Opinions and Stories

Reflecting on 20 Years of Pokémon anime!

Check out Kostas’ review of the anime as we relive the last 20 years!


A young girl named May was on her way to Professor Birch’s lab so she could start her adventure as a Pokémon trainer. However, Professor Birch was busy healing Ash’s Pikachu, who had gotten sick. Pikachu was better by the time Team Rocket attacked, and defeated them, but with May’s bike getting roasted because of Pikachu’s Thunderbolt. May then decided to travel with Ash!

Featured Characters

May holding a Pokémon egg!

May: At first, May didn’t actually want to become a Pokémon trainer. She didn’t really like Pokémon either. She was using the “trainer” gig as an excuse to can travel around the region of Hoenn. However this changed eventually. After spending some time with her Pokémon, she loved them and became a Pokémon Coordinator.

Max: Max is May’s young brother. He joined Ash, Brock, and May so he can travel with them. Despite the fact he was still young and didn’t own any Pokémon, he knew many things, especially about Pokémon.

Drew: Drew is a Pokémon Coordinator. He was May’s biggest rival, as they competed in many contests together.

Harley: Harley is another Pokémon Coordinator. He even tricked May and gave her bad advice on purpose so she would lose.

Pokémon caught by Ash

Episode 278, You Never Can Taillow: The group got attacked by a horde of Taillow and Ash decided to catch one!

Episode 281, Tree’s a Crowd: Ash caught Treecko, who was living with many other Treecko and was taking care of a very big tree.

Ash and Treecko having a battle!

Episode 297, Gone Corphisin’: After the group encountered a strong Corphish, Ash wanted to catch it and succeeded.

Episode 332, All Torkoal, No Play: Ash and his friends noticed some Steel type Pokémon attacking a Torkoal. Ash helped it to beat a Steelix and Torkoal wanted to join them!

Episode 382, Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snorunt: Snorunt was a Pokémon who caused trouble and played pranks on Ash; it stole his case with badges and had a battle with him. Ash won and caught it!

Pokémon evolved

Ash’s Glalie using Double Team!

Episode 340, Exploud and Clear!: Ash meets a trainer whose Loudred is behaving strangely, and he notices the same for his Treecko. Both Pokémon have a battle and evolve at the same time!

Episode 354, That’s Just Swellow: Ash and his friends learn about PokéRinger, a competition for Flying type Pokémon. Ash joined with Taillow and when he was against James from Team Rocket, Taillow evolved!

Episode 397, Rhapsody in Drew: Snorunt was training to master Ice Beam but it couldn’t do it yet. When Team Rocket arrived, Snorunt got hit and right after this, it evolved into Galie and mastered Ice Beam!

Best battles

Grovyle’s abillity overgrow!

Episode 344, Balance of Power: It was time for Ash to battle Norman, May’s and Max’s father. Norman started the battle with Slakoth, and Ash with Pikachu. Slakoth seemed to be a difficult opponent for Pikachu and Ash switched to Torkoal, who knocked out Slakoth with Flamethrower. However, Norman’s next Pokémon, Vigoroth, knocked out Torkoal with just one Scratch. Later, Pikachu defeated it thanks to its ability, Static, but it was so tired after the battle that it fainted too. The last battle was Norman’s Slaking against Ash’s Grovyle. Slaking was way stronger than Grovyle. However, Grovyle’s Ability, Overgrow, activated and he managed to win against Slaking with Leaf Blade.

Episode 402 and 403, “Shocks and Bonds” and “A Judgment Brawl”: In the Hoenn League’s round of 32, Ash had a battle against a trainer named Katie. She started with Venomoth but she switched to her Golduck, who defeated Ash’s first Pokémon, Torkoal. Ash sent out Pikachu but Katie switched again, this time to her Dugtrio, who managed to win against Pikachu. Ash’s Glalie knocked out Dugtrio and Misdreavus, but it was stopped by Misdreavus’ Destiny Bond.

Ash’s Swellow against Katie’s Scizor!

The next two Pokémon were Ash’s Corphish and Katie’s Golduck. Despite being confused from Golduck’s Confusion, Corphish knocked it out with Vice Grip. Next, Ash’s Swellow defeated Katie’s Scizor with Aerial Ace after a Double Team. Katie’s last Pokémon was Walrein, who easily knocked out both Corphish and Swellow. Ash’s remaining Pokémon was Grovyle. After an intense battle, Grovyle won with a strong Leaf Blade that sent Walrein flying.

League Position: Top 8!

Battle Frontier

After his journey in Hoenn Region, Ash decided to challenge the Battle Frontier in Kanto. Brock, May, and Max decided to go too. Also, when they were about to leave from Pallet Town, Phanpy wanted to join Ash and of course he accepted! Ash’s main goal was to collect seven symbols, challenging the Frontier Brains: Noland, Greta, Tucker, Lucy, Spencer, Anabel, and Brandon.

Pokémon caught by Ash

Since Ash had Pokémon from the Hoenn Region with him, he only caught one Pokémon in episode 456, “Channeling the Battle Zone!” – an Aipom that was following him.

Ash and Aipom!

Pokémon evolved

Ash’s Sceptile against May’s Blaziken!

Episode 428, “Reversing the Changes”: Ash was fighting Team Rocket and Phanpy was about to do a Rollout attack, but suddenly it evolved into Donphan and also learned Hyper Beam.

Episode 435, “Odd Pokémon Out!”: Grovyle fell in love with a Meganium who belonged to Nurse Joy. Inconveniently, the same thing happened to a Tropius. Grovyle and Tropius were fighting, when Team Rocket appeared and tried to take both Meganium and Tropius. That is when Grovyle evolved into Sceptile.

Best battles

Episode 410, “The Symbol Life”: Ash challenged the first Frontier Brain, Noland to a battle. Noland actually had many Pokémon and told Ash to decide which Pokémon would like to battle against. However, Noland was also friends with a wild Articuno, who flew with Nolan’s plane on occasion. Ash, being Ash, decided to battle Articuno with Charizard. At the start, Charizard seemed in an excellent form, hitting Articuno with Flamethrower and Dragon Breath. However Articuno, as expected from a Legendary, was very strong and countered with Ice Beam and Water Pulse. Ash tried to finish it with Overheat, but Articuno countered it again with Water Pulse. Articuno was ready to finish Charizard with Steel Wing but Charizard caught it and finished it with Seismic Toss. This battle was also the first time a Legendary was defeated by a non-legendary in the anime. This happened 3 more times in the series, although only one other was a true 1-on-1.

Pikachu attacking Regice with Volt Tackle!

Episode 464, “Pace – The Final Frontier”: After losing against Brandon twice, Ash called his original team of Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and Charizard to battle against him. Brandon’s first Pokémon was Dusclops who beat Charizard because it used Seismic Toss, a move which doesn’t affect Ghost type Pokémon. Then Bulbasaur defeated it with a powerful Solar Beam. Brandon’s next Pokémon was Ninjask and Ash’s was Squirtle. Ash’s Pokémon proceeded to claim victory with Skull Bash. Brandon chose Solrock who defeated Squirtle with Solar Beam. After this, both Bulbasaur and Solrock knocked each other out, with both Pokémon using Solar Beam. The last 2 Pokémon were Brandon’s Regice and Ash’s Pikachu. Pikachu managed to get some hits in with Iron Tail and Thunderbolt. Unfortunately, Regice trapped Pikachu twice with some pillars created from its Ice Beam and used Rest. Regice used Ice Beam and this hit directly on Pikachu, as a result, Pikachu was inside a huge block of Ice. However, Pikachu managed to escape and used Volt Tackle, while dodging Ice Beam from Regice. Volt Tackle hit Regice, who was unable to battle and Ash finally won against Brandon.