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Worst Loss In The Pokemon Anime?

A Wild Luxray

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In any given competition, there's always gonna be a winner and a loser. Sometimes you might see scenarios where both parties end up in a draw, but in most cases, you'll have a winner and a loser. This topic is dedicated to those losses in the Pokemon anime. Not just any loss though. Its losses that truly frustrated you whether it felt wrong, forced, or just all around terrible to begin with. This doesn't just apply to Ash though. This is for all of his friends who have thrown themselves into any kind of competition. So what do you think? Which loss in the Pokemon anime bothered you the most?
 

cricketlaxwolvesbandy

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I’m not going to say Ash vs Alain, Ash vs Cameron, Ash vs Team Rocket, etc, because the worst loss is actually Ashs Oshawott against Cheren’s Herdier.
This was AFTER the Unova League.
Edit: Misread the question. Most frustrating loss is easily Ash vs Alain. It was done so bad what a fuck up.
 
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Ghost Diplocaulus

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I know I seem like a broken record, but Ash vs Cameron is still the worst loss Ash has ever had, and I don't think there's a force in this universe capable of convincing me otherwise. His loss to Trip in their rematch was also awful: I can let the result of their first fight slide due to Pikachu's handicapped condition, but Ash should have defeated Trip in their rematch. At the very least Pikachu should have taught that cocky Servine a lesson.

As for battles that don't involve Ash, I was pretty annoyed by the Paul vs Barry battle at the Sinnoh League. I don't mind Barry losing, but I didn't think it was fair to not let him knock out at least one of Paul's Pokemon. Ursaring definitely should have lost to Empoleon.
 

A Wild Luxray

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Gonna say Ash's loss to Alain in the Kalos League. No loss infuriated me more because this is a battle Ash SHOULD have won. This was his time to win a league. The story really looked like it was pointing towards Ash winning, which made it even more frustrating. We watched Ash face Alain three times prior to the league and he lost each battle, all in the middle of the mastering Ash-Greninja arc they've been building up. When Ash and Greninja finally mastered it, it felt like 'Okay, NOW we're ready for Alain'. They shoved it down our throats that Alain and his Mega Charizard X were insanely OP, even showing him in the league sweeping opponents. It was just like Tobias' Darkrai. This was the writers saying this is THE Pokemon to beat in the league. It was getting to the point where Alain was coming across as far too perfect at the time. He needed to be knocked down a few pegs. It felt like the story was actually pointing towards Ash FINALLY triumphing over Alain. They even hyped up that mega Water Shuriken disc in clips, yet it amounted to nothing. It didn't even leave a scratch. Ash loses and Alain continues his perfect streak that needed to be broken. They just couldn't break the status-quo one more series sooner, especially considering we knew Ash wasn't originally doing any badge quest or anything going into SuMo. I honestly thought that with no sign of Ash going on a badge quest he would have won here. No loss felt more infuriating than Ash's loss to Alain.
 
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JinksChow

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I can at least grit my teeth and rewatch Ash v Alain or Ash v Ritchie (or any other of Ash's league losses for that matter), but I cannot physically bring myelf to rewatch Ash v Cameron. It's like Cameron brought Ash to his level of idiocy, and then managed to beat him by virtue of having more experience at being an idiot.
 

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I don't think that this is the worst loss in the anime, because, hey, Ash VS Cameron was a thing, unfortunately, but I think Dawn VS Zoey is still difficult to navigate through imo. Like, I'm not mad that Zoey won or anything, frankly, if Dawn were to lose, she's the only one I would be somewhat comfortable with tbh. But there were some writing choices in that battle that just really bothers me in a way that it's too difficult to ignore.

You see, in the ep prior to that, DP176 to be more exact, in the battle against Nando, Zoey starts off combining Shock Wave and Energy Ball, earning points, and Nando canceled that out, earning even more, which is absolutely fine and all. But in the next episode, DP177, Dawn makes the first move by combining Aura Sphere and Bubble Beam, but for some bizarre reason, while she doesn't get anything, Zoey gets points by deflecting that. Like.... what? Dawn did the exact same thing Zoey did! Why didn't she got any points when Zoey earned them by doing the exact same thing in the literal previous episode????

And then we come to the thing that bothers me the absolute most, which is the final combo that Zoey did. Not only there's the issue of it just being visually less impressive than Dawn's, but there's a bigger problem in that. For those unaware, literally just 15 eps prior (!), in the battle against Ursula, she trapped Mamoswine and Cyndaquil in an Encore loop, and subsequently, they broke free by attacking each other. The main point of that ep was to showcase that Pokémon attacking each other in a Contest Battle is very bad, hence Dawn nearly making herself lose said battle and getting heavily penalized.

But then Zoey just straight up Thunderbolts her own Gallade, clearly hurting him, if we can infer by his literal screams of pain, but that's not even acknowledged. And to make matters worse, that was clearly rehearsed. So you're telling me that Zoey knowingly and willingly hurt her own Pokémon multiple times, both off-screen and on-screen, and she doesn't even gets a measly slap in the wrist?

Do you see what my problem here was? Zoey, in that battle, was just not being held to the same level that Dawn was. It literally felt like Zoey could get away with a bunch of stuff while Dawn got penalized throughout her whole journey when she did the same, and that bothers me to no end.
 

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Contest wins or losses never made any sense in terms of the point bar, the writers just had whoever they wanted to win, win using techniques that others would have lost for. It literally happened for every single contest battle in the anime even in DP.

To this day I don't think the writers themselves even knew what rules they wanted to make for the Contests, they seemed to just randomly change per episode.
 

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As for battles that don't involve Ash, I was pretty annoyed by the Paul vs Barry battle at the Sinnoh League. I don't mind Barry losing, but I didn't think it was fair to not let him knock out at least one of Paul's Pokemon. Ursaring definitely should have lost to Empoleon.
I have trouble explaining it exactly but I find something about the game rival getting crushed so badly by the anime original rival feels sort of bizarre.
 

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I feel like the Unova league was where the writers just kinda gave up. Sure other league losses can be disappointing, but the Unova league generally felt like the writers just didn't care about anything that was happening. It really is strange watching it now too, it's sandwiched between the Sinnoh and Kalos leagues and it's written in a way that made it the most uneventful and forgettable league of the series.
 

Unireon

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The Kalos League Final, hands down.
So much build-up wasted, teasing that turned out to be outright baiting.
However, I still suspect that some higher-up vetoed the scenario of Satoshi winning.

Satoshi vs Kotetsu is a close second, thanks to an Asspulled Deus-ex-Machina.

The thing in common between both is the writers making an excessive use of plot-armor.

Though; while I still despise Alan, my liking for Kotetsu has never waned.
 

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It's a tough one between Cameron and Alain for me. Ash vs Cameron was so nonsensical and painful to watch, with stupid decisions being made by both parties throughout. But I didn't have any expectations for it. I figured Ash would go down, but not like this. Honestly this defeat is kinda fitting for how he was handled in BW. He became a moron and lost to a bigger moron.

Alain though, god. They built that up soo much. It was Ash's biggest battle that series and was treated as such. All the stars seemed to align to him winning. It baffles me that they put all this effort into writing this beautiful character arc for him and Greninja throughout the series, but didn't give him the payoff for it. You'd think with how competently Ash was treated that series they'd look past silly constraints like this. It tainted Greninja for me, I still like it but Infernape is always better imo.
 

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I still maintain Yajima and the other writers originally did intend for Ash to win the Kalos League, but some of the higher up execs vetoed the idea and told them no. Ash losing to a rival and the same pokemon continuously is usually not how this show operates. Whenever Ash loses to the same rival and pokemon multiple times he usually beats them in the league. The entire build up was for Ash and Greninja to win.

There definitely felt like some executive meddling going on because the writers led on too much of it being Ash's big victory just to do the opposite. You never really see the show do that, it would be like Ash and Infernape losing to Paul again in the Sinnoh league and never getting their big victory.
 

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I still maintain Yajima and the other writers originally did intend for Ash to win the Kalos League, but some of the higher up execs vetoed the idea and told them no. Ash losing to a rival and the same pokemon continuously is usually not how this show operates. Whenever Ash loses to the same rival and pokemon multiple times he usually beats them in the league. The entire build up was for Ash and Greninja to win.

There definitely felt like some executive meddling going on because the writers led on too much of it being Ash's big victory just to do the opposite. You never really see the show do that, it would be like Ash and Infernape losing to Paul again in the Sinnoh league and never getting their big victory.
I'd love to get an official answer about this someday, perhaps when the series has ended and someone's willing to talk about some of the behind-the-scenes things like Takeshi Shudo did.
 

cricketlaxwolvesbandy

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I'd love to get an official answer about this someday, perhaps when the series has ended and someone's willing to talk about some of the behind-the-scenes things like Takeshi Shudo did.
Yajima ignored this when he did the post series interview but had the balls to say that Amourshipping would possibly become canon. He probably refrained talking about the League thanks to the higher ups or he is guilty.
Honestly it’s a shame because we can speculate all we want because we likely won’t get the definite answer. All I know is that Ash losing the Kalos League makes ZERO sense because the Elite 4 exists and they ended up contradicting that with him winning the Alola League. It seems very suspicious especially with all the buildup since the last episode of BW. You can say Sinnoh but their was nowhere near the hints and buildup like Kalos did. They could have least had Greninja beat Charizard after the Flare arc or take away the title from Alain because of his involvement with Team Flare (even if it seemed like a weak consolation prize) but NOPE
I wanna be in the room where it happens...
 
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As for battles that don't involve Ash, I was pretty annoyed by the Paul vs Barry battle at the Sinnoh League. I don't mind Barry losing, but I didn't think it was fair to not let him knock out at least one of Paul's Pokemon. Ursaring definitely should have lost to Empoleon.
It's like Barry once said to Ash when he found out he battled Paul,he was up against a GIANT.Paul 3-0'ed a trainer in a battle prior to facing Barry.There's some things to consider when trying to figure out why Barry couldn't KO none of Paul's pokemon.Paul has been training his pokemon at a higher capacity than Barry's,look at the difference in Barry's Empoleon's stats on the computer and then look at Paul's Electivire's stats and see a big difference.

Electivire and Ursaring only been with Paul for 1 region and got turned into huge powerhouses in a short amount of time,we could say the same thing for his Drapion if it's true that it was caught in the wild and wasn't borrowed from his brother Reggie.Going off their 3 v 3 match it's safe to say that Barry put most of his focus on his Empoleon and less on his other pokemon.His Skarmory got one shotted by one Flamethrower from Magmortar,yeah it was at a type disadvantage but the anime has shown that you can still work around that.

Paul constantly switched out his pokemon despite of Skarmory's Spikes Entry Hazard which tells you that Paul has confidence in his pokemon taking a huge amount of punishment without fainting,his rigorous training system played a good part in that.Ursaring being able to take super effective moves from Barry's Hitmonlee plus it's own Focus Blast after being sent back by Empoleon is believable.

It was being built as one of Paul's strongest since it first got captured and gradually got stronger each time it made an appearance.It was definetly evident in the Lake Acuity battle where it swept half of Ash's team along with taking a lot of damage.Pikachu struck it with Thunderbolt and Ursaring just took it and knocked it into the water with Hammer Arm,this was after using Bulk Up & it's ability Guts activating.
 

Ghost Diplocaulus

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It's like Barry once said to Ash when he found out he battled Paul,he was up against a GIANT.Paul 3-0'ed a trainer in a battle prior to facing Barry.There's some things to consider when trying to figure out why Barry couldn't KO none of Paul's pokemon.Paul has been training his pokemon at a higher capacity than Barry's,look at the difference in Barry's Empoleon's stats on the computer and then look at Paul's Electivire's stats and see a big difference.

Electivire and Ursaring only been with Paul for 1 region and got turned into huge powerhouses in a short amount of time,we could say the same thing for his Drapion if it's true that it was caught in the wild and wasn't borrowed from his brother Reggie.Going off their 3 v 3 match it's safe to say that Barry put most of his focus on his Empoleon and less on his other pokemon.His Skarmory got one shotted by one Flamethrower from Magmortar,yeah it was at a type disadvantage but the anime has shown that you can still work around that.

Paul constantly switched out his pokemon despite of Skarmory's Spikes Entry Hazard which tells you that Paul has confidence in his pokemon taking a huge amount of punishment without fainting,his rigorous training system played a good part in that.Ursaring being able to take super effective moves from Barry's Hitmonlee plus it's own Focus Blast after being sent back by Empoleon is believable.

It was being built as one of Paul's strongest since it first got captured and gradually got stronger each time it made an appearance.It was definetly evident in the Lake Acuity battle where it swept half of Ash's team along with taking a lot of damage.Pikachu struck it with Thunderbolt and Ursaring just took it and knocked it into the water with Hammer Arm,this was after using Bulk Up & it's ability Guts activating.
Sorry, I just don't see why any of this means Barry shouldn't have knocked out any of Paul's Pokemon. Paul was obviously going to win that fight anyway since there's no way he wasn't gonna face Ash, so what's the harm in letting just one of his Pokemon get KO'd here? Besides, unlike those other times it endured hits, Ursaring had tanked multiple powerful super-effective STAB attacks from Hitmonlee on top of burn's residual damage whereas in the Lake Acuity battle just about every attack Ursaring took was just neutral, and most were less powerful than Close Combat and High Jump Kick, sometimes considerably so. Yes, it has a lot of endurance but having a lot of endurance doesn't automatically equal complete invulnerability, and Chimchar and Regice had already proved that Ursaring isn't invincible. Also, if that thing is really oh so powerful and great, then it being beaten by its own attack being deflected back at it would have both made perfect sense and been highly fitting.
 
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Sorry, I just don't see why any of this means Barry shouldn't have knocked out any of Paul's Pokemon. Paul was obviously going to win that fight anyway since there's no way he wasn't gonna face Ash, so what's the harm in letting just one of his Pokemon get KO'd here? Besides, unlike those other times it endured hits, Ursaring had tanked multiple powerful super-effective STAB attacks from Hitmonlee on top of burn's residual damage whereas in the Lake Acuity battle just about every attack Ursaring took was just neutral, and most were less powerful than Close Combat and High Jump Kick, sometimes considerably so. Yes, it has a lot of endurance but having a lot of endurance doesn't automatically equal complete invulnerability, and Chimchar and Regice had already proved that Ursaring isn't invincible. Also, if that thing is really oh so powerful and great, then it being beaten by its own attack being deflected back at it would have both made perfect sense and been highly fitting.
No it's not invincible but it still took out half of Ash's team,Chimchar didn't truly defeat it 1 on 1 it just finished it off and before that it was due to Hax Blaze.Regice KOed a pre Lake Acuity training Ursaring but but it still managed to clash head to head with Regice using Hammer Arm which sent both flying back.

Yeah the attacks it took weren't as effective as the ones it took against Hitmonlee but let's not sit here and act like that Hitmonlee is that powerful because it's not.Plus you're not considering that Paul trained his Ursaring and others in between the Lake Acuity battle and the Sinnoh League.
 

Ghost Diplocaulus

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No it's not invincible but it still took out half of Ash's team,Chimchar didn't truly defeat it 1 on 1 it just finished it off and before that it was due to Hax Blaze.Regice KOed a pre Lake Acuity training Ursaring but but it still managed to clash head to head with Regice using Hammer Arm which sent both flying back.

Yeah the attacks it took weren't as effective as the ones it took against Hitmonlee but let's not sit here and act like that Hitmonlee is that powerful because it's not.Plus you're not considering that Paul trained his Ursaring and others in between the Lake Acuity battle and the Sinnoh League.
Chimchar did beat Ursaring 1 on 1 in another instance, though, so it isn't impossible for something to beat it solo. And Empoleon wouldn't have beaten it solo here anyways because it would have already fought Hitmonlee, who we have no way of knowing exactly how powerful it is because it literally only appeared in one battle, but it still did pretty damn well against Ursaring and in fact held the upper hand for most of the fight until Guts was activated, so forgive me if I take your claims that it's weak with a grain of salt.

Also, yes, Paul trained his Pokemon, but he's not the only one who does that: Barry himself even mentioned that he trained his Hitmonlee too and that's why it was so speedy. I get that you like Paul, but you seem to have this habit of downplaying the acomplishments of everyone around him just to make it seem that he's not just the best trainer ever, but literally the only one that's even remotely competent.

Lastly, that still doesn't answer why it's such a crime for Ursaring to be KO'd in that battle. Even if it's not a totally perfect victory, a 1-3 win still makes Paul look amazingly strong due to how rare it is for battles to not come down to the last remaining Pokemon on each trainer's side.
 
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Chimchar did beat Ursaring 1 on 1 in another instance, though, so it isn't impossible for something to beat it solo. And Empoleon wouldn't have beaten it solo here anyways because it would have already fought Hitmonlee, who we have no way of knowing exactly how powerful it is because it literally only appeared in one battle, but it still did pretty damn well against Ursaring and in fact held the upper hand for most of the fight until Guts was activated, so forgive me if I take your claims that it's weak with a grain of salt.
Yh it helped Paul capture Ursaring but that didn't matter later on when they eventually fought because it was dominating Chimchar up until Blaze activated.We don't how strong Hitmonlee truly is but I know for certain it's not on the level of Ursaring which is why I find it silly that it would be capable of defeating it 1 on 1.Ursaring is a lot like Ash's Snorlax as far as taking a lot of blows.

Look at it against Greta's Medicham.You say Hitmonlee had the "upper hand" because it landed effective hits as if Ursaring was on the verge of losing.Don't you know that Paul has a huge habit of not commanding his pokemon to dodge?We saw plenty of that with Barry btw.DODGE,DODGE and DODGE!!Also, yes, Paul trained his Pokemon, but he's not the only one who does that: Barry himself even mentioned that he trained his Hitmonlee too and that's why it was so speedy.
Also, yes, Paul trained his Pokemon, but he's not the only one who does that: Barry himself even mentioned that he trained his Hitmonlee too and that's why it was so speedy. I get that you like Paul, but you seem to have this habit of downplaying the acomplishments of everyone around him just to make it seem that he's not just the best trainer ever, but literally the only one that's even remotely competent.

Lastly, that still doesn't answer why it's such a crime for Ursaring to be KO'd in that battle. Even if it's not a totally perfect victory, a 1-3 win still makes Paul look amazingly strong due to how rare it is for battles to not come down to the last remaining Pokemon on each trainer's side.
Barry doesn't train his pokemon the way Paul does.You mentioned that his Hitmonlee is speedy but where is the power and endurance?It's quite obvious that Barry put most of his focus on Empoleon,this isn't the case with Paul as he puts focus on multiple pokemon.

What have I said about Paul that isn't true?He's one of the most skilled regular trainers in the series but I personally have him at #1.As far competence and intelligence goes he's gotta be #1 in that for non Champion and E4 trainers.Barry isn't as competent or as skilled as Paul so this isn't even worth talking about.You have a problem with me giving praise to Paul but if it was Ash you wouldn't be bothered by it.

There's nothing wrong with Paul losing 1 on his pokemon in a battle but it has to be believable,most of his pokemon can KO more than 1 pokemon depending on who they're facing.
 
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