Pokémon in Italy

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Pokémon in Italy
Pokémon logo English.png
Italy Flag.png
Flag of Italy
Language Italian
Continent Europe
Original anime airdates
EP001 January 10, 2000
June 30, 2014
AG001 March 24/25, 2004
DP001 September 17/18, 2007
BW001 February 13, 2011
May 30, 2011
XY001 October 19, 2013
April 14, 2014
SM001 November 19, 2016
April 29, 2017
JN001 August 29, 2020
HZ001 February 27, 2024

The Pokémon franchise first reached Italy on October 5, 1999 with the release of Pokémon Rosso e Blu.

Pokémon video games

All Pokémon video games of the main series have always been sold in Italy and translated in Italian. The Generation I games and its spin-offs were distributed in that region by GiG until 1999 when distribution changed to Giochi Preziosi. The company would release the Generation II games and its spin-offs in that region. By 2002, Nintendo started their own branch in Italy, officially breaking up with Giochi Preziosi. Pokémon events are also released for Italian gamers as well.

Game Date
Pokémon Versione Rossa e Pokémon Versione Blu October 5, 1999
Pokémon Versione Gialla: Speciale Edizione Pikachu July 7, 2000
Pokémon Versione Oro e Pokémon Versione Argento April 6, 2001
Pokémon Versione Cristallo November 2, 2001
Pokémon Versione Rubino e Pokémon Versione Zaffiro July 25, 2003
Pokémon Versione Rosso Fuoco e Versione Verde Foglia October 1, 2004
Pokémon Versione Smeraldo October 21, 2005
Pokémon Versione Diamante e Pokémon Versione Perla July 27, 2007
Pokémon Versione Platino May 22, 2009
Pokémon Versione Oro HeartGold e Pokémon Versione Argento SoulSilver March 26, 2010
Pokémon Versione Nera e Pokémon Versione Bianca March 4, 2011
Pokémon Versione Nera 2 e Pokémon Versione Bianca 2 October 12, 2012
Pokémon X e Pokémon Y October 12, 2013
Pokémon Rubino Omega e Pokémon Zaffiro Alpha November 28, 2014
Pokémon Sole e Pokémon Luna November 23, 2016
Pokémon Ultrasole e Pokémon Ultraluna November 17, 2017
Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! e Let's Go, Eevee! November 16, 2018
Pokémon Spada e Scudo November 15, 2019
Pokémon Diamante Lucente e Pokémon Perla Splendente November 19, 2021
Leggende Pokémon: Arceus January 28, 2022
Pokémon Scarlatto e Pokémon Violetto November 18, 2022

Pokémon anime

Italia 1

Italia 1 logo

On January 10, 2000, Italia 1 (Italia Uno), a commercial Italian TV channel owned by Mediaset, started airing the Pokémon anime from Mondays to Fridays every afternoon, around 5:00 P.M. The series that year was successful in Italy and it was also broadcast at prime time on Saturdays. From the fourth season on, however, Pokémon lost more and more Italian fans. On Christmas 2001, it was even suspended for one year, possibly for dub problems, and when it started again at the end of 2002, its popularity was even lower.

In 2003, Pokémon: Master Quest began around 4 P.M. With this fifth series, Italia 1 chose to divide the episodes into two halves for the premiere, creating, in this way, a broadcast of two 10-minute episodes each from Monday through Friday. However, when the episodes were re-aired, they were transmitted fully. Nevertheless, Pokémon started being broadcast later and later (Pokémon: Advanced at 4:30 P.M., Pokémon: Advanced Challenge at 5:00 P.M.) until the eighth season was broadcast at 6:00 P.M., always for ten minutes on February 2006. After a few months, Pokémon was moved to Saturdays and Sundays, imitating the TV schedule of Kids' WB!. The main problem facing this was that Italian children attend school on Saturdays. Due to this choice, some Italian Pokémon sites chose to make together a petition against Italia 1. Perhaps because of this petition or maybe due to the lower audience, Pokémon returned in the afternoon at 5:15 P.M.

With the beginning of Pokémon Chronicles, however, the show was broadcast once again during the weekend, although it was broadcast later in the morning. The same happened for Pokémon: Battle Frontier, which was not only was transmitted in the weekends, but also for 10 minutes only. In Summer 2007, Pokémon landed every morning at 8:30 A.M. In September 2007, Italia 1 decided on give another chance to the show and, exploiting the success of the new Generation IV games, Pokémon came back in the afternoon with the new series, Pokémon: Diamante e Perla. The first episodes were successful, similar to the ones of the first seasons, but after a few episodes the ratings decreased and so in January 2008 "Diamante e Perla" went back to the weekend (also because the series was going too much near the U.S. airings).

After the tenth season, Mediaset decided not to renew their contract for the series. However, various Mediaset channels kept on re-airing the first 10 seasons until mid-2013, when the rights for them finally expired.


Boing logo used until 2016

Like most rerunning cartoon series and movies coming from Italia 1, the Pokémon anime has also been aired by Boing, a digital television network broadcast via DTT technology, owned by Boing S.p.A., a joint-venture of RTI/Mediaset and Warner Bros. Discovery EMEA. Boing aired the first ten seasons, and utilized the Italian opening themes and endings that Italia 1 used, due to both networks being part of RTI/Mediaset.

Pokémon Horizons: The Series started airing on Boing and Boing Plus on February 27, 2024, marking the return of the Pokémon anime on the channel after more than a decade.


The Pokémon anime has also reran on Hiro, a short-lived Mediaset network that broadcasts Anime. The channel launched in 2008 and closed in August 2011.

Jetix/Disney XD

After Mediaset's decision not to renew the rights for the series, Jetix Europe obtained the rights for broadcasting the eleventh season in Italy, wich began on March 30, 2009. Pokémon Mystery Dungeon: Explorers of Time & Darkness, the only Mystery Dungeon special to ever be dubbed in Italian, had previously aired in July 2008.

Jetix changed its name to Disney XD in September, and became the main network to premiere the episodes in Italy, but sometimes alternating with K2 (for example, the last episodes of the fourteenth season). From 2012 onward, K2 always premiered the episodes (it also happened for the XY sneak peek of October 19th, two days after the Japanese airing), with Disney XD airing them after some months.

Disney XD continued to air the anime up until the seventeenth season.

Toon Disney

The fourteenth season was also broadcast on Toon Disney in 2011 until the channel's closure shortly afterward.


K2 logo used since 2013

K2 (Kappadue) is a free-to-air network formerly owned by Jetix Europe before being transitioned over to Switchover Media, and later Discovery Italia/Warner Bros. Discovery Italia. The Pokémon anime began airing on K2 in 2009, starting with Battle Dimension.

Since 2009[1], a re-dub of the first three seasons had been in the works and finally premiered on K2 in 2014 following the expiration of Mediaset's license. The new dub was to be more faithful to the English one and to the official Italian names for moves and cities used in the games. The original English Pokémon themes and texts (only for the "To be continued" and the title of the first about 20 episodes of Indigo League) were dubbed and translated in Italian as well. Since June 30 to August 4, 2014 the first season was broadcast; the second has been skipped for unspecified reasons and the third one has been aired since August 5 to September 7, 2014. The second season eventually aired on K2 in 2016 using the original RTI/Mediaset dub, which is to this day the version employed on official releases for the first 49 episodes of Pokémon: Adventures in the Orange Islands (the remaining 11 episodes of the Orange League arc had been redubbed as part of the third season).

The first two episodes of Pokémon the Series: XY premiered on K2 on October 19, 2013 as a sneak peek and premiered fully on April 23, 2014.

Pokémon the Series: XY - Kalos Quest premiered on K2 on April 25, 2015; Pokémon the Series: XYZ premiered on May 7, 2016 on the same channel, although the first two episodes premiered on the official Pokémon site on May 3.

Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon premiered on K2 on November 19, 2016 as a sneak peek, with the season airing starting on April 29, 2017. Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon—Ultra Adventures aired on K2 on May 5, 2018, followed by Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon – Ultra Legends on May 4, 2019.

The broadcast of the twenty-third season, Pokémon Journeys: The Series, started on August 29, 2020. Both Pokémon Master Journeys: The Series and Pokémon Ultimate Journeys: The Series began broadcasting with the first two episodes airing on K2, starting on September 11, 2021 and September 10, 2022, respectively. Ultimate Journeys was eventually revealed to be the final season to air on the channel, as in December 2023 it was announced that Pokémon Horizons: The Series would debut on Boing in 2024[2] in place of the originally-announced K2[3].

Cartoon Network

The twentieth season was also broadcast on Cartoon Network from March 2024.

Digital distribution

Many episodes of the anime are available on Netflix, Prime Video, Mediaset Infinity, the official Boing App, and have also been previously available on Pokémon TV, the Nintendo Anime Channel for Nintendo 3DS, Dplay and discovery+. As for the animated miniseries, Pokémon Generations, Pokémon Evolutions, POKÉTOON, Pokémon: Path to the Peak, Pokémon: Paldean Winds (dubbed in Italian), Pokémon: Twilight Wings and Pokémon: Hisuian Snow (only in English with subtitles) are available on the official Italian Pokémon channel. Pokémon: The Arceus Chronicles and Pokémon Concierge are included in Netflix's library, while Pokémon Origins and the Mega Evolution Specials are not currently available on any platform.

Pokémon movies

All of the Pokémon movies have been released in Italy so far. On February 28, March 6 and 13 2004, the first three movies were supposed to be broadcast, for the first time on TV, on Italy 1 in prime time. However, due to the low audience, only the first two movies aired. One year later, finally, the third one was broadcast, this time on Sunday afternoon. After almost four-and-a-half years without any movie release (except for the events' cinema projections of the eight and tenth movies), the movies started to air again in 2009: the eight and the ninth were aired on Hiro (respectively on January and November 2009), Destiny Deoxys was aired for the first time on Boing in July 2010, and The Rise of Darkrai premiered on July 2011 via online broadcast on the official site; most recent movies (from the eleventh onward) regularly air on Disney XD and K2 every year, following the seasons' path.

Only the last two movies of Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire haven't been released in DVD yet, while during 2011, the four films of Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl were released from Universal Pictures; Miramax released the first two Advanced Generation movies in 2012, along with Universal's release of the fourteenth (Universal Pictures released the new movies every year). The sixth movie aired for the first time on March 16, 2012 on Sky Cinema Family (also in 720p-HD version), becoming the "Italian" movie with the longest gap from the Japanese and American releases (almost eight years from the American release, eight-and-a-half years from the Japanese).

On February 21, 2015, the seventeenth movie (the last one to also get a DVD release) premiered in the Italian cinemas with its special Pikachu episode, being the first Pokémon movie to be shown in cinema since almost fourteen years. Hoopa and the Clash of Ages was first released in January 2016 on iTunes, then premiered in TV (K2) on May 2. Volcanion and the Mechanical Marvel aired for the first time on K2 on November 19, 2016; I Choose You! premiered in cinemas on November 6, 2017, while The Power of Us was released on December 11, 2018 on iTunes and Google Play. Mewtwo Strikes Back—Evolution and Secrets of the Jungle were distributed by Netflix, debuting on the platform respectively on February 27, 2020 and October 8, 2021.


For more information, see Category:Italian songs.

Traditionally, Mediaset, since its origins, has always created openings for cartoons and anime, some independent from the Japanese and North American opening themes. For Pokémon, nine themes have been made (for the first ten seasons and for Pokémon Chronicles). These Italian openings were not necessarily used for the same number of episodes as their counterparts in the English dub, with Pokémon: Beyond the Skies of the Adventure for example being directly introduced in the first episode of what in Italy became its eponymous season. Pokémon: Advanced and Pokémon: Advanced Challenge later shared the same opening, as did Pokémon: Advanced Battle and Pokémon: Battle Frontier. This makes Italy one of only three known dubs outside of Japan and the United States to create original music for the Pokémon anime, the other two being Greater China and South Korea.

A CD compilation of several of the Italian opening themes, The Master Saga, was released in 2006. Although the Italian dub had its own music, an Italian-language translation of the Pokémon 2.B.A. Master soundtrack was also released, entitled Pokémon: Le Canzoni Autentiche Della Serie TV, including the first Italian opening as a bonus track.

The English theme songs have been regularly translated and adapted for the Italian dub of the anime starting with We Will Be Heroes. Before that, only the first three English opening themes had been adapted in Italian, and exclusively in their movie version. Official Italian versions of the remaining English openings from the first ten seasons were also retroactively produced between 2014 and 2016, with many being shown for the first time on Pokémon TV (some episodes were however uploaded with the English openings and/or endings kept, without having been fixed since) around that time, effectively replacing the previous Italian-exclusive openings.


When the anime was licensed by Mediaset (from the first to the tenth season) the Italian dub was produced by Merak Film.

Studio Asci took over from the eleventh to the fifteenth season, and was also responsible for the re-dubbing of the first three seasons. Starting from the sixteenth season, dubbing passed to SDI Media (now part of Iyuno), which had already cooperated with Studio Asci in previous seasons.

Despite these changes, the role of voice director has almost always been covered by Federico Danti, who also provided the narrator's voice up to the end of Pokémon Journeys: The Series.

Cast and crew

The main role of Ash Ketchum was dubbed by Davide Garbolino. Other minor roles Garbolino had on Pokémon include Jared. Misty, the second main character in the series, has been dubbed by Alessandra Karpoff, who also dubbed Lilian Meridian and Rhonda.

Brock's role was taken by Nicola Bartolini Carrassi (also known as Nicola Ryan Carrassi), the man who brought Pokémon to Italy. He is also a journalist, scriptwriter, anime expert and anchor. Nicola left the cast after the character's temporary departure, and starting with the Johto saga, the role was taken by Luca Bottale.

The Team Rocket trio of Jessie, James, and Meowth has been voiced by Emanuela Pacotto, Simone D'Andrea, and Giuseppe Calvetti (also known as Beppe Calvetti), respectively. Starting with AG041, however, the role of Meowth was passed to Pietro Ubaldi.

May (Vera) was dubbed by Serena Clerici, who also voiced Janina and Verity. May's brother Max was dubbed by Federica Valenti, who also voiced Casey and Melody.

Dawn (Lucinda) was dubbed by Tosawi Piovani in seasons 10 and 11, and their respective movies; she was also the voice of Casey and Marina. After her retirement, the role passed to Ludovica De Caro, who also previously voiced Solana, and later voiced Carlita, Virizion, Viola, Valerie, Risa, Sonia, and Mollie.

Iris was voiced by Francesca Bielli, who had already voiced Maylene and Lyra, while Cilan (Spighetto) was voiced by Davide Albano.

Clemont (Lem) and Bonnie (Clem) were voiced by Simone Lupinacci and Valentina Pallavicino, respectively. Serena was voiced by Deborah Morese.

Lillie (Lylia), Mallow (Ibis), and Lana (Suiren) were respectively dubbed by Giulia Maniglio, Sabrina Bonfitto and Stefania Rusconi. Kiawe (Kawe) was dubbed by Alessandro Capra, who had already provided the voice for N, while Sophocles (Chrys) was dubbed by Patrizia Mottola, who had also been the voice of Ritchie and Sawyer.

Goh was voiced by Richard Benitez, while Chloe (Cloe) was voiced by Valentina Framarin.

Following the cast renewal in Pokémon Horizons: The Series, the roles of the new protagonists Liko and Roy were respectively assigned to Giada Bonanomi, who had previously voiced Hapu, and Elisa Giorgio, the voice of Cynthia in Pokémon Journeys: The Series.

Other notable voice actors in the Italian dub include Riccardo Rovatti as Professor Oak, Patrizio Prata as Tracey Sketchit, Flavio Arras as the Pokédex, Renata Bertolas and Jolanda Granato (plus many others) as Officer Jenny, Laura Brambilla and Tiziana Martello (plus many others) as Nurse Joy, Massimo Di Benedetto as Gary Oak (although he was initially voiced by Nicola Bartolini Carrassi in EP001, and Paolo Sesana voiced him up to his first appearance in Sinnoh), Paul (only for a season, then replaced by Maurizio Merluzzo), Drew and Trip and Stefano Pozzi as Barry, Luke, Cameron and Rotom Pokédex.

In the re-dub of the first three seasons, Benedetta Ponticelli, who also voiced Bianca, provided the voice of Misty (although the role returned to her original voice actress in Pokémon the Series: Sun and Moon); both Brock, Gary Oak and Meowth have been voiced by their current dubbers. Almost every secondary character received a new voice.

Pokémon manga

Cover artwork for volume one of Pokémon

Italy is one of only a handful of countries outside of Japan to publish a translation of the Pokémon Gotta Catch 'Em All manga series. It was released by Play Press Publishing under the title Pokémon.

There is also an Italian version of Pokémon Adventures (Pokémon: Le Grandi Storie a Fumetti). The first ten monthly issues were translated by Planet Manga, a subsidiary of Panini Comics. Planet Manga also translated an Italian version of Magical Pokémon Journey (Il magico viaggio dei Pokémon), though only the first two monthly issues were translated.

In autumn 2013, Italian manga publisher J-POP e GP Manga announced at the Lucca Comics and Games comic book convention that they would be publishing the Black & White arc of the Pokémon Adventures manga in Italian with the title Pokémon Nero e Bianco. This release is based on VIZ Media's mini volumes of the magazine version. The first Italian volume is due to be released on August 27, 2014. In 2016, they also began releasing a new edition of Adventures called Pokémon - La Grande Avventura. the Red, Green & Blue arc and the Yellow arc were released in November 2016, the Gold, Silver & Crystal arc was released in November 2017, the Ruby & Sapphire arc was released in November 2018, and the FireRed & LeafGreen arc and the Emerald arc were released in March 2019.

Pokémon merchandise

The Pokémon merchandising in Italy immediately reached one of its highest points right after the anime started, in January, 2000. Five stickers album were released during the corresponding seasons (from the first to Master Quest). In early 2000s, Pokémon Trading Cards series 1 and series 2 were available, published by Topps. During the Original series' years, several types of merchandising products were released in every way: lots of very popular school equipments, bottle caps featuring the Johto Pokémon (Yoga fruit juices), various types of lollipops and candies, anime VHSs and many others. With the start of the Advanced Generation, Pokémon's popularity in Italy quickly fell; however, a last sticker album featuring the Hoenn Pokédex's Pokémon was released, Pokémon Advanced Action Cards were available in 2005, and various type of new action figures were released (more than in other generations), but didn't have a great success. Diamond and Pearl seemed to have the same destiny, but from Battle Dimension on, with new TV airing times, its popularity raised again: new DP toys were released from Giochi Preziosi S.p.A., the DVDs of the first two seasons were re-released, and minor merchandising such as Easter Eggs were available. From February 2011, with the ending of Sinnoh League Victors, the first Italian Pokémon Official Magazine was released; Pokémon gadgets (action figures and TCG cards) also came back to McDonald's after many years. Pokémon's new popularity is represented by the fact that 7 Pokémon Movies (6-7-10-11-12-13-14) were released in DVD for the first time during the span of only 2 years, 2011 and 2012, after 6 years (2005-2010) without any type of home-video release. Also Movie 4 and 5 have been re-released in 2011.


Notable Italian Pokémon fansites include Pokémon Millennium, Pokémon Times, PokéNext, and Pokémon Central along with its wiki, Pokémon Central Wiki, to which the Johto World site is also affiliated.


Pokémon Day has been celebrated in Italy every year since 2005 until 2014. Pokémon Camp, a tour organized by Nintendo, was held in 2011.


  • The Pokémon Meowth's name was mistakenly translated as simply "Meo" in the first eleven seasons of the anime, and Persian's name was sometimes translated in Italian by error as Persiano. A similar error was made in the 2014 Italian redub of EP006, in which a group of Paras are called parassiti.
  • In the episode EP016 of K2's 2014 redubbing, Squirtle was accidentally dubbed with the sentence Squirtle pronto! which literally means Squirtle ready!.


External links

Related articles

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