Dawn (anime)

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ヒカリ Hikari
Art from Diamond/Pearl anime
Age 10 (as of debut)
Gender Female
Eye color Blue
Hair color Blue
Hometown Twinleaf Town
Region Sinnoh
Relatives Johanna (mother)
Trainer class Coordinator
Game counterpart Dawn
Anime debut Following a Maiden's Voyage!
English voice actor Emily Jenness
Japanese voice actor Megumi Toyoguchi

Dawn (Japanese: ヒカリ Hikari) is a ten-year-old girl traveling through Sinnoh with Ash and Brock. Her goal is to become a great Pokémon Coordinator like her mother, Johanna. Her first Pokémon is a Piplup that she received from Professor Rowan in the first Diamond & Pearl episode. She is voiced by 豊口めぐみ Megumi Toyoguchi in the Japanese version, Emily Jenness in the English dub, by Fernanda Bulara in the Brazilian dub, and by Gaby Ugarte in the Latin American Spanish dub.


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, she often says, "Daijōbu!" Although not consistently translated in the English dub at first, she began to regularly use "No need to worry!". In a stark contrast to May's inexperience and self-doubt at the start of the Advanced Generation series, Dawn is perhaps overly confident and assured in her own strength in the beginning. Dawn is one of Ash's friends to get the most character development.

Dawn with her Pokétch

She began her journey with her Piplup and 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 lost her first Contest in Arrival of a Rival and ended up getting support from her mother who told her to rely on her friends. Eventually, in her second official contest, Dawn narrowly beat Kenny to gain her first ribbon.

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 drop out of a contest by losing the appeal round. In Team Shocker!, she lost the Appeal Round for second time in a row. This was a big turn around in Dawn's character. Previously, she had only occasionally been seen training for contests. After this 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 began to become 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 newfound 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 DP092. Due to her hard work, she managed to win the contest in DP095. In DP106, she was shown to be overconfident. Her Mamoswine began to disobey her after evolving, despite this, she still thought that she can train it well. The same thing had never happened to Ash when his Charizard disobeyed him.

She has two childhood friends that appeared in the anime, Kenny and Leona, both of whom call her sometimes Dee Dee (Japanese: ピカリ Pikari). Dawn has prevented them from telling Ash and Brock about the reason why she has this nickname. She seems to be closer to Leona than to Kenny. Kenny functions as a rival for Dawn alongside Zoey. Zoey also functions as a semi-mentor to Dawn and helped her recover from her second loss. All three are competing for their first time in the regional contests. Leona however, challenges Gyms. She also seemed to be childhood friends with Jun when she was little, and was very upset that he didn't remember who she was.

Dawn has more concern about her appearance than Ash's other female friends. 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. 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.

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 over 30 episodes after it happened. Johanna gave Dawn one of her old ribbons from her days as a coordinator as a gift for luck. She also had a large suitcase full of dresses, but her mother made her leave it at home due to its impracticality. She also has a Contest Pass for the Sinnoh region.

Like May, she has her own ending theme song, titled 君のそばで 〜ヒカリのテーマ〜 By Your Side ~Hikari's Theme~. It is the first ending of the Diamond & Pearl anime. The song is performed by グリン Grin.


Since starting her journey, The Pokémon that Dawn tends to acquire tend to be much like her starter, Piplup: They are cute and appear to belong to the Ground Egg Group. However, due to still being a rookie, she may have some rough spots on how to deal with her Pokémon properly. However, she still deeply cares for all her Pokémon, especially Piplup. All of them seem to adore her poffins, especially Mamoswine.

This listing is of Dawn's Pokémon as of the most recent Japanese episode:

On hand

190 f.png424 f.png
Aipom → Ambipom
Swinub → Piloswine → Mamoswine


(traded to Ash for Aipom)


(trained during Camping It Up!)
(used in the triathlon in DP091)

Sharpedo (used in the triathlon in DP091)


Sinnoh ribbons



  • Out of all of Ash's friends, Dawn is the only one so far to have her debut episode dedicated completely to herself. Unlike other debut episodes, Ash didn't even appear until the last 30 seconds.
  • May and Misty were girls who traveled before Dawn's appearance with Ash Ketchum. Both of them have Japanese names including the katakana ka and dub names starting with M, so some fans believed Dawn would as well have a dub name starting with M, because she had カ in her name. However, this was revealed to be false when her English name was revealed to be Dawn, which appears to reference Pokémon Diamond, as Paul references Pokémon Pearl. "Dawn" may also be a reference to "Hikari," which means "light"--dawn is essentially the day's first light.
  • She is the only female main character that doesn't have a sibling.
  • Unlike Ash's other friends, Dawn has already crossed a lot of boundaries that have previously only been held by Ash.
  • Dawn is the second Coordinator that is voiced by Megumi Toyoguchi in Japanese, the first being Janet.
  • She is one of two of Ash's friends who is not or part of a Gym Leader family. Tracey is probably the other. However, this is only presumed as no information is known about her father or Tracey's family.
  • 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 is the first Pokémon Trainer introduced as a novice to not have a Template:Type2 Pokémon be her first evolution, as Ash's first evolving Pokémon was Caterpie, and May's was Wurmple. Dawn's first evolving Pokémon was Aipom.
    • The only Pokémon on Dawn's team that have evolved so far are part of a Generation II evolution family: her Generation IV Pokémon have not evolved at all.
  • She is the only main character aside from Ash to challenge an official Pokémon Gym, and the first of Ash's friends to compete in an official Gym Battle in the main series since Showdown at Pewter City and The Water Flowers of Cerulean City, where Brock battled Ash and Misty battled Ash respectively.
    • Counting side-stories, the last time anyone besides Ash or his rivals were shown challenging a Gym Leader would be The Blue Badge of Courage, where Sakura fought Misty.
      • Counting Gym Leaders of any sort (meaning, regardless of whether it was an official Gym leader or an unofficial one), Dawn's only the second main character other than Ash to do this, as Misty challenged Dorian in Just Add Water, long before Dawn ever appeared.
  • Every Pokémon Dawn has captured or received has been in the Ground egg group.
  • When Dawn had Buizel, she had two Template:Type2s (the other being Piplup), while afterward, with Ambipom, she has two Template:Type2s (the other being Buneary). These relate to Ash's previous two female traveling partners, as Misty is a Gym Leader who specializes in Water-types, while May's father Norman is a Gym Leader that specializes in Normal-types.
  • All of Dawn's Pokémon have used the Heart Seal on their Ball Capsules.
  • Dawn's Latin American Spanish dub actress, Gaby Ugarte, is the sister of Xóchitl Ugarte, Misty's Latin American Spanish voice actress. Interestingly, the two characters haven't met yet.
  • Discounting Max, Dawn is the only one of Ash's friends who hasn't yet owned a Generation I Pokémon and one of only two who hasn't yet owned a Generation III Pokémon. The other is Tracey (though he did have an egg that he gave away that would later hatch into a Generation III Pokémon). In the Summer School arc, however, she rents a Grimer, Dodrio, and a Sharpedo.
  • Dawn is the second female traveling companion to battle in the third Gym of a region. She battled Maylene, the Veilstone Gym leader herself, while her predecessor, May, battled the Mauville Gym Leader Wattson's assistant, Watt.
  • Dawn is, as of the most recent episode, the only main protagonist (besides Max, who is too young) who hasn't owned a Flying-type Pokémon.
  • Dawn's contest cry is "Spotlight!" (US), or "Charm up!" (Japan).
  • 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 that Dawn. It should also be noted that they go the opposite direction.
  • Most of all the Pokémon that are, or have been, in Dawn's ownership are or were similar to the Pokémon of other main characters:
    • Just like Ash's Pikachu, her Piplup wasn't ready to obey her when they first met. Eventually, they became fast friends after Pikachu and Piplup saved their respective trainers from an attacking group of Pokémon; Pikachu saved Ash from a flock of Spearow while Piplup saved Dawn from a swarm of Ariados. Also, just like Pikachu, Piplup too stays out of its Poké Ball most of the time.
    • Buneary is similar to Misty's Corsola, due to Dawn and Misty failing multiple times to catch the respective Pokémon before finally catching them.
    • Pachirisu is similar to May's Skitty, due to their hyperactive personalities, and both were the third Pokémon under their respective Trainer's ownerships.
    • Buizel, when he was Dawn's, is similar to Ash's Sceptile, due to both of them being loners and prime battlers.
    • Mamoswine, when it was a Swinub, was similar to May's Munchlax due to their appetites and affections to their Trainers, but as a Mamoswine, it is similar to Ash's Charizard as they are both fully-evolved Pokémon and have both refused to obey their trainers and even go as far as to attack them.
  • Aside from her Pachirisu, all of her Pokémon can have Double Hit legitimately in the games.


Language Name Origin
Japanese ヒカリ Hikari From 光, light.
English Dawn May be a reference to Hikari, as dawn is essentially the day's first light.
French Aurore Literally means dawn.
German Lucia A reference to lux lucid, Latin for light.
Italian Lucinda From luce, Italian for light.
Spanish Maya This may be from a gag that the Spanish dubbers did in switching Dawn's and May's names around. Notice Dawn's Spanish name, Maya, is closer to May, while May's Spanish name is Aura, which translates into "dawn."
Korean 나빛나 Na Bit-Na When read as a sentence, it means I shine.
Chinese (Taiwan) 小光 Xiǎo Guāng From 光 hikari, light. Literally "small light".

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Protagonists Ash KetchumPikachuMistyTogeticBrockTracey SketchitMayMaxDawnPiplupIrisAxewCilanSerenaClemontBonnieDedenneLanaKiaweLillieSophoclesMallowRotom Pokédex
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Antagonists JessieJamesMeowthWobbuffetGiovanniButchCassidyDr. NambaMatoriPierceDr. ZagerGozuTabithaMaxieShellyArchieHunter JSaturnCyrusMarsJupiterCharonColressAldithGhetsisBarretMalamarLysandreMableCelosiaAlianaXerosicBryonyTuppZippRappPlumeriaGuzmaViren
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Relatives Delia KetchumDaisyVioletLilyJames's parentsNanny and Pop-PopFlintLolaForrestBrock's siblingsNormanCarolineJohannaChiliCressGraceMeyerLana's fatherLana's motherHarper and SarahRangoSimaMimoKiawe's grandfatherMohnLusamineGladionSophocles's parentsMolayneAbeMallow's motherUlu
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