Ash Ketchum is leaving the Pokémon franchise along with his adorable sidekick, Pikachu, after a successful 25-year career as the world’s greatest Pokémon trainer to make way for a new generation of stories.
In Japan, Ash and Pikachu’s Pokémon adventures will conclude with an 11-part series starting on 13 January 2023 with the conclusion series being released worldwide later that year.
There is no need to worry though, the Pokémon anime series isn’t going to end anytime soon. In this latest news of Ash Ketchum leaving, the announcement is actually a sign of the start of a brand-new Pokémon series, which will feature two brand-new characters (Roy and Liko) and three Generation IX starter pocket monsters from Paldea, where Pokémon Scarlet and Violet are based, as well as two upcoming starter pocket monsters (Sprigatito, Fuecoco, and Quaxly).
The official announcement was communicated via Pokémon’s official Twitter account and can be found in the link below.
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
In the wake of the announcement, it appears that many Pokémon fans have taken to searching Google for potential clues to Ash’s ultimate fate. This is because they understand that there is a possibility that Ash actually dies at the end of his Pokémon run.
Our expectation is that this will not be the case (it is a kid’s show after all), but we are eager to find out how the series will conclude the story of this classic character.
A little over 1200 episodes of the Pokémon anime have been produced, each voiced by legendary Japanese voice actress Rika Matsumoto.
Ash was first introduced in the Pokémon anime series, which premiered in Japan in 1997 and was later dubbed into English for international release. The series follows Ash, a young Pokémon trainer, as he travels through the Pokémon world, collecting and battling with various types of Pokémon.
Throughout the series, Ash has been depicted as a determined and adventurous young trainer, always striving to become the best Pokémon trainer in the world. He is accompanied by a diverse cast of characters, including his loyal Pikachu, his best friend Misty, and his rival Gary.
In addition to the anime series, Ash has also appeared in numerous Pokémon movies, video games, and other media. He has been voiced by a variety of voice actors in different languages, including Sarah Natochenny in English.
Ash has become a popular and iconic character within the Pokémon franchise, and his adventures have been enjoyed by millions of fans around the world.
Ash’s original companions from the series will also return in this swan-song series, along with several fan favorites. One of these companions is Brock, the original leader of the Pewter City gym, where Ash first earned his gym badge against Brock’s Onix Pokémon. Another is Misty, the water Pokémon that Ash memorably defeated during a storm in the early days of the show.
I suppose it is inevitable that this announcement would take place at a time when the most recent Pokémon series in Japan has reached what feels like a natural climax. As a result of playing the World Coronation Series for over two decades, Ash finally achieved his lifelong dream of becoming the most prominent Pokémon trainer in the world. A dream he has held since childhood.
With this historic victory, he decided to give up the championship-winning Pokémon that had led him to the iconic victory in order to embark on a brand-new journey with the help of his trusty Pokémon, Pikachu, and the canine-like Lucario, guiding him along the way. However, Pokémon fans will no longer be able to follow his adventures as they have for the last 25 years, at least as they have been accustomed to.
Following the conclusion of Pokémon World Coronation Series’ Masters Eight Tournament, which features Ash Ketchum, Pikachu, and his other Pokémon, the upcoming story is scheduled to debut after the current season of Pokémon Ultimate Journeys: The Series.
Does this mean we will never see Ash again? Is this really the last time he will see him? In addition to being the face of the franchise and show, it is my belief that there will be more published adventures featuring Ash and Pikachu in the future. Whether it’s television, film, or video games.