Nogizaka46's Erika Ikuta and Sayuri Matsumura sing the new remix
With the best Pokémon and the cheer squad behind him, it looks like Gary Oak is back in the Pokémon TV anime!
Tonight saw the first new episode of Pokémon Journeys TV anime for 2021 and with a new year came a brand new opening which features the voices of Nogizaka46's Erika Ikuta and Sayuri Matsumura singing yet another remix of the opening theme "1 ・ 2 ・ 3” , taking over from T.M. Revolution and Golden Bomber's Kirisho. But other than the jazzy new tune, we got a tease of what's to come in the upcoming episodes, including an appearance from Ash's long-time rival Gary Oak, and Best Wishes companion Iris.
The above tweets claim Gary is "Ash's childhood friend" (though I call shenanigans), and says to "look forward to seeing Iris's growth", which to fans of the long-running anime will be a sigh of relief. It's not mentioned when the two will show up, but we're excited to see them when they do! Gary hasn't been seen in the main Pokémon anime series since Diamond and Pearl, over 11 years ago.
Pokémon Journeys airs as Pocket Monsters in Japan every Friday night on TV Tokyo and streams on Netflix in the United States in batches, with the third batch released on December 4. No date has been released for the fourth batch as of yet.
Daryl Harding is a Japan Correspondent for Crunchyroll News. He also runs a YouTube channel about Japan stuff called TheDoctorDazza, tweets at @DoctorDazza, and posts photos of his travels on Instagram.