Was Ash Or Brock The Hottest In 'Pokemon'? It's Time We Finally Break This Debate Down

Real Talk: the ‘90s left us with some dark crushes. Whether it’s a sexual awakening from an animated lion named Simba or how you swooned Helga Pataki style over Hey Arnold’s Arnold, there is at least one faux crush you felt weird about back then. Luckily the Internet has made it safe to admit your attraction to Buzz Lightyear, so I think it's finally time to confront one of the most divisive debates of our time: who’s hotter Pokemon guy, Ash or Brock?

OK, there are two reactions you’re probably having to me right now. The first reaction is, “Oh my god, I had a total crush on Blah when I was younger, and I’m glad we can finally talk this out.” The second reaction is, “Oh my god, is this really an article who has a crush on an animated character? Also, I’m joyless and denying my attraction to certain animated fictional characters.” Either way, this is a discussion we need to have. Personally, I had a big, big crush on Ash Ketchum when I was a youngling, while my neighbor Searra had a crush on Brock. (I’m not going to say how far these crushes went. I’m just gonna throw out there that there may have been live-action role playing that I’m not proud of. Whatever, I was 8, sue me.)

But, really, now that I am a full grown woman who rents real estate, pays the electric bill, and ranks sexy Draculas for a living, let’s take a critical look over which Pokemon boy would be the best match.

1. Who's More Physically Appealing?

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Hard call, because Ash is definitely a raven-haired beauty, but I'm not really about the squiggle lines on his cheeks. Likewise, Brock is a bronzed Adonis, but does he ever open his eyes, like, ever? It's not aesthetically unappealing or anything, I just feel like I could never connect with him on a soul level. Eyes are so important. Ultimately, I'm going to go with Brock because his image doesn't instantly conjure up that of a literal child.

2. Who Has Better Life Skills?

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So, we have to give Ash props for leaving his house and roughing it up in forests instead of embracing the perils of fifth grade, that's a bold move. On the other hand, though, how far would Ash really get without his older companions? Brock is literally a domestic king, who can cook and clean like no other, so, yeah, I would go backpacking with that guy.

3. Who Would Make The Better Father To My Children?

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Ash has a kind of love of Pokemon that is more-or-less world-saving, which is great in theory. Brock, however, is training to be a Pokemon breeder and raised more-or-less nine children on his own, plus he has all those aforementioned cooking-and-cleaning skills. So that's three rounds.

4. Who Is The Better Pokemon Trainer?

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This is actually hard to say. Technically speaking, Ash is like one of the literal worst Pokemon trainers. He basically spent the early aughts of his Pokemon career winning badges by circumstance, not by... winning any actual battles. Then again, Brock has taken a hard step back from that trainer life, and Ash has had plenty of years (as a 10-year-old) to develop as a trainer. We're gonna give this one to Ash, because there's definite potential there.

5. Who Has Pokemon That I Wouldn't Mind Hanging Around With?

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Because, to quote a great feminist collective from that same era, "If you wanna be my lover, you gotta get with my friends." You know what? I've always wanted to have a Vulpix of my own; those little foxes are like on my top 20 list. On the other hand, how much fun am I going to have with a Geodude? Pikachu may be a little hard to win over, but forming a friendship with cute little rodent would be so worth it the long run. Point Ash.

6. Who Would Be Faithful In The Long Run?

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Ash doesn't really hold a lot of romantic interest throughout the course of the series. You could ship him with Misty, many do (and I did, waaaaay before I knew what shipping was), but that's about it. Brock, however, will hit on literally any Jenny, Joyce, or otherwise in your color-named town. Now, I don't really think that means that Brock would ever cheat on you, because I ultimately think he's casting a wide net to get any sort of fish. Still, I'd stick with Ash on this one, just 'cause I don't think you'd want to pull your husband away by the ear anytime someone moderately attractive walks into the room.

Final Verdict?

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Brock, duh. First of all, look at the above gif. Second of all, I think we all can recognize that Brock has a maturity you can really appreciate from a (still fictional) man-boy. All the fawning he does over lady folk is unappealing, but I kind of get the sense that, once you can get him to commit to you, he will wine and dine you to no end. Safer bet in the long run.

Then again, there was something deeply romantic about the rose-holding James and that gorgeous blue hair of his. And, actually, who can deny the attractiveness of a young Gary Oak, unable to drive but perpetually flanked by gorgeous women?

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Yeah, actually, JK guys, Gary Oak is the best pick in the series, everyone else can go home.

Images: The Pokemon Company International (1); Giphy (14)