Episode 001: I choose you Pikachu
Ash Ketchum is a boy from Pallet Town, who has just turned ten and can now qualify for his Pokemon licence. He can get his first Pokemon from the local Pokemon expert, Professor Oak. However, during the night, Ash has a dream about capturing Pokemon and tosses his Pokeball alarm clock against the wall. He oversleeps the next morning and rushes out to Prof. Oak's laboratory in his pajamas. There, he runs into Gary Oak, Prof. Oak's grandson and Ash's greatest rival. Gary tells Ash that he has the best Pokemon of all, then rides off on a convertable as the crowd follows him off. Oak come out and escorts Ash into the lab. Unfortunatly, all of the Pokemon have been taken except for one. Oak hesitates to give that Pokemon to Ash, but Ash begs Oak to give it to him. Oak opens up the Pokeball and a small yellow creature appears. Oak tells Ash that its name is Pikachu. Ash hugs Pikachu, but Pikachu shocks Ash. Oak gives Ash six Pokeballs and a Pokedex and brings the two back outside, where Ash's mom has gathered her friends and neighbors to support Ash. Ash shows off his Pikachu, who refuses to get inside a Pokeball. Pikachu ends up shocking everyone in the crowd.
Using the rubber gloves and clothesline his mom packed for him, Ash drags along Pikachu on a makeshift leash. Ash tries to make peace with Pikachu, but Pikachu still ignores Ash's command to get into the Pokeball. Ash consults his Pokedex, Dexter, who informs Ash that some Pokemon hate being confined. Ash lets Pikachu off the leash, but still gives Ash the cold shoulder. Ash spies a Pidgey and tells Ash to get it, but Pikachu runs away and climbs up a tree instead. After several attempts to capture the Pidgey himself, Ash gets frustrated and throws rocks at a flock of Pidgeys in the grass. He misses, and hits a short-tempered Spearow instead. The Spearow swoops on Ash, then starts to attack Pikachu. Pikachu uses Thundershock to ground the Spearow, only to cause the Spearow to call the rest of the flock. Ash and Pikachu try to run for it, but the Spearow overtake Pikachu and begin to beat it. Ash picks up the battered Pikachu and runs into the woods. Arriving at a dead end, Ash jumps into a rapid river, which carries them both quickly downstream.
Downstream, a girl is fishing and suddenly gets a bite. But when she yanks out her catch, she finds that she hooked Ash and Pikachu. After scolding Ash for letting Pikachu get hurt, she points them towards a Pokecenter. By then the Spearow have caught up to Ash, so he takes the girl's bike and rides away. As Ash speeds through and open field, it begins to thunder and rain. The Spearow attack Ash, causing the bike to crash. As the Spearow come in for the kill, Ash places a Pokeball in front of Pikachu and tells him to get inside so he won't get hurt. Ash prepares to take the beating from the Spearow to save Pikachu. Pikachu sees what Ash is about to do for it and jumps up and Thundershocks the entire flock.
When Ash wakes up, he sees Pikachu lying next to him, smiling weakly at his friend. As Ash looks at the rainbow that formed after the rainstorm and sees a bird fly over it. Dexter is unable to identify the Pokemon, stating that there are still Pokemon not yet discovered. Heading toward the Pokecenter in Viridian City, Ash carries Pikachu, who licks Ash on the cheek.