Pikachu is set to return in the next Pokemon anime series, although he’ll have a new look and a brand new partner called Friede alongside him.
It was recently announced that Ash Ketchum and his loyal Pikachu will soon be leaving the long-running Pokemon anime series, making way for two new protagonists known as Liko and Roy.
While fans around the world were saddened by the news, it might not be too surprising to find out that this isn’t the last we’ve seen of Pikachu in the anime series – he is the franchise mascot, after all.
A fresh announcement from The Pokemon Company has confirmed that Pikachu will appear in the next series alongside a new partner called Professor Friede, who will assist Liko and Roy in their battles.
This version of Pikachu is known as Captain Pikachu and wears an adorable captain’s hat, so it seems safe to assume it’s an entirely different one from Ash’s Pikachu.
In a statement, Vice President of Marketing for The Pokemon Company, Taito Okiura, highlighted that Pikachu has been “synonymous with the Pokemon franchise” for 27 years and that isn’t about to change.
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“Fans will be able to embark on a new journey of action, adventure and friendship through the eyes of unique characters like Friede and Captain Pikachu when the next animated series begins premiering later this year,” they said.
“We look forward to seeing this beloved Pokémon continue to have a significant presence in the animated series and remain an icon for the brand.”
The next series of the Pokemon anime – which is currently untitled – will be set in the Paldea region and will feature new creatures from the Scarlet & Violet games including Sprigatito, Fuecoco, and Quaxly.
The new series will debut in Japan on April 14, 2023, but no air date has been confirmed for other countries yet.