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Dawn (Japanese: ヒカリ Hikari) is a ten-year-old Pokémon Coordinator and a former traveling companion of Ash and Brock. Her goal is to become a great Pokémon Coordinator like her mother, Johanna. Her first Pokémon was a Piplup that she received from Professor Rowan in the first Diamond & Pearl series episode.
Dawn began her journey with her Piplup after bonding with it. Unlike May, she knew from the beginning that she wanted to be a Coordinator. After meeting Ash and Brock, she decided to journey with them, as their experience would likely be helpful to her. Like Ash, she is lucky enough to have seen a legendary Pokémon at the start of her journey, the projected soul of Mesprit in Following A Maiden's Voyage!.
She had a bicycle, but like Misty's and May's bikes, Ash's Pikachu destroyed it with its Thunderbolt. However, she did not mention this to Ash until more than 30 episodes after it happened. She also had planned to take a large suitcase full of dresses with her, but her mother made her leave it at home due to its impracticality. She had a Contest Pass for the Sinnoh region, and her Contest cry is "Spotlight!" (English) or "Charm up!" (Japanese). Johanna gave Dawn the first Ribbon she earned as a Coordinator for good luck.
Dawn lost her first Contest in Arrival of a Rival! to her new rival, Zoey who became one of her close friends after the contest and who later helps Dawn through many tough times. After her loss, her mother told her not to rely on her but on her friends. Eventually, in her second official Contest, Dawn narrowly beat her childhood rival Kenny to gain her first Ribbon.
She later trains with Zoey in coming up with different Contest moves regularly as evidenced by A Stand-Up Sit-Down!. However she was not able to perfect Buizel's Ice Aqua Jet despite coming up with the idea. Ash later accomplishes this in the Wallace Cup.
Despite her confidence and Contest training, in Dawn's Early Night!, when she competed in the Hearthome City Contest, she lost in the Appeal Round, making her the first of the main characters to lose a Contest by losing in the appeal round. In Team Shocker!, she lost the Appeal Round for the second time in a row. This marked a notable change in Dawn's character. After the second blow to her self-esteem, she didn't know what to do and was still very upset throughout Tanks for the Memories!. After this, she became more focused and regained her confidence after battling Maylene in Crossing the Battle Line!. Dawn began to practice in earnest and eventually was able to break her losing streak in Strategy With a Smile! and was able to win the Wallace Cup after narrowly defeating May in the final round. Dawn has since maintained her new found focus and humility.
After learning of the next Contest in Celestic Town, she became very dedicated in her training, and actually overworked her Pokémon in A Lean Mean Team Rocket Machine!. Due to her hard work, she managed to win the Contest in Battling The Generation Gap!. One of Dawn's combinations in that Contest gave Ash the inspiration for one of his notable tactic which he uses later on, the Counter Shield. In A Breed Stampede!, her Mamoswine began to disobey her after evolving. Despite this, she was still eager to train it well.
This was evidenced by how much she cared for Mamoswine in Trials and Adulations! when both of them got lost and Mamsowine was injured. Using the medical knowledge she got from Brock in Doc Brock!, she was able to heal Mamoswine making it obey her. However it still rebels and disobeys Dawn in the finals of the Lilypad Contest in Dressed for Jess Success! due to its short temper making her lose the Contest. However she remains calm and remains optimistic.
Her encounter with Mesprit and Ash and Brock's encounters with Azelf and Uxie respectively was revealed to be fate as Team Galactic intended to capture the lake guardians to awaken Dialga and Palkia in the Spear Pillar. The lake guardians communicate telepathically with Ash, Dawn and Brock and teleport them to the Team Galactic HQ. Eventually with the help of Cynthia, they foil Team Galactic's plans and free the lake guardians.
With the help of Candice and Zoey, after many failed attempts, she comes up with a new tactic, the Flame Ice. She uses this tactic later on in the Daybreak Town Contest.
While she is the only female main character not to have a sibling, she has two childhood friends that appeared in the anime, Kenny and Leona, both of whom call her Dee Dee (Japanese: ピカリ Pikari).
Dawn has prevented them from telling Ash and Brock about the reason why she has this nickname, but in Yes in Dee Dee, It's Dawn!, it was revealed that the reason for the name was due to her hair glittering (ピカピカ pikapika) after being shocked by the class pets in her kindergarten, Plusle and Minun, making it appear that she had Diamond Dandruff. Due to the trauma from being teased by her entire class with the nickname, she has a certain fear of Plusle and Minun.
Ursula uses this against Dawn by using Plusle and Minun and deliberately attempting to shock her hair. Even though Dawn temporarily succumbed to her trauma, with Mamoswine's and Cyndaquil's encouragement, she was able to get over her trauma and defeat Ursula and winning her final fifth Ribbon in the process as well allowing her to participate in the Sinnoh Grand Festival.
She later trains in Teaching the Student Teacher! where she comes up with a new tactic, the Ice Chandelier for the Sinnoh Grand Festival. This time, however, she is able to perfect the move by herself with some inspiration. After obtaining Togekiss, she trains with it to find a way around Togekiss's need to move gracefully and is able to do so successfully.
Dawn entered the Sinnoh Grand Festival in Last Call, First Round!, using her Buneary and Cyndaquil in the Appeals Round. She progressed through the round and battled Ursula first in the next episode. With Mamoswine and Pachirisu and her new combination, the Ice Chandelier, she was able to defeat Ursula's Gabite and Flareon. The following episode, she defeated Jessilina and progressed to the finals to fight Zoey.
After a very close fight between her Piplup and Togekiss and Zoey's Glameow and Gallade, however, she lost. After the finals, she returns her mother's Ribbon saying that she no longer is in her mother's shadow and only needs her Pokémon's care and support thus proving her growth as a Trainer.
After the competition, Zoey told Dawn that Candice was throwing a victory party for her in Snowpoint City and that Dawn was also welcome; however, Dawn declined the invitation, stating that she still wants to support Ash in his upcoming battle at Sunyshore Gym and in the Lily of the Valley Conference. She then thanked all the Pokémon that had traveled with her through Sinnoh for their hard work and pledged to not give up her dream of being a Top Coordinator.
Dawn in her Cheerleader outfit
After staying for Ash's Gym battle and the Sinnoh league, she contemplates whether or not to go with Ash and Brock back to Kanto. However after receiving an invitation by Paris for her Buneary, she decides to stay in Sinnoh. She and Ash later share a final high-five as they did throughout the Diamond & Pearl series before Ash and Brock leave for Kanto.
After this, Dawn decided to spend some time at home before considering her next move and spent that time developing new Contest combinations. She also spent a lot of time working with Cyndaquil, and eventually decided to head for Hoenn next knowing that it was the region that Contests originated from and she was eager to hit the Contest trail again. However she was having trouble deciding which Pokémon to take with her and which to leave with Professor Rowan. Although she knew she would take Piplup, she couldn't decide on the others as she knew there was still a lot she could do with them. Eventually, after visiting Professor Rowan and having another incident with some Ariados (which caused Cyndaquil to evolve into Quilava), Dawn decided to take all her Pokémon to Hoenn with her. Dawn soon left on her new adventure with her dream of becoming a Top Coordinator burning as bright as ever.
In BW085, it was revealed that Dawn had traveled to the Unova region and was staying in Cynthia's villa in Undella Town while the champion was visiting Virbank City. She would return with Ash who Dawn got to reunite with and was able to meet his new friends, Iris and Cilan. Before coming to Undella Town, Dawn had visited Nimbasa City where she watched a Pokémon Musical and one of Elesa's fashion shows. She also revealed that she would enter the World Championship Junior Cup.
Dawn is notable for her confidence, since she is always looking towards the future rather than dwelling on her mistakes, although she has learned that this is not always enough. In the Japanese version, her catchphrase is, "Daijōbu!" Although not consistently translated in the English dub at first, she began to regularly use "No need to worry!" In stark contrast to May's inexperience and self-doubt at the start of the Advanced Generation series, Dawn was overly confident and assured in her own strength in the beginning.
Over the course of her journey in Sinnoh, Dawn was able to come up with various combinations to show up her Pokémon's looks and strength. This began with something as simple as making her Piplup's beak grow longer, when using Peck, a combination she used even until the end of the Grand Festival. She later followed with simple spinning, a technique her Piplup and Buneary practiced for a while in Oreburgh City. The way it was used was adapted by Ash in his first Gym battle in Sinnoh.
Later on, Dawn began with more complex combinations, such as Flame Ice and Ice Chandelier, moves that were both powerful and beautiful. After a lot of practice, Dawn's Pokémon were able to master these combinations in battle. Coincidentally, both of these were used to defeat Ursula.
Dawn in her winter clothes
Dawn is much more different than any of Ash's other friends. Dawn has more concern about her appearance, as she will not show herself to Ash or Brock until she feels that her appearance is perfect. That may be a reason why she decides to sleep inside a tent while the others sleep outside. However, she has recently been seen sleeping outside with the others, such as in Tears for Fears!. Every time she's going to be on camera, she needs to take a moment to brush her hair before going on, such as in Last Call, First Round!.
In The Bells Are Singing!, Dawn revealed that she was the one to design Buneary's vest (but also admitted that her mother was the one to sew it). In Arriving in Style!, she demonstrated her talent for designing again, sketching many different dresses for the Hearthome Collection, though she rejected all of them.
Since obtaining her first Pokémon, the Pokémon that Dawn acquire tend to be cute and small like her starter, Piplup.
Because of her lack of experience, she may have some rough spots on how to deal with her Pokémon properly, as seen when she bickers with Piplup sometimes. This lack of experience also reflects with her Pachirisu and Mamoswine. Pachirisu occasionally hits unwanted targets with its Discharge while Mamoswine may easily be angered and disobey Dawn in the process. Despite all these issues she faces some times, Dawn still deeply cares for all her Pokémon, especially her starter, Piplup.
As a Coordinator who is willing to win the Grand Festival, Dawn has trained her Pokémon in the art of Appeals, as well as battles. She is able to fully utilize her Pokémon's capabilities. A commonly-seen example would be her Buneary's capability to use Ice Beam, which was used in various ways in the Contests Dawn participated in. She was also able to use her Togekiss in the finals of the Grand Festival to help her almost defeat Zoey, despite the lack of experience with it when compared to her other Pokémon, most especially Piplup, who was also used in the finals.
This listing is of Dawn's Pokémon as of the most recent Japanese episode:
This section is for the Pokémon that Dawn has in her current party.
This section is for Pokémon that Dawn still owns but were given to another Trainer to take care of.
This section is for Pokémon that Dawn traded away.
This section is for Pokémon that Dawn temporarily used. Most of them are rental and belong to another Trainer.
In the manga
Dawn, Ash, and Brock in the manga
Dawn appears in the manga adaptations of The Rise of Darkrai, Giratina and the Sky Warrior, Arceus and the Jewel of Life, and Zoroark: Master of Illusions.
In the TCG
This listing is of cards mentioning or featuring Dawn or her Pokémon in the Pokémon Trading Card Game.
- On the Pokémon Learning League website, her clothing has been altered so that her white undershirt has sleeves and she is wearing black stockings or tights.
- Dawn's Japanese name is Hikari, and her rival's is Nozomi. The Hikari and the Nozomi are two Shinkansen "bullet train" lines. The Nozomi is faster than the Hikari, possibly symbolizing that Zoey is farther along in her coordinating skills than Dawn. It should also be noted that they go in opposite directions.
- All of Dawn's Normal-type Pokémon are female.
| From 光, light.
|| May be a reference to Hikari, as dawn is essentially the day's first light.
|| Literally means dawn.
|| A reference to lux lucid, Latin for light.
|| From luce, Italian for light.
|| Maya can be a reference to the Maya civilization, who worshipped sun.
|| 나빛나 Na Bit-Na
|| When read as a sentence, it means I shine.
| Chinese (Mandarin)
|| 小光 Xiǎo Guāng
|| From 光 hikari, light. Can be taken as "young light".
|| 小光* Síu Gwōng
| From 光 hikari.
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