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A theory about Ash Ketchum

Greninjaman

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Throughout the first 4 regions, we see Ash grow as a trainer. At the Sinnoh League, he calls on his older Pokemon. Black and White starts in way that says that the writers wanted to replace Ash. I mean, why else did they start the saga like that? What are your thoughts on this? Was Ash intended to be retired after Sinnoh? Seeing as how inconsistent he has been between the BW, XY, and SM sagas. In BW, he acts like a noob, making mistakes that he should not have been making, XY has Ash more like DP Ash. SM Ash seems to be more laid back and not interested in battling and traveling.
 
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Rockapheller

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I have read on the Internet that Ash was meant to be changed in Unova, but the idea was later cancelled. I never had a reliable source on that, so I doubt if it is even true. But even as a theory, it's a strong one. That being said, with the exception of Ash acting like a brand-new trainer in the early Unova [and this is due to the series being meant for throwbacks to the original series], Ash doesn't "reset" himself at all. It is only his attitude and characteristics that, less or more, change, but not himself in the core. As an example, Ash doesn't train/travel and isn't battle enthusiast in Alola, but he still carries his knowledge of Pokémon and anything else he had gained throughout his journey across several regions so far.
 

Greninjaman

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Would you be doing your office work while on a nice vacation?

Ash is on a vacation to Alola, and not particularly concerned about only training all the time as a result.
I guess you have a point there...
 

KrspaceT

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I've always assumed the theory myself, with a few additional caveats to it.

  1. That Tobias was a really, really late addition.
  2. The Ash vs Paul fight was meant to be the final round
 

Hidden Mew

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While the theory of Ash being replaced in BW does kind of make sense, especially when the marketing for the fifth generation was emphasizing that only new Pokemon were available during the storyline, I'm pretty sure that this was just a fan theory that gained attention due to how BW was received. Ash had been the main character for over ten years at the time BW started. That's far too late in the game to replace the main character. Even if the writers wanted to replace him, they most likely couldn't because of just how iconic/recognizable Ash had become for the anime. Replacing Ash with a new character could have worked if they did it much earlier like in Johto or AG, but not over a decade later. It just would have been too much of a gamble for them to actually go for.

Plus, I still don't think Ash in BW was that bad. He still had some terrible moments like most of his battles with Trip, especially their first match, the Nimbasa Gym match and the Virbank Gym battle, but upon rewatching the series, I think that the problem came more from Ash's underdeveloped BW team rather than Ash himself. I can see why people still see him as a significant regression. Losing to an inexperienced Snivy was a horrible way to start off the series, it does leave a lasting impression on the audience and it is jarring coming after DP Ash. Even so, he still had some good battles/moments. If the series started off on a better note and his team was more developed with a few more evolutions, then I don't think BW Ash would be seen as such a significant downgrade from DP Ash.

SM Ash still likes to battle, but it just doesn't come up as often compared to other series. I like Ash's upbeat personality in this series, but that is still pretty jarring to see him rarely bring up the Island Challenge. Even training with his Pokemon doesn't happen that often. I wouldn't say that this is because Ash is just on vacation in Alola. Going to school isn't really a vacation, even though the Pokemon School barely feels like a school at this point and I still don't know what Ash learns there that he couldn't by traveling around the region. SM is more of a slice of life kind of series where instead of Ash traveling around with his friends, he stays at the same place having different adventures with his friends. Whenever Ash does battle, his skills are perfectly fine, so I think that the issue has more to do with the Island Challenge being practically an afterthought in the series rather than Ash himself, although Ash rarely bringing it up does still feel really out of character for him.
 

DarkraiKnight

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Plus, I still don't think Ash in BW was that bad. He still had some terrible moments like most of his battles with Trip, especially their first match, the Nimbasa Gym match and the Virbank Gym battle, but upon rewatching the series, I think that the problem came more from Ash's underdeveloped BW team rather than Ash himself.
I disagree with this wholeheartedly. During the battle with Roxie, Ash had two moments of pretty genius strategy -- using Boldore to slow Roxie's Koffing down with Sandstorm, and then defeating Koffing with a combination of Energy Ball and String Shot from Leavanny. Plus, before the battle, Roxie had already been established as a superboss among Unova's Gym Leaders (what with the exposition from all her defeated opponents and the fact that when Ash and co. got to the Gym, Roxie had just finished up defeating a Trainer's Gothitelle with presumably only her Koffing). All things considered, Ash actually did quite well in that fight.
 

prog rocker

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Well, Ash was supposed to be replaced at the end of the Indigo League, but then Pokémon 2 entered development hell and threw 90% of the game to the trash can, so they had to make the Orange Islands. I think that may have considered replacing him at the end of the Johto series judging by what Takeshi Shudo wanted to do with the fourth movie before they axed the GS Ball subplot, but replacing him at the BW era would have been too late in my opinion.
 

Hidden Mew

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I disagree with this wholeheartedly. During the battle with Roxie, Ash had two moments of pretty genius strategy -- using Boldore to slow Roxie's Koffing down with Sandstorm, and then defeating Koffing with a combination of Energy Ball and String Shot from Leavanny. Plus, before the battle, Roxie had already been established as a superboss among Unova's Gym Leaders (what with the exposition from all her defeated opponents and the fact that when Ash and co. got to the Gym, Roxie had just finished up defeating a Trainer's Gothitelle with presumably only her Koffing). All things considered, Ash actually did quite well in that fight.
Admittedly, Ash did better during that battle than the Nimbasa Gym battle. He did have some good moments of strategy like the examples you mentioned, but I still don't think it was a good outing for Ash. I know that they established Roxie as a powerhouse even among the other Unova Gym Leaders, but needing a full team just to take down three of her Pokemon just didn't paint a good image of Ash's Unova team. There were also moments that made the victory feel incredibly cheap like when Roxie gave Ash's Pignite a Peacha Berry to cure its poison and the last match ultimately being won due to Pikachu's Static ability, which rarely actually comes into play. The fact that it was the last badge Ash needed really didn't help matters either. It didn't make Ash look like he was ready to take on the Unova League when his last badge felt cheap, especially when there were already a few too many last minute evolution that gave him other Gym badges.

I understand that they wanted to hype up Roxie for B2/W2, but I think that it backfired and made her too strong at Ash's expense. Their hands were kind of tied since they didn't want Ash to battle against Drayden. Considering how underdeveloped his BW team was, I don't think Ash defeating Drayden would have been much better. It isn't the worst Gym battle in the series, but even with some of the bright spots in it, I don't think of the Virbank Gym as a good moment for BW Ash.

Well, Ash was supposed to be replaced at the end of the Indigo League, but then Pokémon 2 entered development hell and threw 90% of the game to the trash can, so they had to make the Orange Islands. I think that may have considered replacing him at the end of the Johto series judging by what Takeshi Shudo wanted to do with the fourth movie before they axed the GS Ball subplot, but replacing him at the BW era would have been too late in my opinion.
I don't recall hearing any information about Ash being replaced at the end of the Indigo League. I know that the show was originally going to cover the first generation games, but I've never heard about the writers actually considering replacing Ash or that he was supposed to be gone by the end of the Indigo League.
 

prog rocker

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Huh? I thought that was the original plan.

EDIT: Okay, you're right. That was speculation on my part. Now I think that there was a chance of Ash continuing in Johto no matter what.
 

martianmister

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What do I think about this? People needs to stop lying about the show, I think. It's just pathetic.
 

prog rocker

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But I was not lying for lying. I just thought that they would replace Ash seeing how it would be seen as the end of his arc, at least, until someone reminded me that they could have still continue with Ash, even though Red was possibly a Gym Leader at that time. The other part was thanks to the whole "Pokémon rebellion" thing that would have made the whole anime in a difficult situation unless they pulled something like Digimon Tamers and did the next season as an alternate dimension or something.

Sorry if I sounded like a liar.
 

martianmister

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But I was not lying for lying.
I'm not accusing anyone here with lying. People are talking about these rumors since forever. Someone created these lies back then for some reason, and unsuspecting people still believe that these rumors as true.
 

Greninjaman

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True. BUT seeing how Black and White starts, they may have thought to do that, but changed at the last minute. Not sure why they didn't alter the beginning of the first episode of BW. Also, Did Ash really become inconsistent after DP? Or is that how people are looking at it as?
 

prog rocker

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Well, his Pokémon apparently lose strength with each season (which is kinda justified), at least at first, so I feel the inconsistence was there from the beginning. Then again, if Ash's Pokémon didn't get their levels restarted the Gym battles wouldn't be worth watching since it would be Ash curb-stomping everyone. On the other hand, Ash beating Whitney that way would have been cathartic.
 

Greninjaman

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Yeah. Maybe having Pikachu there all the time was not a smart move (I know it's the mascot). That would solve a lot of problems.
 
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