborn and disobedient, forcing Ash to literally drag it along for the earliest part of their adventure. However, when the pair are attacked by a flock of angry Spearow, Ash throws himself between the Spearow and an injured Pikachu without a second thought. His determination to protect Pikachu despite their troubled relationship before that forged a bond between Pokémon and Trainer that endures to this day.
Ash and Pikachu defeat Lt. Surge
After realising that he earned his first two Kanto League Gym Badges by default, Ash is determined to win his third in a fair battle. This quest becomes complicated when he learns that the Vermillion Gym Leader, Lt. Surge, possesses a fully evolved Raichu, who easily defeats Pikachu in their first match. Rather than force Pikachu to evolve as Surge suggests, Ash forms a new strategy, overcoming Raichu’s power with speed-based attacks. They defeat Raichu in a rematch, in one of the anime’s first examples of a good strategy beating out raw power, bringing home the message that we’re enough exactly as we are.
Ash is defeated by Richie in the Pokémon League
After winning his first few battles of the Pokémon League Tournament, Ash is confident heading into his match against new friend Richie. However, things quickly fall apart when Ash’s Charizard stops obeying him mid battle, and falls asleep in the middle of the arena. Despite Ash’s desperate pleas, Charizard will not budge, forcing Ash to forfeit and be eliminated from the Tournament.
Ash leads the original Pokémon into battle against Mewtwo’s clones
Around the midpoint of the very first Pokémon movie, Ash is separated from the rest of the gathered Trainers when he desperately pursues Pikachu and the other Pokémon captured by Mewtwo, and in the process, witnesses the birth of Mewtwo’s clone Pokémon. Ash manages to rescue not just his own Pokémon, but all of them, and in one of the most iconic shots in the entire series, leads them back to the arena to confront the clones.
Ash finally wins Charizard’s trust
Ash’s struggles to train his stubborn Charizard come to a head when the Pokémon is seriously injured by an ice attack due to its failure to listen to Ash in battle during the Orange Islands story arc. Far from any Pokémon Centre, Ash stays up with Charizard all night, keeping it warm and nursing it back to health. Ash’s devotion finally wins him Charizard’s trust, and he has been one of his most loyal Pokémon ever since, rivalling only Pikachu.
Pretty much all of Pokémon The Movie 2000
While the first movie is loved for the inclusion of Mewtwo and high nostalgia value, the second is way more cinematic in story and scale. Ash discovers a prophecy that he is the chosen one, destined to collect three mystical orbs that will summon the legendary Pokémon, Lugia. Ash’s efforts are complicated by a collector eager to capture Lugia, but with the help of his friends, Pokémon, and even Team Rocket, Ash is successful in the end.
Ash is defeated by Gary
Despite Ash viewing Gary Oak as his rival throughout the early part of the anime, they do not actually battle until Ash returns from his adventure in the Orange Islands. After bragging about having ranked higher than Gary in the Indigo League, Ash is shocked when Pikachu is defeated by Ash’s Eevee. He is reminded that he still has a lot to learn.
Ash battles Entei on Charizard’s back
Early in his travels through Johto, Ash leaves Charizard behind to train in the Charicific Valley, but thankfully, it arrives just in time to save Ash and Pikachu from falling to their death in Pokémon 3: Spell of the Unown. Ash then directs the ensuing battle between Charizard and Molly Hale’s dream-world Entei from his spot on Charizard’s back. Stupid and dangerous? Yes. Awesome? Definitely.
Ash defeats Gary in the Silver Conference
Ash gets his long-awaited rematch with Gary during the Johto League Silver Conference. After a long battle, it comes down to just two Pokémon: Ash’s Charizard and Gary’s Blastoise. Using Charizard’s flight and the arena’s rough terrain as part of his battle strategy, Ash manages to overcome Charizard’s type disadvantage to score the win over his rival.
Ash befriends Lucario
Lucario and the Mystery of Mew, the eighth Pokémon film, and the last to feature Veronica Taylor as the voice of Ash Ketchum, is easily one of the most popular, thanks to the inclusion of the fan-favourite Pokémon Lucario. After accidentally freeing a Lucario trapped within an old staff, Ash discovers that he has a powerful Aura, and is chosen by Mew to save the mystical tree of beginning. Unfortunately, Lucario has been left deeply mistrustful of humans after his previous Trainer, Sir Aaron, trapped him in the staff.
However, over the course of their journey, Ash slowly wins Lucario over, and after eventually learning that Aaron only trapped him to save his life, Lucario returns the favour for Ash, giving up his own life so that Ash does not have to die saving the Tree of Beginning. Though heartbroken by the Pokémon’s sacrifice, Ash is comforted by the fact that he now carries Lucario’s aura with him.
What do you think, Supa-Fans? Did your faves get a mention? Let us know your favourite Ash Ketchum moments on Facebook and Twitter!