Ashs 10 Best Pokémon (That He Never Uses)
Ash has caught so many Pokémon throughout his journey, but some never seem to get a chance to shine.
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Pokémon has become one of the most popular franchises of all time and the series has been able to transcend its original roots as a video game. The Pokémon video games are still a major pillar of the series, but the Pokémon anime has reached just as big of an audience and it acts as an exciting adaptation of the material that’s covered in the video games.
The Pokémon anime benefits from its regular protagonist, Ash Ketchum, who steadily improves as a Pokémon trainer during his journeys across the many regions. Ash has done a decent job with the Pokémon that he’s added to his party over the years, but he has a habit of neglecting some of his captures, some of which are actually incredible and powerful Pokémon.
10 Quilava Improves Upon A Valuable Starter Pokémon
In many ways the Pokémon anime series is supposed to operate as a companion piece to the series’ most recent video game entries. Ash moves between many different regions throughout the Pokémon world and he usually encounters the collection of starter Pokémon for each respective Pokémon title. Ash has owned many different starter Pokémon, but Quilava is one of the more powerful examples since Ash gets it to evolve from a Cyndaquil. Ash’s Quilava helps him make his mark early on in the Johto region, but it’s a Pokémon that he unjustifiably leaves behind with Professor Oak.
9 Torterra Can Take A Beating & Dish It Out
When Ash works his way over to the Sinnoh region he’s already seen plenty of adventures as a Pokémon trainer. One of the earlier captures that Ash makes here is a Turtwig, which he collectively spends over 150 episodes with as he raises it to a Grotle and ultimately a Torterra. Torterra is an absolute beast, which makes it so disappointing that Ash also discards the Pokémon when he sets his sights for Unova. Torterra has made a brief cameo, but this juggernaut has been largely out of the picture since the anime’s Diamond and Pearl series.
8 Leavanny Is Elegant & Extremely Dangerous
Any Pokémon that Ash helps evolve through several of its forms usually becomes a valuable member of his team. Ash devotes so much time to these Pokémon that it stands to reason that he’d want to keep them around. Leavanny receives this treatment and the evolved Pokémon is one of Ash’s more reliable Grass-Type Pokémon during his battles throughout the Unova region.
Leavanny makes a strong impression in the Black & White anime, but the Pokémon has barely been featured afterward. The anime occasionally references Leavanny, but many of these moments are independent of Ash’s affection for the Pokémon.
7 Infernape Focuses His Anger Into Strength
Ash has had many powerful Fire-Type Pokémon and curiously many of these Pokémon seem to have emotional issues that help forge an intimate bond. Ash first acquires Infernape when it’s a Chimchar after it’s been abandoned by its former trainer. It’s a tragic circumstance, but Ash helps improve the Pokémon’s wellbeing. Infernape is a beast on the battlefield and it fuels some of Ash’s most exciting battles. Infernape is basically forgotten about after Ash leaves the Pokémon with Professor Oak once he heads forward to Unova, but it’s a foolish move considering the Pokémon’s strength and its difficult past.
6 Noivern Is Full Of Surprises
Ash is such a cheerful protagonist and his pleasant nature is often reflected with his Pokémon party. Noivern is a fascinating exception to this rule and it makes for one of Ash’s most entertaining Pokémon during his time in the Kalos region. Ash raises Noivern from a Pokémon Egg and doesn’t squander the Pokémon’s raw power. Ash wins some difficult battles, including a grueling fight against a Zapdos, thanks to Noivern’s skills. Ash spends a large portion of Pokémon the Series: XY depending on Noivern, yet the Pokémon is barely referenced after the anime’s conclusion.
5 Sceptile Grows Into One Of Ash’s Best Partners
Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire chronicles Ash’s new adventures throughout the Hoenn region and one of his first Pokémon upon entering is the popular starter Pokémon, Treecko. Ash helps Treecko evolve into a Sceptile and it’s a Pokémon that’s helped Ash conquer many tournament battles.
Sceptile demonstrates such strength and utility that it’s genuinely disheartening when Ash deserts him once he gets ready to storm Sinnoh. Sceptile thankfully shows up in Diamond and Pearl’s anime, but it’s a disappointing use of the Pokémon and acts as a poor note to leave Sceptile on.
4 Melmetal Is A Mythical Powerhouse
The majority of the Pokémon that Ash captures are creatures that are early in their evolutionary line or the kind of Pokémon that are basic but can be turned into formidable fighters. Melmetal is an exception and it’s not just the first Steel-type Pokémon that Ash has owned, but it’s also his first Mythical Pokémon. Ash raises Melmetal all the way from its earlier Meltan state and it gives him a major advantage during his battles in the Alola region. However, afterward, Ash largely cleans the slate and leaves Melmetal in the dust.
3 Lycanroc Channels Its Fighting Spirit
Ash has been on Pokémon adventures for so many years that it’s understandable that a few of his earlier Pokémon may be forgotten. However, Lycanroc is a recent Pokémon acquisition and yet it’s one that’s already in Ash’s rearview mirror. Ash’s relationship with Lycanroc begins within the Alola region and it’s a Pokémon that he constantly uses to dominate his opponents. Lycanroc isn’t just strong, but the Pokémon is prone to develop a vicious temper that makes it even more powerful. Ash learns a lot with Lycanroc, so it’s discouraging when he forgets about the Pokémon upon his Alola exit.
2 Incineroar Hungers For A Good Fight
There are plenty of Pokémon that look incredibly powerful, only for it to turn out to be a façade. Incineroar doesn’t just look intimidating, but it also has the brute strength to back this up. Ash’s Incineroar is one his most valuable Pokémon in the Alola region and he raises it all the way from a Litten. Incineroar proves that it doesn’t just love to battle, but it displays a number of devastating Z-Moves, too. Despite everything that Incineroar brings to the table, it’s another Pokémon that Ash largely wipes from his mind once he progresses to Galar.
1 Charizard Is Too Strong For Its Own Good
Ash has owned dozens of Pokémon, but his Charizard is perhaps the best cautionary tale that he’s learned. One of his first Pokémon, Ash initially struggles to tame his Charizard and it leads to a frayed relationship between them. Charizard is easily one of Ash’s strongest Pokémon, but its temperamental issues make it a liability. Charizard stays with Ash for a long time and has made occasional appearances after their split, but the Pokémon hasn’t been important since the Black & White anime. If there’s any Pokémon that permanently deserves a spot in Ash’s party (besides Pikachu), it’s Charizard.
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