Fans of the classic Pokémon anime and the original Pokémon Snap were probably surprised but happy to see Todd Snap, the protagonist from the original game, return in New Pokémon Snap. Todd is an odd character in Pokémon's history in that he has barely appeared in the decades following his original appearance. In New Pokémon Snap, players learn that Todd has become a professional Pokémon photographer, celebrated the world over for his skills. He has grown since his days with Professor Oak, being a colleague of Professor Mirror. From there, he takes on a pseudo-mentorship role to help the player finish their mission.
Who is Todd Snap, though? What has he done not only in the games but also in the anime and beyond since the days of his original appearance? By going through his history, we can celebrate one of the lesser-known Pokémon protagonists, coming to understand why this simple photographer means so much to so many old-school Pokémon fans.
Todd Snap in the Games
Outside of his most recent appearance in New Pokémon Snap, Todd Snap has been a part of a handful of other games. In Pokémon Snap, Todd is hired by Professor Oak to explore Pokémon Island, photographing the various species on the island. Of all his accomplishments there, Todd's most memorable success is capturing a picture of the extra-rare Pokémon Mew.
However, this isn't actually the only time Todd is referenced in a video game. He briefly appeared in Super Smash Bros. Melee as a trophy -- or at least his mobile vehicle, the ZERO-ONE, does. In order to travel along Pokémon Island, Todd needed this all-terrain vehicle. It allows him to travel through the mountainside, through rivers, even through the clouds to pursue Mew.
Todd Snap in the Pokémon Anime
Todd Snap's role is far more expansive in the Pokémon anime, where he travels with Ash, Misty and Brock. Here, Todd becomes famous not for capturing a photo of Mew, but rather capturing a photo of Aerodactyl -- the same Pokémon that, episodes earlier, Ash freed from an ancient prison. In his debut episode "Pokémon Paparrazi," he is hired by Team Rocket to capture Pikachu -- Meowth misunderstanding that Todd captured Pokémon on camera rather than physically seizing them. After hijinks ensue, Todd joins Ash and company for a few episodes.
He leaves after the episode "The Breeding Center Secret," where he and the gang encounter Cassidy and Butch for the first time. The encounter ends with a secret Team Rocket scheme being foiled, ironically, in part due to Jessie, James and Meowth. Todd's departure isn't dramatic, however. He just leaves to go take more photographs. He appears later on during Ash's Johto adventure on as part of his mission to take photos of Articuno.
Todd is unique in that he appeared in the anime first, making the jump to games shortly after. However, he is odd in another way: he is the only Pokémon anime spin-off character to also appear in Pokémon Adventures.
Todd Snap in Pokémon Adventures
The long-running Pokémon Adventures manga follows the plots of the games. While still aimed towards children, it's significantly darker at times, following the various characters as they age across generations. However, bizarrely, Todd Snap doesn't appear in the chapters that debuted around the time of his anime appearance, or even his appearance in Pokémon Snap. Instead, he appeared in the during Generation III's Emerald Arc, long after his last appearance in the anime.
Snap appears as a Pokémon Reporter who encounters Emerald on the Battle Frontier, stunned by his eccentric behavior. He helps Emerald out during his adventures. In the Epilogue, he encounters Professor Oak, who asks if Todd would like to help the Professor explore Pokémon Island, tying the events of Pokémon Adventures in with the events of Pokémon Snap.
He later makes a cameo in the ZERO-ONE during the Omega Ruby & Alpha Sapphire chapter, traveling in the ZERO-ONE while hearing about the events of the arc. However, Todd's role in the story is minimal but memorable, and, until New Pokémon Snap, served as his latest appearance in any Pokémon media.