• Please check out our recent thread on handling different opinions and toxic behavior here.
  • All members are allowed to express their opinions, no matter how unpopular, so long as they respect others and do not claim their opinion is the only valid opinion. While we understand that there is debate regarding Goh, someone posting an opinion you disagree with does not give you the right to attack them or report the content for trolling/baiting. This notice will serve as a 0-point warning and as such, Anime & Manga staff reserve the right to jump immediately to point warnings. For more information regarding our stance on arguments and debates, see this PSA.
  • If you are finding yourself unable to log in, you should be able to fix the issue by following the following process.
    1. Close all browser tabs with any part of Bulbagarden open.
    2. Delete all Bulbagarden.net cookies (and if possible, any cached site data for Bulbagarden) from your browser.
    3. Close and reopen your browser, open a new tab, and log into the forums on the new tab.
    If you've followed this process and are still having issues, please contact us via the "Contact us" link at the bottom of the forum.
  • Announcing the National Bulbagraphic photography contest, open to entries from New Pokémon Snap and Sword and Shield, with prizes for the winners! A thread with all the details on how to enter can be found here.

What if certain Travelling Companions never left?

Member
Joined
Mar 26, 2011
Messages
323
Reaction score
109
Hypothetically speaking, what if certain friends of Ash's did not leave when they did in the anime and were actually with him during certain sagas?

For example; What if Misty didn't have to return to Cerulean and had stayed with Ash when he challenged the Hoenn League and the Battle Frontier? What if May and Max had stayed with Ash when he to Sinnoh? What if Dawn was his female companion in Unova and not Iris? What else would have been different in those sagas?

And before any tries to pull the "then we would have (insert character's name here)" card, please remember that is a hypothetical question. So, please, bear with me on this one instead of just immediately try to shoot it down right from the beginning.

On a similar note; what if Team Rocket's days of tailing Ash ended after Johto? What if the main villainous teams of the following regions where the only villains that Ash and co. had to deal with? For example; what if the "turf war" between Teams Aqua and Magma was the only antagonistic problem Ash and his friends were dealing with in Hoenn?
 
Super Moderator
Joined
Jun 17, 2006
Messages
12,178
Reaction score
13,206
Either the show would have gotten really stale if characters lasted that long, especially given how a lot of people were bored with Brock by DP, or the cast would be much too big if everyone just kept traveling with Ash without heading out on their own.
 
So many things I gotta do on here.
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Messages
27
Reaction score
36
I like brock in the DP tho, But I do like a new companion every now and then. Even tho I do miss may, not max tho. And at times I miss some of ash's old Pokemon like bayleaf I loved her, Heracross and a few others from other companions.
 
Destroyer of Fairy, Steel and Ice types.
Joined
Feb 21, 2011
Messages
5,199
Reaction score
2,245
I think that companion should last for one region only. New companions each regional is refreshing for me and maybe others who want new companions. Johto and Kanto Battle Frontier were the exceptions. Brock probably came back in sinnoh because they couldn't find a male companion or decided to not have Lucas as the male companion. Johto was connected with Kanto so it was fine when Misty and Brock sticked with Ash. Orange Islands was part of the Kanto saga so Misty being with Ash was still good. The Battle Frontier in Kanto was the Hoenn battle Frontier which is why May and Max stuck around. Not sure why Brock came back in Hoenn but I am sure that there was a reason. Perhaps Ash still needed Brock's guidance for Hoenn?
 
Last edited:
So many things I gotta do on here.
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Messages
27
Reaction score
36
Yeah I think we are both the same on this, It's refreshing to see a new person and new things for them and ash on the journey. But I do wish to see more of bayleaf lol.
 
Prepare for over-used stock animation!
Joined
Jan 29, 2011
Messages
1,168
Reaction score
2,737
If Team Rocket left at the end of Johto I can almost guarantee that there would be carbon copy replacements of them from all of the other villainous teams. The writers rely on having an episode-to-episode group of antagonists that try to steal the group Pokemon in order to add conflict to the episodes. Episode running three minutes short? Have Team Rocket show up, recite the motto, be shot down by one of Ash's Pokemon, briefly battle, blast off, and boom those 3 minutes are filled. Of course this isn't every episode or even a bad thing really (honestly most episodes where this happens have pretty standard/subpar plots and are improved by a Team Rocket appearance) but it definitely is a thing. It's like how if Ash was replaced we'd have a really similar character filling in his shoes. This entire show is extremely formulaic and goes through the motions constantly, characters like Jessie, James, and Meowth are a big part of it.

In fact if they had left we wouldn't have villainous teams clashing (which I've always found to be the more interesting parts of each series) or these rich character backstories we have with the TRio, and would have to spend time at the beginning of each new series setting up contrived ways to get new antagonists to chase down Ash and friends each episode.
 
So many things I gotta do on here.
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Messages
27
Reaction score
36
If Team Rocket left at the end of Johto I can almost guarantee that there would be carbon copy replacements of them from all of the other villainous teams. The writers rely on having an episode-to-episode group of antagonists that try to steal the group Pokemon in order to add conflict to the episodes. Episode running three minutes short? Have Team Rocket show up, recite the motto, be shot down by one of Ash's Pokemon, briefly battle, blast off, and boom those 3 minutes are filled. Of course this isn't every episode or even a bad thing really (honestly most episodes where this happens have pretty standard/subpar plots and are improved by a Team Rocket appearance) but it definitely is a thing. It's like how if Ash was replaced we'd have a really similar character filling in his shoes. This entire show is extremely formulaic and goes through the motions constantly, characters like Jessie, James, and Meowth are a big part of it.

In fact if they had left we wouldn't have villainous teams clashing (which I've always found to be the more interesting parts of each series) or these rich character backstories we have with the TRio, and would have to spend time at the beginning of each new series setting up contrived ways to get new antagonists to chase down Ash and friends each episode.

On the matter of team rocket I love them, There a bit of comedy relief it always makes my day when they pop in and do what they do. I do understand that a lot of people don't like them but I love the comedy factor from them.
 
Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2013
Messages
164
Reaction score
52
I actually liked Takeshi a lot more in DP than his Original Series self. I thought he played the "big brother" role well at some of the episodes there. Something that would never work in XY since Satoshi is portrayed experienced and inspirational now.

And I never understood the hate for Masato. I mean, he acted just like a kid who thinks he's more mature than he really is would act if you ask me. Which is the opposite to Eureka who is a kid who acts like a kid. I like them both.

If Kenji stayed past the Orange Islands arc I would have dropped the anime for good.
Speaking of him I wish they would make a running gag of Kenji appearing and being cut whenever he's about to speak. I know it wasn't their intention but back in that Best Wishes episode where the professor calls him and the black out just ruins his chance to show up I thought it was so amusing.
 
So many things I gotta do on here.
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Messages
27
Reaction score
36
I actually liked Takeshi a lot more in DP than his Original Series self. I thought he played the "big brother" role well at some of the episodes there. Something that would never work in XY since Satoshi is portrayed experienced and inspirational now.

And I never understood the hate for Masato. I mean, he acted just like a kid who thinks he's more mature than he really is would act if you ask me. Which is the opposite to Eureka who is a kid who acts like a kid. I like them both.

If Kenji stayed past the Orange Islands arc I would have dropped the anime for good.
Speaking of him I wish they would make a running gag of Kenji appearing and being cut whenever he's about to speak. I know it wasn't their intention but back in that Best Wishes episode where the professor calls him and the black out just ruins his chance to show up I thought it was so amusing.

ooh it took me a while to understand that lol, I don't know most of the Japanese names I only know a few of them to be honest.
 
Super Moderator
Joined
Jun 17, 2006
Messages
12,178
Reaction score
13,206
I actually liked Brock sticking around through DP as well. He had some really good moments and I thought that he worked well with the DP group as a whole too. I just know a lot of people were tired of him by that point and if other characters stuck around longer too, then they'd probably receive similar reactions from fans.
 
Unregistered User
Joined
Aug 25, 2013
Messages
2,017
Reaction score
584
Misty wouldn't have added anything to Hoenn. If anything, she would've detracted from it unless she took up contests.
 
Joined
Aug 14, 2008
Messages
9,426
Reaction score
9,256
Preferred Pronouns
She/her
I just know a lot of people were tired of him by that point and if other characters stuck around longer too, then they'd probably receive similar reactions from fans.
Whilst on one hand you are right, I do think the reason fans felt that way was because the precedent had been set with Kasumi and then Haruka/Masato. If Kasumi and Takeshi had stuck around until the end of time then I suspect Kenji's appearance/disappearance would have been considered an anomaly and people would not have had the expectation for either character to leave.

All I can say is that if Kasumi had never left, I'd never have had a reason to rabidly come back into the Pokemon fold to demand her reinstation so I'd never have known the fate of the Pokemon anime anyway... It was a poisoned chalice :-(
 
Prepare for over-used stock animation!
Joined
Jan 29, 2011
Messages
1,168
Reaction score
2,737
My main gripe with Brock staying through DP was that other characters came and went but he stayed constant. As I said earlier there's no reason to replace Ash or Team Rocket because they're critical to how the show works, but as seen in BW and XY Brock isn't. Plus other than a handful of episodes and his stupid flirting-with-every-girl-he-sees gag-- which imo got old like 3 episodes after he came back for Johto-- he was just kind of there. He didn't have an ongoing storyline as far as I remember (or he did and it's so forgettable I can't remember it) and we got three fakeout departures for him, by the time Best Wishes started I was relieved.
 
Cute bunny baby
Joined
Mar 20, 2013
Messages
5,381
Reaction score
2,882
I can't think of an extended presence for any character that would befit them in any way. Misty being in Hoenn would likely would have resulted in her just been pushed aside by May with her Contests. May being in Sinnoh would mean she'd probably be competing against Dawn in contests or they'd have to alternate each time they reached a new hall, which would have extended the arc tremendously. Dawn being in Unova would have made her complete useless since there are no Contests in said region. And so on and so forth for the following companions. On a similar note, I honestly felt that Brock continuing into DP was extremely forced. He barely got any meaningful focus throughout the entire saga and having him there just felt pointless imo.

I think characters staying for multiple sagas only makes it easier for them to become stale and boring. New faces and especially personalities are refreshing after watching someone else for over 100 episodes. This is one of the main reasons why I want TR and Ash to be replaced. I'd rather TR have disappeared after Johto and a new trio of members from each villainous team be introduced every saga over watching the same people doing the same thing over and over.
 
pokemon fan 132
Joined
Dec 28, 2008
Messages
2,989
Reaction score
371
As usual I have no other choice but to disagree with majority of opinions stated here. This is becoming trend for such kind of topics.
Because sheer amount of such pessimism and negative thoughts over main characters staying over long period of time;

To such extent that there prevails collective mindset how traveling companions staying for long time in anime means only one outcome; apparently "becoming only worse and worse turning in stale character from who everyone would get sick".

Is unrealistic and unjustified.

Not only I disagree with such viewpoint, but I also have to address several holes in such thinking.
Talking about basing baseless presumptions on lack of any solid evidence.

Because it makes me wander if anyone in here ever watched any other long running anime series beside pokemon. Series like Bleach, Naruto, One Piece, Fairy Tail, Dragon Bal, Inuyasha etc, etc(I could list whole page of examples).

Where barely any, if at all character from main cast got replaced sticking around until very end. And as noticed longer stay of any of characters from this anime opened door toward deeper, more profound character development. Giving viewers chance to follow protagonists they developed affinity for in developing over long period of time gradually growing, more being revealed about their past. Gaining more dimension to their personality and characterization as various issues which haunted them from past obstacles, problems they had to face and overcome left effect on them maturing. Along with seeing them coming closer in accomplishing their dreams and ultimate objective giving out impression to many loyal followers of characters in this anime growing with story taking them somewhere.

Having on going plot which uses past as guidelines through which future is created unfolding out on unknown aspects of main story points and characters becoming more complex and multilayered as time goes on.
With audience not being bored of them hoping to see them replaced, but on contrary feeling like their investment and growing attached to familiar faces only rewarded them in end in seeing those they like continue to grow and be part of meaningful adventure.

Excuse of pokemon not being show with such premise and interchangeable plot doesn't excuse anything. Because it doesn't mean this anime didn't had potential to be better series than it was with acceptance of status quo only encouraging staff present behind production of pokemon to not try to do better job.


Objectively with right amount of effort and creativity there is no reason to believe how any traveling companion in pokemon series if stayed over long period of time would become "boring and useless". Because it could also remain enjoyable, engaging to follow with its purpose and role only being enriched as result of long stay with more complex and exciting, innovative missions to follow.
With pokemon writers proving they have resources and skill to pull of such feat showing improvement over various subjects as time went on.

Just imagine Misty staying for Hoenn and Battle Frontier.

This region was so abundant with water and ocean related themes that character like her and aspiring water master could benefit significantly from longer stay. In breaking new grounds started with Whirl islands and whole lore about connection between Alpha Omega of water pokemon and water pokemon master title. Having Misty enter new water tournaments and tasks to qualify for such strong events. We could see her add more versatility to her team thanks to sheer number of dual water types added in third generation. Have her involved as one of major heroes in whole Team Aqua villain plot and desire to use legendary Kyogre for evil intentions. With someone who devoted its life to protect water species and loves them so much would surely be depressed and enraged wanting to stop them.

While at same time coming to better understand nature of water pokemon and their feelings in attempt of saving Kyogre.

We could see Misty meet various renowned water trainers like Sootopolis gym leader Juan or Wallace teaching her secrets in how to overcome weaknesses of water pokemon becoming better trainer. Etc, etc.

Or just imagine May staying for Sinnoh series as already recognized and respected coordinator dealing with hardships and high expectations to defend her reputation achieved in Hoenn. Just to encounter completely different battle style and rules characteristic for Sinnoh contests. Where more emphasis is put on appeal rounds going through struggles in how to adapt to new environment and not disappoint herself.

See her tying up loose ends with old rivals and meet new ones. Have Dawn introduced as recurring character who would look up to veteran like May becoming mentor like figure to her. Passing on knowledge and everything she learned to her. Witnessing if student would manage to overpass her mentor.

Etc, etc.

There existed so many other alternatives and ways to prevent various characters we grew to love and appreciate fall out of favor and in oblivion watching them renewed and return through new roles and positions.

Instead of this status quo and highly repetitive formula of constantly replacing Ash traveling companions and abandoning older ones. Falling in abyss of oblivion with unfinished stories, unresolved dreams, forgotten friendships and wasted potential to explore them to deeper, more significant degree.
Something which would'0ve been avoided if well established smaller group of main cast was allowed to remain important to pokemon without adding too many new ones into the mix.

In retrospective its really not surprising why older main characters disappear forever in pokemon. With such large number of ex main characters(8, soon 11 and who knows how many by very end) that's only logical outcome not being possible or very hard to keep everyone relevant. In other words you can't have both.

EDIT:
I would also like to address how one case of character not being handled as people expected him/her to be, or even smaller group of characters don't serve as valid measure through which fate of everyone in case of staying over long period of time could be predicted. Therefore using Brock in DP and "how everyone were sick of him" is just hasty generalization ignoring how what would come of character on large part depends on nature of their personality, goal, background and purpose writers decide to create for them in anime(this case pokemon). Because purpose can be extended and enriched with new content for Ash traveling companions thus preventing them becoming obsolete contrary to other people belief.

Not like there exists universal criteria by which we can judge who in pokemon got stale and who didn't either still being largely subjective classification. Because in Brock case not all of fans were sick of him and many still miss him wanting him back revealing they consider Brock to still be valuable character.

Just like its case with Misty, Cilan, May etc.

Misty wouldn't have added anything to Hoenn. If anything, she would've detracted from it unless she took up contests.
In that case people are seriously underestimating unexplored potential of Misty's character. Because Hoenn was so much filled with water based plots and ideal areas to make relevant use of water trainer like Misty that more substantial character development related to her career of becoming water pokemon master or apprentice in training to reach E4 level could easily take place there. In fact only more friendly environment to make something major with character so much associated with water themes like Misty than Hoenn was would be upcoming Alola region based on Hawaii. But its not like we could expect realistically for her to return there.
 
Last edited:
Unregistered User
Joined
Aug 25, 2013
Messages
2,017
Reaction score
584
The only other ones I've watched other than Pokemon are Yugioh and Digimon and they switch cast to great effect. Stuff like Naruto have side character arcs etc, we'd have Ash and co the focus of everything everytime.

Misty would be doing the same thing for 20 years. Fuck that. Newer people allowed contests etc. She could've easily taken Iris' role in BW and it wouldn't have been different. Heck, she would've been better than Iris, tbh.
 
So many things I gotta do on here.
Joined
Jun 5, 2016
Messages
27
Reaction score
36
Yeah I'm the same as @Muur but then again I have only ever seen maybe a season's worth or 2 of digimon and Yu-Gi-Oh, But with pokemon I have watched like 10 seasons concurant this year alone and already own the next 6 on DVD.
 
Super Moderator
Joined
Jun 17, 2006
Messages
12,178
Reaction score
13,206
The change in cast works with Yu-Gi-Oh! and Digimon because they pretty much had to do so in order to keep making new series. With the way Yu-Gi-Oh! DM and Digimon Adventure were structured, they couldn't go the Pokemon route with just keeping the main lead with a few new characters to promote the newest cards/monsters. Both stories were done and in DM's case, they had finished adapting the manga. They couldn't have just made Yugi and Taichi the poster child for their respective anime franchises like they do with Ash and the Pokemon anime. There wasn't a lot more room for them to go with for them for another series. I know that there is the new Yu-Gi-Oh! movie and Adventure Tri, but those are anniversary celebrations that are aimed at the older fans of those series, or at least that's the case with Adventure Tri. I've been trying to avoid spoilers for the new Yu-Gi-Oh! movie, so I don't know how that one turns out. Regardless, they couldn't have jumped right into those stories afterwards. In order to promote new merchandise for their franchises, they had to use new characters.

With Pokemon, its story isn't structure in the same way where they absolutely have to get brand new characters every new series. They've structured it to where it can be just Ash's never ending Pokemon adventures with Pikachu and other friends they make along the way. They could have changed Ash ages ago and it probably would have worked, but it wasn't an absolute necessity.

I've been rewatching DP and while I do think it was for the best for Brock to leave, a part of me does kind of miss him in a way too. I don't know if I'd feel the same way if Misty had stayed and then left, especially when I never cared that much for her and her fanbase glorifying her as the best thing ever would still annoy me whether or not she was still on the cast now. Changing up the cast was honestly one of the best decisions the creative staff has made in my opinion. It allowed to try out new ideas and concept that they couldn't have done with older characters and mix up the status quo. If they weren't going to get rid of Ash, the next best thing is to change his traveling group around so that there is something different with each series. People were tired of Brock by DP and people are still complaining about Ash being the lead. I don't think the cast never changing would be a good idea. Following Ash, Misty and Brock for nearly twenty years would have made the show much more stale and boring in my opinion.
 
Digimon King
Joined
May 31, 2015
Messages
325
Reaction score
283
Even if the anime had put more effort on Misty's goal I don't see how it would be interesting. Water Pokemon are one of the most boring types because mostly are lame fishes unable to move in land and battles on water would get boring quickly.
 
pokemon fan 132
Joined
Dec 28, 2008
Messages
2,989
Reaction score
371
To Muur:

Pokemon just like Naruto could had dedicated side arcs to various different characters, but at same time this current mess of having no continuity. No long lasting character development, no cohesive storyline thanks to soft resets and major past main characters who played crucial role in whole adventure, Ash life and storyline not being abandoned remaining acknowledged and pushing forward their own stories too could been avoided.

Either through rotation, parallel focus on more than one character, reviving their presence through recurring roles. But also through longer stay of Ash companions opening path to use them to full potential. Something other anime I brought up and from looks of it many of you guys and girls gavenpt watched have pulled out very successfully.

In pokemon terms one of examples is Misty for who there exists wide consensus how her character wasn't developed enough, how there existed potential to be done more. Being one of reasons behind people displease behind her treatment but longer stay could had in fact remedied some of that problems and in all honesty its a tad bit naive to think how her role would remain exactly same like it was in OS without anything changing.

I wont go in analysis of what new things on table her character alone could brought for almost 1000 episodes. Since it would take too much time.

But lets just take Hoenn for example working under presumption of what exactly Misty longer stay lasting through AG generation would have changed in pokemon series:

Like i mentioned in post above writers could had explore on deeper level meaning behind water pokemon master title doing build up on what was started through Misty fascination over E4 members(never having storyline of someone trying to reach such position) and various mysteries Whirl Cup tournament introduced breaking new frontiers with it.
Thus introducing through Misty completely new way of using pokemon in battle. Like]underwater battles or races taking place on various water areas AG generation could be commend for being like measurable checkpoints revealing what water master title truly entails.

Have through enthusiastic and passionate water specialist promote large number of dual water pokemon and all kind of upgraded and more flexible new attacks attri9butive to them thanks to third generation.

Have Misty instead of Ash play mentor role to May having earlier case of two girls in same cast. Working on overcoming their differences and developing close friendship.
Hell Misty could as i mentioned above even be involved in villain plot regarding legendary water pokemon and Team Aqua.

With end game for her in Hoenn opening gates for eventually becoming renowned water expert apprentice teaching her secrets of how to unlock full power of water pokemon. Being on her road to one day become E4 herself like her idol Lorelei is.

With character receiving actual closure to her story and progress on being on her way to achieve her ambitions. Unlike it was case with whole messed up situation at gym, unclear future and undefined path Misty will follow to reach her goals thus never getting conclusion to her storyline honestly.

Even contests could have worked as means of Misty trying them to develop better defensive techniques and more creative style with water pokemon with Wallace as one of strongest water trainers in world serving as inspiration to her to try out his approach. In mixing rough battle style with contest techniques. Using it as side way to become more skilled herself.

So yes I have multiple reasons to believe how through abit of work, incentive and creativity experimenting with character roles longer stay of Ash traveling companions could had deliver exciting new arcs and ways to develop story and characters just like other long running shows with same cast did without audience being bored.

While at same time having connected adventure which doesn't feel like afterthought but credible following where everything achieved in past isn't suddenly forgotten doing gradual evolution of adventure and all elements forming pokemon story.

Even if the anime had put more effort on Misty's goal I don't see how it would be interesting. Water Pokemon are one of the most boring types because mostly are lame fishes unable to move in land and battles on water would get boring quickly.
To be fair just because you can't imagine any way in which more attention to water pokemon could be interesting doesn't mean writers couldn't dissuade us making something indeed prominent out of it. If anything water is most widespread and abundant specie out there. Majority of this pokemon are amphibious being capable of battling both in and out of water. And even fully aquatic ones could play engaging role in Misty story if battles like underwater matches which whenever they happened were highly exciting imo or racing avoiding various obstacles and skillfully using pokemon techniques to hinder competition would be implemented in tournaments as part of Misty goal being advanced.

With water being type paired up with any other specie out there increasing its versatility heavily containing wide range of flexible techniques to pull pout in my opinion spectacular battles and feats. Actually I think this most numerous type is among most interesting ones, but it never received opportunity to be used to full potential.

It would have been also cool to see Misty facing new water pokemon she never came in contact like Surskit directly confronting her fear from bugs and prejudices she formed about pokemon choosing them by looks. Deconstructing her personality barriers and from where this displease comes from coming to realize how every pokemon is valuable.
Explore on her parents who abandoned her and sisters in early childhood and if her tough, headstrong side being at times distrustful and abrasive was result of having to grow up fast feeling lonely and angered. With her desire to become water pokemon master being so important to her to be renowned and string water expert being born as passion as result of her parents being potentially water masters and renowned figures wanting to prove herself as being equally worthy. Questioning if this is product of her revolt or true desire inheriting this love and passion from them.Etc, etc.

There are all kind of things, diverse directions and twists writers could had introduce in Misty story allowing to be fleshed out more than she was progressing. Directions which way I see it had potential to tell eventful and satisfying adventure.
 
Last edited:
Top