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If a new leak is to be believed, it looks like Ash Ketchum's famous Pikachu from the long running Pokémon anime show might finally be ready to evolve into a Raichu after 23 seasons.
Those of us that are of a certain age will remember fondly the bromance between Ash and his little electric mouse thing Pikachu, and their many enjoyable trials and tribulations together.
One of the understandings at the core of that relationship, was the idea that Pikachu didn't need to evolve into the technically more powerful Raichu, in order to beat gym leaders into a pulp and journey the world of Pokémon far and wide.
There's probably some kind of message about being perfect as you are and not giving in to peer pressure to be accepted or something. I wouldn't know, I evolved into a Raichu years ago due to crippling peer pressure.
According to the Anipoke Fandom Twitter account, a leaked description for an upcoming episode of the show called "I Got Pikachu" hints that it might finally be time for our little yellow hero to grab life by the Thunderstones and grow up.
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The summary reads: "There's a Pikachu Outbreak-chu!! Satoshi's Pikachu finally evolves into a Raichu?! During a new investigation, Go attempts to get a Pikachu and ends up meeting a very obliging female one!"
I should explain quickly. Satoshi, is the Japanese name of the character we in the west know as Ash Ketchum, and the latest iteration of the anime, is called Pokémon Journeys. In Journeys, Ash (Satoshi) is joined by an up-and-coming new trainer named Goh (or Go). We all square? Okay, cool.
In the episode it seems our group stumble upon a mass gathering of Pikachu who are digging for Thunderstones in order to evolve themselves, whereupon Ash's Pikachu apparently has some sort of awakening (see also: massive crush on a female Pikachu probably) and decides now is the time.
Something in me says that it's highly unlikely the showrunners will actually do away with the lovable electric mouse after 23 years of successfully marketing it into oblivion. I just can't see it happening.
That being said, Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon did make the bold step of finally allowing Ash to win a Pokémon League after two decades of trying, so who knows? Either way, this is very firmly in the speculative information column, and we'll have to wait and see what happens when the episode finally airs.
Featured Image Credit: Nintendo / The Pokémon Company International
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