It’s one of these things you never expected to see in a million years. Something that seems so out of left field, you’d think someone was mad if they described it to you.
But in this case, it’s true. The Pokemon anime (at least as we know it) is soon going to come to an end.
Yep, after the current series of Pokemon Journeys (and a few specials), Ash and Pikachu will no longer be the main characters in the series, and the show itself will be completely replaced by one focusing on some new protagonists in Paldea instead! Here’s the announcement about it from the Pokemon Twitter page:
An all-new Pokémon series has been announced!
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
— Pokémon (@Pokemon) December 16, 2022
It’s pretty exciting stuff, and it’s something we’re still shocked is happening here. After all, the current anime has been running for more than 25 years. Who’d have ever expected such a big shake up at this point?
Certainly not us, that’s for sure!
But it does make sense when you think about it. Ash has achieved his goals now, he’s become the Pokemon Master he always dreamed of. He became the champion of Alola back in the Sun and Moon days, and now after the World Coronation Series, he’s become the best Pokemon trainer in the world too, having defeated the likes of Steven, Cynthia and Leon to come out on top.
He's done it! Ash has become a World Champion! 🏆🎉 pic.twitter.com/a2jPb8pym3
— Pokémon (@Pokemon) November 11, 2022
So there’s not really anywhere his story could have gone from here. If he went to Paldea as is, he’d just crush everyone and everything without breaking a sweat. If he lost all his prowess and acted like in past regions? He’d come across as a joke, and all his character development would have been immediately chucked away for no real reason.
There’s no setup that would have made everyone happy here, and any you can imagine would have meant sacrificing the events of the past in the process.
Plus, the formula was getting stale by this point too. Remember, Ash has been 10 for longer than many Pokemon fans have even been alive, and his failures to really get anywhere were starting to get awfully tiresome before the Alola arc as well. So really, things had to change. The world had to move on. You couldn’t just have Ash stuck as a 10 year chasing the same dreams forever.
A show stuck in endless stasis with a permanent reset button hovering overhead at all times isn’t interesting.
Alas, many shows fail to take that hint. Instead of letting the series end, or some new protagonists take the reigns, they continue with the same stale, moribund formula for decades, like with The Simpsons or Family Guy or whoever knows how many other animated sitcoms. The timeline gets more screwed up, the characters never age, and eventually, it becomes clear that the setup is worn out and needs replacing, with the only people interested in seeing it keep going being the execs scared of greenlighting a replacement.
Caption: They certainly lived up to their promise in this clip, didn’t they?
So we’re happy to see the Pokemon anime actually averted this, and ended at the right time. Now Ash and Pikachu can finally get the happy ending they deserve, and a new series can rise from the ashes in 2023, with a fresh cast, interesting setting and all new ideas for stories. Thank you Nintendo and the Pokemon Company, for finally giving the original series the ending it deserves.
Still, what do you think about it? Are you happy to see a new Pokemon anime with new characters take over? What do you think about Ash’s story finally getting wrapped up, 25 years after it first began? And what other franchises do you think should possibly follow suite here?
Leave your thoughts in the comments below, on social media, or on our Discord server today!