Tajiri noted in an interview that between Japanese and American reactions to the series, Japanese consumers focused on the character Pikachu, while Americans purchased more items featuring Ash and Pikachu, his Pokémon, together. He stated that he felt the character represented the concept of the franchise, the human aspect, and was a necessity. The character was given a rival named Gary (Shigeru in the Japanese version, after Tajiri's idol/mentor, Nintendo legend Shigeru Miyamoto), loosely based on Red's rival Blue. In an interview Tajiri noted the contrast between the characters' relationship in the games and anime; while in the games they were rivals, in the anime, Shigeru represented Satoshi's master. When asked if either Satoshi would equal or surpass Shigeru, Tajiri replied "No! Never!" Ash's character design was initially overseen by Sayuri Ichishi, replaced by Toshiya Yamada during the Diamond and Pearl storyline arc. Ash received a redesign in the Best Wishes! series, which included larger brown irises. In the XY series, he received minor changes, such as a decrease in the size of the 'birthmarks' on his cheeks. Ash received a major design overhaul for the Sun and Moon anime series, which started airing in Japan on November 17, 2016.