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Characters / Pokémon: I Choose You!

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Verity (Makoto)

Voiced by: Shiro Sato (JP), Suzy Myers (EN), Azul Valadez (LA Spanish)

An energetic and tomboyish trainer from Twinleaf Town.

  • Action Girl: Not in the same vein as Iris, but Verity has no problems leaping around and getting her hands dirty.
  • Composite Character: As the other examples show, she's Misty with a splash of Dawn.
  • Disappeared Dad: Considering she has a mother yet it is never mentioned who her father is.
  • Identical Stranger: According to Word of God, Verity's mother is not Cynthia despite the woman in the picture looking like her.
  • Making a Splash: Both her Pokémon are Water-types.
  • Meaningful Name: Her English name is a nod to Lake Verity, a significant location in Pokémon Diamond and Pearl that's close to her hometown of Twinleaf.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: A tomboyish girl who trains water Pokémon and has insecurities regarding her family, much like Misty in the original series.
  • Utility Party Member: Aside from Piplup, she also has Lapras in her party. She sends it out when her group needs to cross a lake.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Gal: The reason why Verity went on a Pokémon journey in the Kanto region is because her mother is a famous Pokémon trainer and she could not live up to her expectations.

Sorrel (Souji)

Voiced by: Kanata Hongou (JP), David Oliver Nelson (EN), José Luis Piedra (LA Spanish)

A young trainer from Veilstone City aiming to be a Pokémon Professor.

  • Flat Character: Not him, given his status as Mr. Exposition. His Lucario, though... Make a Drinking Game and take a sip whenever it's not sitting, walking, or standing around doing nothing. His assumed ace gets less scenes than Verity's Piplup even after the trio travels together.
  • The Medic: He is able to make medicine for rain-stricken Charmander, though he admits it tastes bitter.
  • Mr. Exposition: As an aspiring Pokémon researcher, Sorrel is well familiar with the myths and lore behind Legendary Pokémon. He tells Ash and Verity the legend of Ho-Oh and the Three Beasts, and the prophecy of the Rainbow Hero.
  • Noodle Incident: Meeting Lucario restored his faith in making friends with Pokémon...and that's it. Ironically, the cataclysm for his lack of faith has more explanation.
  • Posthumous Character: His family's Pokémon Luxray, who died warming him from snow.
  • The Power of Friendship: After his family's Luxray froze to death, he distanced himself from Pokémon as he feared he would lose them until he met his Lucario. Sadly, he offers no more explanation about this encounter than the incident, ironically.
  • Suspiciously Similar Substitute: A serious young man who acts as the voice of reason between Ash and his female companion, is knowledgeable about Pokémon in general and has a goal that involves the study and care of Pokémon, much like Brock in the original series.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Mistakenly calls Ash out on leaving Charmander in the rain until Verity tells him that it was abandoned by another trainer.


Voiced by: Ryota Ohsaka (JP), Billy Bob Thompson (EN), Héctor Mena (LA Spanish)

An arrogant trainer who believes strength is everything and aims to become the ultimate Pokémon master. He is Ash's main rival in the movie and is the former owner of Charmander.

  • Cats Are Mean: His main Pokémon is Incineroar, a Heel-Wrestler tiger that fights with no mercy.
  • Composite Character: He's a combination of Gary (Ash's rival during his travels through Kanto), Paul (believes a Pokémon's strength is everything, will release them if they fail to meet his expectations, and even released a Fire-type starter Pokémon that Ash later captured), and Damien (Charmander's previous owner who abandoned him for being weak).
  • Evil Redhead: Subverted. He has orange hair and a Jerkass. But in the end, underwent a Heel–Face Turn.
  • Evil Virtues: Despite starting as an arrogant jerk, the foil for the good-natured Ash, Cross actually shows some desiderable traits for a Pokémon trainer.
    • The Ultra Moon Pokedex index for Lycanroc Midnight form states that They will only listen to orders from Trainers who can draw out their true power. There's no doubt, and it's made evident in the climax, that Cross trained his Lycanroc as good as he could, even bonding with him.
    • Cross actually has every bit the passion of Ash Ketchum, just he utterly lacks, or rather lacked, his kindness, playing favorite with his best Pokémon and throwing away the weakest.
    • After his Heel–Face Turn he accepts to part in a civil way from Ash Ketchum, expressing the desire to have a better, less anger-fuel rematch.
  • Flat Character: His Incineroar has no characterization beyond only appearing for battles. His Midnight Lycanroc has more, but it's not enough to write home about.
  • Foil: To Ash, in the same vein as his Expy Paul. Both aim To Be a Master, but while Ash treats his Pokémon with love, Cross does not prioritize bonding with his own Pokémon and sees strength as more important. He's also a foil to the main series version of Ash in a different way. Both saw Ho-Oh early in their journey but didn't receive a Rainbow Wing. Cross grew to resent this and train for strength alone, but for Ash it was an inspiration to explore and meet new Pokémon.
  • Freudian Excuse: He also saw Ho-Oh, but it never left a Rainbow Wing for him like it did Ash, which led him to train Pokemon for strength alone.
  • Heel–Face Turn: After accidentally corrupting the Rainbow Wing, he manages to get Lycanroc to snap out of its possession by Marshadow and helps fight off the other Pokemon.
  • Jerkass: There isn't really a traditional human villain in the movie, so this guy is there to be a humongous jerk.
  • Kick the Dog: Or rather, Kick The Charmander.
  • Might Makes Right: His entire philosophy revolves around this: as long as you have power, nothing else matters. He even says this word-for-word in his last battle with Ash.
  • Noodle Incident: He notes that the day he obtained his Lycanroc, it bit him.
  • The Perfectionist: He has incredibly high standards for his Pokémon, to the point where he'll abandon those who don't live up to his expectations.
  • The Social Darwinist: He picks only the strongest Pokémon for his team, releasing those he ultimately deems to be weak.
  • Savage Wolves: He owns the wolf-like Midnight Lycanroc, which ends up possessed by Marshadow in the climax and becomes part of its rampaging army.
  • Sore Loser: After Charizard defeats Incineroar, he steals Ash's Rainbow Wing and tries using it to summon Ho-Oh.
  • Take That!: One could interpret Cross's character as a jab at overly-competitive Pokémon players who only care about using the strongest Pokémon.
  • Uncatty Resemblance: His eye shape and cat smile, wild orange hair and red and black clothing make him resemble his ace Incineroar.
  • You Bastard!: Cross is every bit what a Competitive Player is while playing every single Pokémon game strategically. But while the strategically oriented player is incensed for it, Cross is painted as the Heel, if not the outright antagonist of the story.
    • Catching multiple Pokémon of the same type to release the weakest and the ill-natured? Check.
    • Grinding your Pokémon mercilessly and end up boxing or releasing the ones not living to your standard as soon as you can get the hands on something better and/or get a Ditto with perfect IV and rebreed your whole adventure team with perfect pups? Check.
    • Always choosing strength over friendship? Check.
    • Basically, Ash is the kid every competitive or strategically oriented player used to be when the first movie aired, Cross is what 20 years of competitive gaming did to him. Feel old yet?
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: Releases Pokémon he deems to be weak, such as Charmander.


Voiced by: Arata Furuta (JP), Mike Pollock (EN), Ferso Velásquez (LA Spanish)

An old researcher who has been chasing Ho-Oh for 20 years.

  • The Hermit: He's been traveling alone in search of Ho-Oh around Mount Tensei.
  • I Choose to Stay: While Ash and friends return back to civilization at the film's end, Bonji remains back at Mount Tensei waiting for the next Rainbow Hero.
  • Miniature Senior Citizen: He's fairly weathered and is just as short if not shorter than our ten-year old protagonists.
  • Mr. Exposition: His book covers the various legends regarding to Ho-Oh and the Rainbow Hero, including what happens when a Rainbow Wing is touched by someone with an evil heart. He himself explains Marshadow's role in the movie.
  • Mythology Gag: The hat he is wearing is Red's original hat from Generation I, complete with a leaf badge symbol at the left corner. Kinda fittingly given that he's been searching Ho-Oh for the past 20 years, which happens to be a year after the franchise debuted.
  • The Nose Knows: Bonji can literally sniff out the presence of Ho-Oh, best demonstrated when Ash arrives with the Rainbow Wing.

Team Rocket
Jessie/Musashi voiced by: Megumi Hayashibara (JP), Michele Knotz (EN), Diana Pérez (LA Spanish)
James/Kojiro voiced by: Shin-ichiro Miki (JP), Carter Cathcart (EN), José Antonio Macías (LA Spanish)
Meowth/Nyarth voiced by: Inuko Inuyama (JP), Carter Cathcart (EN), Gerardo Vásquez (LA Spanish)

A trio of no-good criminals consisted of Jessie, James and a talking Meowth. They've been trailing Ash and friends in the hopes of capturing rare and valuable Pokémon, but are always a step behind and often find trouble waiting for them instead.

  • Adaptational Comic Relief: They were always comic relief villains in the original series, but they had their moments of seriousness as a major threat and as characters. But thanks to being reduced to glorified cameos, this incarnation of Team Rocket is just comic relief, only there to provide levity from the more heavy moments of Ash's journey. They don't even talk to Ash at all and instead exist in the background, stalking him and making goofy quips. Downplayed in The Power of Us and especially Secrets of the Jungle.
  • Adaptational Wimp: Not that they were all that capable in canon, but here they get beaten by wild Pokemon easily and never once engage Ash in battle. Ash does chase them down in The Power Of Us but they get away.
  • The Artifact: The only reason they are even in the movie despite contributing nothing to the story is because it wouldn't be a Pokémon movie starring Ash and Pikachu if their recurring arch-nemesis that is the trio didn't make an appearance. Averted in the next two movies where they play main roles.
  • The Chew Toy: Nearly their entire role in the movie is to be hilariously beaten up by the Pokémon that Ash and friends just barely escaped. Downplayed in the next two films.
  • Demoted to Extra: They appear sporadically through the movie, but they never personally interact with the heroes in any way like they do in the original anime. The next two films give them major roles.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: Jessie's Wobbuffet makes an appearance with Team Rocket in the Meowth hot-air balloon during the credits, despite the fact that Jessie only got him in a trade mix up during the Johto saga in the original series.
  • Even Evil Has Standards: In Pokémon: Secrets of the Jungle, they're completely horrified by Dr. Zed having been the one who killed Koko's parents and as such, anonymously release footage of what Dr. Zed did to the authorities and get him arrested.
  • Goldfish Poop Gang: They've been following Ash and friends in the hopes of capturing rare and powerful Pokémon, but always find misfortune waiting for them.
  • Unknown Rival: They never confront Ash face to face despite looking for the same Pokémon, and it's not even clear if Ash knows they exist at all. However, Ash does recognize them in The Power of Us, showing that he's met them at least once by that point.
  • What You Are in the Dark: In Secrets of the Jungle, they anonymously release Dr. Zed's confession video where he reveals he killed Koko's parents when he was a toddler to the authorities simply because the man has no regards for ethics or welfare/



Voiced by: Kōichi Yamadera (JP), Nathalie Gorham (EN)

A mysterious Pokémon that appears with Ash sometimes during his journey to Mt. Tensei. Legend has it that it serves as a shadow guardian, making sure that the Rainbow Wing is not at the wrong hands.

  • Ambiguously Evil: Marshadow's motives are not clear until the very end of movie. It also sends Ash into a nightmarish Dream Land without Pokémon. But that event also made Ash realize the errors of his ways, and Marshadow does not attempt to interfere further. Turns out, according to Bonji, that Marshadow is merely observing Ash to see if he is pure enough to hold the Rainbow Wing. This turns tragic, however, when Cross steals the Rainbow Wing from Ash and attempts to summon Ho-Oh himself but thanks to his impure heart, the Rainbow Wing gets corrupted beyond what Marshadow is able to fix and Marshadow begins to attack everyone on sight, which indicates that the Rainbow Wing itself may have an effect on it and is basically the one thing keeping it good and stable.
  • Casting a Shadow
  • Curb-Stomp Battle: After getting affected by the corrupted Rainbow Wing, it absolutely mops the floor with Pikachu.
  • The Watcher: Its purpose is to judge whether a trainer has a good enough heart to summon Ho-Oh at Mt. Tensei.


The Legendary Rainbow Pokémon that Ash saw on his first day of his journey. Unlike the original series, a single feather known as the Rainbow Wing falls from Ho-Oh and ends up in Ash's hands. Ash and Pikachu vow to meet and battle Ho-Oh one day, kicking off the main plot of the movie.

  • Ascended Extra: Ho-Oh had a minor role in the main series, being the first Pokémon beyond the original 151 seen in media and a symbol of Ash's journey in the original series. Though there have been hints to a larger subplot, Ho-Oh never got a bigger appearance beyond brief cameos, was never featured in any of the previous Pokémon movies, and was quietly dropped off while other Legendaries took its place starting with Diamond and Pearl. This movie changes all of that by making the main story be about Ash and Pikachu finding Ho-Oh again.
  • For Want of a Nail: The reason why this Ash's journey is radically different from the main series? Ho-Oh dropped a Rainbow Wing as it was flying over Ash. The Rainbow Wing fueled Ash's desire to see it again rather than treat it as a special moment, and thus he took a different path than the Ash from the main timeline did.