A boy named Ash leaves home at ten. His mission is to capture and train monsters called Pokémon. His only weapon is Pikachu, an impulsive little rodent that turns its electrical powers against him when he tries to confine it in its Poké ball—just like the impulses that threaten to sabotage every boy on his life's journey. Ash must learn to understand its feelings and direct them toward winning the battles ahead. His companions are eleven-year-old Misty, who is beginning her own journey into the volatility of adolescence and turns her infatuation for Ash into wildly alternating hostility and nurturance, and thirteen-year-old Brock, who is vain, girl-crazy, and food-obsessed, a funny but annoying reminder of the appetites that Ash knows will awaken soon in himself and make his journey still more difficult. Together, they lead each other into endless trouble but ultimately compensate for one another's weaknesses and come out of every challenge triumphant.
Subduing the 150 kinds of Pokémon requires comprehending the widest possible range of attributes and personalities. There is Arcanine, a noble dog-like beast, and Meowth, a conniving, condescending cat. There is Gyarados, a raging, all-destroying sea dragon, and Squirtle, a turtle that acts like a juvenile delinquent. Snorlax does nothing but inhale food and fall asleep. Jigglypuff is a narcissistic ball of fuzz that makes everyone listen to its boring song and becomes fu