• The Anime and Manga staff has posted a PSA regarding Go and how we'll handle future cases involving him from now onwards.

    We strongly recommend checking out this thread.

    Thank you in advance.

Rank main characters in Pokemon anime (OS-SM)

Which character(s) are you typically most interested in/invested in during a Pokemon series?

  • Ash

    Votes: 17 43.6%
  • Female companion(s)

    Votes: 20 51.3%
  • Male companion(s)

    Votes: 3 7.7%
  • Team Rocket

    Votes: 12 30.8%

  • Total voters
more afraid of you
Mar 11, 2015
Reaction score
Since SM is essentially over and it is seemingly likely (or at least possible - don't discuss that here) that the original continuity is over, I thought this would be a good time to have another thread like this. The main difference is, typically when we make these types of threads we rank companions, but in this case, I wanted us to rank all human main characters we have seen (including Ash). I know lots of people have a different idea of who is a main character, and we don't need to argue that here, just rank whomever you feel qualifies. As for me, this will include Ash, companions/classmates, and TR.

The reason I wanted to do this is because I find myself very upset that we could be losing all the history of all of the characters I loved so much and any chance of them returning, while only retaining a character I really am not very fond of. I am under the impression that the vast majority of people here like Ash more than me, but I feel like we rarely rank him among other characters, so I am really curious to see where other people have him ranked.

As far as Ash, people differ in their opinion of how differently he acts during each series, so feel free to split him out into different series in your rank as well (eg. AG Ash, DP Ash, etc) - but lets not argue about that here, just do what you personally feel makes sense. As for me, I feel he is slightly different between most series, but for the most part that wouldn't really change my rank, so I am going to split Ash out as OS-XY Ash (rather than having 5 Ash in a row) and SM Ash (who I personally feel is different enough from the others to change my ranking greatly).

I am including a poll to try to get a general idea, but the poll obviously isn't perfect, as many will probably feel differently depending on the generation, so I am allowing multiple answers.

My List:
  1. May
  2. Dawn
  3. Bonnie
  4. Clemont
  5. Iris
  6. Brock
  7. Serena
  8. Cilan
  9. Tracey
  10. James
  11. Misty
  12. Lillie
  13. Ash (OS-XY)
  14. Max
  15. Jessie
  16. Lana
  17. Mallow
  18. Kiawe
  19. Sophocles
  20. SM Ash

Notes on my rankings: For me the first three are hugely ahead, I like May a lot more than Dawn, I like Dawn a lot more than Bonnie, I like Bonnie a lot more than anyone else. After that 4-8 were more difficult, and could probably be in slightly different orders, as I really like all of those characters greatly. After that we have a group that I like, but don't love as much for one reason or another, then more the neutral, down to the ones I don't really like (which aren't all that many). I was actually surprised I moved SM Ash down below Sophocles, but Sophocles has improved slightly, while SM Ash has become increasingly obnoxious imo. I know obnoxious is "in" in 2019, but to me it is my least favorite quality a person can have. Also, I don't need anyone to respond to tell me I don't like SM characters, I am fully aware of that, and I am also fully aware of which of you don't approve of that.
Sep 28, 2019
Reaction score
1. Hikari/Dawn

Good co-star who gets the same amount of development as Satoshi.

2. Serena

Good emotional development but is lacking in other aspects such as battling. I like the romantic subplot but I also wish it would have been less open ended and that the kiss would have been consensual.

3. Haruka/May

Decent in both emotional development and battling.

4. Lillie

Her character brings up some mature topics but she is inferior to her game and manga counterparts. Needs more Pokémon and a goal.

5. Musashi/Jessie

The most flawed and layered character in the anime. She has a great backstory and is actually quite tragic. The problem is that she overstayed her welcome since forever ago.

6. DP Satoshi

He had an interesting rival and I like how goal-oriented he is. The subplot with Chimchar was great and was built up over time.

7. XY Satoshi

The most mature version of Satoshi. I like how we got to see his vulnerable side in the Winding Woods episode since the emotional moments are usually reserved to the female companions.

8. AG Satoshi

OK in terms of battling and feels consistent. A little hot-headed though but it doesn't feel unnatural either since he hasn't fully matured yet but is less childish than OS Satoshi.

9. OS Satoshi

Great in terms of humor but his victories feel undeserved. They also constantly bring up the fact that he didn't earn his badges which is weird because it takes a long time for him to change for the better. Why was pity badges even a thing?

10. Takeshi/Brock

Has an interesting backstory and is a good friend to Satoshi. Overstayed his welcome, had an annoying gag and sat on the bench and stated the obvious a lot.

11. Kasumi/Misty

A flawed character and has some cute moments but feels underdeveloped compared to most of the other female characters. The Whirl Cup happened too late and wasn't built up ahead of time. Great in terms of humor though.

12. Iris

Annoying personality and gags but battled more than Kasumi. Chemistry with Satoshi and Dent is lacking. Needs more dragons and evolutions. Her rival is kind of lame and needs a better motivation to challenge her.

13. Mallow/Mao

Boring goal and personality but has a sad backstory and cute character design. Often feels like a background character.

14. Clemont/Citron

OK development but felt static after the gym battle. Annoying gag but at least it is not offensive. Clembot's death would have been emotional if he didn't come back in the next episode.

15. Bonnie/Eureka

Better than Masato and has OK development. Annoying gag. Cute relationship with Puni-chan.

16. Kiawe/Kaki

OK but he is not super interesting. He would have been better as a rival. Shared the spotlight with a lot of other characters which made him underdeveloped.

17. Koujiro/James

Has some cute moments and great in terms of humor but only in OS. Desperately needs some kind of goal and feels even more static than Musashi and Satoshi.

18. Kenji/Tracy

Nice, bland but not offensive in any way just like he was intended to be. They should have kept him in Johto and developed him instead of reintroducing Takeshi who was already a static character.

19. Masato/Max

Annoying and a little bit of a drama queen.

20. Sophocles/Mamane

Kind of flat and feels a little too childish. The contrast between him and Mallow is really jarring when it comes to maturity. How are these two the same age?

21. Lana/Suiren

Lamest goal. Eevee is underused and feels like promotion for Let's Go. Popplio's sad backstory with Team Skull feels weird especially since Guzma kicked her butt.

22. BW Satoshi

Second worst version of Satoshi. Needs to pull himself together which he eventually did in XY.

23. SM Satoshi

The most inconsistent version of Satoshi. He didn't seem to care about battling as much as in XY but still wins the league somehow.
Last edited:
Cute bunny baby
Mar 20, 2013
Reaction score
  1. Bonnie
  2. May
  3. Serena
  4. Clemont
  5. Lana
  6. Sophocles
  7. Lillie
  8. Max
  9. Ash
  10. Kiawe
  11. Misty
  12. Brock
  13. Tracey
  14. Cilan
  15. Mallow
  16. Dawn
  17. Iris
Aug 19, 2019
Reaction score
Team Rocket are at the bottom of the list for me
People complain so much about Ash’s female companions, but we have to put up with these three buffoons all seasons lol. I wish they would leave & never return lol.

Anyway, my list is;

  1. Brock
  2. Ash
  3. Kiawe
  4. Dawn
  5. Misty
  6. Iris
  7. Cilan
  8. Lillie
  9. Lana
  10. Clemont
  11. May
  12. Mallow
  13. Bonnie
  14. Serena
  15. Sophocles
  16. Max
  17. Tracey
Last edited:
Well-Known Member
Feb 25, 2013
Reaction score
My personal list:

  1. The TRio
  2. SM Ash
  3. OS Ash
  4. Suiren
  5. Misty
  6. Hikari
  7. Eureka
  8. Kaki
  9. Brock
  10. Mao
  11. Citron
  12. Lillie
  13. Mamane
  14. Max
  15. May
  16. Iris
  17. Serena
  18. AG - XY Ash
  19. Tracey
  20. Dento

(I'm well aware the names are all mixed up between Japanese and English, sorry!)
Well-Known Member
May 13, 2014
Reaction score
Goddess: Misty.
Great: OS-DP Ash, May, Max, Clemont, Mallow, Sophocles.
Good: Brock, Dawn, Cilan, Serena, XY Ash, Lillie, Kiawe.
Not bad but could've been better: Iris, Bonnie, BW & SM Ash.
Meh: Lana.
Aug 30, 2019
Reaction score
May = Lillie > OS Ash > Kiawe > SM Ash > Dawn > Serena = Mallow > OS Brock > Lana > AG Ash = Misty > AG Brock > Clemont > Sophocles > Tracey > DP Ash >>> Iris > DP Brock = Max > BW Ash >>> Cilan >>>>> Bonnie >>>>>>>> XY Ash
Active Member
Sep 9, 2016
Reaction score
Misty: becomes somewhat more likeable when Togepi arrives

Brock: funny sometimes but a little bit boring, although his obsession with nurse Joy/ officer Jenny is slightly creepy when you think about it.

May: a loveable goofball.

Max: not adorable like Bonnie but funnier than Brock at least.

Dawn: another loveable goofball with slightly more sass.

Iris: her sibling rivalry thing with Ash might have worked better in a different generation's anime. Especially Gen 6.

Clemont: precious boy who must be defended from all danger.

Bonnie: precious boy's even more endearing little sister who seems obsessed with finding a girlfriend for Clemont who doesn't want one lol.

Serena: she's literally just stalking a Japanese boy across France and somehow deluding herself into thinking he loves her.

SUMO traveling companions: hard to really say anything about them. They are more boring than Brock. Kiawe is funny I guess but that's about it.

Goh: l love hin

Chloe: crappy first impression, I do feel so can relate to her though