From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
- Tracey redirects here. For the book author, see Tracey West.
Tracey Sketchit (Japanese: ケンジ Kenji) is a Pokémon watcher and a former traveling companion of Ash from the Orange Islands saga of the anime.
Tracey first appeared in The Lost Lapras when he came upon Ash getting ready to battle three other Trainers. He was impressed by the condition of Ash's Pikachu and decided to take notes. He got to know Ash and Misty better after he helped them save an injured Lapras. After hearing that Ash and Misty knew Professor Oak, his hero, Tracey decided to invite himself to the group.
Tracey displayed some of his Pokémon watching skills in In The Pink, where he took some time to observe a pink Rhyhorn. He was able to watch it and sketch it without it noticing him at all, until Ash approached it.
In Tracey Gets Bugged, he expressed that his favorite type of Pokémon was Bug-type Pokémon, much to Misty's dislike. During their time on Murcott Island, the group came upon an elderly and injured Scyther. Tracey ended up building a strong bond with Scyther and was able to defeat Team Rocket. In the end, Tracey decided to add Scyther to his team.
Tracey in his debut appearance
While on their way to Pummelo Stadium, Tracey got to meet one of his idols, Dr. Quackenpoker, a Pokémon watcher who specialized in researching Magikarp. Tracey picked up a few pointers from the older watcher and got to count how many Magikarp evolved into Gyarados.
Tracey finally got to meet Professor Oak in person in A Tent Situation. He was incredibly nervous when he turned over his drawings to him, knowing that a watcher's dream was to have their drawings reviewed by Professor Oak. By the next episode, he decides to stay in Pallet Town and become Professor Oak's assistant. Later, he single handedly saves Ash's Pikachu from being stolen by Team Rocket using Scyther and Marill.
He made a brief cameo appearances in both Spell of the Unown and Celebi: Voice of the Forest. During the credits of the latter, he is shown discovering Sam's sketchbooks and views the drawing he made of Celebi and Pikachu.
During his time at Professor Oak's laboratory, Tracey hasn't had that many appearances. He does various chores around the lab such as feeding the Pokémon and cleaning. He has befriended many of the Pokémon that reside at the lab, in particular Ash's Bulbasaur. He helps take care of the Pokémon that Ash leaves at the lab and sometimes has them help him with chores.
Tracey was given a few major roles in some of the Pokémon Chronicles. In Showdown and the Oak Corral, he helps protect the laboratory from Butch and Cassidy. Later in Oaknapped, he is assisted by Ritchie to help locate Professor Oak after he goes missing after a visit to a television station.
Prior to the episode The Scheme Team, Tracey's Marill produced an Egg. Tracey gave the Egg to Misty which later hatched into an Azurill. In The Right Place and The Right Mime, he tagged teamed with Misty using the parent and child Pokémon to fire a double Water Gun attack at Team Rocket.
Tracey has not had any full appearances since Home is Where the Start Is!. However, he has made a brief cameo in Following a Maiden's Voyage! and was mentioned by Professor Oak in Crisis from the Underground Up! when Ash called the lab from Nimbasa City.
Tracey Sketchit's drawing of a Seaking.
In general, Tracey is a gentle person, and has a hard time saying no to anyone, especially to girls. In A Date With Delcatty, he took care of Misty's chores and helped Daisy with various tasks around the Cerulean Gym.
Tracey is a lot like Brock in many aspects. Like Brock, Tracey does have a very broad knowledge about Pokémon. This has helped him and his friends in their journey many times along the way. Also, similarly to Brock, he seems to have a soft spot for pretty girls, but to a much less extreme degree. Unlike Brock, Tracey seems to have some standards as he tends to be more drawn towards women who exhibit strength and courage rather than just any pretty girl he sees. Also, he is more self-conscious and doesn't go overboard about them as Brock does. He expresses his interest by simply drawing them.
There have been a rare incidents where Tracey was seen losing his temper. In The Lost Lapras, Misty comments that she doesn't know how famous Professor Oak is and Tracey barks back at her, saying that Professor Oak is the most respected researcher on the entire planet. Another time this happened was in Journey to the Starting Line when a boy named Gilbert said that he wouldn't want to have the annoyance of raising a Pokémon himself. Angered, Tracey yelled at him saying that training Pokémon was the most important part of being a Pokémon Trainer.
Like Tracey has admiration for Professor Oak, Max seems to have an admiration for him. He complimented Tracey on his artwork and told him how lucky he was to be working with Professor Oak, and even wished that he could draw Pokémon one day.
Tracey's Pokémon Watching usually involves him observing a Pokémon and sketching it. He has special binoculars that allow him to take measurements of a Pokémon that is far away. He also seems to have super-human eyesight. In The Joy of Pokémon he was able to tell that the person paddling past them at a high speed was Nurse Joy. He was also able to tell that her arms were wider than other Nurse Joys after seeing her for only a split second.
At times when Tracey has trouble in finding a certain Pokémon, he calls on the help of his own Pokémon. His Venonat has radar-like eyes that can track a Pokémon from the farthest of distances. In times where a Pokémon can't be seen, he uses his Marill who has super hearing.
Tracey has some tricks of the trade when it comes to Pokémon watching. To avoid being detected by the Pokémon he's observing, he always makes sure that he approaches it from downwind to avoid his scent being picked up by his subject, and changes his breathing rhythm to match the Pokémon's so that he will not be heard.
He also has the unique ability to know what move a Pokémon is going to use just by the way it moves about. This was seen when he knew James's Victreebel was going to use Razor Leaf while battling with his Scyther in Tracey Gets Bugged.
Tracey does not appear to train his Pokémon for competitions, however, they are still important in his fieldwork. His Marill has excellent hearing and is able to detect faint sounds, while Venonat has radar-like eyes that are usually able to locate hidden Pokémon. His Scyther is his only Pokémon used solely for battling.
| Tracey was seen riding a Dodrio in a flashback while Pokémon watching. However, it is unknown whether Dodrio belonged to him or if it was simply borrowed.
|| The Lost Lapras
- Tracey is the only one of Ash's friends with an officially revealed last name.
- Tracey is the only main protagonist who has not had their hometown revealed.
- Though most of the main characters have carried a Pokémon Egg with them, some multiple times, Tracey is the only main character whose Pokémon actually produced an Egg.
- If the Egg of Misty's Azurill does not count, Tracey has only owned Pokémon from the first two generations.
- In the Japanese version of the anime, Tracey's sketchbook has a Poké Ball symbol on the bottom right-hand corner and some writing in the top left-hand corner. This is painted out in the dub.
- None of Tracey's Pokémon know moves introduced later than Generation I.
- Tracey has spent the least amount of episodes traveling with Ash out of all his traveling companions, accompanying him only through the Orange Islands arc (EP084-EP116).
- Tracey is the only main male protagonist who has not had any relatives revealed.
- Tracey is the first and so far the only companion not to be based on an in-game Trainer.
Interview with Hidaka about Tracey's creation
There had been some debate between members of the fanbase in regards to why Tracey was created, as well as why he replaced Brock, and vice versa. In an interview with former Pokémon anime director and storyboard artist Masamitsu Hidaka, he stated his own reason why Tracey was created and why he replaced Brock. He (or, rather his translator) revealed that the true reason they replaced Brock is because, once they realized Pokémon was going to go global, there was a chance that Americans, if not anyone else outside of Japan, would view Brock as a racist stereotype because of his eyes (even though there wasn't an actual complaint yet). So they created a "tall, anglo-saxon looking person to be on the safe side". They later replaced him with Brock again once they realized that no one really cared as to what Brock looks like, and actually enjoyed his character.
However, this was only stated by Hidaka and not by any other staff member.
|| ケンジ Kenji
|| Can be taken from ケン ken, to see. May also be derived from Ken Sugimori. Kenji can also mean "prosecutor".
|English, German, Spanish
|| Tracey Sketchit
|| From trace. Sketchit derives from "sketch it".
|| Jacky Léon
|| 관철 Gwancheol
|| Derived from 관찰 (觀察) gwanchal, watcher.
|| 小建 Xiǎo Jiàn
|| May be derived from 杉森建, Ken Sugimori. In addition, 建 (to build/establish) is a homophone to 見 jiàn, to see.
|| 小建 Síu Gin
|| Same as Mandarin name.
|| เคนจิ Kenji
|| Same as his Japanese name.