The manga is better overall, but there's just something about Satoshi/Ash which I find to be likeable and worth rooting for that I don't find in Red or any of the others. And I also don't like how all the stories in Special are in short little chapters that don't give nearly as much time as they should to what they're covering. And they shit the bed when it comes to tournaments, where the anime shines.
Plus, I don't find anything past the Yellow adventures even all that readable. It skips around too much and has no pacing. >>13180008
You know you loved the first season, at least.