Follow TV Tropes


Characters / Pokémon Protagonists And Rivals: Kanto

Go To


The protagonists and rivals of Pokémon Red and Blue, Yellow, FireRed and LeafGreen, and Pokémon Let's Go Pikachu! and Let's Go Eevee!.

    open/close all folders 

    General Tropes 
  • Always Someone Better: At the end of the story, they are this to Blue.
  • Bash Brothers: In Sun and Moon, Red runs the Post-Game Battle Facility along with Blue.
  • Best Friend: Red and Blue prior to the events of the Gen I games. After their rivalry across Kanto, and some old grudges held during the Johto games, they seem to be back to this by the time they go to Alola in Sun and Moon and are described as such in Masters.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: At the end of the main game, Oak states that the protagonist's journey was one, remarking that "s/he has come of age."
  • Colorful Theme Naming: The trainers of this generation have their Canon Name as primary colors, with version names being the same as these names. This relates to Kanto's Colorful Theme Naming with its towns.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: It's Red who appears in HeartGold and SoulSilver, establishing him as the canon player character of FireRed and LeafGreen.
  • Curtains Match the Window: Both Red and Green have brown eyes and brown hair.
  • Disappeared Dad: He's mentioned once when you check out the televisions in Celadon Department Store, but he never appears. The Rival's parents aren't mentioned at all, and he lives with his gramps and older sister.
  • Fanservice Pack: Check out what Red and Blue look like in Sun and Moon. WOW. Justified because they've gotten older.
  • Mythology Gag: While they've been replaced as the main cast with Chase, Elaine, and Trace, they appear as bonus characters in the Let's Go remakes with designs based on the Gen I appearances, including Green.
  • Nice Hat: Starting a trend that pretty much all of the player characters would have, they both wear hats with a Poké Ball insignia on them.
  • Older and Wiser: Though it's unclear how much older they are than the Let's Go heroes, they are a bit taller and much more accomplished in a bit of Canon Welding between these remakes and their role in the previous continuity:
    • Blue apparently went through a Kanto adventure without a Pokédex, now works directly with Oak, and has been courted by the Pokémon League to take over as Viridian Gym Leader more than once. You encounter a lot of him in the main game but he doesn't directly mention whether he even knows the other two original trainers, if they went on that unseen adventure together, or how recent that adventure was.
    • Red and Green are both high level trainers. Still out there battling, exploring, and hunting Legendary Pokémon like Mewtwo just like a real Player Character should be, in the post-game.
  • Similar Squad: Their teams in Let's Go have a theme to them: Grass-, Fire-, and Water-types (Kanto starters in one of those slots), strong Normal-types, trade evolutions and miscellaneous (Pikachu for Red, Clefable for Green, and Aerodactyl for Blue).
  • Schrödinger's Player Character: In FireRed and LeafGreen, the unchosen player character does not appear to exist. In the series as a whole, Red is treated as the canonical protagonist, with Green not making her proper debut until Let's Go.
  • Suddenly Voiced: The protagonist, unlike most future heroes, and ironically enough considering Red's reputation, actually makes the odd internal comment when examining objects (where most future Player Characters merely get descriptions), such as mentioning his/her dad when you check out the televisions in the Celadon Department Store, and remarks that s/he "should get going" when you examine the TV in his/her house and notes that they "better not touch it" when examining various pieces of technology. S/he also talks to Copycat, causing her to state his/her unseen dialogue. This is made even more clear in the Japanese version, where these pieces of text and some others are clearly written as if they are being spoken or thought.
  • Vague Age: One of the few times in the series this is averted, as Red is stated to be 11 years old (making him around 14 in the Gen II games). He appears to be in his 20s in Generation VII.
  • Wolverine Publicity: The Kanto trainers are by far the most popular and recognizable human characters in the franchise. Putting them in a game is always a massive draw, and as such Red and Blue have appeared in every Generation (if you include remakes) except for Generation VI.


Red (レッド reddo)
Voiced by: Brandon Winckler (Pokémon Masters - EN)

This young man is perhaps the most iconic human character of the series. An 11-year old from Pallet Town who used to be the best of friends with a boy named Blue. At the start of Pokémon Red and Blue, Red and Blue are given a task by Professor Oak, Blue's grandfather and the local expert on Pokémon: to travel around the Kanto region and capture all 150 known Pokémon to complete the Pokédex, a device that records data on Pokémon encountered and captured. To help with this, Oak gives Red and Blue one Pokémon each from Oak's remaining three. (In Pokémon Yellow version, Red's starter Pokémon is a Pikachu that Oak captured on Route 1). With this one Pokémon, Red ventures far from his home town, challenging the various gyms and thwarting the operations of the criminal enterprise Team Rocket in order to become a Pokémon Master.

In Pokémon Red, Blue and Yellow, he was the only player character, and is still the only protagonist to appear in later games in person. He's the strongest trainer in Pokémon Gold and Silver and can also be battled in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, Pokémon Sun and Moon (original and Ultra), and Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!. Red's design also appears as a character in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, in which he commands Squirtle, Ivysaur, and Charizard to battle for him. Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U features Pokémon Trainer as a trophy, and expressly states that Red and the Pokémon Trainer from Brawl are one and the same.

Red has appeared in many spin-off media, most prominently Pokémon Adventures. In addition, the lead character of the main anime series shares his name with one of Red's default names (Ash in English and Satoshi in Japanese).

  • The Ace: Implied through potential events that can transpire in the games, as well as Red's Bonus Boss status in Pokémon Gold and Silver. As a Bonus Boss, Red's team is the highest leveled of any trainer in the entire series (not counting battle facilities that automatically set levels to 100). Put simply, he's the very best. Like no-one ever was.
    • In Pokémon Sun and Moon as well as Pokémon Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon, which take place years after the adventure in Kanto, he has been specifically requested alongside Blue to help spearhead the Battle Tree as part of the initiative to develop the Alolan Pokémon League. He and Blue share the exclusive trainer title "Battle Legend", and they are both the bosses of a battle facility where Champions, Elite Four Members, and Elite Rivals participate, implying they are beyond even the level of a typical Champion.
    • In Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, Red will only appear at the Indigo Plateau if the player has a full team, and has previously defeated at least 6 Master Trainers. This suggests that each Pokémon on Red's team is trained as well as those belonging to a Master Trainer - but while those trainers specialize in only that species, Red is such a capable trainer that he can match a specialist's level of training with multiple species at a time. His edge over even Master Trainers is indicated when, upon his defeat, the player is awarded the "Battle Master" title. Furthermore, while Blue easily deals with whatever challenge he faces during the story, and is famous region-wide as an incredibly strong trainer, Red's team is of a much higher level. In other words, Red is in most appearances either tied or, or far and away the strongest trainer, even when compared to other trainers that would usually be considered the ace.
  • Adaptation Dye-Job: Has black hair in Generations I and II, but this is made into light brown hair from Generation III onward, likely to differentiate him from Ash.
  • Always Someone Better: Red is this to Blue, as he canonically defeats Blue in all but the first of their encounters. He is also, optionally, on the receiving end of this trope as Ethan/Lyra, Sun/Selene, and Rosa/Nate can all optionally battle (and thus, defeat) Red.
  • Badass Adorable: He's 11 years old in Red and Blue and their remakes. 14 in Gen II/IV, and he's gotta be at least 16 if not older by Black 2 and White 2, but still uses his HeartGold and SoulSilver kid design. In Sun and Moon, though, he's finally shown growing out of this, given a character redesign in his late teens or early twenties.
  • Beyond the Impossible: Throughout the series, the highest rank a trainer can have is "Champion", which both Red and his rival Blue have held at one time or another. As an adult, Red has a new title - Battle Legend - which he shares with Blue as the co-bosses of the Battle Tree, a facility staffed by Champions, Elite Four members, and Frontier Brains. In other words, it is implied that Red is actually such a powerful trainer that he outranks regional Champions.
  • Big Ol' Eyebrows: As an adult in Sun and Moon, his eyebrows are a lot thicker than they were when he was a kid.
  • Bonus Boss: He does not need to be fought in Gold and Silver and their remakes, unless you want bragging rights. Red is in fact the first Bonus Boss of the series, setting a trend for future games.
  • Boss Corridor: The match with Red in his new Mt. Silver lair at the end of Gold and Silver has a long hallway prior to his platform (this is also in an area with a lot of strong wild Pokémon).
  • Characterization Marches On: Early promotional artwork and comic depict him as spunky and frequently smiling. He also "talks" through Copycat's dialogue. Starting with Gen 3, the series has put emphasis Red being a quiet boy with a serious expression.
  • Chick Magnet: Quite a few girls are drawn to Red, though not necessarily just girls his age. This is something often carried over to his other incarnations.
  • Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: His Espeon has not made any appearances ever since it was replaced by Lapras in the HGSS remake.
  • Composite Character:
    • His GSC appearance prominently featured a Pikachu on his team, which indicated reference to Yellow, as all the Pokémon on his team could only be obtained through special encounters or as gifts, and Yellow was the only game where there was any Pikachu that could be considered special. Given that Yellow is a Recursive Adaptation of the anime, Red owes at least part of his character to Ash Ketchum. (From HGSS on, his Pikachu can often be seen using the moves Volt Tackle and Iron Tail, which Ash's Pikachu used quite prominently for years).
    • Red receives a redesign in Pokémon Masters that meshs his two designs: He keeps his general remake design, but he uses his classic hat and his new vest mixes traits of both his vest and jacket. His hair is also has a darker shade of brown that's a middle ground between his two hair colors.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: In all his main series appearances aside from those where he is playable, Red has always had all three Kanto starters on his team, as well as a Pikachu and sometimes an Espeon (representing the Eevee received in-game), so that his canon starter Pokémon is never apparent. In Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, Red splits the trio of Kanto starters with his peers Blue and Green, opting for a Venusaur while Blue uses Charizard and Green uses Blastoise, referencing the pre-release artwork showcasing all of them prior to the debut of Pokemon Redand Blue. It's worth noting, however, that Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! is an Alternate Universe retelling of Pokémon Red and Blue. Incidentally, in international releases they all use a starter that would be weak to the type their name represents. Subverted in Japan, however, given that Green's name is switched with Blue, meaning her name matches the type of her Blastoise.
  • Continuity Nod: Red's team in Pokémon Gold and Silver and all future appearances reflects the events of Pokémon Red and Blue. He has a Pikachu and the final forms of the three starters from Generation I, the Snorlax that was once blocking a path, and either Espeon in Pokémon Gold and Silver or Lapras in HeartGold and SoulSilver onwards.
  • Exposed to the Elements: Wears a vest over a T-shirtnote  or a short-sleeved jacketnote  on a perpetually snowing mountain peak. For at least a couple years straight. The only change from his normal outfit is a pair of gloves that don't look particularly warm. One piece of official art depicts him with a winter jacket and yellow scarf, but this is never seen in any game.
  • Eye-Obscuring Hat: In his HeartGold and SoulSilver and Black 2 and White 2 animations, his eyes are initially obscured by his hat until he lifts the brim. It doesn't obscure his eyes as much in Sun and Moon, but the effect is still there.
  • Famed In-Story: Known as the legend that disbanded Team Rocket and became champion of the Kanto League.
  • The Hero: In Gen II and the Gen IV remakes, Red is often referred to as this, for taking out Team Rocket and becoming the Champion three years prior.
  • Heroic Mime:
  • Holding Back the Phlebotinum: His team was composed of level 80s during his training on Mt. Silver, and when fought on first reaching the Battle Tree they're in their sixties (except Pikachu who is level 70). Even still, they are powered down to level 50 during the World Tournament, like any other trainer. This also applies to his introductory battle with the protagonist of Pokémon Sun and Moon, though given that Red and Blue are in charge of running a facility staffed by Champions (among others), and that Blue was fairly casual in recognizing the player as a new Champion, it appears likely that both Red and Blue were holding back. Their confidence is more justified during if they are challenged in the Battle Tree, where each is able to Mega Evolve multiple Pokémon and use Z-Moves. If the Battle Tree itself lacked level normalization, it is quite possible the levels of their teams would once again reach the 80s.
  • Hot-Blooded: According to a Generation I comic drawn by Sugimori, and many early pieces of media, in a stark contrast to how he is usually perceived now.
  • Hunk: Not quite, but Sun and Moon shows that an older Red is getting close to being one of these, being somewhat more thickly built than Blue, who looks more like a Bishōnen.
  • Iconic Item:
    • Both his original and remake Nice Hats.
    • In Sun and Moon, his new hat is largely forgotten in favor of his "96" T-shirt.
  • Legendary in the Sequel: Red is mentioned several times throughout Gold and Silver as the boy who single-handedly stopped Giovanni and disbanded Team Rocket three years prior, and is held in high regard. This carries forward into other generations as well; in the Sun/Moon trailer, he's explicitly referred to as a legend, and in the game itself he and Blue are the only trainers to have the title of "Battle Legend."
  • Limit Break: Venusaur can carry Grassinum Z, and his Lapras switches off between Normalium Z and Psychium Z.
  • Merging the Branches: When fought as a Bonus Boss, he traditionally has all three Kanto starters in his lineup.
  • Mythology Gag: Red's HeartGold and SoulSilver team is reminiscent of Ash's team during the Orange Islands arc, especially with Lapras replacing Espeon. Additionally, his Pikachu knows all the moves that Ash's Pikachu knew during the Diamond and Pearl series: Volt Tackle, Iron Tail, Quick Attack, and Thunderbolt.
  • Nice Guy: Implied in Red, Blue, and Yellow, as Professor Oak points out that Red is nice to his Pokémon.
  • Not So Stoic: His usual ellipses are accented with a "!" after losing so he has some emotional range.
  • Perpetual Frowner: In all his sprites and FireRed and LeafGreen official art. Notably, he's the only protagonist to not be smiling in his official art since the third generation. He also appears with a scowl in his default Nendoroid face, and his 3DS theme alongside Blue. This even carries forward into his Sun/Moon design, where despite being basically an adult now, he still can't seem to crack a smile! Exemplified in his Nendoroid model. Look at the face of the version of him holding the Master Ball!.
  • Previous Player-Character Cameo: He reappears in Gold and Silver, HeartGold and SoulSilver, Black 2 and White 2 and Sun and Moon as a Bonus Boss.
  • The Quiet One: From his enduring scowl, to his Visible Silence gag as a Previous Player Character Heroic Mime, but later made clear to be a character trait. Described as such in his Masters bio, but previously lampsahded by Blue, sarcastically calling him a "chatty gossip" in Gen III, and more seriously "silent as ever" in Gen VI. Even as far back as the original games, a sailor on the SS Anne described him as "the strong silent type."
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Irony time, Blue Oni to Blue's Red. While he's not talkative and usually seen with a serious Game Face on, his rival is cocky, sarcastic, and usually wears a smug grin. Just look at their 3DS theme together, and one of the earliest examples of their contrast.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Zigzagged. Although Blue acts more like an aggressive, arrogant jackass compared to Red, Blue is actually more emotional and loses his temper easily while Red is usually calm and almost never shows any emotions. This is even emphasized in their new designs in Sun and Moon, where Red has a more well-built, toned appearance, while Blue looks more like a pretty boy.
  • Signature Mon: His highest-leveled Pokémon (as well as the highest-leveled Pokémon not counting Battle Facilities) is his Pikachu. In Yellow canon, it is his actual starter Pokémon. He is also strongly associated with the three fully evolved normal Kanto Starters, although adaptations prefer using Venusaur (Pokémon #1) and Charizard (His version namesake) moreso than Blastoise.
    • In the games, Pikachu is always the highest leveled Pokémon used by Red as an NPC trainer in each game it appears in, and the highest leveled Pokémon you could face in a trainer battle in the entire franchise overall. The anime has only solidified the connection further, and he always sends it out first.
    • Before any adaptations or sequels it was pretty solidly the Bulbasaur line, such that Pokémon #001 goes to the first protagonist. While all three of his starters have used the Starter Ultimate Moves, and Mega Evolution, only his Venusaur is equipped to use Z-Moves in Sun and Moon. Likewise in Let's Go Pikachu and Eevee Red has a Venusaur on his team to match his original artwork. He also is seen owning a Bulbasaur during the first episode of Generations and it's his manga equivalent's starter in throwback to the same artwork. And while Charizard may have been Ash's ace, Bulbasaur was his longest tenured Kanto starter, being the first to join and last to leave the party officially.
    • In many other adaptations such as Pokémon Origins and one short in Generations, Charmander is Red's preferred starter instead. Which makes sense, since it fits his overall demeanor and name a lot better. Ash Ketchum, Red's official Anime counterpart, likewise had a Charizard as his powerhouse for the majority of the original series, being his only fully evolved Kanto starter making him both the "Charizard Trainer" when they faced Mewtwo, and setting up that his Gary would have a Blastoise when they finally fought. Red is also pictured with Mega Charizard X in the key art for Pokemon Masters.
  • So Proud of You: In Gen II, his mother remarks that she's worried for Red, but proud of him for doing what he wants to do.
  • Sudden Name Change: In the Official Fan Book of Pocket Monsters, Red was originally called Satoshi (サトシ) in a special preview of the Gold and Silver games, which is also Ash Ketchum's Japanese name. It was later changed to Red in the actual games for reasons unknown.
  • Suddenly Voiced: Red in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Pokémon: The Origin, as well as the occasional odd internal comment and conversation with Copycat.
  • Super Mode: When Red is battled at the Battle Tree in Sun and Moon, all his starters have four different builds, with each of them having one dedicated to Mega Evolution (except Charizard, which has two to accommodate for each different Mega form). Notably, defeating him is the only way to receive the starter Mega Stones in Sun/Moon. His lone starter Pokémon in Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! is also capable of Mega Evolution.
  • The Stoic: He is described by a worker on the S.S. Anne as the strong silent type, and Blue sarcastically calls him a chatty gossip in the remakes. See Heroic Mime and Perpetual Frowner above. He seems to be a bit more cheerful in Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, however, if his artwork is any indication.
  • Third-Option Adaptation: He uses all four possible starters from the first game, avoiding giving him a canon starternote . He also uses Pokémon that the player character in Red & Blue received as gifts, or was forced to encounter.
  • Time Skip: He's visibly in his late teens/early 20's in Pokémon Sun and Moon. Most estimates put him at 21-24 years old, depending on the gap between Generation 4 and Generation 5.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Zig-zagged in Sun/Moon. During the optional battle with him at the entrance of the Battle Tree, Red's team is actually weaker than it was during the battle on Mount Silver a decade earlier, with lower levels and, with a few Pokémon, lackluster movepools. In the facility itself, however, he runs very complex sets and Metagame-viable strategies, and is one of the only trainers in the series to use both Mega Evolution and Z-moves. He also runs multiple sets with each Pokémon, implying that he has been training multiple Pokémon of the same species, possibly meaning that the entrance battle was just him testing the waters.
  • Took a Shortcut: Getting to Red in HeartGold and SoulSilver requires at least one of your Pokémon knowing the HM move Rock Climb in order to scale the walls of the cave, but none of his Pokémon know the move.
  • True Final Boss: The last and strongest NPC to be faced in Gold and Silver and their remakes, HeartGold and SoulSilver. After getting all 16 Badges between Johto and Kanto, you're given access to Mt. Silver and can find him at the top.
  • The Unintelligible: To almost everyone In-Universe except Blue.
  • Visible Silence: As an NPC, his dialogue consists solely of ellipses and an exclamation mark of surprise when defeated.
  • The Voiceless: In the games, the most he speaks is Visible Silence, which Blue lampshades in Sun and Moon as being "silent as ever", confirming this as a character trait.
  • Walking the Earth: In Gold and Silver, Red has retired as Champion and now focuses on training in Mt. Silver to get stronger.
  • World's Strongest Man: In the later games in the series, he's flat-out the strongest Trainer who ever lived.

    Blue Oak (Green Ōkido) 

Blue Oak / Green Ōkido (オーキド・グリーン ookido guriin)
Heart Gold/Soul Silver 
"I'm moving on up and ahead! By checking my Pokédex, I'm starting to see what's strong and how they evolve! I'm going to the Pokémon League to boot out the Elite Four! I'll become the world's most powerful trainer! ...well good luck to you! Don't sweat it! Smell ya!"

The Rival of the Player Character in Red and Blue. He was once the player character's best friend, but as he grew up he changed into a huge Jerkass. Though abrasive and cocky, he has the skills to back up his boasts and has set his sights on nothing less than becoming the Pokémon League Champion. After being defeated, he takes up the position of Viridian City's Gym Leader.

  • The Ace: The most accomplished rival in the series. What makes Blue unique is that he consistently outmatches you and becomes champion before you, giving the final battle a personal tone.
    • In Let's Go it's integrated into the story; as Professor Oak's grandson and a former Champion, he serves as a mentor to the protagonist and Trace in their journey, much like other Champions such as Lance, Cynthia, and Alder.
  • Adaptational Attractiveness: In the remakes. In the original he had a sneering, downright punchable face. The remakes changed it into a cocky grin.
  • Adaptational Nice Guy: In Let's Go, he actually acts like a mentor to the player and is fairly mature, a far cry from the arrogant brat he was in the original games, though he does keep his catchphrases.
  • Always Someone Better:
    • He always shows up ahead of you, even up to beating the Elite Four before you and being the Final Boss.
    • His remake artwork plays with this and portrays him holding an Ultra Ball rather than a Pokéball like the protagonists.
    • This gets reversed in Gold and Silver, where in the remakes, he will often talk about Red and how Red defeated him.
  • Anime Hair: His hair is spiked up in all of his appearances.
  • The Artifact: His name is Blue (as a reference to the Gen I games, Red and Blue) but in the Japanese version it is Green (in reference to the original Red and Green, which was never released internationally). There may have been an opportunity to fix this and have him be Green worldwide when the Gen I remakes came around, (LeafGreen was released in all territories, instead of say a WaterBlue, and his default name was changed to Green), but his name is still Blue in all later appearances. Despite this in more recent appearances the designers have gone out of their way to give him green clothes and overall motif while still not changing his name back to Green. This artifact even led to necessary change in the dub of Originsnote  and a Dub-Induced Plot Hole inPokémon Adventures. In promotional materials most (but strangely not all) English versions of his green auras and promo backgrounds have to be changed into blue ones.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: By Gold and Silver and their remakes, he's become the Viridian City Gym Leader. He's also the strongest one between Kanto and Johto. In Sun and Moon, it's made clear that Blue's second only to Red and acts as one of the two Final Bosses of the Battle Tree.
  • Badass Boast: His final speech before battling him as Champion:
    Blue: "While working on my Pokédex, I looked all over for Pokémon. Not only that, I assembled teams that would beat any Pokémon type. And now… I am the Pokémon League Champion! Red! Do you know what that means? I'll tell you. I am the most powerful Trainer in the world!"
  • Beyond the Impossible: Throughout the series, the highest rank a trainer can have is "Champion", which both Blue and his rival Red have held at one time or another. As an adult, Blue has a new title - Battle Legend - which he shares with Red as the co-bosses of the Battle Tree, a facility staffed by Champions, Elite Four members, and Frontier Brains. In other words, it is implied that Blue is actually such a powerful trainer that he outranks regional Champions.
  • Big Brother Mentor: He acts as this to the protagonists of Let's Go, giving them tips along the way and testing their mettle to see if they're strong enough to handle the Silph Co. mission on their own.
  • Bishōnen: In Sun and Moon, an older Blue appears to be edging into this, contrasting with Red, who's developing into a more thickly-built guy. Though quite frankly, he had been showing signs of developing into one of these even back in Heart Gold and Soul Silver.
  • Bootstrapped Theme: His Champion battle theme plays during the Real Life Pokémon Video Game Championship Finals.
  • Break the Haughty: When you beat him and end his short reign as Champion. Professor Oak telling him that he stands no chance of becoming the Champion again in his current state adds salt to the wound.
  • Catchphrase:
    • "Smell ya later!", easily his most iconic one despite actually only being used about twice in full in Generation I. Continues into GenVI. While he himself doesn't show up, an NPC says he visited the region. While he's managed to learn how to say "Bonjour", he still makes his exit with "Smell ya later".
    • "Whatever!", come HeartGold and SoulSilver.
    • There's also "Bonjour", which is mentioned again in X and Y.
  • Character Development: The first hint at this is him giving you the Fame Checker after you defeat him before Nugget Bridge because he felt guilty always being ahead of you. In the credits, he seems to be thinking about himself and his Pokémon after being told off by his grandfather and being beaten by you. In Gold and Silver, he is fairly less of a Jerkass. He is also much more mature and seems to have learned how to take care of his Pokémon. This is evident when his Pidgeot uses Return, a Normal attack that becomes stronger the more the Pokémon likes its user.
    • His animosity towards Red also simmers down throughout the games, from antagonistic (R/B) to somewhat indifferent (G/S) back to friends (S/M). Even in Masters both Red and Blue's trainer descriptions refer to each other as best friends.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard:
    • In Red and Blue, if his team includes Gyarados, said Gyarados knows both Dragon Rage and Hydro Pump at level 22 (if the player chose Bulbasaur) or level 23 (Squirtle), the latter of which the Pokémon should not know until level 43. While it is possible for Gyarados to be taught Dragon Rage early via TM (it naturally learns the move at level 25), no such explanation can be made for it knowing Hydro Pump early, implying his Gyarados may be an illegal Pokémon.
    • For an example that doesn't inconvenience the player, in Fire Red and Leaf Green, his Pidgeotto is first seen at level 17, one lower level than Pidgey is supposed to evolve at. It's possible he caught simply caught a different Pidgeotto in the wild, but is heavily implied otherwise.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • In Red and Blue, his sprite as the Champion had him wearing a leather jacket, which isn't seen again in Gold and Silver or the first generation remakes. It later returns in his design for HeartGold and SoulSilver.
    • His team when first battling him in front of the Battle Tree has the same Pokémon from when he competed in the Pokémon World Tournament which was the last time he was seen chronologically. His own selection in the Battle Tree includes all of his possible mons when originally fought as Champion, his Machamp added in HeartGold and SoulSilver, his Aerodactyl from the aforementioned PWT, and Tyranitar which is a common Pokémon in his rematches.
    • He adds Tauros in his Let's Go team, referring to how a scrapped battle with his grandfather in Generation I features one alongside Blue's own mainstays such as Exeggutor, Arcanine, and Gyarados.
    • His new design in Let's Go matches the design used in Generation II; much like in Generation II, he replaces Giovanni as the Viridian City Gym Leader in the post-game. He also shows up several times throughout the game before the protagonist and their rival, often at points where he was encountered in his debut games, and even battles the protagonist in Silph Co. to test their strength.
  • Cool Shades: His Sun and Moon Sugimori artwork has him taking off a pair of sunglasses.
  • Cutting Off the Branches: Averted, unlike with Red. He has none of the Kanto starters in any of his teams when fought as a Gym Leader or Pokémon World Tournament participant.
    • Played straight in Let's Go, where he uses the team that's similar to his final team if Bulbasaur is the selected starter note , with his ace being a Charizard that can Mega Evolve into Mega Charizard-Y in the post-game.
  • Demoted to Extra: In the second generation, he has settled into the role of Viridian City's Gym Leader. He has also made minor appearances in several later games as a Bonus Boss.
  • Dub Name Change: To follow with Red and Green becoming Red and Blue in international versions, he goes from Green to Blue. This can cause Dub Induced Plot Holes when Color-Coded Characters is invoked. See The Artifact above.
  • Famed In-Story: As the grandson of Prof. Oak, former Champion of Kanto, Gym Leader of Viridian City, and Battle Legend of the Alolan Battle Tree, Blue has an extensive resume known in his home region and beyond.
  • Family Theme Naming: Along both ends of the Dub Name Change. In English, the Blue Oak is a type of tree endemic to North America, fitting with Professor Oak. In Japan, the family name is Ookido, which is how the English word "orchid" is pronounced. The Northern Green Orchid is a type of plant found in Greenland, Iceland, and Akimiski Island in Canada.
  • Final Boss: Of the first generation. He becomes the Champion just before Red and, in bookending major Pokémon battles, is the last trainer faced in the first generation's final boss bonanza after being the first battle of the game.
  • Grand Father Clause: The reason Blue keeps his English name despite all the complications it has caused; the contrast with Red's name is just too damn fitting and iconic to get rid off.
  • Gratuitous French: "Bonjour!" is one of his catchphrases, at least to some extent, having first appeared before you battle him on the S.S. Anne. Even by the time X and Y rolls around he is mentioned to still use it.
  • Hell-Bent for Leather: In Generation I, except for Yellow, he wears a black leather jacket upon becoming the Champion. He wears it full-time in Generations IV and V.
  • Hijacked by Ganon: The novelty has been lost over the years, but the revelation that Blue is the Champion in Red and Blue was this. Up until that point, the player was led to believe that all they had to do was defeat the Elite Four to be considered the Champion, and the last time you encountered Blue, it was defeating him before traversing through Victory Road.
  • Humiliation Conga: After spending the entire game being snide, pompous, and self-centerednote  Jerkass, Blue's final defeat is not only a disaster on its own, his grandfather, who came to congratulate him, shows up to applaud not him but his opponent, while Blue himself gets a thorough tongue lashing for his trouble. In FRLG, it's not hard to imagine why he goes running off on his own immediately afterwards.
  • Informed Flaw: The apparent mistreatment of his Pokémon is never actually shown, only told.
  • It's All About Me:
    • His downfall is that he thinks so much about himself that he forgets to treat his Pokémon with love and respect. For the entire game, he views Pokémon as nothing more than cool, powerful creatures that can do whatever he wants for him and help him become Champion.
    • One may even consider the case of the encounter with him in Silph Co. His placement is DEEP within the building, in the room with the warp panel that leads to the president's office and Giovanni himself. However, it's very clear that his sole reason for being there was to challenge Red, as he promptly leaves to go challenge the Elite Four when you beat him, clearly uninterested in the fact that an infamous criminal organization has invaded and taken over a civilian corporation and taken people hostage. His only mention of it is that he muses how much trouble the Rockets gave Red before reaching him. While his Pokémon Origins self is considerably more dickish than in the game, in this situation he’s a bit better about it, it’s clear that his refusal to engage the Rockets is more out of considering that they’re in over their heads dealing with a notorious criminal organization. It helps that their encounter happens outside the building, the operation itself is clandestine instead of a city-wide invasion, with the two only learning about it from an employee that managed to escape, and Blue at least goes to inform the police with the employee while Red infiltrates the building.
    • Subverted in Let's Go, however. He actually cares about the progression of the protagonist and notably is presented as a model trainer. This is best shown during the aforementioned infiltration of Silph Co., where he tests out the player to see if they're ready instead of doing nothing and screwing off once he isn't interested anymore.
  • Jerkass: He likes to get under the player's skin anytime they cross paths.
  • Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Thankfully matures into this by Gold and Silver.
  • Late-Arrival Spoiler: Good luck trying to beat the game without accidentally finding out from somewhere that Blue is the Champion.
  • Leitmotif: He gets his jingle whenever he encounters you.
  • Meaningful Name: His Japanese surname, Orchid, can refer to a shade of light purple. His wears a purple shirt in his classic outfit and purple pants in FireRed and LeafGreen.
  • Non-Elemental: As a Gym Leader and Champion, Blue has no type specialty and is the only Leader in the entire series who doesn't. Technically, his Pokémon cover Fire, Water, Flying, Grass, Psychic, Fighting, Normal, and Ground/Rock.
  • One-Hour Work Week: Daisy mentions in HeartGold and SoulSilver that her brother goes out of town so often that it causes problems for the trainers. Technically, Blue's traveling the world to find and study new Pokémon for his grandfather, but that's little consolation to trainers who want a Viridian City Gym badge.
  • Parental Abandonment: Oak apparently raises him and his sister on his own.
  • Pet the Dog: In the Gen I remakes, he gives you the Fame Checker following the Cerulean City encounter just because he feels sorry for you.
  • Privileged Rival: He's the grandson of Prof. Oak, a leading and world renowned researcher, where Red's family is relatively anonymous.
  • Recurring Boss: Blue is fought multiple times in Gen I, including as both the first trainer fight in the game and the game's Final Boss after conquering all four members of the Elite Four.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Red Oni to Red's Blue.
  • The Rival: The first and the most straightly played. The player and Blue compete to see who can become the better trainer. Blue is always a step ahead of the player no matter, and always arrogantly looking down on them, setting up a rival you want to beat.
  • Sensitive Guy and Manly Man: Zigzagged. Although Blue acts more like an aggressive, arrogant jackass compared to Red, Blue is actually more emotional and loses his temper easily while Red is usually calm and almost never shows any emotions. This is even emphasized in their new designs in Sun and Moon, where Red has a more well-built, toned appearance, while Blue looks more like a pretty boy.
  • Signature Mon: Depending on the game.
    • As a rival and Champion, his starter Pokemon is his highest-leveled Pokémon. This will always be the one with a type advantage over the players, except in Yellow where it is a Generation 1 Eeveelution.
    • In later games, he instead gets associated with the trio of Water-Fire-Grass Pokémon he uses without the starter on his team: Gyarados, Exeggutor, and Arcanine.
    • In contrast to how meta the rest of his team is, Pidgeot is in his team almost every time, having the highest representation of any team member by only being absent in Let's Go. It's also his ace in both HGSS and Masters. It may be an indication of his Hidden Depths - he can't leave behind the first Pokemon he caught.
    • He will have whichever starter has the advantage over Red's. In early promo art for Red and Green, he was always seen with the Charmander line, in contrast to Red's original Bulbasaur. However as Red has become more associated with Charizard, Blue has become more likely to have Blastoise (as seen in the main anime, Origins, and Generations.) He returns to his original Charizard when he appears in Let's Go.
    • In the first Pokemon Stadium it's Exeggutor. He has it in every possible team, even in those with Venusaur.
  • Signature Move: Trick Room as the Gym Leader in Generation IV. While only his Exeggutor knows it, it helps Exeggutor itself and its equally slow teammates (Machamp and Rhydon as well as Tyranitar in the rematches) to go first instead.
  • The Smart Guy: He's as much a Pokémon researcher as a Gym Leader in later games. It's mentioned several times that Blue travels all over the world finding and studying new Pokémon for his grandfather, and he tends to go off on tangents about Pokémon evolution and technical skills when you speak with him. In game, his Kanto team is even built around top base stats available in Gen I, barring legendaries. Exeggutor, Arcanine, and Gyrados are three replacement starters for type-coverage that are all the highest base stat total of their type. Rhydon has the highest base Attack, and Alakazam has the highest base Special. Pidgeot falls outside of this but is implied to be a sentimental pick as the first Pokemon he caught.
  • Smug Smiler: He always has a smug grin on his face to compliment his jerkassery. It's still present in later games where he's matured, however he does tone it down considerably.
  • Someone Else's Problem: Is clearly only deep within Silph Co just to challenge you when he's one warp pad away from actually trying to beat Giovanni and solve the situation himself. He doesn't even seem to care that the entire city had been taken hostage, only that you were likely going to be there and he'd take that opportunity to get in your way and show off.
  • Sore Loser: Even after he loses, he talks as if it's the player who needs to get stronger, not him (he finally begrudgingly accepts his loss after the final battle). Not so much later in the timeline, though.
  • Stealth Pun: Lost in Translation; the Kanto Gym Badges are named after colors in the Japanese version, with the Viridian Gym's Earth Badge being called the Green Badge. Blue, named Green in the Japanese version, takes over the Viridian Gym after Giovanni's departure, so Green gives you the Green Badge.
  • Super Mode: Blue can potentially have a Mega Pidgeot, Mega Alakazam, Mega Gyarados, Mega Aerodactyl, or Mega Tyranitar when faced in the Battle Tree.
  • Third-Option Adaptation: His Gym Leader team is based off of his Red and Blue team... omitting the starternote . This is to avoid giving a 'canon' choice of his (and therefore Red's) starter. Notably, he does NOT have an Eeveelution, or any other Pokémon exclusively from his team in Yellow.
  • This Cannot Be!: In the Italian version, after you beat him in the first battle of Pokémon Red and Blue, in his grandfather's laboratory.
    Blue: Cosa? Non può essere! Era il Pokémon sbagliato!Literal English translation 
    • He also does it when you beat him at the end of the game:
      NO! That can't be! You beat me at my best! After all that work to become the League champ? My reign is over already? It's not fair!
  • Time Skip: He's visibly in his late teens/early 20's in Pokémon Sun and Moon.
  • Took a Level in Badass: After his stint as Champion, he took over Giovanni's Gym and is the toughest Gym Leader of the 8 Kanto leaders (and the toughest of the 16 in the Indigo League, and possibly toughest of all the Gym leaders in the entire series). He may be second to Red, but that still makes him the second toughest trainer in the game.
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: He and Red used to be good friends, until he started being a bully for whatever reason right before Red and Blue start. Thankfully, this has largely faded by Sun and Moon, where he's back to being best friends with Red and even kinda friendly with young trainers.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: He becomes nicer by Gold and Silver. This continues in Black 2 and White 2, where despite being openly irritated about losing, he still compliments the player for being "the real deal" when defeated and congratulates them if they win the tournament, and by the time of Sun and Moon he doesn't mind losing at all.
  • The Last of These Is Not Like the Others: Unlike Giovanni, Blue has a mixture of types for his Viridian Gym battle.
  • Used to Be a Sweet Kid: The guidebook for Red and Blue explains that he was Red's best friend until shortly before the start of the game, when he become a bully. Despite this, there's still times where he talks to you like an old friend.
  • Vitriolic Best Buds: He and Red have apparently (re)developed into this by the time they appear in Sun and Moon; for his part, Blue has clearly mellowed with age.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?: A very literal example. Blue uses a Rattata against the player during their battle in Cerulean City, which evolves into a Raticate in his next battle. After that, it disappears from his team without mention.


Leaf (リーフ riifu

Voiced by: Michelle Marie (Pokémon Masters - EN)

When Pokémon Red and Blue was remade for the GBA, the games went through some drastic changes. One important change that the GBA games brought about was the ability to choose between a male or female protagonist. For some time, the closest thing she had to a Canon Name was "Leaf". note  As the female option for the Player Character, her backstory is roughly the same as Red's: a child from Pallet Town who was given the task to catch them all for the Pokédex and To Be a Master. She would also appear in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (in her FireRed/LeafGreen design) as a female option for the Pokémon Trainer character opposite of Red.

  • Adult Fear: In Masters, she's been shown to be afraid of losing her Eevee to Pokemon thieves or talent scouts.
  • Almighty Janitor: Leaf appears for the first time in Master's as part of a Pokemon Masters League tournament with an unevolved Pokemon next to Gym Leaders, Elite Four members and the like.
  • The Artifact: Inverted; she hadn't appeared alongside Red and Blue because she didn't exist in the games at the time, save for being the female option in Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen. Because of this, Red's place in the larger timeline is already established, appearing alongside Blue in challenges such as the Pokémon World Tournament and Battle Tree.
  • Canon Name: Leaf was the closest thing she had to a canon name for a good long while, owing to its status as her default name in internal data, plus the promotional name used for the female character in Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen. In fact, not long after an official statuette available in Japan cemented her name as "Leaf and Masters confirmed it further.
  • Casting a Shadow: It's worth noting that four Pokémon on her team in Let's Go! came equipped with Dark-type moves. She apparently knew what she was getting into, going spelunking for Mewtwo.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Green herself. She was a promotional character made purely to round out the trio, that few remember since the only evidence of her is early official artwork and Pokémon Adventures.
    • Her redesign in Let's Go takes some elements from her Generation III appearance, incorporating a blue collar and an identical satchel, while also incorporating the Little Black Dress of her promotional design.
    • Though not explicitly called attention to with Let's Go not giving trainers unique Key Stone accessories, her white bracelets mimic the design of the Mega Bangle in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire while also being a reference to the White Gloves of her promotional design.
    • Green's team includes a Clefable. Clefairy was planned as the mascot of the series just like Green was originally planned to be a player character.
    • As Leaf she uses an Eevee as a nod to the female protagnist choice Elaine having one in most of the promo art for Let's Go.
  • Continuity Nod: She uses an Eevee as a nod to the female protagnist choice Elaine having one in most of the promo art for Let's Go.
  • Cuteness Proximity: She thinks her Eevee is just the cutest thing in the world in Masters!
  • Dangerously Short Skirt: Her skirt is barely a third of the way down her calves.
  • Declaration of Protection: Makes one of these when she uses her Sync Move in Masters. She's also quite protective of her Eevee outside of battle.
  • Decomposite Character: Leaf and Green are treated like separate characters despite looking similar. The general consensus seems to be that Leaf is the female player character, with Green as the NPC.
  • Even the Girls Want Her: Due to the unchanged dialogue, flirty comments meant for Red from female NPCs are still directed towards her.
  • Heroic Mime: Never speaks as a protagonist bar some internal dialogue moments and possibly when talking to Copycat.
  • Little Black Dress: Her original design, complete with white gloves and matching shoes.
  • Meaningful Name: Like the other OG Kanto trainers she takes a canon name from a Version name, rather than a real name like every other Generation. Either the third spot in the Red/Green/Blue trio; or the remake name Leaf. LeafGreen itself may have been a solution internationally, but that would end up as LeafBlue in Japan.
  • Pink Girl, Blue Boy: In official art only, she gets the pink Vs. Seeker while Red gets the blue one. Averted in the games, in which the player character's Vs. Seeker is blue regardless of gender.
  • Put on a Bus: Though it took Generation I being remade for her to get on the bus, with very few appearances since, her bus trip finally ended when Masters reintroduced her.
  • Signature Mon:
    • Of the Kanto starters, she's most often seen with the Squirtle line in early promo art for Red and Green. She also has Blastoise in Pokémon Adventures and Let's Go as a nod to her original artwork. This carries into her Kotobukiya ArtFx J figurine.
    • In Pokémon Masters, her signature 'mon is an Eevee, playing her reintroduction to the series in Let's Go where the female protagonist (in this case Elaine) was associated with Eevee to contrast the male Chase and Pikachu. Elaine and Chase are mostly stand ins for Red's adventure in Gen's I and III, without a lot of unique traits to themselves, and many even thought of them as redesigns until it became clear that Red, Blue, and Green all existed as NPCS. Eevee even has a move called Let's Go in this game.
  • White Gloves: Leaf's original Gen I design had white gloves, which were later referenced for her Pokémon Adventures counterpart. Unlike her Little Black Dress, these don't appear in her Let's Go counterpart Green, though she does wear a pair of white bracelets in an apparent nod to the gloves.

Let's Go!

    "Chase" ("Kakeru") 

Chase / Kakeru (カケル kakeru)
The male main character of Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!.
  • Kid Hero: He is young and presumably eleven.
  • Puni Plush: In a contrast to the other protagonists of earlier games starting from Gen III onward, their proportions are more rounded and more child-like, making them appear to be under ten.

    "Elaine" ("Ayumi") 

Elaine / Ayumi (アユミ ayumi)
The female main character of Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!.
  • Kid Hero: She is young and presumably eleven.
  • Puni Plush: In a contrast to the other protagonists of earlier games starting from Gen III onward, their proportions are more rounded and more child-like, making them appear to be under ten.

    Trace (Shin) 

Trace / Shin (シン shin)
The rival for Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!. While he's similar to Blue in role, he's much less confrontational.
  • Ascended Extra: Catches the Cubone that was Marowak's baby in the Generation I games and their remakes.
  • Continuity Nod: His Eevee evolving into Jolteon is a nod to the "hard" result in Yellow, which happens if the player wins their first two Rival battles.
  • Friendly Rival: In comparison to Blue's mocking and insulting the player, Trace is much kinder. He even outright gives you tips and buys items for you. It's even straight up said "Meet your friendly rival" in one of the trailers regarding him.
  • Friend to All Living Things: A pretty easy going and relaxed person, who also befriends and captures a Cubone that Team Rocket kidnapped, eventually evolving it and using it on his team. Following his Champion battle, Professor Oak even speculates that he lost because he loved his Pokémon too much to seriously push them in battle.
  • Spiky Hair: Not quite to the extent of Blue, but still present. It's also a more realistic wood brown instead of Blue's orange-brown hair.
  • Super Mode: His Pidgeot will Mega Evolve for the Champion battle and following rematches. And unlike all other trainers who use Mega Evolution who save their Mega for last, he sends out Pidgeot first.

     Green (Blue) 

Green / Blue (ブルー buruu)

The second character based off of the unused female protagonist from Red and Green.

Leaf's origins are a bit older than the remakes suggest. She's based on a female trainer seen in early artwork for Red and Blue, who was left unimplemented because of memory limitations. The Kanto trio would finally be fully rounded out when Let's Go introduced Green alongside Red and Blue, using a design similar to her originally planned appearance, and under the name Green to match her counterparts. Despite being similar looking to Leaf and fulfilling the same role, they are not the same character and have different Canon Names.

  • Almighty Janitor: Green appears without explanation in Let's Go as one of the toughest Pokémon Trainers around.
  • Bonus Boss: She challenges the player after they capture Mewtwo, irritated that they caught it first. After being defeated, she reluctantly hands over the Mewtwonite X and Y stones before teasing the player by attempting to capture them by throwing Poké Balls at them. After this she can be rematched once a day in Cerulean City though she'll still throw Poké Balls at the player to "capture" them.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • Green herself. She was a promotional character made purely to round out the trio, that few remember since the only evidence of her is early official artwork and Pokémon Adventures.
    • Green takes some elements from Leaf, incorporating a blue collar and an identical satchel, while also incorporating the Little Black Dress of her promotional design.
    • Though not explicitly called attention to with Let's Go not giving trainers unique Key Stone accessories, her white bracelets mimic the design of the Mega Bangle in Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire while also being a reference to the White Gloves of her promotional design.
    • Green's team includes a Clefable. Clefairy was planned as the mascot of the series just like Green was originally planned to be a player character.
  • Decomposite Character: Let's Go introduced Green. She's based on the same concept art as Leaf but has a different Canon Name. It's generally agreed that Leaf is the player character's name, but otherwise it's Green.
  • Little Black Dress: She wears a black dress like the Gen I concept art that inspired her, with the addition of a blue collar along with a slit in the side and being even shorter make it resemble an oversized shirt more than a dress.
  • Modesty Shorts: She wears blue shorts underneath her black dress.
  • Troll: Teases the player by throwing Poké Balls at them as if they're a Pokémon after they've beaten her, asking if they (and the Mewtwo the player's just caught) will join her Pokémon team, before smiling and running off.
  • Yandere: A very lighthearted version in Let's Go. After beating her, her tossing Poké Balls at the player in order to get them and their Mewtwo to join her team has a strange interpretation of the trope.

How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: