[Image: YZ13007477]

In the latest episode of Pokémon XYZ, Ash faced off against Alain for the Kalos League Championship. Since Ash has been doing so well this season and since he’s become somewhat of a cooler character, victory seemed possible.

[Note: This article has spoilers]

This was Ash’s big chance to win an official Pokémon League. Here is how that went down.

Dammit, Ash.

Sure, you could make the argument that his loss was to easily move into the next story arc, but I’ll make the argument that Ash is a loser and doomed to lose forever and ever.


He was a good sport, sure, and all the other characters were proud of him for doing his best.

Ash was so cheerful after his loss (Serena even said that he smiled!), that it was hard to identify with him as a human being. This is why Ash loses and will never win. He seems perfectly content with defeat, and everyone close to him does, too. They are his enablers, and he needs to get far, far away from them.


Part of the appeal for some children could be that Ash isn’t the best, and the show is probably trying to teach lessons about being a sore loser. Okay, fine. Part of the point of having Ash constantly lose is that it’s easy for kids to plug into the show whenever. This is Ash, a good kid, and he always loses.


But at this point, the entire Pokémon animated franchise has become a sadistic and defeatist odyssey. Watching him compete against other trainers is the anime equivalent of Sisyphus. This has been going on for nearly two decades, so can’t he win an official league just once?


At this point, I think the only time Ash will ever win an official Pokémon League is when the anime is finally going off the air. (Sometime before that or soon after, he’ll probably find his father, too.)

With the way generation after generation of children fall in love with Pokémon, the chances of it going off the air seem even more slim than the odds of Ash winning a League. I don’t see either happening anytime soon.

There is one thing that will always be true:

Gary was so right.

Kotaku East is your slice of Asian internet culture, bringing you the latest talking points from Japan, Korea, China and beyond. Tune in every morning from 4am to 8am.