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What do you think a "Pokémon Master" really is?

Discussion in 'Pokémon Animé Discussion' started by FlygontheRavager, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. FlygontheRavager

    FlygontheRavager #1 Pokémon Anime Fan!

    For the past 20+ years, we've been watching Ash on his journey to become a "Pokémon Master." There have been many tidbits of information dropped over the years, which have allowed fans to form their own theories and speculations as to what exactly a Pokemon Master is and how one goes about becoming one. However, even after all this time, we still don't have an outright, clear-cut answer. The Pokemon Company themselves have gone on record saying that "it is the intent of the Pokémon creators that such questions be left to the imaginations and interpretations of Pokémon fans, adding more excitement and mystery to the Pokémon universe."

    So...what do YOU think Ash's dream really is? What does being a Pokemon Master actually mean?
     
  2. AuraChannelerChris

    AuraChannelerChris 2 Cool 4 8-Bit School

    I fully believe the requirement for it means you HAVE to have a Pikachu.

    And that you don't need to catch them all.

    And that you don't need to win leagues.

    And that you don't need to win other competitions.

    ...

    Let's be honest. It's bull**** to its finest.
     
    Pokegirl Fan~ and keepitsimple like this.
  3. keepitsimple

    keepitsimple Frank/Nona/Sam/Porkins F4

    years ago i always assumed it was interchangeable with champion except worldwide instead of one region

    kind of like where Red was at in the Johto games before the player character ruins that for him

    good to know it apparently means absolutely nothing tho lol. but that has been pretty obvious for years

    tbh this just looks like an excuse for "pokemon master" being a meaningless buzzword created with the purpose of giving the illusion that OS had a plot
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2018
  4. Genaller

    Genaller Just don’t care about SM anymore

    For starters Ash confirms in the final episode of DP that the title of Pokémon Master is something that lies beyond the title of Champion Master meaning that becoming a regional champion is 1 pre-requisite to becoming a Pokémon Master. If we assume that the definition of Pokémon Master is the same in the anime and the new Pokémon AU in the movies then it would seem that there’s a lot more to becoming a Pokémon Master than just being 1 of the strongest trainers in the world (though that’s still a necessary condition). My best guess (here’s where the speculating starts) is that the other requirement is to meet with as many Pokémon as you can; understanding their mannerisms and culture, emotionally connecting (a.k.a bonding) with them, and helping them improve themselves. Obviously no one can do this with literally every Pokémon though a Pokémon Master should in-general be very in-tune with most Pokémon whom they come across by which I mean that they’re quickly able to gain a deep understanding of them on both a physiological and psychological lvl (E4s and Champions are shown to be very proficient at this).
     
    Shadao, LilligantLewis, JC317 and 4 others like this.
  5. Pokegirl Fan~

    Pokegirl Fan~ If you try to hold my hand I'll slug you

    It's probably a combination of winning leagues and catching all the Pokemon, which will never happen, so yeah I doubt that Ash is ever going to become one since he's not winning leagues and doesn't catch them all.
     
  6. keepitsimple

    keepitsimple Frank/Nona/Sam/Porkins F4

    i don't think it has anything to do with catching all the pokemon because since day 1 he hasn't attempted to do that, otherwise he would have been trying to catch every pokemon he saw
     
    LilligantLewis likes this.
  7. AznKei

    AznKei Pump It Up Prime 2 Girl

    Probably the producers/writers didn't want him to capture them all because it would be too much to cast them all for their limited studio budgets.

    But yeah, the Pokemon Master meaning was more significant during the Indigo League because it was his 1st journey so the anticipation was high on him at that time, unlike the later series where his leagues loss were more predictable.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2018
    keepitsimple likes this.
  8. keepitsimple

    keepitsimple Frank/Nona/Sam/Porkins F4

    that only helps my point that it wouldn't be part of his goal but yeah agreed
     
  9. Zoruagible

    Zoruagible Lover of underrated characters

    What it should mean: Becoming one of the world's strongest trainers like Lance and Cynthia are

    What it really means: be forever 10 and have your dreams eternally crushed
     
  10. satopi

    satopi All hail Satomine Night!

    I think being a Pokémon Master, in the case of Satoshi, is the importance of bonds. At first, Ash thought that by winning the Pokémon League, that'll make him a Pokémon Master until he later on expanded it to being one step closer to his dream meaning that with all the intense training and bonds he shares with his Pokémon that it'll be considered a proven accomplishment, sort of like how he had to put his ideals to the test when it came to his rivalry with Paul. I think Ash enjoys simply strengthening his bond with and befriending Pokémon all over with the use of getting stronger together, traveling together, and getting through obstacles along the way. Regardless of whether he actually wins or loses the League became unimportant as he's had fun. He simply enters the Pokémon League, because he enjoys battling against strong trainers and getting an earned reward, learning from his selfish younger self where he always got pity badges and thinking only about winning would mean being the best of the best. So to me, being a Pokémon Master isn't about winning as many Leagues as you can or catching as much Pokémon as you can, but understanding Pokémon in general. Discovering their nature, seeing what makes it tick, looking through it's perspective, these are values that Ash held onto and learned throughout his journey. It could be connected to why he thinks science is amazing. Ash just loves learning new things. After all, in XY, he said that with each experience, it helps him along the way which is why he starts anew with each region he goes to.
     
    FlygontheRavager likes this.
  11. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    One has to remember that the whole 'Pokemon Master' goal was designed by Shudo to intentionally be a fake non-specific goal that Ash was supposed to grow out of. As time passed, the writers tried to play it straight, though by around XY, they seemed to start playing on the sisythean nature of it again, though in a more uplifting way. Sure Ash hasn't really gained any official upgrades in his goal, but he has developed into a more rounded and versatile person as a by product. I don't think any of his Pokemon or closest friends give a crap if Ash never becomes an official Master or wins a league, he already gets what being a 'master' is all about.

    I feel like Ash these days is kinda stuck in an existential crisis like Team Rocket, sticking to some badly thought out life goal, while ignoring the fact he has gained tons of other accomplishments and talents in the act of trying and failing at it. Early on when he was a prideful insecure kid, it made sense for him to choose the most grandiose and high tier moniker as a trainer (if not the best thought out one) though I think now, he just holds onto it for the sense of thrill, whatever direction it is, it gives him the adrenaline and drive in life he wants.
     
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2018
  12. Ignition

    Ignition Blessed picture

    I think it falls under these criteria:
    -fully understand the way Pokémon work: with Trainers, each other, their ecosystem, their quirks, etc.
    -advanved battle proficiency
    -having gone through several trials (not Alola's, more like general trials that tests you and your Pokémon) for endurance, knowledge, bravery, etc.
    -winning the infamous Champions League
    Overall, I think the point of a PM is not about strength in terms of battle, but the experience of the journey to get there. Taking in the vast world of Pokémon and seeing how they are so different from one another. The openings always point to this in the lyrics and imagery with Ash being in montage clips traveling and seeing several Pokémon. Notice how Ash is always participating in non Gym/League events (SM makes it the most obvious)? It's basically a "it's about the journey not the destination" goal so kids can experience their world to the fullest
     
    Litleonid and FlygontheRavager like this.
  13. Litleonid

    Litleonid Well-Known Member

    Honestly, I just believe becoming a Pokemon Master means you have conquered the Elite 4 and the region's Champion.
     
  14. pokedigijedi

    pokedigijedi Saiyan Jedi

    WARNING a negative opinion incoming!!!! If you disagree with it that's fine everyone is entitled to their own opinion

    Honestly at this point I feel becoming a Pokemon Master is just an excuse to travel the world, they haven't really told us what it means so at this point I feel its just an excuse, an empty meaningless title just so Ash can travel the world aimlessly.

    If it does have meaning which I doubt at this point then Ash as far as I am concerned is just delusional to think he can accomplish it
     
  15. FlygontheRavager

    FlygontheRavager #1 Pokémon Anime Fan!

    I mostly agree with you, especially since in “I Choose You,” Ash outright states that he battles in order to make friends with Pokémon. Whether that applies to the regular-universe Ash can’t be said for sure, but given the way he goes about training and battling, I think it’s very likely he feels the same way.

    However, I also think that a part of being a Pokémon Master is forming deep bonds with other people. During his travels, Ash has met many characters from all walks of life, and he has gained the respect and friendship of pretty much all of them (besides some of the villains, of course). Those interactions, I believe, also culminate towards his goal of becoming a Master.
     
    Spider-Phoenix and satopi like this.
  16. nickdt

    nickdt Well-Known Member

    For me, a Pokemon Master is someone who MASTERS all the types and knows how too work with all different Pokemon (Speedy and Tank).
     
  17. satopi

    satopi All hail Satomine Night!

    Yeah, that too. He treasures his bonds with his friends too as he said to Pikachu in episode 20. I kind of like to think Dragon Master is similar to Pokémon Master, I mean it's the only one we've had that has "[insert] Master" in it. I feel like Ash was influenced at an early age, not just with watching people battle when he was little but also his close relationships with Gary & Prof Oak.
     
  18. DatsRight

    DatsRight Well-Known Member

    Concerning Pokemon friends I definitely think so, I think human friends is something he needed a recent checkup on, since while he was used to having company along his travels, it felt like they were becoming more passive and formal. He liked them enough, but they didn't feel as close, and he just let them do their thing while he did his. XY felt like him at his most 'automatic', while his Pokemon had their usual turmoils that brought out his occasional emotional side, the companions were at their most laid back and their were no big distractions for him along his quest (all the others' agendas were kinda restricted for them so he couldn't really take part).

    SM felt like a huge refresh for him, having far more time to immerse into the lives and activities of those around him, and truly understand who they were. There was an awkwardness around Lillie in the AF arc in particular that I thought demonstrated this, he was used to emoting around Pokemon more than people and things just being a laid back journey with some antics and games with the humans. A couple times he was accidentally careless or insensitive around Lillie I think hit him hard and he started to really care about her problems and go out of his comfort zone to watch over her. She wasn't just another independent companion, she was a troubled girl that needed direct support and love.

    This is something I think kinda rings well with how Ash was originally set out, since he was implied to be something of an outcast and a 'loser' in Kanto's harsh community before becoming a trainer, hoping becoming a Master would give him some prestige and approval. As time passed he calmed, but became more used to bonding with Pokemon, who he had realised treat him with respect and loyalty (most of the time). Now we're in Alola, where Ash is once again something of a weirdo and a butt monkey (if a more experienced less insecure one), but within a community that is very loving and close knit, and welcomes Ash with open arms into their family, which is becoming more of a pleasant distraction for him. It is fitting that it is also a region that thus far puts much less emphasis on becoming stronger and getting an occupation/life goal as quickly as possible, a total opposite to Kanto. Ash started off miles ahead of the Alola companions, and has actually stayed that way for the large part, but he still stops to have fun and bond with them, finding lots of mutuality between some of them.
     
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2018
    satopi and FlygontheRavager like this.
  19. Twilight-Kun

    Twilight-Kun Pokemon World Champion

    Setting a goal for yourself and reaching it

    A Pokémon Master is whatever you make of it
     
  20. AuraChannelerChris

    AuraChannelerChris 2 Cool 4 8-Bit School

    Can't we just agree that made-up title actually just translates to "adventurer."
     
    pokedigijedi likes this.

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