The Pokémon anime debuted in Japan back in 1997, following the adventures of ten-year-old Ash, Pikachu, and their friends. That was nearly twenty years ago. Ash might still be 10, but he sure has changed.
Note: This article was originally published on February 8, 2016. It has since been updated.
That shouldn’t come as a surprise, because Pikachu has changed over the years, too. This is only natural for all animated and drawn characters, and there are countless examples of similar evolutions over the years.
But how has Ash changed?
His outfits, most notably his hats, have changed from series to series, but one of the most subtle changes has been the length of Ash’s legs. The character has gotten leaner and taller, most noticeably for Pokémon XY in 2013.
Here are the major iterations side-by-side.
Still can’t see it? Here are images from Pokémon Black & White and XY compared.
However, probably the biggest change was Ash’s eye color back in 2010 when the series Pokémon: Black & White featured Ash with brown eyes instead of black ones. In the above image, you can see how these images stack up.
I’ve always thought it was a shame they didn’t keep his eyes black for Black & White. Thematically, it works so well!
There have also been other subtle tweaks to his appearance over the years.
The addition of something very important.
You know, fingernails.
The character’s eyes (the pupil and the iris shape, really) have changed once again with the most recent anime Pokémon XYZ.
Over time, these changes add up.
But they haven’t stopped, with his biggest change coming in the Sun Moon anime.
In this summer’s new Pokémon anime feature film, the character’s design has reverted back to a more “traditional” look. Even then, Ash has still changed.
Via website Pokemon Matome Master, you can see how the I Choose You! version of Ash compares to his other incarnations.
Which one is your favorite?
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