Red met Poli as a Poliwag in a lake. When Red drowned, Poliwag evolved into a Poliwhirl and saved his life. Since then Poli is Red's partner.
He saved his life once more from drowning into the ocean in the eleventh chapter when Red once did when Lt. Surge pushed him and his Poliwhirl off the boat and Poliwhirl evolved into a Poliwrath saved him and they went back on the boat. He helped Red many times in his life such as defeating Blue's Charizard in the Pokémon League along with Pika.
- Poli has always been on hand for Red and, thus, has never been in storage.
- Poli being Red's first Pokemon may likely be a nod to creator, Satoshi Tajiri, who said his favorite Pokemon was Poliwhirl.