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Top 5 Pokémon Girls (From the Anime)

Updated on March 21, 2017

Pokemon Overview

Alright, admit it. If you were born in the 90's like I was (or perhaps if you parented a kid then), there's a good chance you loved Pokémon. The games, the shows, the trading cards, the whole shebang.

Veterans of the anime probably best remember the classic adventures of Ash, Misty, and Brock. Since then, Ash has met several new friends, explored many different lands, and somehow still manages to remain 10 years old. Have any of his new female companions topped original tomboy Misty? We'll find out by counting down the five best girls within the Pokemon anime!

Dawn
Dawn

5. Dawn

Our first character is Ash's third female companion, from the Diamond and Pearl series, Dawn.

Strengths as a character:

  • Kind but willing to stand up to injustice
  • Actually defeated prior companion May in a Contest battle (usually, more-experienced original characters best new ones)
  • Her Piplup brings all the boys to the yard

Dawn's low on the list because she didn't add much to Pokémon. She's hardheaded and girly, and while that's fine, we already experienced that with May.

It doesn't help that Diamond and Pearl is one of the lesser Pokémon series, with mediocre voice acting and stiff jokes (at least in the English dub). Thus, Dawn isn't my favorite, but she has her moments, and her friendship with Ash works well enough.

Iris
Iris

4. Iris

Iris, from Pokemon Best Wishes, snatches fourth place.

Strengths:

  • Strong battler (has defeated both Ash and Dawn)
  • Shows girls that Dragons (her signature type) aren't just for boys
  • Doesn't give me nightmares like Best Wishes companion Cilan does


Despite these boons, throughout the show, we see her frequently berate and insult Ash; her trademark insult is calling Ash a little kid. Not exactly the most supportive, are you, Iris? Additionally, she has the misfortune of appearing in what most fans consider to be the weakest season, keeping her from rising any higher in the countdown.

By the way, I'll admit I'm no fashion expert, but Iris, what's up with your hair?

May
May

3. May

May, the second girl to travel with Ash, aspires to become the best Pokémon Coordinator ever. She joins Ash in the Advanced Generations series as an inexperienced Trainer, and he helps teach her how to care for Pokémon.

Strengths:

  • Interestingly, didn't care for Pokemon much at first
  • Grew exponentially as a Trainer and Coordinator thoughout the series
  • Her inexperience helped show us as Ash's progress as a Trainer as he mentored her


Like most of the series, I'd recommend watching the English subbed version of Advanced Generations. However, if you go with the dub, you amusingly get to hear voice actress Veronica Taylor talk to herself (she plays both Ash and May). Overall, May's not my favorite, but she's a worthy and interesting companion.

Plus, she and I have basically the same reaction when someone tries to steal our food.

Misty
Misty

2. Misty

The first friend to join Ash, Misty was one of the original trio of protagonists. She raises Water type Pokémon and proves a capable battler. She acts like a tomboy, but also shows a more sensitive side, which gives her some nice depth as a character.

Strengths:

  • Active Trainer (not just a damsel in distress)
  • Developed feelings for Ash
  • Stars in arguably the best seasons of the show
  • Contributes to lovably-bad jokes like this


I like Misty, but one of her few problems is that she eventually captures a baby Pokémon called Togepi, and starts to spend most of her time caring for it. This means the tough and capable Pokémon Trainer we knew largely gives way for a sideline cheerleader to support Ash, losing her spunk and charm.

I know some fans will want her as number one, and I respect that, but for me there's one girl who tops even Misty.

Serena
Serena

1. Serena

In a way, Serena IS the original companion to Ash. No, she wasn't in the first Pokémon season, but she encountered and befriended Ash in a touching scene years before Misty did.

Strengths:

  • Compassionate
  • Has an old history with Ash, and her crush on him keeps things interesting
  • Easy to relate with her struggle to find herself
  • Actually changes her hair and outfit halfway through her season. Now that's rare in anime!

Like many of us, Serena isn't sure of what she wants to do with her life. Her mother wishes her to become a Pokémon Racer (similar to a real-world horse jockey), and we experience Serena disobey her parent's wishes, then eventually decide to become a Pokémon Performer. Pretty cool to see a realistic mother-daughter relationship explored. Okay, so this isn't Citizen Kane, but for Pokemon it's nice to see some extra layers of depth.

For her quirkiness, empathetic nature, and deveopment, she's my favorite companion to Ash.

Your Favorite

Which Pokemon girl do you prefer?

See results

Pokemon's Future

You know, I'm really struggling not to just Ash's female companions his girlfriends, due to the implications.

Regardless, even though the Pokémon anime is geared towards children, even adults and old fans can appreciate some of the depth, charming music, and diversity of more recent seasons.

For now, feel free to vote for your favorite, and I'll see you at our next countdown!

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    • Stevennix2001 profile image

      Steven Escareno 2 years ago

      Interesting hub. I must admit that I never got past the first pokémon series, but it's interesting to know that Ash gained quite a few companions along his journeys.

    • Jeremy Gill profile image
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      Jeremy Gill 2 years ago from Louisiana

      You're not alone, Steven. A lot of fans left when Misty did. I wonder how things would have turned out if they'd kept her?

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      Mudkip979 2 years ago

      Dawn is the best serena sucks waiting 60 episodes to see a watered down pokémon contest is not interesting

    • Jeremy Gill profile image
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      Jeremy Gill 2 years ago from Louisiana

      We all have our own opinions, Mudkip; if you like Dawn best, that's perfectly fine. I believe that Serena has a lot of interesting character development, but she might not be for everyone.

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      Sal 23 months ago

      Misty got boring in the Johto saga and most fans actually didn't care she left, beyond shippers or fanboys. May was probably the best for the reasons you mentioned and her funny personality, although Dawn was cool too.

      Serena is a mixed bag, I like her crush on Ash but the writers barely do anything else with her. She almost feels like a more laid-back version of Dawn

    • nipster profile image

      nipster 23 months ago

      Misty, and May make great ships for Ash.

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      Wednoct 21 months ago

      What the hell?! In what way is DP the worst series? Excuse me, but I think we didn't watch the same anime. DP is by far one of the best thanks to the large amount of character development: Ash wasn't a noob anymore and he learnt from his mistakes whenever he lost a battle. The only detrimental factor was the large amount of filler, but this is balanced with Dawn's side-story, which is (at least in the Japanese version) handled with the same degree of importance as Ash's plot. Which leads me to the next point: how on earth is Dawn worse than fricking Iris? I mean, shite, Iris is Misty 2.0 with an annoyance expansion pack! She can't be anything less than third!

      However, I must say I've got no objections towards Serena; at first she was fourth in my list (Iris is dead last, of course) because while I liked her at first, I thought her character became shallow as episodes passed without her doing anything other than gushing over Ash. But damn, Serena quickly took the lead this year. Really quick.

      My list:

      5. Iris

      4. Misty

      2 & 3. A toss between Dawn and May. I like both of them almost equally.

      1. Serena, so far.

    • Jeremy Gill profile image
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      Jeremy Gill 21 months ago from Louisiana

      Take it easy, Wednoct. To each their own, right?

      Personally, I found DP less interesting. Ash was basically the same as the previous season, Dawn was too similar to May, and the voice acting (at least in English) was awful. I'm not a big fan of Iris, but she was at least an attempt at something new, it just didn't play out well. But if you disagree, that's fine; we're all entitled to our own opinions.

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      Zad 21 months ago

      Why do you keep saying a lot of fans left when Misty did? The reason the writers permamently dropped Misty and didn't bring her back is exactly because the majority of the fandom didn't care. May was more popular than Misty a decade ago, and that's why Misty was gradually phased out.

      You really think the writers would have given Misty such an early permanent departure in the show if people wanted her back over May like Brock over Tracey? Of course not.

    • Jeremy Gill profile image
      Author

      Jeremy Gill 21 months ago from Louisiana

      Zad, I think in the long term, more fans would have stayed with the show if they'd kept her. But we can agree to disagree.

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      15-11-2002 17 months ago

      Misty is the best

    • Jeremy Gill profile image
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      Jeremy Gill 17 months ago from Louisiana

      Agreed, Misty was pretty awesome!

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      ClearWing 9 months ago

      Good list!! Imo Best Pokégirls go

      5. Iris - I haven't seen the Best Wishes series, so I can't say much about her.

      4. Misty - Original Pokégirl but she didn't really do anything or changed much at all over the course of her journery with Ash. She began stalking him for a bike than forgot about it and became Ash's Co-Mentor alongside Brock but once Togepi came along she didn't do much. Ash had shown improvement from Kanto to Johto in terms of his skills as a trainer and didn't need her or Brock to hold his hand anymore. So without the mentor role she didn't do a lot and was pretty much just...there like a piece of furniture. She didn't work on her goal of being a Water Pokémon master much. She started off strong but got stale after a while. She may be the original Pokégirl but nostalgia can't save Misty here.

      (Bonnie): She's actually developed and mature really well over the course of XY(Z). Plus she's adorable and that Brock-Esques Running Gag of hers is a combination of cute and hilarious.

      3. Dawn or May - I'll start with May: She started as a bit of a selfish character not even liking Pokémon and using them as an excuse to travel the world, but she found coordinating along the way. She was inexperienced and naïve and a bit selfish like I said but she grew into a good trainer in her own right, better coordinator, and wound up adoring Pokémon when her travels with Ash ended. She did have moments when she developed a big head/ego and a loss would be required to set her straight but she was still great. Plus I like the dynamic she had with Ash forming a strong Student-Mentor bond with him.

      2. Dawn or May: She already knew what she wanted to do and had lots of confidence to do so which ultimately caused her defeat at two separate contest back to back which shook up her confidence and made her skip a contest or two I believe. Afterwards she changed up her entire approach to contest and ultimately found greater success than May ever did as a coordinator. Her Pokémon didn't have much personality aside from Piplup & Mamoswine but that's about it. Dawn's dynamic with Ash is probably my favorite of Ash and all of the other Pokégirls. I loved how they were best friends or having a relationship akin to that twin siblings.

      1. Serena - I can't say enough good things about her. There's more to Serena than a girl who has a crush on Ash. At first before finding her goal she didn't much aside from try to get Ash's attention but after deciding to be a performer she's shown more character development than most of the other girls that have traveled with Ash. I know I said the dynamic of Ash and Dawn is my favorite of the Pokégirls but I think Serena ties with Dawn for my favorite dynamic a Pokégirl has with Ash. Not because I ship the two (Admittedly I'm a HUGE amourshipper and I'm proud to be)!! Imo the relationship of Ash and Serena is imo the most heartwarming of the girls and Ash. I love their interactions how they motivate each other to go the extra mile: Ash is Serena's prime inspiration and his never give attitude was instilled into her and has saved her from defeat multiple times or it gave her strength to press on forward. Serena has been a key motivator for Ash this time around and does seem to motivate Ash more than previous girls did. Alexa outright said Serena was an unexpected source of inspiration Ash needed to get him going after he was defeated by Viola. At that point he was questioning how he would defeat her and seemed to be on the break of giving up but Serena TWICE motivated him enough to win that battle, again with Korrina, and more recently with Wulfric where the one and only argument they had took a big toll on them both but ultimately snapped Ash out of the worst depression he's ever been in and helped him remember why he REALLY became a trainer than master Ash-Greninja since their argument helped clear his head of all the negativity he had dwelling in it at the time. Serena is my favorite Pokégirl hands down.

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      Hi 9 months ago

      Serena sucks and i wish she cjoked on strawberries and nutella!!!! Shes a brat who is obsessed with Ash! A jerk to her pokemon! And her haircut sucks balls she also looks stupid when she blushes!!!!!!!!!!! GAAAAAAHHHH CHOKE ON NUTELLA SERENA!!!!!!!!!!!!

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      foxy 8 months ago

      i hate misty, im re watching the anime form the very beginning and shes awful, she barely battles, half of the time all she does is insult ash or brock or starts to hurt the feelings of pokemon around her and even when she's told she's hurting their feelings she doesnt care. She tells ash how to be a better trainer or how bad hes doing but she has no right when she doesnt fight with her pokemon or train them the majority of the time during the series and then during johto all she does is look after togepi while still commenting on what ash does and even then she only got togepi because when it was hatching she snatched it off ash and so then she was the first thing togepi saw. i find myself just calling her a bit of a bitch half of the time because she isnt even helpful, not even during the team rocket battles, i dont understand why people think shes the best

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      Dash 7 months ago

      Hmm, interesting list - You made some interesting points, although I think there's a few things to add:

      6) Iris - Yep: unsupportive, bad style, no chemistry with other characters. Plus while the writers were trying to do something different, her background and goals are all very vague, and while we see her go after them, there's nothing real tangable to say where she's going, aside from becoming better. All in all, there's no real reason for her to be there.

      5) Bonnie - She's great in providing the comic relief, has a great character, develops massively, and while she isn't on any sort of mission, she ends up being important, saving the world from destruction.

      Her real strength though is her love for Pokemon, which really shines through at different points.

      Heck if anyone needs to replace Ash as the 10-year-old main character, then Bonnie's a good candidate.

      4) May - Yup, you said it

      3) Misty - Yup, nothing to add

      2) Serena - Yes she is great! I do have a couple of very slight issues though. Firstly the English VA is terrible for her. Secondly the start of the series didn't play out very well for her. She started off as just as a sideline character, much like Misty. While there's nothing wrong with that, it does make her one of the less focused characters.

      1) Dawn - I sort of see what you're saying with her not adding anything, but then if you look at the DP series, there's already a large amount added to get used to. She becomes the new rookie of the journey; the person new to everything so that newcomers can learn about the series. They gave her her own episode a the start just so that we could be introduced to things, and in that sense she becomes the main character, allowing Ash to have a rougher storyline that doesn't reset.

      This presents probably the best dynamic of the series because her and Ash don't have to fight for space. While she is just as big a character as Ash, she never pulls him away from his dream and they often learn from each other and whatnot - They have great chemistry, from both having really headstrong, determined characters.

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      Blaze Arcane 7 months ago

      Serena is the best love it or hate it the only person who had love for ash

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      Sudowoodo 6 months ago

      As someone who has yet to watch past Johto, though I have started watching again, and will try:

      The removal of Misty was disappointing to me, and finding out about it from Japan while watching Johto made me not want to finish Johto, but the real reason I never finished Johto was that after about episode 200 the series really started to diminish in quality. I think Misty not winning the Whirl Cup in Johto was the thing that really annoyed me, and probably all Misty fans; especially, in light of Ash (a complete joke and novice of a trainer) winning the Orange League.

      The series' biggest flaw is the battling, because there is no consistency or logic behind it. At least in Kanto many of Ash's gym wins were explained to be out of pity and dumb luck. Every fan has certainly been annoyed every time one of Ash's pokemon takes over ten hits and then beats the opponent's pokemon with one direct hit, or Ash's pokemon dodges everything. Making Ash's pokemon Mary Sues was very stupid on the writers' part. The series as a whole would have had better longevity, and have been a better compliment to the games, if Ash's pokemon skills matched someone like Gary Oak, who actually catches the pokemon he encounters, and whose pokemon seem evolved and experienced enough to beat each gym.

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      Seven 6 months ago

      I like Serena cause imo she's probably the prettiest in the list.

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      Dawn 6 months ago

      1.dawn

      2.may

      3.misty

      4.serena and iris

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      Anon 5 months ago

      I don't get all this love that Serena gets?

      To me she's a bit... unbearable

      She's a bit annoying and dare I say it, Mary-Sueish?

      She feels like fanservice because people have wanted someone to have a canon crush on Ash for so longg

      -

      Heres my list (Don't kill me)

      5. May: never watched Advance, sorry

      4. Serena: *^^

      3. Dawn: Almost wanted to Ship Pearlshipping

      2. Iris: Your such a kid for disagreeing

      1. Misty: It's called nostalgia. Also I'm a sucker for Red Head tsunderes

      -

      It's a shame I dislike Serena because I reallY like Clemont.

      (Geekchicshipping is slowly eating at me tho)

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      Amourshipper 5 months ago

      I love serene and ash. There are great together.

      My list is..

      1. Serena

      2. May

      3. Dawn

      4. Iris

      5. Misty

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      A+S=AMOUR 5 months ago

      I am I love with ash and Serena. There great together.

      My list...

      5. Iris

      4. Misty

      3.dawn

      2.May

      1. Serena

      Serena is my favorite.

    • profile image

      #1 Negaishipper 5 months ago

      Nice characters bore me, Iris and Misty for the win!

      I don't really like Serena for the same reasons as 'Anon' and May and Dawn are basically the same in my book (Heaps of the lists have them tied (hint hint))

      My list would be similar to 'Anon's but at the same time not really

      1. Iris = Sure she doesn't have much character development but I still enjoy watching her on her journey and I can't genuinely say that about most of the other Pokegirls for some reason.

      2. Misty = ^

      3. May and Dawn = They are the same. May has a bit more development than Dawn so I'd probably put her above Dawn if I had to but... I don't have to.

      4. May and Dawn = ^

      5. Serena = Hence 'Anon's point.

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      Yomo80 4 months ago

      I love Serena and ash but second would be may then iris then dawn

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      A donut 4 months ago

      I am so used to the golden days with Ash, Brock and Misty i just can't like any other PokéGirl. But seriously, Serena is just umbearable. She is dumb, snob, annoying, useless, clearly has zero goals, adds nothing to the series, and she's a stereotype of girls.

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      R. 4 months ago

      I abstained from voting because, well . . .

      Apart from Misty, none of Ash's female companions had staying power and thus ended up being forgettable and forgotten.

      May had potential, but it was wasted when after failing as a trainer, she ended up being a coordinator instead.

      Dawn was too pathetic for words.

      Iris might as well have been Ash's cheerleader.

      The less said about Serena the better.

    • profile image

      Stupidguy 3 months ago

      Lol abstained from voting? Because misty lost? Loooool suckers, misty sucks! Serena is good, but im not a fanboy

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      SAM 3 months ago

      My list

      5-Iris

      4-Serens

      3-Dawn

      2-MAY

      1-MISTY

      MISTY IS MY FAVORITE

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      Rumman Jan 3 months ago

      Misty Misty she is Ash's first crush and ash always keeps the lure with him which was given to him by Misty when brock left to ash and misty they wetre caught in a cage by team rocket when team rocket say that brock was missing then they thought they were couples and ash n misty looked at each other and got blushed and refused it this tells that they feelingfor each other

      For me

      1 Misty

      2 Serena

      3 Dawn

      4May and Iris

    • profile image

      ISABELLA 3 months ago

      I like Serena And Dawn

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      Electro 3 months ago

      Nah Jesse is the best she never left.

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      temmie from undertale 2 months ago

      i agree serena is the best because pokemon xy was the first and fav show and serena is kinda like me and i dont really care about the shipping because serena kissed Ash so that is one other reason i like her and she is just amazing my 2nd is bonnie my 3rd is iris my 4th is misty and and 5th is from the new show pokemon sun and moon lilly

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      Trolly 2 months ago

      5. Iris

      4.Serena (I just don't like her okay! don't kill meh I'll tell you why bellow I guess)

      3.May

      2.Dawn

      1.BROCK! (Jk);

      1.Misty (I feel like I'm more like her)

      The reason I don't like Serena that much is that much is that she's obsessed with Ash. I mean, that makes sense.....I guess. The other reason is that like almost half of her fans like her because of her looks. Like seriously. Another (you guys think these are bad reasons..WELL I DONT CARE) is that I feel like the writers of der anime is giving her to MUCH attention. You guys are like but that's a GOOD thing! I guess..but they're making the other poke girls look like trash. (Plus she's like a clone of Dawn) and amoura shippers and also everyone else, don't you think that the ship is getting like pushed to much (I mean that was like the only ship that is i guess cannon) Anyway this is MINE OPPINION and you can't change it. I'll probably like Serena someday but you can't make me like her. And your probably like: oh so this must a poke shipper. WELL YOU'RE WRONG IMMA PALLET SHIPPER XD!!! Anyway sorry to all those Serena fans, I just don't like her and at least she's in fourth in MY list and not fifth (sorry to Iris fans) I hope you all have a good day and thank you for reading this :)

      I actually ship Ash with Brock.

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      farhan ali 4 weeks ago

      she is one of the best water pokemon trainer

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      Selli 3 weeks ago

      I prefer serena because she has such a strong crush and yes it sounds stupid that she just left the house to see a boy but she is ash s forever childhood friend and I feel it in my heart that they are meant to be.I feel some of you prefer misty dawn or may but serena is special to Pokémon and we can tell that ash likes her and I hope she returns to the sun and moon series fingers crossed

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      XXThatPikachuGu 13 days ago

      - I think Serena because she's the most loved pokemon female trainer in the anime so far so yes, that's my opinion

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      pokemon researcher 2 days ago

      hey i really think misty is totally right for ash

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