Ash and Pikachu's final chapter starts in just a couple of days, and fans are barely holding it together

Pikachu
(Image credit: The Pokemon Company)

The final chapter of Ash and Pikachu's arc in the Pokemon anime is about to kick off, but fans have started to say their goodbyes ahead of time. 

It's probably common knowledge by now that Ash and Pikachu will be leaving the Pokemon anime after being the stars of it for the last 25 years. The pair will say their final goodbyes via a miniseries which is set to premiere in Japan first on January 13, 2023. Although fans have been paying tribute to the fictional 10-year-old boy and his Pokemon pal since the news broke last month, now that the day is drawing closer, an even bigger outpouring of love is coming in thick and fast. 

Pokemon fans all over the world have been showing their reaction to the news in various ways. Several people have posted tributes to the character, thanking him for being part of their lives growing up. This even includes Ash's English voice actor for the past 17 years, Sarah Natochenny, who shared a TikTok documenting their Pokemon Journey (opens in new tab) which has had even the smallest of Pokemon fans tearing up (it's me, I'm the one tearing up). 

Others have gone in a totally different direction deciding instead to make memes of the situation, which is helping with the heartbreak just as much. We've shared some of our favorites below including the Grim Reaper 'was I a good boy?' meme, but tailored to the Pokemon trainer, as well as an edit that shows Ash joining fellow retired anime protagonists from the 90s like Yugi Muto from Yu-Gi-Oh! and Sailor Moon. 

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ash_ketchum_is_the_time_traveler from r/pokemon

There is some good news to come out of this whole ordeal though. Earlier this week, Japanese outlets began sharing some of the details of Ash and Pikachu's last season of the Pokemon anime. According to reports, Ash and Pikachu's final arc in the Pokemon anime will feature a remake of the original theme song. Not only this but many of the friends (including Brock and Misty) and Pokemon Ash has met along the way are also set to make an appearance. So be prepared to get through a box of tissues before the first episode has even finished. 

Find out how the team here at GamesRadar+ is taking the news: Pokemon is retiring Ash and Pikachu, and I'm a little heartbroken

Hope Bellingham
News Writer

After studying Film Studies and Creative Writing at university, I was lucky enough to land a job as an intern at Player Two PR where I helped to release a number of indie titles. I then got even luckier when I became a Trainee News Writer at GamesRadar+ before being promoted to a fully-fledged News Writer after a year and a half of training.  My expertise lies in Animal Crossing: New Horizons, cozy indies, and The Last of Us, but especially in the Kingdom Hearts series. I'm also known to write about the odd Korean drama for the Entertainment team every now and then.