Raichu appeared in Electric Shock Showdown, where it was responsible for brutally defeating many opponents, as the Pokémon Center started to get crowded. This happened before Ash entered the Vermilion Gym. Later during Ash's arrival, Lt. Surge sent it out to him and his friends. Lt. Surge laughed at Ash for not making Pikachuevolve, thinking that evolved Pokémon are always better. This infuriated Ash and made Pikachu, also infuriated, want to battle Raichu.
In the battle, both sides started off with Thunder Shock, but Raichu's turned out to be more powerful, which weakened Pikachu drastically. Raichu then easily hit Pikachu with a combination of Mega Punch and Mega Kick before defeating him with a Thunderbolt.
Ash returned to the Gym for a rematch after Pikachu was healed. He ignored Lt. Surge's advice on evolving Pikachu into a Raichu. In the rematch, Raichu was able to hit Pikachu with Body Slam but Pikachu was able to use two new attacks, Agility and Quick Attack, which were both learned before the rematch, before being finished off. As Raichu evolved too fast, it never learned any speedy attacks. Pikachu took advantage of this by using his speedy attacks to confuse Raichu. Lt. Surge decided to cancel them by having Raichu use Thunderbolt on the field. However, Pikachu dodged it by using his tail. When Raichu was about to use Thunderbolt again, it ran out of electricity which gave Pikachu the upper hand. Pikachu finished Raichu off with his tail attack before Raichu made full contact with Take Down. As Ash eventually defeated Lt. Surge in a rematch, it proved to him that evolved Pokémon are not always better.
Raichu's attitude towards Ash's Pikachu almost completely mirrors Lt. Surge's attitude toward Ash. When they first meet Raichu, it doesn't have a high opinion of Pikachu. However, after being defeated, Raichu grows to respect him.
Raichu appears as Lt. Surge's Pokémon in all games he appears in. In Pokémon Yellow, it is his only Pokémon, much as in the anime. In other games it is not his only Pokémon, but it is always present. Lt. Surge's Pikachu that he has in the games is also shown below, since Surge said in the anime that he obtained his Raichu as a Pikachu.
In Raising Raichu, Raichu was used to battle the Masked Man. Later, when Surge encountered the frozenRed Gyarados at the Lake of Rage, he used Raichu to power up his submarine's underwater laser. However, as the thawed Gyarados wasn't willing to fight him, but instead trying to break another block of ice at the bottom of the lake, Surge ended up using the laser on the ice block, which turned out to contain some of the gears of Gold and Silver, who had previously fought the Masked Man at the lake.
Lt. Surge's Raichu only appeared as a silhouette in JBA5 along with its Trainer and the other Kanto Gym Leaders as one of the obstacles Jō must face.
In the TCG
Lt. Surge's Raichu has been depicted in in the TCG. The following is a list of cards involving either his Pikachu or Raichu.
Lt. Surge's Pikachu Cards listed with a blue background are only legal to use in the current Expanded format. Cards listed with a silver background are legal to use in both the current Standard and Expanded formats.
The second wave of decks leading up to the release of Leaders' Stadium were released on July 25, 1998. The first deck focuses on Gym Leader Lt. Surge and his predominantly Lightning-type Pokémon, and is named Kuchiba City Gym (Japanese: クチバシティジム マチス). The deck includes 60 main cards, four expansion cards, a coin, a rulebook, and Pokémon Gym Guide.