Image: The Pokémon Company

The Pokémon Company has confirmed that Ash Ketchum's Pokémon journey is about to come to an end. In a video posted on Twitter, it's been announced that 11 special episodes - dubbed 'Aim to be a Pokémon Master' - will air in Japan starting January 13th, 2023 and will mark the final chapter in Ash and Pikachu's story.

It's the end of an era, to be sure. Ash's journey started all the way back in April 1997 with the 'Indigo League', featuring classic episodes like "Showdown in Pewter City", "Charmander – The Stray Pokémon", and "Battle Aboard the St. Anne". The iconic protagonist featured in dozens of feature movies and even made some subtle appearances in the video game series.

Alongside confirmation that Ash's journey is nearing its end, The Pokémon Company also announced that a brand new anime series wil premiere in Japan in April 2023 and star two new protagonists called Riko and Roy. Little else has been detailed regarding the new series, but we do know that the Paldea starter Pokémon will also feature.

So that's it, then! No more Ash. How bizarre... We'll miss the little guy, but we're sure he'll continue to live out his days as a perpetual 10-year old alongside Pikachu in peace. Thanks for everything, Ash!

Aim to be a Pokemon Master
Japanese poster for Pokémon - Aim to be a Pokémon Master — Image: The Pokémon Company

What do make of Ash Ketchum's departure from the Pokémon anime? Are you looking forward to meeting the two new protagonists? Share your thoughts in the comments below!