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| Ash's Pikachu
サトシのピカチュウ Satoshi's Pikachu
Ash and Pikachu.
| This Pokémon has not evolved.
Ash's Pikachu (Japanese: サトシのピカチュウ Satoshi's Pikachu) was the first Pokémon obtained by Ash on his journey as a Pokémon trainer. Its universal voice actress is 大谷育江 Ikue Ohtani. However, in some episodes during the first season of the English dub, Rachael Lillis provided its voice when the original Japanese track couldn't be saved.
In the anime
In the first episode of the Pokémon anime, Pokémon, I Choose You!, Ash woke up late the day he was supposed to go to Professor Oak's laboratory to obtain his first Pokémon. When he arrived at the lab, the three available starter Pokémon, Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle had already been taken by other trainers who arrived earlier. Seeing that Ash was disappointed, Professor Oak gave him Pikachu, which did not take a liking to its new trainer. It refused to go into a Poké Ball, and when Ash failed to catch a wild Pokémon, it laughed at him. However, by the end of the episode, Ash gained Pikachu's trust by protecting it from an attack by a flock of Spearow and rushing it to the Pokémon Center. Pikachu and Ash soon became inseparable. In Pikachu's Goodbye, Ash gave Pikachu his consent to remain in a forest filled with Pikachu, but Pikachu returned to Ash's side.
In general, Pikachu as a species are not particularly powerful, but Ash's Pikachu is an anomaly, overcoming odds in battle numerous times. In Showdown in Pewter City, it defeated Brock's Onix with an Template:Type2 attack when Onix was drenched in water, despite Onix being naturally resistant to electricity. In Electric Shock Showdown, Pikachu fought Lt. Surge's Raichu and lost. During a resulting hospital stay, it refused to become Raichu's equal by evolving via a Thunderstone, and in the second battle, Pikachu overcame Raichu by using its superior speed. In Pokémon Emergency!, Meowth remarked that Pikachu's power "far exceeds its evolutionary level." Ash's Pikachu has also defeated very high level Pokémon that Ash's other Pokémon were unable to, such as Dragonite and Metagross. It has helped Ash win innumerable battles and Gym and League matches.
Pikachu is extremely loyal to Ash, and while it is not always immediately trusting of strangers, it is generally friendly to humans and Pokémon alike. It acted as a guardian and big sibling to Misty's Togepi, and has been seen mediating and even breaking up fights among other Pokémon, such as in Pikachu's Vacation. In Mewtwo Strikes Back, Pikachu, Meowth, and Meowth's clone were the only Pokémon not to participate in the giant battle; Pikachu stood motionless as its clone repeatedly slapped its face.
Since Ash's first encounter with Team Rocket in Pokémon Emergency!, Pikachu has been pursued by the trio of Jessie, James, and Meowth. Throughout the series, it has been Jessie, James and Meowth's desire to pokénap, con, swipe, rip off, purloin, steal, burglarize, snatch and rob this Pokémon from Ash and present it to their boss. To do this, they devised many attempts and devised many evil plans and came up with many scams and many other terrible schemes to fulfill that task. Jessie, James and Meowth try, try, and try some more, but despite trying hard at pulling the evil deed, every last one of their fiendish and conniving efforts and evil plans failed each time. Either their plans were stopped by Ash and his friends and/or every other trainer Ash and his friends assisted throughout the series, including the Officer Jennies in general.
As shown in a handful of episodes, the first being Showdown at Dark City, Pikachu has a special fondness for ketchup, but it will eat and enjoy almost any other human or Pokémon food. A running joke in the anime also seems to be the destruction of a female character's bike with one of Pikachu's Thunderbolts at the beginning of each series, which then causes her to follow Ash for the remainder of the series. This has happened to Misty, May, and Dawn so far.
Pikachu is the primary mascot of the Pokémon franchise, mostly due to Ash's ownership of it. It appears on nearly all merchandise and promotional material for the series, and became, due to the anime, the version mascot of and only starter Pokémon in Pokémon Yellow.
Pikachu became the second non-legendary to defeat a legendary Pokémon in the anime after Charizard, beating Brandon's Regice in Pace - The Final Frontier, giving Ash his final Frontier Symbol.
Pikachu was also the only Pokémon to come with Ash to Hoenn, and just the same one of only two Pokémon to join Ash on his journey to Sinnoh. It is worth noting that Ash tried to bring only Pikachu again but Aipom snuck on board the ship. Up until the capture of Dawn's Pachirisu, Pikachu was the only Template:Type2 Pokémon in the anime owned by a main character.
In Hoenn, Pikachu learned how to surf. It also learned how to box from Ash in The Punchy Pokémon.
Pikachu has taken part in Ash's first Sinnoh Gym Battle. It went against Roark's Cranidos after Aipom was defeated. After being switched out, it fought Onix, whom Pikachu was defeated by. At Ash's rematch, Pikachu defeated Onix, and then fought Rampardos.
(Moves that have been used most recently are italicized)
In the games
Pikachu was one of Ash's three Pokémon in Pokémon Puzzle League. Red's Pikachu in Pokémon Yellow also seems to be based off of him.
In the manga
Pikachu has appeared in two mangas based on the anime, namely Ash & Pikachu and Electric Tale of Pikachu. In both, it was Ash's starter Pokémon, much like the first anime episode, though in Electric Tale, it was found in Ash's house, not given to him by Oak.
- Pikachu is Ash's only Template:Type2 Pokémon and was the only Electric-type owned by a main character in the anime until the capture of Dawn's Pachirisu.
- Some of Pikachu's speech is consistent enough that it seems that some phrases actually mean something. For instance, Pikachu always uses "Pikapi" when referring to Ash (notice that it sounds somewhat similar to "Satoshi"). Other speech includes:
- For A Staravia is Born, Professor Oak's lecture is about Ash's Pikachu. He writes this Pokémon senryū about it: パートナー サトシとピカチュウ いいかんじ Partners Satoshi and Pikachu: a pleasant feeling.
- Because there is no indent on Pikachu's tail, many cite this as proof that it is indeed male. Others disagree, noting Pikachu is from Kanto (which has not been shown to have Pikachu with indented tails in either anime or games), and was introduced during the Generation I games, long before gender differences came to be shown.
- Some also site a crush that Dawn's Buneary, who is female, has on Pikachu as proof.
- In DP061, Pachirisu, Piplup and Buneary are cheering for Dawn in cheerleader outfit, while Pikachu is wearing a male kimono. This may suggest Pachirisu, Piplup and Buneary are female, while Pikachu is male.
- In DP062, it and Turtwig also look embarrassed being in maid outfits, much like Ash himself is, which may indicate that both Pikachu and Turtwig are male.
- Out of all five regions that Ash visited, Kanto and Hoenn are the only ones that Ash started out with just Pikachu. He did try to go to Sinnoh with Pikachu alone but Aipom followed him. At the beginning of each, Pikachu was also, in some way, injured, and ended up destroying the bike of a girl who would later travel with Ash.
- Throughout the series the yellowish color of Pikachu has become lighter and Pikachu's body has become more slender.
- Pikachu has never been seen defeating any of Gary's Pokémon.
- Pikachu was the first of Ash's Pokémon to disobey him. Other Pokémon that would do so, and be better remembered for their disobedience than Pikachu, are Primeape and Charizard.
- Pikachu has battled all the members of the Electabuzz evolutionary family at one time or the other but has not won even once. (Pikachu battled Rudy's Electabuzz, Gary's Electivire and Paul's Elekid)
For more information on this Pokémon's species, see Pikachu.