Ask around and you'd be hardpressed to find a person who was not aware of what the pokemon franchise is. Spanning decades of series, card games, online games, and even video games, Pokemon is a major success and a legitimate global powerhouse.
For this to happen, the franchise needed standout moments and some of these can be seen throughout different episodes of its many series. Between the personality of Ash and the many pocket monsters, one can find something to get excited about.
10 GOODBYE...AND THEN, SETTING OFF 8.3
Departures and goodbyes are never easy. Whether it's the real world or anime, no person truly likes parting company with their friends, even temporarily. So, it's no surprise that both the trainers and audience watching on would find this a somewhat somber episode. Despite this, the episode tries its best to play the goodbye off in the lightest manner possible. This fits the theme of ‘looking forward to the future’ that the series has been pushing since its inception. This means that, even when the group splits up, it's clear that each member will be fine while continuing to chase their dreams.
9 BLAZE, NYABBY! OVERTHROW GAOGAEN 8.3
This is one of the more action intense episodes of Pokemon, which sees Ash and the enthusiastic Litten push themselves to the limit in order to grow. After witnessing their first Pokemon Battle Royal, both Ash and Litten are supercharged and excited to challenge The Masked Royal and his Incineroar. Upon getting this battle, both Ash and Litten are easily defeated, but not before they give their all to win. This really warms the heart, as it was clear that Litten stood little chance, but the spirit and bravery shown was truly endearing and made for a fantastic episode.
8 LOST POKEMON HITOKAGE 8.4
A fundamental part of the Pokeverse is the bond between a pokemon and its trainer. When one catches and trains a pokemon, an intimate bond is created between that Pokemon and its trainer. This often leads to a bond of loyalty and friendship being formed. In this episode, we meet a Charmander who's been abandoned by its trainer but, still, it stays and waits, hoping the trainer will return one day. Unfortunately, this trainer had no intention of returning and when Ash and his gang realize this, they try to rescue this pokemon before it dies. It's a good thing they did as this same Charmander rescued them when Team Rocket tried to steal Pikachu. After seeing the love that Ash had for it, the Charmander decided to leave his trainer and join Ash. This again highlights Ash's strength as a trainer and a pokemon loyalty.
7 RIVAL CONFRONTATION! KAMEX VS LIZARDON 8.4
Pokemon battles are always one of the most interesting parts of the series. There's nothing like two trainers and their pokemon going at it to see who will come out on top. This episode is focused squarely on Ash and his battle against his rival Gary. Naturally, this gets the blood pumping as one of Ash's major goals throughout the series has been to get the best of Gary; what ensues as one of the most heated and exciting clashes in the series. At the climax of this battle, Ash uses a clever strategy to create steam around the battlefield, before using a seismic toss to win the battle and defeat Gary.
6 POKEMON, I CHOOSE YOU 8.5
The first-ever episode of Pokemon signified not only the beginning of Ash’s journey, but also the start of a series that would be known all around the world. This episode does a brilliant job of introducing the audience to the world of pokemon. It explains the basic rules of this world of Pokemon, as well as shows why we should care about our protagonist, Ash Ketchum. Ash is a determined and kind pokemon trainer, and this is noticeable when he was willing to sacrifice himself in order to protect his Pikachu. The same Pikachu who had ridiculed and electrocuted him throughout the day. This episode also does a good job in creating that initial bond between pokemon and trainer (a bond that would go on for decades).
5 THE DOUBLE BATTLE IN HYAKKOKU GYM! GOJIKA'S FUTURE SIGHT !! 8.5
It was quite fitting that the final episode of Pokemon XY culminated in yet another epic gym battle. Ash faced off against the overwhelming threat of Olympia and her pokemon’s special ability, 'Future Sight', which had him up against the wall for most of the battle. This forced Ash to grow as a trainer and, just like his pokemon, he 'evolved' in order to secure victory. While up against Olympia, Ash devised a clever strategy to take advantage of his opponent's future sight ability. This clever strategy changes the tide of battle and allowed Ash to secure the Psychic badge.
4 ALOLA AT KANTO! TAKESHI AND KASUMI 8.8
Ash and his team return to Kanto where they meet up with Brock and Misty, a truly heartwarming sight for fans of the original series. The nostalgia doesn't end there though, as this episode basically serves as a pokemon exhibit. Throughout the episode, the trainers explore professor Oak's pokemon lab to their heart's content, during which we come across some series favorites, such as Bulbasaur and Rapidash. However, the education doesn't end there, with Brock pointing out several differences between the Kanto and Alolan Pokemon throughout the episode. This episode provides a sincere blast of nostalgia and longtime fans will be sure to enjoy it.
3 NYABBY, TIME TO BEGIN THE JOURNEY! 8.9
Pokemon episodes that focus on the feelings of the actual pokemon are always fascinating. This episode focuses on the bond a Litten has with a Stoutland. This was truly fascinating to witness, as it highlighted the depth pokemon truly have. One could be forgiven for viewing them somewhat as animals or pets, but this really highlights that, at their core, each pokemon is a character with feelings. Another heartwarming aspect of this episode has to be getting to witness how far Ash is willing to go in order to help pokemon. When Litten seemed down and out, Ash never gave up on him and helped nurse his mourning heart. This again highlights why Ash stands head and shoulders above many trainers of this world.
2 WHEN REGIONS COLLIDE 8.9
When regions collide, you get an exciting episode packed with battles from start to finish. The animation, sound, and music were a highlight of this fast-paced episode. This episode featured 4 unique pokemon battles with the audience getting to see Brock and Misty take center stage for the first time in a while. If that wasn't enough, the audience gets to witness both Misty and Brock use mega evolution. All these factors combine to make a very memorable episode that both new and longtime fans will thoroughly enjoy.
1 MEMORIES IN THE MIST 9.2
It's always an emotional time when one reflects on the loved ones we have lost, so it’s no surprise that this episode of Pokemon is a legitimate tear-jerker. This episode blurs the realm of life and death together and allowed our trainers to interact with their loved ones, who've already passed, due to Tapu Fini's special mist ability. This allows Mallow to have a heartwarming reconciliation with her mother, while Ash and Torracat were able to say one final goodbye to Stoutland. This episode featured wonderful music which, when paired with the sad theme of the episode, makes for one breathtaking episode of Pokemon.