Hello there! Welcome to the world of Pokémon! When it comes to Pokémon, Professor Oak is THE go-to guy for all things pocket monster related. He's the leading authority on Pokémon and probably knows more than the entire collection of articles that formulate the Bulbapedia! Not only is this Professor an iconic figure for all trainers, gamers and Pokémon fanatics, he's also the backbone of many humorous internet jokes. Creator of the Pokédex and teacher to all, Professor Oak will forever go down in the hall of fame, and to celebrate, we're investigating some of the craziest facts that only super-fans know about the man himself!
Following our Gym leader's Super-Fan articles, we've decided to give the main authority on Pokémon himself the same treatment. First appearing on our miniature Game-Bou screens in 1995 with an Eevee by his side, Oak's popularity has only continued to snowball. Without a second thought, the Professor's contributions to the Pokémon Nation are legendary! Even though on the outside, Oak seems like a bumbling old man, when we scratch beneath that surface, we discover one of the most complex and well-thought-out characters in the gaming universe!
Collectively, these facts create the most in-depth super knowledge list on the whole web. Whether you're a Pokémon Master or a Newbie Trainer, there's something you (most likely) don't know. From Oak's secret super-hero-like alter ego and his well-deserved Karma to his dark, questionably villainous counter-part and his real name. We've got facts for all fans, casual or hardcore.
According to the Jhoto Professor, Professor Elm, Oak's research focus is dedicated to the relationships between people and Pokémon. A very noble goal to focus on in the crazy world of Pokémon.
It's not just his main focus, it's his profession!
By this logic, we can safely assume that a Pokémon's friendship level with its trainer is Oak's main drive with his work. What's interesting is that despite this been Oak's main drive, the Friendship system (that measured the relationship between your Pokémon and you) wasn't introduced until the Generation II games.
Agatha is the Ghost-type trainer who resides in the Elite-Four of Kanto's Pokémon League. As it goes, Oak and Agatha were really good friends back in both of their youths. Whatever happened, Agatha now refers to Oak as soft and an old fool. However, it's known that Oak has some affiliation with the Pokémon league as an advisor and we could safely assume this is due to his experience in his youth. Both Agatha and Oak were top-class trainers, it's believed that Agatha holds some sort of grudge against the Professor for leaving the world of battle and devoting his time purely to his research.
Well, we know that Oak was successful enough to be affiliated with the Pokémon League. Obviously, there's a wide number of reasons for this. Think about how famous Oak is, that renowned status isn't just from conducting experiments and reporting his findings. His battle experience prior to the Oak we know in Generation I makes him very well know. One question begs to mind, why do we get sent out on a quest to capture all the Pokémon across Kanto in the Pokédex if Oak was so successful in his youth? More on that later!
In Pokémon Generation I, Oak has unused trainer data in the game. What does this mean? It means that Oak was going to be a planned battle in the first games! Obviously, when Red and Blue take their first Pokémon, Oak finds himself lumbered with the final, remaining Pokémon. This is actually good news for the player, we know that Blue picks the Pokémon that has a type advantage over Red's choice, meaning whatever Oak is left with, the Player's starter has the type advantage.
One of the most bewildering facts about Oak is that his presence seems to stretch to every corner of the Pokémon Nation. Every time a new game is released, there's always some character who has some sort of relationship with the professor. Pokémon GO is no exception to that rule! Professor Willow from Pokémon GO was actually mentored by Professor Oak in his hay-day as mentioned by Willow. Furthermore, In the Pokémon GO Web series, The Two Professors, Willow contacts Oak to discuss the recent appearance of Ditto transforming into an unrecognizable Pokémon. Oak is able to identify it as the Mythical Pokémon, Meltan.
Another iconic role that Oak plays is not just a Professor, but a Grandfather - albeit a questionably irresponsible parental figure. I mean, who sends their Grandson out at ten years old to journey across the land? Who keeps more regular contact with the neighbors Son than his own Grandson? Oak does! Have you ever wondered what happened to Garry and his Sister's Mother and Father? According to the Pokémon Zensho Manga, they both passed away in a car incident! Leaving Oak to look after his Grandchildren full-time!
Oak's ability to grant access to Legendary Pokémon isn't just something that happens in the core-series of the games, he generously gives out details about Pokémon in spin-offs too! Pokémon Snap featured one of the anime's favorites, Todd Snap, and was an on-the-rails shooter and simulator first released on the Nintendo 64. Oak appears as an important character in Snap. Useful as always, Oak reveals the location of the mythical Pokémon, Mew, saying that it's located on the Rainbow Road! Thanks to the Reddit user Arti who recreated the Mew level in Pokémon Snap with a cutout from their AR shot.
Oak's first name is Samuel, although this fact on its own doesn't seem amazing, you wouldn't believe the number of casual fans who don't know this. Unlike his Aloan cousin who goes by the name of Samson Oak, Samuel Oak was never called out on his name straight away. Instead, it took a while for the franchise to discreetly release his name. Most notably, his name was revealed in the Pokémon 4ever movie. In 4ever, Ash meets a young boy named Sam who is actually Oak's younger self, they meet through the time traveling prowess of Celebi!
Throughout the Pokémon timeline, many questions remain unanswered, and probably never will be. One such question that fans are asking (and that has never been answered) is whether or not Team Rocket Boss, Giovanni, is Professor Oak's Son and Garry Oak's Father.
Conclusive answers in the anime seem to point towards this assumption!
Think about it, maybe that's why Giovanni goes easy on Gary at the Veridian City Gym and why the two never directly confront one another. That would mean that Silver is also Garry's step-brother by rights. Furthermore, it explains why Oak's never quick to attack Team Rocket, despite all the humanitarian work he does to stabilize the relationship between Pokémon and humankind. Weird?
Aside from the many hundreds of thousands of Pokémon he cares for, Oak only has nine Pokémon. Who are these Pokémon? Well, we've got Charmander, Bulbasaur, and Squirtle.
Our iconic starters all belonged to Oak at some point.
It's believed he hatched them and never went any further with training, allowing newer trainers to give them the time and attention the starters required. We also see him with an Eevee in the opening scenes of the Generation I games. Furthermore, he owns a Pikachu that the player obtains in Pokémon Yellow. So what about the other four? More on that in a second!
Aside from the three starters, an Eevee and a Pikachu, Oak has four other Pokémon that we know he owns. Given Oak's past and the fact he was an excellent Pokémon trainer, we can safely assume that these Pokémon are from Oak's past adventures. Firstly, Oak's Gyarados comes into play! Secondly and thirdly, Oak's Tauros and Arcanine are just as highly thought of in Oak's parties. Finally, he uses an Exeggutor in his regular team. This high-powered team are believed to be between levels 60 and 70. Reinforcing his team is also the starter Pokémon that wasn't chosen by Red and Blue in its final evolved state. Massive thanks to Oniwanbashu for the Fanart!
Remember that player data where you could go head-to-head against Oak? Well as it goes, you can actually battle him, although taking advantage of this glitch is a lot more hassle than it's probably worth.
Given the level of Oak's Pokémon, we can safely assume he was a post-game battle.
The only known reliable way is to undergo the Ditto glitch with a Special stat of 226. Overcomplicated and highly complex, this glitch is a lot of hassle just for a five or ten minute battle against the Pokémon Authority.
Oak's friends span further than the region of Kanto! Although this has proven to be one big contradiction in the Pokémon franchise! Like why wouldn't Oak know about Generations II, III or IV in Generation I games given his known relationships with some of the inhabitants in these local areas? Across the board, it's believed that some of Oak's closest friends are Professor Elm, Professor Rowan, and Kurt the Pokéball smith. Easily one of the most overlooked factors in Pokémon is Oak's surprising memory (so maybe that's an acceptable answer), but we'll get into that later in the article!
Further evidence that Oak is THE authority on Pokémon is his ability to grant the player access to Legendary Pokémon encounters. In HeartGold & SoulSilver versions of the game, after the player trades Groudon and Kyogre into the same game, Oak gives the player a Jade Orb so that Rayquaza may be caught at the Embedded Tower. In Pokémon Platinum, once the player provides Oak with the Up-Grade, Professor Oak will talk about the Legendary birds and say that they have been sighted in Sinnoh. From here on in, the player can capture Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres throughout the region.
Generation II was a real blast, we got the Pokémon from Generation I that were cut and we got a ton of new features. One of the most overlooked details about Generation II in relation to Oak is what he wears! Throughout the various mediums Pokémon presents itself in, Oak is traditionally seen in his white lab coat.
Oak's only seen as being more stylish in the Zensho Manga!
However, when we get out our magnifying glass for hyper-details, we can see that Oak wears a golden coat in Generation II! Further, in the article we'll read about how Oak has great faith in Gold, perhaps this coat's color is symbolic of that relationship Oak has with the Generation II hero!
Cast your hearts and minds back to the Silver and Gold versions of Generation II, remember that guy who gave you your starter, Professor Elm? Well, it turns out that the Pokémon Egg that Mr. Pokémon has is in-fact the reason Oak ventured out to Jhoto.
Professor Oak offers to take the Egg to Elm himself!
After meeting Gold he expresses his faith in the young man and tells him to deliver the egg. Perhaps this is why Oak is seen wearing the Gold coat in Generation II, symbolic of his trust and faith in Gold. Continuing to show his good faith, Oak also gives Gold a Pokédex to send you out on a similar journey to Red.
Pokémon's Zensho series also provided information on how the starters were distributed. Ash (Satoshi) takes Charmander, Garry (Shigeru) takes Squirtle and Oak keeps Bulbasaur for himself so he doesn't get lonely. When Ash leaves for the Indigo Plateau, Oak's Bulbasaur evolves into Ivysaur and then again into Venasaur. Despite Venasaur appearing often, none of its moves ever get revealed!
During the Pokémon Trading Card Game, many cards have been unveiled to have Oak staring as their main piece. However, one of the most underlooked members of the Oak category has to be his dark counterpart!
Imposter Oak has three cards in his set, Imposter, Revenge, and Invention!
Apart from his first incarnation, Imposter Oak expansions mainly consisted of Dark Types. Not only has Imposter Oak appeared in the TCG, but Oak's dark counter-part also appeared in the Pokémon Adventures Manga.
Oak's always been a wordy fellow, usually given hundreds of lines, in-game and out. All of these lines are typed up flawlessly so this next fact was probably done purposely, however the reason why is unknown. When the player has their Pokédex evaluated with at least 484 of the potential 493 caught, Oak will utter a line that has a typo error in it. "Meeting you is something l will cherish all my life long." The "I" actually been replaced with a lowercase "L". For whatever reason this happened, we don't know, what we do know is that this is the only known typo attached to Oak's character.
Amazingly, Oak isn't even a Professor. Hundreds of changes were made between the original Japanese versions and the English versions, one such change was Oak's title. One of the biggest lies we've all been told is that NONE of the regional Pokémon Professors, actually are Professors! From Oak to Willow, every single one of them's titled: Doctor. Oak's Japanese name is actually Dr. Okido! I don't know about you, but I prefer Doctor to Professor, it makes you wonder what they call the Generation V trainer class of Doctors? It's still Doctor.
Speaking of Doctors been mistitled Professors, you may be also interested to know that Oak has a super-hero-like alter-ego. By day a renowned Pokémon Professor, by night a one-man army Pokémon trainer who goes by the alias, Dr. O!
I wonder if his name was inspired by Doctor Octopus?
In the Pokémon Adventures Manga, Oak becomes Dr. O to teach the thieving trainer, Green, a lesson in Pokémon Battles. Green stole a Pokémon (Squirtle) from his lab and eventually gets her comeuppance when she is confronted by Dr. O.
It's no secret among the community that Professor Oak actually has a crush on Ash's Mother in the anime. Although this has never been officially confirmed by Pokémon's Creators, the amount of evidence that stacks up against Oak's infatuation is just too great. Although that's only true in the English dub, the Japanese version of the anime has little evidence to support this. Think about it, they're always seen together, and Oak even sends Ash out to catch all the Pokémon in the world. With Ash out of the picture, Oak is free to make his move on Delia Ketchum! In the episode "Showdown at the Oak Corral" Oak is trying to think up words to a love poem that Ash's mother thinks is for her!
Oak's memory has never been his strongest asset. For a Pokémon researcher, this isn't the greatest trait to carry. Evidence of this is strongest in the games. Despite Oak being your neighbour all your life and despite him being friends with your Mother he still asks you your name! But wait, it gets worse. Because he actually asks you what his own Grandson's name is! Astoundingly he's not even inclined to think twice about it when you tell him that his Grandson's name is actually Uncle Fester or Facemelt. Wow, Oak needs to play some Brain Training on his DS we reckon!
Theories surrounding Pokémon are a commonplace theme in the gaming communities speculation centers. One such speculation is that Oak is actually super-rich! Just because Oak seems to enjoy the quiet life in the tiny town of Pallet, doesn't mean he isn't sitting on a fat pile of Pokécoins!
You'd think Oak would feel inclined to give us some money to start our journey at least!
Oak's wealth has never been confirmed, but it makes sense that he is so wealthy. Think about how he has so much experience in the field of science, how he's so well traveled and seems to have been groomed to be a part of the Pokémon Nation.