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Do you like how the writers have wrapped up most past characters during their returns so far?

Sai

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Gary is a member of Project Mew and heavily involved in Go's goal. We see him battle Moltres, Articuno and the new Regi's.

Iris became Unova Champion, Axew finally fully evolved to Haxorus and she made it to the Masters 8.

Serena struck out on her own becoming a star coordinator, will be involved with an idol duo with Lisia and she takes all of Ash's encouragement with her to heart. She now feels fully independent.

Lillie and her family finally found Mohn. Kiawe and Sophocles also got some nice spotlight. We see Kukui's baby born from the end of SM.

Brock is now a full fledged Pokémon Doctor, something we didn't quite get to see in his SM cameos. He also has Blissey and a Mega Steelix.

Misty has Mega Gyarados and is now portrayed as a stronger Gym leader than she ever was before.

Bonnie/Clemont didn't quite get any major advancement but he's still shown to he a strong Gym leader and Bunnelby evolved.

Dawn unfortunately didn't get any advancement here but we know she did 3 contest circuits off-screen and had major roles in villains and legendary plots. We saw her meet Cynthia, Brock and Ash again and her role in the Arceus specials was well done. She also had the first bond with Koharu. But she kinda got screwed over with no new pokemon or goal advancement.

Aside from MIA characters like May, Max, Tracey and Cilan, Dawn is the only one not to get a major advancement to her story so far.

I hope whatever they plan to do with Paul is handled well.
 

cricketlaxwolvesbandy

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Serena “fully independent”? Does this mean she’s independent from Ash as in doesn’t want to marry him anymore?
 

Emelie

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I wish Dawn and Serena got better return episodes. Serena still only has three Pokémon and they dumbed down contests. Some of the Dawn episodes feel very random, almost like fillers.

Interesting how she might become an idol since they aren't allowed to date. Maybe she hid the ribbon to prevent her rabid fans from getting jealous lol.
 

Sai

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Serena's Braixen also evolved. She doesn't really need a new pokemon at the moment since the ep focused on sylveon.
 

Orchid

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On the one hand, yes, I think it's great that we're seeing all these older characters making progress towards their goals and seemingly tying up any loose ends with their stories. Even if they haven't made huge advancements since last time we saw them, it's still nice that all of their returns are actually contributing to the plot in some way.

On the other hand, it kind of makes me sad, because in some cases it feels a lot like we might not ever see them again after this series. :(
 

Sai

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If we do go back to one region we definitely won't be seeing most of these characters again for years or decades if ever. It does feel like many of these eps are written as an endgame or last hurrah for a lot of these returns. Which would make sense if you look at how long ago most characters didn't appear prior. Even Misty went a 12 year gap with no return, and Dawn a 9 year gap prior to recent series.
 

Orchid

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If we do go back to one region we definitely won't be seeing most of these characters again for years or decades if ever. It does feel like many of these eps are written as an endgame or last hurrah for a lot of these returns. Which would make sense if you look at how long ago most characters didn't appear prior. Even Misty went a 12 year gap with no return, and Dawn a 9 year gap prior to recent series.
Exactly — it feels like they're going out of their way to give some of them a good send-off, before they retire them from the series as a whole. Mainly Iris and Serena in particular. (edit: Butch & Cassidy, too!)

I'm happy they're doing that, and I much prefer it over simply letting them fade into the background as they've done in the past, but I can't help but feel a little wistful about it.
 
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Sai

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It's amazing to see how far some of these characters have come...


and then there's Dawn who feels like she's stuck in a timewarp having not achieved much of anything.
Small part of me hopes she becomes a Top coordinator if she appears once more, even if the win is off-screen.
 

jjliang

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Will either Tracey, May, Max, and/or Cilan's absences be explained in the show? Do you think at least one character is probably going to be referred to via the past tense if they were given the reverse Mr. Hooper treatment?
 

Mew2

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It's amazing to see how far some of these characters have come...


and then there's Dawn who feels like she's stuck in a timewarp having not achieved much of anything.
That's why I think there's still a chance of seeing Dawn win a Grand Festival on screen since the opening indicates that she will appear at least one more time. Everyone else seems to have either made progress towards their goals or has outright achieved them. The one that stands out is Dawn. And Dawn is the female player character of the most recent remake and possibly, even likely, the main female character of the most recently released Pokémon game. And note that both games are doing quite well sales wise.
 

Broseph08

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Exactly — it feels like they're going out of their way to give some of them a good send-off, before they retire them from the series as a whole. Mainly Iris and Serena in particular. (edit: Butch & Cassidy, too!)

I'm happy they're doing that, and I much prefer it over simply letting them fade into the background as they've done in the past, but I can't help but feel a little wistful about it.
I def think Journeys was a one-off made to celebrate the 25th anniversary of the anime so I don't think we'll see returns like this in future series. That said, I don't think they're gone for good even if they do take a long break. It wasn't that long ago that even the idea of Misty coming back to the show seemed impossible, forget about the other companions. Hell, XY made me think we might not get any companion cameos when Iris didn't return. So we might get extended breaks but I don't expect it to permanent.

Iris especially. The BW (and maybe BW2) remakes are up next probably within the next 5-6 years. I think there's zero chance she doesn't show up for that. Characters like Dawn and Serena are tougher but a pop up here and there isn't too hard to imagine
 

Gabo2oo

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They haven't wrapped anything up, except Lillie's storyline. Everyone has simply shown more progress towards their goals in different degrees. In that sense I feel like they're still getting the short end of the stick if this were to be the final series, though I gotta admit they're still getting more than I was expecting.

Brock is now a full fledged Pokémon Doctor, something we didn't quite get to see in his SM cameos. He also has Blissey and a Mega Steelix.
This is incorrect, he's still in-training according to the Arceus OVA.
 

BNSF1995

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I think they're wrapping up all the characters' arcs because the Scarlet & Violet will have a massive change: a timeskip.

Instead of Ash, we'll be focusing on his kid(s). My personal idea for a Gen 9 anime is that the protagonists are Ash and Serena's twin son and daughter, Red and Leaf. Red is a Trainer, Leaf a Coordinator. Red has his mother's kindness, Leaf her father's hot-bloodedness. Red's starter is a Pikachu, Leaf's an Eevee, both descended from Ash's Pikachu and Serena's Sylveon (meaning they have a bunch of Egg Moves).

They travel to the new region because the Indigo League has been temporarily shut down due to an investigation into alleged connections to Team Rocket. They wear the protagonists' clothes because they're attending a school to learn more about battles and contests, before venturing out on their journey in their Gen 3 clothes. During their travels, they meet the children of Misty, Brock, Dawn, Gary, Paul, Goh, and Miette (the latters' child becomes bitter rivals with Leaf, while Paul's kid becomes Red's rival). All the while, they're being pursued by a new TRio consisting of a pair of rookies who are even MORE inept than Jessie and James, with that same talking Meowth trying and failing to teach them how to be Team Rocket material.

Occasionally, we cut back to Kanto to find that, even though they're grown up, married, and parents, Ash, Serena, and their Pokemon still can't help getting into their own misadventures.
 

jjliang

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Do you think anyone will probably ask and explain what happened to May? Do you think there's a chance that she will now be referred to via the past tense due to her being given the reverse Mr. Hooper treatment as a result of KAORI's situation?
 

Broseph08

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I think they're wrapping up all the characters' arcs because the Scarlet & Violet will have a massive change: a timeskip.

Instead of Ash, we'll be focusing on his kid(s). My personal idea for a Gen 9 anime is that the protagonists are Ash and Serena's twin son and daughter, Red and Leaf. Red is a Trainer, Leaf a Coordinator. Red has his mother's kindness, Leaf her father's hot-bloodedness. Red's starter is a Pikachu, Leaf's an Eevee, both descended from Ash's Pikachu and Serena's Sylveon (meaning they have a bunch of Egg Moves).

They travel to the new region because the Indigo League has been temporarily shut down due to an investigation into alleged connections to Team Rocket. They wear the protagonists' clothes because they're attending a school to learn more about battles and contests, before venturing out on their journey in their Gen 3 clothes. During their travels, they meet the children of Misty, Brock, Dawn, Gary, Paul, Goh, and Miette (the latters' child becomes bitter rivals with Leaf, while Paul's kid becomes Red's rival). All the while, they're being pursued by a new TRio consisting of a pair of rookies who are even MORE inept than Jessie and James, with that same talking Meowth trying and failing to teach them how to be Team Rocket material.

Occasionally, we cut back to Kanto to find that, even though they're grown up, married, and parents, Ash, Serena, and their Pokemon still can't help getting into their own misadventures.
Ash is Red in the anime, just like Gary is Blue. Red and Blue will never be in the anime because they've always been there since episode 1
 

Turbo

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I liked all the returns
But for “wrapping” stories
Korinna - Neutral probably ideal first gym leader to bring back for PWC and helped Ash with Lucario but for her “story” doesn't do much
Gary - Yes he suits Project Mew and Goh well and plays a role in his professor dream
Iris - Yes she made a lot of progress and even if she doesn't think so she's practically a dragon master
Dawn - No wasn't the best as it does feel she hasn't progressed in comparison to most others but it wasn't her role so it's fine
Brock - Yes he’s a doctor now!
Sophocles - Yes made some progress towards his astronaut dream
Clemont and Bonnie - Neutral they didn't have stories to really wrap up so them forming back for helping and fun was fine
Serena - Yes got to see her Hoenn journey and some ideal what's next
Lillie and Gladion - Yes wrapped that story up and showed some growth due to the capture
Rest of Alola gang - neutral it wasn't that long since SM so it wasn't that big a deal but Kiawe helped Goh and Lana and Mallow we're cool
Paul - TBD
Again - TBD but he seemingly did his journey to get new keystone and mega stone for Charizard so that's progress and wraps that up
Greninja - if he counts yes still being a hero and helping Ash and his new Pokemon
 

Bendicion

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Misty has Mega Gyarados and is now portrayed as a stronger Gym leader than she ever was before.
Her dream is to be a water pokemon maser though, so no, shes far from being wrapped up with so many things being left unanswered.
 
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