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PokeAni Missed Opportunities

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On the other hand, you're exactly doing the same thing that they have done for more than twenty years, to the point it's a borderline running gag. Hell, it was one of the reason Pokémon is the one non-dramatic series where I'm starting to feel darkness-induced audience apathy. Seriously, I would not even look back and even pretend the anime doesn't exist at all. The first times it was alright, but after Tobias, Cameron and Alain where they pulled different Diabolus ex Machinas it was sincerely getting ridiculous.
Could you please clarify what you are trying to say here?

Ash has done the following as of the start of Sun and Moon:
*Entered seven different Pokémon leagues (I'm including the Orange Islands in that count).
*Participated in the Battle Frontier and won
*Defeated several Legendary Pokémon--Articuno, Darkrai, Regice, maybe others I'm forgetting.
*Entered various smaller competitions, winning some of them (ringer competitions, the tournament in Lucario and the Mystery of Mew, etc.)
*In XY we see he can hold his own against Elite Four tier opponents like Alain.
What does Kiawe have in his resume to make him a better trainer than Ash? Kiawe showing better strategies in the league feels like a choreography problem more than anything, possibly because of it was more of a comedy series.
I don't think it is fair to compare twenty years of anime material against Kiawe's lone appearance in this season. Besides, the anime treats anything before Sun and Moon as tangentially related. His worthiness should be measured by what he had exhibited in that season alone.

Really, though, the biggest issue is that Ash losing a league is the single most boring outcome at this point. Letting him win has allowed them to give him a new, higher level goal. There's actual, genuine excitement for Ash's story arc because he's finally actually advanced his arc and it even seems to be a permanent step.
I agree it's nice how they broke out from the league arc but I just don't think its deserved. Melmetal added nothing and it didn't even win the match iirc. The Z-move against Z-move thing was also really dumb. If he had shown better use of his pokemon, the win wouldn't have felt so undeserved imo. We all complained about Tobias and Alain but he had become them here in Alola and hindered their development.

Also, he could pursue whatever he is doing now even though he had lost the league too.
 
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Not exactly. While technically he got a light punishment for his actions in SM and for causing the Team Rainbow Rocket incident in USUM, I think demoting him to the bottom was a worse fate from his point of view, seeing how he borderline considered himself the most important member of the organization and now he's reorganizing boxes in the warehouse.
That is a fair point. I just thought that was too light of a punishment for everything he did in the games, even if it was the worst fate imaginable from Faba's perspective.

I think that's exactly why I didn't think he should even make it to the top 16. It's just an unfunny joke to me. Well the kids probably do like seeing him lose though.
To be fair, I have an easier time believing that Faba could make it to the Top 16 than the bulk of Ash's friends, especially Lillie and Mallow. At least Faba had two fully evolved Pokemon in his team.

SerenaToAlola said:
I brought in Molayne cause I thought it was an opportunity for him to do something memorable or interesting. Hence pairing him up with Sophocles in hopes of some character development. Actually I wouldn't have minded if Sophocles won against him. And maybe Sophocles could take over some of his pokemon or use his ride pokemon in the next round. My main issue with Sophocles making it as far as he did was that he only had Vikavolt which was boring.

As for Samson, I just didn't think he would have been interested in the league. Besides, his character had been sufficiently fleshed out already so I think adding him into the league didn't add much to the anything.
If they had established Molayne more as a trainer instead of a researcher, then maybe his inclusion would have been fine, but I don't think it would have improved the League. Sophocles using Molayne's Pokemon or his Ride Pokemon would have made any progress he made more cheap. Using another trainer's Pokemon in a big competition can have that risk. I can understand finding Vikavolt boring, but that was Sophocles' main battler and the only Pokemon who he could use a Z-Move with. Sophocles' training for the League involved working more with Vikavolt and connecting with it in battle. Suddenly using another Pokemon that he didn't already own wouldn't have made sense with that setup. Sophocles is easily my least favorite of the SM cast, but most of his focused episode that focused on his relationship with Vikavolt were surprisingly good. While I don't think it was entirely believable for Sophocles to put up that much of a fight against Kiawe, it wouldn't have been as meaningful if he was using one of Molayne's Pokemon instead of Vikavolt.

Was Samson's character sufficiently fleshed out already? I don't remember Samson doing anything besides his Pokemon name gag bit every time he showed up. That's a big reason why I don't understand whenever someone say that they hate him. His gag could get annoying, but I didn't think Samson appeared enough or was memorable enough to be hated.

SerenaToAlola said:
True but I thought having someone with a deeper connection to Alola would be a lot more satisfying. Type matchups ain't everything anyway.
Ash does have a deep connection to Alola though. I don't know about having a deeper connection to the region than someone who lived there for their entire life, but that was kind of the point of his brief mental conversation with Pikachu before they defeated Tapu Koko. Alola had become Ash's second home practically and during that moment, he felt the power of Alola even more so than before and that allowed for them to win. Type matchups aren't everything, but since Lycanroc was arguably Gladion's strongest Pokemon, I don't know if Kiawe would have been able to defeat it along with Silvally and Zoroark. Silvally could have easily become a Rock type too, so that would be potentially two Rock types for Kiawe to deal with.

I honestly don't see how winning the League would have benefited Kiawe in the long run. He definitely wouldn't have been able to defeat Professor Kukui and there wouldn't have been emotional weight to their battle like there was with Ash. Ash and Professor Kukui arguably had the strongest bond among the main cast in large part because Kukui fulfilled a role that none of Ash's friends ever could as kind of a father figure. Kiawe vs. Kukui wouldn't have meant anything. Plus, with where Kiawe eventually goes at the end of the series, he didn't need to become the Alola League Champion to get there.

SerenaToAlola said:
Their rivalry never disappeared. They were always challenging each other, over many different things.
That doesn't make them rivals though. Ash and Kiawe were friends first and outside of the first few SM episodes, they never felt like rivals to me. Part of it could be due to the more laid back tone of SM and that Ash's Island Challenge often felt like an afterthought, but I honestly don't believe that there was a rivalry and certainly not by the end of the series.

SerenaToAlola said:
There's always room for a twist.
Having a twist for the shake of it usually doesn't work in my experience.

SerenaToAlola said:
I kind of agree and I do want Ash v Gladion to happen but I think maybe a post league battle would work too?
That really wouldn't have made sense to have their match as a post League battle. Unlike with Kiawe, there was setup for Ash vs. Gladion to happen in the League. Why would they bother to have their Lycanroc battle during the Poni Island arc and showcase Gladion's new Z-Move if they were going to battle after the League? Ash defeating Gladion, his main rival of SM, after Kiawe did, or at least going further than him in this concept of the Alola League, also wouldn't have been as noteworthy. Ash's Lycanroc had a rivalry with Gladion's since it was a Rockruff too. Saving Ash vs. Kiawe for near the end of the series made a lot more sense. We all knew what the outcome was going to be, while there had been setup for Gladion throughout the series.

SerenaToAlola said:
What I think is Ash shouldn't have made it that far in the league, simple as that. His strategies were stupid and unrealistic but then again, we're watching a kids show. Aha.
I thought that his battles were good starting with his match against Guzma, but that does mean that the first two battles were bad. His match against Faba wasn't terrible, but it felt too cheap or unsatisfying to start off the League. His match against Hau is rightfully infamous for its terrible writing. But other than that, I didn't think Ash's performance in the League was nearly that bad. I could understand finding some of his strategies unrealistic, but the anime often does have strategies or concepts that could never work within the context of the game, such as Counter vs. Counter.

I don't think it is fair to compare twenty years of anime material against Kiawe's lone appearance in this season. Besides, the anime treats anything before Sun and Moon as tangentially related. His worthiness should be measured by what he had exhibited in that season alone.
Even if we just go by what Ash has done in SM, I'm not sure if I'd say that Kiawe is the stronger trainer. Ash completed the Island Challenge, which involves defeating all four Island Kahunas, his strength was recognized multiple times by Kapu Toko and he had more Pokemon on his team. Granted, Ash's SM team isn't one his best due to the problems with Rowlet and to a lesser degree Melmetal, but he still had more variety in his team and arguably more strength overall. Kiawe is definitely a good trainer, but would he have been able to defeat Ash in a believable manner? More importantly, would winning the League have been better for Kiawe's character than it was for Ash? For me, it's a solid no to both questions. Kiawe gave Ash a good run for his money during their last battle. It was almost a draw, but since that was a one-on-one match, I think Ash would have a potentially easier time with a two-on-two or three-on-three match.

SerenaToAlola said:
I agree it's nice how they broke out from the league arc but I just don't think its deserved. He could pursue whatever he is doing now even though he had lost the league too.
I don't think it would have felt as natural though. Winning the Alola League is probably a big reason why they didn't just go back to the usual Gym battle formula. No one would believe that Ash would have a chance to defeat Leon if he lost yet another League, especially one set on easy mode like the Alola League was.. I would have liked to see a more traditional journey through Galar since I really love the region and its characters, but if we can showcase more of the region and characters through a World Championship format while also giving Ash a higher goal and opening the door for older characters to possibly return, then everyone ideally gets something out of the new setup.
 
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To be fair, I have an easier time believing that Faba could make it to the Top 16 than the bulk of Ash's friends, especially Lillie and Mallow. At least Faba had two fully evolved Pokemon in his team.
Not really. The first round was a Battle Royale. Ash's friends stuck together and helped each other out. Them making it was reasonable.

If they had established Molayne more as a trainer instead of a researcher, then maybe his inclusion would have been fine, but I don't think it would have improved the League. Sophocles using Molayne's Pokemon or his Ride Pokemon would have made any progress he made more cheap. Using another trainer's Pokemon in a big competition can have that risk. I can understand finding Vikavolt boring, but that was Sophocles' main battler and the only Pokemon who he could use a Z-Move with. Sophocles' training for the League involved working more with Vikavolt and connecting with it in battle. Suddenly using another Pokemon that he didn't already own wouldn't have made sense with that setup. Sophocles is easily my least favorite of the SM cast, but most of his focused episode that focused on his relationship with Vikavolt were surprisingly good. While I don't think it was entirely believable for Sophocles to put up that much of a fight against Kiawe, it wouldn't have been as meaningful if he was using one of Molayne's Pokemon instead of Vikavolt.
Once again, you're going by the assumption that nothing else about the series has changed whereas I am writing with regards to alternative developments that could have happened.

I honestly don't see how winning the League would have benefited Kiawe in the long run. He definitely wouldn't have been able to defeat Professor Kukui and there wouldn't have been emotional weight to their battle like there was with Ash. Ash and Professor Kukui arguably had the strongest bond among the main cast in large part because Kukui fulfilled a role that none of Ash's friends ever could as kind of a father figure. Kiawe vs. Kukui wouldn't have meant anything. Plus, with where Kiawe eventually goes at the end of the series, he didn't need to become the Alola League Champion to get there.
This is true.

That doesn't make them rivals though. Ash and Kiawe were friends first and outside of the first few SM episodes, they never felt like rivals to me. Part of it could be due to the more laid back tone of SM and that Ash's Island Challenge often felt like an afterthought, but I honestly don't believe that there was a rivalry and certainly not by the end of the series.
I don't know what else to say aside from the fact that they are. I don't see how they can be interpreted as anything but rivals. You can be friends with your rivals.

That really wouldn't have made sense to have their match as a post League battle. Unlike with Kiawe, there was setup for Ash vs. Gladion to happen in the League. Why would they bother to have their Lycanroc battle during the Poni Island arc and showcase Gladion's new Z-Move if they were going to battle after the League? Ash defeating Gladion, his main rival of SM, after Kiawe did, or at least going further than him in this concept of the Alola League, also wouldn't have been as noteworthy. Ash's Lycanroc had a rivalry with Gladion's since it was a Rockruff too. Saving Ash vs. Kiawe for near the end of the series made a lot more sense. We all knew what the outcome was going to be, while there had been setup for Gladion throughout the series.
True. Ash vs Gladion was a nice conclusion to their rivalry but I wish it was executed better. Watching Melmetal spin around on repeat with Ash not knowing any other command. That's not how a championship battle should look like. At all.
 
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Could you please clarify what you are trying to say here?
To put it simple, after more than 20 years following the franchise, seeing Ash lose, Oak his Pokémon, go on another badge quest (while losing to at least one early leader), get some pals, catch at least one starter and one Flying Pokémon, go to wherever the conference is, lose again, rinse and repeat, got extremely tiring for me. Specially when the recent loses have been ludicrous (Tobias and Cameron) or just a massive and trollish bait-and-switch (Alain) made it pretty hard for me to care about his adventure anymore. To see how cynical I was, I actually thought they would do a repeat of Sean's ending from Street Fighter III (where all was a dream and he got knocked out in the first round of the tournament).

Seeing him lose again specially there where he was one of the most experienced battles would make it feel like they are making fun of the fans that have waited so long for him to actually win a League.
 
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Seeing him lose again specially there where he was one of the most experienced battles would make it feel like they are making fun of the fans that have waited so long for him to actually win a League.
Oh I see I get it. Well, he was one of the best there no doubt. I just don't know if he was the best. He had a mythical too tho it didn't exactly help him win. I feel like it is a problem that stemmed from how the season as a whole had developed.

Anyway I just realised there's actually a thread dedicated to Alolan league. :confused: Could a mod please help move the posts there?
 
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Here's some changes I would make to the Alola league. First of all, getting rid of redundant matches like Faba and Samson Oak and bringing in Kahili and Molayne.

I feel like Kiawe should have won, he was the only one who was consistent about training throughout the years and they mentioned his grandfather being Island King on so many occasions. Having a fight between Kiawe and Ash would be really interesting since they did have some kind of rivalry throughout.
Late to the party, but Gladion was even more dedicated than Kiawe in training, and Kiawe would probably always lose to him in the scenario without some serious deux ex machina (as he did in their battle during the league anyway). Even Ash eclipsed Kiawe in training on a lot of opportunities by training Lycanroc and Torracat.

Even if Ash didn’t train as much as he usually does, the majority of the league bar Gladion and Kiawe (And some others) were pretty much novices to Pokemon battling. Ash just happened to be he best of them since they were much less dedicated than him. Ash was poised to win the moment they set the Masked Royal battle as a prize, since they gave each Pokémon in Ash's team (bar Melmetal) a focused battle:
Pikachu: Guzma
Rowlet: Hau
Lycanroc: Gladion
Torracat: Kukui, which was explicitly a battle only the winner would be allowed to have.

Ash deserved winning the league, and if he didn’t, Gladion was the second most deserving candidate.
 
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Here's some changes I would make to the Alola league. First of all, getting rid of redundant matches like Faba and Samson Oak and bringing in Kahili and Molayne.
Faba's inclusion was understandable, he was a big fan of Masked Royal and his Hypno and Alakazam were quite strong. I agree about Samson Oak though.
Sophocles fighting his cousin in an emotional battle was one of the match ups I really wanted and expected to see, I think it was indeed one of the biggest missed opportunities in SM. Kahili would've been great to see in Top 16 aswell, same with Ryuki that didn't even participate for some reason. I'd like them to replace Samson and TRio, they were waste of space in the Alola League.
 
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During Ash's Verdant Cavern trial, his Rowlet is shown to be able to move silently, an ability that is demonstrated yet again in the grand trial match with Hala. This could be a reference to how silent owls can be, or even foreshadowing the evolution that never happened when Rowlet was found to be too marketable as it is. Either way, I don't think this silent movement thing was ever brought up again after this, which is just disappointing.
 
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Not really. The first round was a Battle Royale. Ash's friends stuck together and helped each other out. Them making it was reasonable.
I think that was kind of the problem though. In a regular League, most of Ash's friends wouldn't have been able to advance through the preliminary round simply because they weren't experienced battlers. Lillie, Mallow, Sophocles and arguably Lana due to Sandy having little battle experience, shouldn't have been able to advanced to the Top 16 and beyond if they had to rely on helping each other to advance. That's why a lot of people thought that the first round was unsatisfying if they didn't advance entirely on their own merits. Plus, a lot of fans didn't like the Battle Royale format in general.

SerenaToAlola said:
Once again, you're going by the assumption that nothing else about the series has changed whereas I am writing with regards to alternative developments that could have happened.
Well I don't think you made it clear what would change aside from Molayne entering in the League and giving Sophocles his Pokemon, so you can't blame me for going with that assumption. If you do have to change so much about Molayne and to a lesser degree Sophocles' training to enter the League, then I'm not sure if it would be worthwhile.

SerenaToAlola said:
I don't know what else to say aside from the fact that they are. I don't see how they can be interpreted as anything but rivals. You can be friends with your rivals.
I'm not saying that you can't be friends with your rivals. I am saying that Ash and Kiawe's rivalry was nonexistent past the first few episodes of the series. They honestly felt much more like sparring partners rather than rivals to me. There was a lot more focus on the two of them training with each other and polishing their moves together rather than simply Ash or Kiawe wanting to defeat each other. They still wanted to win in their battles of course, but that never really felt like the main aspect of their relationship or their goal throughout the series.

SerenaToAlola said:
True. Ash vs Gladion was a nice conclusion to their rivalry but I wish it was executed better. Watching Melmetal spin around on repeat with Ash not knowing any other command. That's not how a championship battle should look like. At all.
I can understand that. To give Ash some benefit of the doubt, Melmetal had just evolved and he wasn't too familiar with its moves as a result, but I did feel like they were trying to rely on Melmetal's brute force over anything else when it was battling. It also doesn't help that it didn't get many battles as a Meltan and it easily had the weakest connection to Ash out of his SM team. It was caught mainly because of how much Rowlet had bonded with it and I didn't think it developed a particularly close connection with Ash afterwards. Rowlet is still the most frustrating Pokemon out of his SM team for me, but Melmetal isn't too far behind in that regard. It suffered from being a late series capture and Ash not having a full team at the time made it more frustrating too. A part of me kind of wishes that he did have a full team on him by the time the Alola League started, but I also thought that having Nagandel come back was pretty neat. It was basically given the Goodra treatment, but evolving off-screen is far less annoying than rushing through the evolution like they did with Goodra and Nagandel actually did more than have draws for its battles too.

Both Pikachu and especially Lycanroc performed better during the battle due to how much more experience they had, so I thought that it was still a pretty satisfying battle for their rivalry all things considered.
 
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I still don't understand the reason some Gym Leaders in Kanto were treated as COTDs, or the reason Satoshi earned the two of his badges (Rainbow and Gold Badges). Come on, how making a Pokemon laugh grants you the victory? And for what reason Erika thought that Satoshi deserved the badge by running into a fire and saving a Kusaihana? This last one's a pretty popular opinion though.
I mean it was early OS so the writers clearly didn't know how to handle the series since it was new. As for Ash saving Gloom, I don't see why that action earning him a badge is so controversial? If someone saved my beloved pet from a fire you can bet that I would be eternally grateful to them, so Erika handing Ash the badge because of his heroics seemed justified imo.
 
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As for Ash saving Gloom, I don't see why that action earning him a badge is so controversial? If someone saved my beloved pet from a fire you can bet that I would be eternally grateful to them, so Erika handing Ash the badge because of his heroics seemed justified imo.
Those Badges are supposed to be used as proofs of battle strength in order to qualify for a massive regional battle tournament. Handing them out like souvenirs just out of gratefulness is not what a Gym Leader is supposed to do with them. So no. I personally don't think it was justified. They should've just had a rematch.
 
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Those Badges are supposed to be used as proofs of battle strength in order to qualify for a massive regional battle tournament. Handing them out like souvenirs just out of gratefulness is not what a Gym Leader is supposed to do with them. So no. I personally don't think it was justified. They should've just had a rematch.
I just think it's strange how people overreact to Erika handing Ash the Rainbow badge out of gratitude for him saving her Pokemon, yet I don't remember nearly as much outrage when we found out that Volkner was literally handing Beacon badges for free in the first Sunyshore episode. I just went through the episode review thread of that episode and only a few people seemed bothered by that compared to how many old school fans drag Erika for what she did even to this day.

I felt that Brock just giving Ash the Boulder badge was more controversial than what Erika did since Ash used the sprinkler system to weaken Brock's Onix, which could technically be considered as cheating since the sprinklers weren't supposed to be part of the gym battle (not to mention that Ash forfeited the battle anyways).
 
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Ash should've gotten that bratty Hoothoot from early Johto and evolved it into Noctowl. I just like it when Ash catches Pokemon in their base stages and trains them until they evolve. Also I never really liked that Ash's Noctowl was a shiny so I would've rather see it with its usual colours.
 
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As cool as the concept of a Sky Battler sounded, I think it would have been difficult for that to be Serena's main goal. I think it would have been harder to incorporate different areas that made Sky Battles possible compared to just having different places for Showcases. It also wouldn't have allowed for Serena to use Serena and limiting her to just Flying type Pokemon might have been kind of dull. I still really hate Showcases as a goal, but I don't think that a Sky Battler would have been a better fit for Serena, especially when she was never particularly interested in battling to begin with.
 
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