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Pokemon Evolution in the Anime: Do you think it's Necessary?

Rainbow-Rain

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So what are your views?

Should a Pokemon need to evolve to be stronger?

Does it depend on the Pokemon in question?

Does it depend on the situation?

Things like Dawn's Piplup, Ash's Bulbasaur and Ash's Rowlet were strong without needing to evolve once

Ash's Torterra got worse upon evolution, and Noivern and Goodra don't have great battle records either

Looking at the current series where all of Ash's current Team are fully evolved, do you think any of these guys would fair in the PWC if they were in their previous stages?

And then there's also some of Goh's Pokemon who have evolved, most likely to help with Project Mew (and to fill his Pokedex?)

Would Project Mew have been achieved even with pre-evos like Scorbunny and Sobble for instance?

Past series have had Pre-evos show strength by overcoming their Evolved Forms but in Journeys it seems like Evolution is the defining way to become better?


What do you guys think?
 

PikachuSmasher

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I think it depends on the Pokemon, situation and trainer. If a Pokemon is under Ash’s ownership, then chances are it’s going to evolve. Sure we had Pokemon like Rowlet and Buizel that never evolved, but that’s only a minority among Ash’s Pokemon. Ash has evolved most of his Pokemon to it’s mid or final stage. Goh on the other hand is a loose cannon. Since he wants to catch every Pokemon, he’ll just chuck some poke balls. Goh hasn’t evolved most of his Pokemon and just catches their evolved form as we have seen with Rattata, Pidgey, the Weedle line, the Caterpie line, the Paras line, you get my point here. Situation wise, Ash’s Pokemon evolve in battle, against Team Rocket or with an item in Gliscor’s case. Most times, they’re saving Ash, so it seems fitting. Goh however as I said rarely evolves Pokemon. He evolved Scorbunny in a battle with TR and evolved Raboot against Olena. His Sobble evolved randomly and his Drizzle evolved against Kecleon. The other 3 evolutions Goh has had were evolving his Pikachu into Raichu, his Execgute into Exegutor and his Scyther into Scizor. Those were his only evolutions, Pokemon that need stones and his Galar starters. I personally think any Pokemon can be strong without evolving, but as I said, it depends on the situation and trainer
 

Rainbow-Rain

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I've also noticed that alot of Pokemon tend to evolve if their Base Forms are somewhat "lacking" in Arms and Legs department

Take Mallow's Bounsweet for instance.

Serena's Fenniken and Goh's Sobble to a lesser extent

If a Pokemon starts out 4 Legged (or no legged) it usually evolves (especially if it has a Bipedal Evolution)

The only exception so far has been Bulbasaur and that was back in the OS.

Likewise if a Pokemon already starts out Biped in it's base stage it seems to have a slightly lower chance of evolution

Squirtle, Totodile, Piplup, Oshawott, Snivy,
Pancham, Chespin, Rowlet, Bunnlby, all come to mind (but it's not always the case as shown by Charmander, Treecko, Torchic, and Scorbunny)

Do they do this for animation purposes? :unsure: It does seem generally easier to animate something on 2 legs as apposed to a 4 legged creature
 
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Silktree

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The only exception so far has been Bulbasaur and that was back in the OS.
And Chikorita. But I'd think that Lycanroc wouldn't have received a special quadruple form if you were right, and that OLM would be less attached to Eevee.
 

Ghost Diplocaulus

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I think wether a Pokemon evolves or not depends on several different factors:
Character Development. Some Pokemon evolve either as a culmination of a character arc (Pignite, Incineroar) or as a leadup to the climax of it (Charizard's disobedience, Bayleef's fondness of Ash, Infernape's issues with Paul).
Animation Constraints. Some Pokemon have evolved forms that are easier to animate than their pre-evolutions. Goodra is a notable example: sure, it may have been overall unimpressive, but it evolved extremely quickly to the point that it literally has no feats as a Goomy or Sliggoo besides beating Team Rocket, and that's most likely because animating something with the anatomy of a slug is trickier when compared to animating something that at least has legs. By contrast, some Pokemon are harder to animate in their evolved forms due to either their anatomies or more complex designs, so they usually don't.
Time Constraints. It's kinda difficult to evolve literally every single member of an MC's in a reasonably believable amount of time; notice how Kalos, which is the only region where all of Ash's Pokemon evolved fully still needed to take shortcuts by having one of Ash's captures be single-stage (Hawlucha) and two others being incredibly rushed (Noivern and Goodra). So in the end most series deal with that by simply leaving some mons unevolved.
Marketability. Probably the most obvious one: some Pokemon (such as Lucario, Inteleon, and Cinderace) evolved because their final stages are the most popular of their line or because their unevolved stages aren't popular enough to justify keeping around, while others stayed in their base forms because those are the most popular stages of their line (Pikachu, Bulbasaur, Piplup, and Rowlet are probably the most notorious examples)
 

game3524

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Yeah, it usually comes down to marketability and animation constraints. Ash’s Lucario is a good example of the former, while Misty ditching Starmie is a good example of the latter. Staryu was easier to animate and functionally filled the same niche.
 

PkmnTrainerV

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The only exception so far has been Bulbasaur and that was back in the OS.
I’m guessing that happened because, no offence to Ivysaur and Venusaur fans (I actually wanted Bulbasaur to evolve into Ivysaur myself), they mostly look the same as Bulbasaur, but lose a lot of their mobility. So I think the writers decided to keep it as it is for the sake of mobility and being able to be in more situations without size or bulk being a limiting factor.
 

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I always wondered why Corphish and Buizel didn't evolve despite not being the usual marketable Pokémon. They were both in tons of battles and Buizel in particular always wanted to get stronger and gave me Treecko vibes. I guess the writers wanted to leave one pokemon not evolved
 

Rainbow-Rain

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I always wondered why Corphish and Buizel didn't evolve despite not being the usual marketable Pokémon. They were both in tons of battles and Buizel in particular always wanted to get stronger and gave me Treecko vibes. I guess the writers wanted to leave one pokemon not evolved
I wonder the same about Dawn's Buneary.

Lopunny is still cute and marketable and Piplup was already staying unevolved so there was no reason to keep Buneary as is?

A tiny part of me can't help but wonder if Lopunny's "reputation" on the internet had something to do with it (as crazy as that sounds) :unsure:
 

Ghost Diplocaulus

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Corphish probably didn't evolve because its evolved form is part Dark, and I feel like back then the writers were kinda opposed to giving the main hero a Pokemon of the "evil" type. Heck, even when Ash actually did get Dark-type Pokemon notice how the Dark aspect of them is always heavily downplayed: Scraggy was treated as a pure Fighting-type via its moveset and even being affected by Psychic-type attacks, Krookodile forgot Crunch in favor of Aerial Ace, Greninja never used any Dark-type moves at all, and Incineroar never even participated in a battle after it evolved.

Buizel I think was because it was seen as a good enough blend of cute and cool that it was unnecessary to evolve him (that, or Floatzel's flotation sack may have gotten in the way of Counter Shield due to it enveloping the Pokemon's back rather than just the neck). I admittedly don't mind, because I love Buizel.

Dawn's Buneary I'm like 99% sure was because of her crush on Pikachu and nothing else. Because God forbid tall girls date smol guys I guess :p
 

game3524

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Corphish was also comic relief, so that probably played a role in it not evolving as well. Ghost is probably right about Buziel. It had the right balance of being cute and cool, so evolution wasn’t necessary. Squirtle is like that as well to a lesser degree.
 

Kurolegacy

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They’re not necessary but I certainly enjoy them so long as the Pokémon has actually developed to warrant evolving. None of what they did with the Sobble line.
 

Sai

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Corphish was also comic relief, so that probably played a role in it not evolving as well. Ghost is probably right about Buziel. It had the right balance of being cute and cool, so evolution wasn’t necessary. Squirtle is like that as well to a lesser degree.
I'm pretty sure Crawdaunt could have pulled off the same comic relief as Corphish.

They’re not necessary but I certainly enjoy them so long as the Pokémon has actually developed to warrant evolving. None of what they did with the Sobble line.
It's not really much different than May's Torchic that evolved with barely any battles and doing nothing for 80 episodes. Same could be said for most of Brock's pokemon that evolved doing nothing like Zubat and Lotad or whatever
 

Kurolegacy

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It's not really much different than May's Torchic that evolved with barely any battles and doing nothing for 80 episodes. Same could be said for most of Brock's pokemon that evolved doing nothing like Zubat and Lotad or whatever
Torchic didn’t do a lot in its first form but it at least did something. And it’s character did go through change from the time it started and the time it evolved. And once it did evolve, it became one of May’s most dependable Pokémon. It didn’t just act as a shoulder warmer for most of its existence and then attack a berry and suddenly evolve, get shoved completely out of the show doing nothing and then come back and evolve. Hell, even for the little that Zubat or Lotad did, they still did a world more than the Sobble line ever did. Those aren’t even remotely comparable.
 

R1ke

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Generally speaking I'd like as many pokemon to evolve as reasonably possible. It tends to lead to more development and a sense of progression for Ash's team. This is obviously really present with Ash's ace mons. That being said, it's not the be-all-end-all. There's still plenty of fleshed out and memorable unevolved mons (Pikachu, Bulbasaur, Squirtle, Buizel, Hawlucha, Rowlet, etc). Also some underwhelming evolutions like Torterra and Goodra (it was ok but painfully quick imo).

And of course, you can have underdeveloped fully evolved pokemon. Like Dragonite and Gengar rn. It's more about what you do with the pokemon and what they're trying to achieve. Is it to learn a certain move, defeat x opponent or just be a reliable team member? Evolution just helps facilitate that most of the time. Stronger pokemon can fight stronger opponents (hence have more opportunities), but once again some unevolved pokemon have done that too.
 

Rainbow-Rain

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Torchic didn’t do a lot in its first form but it at least did something. And it’s character did go through change from the time it started and the time it evolved. And once it did evolve, it became one of May’s most dependable Pokémon. It didn’t just act as a shoulder warmer for most of its existence and then attack a berry and suddenly evolve, get shoved completely out of the show doing nothing and then come back and evolve. Hell, even for the little that Zubat or Lotad did, they still did a world more than the Sobble line ever did. Those aren’t even remotely comparable.
Remember Mallow's Bounsweet and Ash's Dragonite?
 

Sai

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Mallow and Lana's starters went through quick evolutions with barely any battles at that point too, I forgot about that. I also think Misty's Poliwag evolved after literally one real battle too in early Johto. Clearly battle experience is not always a thing in the anime
 

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Evolutions are cool, but not when they're done in spite of Pokémon. Recently evolutions have only been done so the writers don't have to do training or development episodes anymore. Once a Pokémon evolves, it won't appear unless it fights and it will probably lose the fight so a more popular Pokémon can get the win.
Sirfetch'd has had the worst treatment of any of Ash's Pokémon since Kalos.
 
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