From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
Tracey Sketchit (Japanese: ケンジ Kenji) is a Pokémon watcher from the Orange Islands saga of the anime.
Tracey enjoys sketching Pokémon and uses this skill as a Pokémon watcher. He meets Ash and Misty in The Lost Lapras and finds out that they're friends with Professor Oak, his idol. Because of that, he decided to travel with them in order to meet him.
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, Ash Ketchum and Misty in their journey many times along the way. Also like Brock, he seems to have a soft spot for pretty girls, but to a much less extreme degree. Tracey is more self-conscious and doesn't go overboard about them as Brock does. He expresses his interest by simply drawing them.
Since The Rivalry Revival, Tracey lives with Professor Oak in Pallet Town, where he serves as his loyal assistant. He occasionally visits the Cerulean City Gym, either to run an errand for Professor Oak or invited by Misty's older sister, Daisy.
He is very reserved and gentle person and has a hard time saying no to anyone. This is most predominant in his supposed relationship with Daisy, who uses him often to help out with her chores. While taking care of the Pokémon in the Oak Corral Tracey has befriended many of the Pokémon that reside there, particularly Ash's Bulbasaur.
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. Professor Oak even had to step in to calm Tracey down. In Showdown at the Oak Corral, The Magikarp Salesman tries to sell his Magikarp to Tracey, making him angry at the salesman, yelling that Pokémon aren't things to be sold.
Like Tracey has admiration for Professor Oak, Max seemed to have 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 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.
- Egg: The offspring of his Marill. Tracey gave the egg to Misty which later hatched into Azurill.
- Tracey is the only one of Ash's friends with an officially revealed last name. Though some might argue about Misty and Brock's last names, Tracey's name was the only one to be mentioned in the anime.
- Tracey is the only one of Ash's companions and main protagonists in which there is no information about where he's from or who his family is.
- It is thought that his Japanese name, Kenji, is based on the name of Ken Sugimori, the graphics design lead for the Pokémon games. His name also contains ケン ken which can mean "to see" possibly referring to his Pokémon watching.
- 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.
- Tracey is one of two of Ash's friends who is not or part of a Gym Leader family. The other is Dawn. However, this is only a presumption being that his family is a mystery. Another trait he shares with Dawn is that they are only two of Ash's friends who are never revealed to have a sibling.
- Tracey is one of two of Ash's friends whose debut episode didn't really focus around them. The other is Misty.
- Tracey's color scheme changed as of the Advanced Generation series. His hair went from black to green and his skin has become tanner. Also, he appears smaller than he was in the original series.
- Tracey is the only main character who has had no Pokémon evolve.
- If the egg of Misty's Azurill does not count, Tracey has only owned Pokémon from the first two generations.
- Also, if Azurill does not count nor the Dodrio that he may or may not have owned, Tracey is (except Max, for obvious reasons) the only main protagonist to never own a Normal-type Pokémon.
- If one counts Ash's Aipom's appearance in the 9th Movie Half Deck as one of Dawn's Pokémon, Tracey is the only main character of the anime who has had none of his Pokémon make a TCG appearance.
- 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.
- All of Tracey's Pokémon are also owned, or were owned, by Gym Leaders: Venonat (Koga), Marill (Lola), and Scyther (Bugsy).
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 a recent 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 is 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".
|| Tracey Sketchit
|| Sketchit sounds similar to sketch it. Tracey is taken from trace.
|| Jacky Léon
||Derived from 관찰 (觀察) gwanchal, Watcher.
||小建 Xiǎo Jiàn
||建 is from "ken" in 建二 kenji.
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