These are what we call the 'YMMV items.' Things that some people find in this work. We call them 'your mileage might vary' because not everyone sees these things in the same way. This starts discussions in the trope lists, a thing we don't want. Please use the discussion page if you'd like to discuss any of these items.
Charizard, at first, sees Ash as unworthy to lend his strength...good enough. But was it because he's waiting for Ash to better himself as a trainer, or just being a plain old JerkassProud Warrior Race Mon?
Or is it because Ash got Charmander too close to an onrushing wave of water one too many times, threatening its life-giving tail flame in the process, making him run for his life?
Burgundy's interpretation of Cilan may not just be her imagination, as we see him in battle start toying with her needlessly and actually smiling in an sinister fashion.
Is there something about Reggie that makes Paul's Electabuzz afraid of him when the former debuted?
Dawn's mom is often thought of as a pageant mom, conditioning Dawn into contests and making her succeed so she can live through her achievements.
Since not much is known about Trip, it's become a fandom thing to make Trip have hidden depths that was never touched on in the anime. The most common interpretation is that Trip is secretly cute and psycho that is obsessed with the occult (given he has two ghost Pokémon in his party).
Additionally, there are speculations that Trip actually isn't that good with battling and the reason he loses in the first round of most tournaments because he's either letting his ego get to him or he honesty is that weak and given he loses to Ash in the first round of the Unova League makes it seem like Trip isn't up to snuff like the other rivals.
Americans Hate Tingle: After the initial Pokémon craze and the rise of the Periphery Demographic on the Internet, one can easily say that the anime is a more integral and widely-marketed part of the Pokémon franchise in Japan than in the West, where a much larger portion of the marketing and fanbase is based on the games. Of course, prior to 2011, 99% of the non-TCG merchandise found in shops outside of Asia and Japanese-themed shops were based on the anime.
Animation Age Ghetto: Played straight to a frustrating degree, according to most fans. While, like the games, the Pokémon anime has developed a diverse fanbase over time, the writers create the anime solely to tailor to kids, often neglecting elements that would appeal to older fans such as strong story, characters and continuity. Arguably got worse after the death of original showrunner Takeshi Shudo, who, for example, created the first movie to entertain both kids and their parents/guardians (in Japanese, ofcourse) - granted, Shudo's involvement had started to diminish from partway through the Johto arc (10 years before his death), so how much this affected things is uncertain..
Gary for the Kanto league due his early loss on the rock-field and ending up as The Unfought for Ash. Thankfully, the Johto league rival-match made up for it...unless your one of those people who thought Charizard and Snorlax stole all the glory from the rest of Ash's team in this battle.
Kenny for the Sinnoh Grand Festival. He doesn't make it past the starting Appeal Round.
Barry for the Sinnoh league. He was The Unfought for Ash (excluding their regular battles) and lost 3 to 0 in his league-battle against Paul. In his defense though, some say at least Paul's Ursaring should of been defeated here.
Trip in the Unova League. He gets knocked out by Ash in a 1 vs 1 preliminary match!
Bianca and Virgil for the Unova League. It depends on how people judge them as The Unfought towards Ash. Virgil at least went on to win the whole tournament.
Anti-Sue: Cameron. He's stupid enough to make Unova Ash look smart by comparison, is a pretty incompetent battler (sending a Grass/Steel type Ferrothorn against a Fire-type and a Water/Flying type against an Electric-type, for instance) and is generally a complete screwup who doesn't have a clue about anything. All of his wins can be attributed to luck, Plot Armor or his opponent grabbing the Idiot Ball and forgoing a winning move for no reason.
For some peeps, Johto and Sinnoh were too long and took forever to resolve their respective conflicts (each and every one of them).
Inverted (for some) by Kanto (for being comparatively rushed).
Outright averted with the Orange Islands, Hoenn, the Battle Frontier and Unova.
The Decolore Islands, mainly due to it being a Filler Arc and not having a goal besides bringing Ash home. Wheras most of Ash's returns home took about one or two episodes, it took twenty.
Ass Pull: Ash wins alot of battles thanks to this. One particularly infamous example is Thunder Armor, where Pikachu used Thunder on himself and Swellow to overpower Lunatone's and Solrock's defenses. It comes out of nowhere with no real foreshadowing, and the technique is never used again.
Badass Decay: Ash's Buizel ended up noticeably less powerful than he was in his debut.
Turtwig. You know, the tiny turtle that, in his first major battle, was able to beat a dinosaur that's more than four times his size? Just what did the writers do to him?
The writers turned him into a Jobber to make Paul (and by extension, Infernape) look stronger. Torterra was meant to still be considered strong, but beating nobody except Team Rocket seriously weakened his cred. Nice job, writers.
Ash fluctuates between being a Hot-BloodedStrategist and a Rookie Idiot Hero throughout the series. The Hoenn/Frontier Brain seasons was seen as the last point before he gets hit with the reset button. At the start of Diamond and Pearl, he's back to making amatuer mistakes, but by the end of the arc he's once more acting like his former strategist self. Come Best Wishes, Ash goes back to square one again, only this time he got hit with the Idiot Ball even more.
Team Rocket Took a Level in Badass at the start of Best Wishes and kept it up for a long time, culiminating in them helping to thoroughly trounce Team Plasma. Then the "Decolora Adventures" arc began, and they went right back to being the Goldfish Poop Gang.
Ash's female companions too: Misty, May, Dawn, Iris, and Serena.
The Team Rocket trio. Better when they were goofy (pre and post Best Wishes) or serious (Best Wishes)?
Cilan. Either he is a better character than Brock and his strong personality is refreshing, or he's getting too much focus, has gotten as stale as Brock was as a result, and is a Creator's Pet for those who find him and his antics "forced" or "overexposed".
All of Ash's "Tournament Rivals." Each one of them get hatred for being the designated roadblocks from keeping Ash from actually winning a tournament. Harrison and Tyson tend to get off easier than most due to giving really memorable fights but the others aren't quite as lucky with the fandom:
Ritchie either serves as a good foil to Ash, or is a blatant shallow Marty Stu.
Tobias is seen as either a God-Mode Sue, an amusing Troll, or a Bad Ass all for using Legendary Pokémon in the Sinnoh League.
Cameron. He's either liked for having an actual persona in terms of League rivals Ash has faced, or he is the worst character ever created. Ash losing the Unova league to him when he only brought 5 Pokémon to a 6-on-6 match didn't help his case.
On the Pokémon side of things, there's Ash's Infernape in Sinnoh and Iris's Dragonite in Unova. Are they Badass or broken?
Broken Base: Very, and could apply to almost anything. Nearly every series has something that's broken the base:
Kanto: How Ash won his badges. Also geared towards the debatably rushed pacing and how sparse Character Development for the Pokémon was.
Also Solidad from the Battle Frontier arc, who shows up out of nowhere at the Grand Festival, is an old friend of Brock's, is also friends with Drew and Harley (I repeat, HARLEY), ships May and Drew together, and goes on to win the whole Grand Festival (other Grand Festival winners, Robert and Zoey, at least had build-up).
Tobias; sudden newcomer who shows up during the Sinnoh League just so there would be a powerful opponent to keep Ash from winning. Doesn't help that he was given legendaries. Although some people liked him - their problem with him was more that he had little personality, or at least context to explain how he obtained his Darkrai and Latios.
Cameron, however, is even worse because he wins his battle against Ash purely by Diabolus Ex Machina/Deus ex Machina when his Riolu evolves to defeat Snivy and Pikachu! To say the fandom blew a gasket over him is putting it lightly.It's not just that, though - it's also the fact that, A, he was one Pokémon short (thinking it was 5-on-5), and B, Riolu/Lucario swept half of Ash's entire team single-handed. Even when Ash's team evolves mid-battle, they don't beat more than one Mon after doing so - Swadloon beat Whirlipede and lost to Leavanny; Roggenrola/Boldore only beat Excadrill; and Unfezant beat Swanna. Even if Ash had won that bout, there'd have been people upset that Pikachu and Pignite "hogged all the glory" during that match (even then, many would only give Pikachu slack if it beat Lucario because they expect the Mon that defeated a Regice and tied with a Latios to be practically God-Mode). There is indeed some Irony, but it's not all unjustified irritation...
The Chimchar that Paul abandoned, and Ash took in soon after, is considered this as well - mostly due to taking glory away from the rest of Ash's Sinnoh team; especially regarding what happened to Turtwig after evolving. It got to the point of Chimchar taking out two Pokémon in each of the last four freaking Sinnoh gym leaders IN A ROW! ...Then to top it off, it took out THREE of Paul's six Pokémon during their league match!
Critical Dissonance: Despite constant criticism over how the series is being handled and written, it's still going very strong, is well-liked with kids and loyal older fans (and helps rake in the cash for the rest of the Pokémon franchise), and isn't showing any signs of dying in the foreseeable future.
Some wonder if the anime producers actually know much about the video-games they base the anime off of due to some of the mistakes they've made in the anime. Some examples are:
The many times that attacks have worked on types they should be immune against. The prime example being Pikachu's Electric attacks damaging Ground types on more then one occasion.
Pokémon attacks accomplishing feats that shouldn't be possible. For example, Safeguard working like a version of Protect instead of blocking against status effects.
Pokémon being considered unable-to-battle in occurrences that would normally allow Pokémon to keep battling. The prime example being Squirtle's disqualification in the Kanto League match against Richie, because it was put to sleep.
Pokémon characteristics not transitioning from the games to the anime; the prime offender being a Pokémon's weight. Munchlax for example, a Pokémon that supposedly weighs about 230 pounds, was seen resting on May's lap; not injuring her in any way, and was even picked up and carried on Max's back on another occasion. This one might actually be forgivable due to some of the sizes set forth in the games being quite frankly ridiculous (Like Wailord being less dense than AIR).
The 4kids and PUSA dubbing companies are prone to this as well with translation mistakes such as:
Getting attack names wrong, calling certain Pokémon the wrong names, stating the wrong evolution chains and so on.
The dub-added Trainer's Choice however, was frowned upon by the fan-base as the prime example for why the dubbers knew nothing about the franchise; plagued with minor mistakes such as Pokémon being spelled wrong (Flaaffy alone was misspelled THREE times as Flaafy), or even major mistakes such as when one or both choices not picked by the dubbers, or even none of the choices given, are the best option for the question asked. For example, one question was Which one of these Pokémon is the best choice to battle Meditite?, and the three options are Beautifly (which they somehow mistook as being named Nuzleaf), Combusken and Heracross. The option the dubbers picked ended up being Combusken, a Pokémon that takes STAB super-effective damage from Meditite's Psychic-typing. The other options, Beautifly and Heracross, end up being the better options to pick. Beautifly, because it's Flying-type attacks are STAB super-effective and resists both of Meditite's types and Heracross for at least having some normal resistance to Meditite due to being part Bug. There's also the infamous "Which Pokémon evolves into Seviper?".
Misty asking how you can see a star in the middle of the day. The people behind this line probably forgot about that large sphere of plasma which appearance on the sky equals to daytime. More or less justified because of the fact it is very early in the series.
Die for Our Ship: The number of death fics written about Misty's sisters is staggering. House fire is a popular method, conveniently taking the gym with it.
Every one of Ash's female traveling companions, past, present, and future, gets this.
Just about every female character shipped with Ash is starting to get it now that Serena exists.
8.8: The fandom was hyped for the XY anime series, but Japanese audiences not so much, as it's premiere only got a 5.3 in the ratings. Considering the original series premiered at 10.2, Advanced Generation at 11.0, and both Diamond/PearlandBest Wishes at 9.3, this was a remarkable step-down and has many a fan pissed off.
It's fallen even farther since: episode 3 only got 5.1, episode 4 got under 4.7 (at which point it fell from the top 10), and episode 5 - a Gym episode - got only 4.4.
Also, several of Ash's Pokémon has developed rather large Fandoms over the course of the series due to their sheer Badassery or quirky Porsonalities. The most notable being Charizard, Heracross, Swellow, Sceptile and Staraptor. Even Ash's unofficial Pokémon, Haunter and Larvitar, have a place in fans' hearts. Also, the anime made Pikachu one. It was just another Pokémon before that.
Psyduck and Wobbuffet, two very similar, dopey Pokémon who just won't stay in their Poké Balls.
Conway, an intended one-shot who was added to two other story arcs (the Pokémon Summer Academy and the Sinnoh League) due to fan popularity.
Some of the Characters of the Day get this as well. Gligarman (an obvious Batman and superhero parody) was popular enough to frequently get requested to return to the show, especially when Ash had a Gligar/Gliscor of his own.
Harley, because he's such a Jerkass and yet sodamnFUNNY at the same time. He was also the first genuinely antagonistic rival in the series who remained an antagonist and not change his behavior, which the fans greatly appreciated.
Ursula, a one-shot character of the day that becomes a full-fledged rival for Dawn in the next season due to fan popularity for being an antagonistic rival; separating her from Zoey, Kenny and Nando.
Amongst Ash's numerous rivals, Stephan has become one of these. Being less prominent than Trip or Bianca (among others), he nonetheless has a lively and likeable personality, as well as being a Badass battler from what we get to see of his skills. It also helps that he gets what is, hands down, the best battle in the entire Unova League.
The Club Tournament contestants - many don't even get any lines, but their character designs are regarded as among the best parts of those arcs (Antonio and Jimmy Ray/Watchog Guy especially). Some of these characters, like the aforementioned Antonio, return for the Unova League.
Edmund the "Rain Man", who's an (almost literal) One-Scene Wonder (he appears momentarily before battling Stephan, and disappears altogether afterwards).
The Ducklett trio from an early Best Wishes episode, who caused bizarre, yet adorable chaos and trolled the characters several times. Ask any Pokémon forum about them, and you'll see they're almost universally loved.
Goes hand in hand with the above: the gang's first impression of the eponymous Pokémon in the episode "Charmander the Stray Pokémon"? "I think that this Charmander has an attitude problem." Hilarious, because that very Charmander would later turn out to be the gentlest of Ash's starter Pokémon...and harsh, because, well, who else would it evolve into 32 episodes later?
In the first episode, Garry boasts about how he got the best starter Pokémon from his grandfather Professor Oak which was later revealed to be a Squirtle. Turns out according to Science, he was right.
In an early episode, Ash asks Brock what he knows about the local gym leaders, as he wants to be prepared. He specifically says to succeed, one must "know yourself, and know your adversary!". Brock is impressed, before Ash notes he "got that one from Dexter!". He's referring to his Pokédex, but still, it describes that character's er, "work" philosophy quite accurately.
Anime!Lorelei only appeared during the Orange Islands saga. Come FRLG, we later learn Game!Lorelei's home is in the Sevii Islands. Coincidence?
In "The Ties that Bind", the announcer proclaims that Heracross' victory over Magmar was contributed to his "Guts". When game abilities are introduced, what would be one of Heracross' in-game abilities again?
"Why? Wynaut?": the one time Ash had a justifiable means of jumping a hundred feet through the air, Team Rocket think it's impossible. What about their opinions on the other times it's happened?
Wobbuffet really is the strongest member of Team Rocket, but Jessie just can't use him properly. It may be idiocy on her part, but, until Generation IV, the physical/special mechanics weren't exactly precise...
In "A Chansey Operation" back during Season 1, the doctor recommends Ash and his friends could become competent doctors (being impressed by their handling of the sick Pokémon while he was out), but they choose to keep following their respective dreams. Come the end of DP, Brock decides to become a Pokémon Doctor.
An earlier episode had Ash, Brock, and Character Of The Day Suzy denouncing the idea of making Pokémon look flashy by dressing them up with make-up and accessories, saying that it diminished their inner beauty. Come Generation IV and we have Super Contests, which partly depend on picking out accessories in order to garner points, and Dress-Up Rooms, which let the player go wild with accessories and backgrounds that sometimes may move and be flashy. This is taken even further in Generation V, where the Pokémon Musicals rely solely on the types of accessories that Pokémon can wear in order to make them stand out from the rest of the performers, with Trainers only able to decide to toss away an accessory twice during the entire musical number.
The first season episode "Showdown At Dark City" features a pair of gyms competing for the right to be made official. Both sides use underhanded tactics to sabotage the other gym, up to and including sending out multiple Pokémon at once to physically assault the opponent. In the end, Nurse Joy reveals herself and states that neither of them deserve to be a gym. This was written before Dark became an official type in the series and before Beat Up became a genuine Dark-type move.
During the battle between Ash and Misty regarding who got to keep Togepi, Psyduck barged out...again...and Bulbasaur made short work of him by using "Tickle". This was during G1; Tickle later became a real move in G2.
In Episode 3 overall, Ash calls out Team Rocket for sending out two Pokémon at once because that's cheating. Misty suggests that Ash do the same, but he worries because double battles aren't in the League rules...yet.
Episode 8 features A.J., an unofficial gym leader who puts his Pokémon through Training from Hell by fastening them with a "strength intensifier", a restraint that unlocks a Pokémon's potential but restricts movement. In Generation 3, cue the Macho Brace, an actual held item that...unlocks a Pokémon's potential but restricts movement.
Episode 5 has Ash defeating Brock's Onix with a Thunder Shock after said attack sets off the sprinkler system in the Pewter Gym and soaked Onix in water, alowing it's ground immunity to be bypassed. Gen 5 introduces the move Soak, which changes the target's type to Water, which is weak against Electric.
Idiosyncratic Ship Naming: Pick any two characters. There is a ___Shipping name for them. The more complete lists have thousands of entries.
Mention any shipping with Ash outside the designated forum (thread/topic/etc.). Your computer will be nice and toasty in minutes.
On a more specific level, who was the better traveling partner, Misty, May, Dawn or Iris?
Which line up of Ash's is the strongest? Or better yet, which is Ash's strongest Pokémon, Pikachu or Charizard? (God help you if you bring Sceptile or especially Infernape into the debate.)
If it helps any here, it's almost a universal agreement that his strongest Pokémon team consists of Pikachu, Charizard, Snorlax, Sceptile and Infernape. Its the 6th choice that usually drives people nuts.
When is Ash going to finally win a League Tournament?
The dub is ruined! 4Kids handled the dub better then TPCI! Bring back the original voice actors!
Which generation was the best? Which series?
Are these unresolved plots (GS Ball, professor Ivy, Unova meteorite) going to be answered?
Return of released Pokémon?
It's the Same, so It Sucks: Not much has actually changed in the show's 15+ year run. Every episode hits the same beats as all the others, and the plot resolutions are very predictable. Even the deviations from the norm (like Gym Leader battles) have their own norm that rarely, if ever, is broken. The lack on any overarching plot does not help at all (To Be A Master does not count as a plot when the main character is no closer to his goals than when he started).
That being said, the show doesn't actually SUCK per say, it's just really boring and predictable in its need to maintain the Status Quo.
Jerk Stu: Paul. Your first clue was when he bounced down a 400-foot cliff like a damn ninja while Ash just plummets to his amusing injury. Your second clue is that in four seasons, his only defeats involved three legendaries and a Garchomp. And Ash at the last minute, but even that barely phased him like one would realistically expect it to.
Magnificent Bastard: Giovanni. He's managed to keep his organization up and running for fifteen years of this show's history with only a few setbacks and fewer defeats.
Dr. Zager, Jessie, James, and especially Meowth put an effort into being this trope in their Nimbasa Subway mission in Best Wishes, which was a very well put-together plan that only fell apart because of slight oversights, our heroes persisting, and Meowth deciding to be a Smug Snake by mishandling his captive Pokémon.
Dr. Colress in the "Episode N" arc, who out-does even his boss Ghetsis in malevolent scheming.
Memetic Loser: Ash gets this treatment in the fandom, due to never winning a major league (just the anime-only Orange Islands). Still, he has shown to be a competent trainer, hero in many movies, and a champion of the Battle Frontier. But still "Gary was here, Ash is a loser" persists. (Originally Shigeru is the best, Satoshi is an Idiot◊).
Memetic Sex Goddess: One-shot character from Episode 9, Giselle, is said to be radiantly beautiful not only by herself but by Ash, Brock, and James all in the same episode. So she's now known among fans as the only girl Ash, Brock, and James were all smitten by, 'cause she's just that hot.
Similarly, Conway, who was intended to be a case of This Loser Is You. But again, it's rather botched in writing: if Conway's creepy attitude toward Dawn is meant to be bad and thus fans like him are bad too, then why does the anime staff go out of there way to show Dawn off?
Pokémon Hunter J is always a Complete Monster in all of her appearances, but in the "Pokémon Ranger and the Kidnapped Riolu" two-parter she really shows her cruelty when - besides her pursuit of the titular Riolu - she tries to kill Ash several times. First she orders her Salamence to burn the surrounding forest and fire Hyper Beam point blank; then she has her Drapion attempt to crush him (leading to one of the few times Ash ever directly attacks a Pokémon); and finally, she ejects him from her ship at great height. She also says that she wanted to punish Ash personally and took pleasure in trying to kill him and everytime she attacks Ash she is shown with a Slasher Smile.
Team Galactic's (and Cyrus' in particular) comes when Cyrus ordering Mars to blow up Iron Island (full of people and Pokémon) after Team Galactic have finished scanning Mt. Coronet. And he sported a Slasher Smile when he gave that order. And the reason behind this order? Just to make a statement about Team Galactic and the "new world". The guy's an Omnicidal Maniac par excellence, after all. Cyrus's plan to destroy the universe and create a new world in his image qualifies too.
Damian, Charmander's former trainer, was on the brink when he first abandoned Charmander, but he soared right over the line when he refused to come back for it once it started raining - not only would Charmander not move from its rock despite the threat of death if its flame went out, Damian knew this once Brock told him yet still didn't care...his alternate counterparts in Pokémon Yellow and The Electric Tale of Pikachu subvert this, since in both he's shown to be a poor trainer for some reason or other, but still cares for Charmander's well-being. Ironically, after acquiring said Charmander, Ash himself ends up exposing its tail to the dangers of water quite a bit, but unlike Damian, he ultimately cares about Charmander and its subsequent evolutions when all is said and done.
While he didn't really cross it, Team Rocket's Meowth came dangerously close (and ticked offPikachubig time) when it was revealed that he lied about being fired from Team Rocket and joined Ash and his friends, just so he, Jessie and James could steal their Pokémon. This is actually an extreme Kick the Dog moment for Meowth, and he is portrayed as a funny or sympathetic character in other episodes and has a few Even Evil Has Standards moments; also, from episode 12 of season 1, we see that Meowth is capable of killing (as demonstrated when he interprets a remark by the Squirtle Squad, who didn't join up with him to be hired killers, as a death threat to Misty) but didn't follow through with any of his threats because he's a Noble Demon.
Similarly to Damian, whom he's an Expy of, Shamus, the former trainer of Ash's Tepig, already had a huge Kick the Dog to his name when he abandoned Tepig in Accumula Town by tying it to a post, but went over the Moral Event Horizon when we learn that when he did so, he actually acted remorseful for having to do it and told Tepig that it was for the best, making Tepig think that he still loved him...except that when he was far enough away, he smirked and laughed about being free of his useless Pokémon! And he gloats about this to Tepig during his and Ash's battle, painfully shattering Tepig's view of him. Karma caught up to him when Tepig evolved into Pignite, took out both Shamus' fighters down and roasted Shamus' face at the end. What really makes the guy worse is that he was showing that he enjoyed Tepig's anguish at being abandoned and later fighting him. While Paul wasn't much better in training methods, at least he doesn't take sociopathic glee in torturing Pokémon long after they were abandoned like Shamus does.
Misblamed: A sadly hefty amount of fans unfamiliar with how animated television show production actually works think that the pulling of the "Team Rocket vs. Team Plasma" two-parter due to the 2011 earthquake and tsunami caused the later Seasonal Rot of Best Wishes because an entire arc with Team Plasma was scrapped as a result, when in fact no such arc ever existed. Up to the Nimbasa City episodes were already well into production when the disaster struck, and everything up to Iccirus City was written as-is by that point as well. In reality, the Seasonal Rot that affected Best Wishes was due to the Black 2 and White 2 games happening rather than a special third edition of Black and White like the writers initially anticipated. No major plans were changed due to the earthquake and tsunami other than two episodes getting pulled from the air.
There's a reason why Porygon, a.k.a. 'The Seizure Pokémon', is never seen in the anime anymore and its evolutions are never seen in the anime, period...Even though it was Pikachu that actually caused the seizures in the Porygon episode.
The Trainer's Choice segment where the English dubbers claimed that Arbok evolves into Seviper. The dubbing companies will perhaps never escape the constant ridicule they receive from the fandom for such an obvious mistake. 4Kids received the blame due to being the dubbers at the time (usually by people who hate 4Kids so as to add another excuse why they hate them), however these segments were created and written by Pokémon USA.
Ever since the Barboach/Whiscash episode that revolved around the Pokémon using Earthquake got banned before it's initial airing, many ground-type attacks such as Earthquake, Magnitude and Fissure have been established to never see the light of day in the anime to not have viewers be reminded of earthquakes that had struck Japan at some point in real life.
Also, the Best Wishes series will always bear the stain of having the heavily hyped "Team Rocket vs. Team Plasma" two-parter that was meant to air in 2011 being indefinately postponed and retconned (although see Misblamed above.)
This series is highly well known for memorable one-shot characters, many of whom aren't even from the games. Many of these characters are considered far more appealing that the main cast (which in some cases is not hard to do), and while sometimes it is justified why we never see them again, other times it's not.
Gym Leaders: Lt. Surge, Erika, Koga, Falkner, Bugsy and Chuck (after which all Gym Leaders are featured in at least two episodes). Sabrina is hugely considered to be a One Arc Wonder, thanks to being such a memorably terrifyingArc Villain. Marlon and Cheren also count.
Ironically, Steven Stone, despite being the Champion in Ruby And Sapphire, is reduced to one of these. However, he was given much different characterization (in particular, being hypocritical about Team Rocket digging holes in a cave, saying it would disrupt the Pokémon in the cave, as he blew a hole in the cave's roof), to the point that his one episode is rather infamous.
Replacement Scrappy: Tracey. Also, all the female companions past Misty will be this for some: May for replacing Misty, Dawn for replacing May, Iris for replacing Dawn, or Serena for replacing Iris. It's an everlasting trend, unfortunately.
Also, among Paul's fanbase and others, Trip is this. His initial characterization — stuck-up and critical of Ash — was too similar to Paul's character.
Also Cilan for replacing Brock. Some found him more annoying than charming, maybe even worse then Tracey.
The second Mewtwo is VERY unpopular with fans due to her story's lack of originality and her replacing of the famous first movie Mewtwo.
For those who disliked her anime portrayal in DP, Cynthia's characterisation in Best Wishes made some leeway in redeeming her. It helps that the preachiness was toned down some, with focus on making her a Cool Big SisMentor towards Iris.
Trip wasn't too popular until the Junior Cup, when he made up for his losses by impressively sweeping the tournament (with just Serperior). Losing to Alder and getting some much-needed Character Development also softened him up, making him a more likeable person as well.
The Scrappy: Quite a few. See the Scrappy anime page for details.
Seasonal Rot: Depending on who you ask: Johto, Hoenn, the entirety of Diamond/Pearl, and "Best Wishes: Season 2" are common answers.
Strawman Has a Point: The doctor in "A Chansey Operation" protests that his hospital is for humans and he isn't interested in helping Pokémon. Admittedly his casual attitude is cruel but he's absolutely right - he is suddenly being asked to treat a large variety of species with probably little knowledge about their reactions to certain medicines or proper temperatures, if he has to do a major operation there is no guarantee that he would have the faintest idea which major organs do what and a large number of the Pokémon are very dangerous and hard to control. If anything he's being more responsible than the trio or Nurse Joy. She never seemed to consider just using the clearly established Pokémon teleportation technology to send them to another Pokémon center.
Superlative Dubbing: The Norwegian dub may be one of the few dubs that actually has a guy voicing Ash, and while his voice is obviously way past hitting puberty, it's still cartoonish enough to fit, and has left many people agreeing it's a fresh and unique type of voice for Ash than the usual strained female voices (not counting the original). Listen for yourself here 
Tastes Like Diabetes: The anime has several moments of this. Specially in the scenes when the Pokémon start "talking" to each other. Also, alot of Dawn and Piplup's moments together.
Any One-Shot Character of the day that leaves a major impact amongst the fanbase. Particularly, ones that are Ensemble Darkhorse status that fans wish would return somewhere down the line.
Pokémon that could/should of been captured by one of the main characters because they were either likable Pokémon by the fanbase or because their development with a certain character made it look like they would fit together with that trainer perfectly. Some examples being:
Haunter, Houndour, Larvitar and Hippopotas for Ash.
For the Episode N arc, Zekrom not being involved in any way has irked a lot of people. Mostly out of disappointment that Zekrom is now nothing more than a plot-device to restart Pikachu at the start of the Unova journey.
"Haunter Vs. Kadabra"; all that build up to an epic rematch against Sabrina...and yet Kadabra is defeated by laughing too hard.
Depending on who you ask, the portrayal of the regional Evil Teams in the anime deviating greatly from their game counter-parts can come off very disappointing. The main complaint being that they all suffer from anti-climactic endings (as described on the main page). In addition:
Team Rocket never got to do some of the bigger operations they pulled off in the games such as taking over Silph Co. or the Goldenrod City radio tower, and outside the Rocket Trio, the team's appearances, as a whole, were incredibly limited all throughout the Kanto and Johto journeys.
Team Aqua and Magma were reduced to one-and-done episodes with no ongoing story aside from their needlessly vague goals and ended with a two-part finale that came completely out of nowhere.
Team Galactic's continuous Myth Arc was too few for an era that many claimed to have suffered greatly from Arc Fatigue.
Team Plasma was left completely out of the picture until finally getting an arc dedicated to them AFTER Ash had participated in the Unova League, and completely missing out on the original Team Plasma led by N before he pulled a Heel-Face Turn.
The GS Ball being left to rot at Kurt's house will never leave the minds of some fans due to how important the quest to open the ball seemed at the time. It WAS suppose to contain Celebi before the Pokémon was instead used for the next movie.
Speaking of Kurt; some often wonder what ever happened to Brock's Heavy Ball and Ash and Misty's Fast Balls which dropped off the face of the planet once the trio left Azalea Town.
The start of Unova with Team Rocket's ongoing side-arc with the meteorite is this for some fans due to the indefinite postponement of its Team Rocket vs Team Plasma finale, which was set to air moments after an earthquake had devastated Japan in real-life and left the ongoing plot literally unfinished. Though it is worth noting that the removal of that climactic two-parter changed nothing following it, as episodes are written in in sessions, anywhere between 25 to 30 at a time and produced far in advance, so the Unova arc up to Ash winning at least his 4th badge (already being produced) would have transpired as it did even had the earthquake not happened, and it's doubtful that much of what happened up to him winning his 7th badge (already written) would have been altered either.
Rage Quit/Moral Event Horizon: "You pathetic little...I command you to attack and you just sat there?!note Chimchar has a phobia of Zangoose, which Paul was aware of. What the hell's wrong with you?! Pack your bags, you miserable monkey. I'm gone, and so are you. Enjoy your two-on-one, loser!"
The Woobie: Sometimes Dawn, sometimes Ash, sometimes May and/or Max, and sometimes the Team Rocket trio, especially James. And on the Pokémon side of things, Chimchar.
After the revelation that they're simply punch clock villains in "Island of the Giant Pokémon", it's impossible not to feel sorry for poor Arbok and Weezing. After getting curb stomped by the heroes every single episode, you'd think that they would run away from Team Rocket just to escape the daily pain. But no- they keep on because they care about their trainers. And their final appearance is a testament to how Jessie and James feel the same way.
The Abra in "Fear Factor Phony." It was left behind by it's owners and left to live in old, abandoned, dilapidated building and always tormented about it's abandonment (as seen by its dream). Furthermore, it was demonized by the ghost Pokémon and Team Rocket thanks to it's siblings obnoxious behavior, despite it probably hated the noise as well, hence the force field.
Unfortunate Implications: In "The Kangaskhan Kid", the eponymous kid has been raised in the wild by Kangaskhan after being lost as a child. Why is he lost? Because his father dangled him out of a HELICOPTER and DROPPED him. This is never addressed. When the parents finally find him, his father promptly knocks him out with a large stick so they can take him back easier. Both actions imply child abuse, and this is never resolved. At the end of the episode, they reunite as a "happy family"...on top of a cliff.
In "The March of the Exeggutor Squad", Melvin the magician lets Exeggute hypnotize Ash and kidnaps him, forcing him to capture Pokémon for Melvin. It doesn't help that Melvin is a little creepy.
Woolseyism: Naturally quite a few, particularly the puns which can/can't be translated. Brock's Sudowoodo's use of "Take Down" in the original Japanese - which Sudowoodo cannot legitimately learn in the games - was changed in the English dub to "Double Edge", a move with similar properties which Sudowoodo can use...similarly, in the episode where Ash challenged Roxanne's Gym, her Nosepass apparently used "Hyper Beam" twice in the Japanese version (during Ash's episode battling her) - but given the electric-based properties of the attack (which was actually plot-relevant), the dub changed these two instances to "Thunder Wave" and "Zap Cannon" respectively, which actually makes more sense (Zap Cannon is probably what the attack was meant to be, anyway).
Hikari/Dawn's Embarrassing Nickname, "Pikari"/"Dee-Dee", is a particularly clever one, which makes you wonder if PUSA had planned it ahead. Dawn's nickname is treated as a Noodle Incident until the last DP Season, where its origins are revealed to be from Dawn having been shocked by a Plusle and Minun when she was little - her friend Kenny partially traumatised her at the time by calling her "Pikari" (in reference to pikapika, the sound an electric sparkle makes). Since the dub changed her name, the nickname becomes Dee-Dee - which is short for "Diamond Dandruff", a rather suitable nickname for the scenario.
While being a "Pokémon Sommelier" fits for Cilan "tasting" the compatability between Pokémon and trainers, "Pokémon Conoisseur" works much better when it comes to Cilan's various hobbies when he declares himself a "—- Conoisseur", seeing as a conoisseur is another term for an enthusiast.
Team Rocket's English Motto. Don't you dare deny it.