Kenny started out as a timid boy who feared to even touch Pokémon. During a school field trip, Kenny and his classmates were searching for a Poliwag that had run off. After Max found Poliwag under a bench, Tommy accused him of ruining the class trip and Anita stood up for Kenny.
Outside, Kenny watched the battle between Max and Tommy. When Team Rocket arrived with the stolen Pokémon from the school, Kenny gave Max advice on how to defeat the trio as soon as Max battled them. Kenny told Max that he should use an actual attack, instead of relying on defensive moves constantly. After Team Rocket was defeated, Kenny petted Magby and Poliwag, showing that he had finally overcome his fear of touching Pokémon. At this, Tommy finally came to respect Kenny and they both became friends.
Prior to the episode, Kenny was given the responsibility of taking care of a Poliwag during the school field trip. Due to his fear of touching Pokémon, Poliwag ran off and was found by Max.