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Flow of Time in the Anime

T.R.U.T.H.兵士課、第13支部の軍人・ラミィ・アッザべル
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Other than no aging there's also some other shows where only a few characters get to age while others don't. In Family Guy Meg started at 16 and had her 18th birthday later on while Stewie's still one. I could see Pokemon working more or less like it in a case Masato appears as a Pokemon trainer while Satoshi's still be 10.

It'd be similar to when The Sims introduced the NPCs aging system but only a few could age.
 
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Honestly "Satoshi should be an adult now" makes little sense to me, unless you believe that it took him literally three/four years to collect eight gym badges.
 
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Honestly "Satoshi should be an adult now" makes little sense to me, unless you believe that it took him literally three/four years to collect eight gym badges.
That wouldn't be necessary at all. The seasonal progression seems to suggest:
  • Kanto: About a year and three months
  • Orange Islands: About two months
  • Johto: About nine months
  • Hoenn: About nine-to-ten and a half months
  • Battle Frontier: About a year, give or take a month and a half
  • Sinnoh: About nine months
  • Unova and Decolore: About ten and a half months
  • An unexplained gap of about six months
  • Kalos: About a year
Which, taken together with Ash's birth date in the novelizations, would suggest he'd be nearly eighteen (and therefore right on the cusp of legal adulthood) going into Alola. I haven't found any information past that yet, but I'm assuming that Ash is there for at least a full Japanese school year, which would suggest he'd be almost nineteen going into Pokémon Journeys.

All of which is nevertheless contradicted by the narrator's assertion at the beginning of Unova that Ash is still ten even after almost five years in-universe. Again, however, I take this to be a marketing tactic only and not necessarily canon, like the presence of an anachronistic Nintendo console in the player's room during the Generation III and IV games (which should be contemporaneous with I and II).
 
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How and why?
According to this analysis (which admittedly comes with its own flaws, but it's the best I can find without spending a boatload of money I don't have on DVDs), the Hoenn arc occurs from the summer to around late autumn or early winter. The Battle Frontier, meanwhile, appears to extend from one winter to the next.
 
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According to this analysis (which admittedly comes with its own flaws, but it's the best I can find without spending a boatload of money I don't have on DVDs), the Hoenn arc occurs from the summer to around late autumn or early winter. The Battle Frontier, meanwhile, appears to extend from one winter to the next.
How can you identify the seasons?
 
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How can you identify the seasons?
The author of the above-linked analysis cites original Japanese dialogue, occasions where the sunrise/sunset times can be discerned, and other visual and contextual clues. If I ever find myself in a position where I can check it myself, I'll be sure to do so and attempt to verify the claims.
 
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The author of the above-linked analysis cites original Japanese dialogue, occasions where the sunrise/sunset times can be discerned, and other visual and contextual clues. If I ever find myself in a position where I can check it myself, I'll be sure to do so and attempt to verify the claims.
The Game Theorists YouTube channel also did a similar analysis; however I personally disagree with some of the lengths of time they arrived at since they used the Pikachu Shorts to help discern the passage of time. (They concluded that Ash spent nearly 3 years in Johto since there were 3 Christmas Pikachu Shorts set in Johto! That's way too much, and Pikachu Shorts are almost most certainly non-canon.)

However, the rest of their reasoning is pretty sound and lines up quite well with the Satoshipedia article.
 
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Y'know, I could probably buy the "you're not supposed to think about it" argument a lot more if only the anime hadn't been so nostalgia pandering as of late with Pokémon Journeys (to use the dub title). The Bulbasaur Garden knockoff and the Ho-Oh episode were especially egregious with the marketing and whatnot.

Basically the more the anime tries to bring up the past twenty plus years of history, the more it causes me to think about how Ash has been on the same adventure yet is still eternally ten. :/
 
This, too, shall pass...
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Y'know, I could probably buy the "you're not supposed to think about it" argument a lot more if only the anime hadn't been so nostalgia pandering as of late with Pokémon Journeys (to use the dub title). The Bulbasaur Garden knockoff and the Ho-Oh episode were especially egregious with the marketing and whatnot.

Basically the more the anime tries to bring up the past twenty plus years of history, the more it causes me to think about how Ash has been on the same adventure yet is still eternally ten. :/
The show has spent a long time in a strange limbo between episodic (at least between series', not so much within the same series) and serialized, sometimes skirting closer to one line or the other.
Edit: At this point I'm not even sure Ash's age is the weirdest result of it, honestly.
 
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Aqua Ninja Frog
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The show has spent a long time in a strange limbo between episodic (at least between series', not so much within the same series) and serialized, sometimes skirting closer to one line or the other.
Edit: At this point I'm not even sure Ash's age is the weirdest result of it, honestly.
How so?
 
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I'm not sure which part you're asking about so I'll just answer for both.
Basically, events in the show clearly "happened"--characters learn things, develop, grow and improve themselves, they remember previous events and develop relationships...then the next series starts and there's a good chance much of that growth will vanish, and Ash in particular tends to have sudden competence shifts.

As for weirder things than Ash's age--that's fun to joke about but I find many animated shows ignore that sort of thing. Weirder, I think, is how Ash Oaking everything at the end of a series feels contradictory to his characterization the rest of the time as someone who loves his Pokémon and wants to spend time with them.

What reason does he have not to bring any of his Pokémon other than Pikachu with him on vacation to Alola? When he's going on research missions why not bring a full party for safety and utility reasons?
 
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I'm not sure which part you're asking about so I'll just answer for both.
Basically, events in the show clearly "happened"--characters learn things, develop, grow and improve themselves, they remember previous events and develop relationships...then the next series starts and there's a good chance much of that growth will vanish, and Ash in particular tends to have sudden competence shifts.

As for weirder things than Ash's age--that's fun to joke about but I find many animated shows ignore that sort of thing. Weirder, I think, is how Ash Oaking everything at the end of a series feels contradictory to his characterization the rest of the time as someone who loves his Pokémon and wants to spend time with them.

What reason does he have not to bring any of his Pokémon other than Pikachu with him on vacation to Alola? When he's going on research missions why not bring a full party for safety and utility reasons?
So time DOES flow in the anime, it's just not mentioned. I do agree that Ash tends to reset after each saga. Something tells me that the show would have been better off swapping Ash out after each region.

About Ash's Pokemon: I think the reason Ash leaves behind his Pokemon when he goes to a new region is so he can start fresh. That's what he said when he got to Petalburg. Sure it would be a good idea to bring a squad of say, water types when going into a ancient ruins for research and the place is known to have Rock/Ground/Fire types, but Ash has so many Pokemon at this point that it's impossible to give them all screen time.
 
All life matters. Not matter age or skin color!
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I woudnt even try to explain the flow of time. It would contradict eachother.

Some things we know:
-Gou and Koharu went to prof Oaks summer camp one year before Ash and Serena.
-Both May and Dawn got ribbons in Jotho, while we never saw a contest here
-Cilan met both Brock and Clemont, so time passed
 
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I woudnt even try to explain the flow of time. It would contradict eachother.

Some things we know:
-Gou and Koharu went to prof Oaks summer camp one year before Ash and Serena.
-Both May and Dawn got ribbons in Jotho, while we never saw a contest here
-Cilan met both Brock and Clemont, so time passed
That's true. Ash has been going for so long at this point that time seems to not have any meaning in the anime.
 
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While the characters don't age, they still mature as people. In the end, isn't that what matters the most?

A few examples when the characters show emotional development and maturity:

  • Serena's mother commenting how she has learned how to cook and take care of herself at the end of XY. She also has the courage to kiss Satoshi when she was really nervous and awkward around him in the beginning of the series.
  • Haruka/May setting out on her own journey at the end of AG when she was initially afraid of Pokémon and didn't know what she wanted to do in life.
  • Hikari crying and getting depressed everytime she lost but became stronger as the series progressed.
  • Takeshi/Brock becoming a doctor because his time together with Satoshi made him realize that he can make a difference in the world and have a career which he originally thought he couldn't since he had to take care of his family.
  • Satoshi doesn't take pity badges anymore and even got mad at both Skyla and Volkner when they suggested that he doesn't need to prove his strenght.
  • Lillie getting over her fear of Pokémon and her PTSD. She also sets out on a journey to find her missing father.
  • Mao/Mallow coming to terms with the grief of losing her mother when Shaymin symbolically flies off during the credits.
  • Team Rocket sacrificing themselves so that Arbok and Weezing can get away when these two Pokémon described them as "horrible people" during the episode with the giant Pokémon.
  • Pikachu acting like a brat in the early episodes but eventually became a responsible parent to Togepi during the Summer Vacation short.
  • Masato/Max finally admitting that he is still young and immature and promises to challenge Satoshi when he eventually becomes a trainer.
  • Bonnie's speech after Dedenne ran away crying during the last episode of XY.
  • Kasumi/Misty overcoming her fear of Gyarados, mastering Mega evolution and improving her gym in SM when she was initially anxious about leaving Takeshi and Satoshi (the dream she had during the mermaid episode when they disappear into a green cloud).
 
怪しいことも何一つない。
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Team Rocket sacrificing themselves so that Arbok and Weezing can get away when these two Pokémon described them as "horrible people" during the episode with the giant Pokémon.
They did?! Arbo explained to Nyasu that Pokemon only do bad things if their masters are bad, but by no means called them "horrible people"! In fact, that episode demonstrated quite clearly that Arbo and Dogas were extremely attached to those two, even in early Kanto!

(Which is not, of course, to say that the TRio haven't developed SIGNIFICANTLY during the course of the series. In fact, I'm watching Kanto now, and they are (Kojiro most of all) almost unrecognisable compared with the characters they have become. Nyasu is the most similar but has gone from being jarringly unintegrated into the group, to the true linchpin. Musashi has mellowed substantially. Kojiro has almost undergone a 180 degree transformation from a flighty, unintelligent dependant to the mech-designing, solid, straight-man.)
 
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They did?! Arbo explained to Nyasu that Pokemon only do bad things if their masters are bad, but by no means called them "horrible people"! In fact, that episode demonstrated quite clearly that Arbo and Dogas were extremely attached to those two, even in early Kanto!

(Which is not, of course, to say that the TRio haven't developed SIGNIFICANTLY during the course of the series. In fact, I'm watching Kanto now, and they are (Kojiro most of all) almost unrecognisable compared with the characters they have become. Nyasu is the most similar but has gone from being jarringly unintegrated into the group, to the true linchpin. Musashi has mellowed substantially. Kojiro has almost undergone a 180 degree transformation from a flighty, unintelligent dependant to the mech-designing, solid, straight-man.)
"Pokémon are only bad because the trainer is bad."

In other words they are blaming Team Rocket for their actions when they attack innocent people and Pokémon by claiming that their trainers are a bad influence.

But then again "bad" could just imply that they don't like being thieves rather than disliking them as actual people.

They also have their backstories like Musashi living in poverty which explains why they do the things they do but I don't know how much their Pokémon know about their past.

But I think we can all agree that during the moment when they had to escape to protect the other Pokémon and Team Rocket shielded them with their bodies neither of them were "bad". If anything Team Rocket's selfless sacrifice is what inspired them to protect the other Pokémon. So maybe what they were saying was true after all.

I think that is what is so interesting about Team Rocket. Everything isn't black and white.
 
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