Red is the main protagonist of the first Pokémon games, Pokémon Red/Blue/Green/Yellow as well as the male protagonist in their remakes, Pokémon FireRed and LeafGreen, and as the Super Boss of Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal and their remakes. He is a playable character from Super Smash Bros. Brawl as well as the main protagonist in the TV Series Pokémon Origins. He also appears as World Tournament Challenger in Pokémon Black 2/White 2, as a Battle Tree Challenger in Pokémon Sun and Moon, and as a character in Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!. His rival is Blue. The main character in the Pokémon anime series, Ash Ketchum, is based on him. His female counterpart in FireRed and LeafGreen is Leaf.
In Pokémon Origins, he is voiced by Junko Takeuchi in the Japanese version, and by Bryce Papenbrook in the English version.
He was voiced by Tomoe Hanba in the Japanese version of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and by Michele Knotz in the English version. The latter reprised her role as Red in the Japanese version of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate while Billy Bob Thompson, who also voiced Greninja, voices him in the English version, replacing Michele Knotz from Brawl.
In the Pokémon Games, Red is very quiet as with all other playable protagonists. Later games revealed however that unlike his counterparts, Red's actual personality is being stoic and not wishing to or needing to speak. Therefore in the Original Games and their remakes taking place after Red and Blue, he is called out for being quiet by a few NPCs. Pokemon Masters as well highlights how much his reserved demeanor ironically causes him to stand out against all the other playable characters who appear such as Rosa and Brendan, given how energetic they are when fully voiced. Even his female counterpart Leaf from the Gen 1 remakes is expressive and openly speaks. For further irony, Red's only coherent line in Pokemon Masters reveals that he deems words unnecessary as Pokemon can understand his commands without hearing him. In Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal and their remakes, he lives a solitary lifestyle as he trains on the top of the barren Mt. Silver, and never speaks to the player, even when defeated. Multiple NPCs such as his mom comment on how they haven't seen him in awhile. In Pokémon Black and White 2, he returns to human society to participate in the Pokemon World Tournament, and later The Battle Tree in Pokémon Sun and Moon
In Pokemon Origins, Red's personality is shifted into being a well-meaning polite kid. However he's also a klutz, in the beginning of his journey, he tends to forget type-match ups (as seen in his first battle against Blue). Initially, he saw Pokémon as tools rather than partners, but as the series progressed, he learns to genuinely care for them. He does have a sense of morality, always standing up for what's right.
In the Games
In Pokémon Red/Green/Blue and their remakes, Red gets to choose from one of the three Kanto starters Bulbasaur, Charmander, or Squirtle from Professor Oak. From their, he catches more pokémon, battles trainers, and challenges the Kanto Pokémon Gyms throughout the region. Along the way, he would battle his then Hated Rival Blue Oak, who has the starter with the advantage against Red's Starter. Red would also get into skirmishes with Team Rocket that heat up as the team progresses, eventually facing their boss Giovanni. At the eighth gym, Red finds that Giovanni is actually the Viridian City Gym Leader and battles him. At the end of it all, Red beats him, seemingly causing Giovanni to have a change of heart. Giovanni surrenders the final badge, letting Red go and challenge the Indigo Pokémon League. Thier he faces the Elite 4, the four allegedly best trainers in the Indigo Region (Kanto and Johto). After facing the final member, Lance, Red learns that Blue has already become the champion and now Red must face him. Red faces Blue in a battle where he ulimately wins and becomes the Pokémon Champion on the Indigo Region. Not much is known about Red after this point
In Pokémon Yellow, Red receives a Pikachu from Professor Samuel Oak, which follows him in the game. This Pikachu is special as it refuses to evolve. The game follows the same plot as the originals and their remakes.
In Pokémon Gold/Silver/Crystal (along with its remakes) It is clear that Red had resigned for Being Champion as Lance has become the Indigo Champion again. Red is seen on the top of Mt. Silver, where he can be challenged as the game's Super Boss. It is important to note that he has the highest leveled Pokémon in the core series (his Pikachu being at level 81 in the original, and level 88 in the remake). His other pokémon are also extremely high leveled. Red has the three Kanto Starters as well as an Espeon (In the Original 2nd Gen) or a Lapras (In the 2nd gen remakes) and a Snorlax. After defeated, Red says nothing before leaving
Red appears in Pokémon Black and White 2 in the Pokémon World Tournament Champion's Tournament, serving as one of the opponents that the player must face.
In Pokémon Sun and Moon, Red appears as one of the two opponents the protagonist can face upon arrival (The other being Blue). After the battle concludes, Blue tells the player that if he really wants to test his/her skills, he/she should challenge the Battle Tree and that he/she may get lucky enough to face Red or Blue in it as well.
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, he a playable character by the name of Pokemon Trainer, his team consists of Ivysaur, Charizard and Squirtle which the player can switch between at will. After a KO of one, Pokémon Trainer automatically sends out his next pokémon (Squirtle > Ivysaur > Charizard) however, the player can switch back to the KO pokemon upon respawning. His Pokémon that can use Triple Finish as their Final Smash. In Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS, his Charizard returns as a solo playable character, though he and his other two pokémon do not return.
In Pokémon Origins
Red has a counterpart who shares his name and who is the main protagonist of Pokémon Origins. He is the rival of Blue, the grandson of Professor Oak. He received a Charmander as his starter. He defeats Blue in the Indigo Plateau, and catches Mewtwo in Cerulean Cave.
In the original Japanese dub, he was voiced by Junko Takeuchi, while in the English dub, he was voiced by Bryce Papenbrook, who also voices Adrien Agreste \ Cat Noir in Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir.
In the manga
- Main article: Red (Pokémon Adventures)
Red has a counterpart in the manga who shares his name. He first appears in the Red, Green & Blue arc as the main protagonist. In this chapter, he had two rivals: Blue Oak (Green Okido in Japan), the grandson of Professor Oak, and Green (Blue in Japan), a girl who stole his badges in Wartortle Wars.
He also appeared in the following arcs: Yellow arc, Gold & Silver arc (in a photo), Crystal arc, FireRed & LeafGreen arc, Emerald arc, HeartGold & SoulSilver arc (in a flashback), and OmegaRuby & AlphaSapphire arc. He was also mentioned in the Diamond & Pearl arc.
In the anime
- Main article: Ash Ketchum
Red's counterpart in the anime is Ash Ketchum. During his journey across the different regions, Ash collected the Gym Badges and challenged the different Regional Leagues, but always ended up losing, with his place in Kalos being the highest place so far on the League (Second place, after Alain). Ash's differing roles and Red's shift into a stoic yet accomplished master have made them distinct characters in the eyes of the franchise and fandom however.
- Tyson Granger from Beyblade is based off of Red.
- In Pokemon Origins the team Red uses the become champion is the same team Satoshi Tajiri used when playing Red and Green for the first time.
- He, Naruto Uzumaki, Gon Freecss, Rin Natsuki/Cure Rouge, and Takuya Kanbara are all voiced by Junko Takeuchi in the Japanese versions of Pokémon Origins, Hunter x Hunter (1999), Yes! Pretty Cure 5 and its second season, Yes! Pretty Cure 5 GoGo, and Digimon Frontier, respectively.
- Bryce Papenbrook voiced Red in the English version of Pokémon Origins, and is also the voice of Cat Noir, Silver the Hedgehog, Makoto Naegi, and Kirito in the English language dubs of Miraculous: Tales of Ladybug & Cat Noir, Sonic the Hedgehog series, Danganronpa series, and Sword Art Online, respectively.
- Red is the most powerful trainer in the core game series (his Pikachu being at level 88). Likewise, it's been said that he is a prodigy, being able to defeat all of the Kanto Gym Leaders and the Indigo Plateau, all without aging in the slightest.
- He has caught all 150 of the Kanto Pokémon (with the exception of Mew).
- In Gold/Silver/Crystal (including the remakes to the former two games), if the player visits his mother in Pallet Town, she will say that her son never calls her (leading her to wonder and worry about him).
- FireRed and LeafGreen are the only games where Red has a female counterpart, since Leaf does not appear in any other game alongside him.
- However, in Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee!, they both appear together as NPCs, being rivals of the player. Leaf is called "Green" in this game.
- There is a running gag of Red being mute in Gold, Silver, Crystal, HeartGold, SoulSilver, Black 2, White 2, Sun and Moon. The fact he was the player in Red, Blue (Green), Japanese Blue, Yellow, FireRed and LeafGreen may be the reason for this gag. Unlike the other silent protagonists who speak in spin-offs however, Red is the only one who seems to be actually stoic and averse to talking, as even Leaf speaks in Pokemon Masters. However, he can talk in Pokemon Origins.