Chronicles Episode 008

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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Pokémon Chronicles

Chronicles 08

Episode Stats:

Weekly Pokemon Broadcasting Station #012:
"The Orchid Residence Decisive Battle!
Pokémon Chronicles Episode 08:
  "Showdown at the Oak Corral"

Japanese Air Date:  January 14th, 2003
American Air Date:  July 15th, 2006
Important Characters:  Orchid-Hakase (Professor Oak), Kenji (Tracey), Yamato (Cassidy), Kosaburou (Butch), Mama-san (Delia)
Important Places:  Masara Town (Pallet Town)

In Orchid-Hakase's laboratory in the quiet borough known as Masara Town, life goes on as usual.  As Orchid-Hakase and Kenji go about their daily activities, Yamato and Kosaburou, two members of the Rocket-Dan, plot to steal all the pokemon on the ranch!  The duo, disguised as pokemon, sneak through the professor's garden and gain access to the room where the professor stores all the pokemon being kept for trainers who start out in Masara Town.  As they make their escape, still in costume, the pokemon on the ranch notice something strange.  They alert Kenji and the others, and before long the professor realizes they've been robbed!  Using Satoshi's pokemon, Orchid-Hakase, Kenji, and Satoshi's mom are able to track down the Rocket duo and confront them.  Our heroes battle with Yamato and Kosaburou, eventually overpowering them with their combined strength.  As the duo is sent blasting off again, Kenji retrieves the Monster Balls that had been stolen.  With the knowledge that the pokemon on the ranch work hard to keep intruders away, Orchid-Hakase is allowed to resume his research.

Eh...the Orchid-Hakase specials aren't all that interesting to me.  I mean, it's good to see minor characters like Kenji and Hanako step it up and show that they're not completely useless, but at the same time these specials show me how boring the show would be if it only chronicled the adventures of Orchid-Hakase, Kenji, and Hanako.

This episode also marks the first time Yamato and Kosaburou make an appearance in a Weekly Pokemon Broadcasting Station episode.  The duo will become the Rockets of choice for the rest of the series, getting more screentime than they ever did before.  However, by the end of the series, the menacing, competent Rockets we saw in "The Breeding Center Secret" get replaced by bumbling, uninteresting clones of Musashi and Kojirou.  It's really quite sad.

The dubbed version goes back to the quality we saw in "A Family That Battles Together Stays Together!."  The writing, unlike the last episode, is pretty much crap, and the dubbers manage to edit out quite a few chunks of the episode.  And then there's that line at the end of the episode that just totally threw me off and brought the dub to a whole new level of suckiness.

For your reference, this episode was released between episodes AG 007, "The Forest of Kimori!  Protect the Colossal Tree!!" ("Tree's a Crowd") and AG 008, "Habunake VS Kimori!  The Pound Attack of Certain Kills!!" ("A Tail with a Twist").  In the Japanese version, Hyaku Gojuu-Ichi is used as the episode's ending theme.

Bayleaf, Kingler, Kentauros, Nidoking, Poppoko, and Yorunozuku all keep their Japanese voices.

Music Edit

The background music's all been replaced, bla bla bla.  The thing about this episode is that the background music in the Japanese version is scored better than usual, making its replacement even more unfortunate.  We get to hear some old Kanto background music we haven't heard in a while, and we also get to hear a long version of that instrumental version of OK! that's used during battle scenes in a bunch of Jouto episodes.  While there are two pieces of Japanese background music in the dub (the Rocket-Dan "sneaking around" music and the Hoenn motto music), both of those were added by 4Kids and replace other Japanese music.  So really, like every other Chronicles episode, the only Japanese music that's really kept is the title screen music.

Cut--2 seconds
The first shot of the episode is shortened by two seconds.

Dialogue Edit
Oh goody...we're back to the same crappy script writing of the older Chronicles episodes.

Oak:  "What rhymes with Tauros?  Besides morose?"
Tracey:  "How 'bout Carbos?  As in the carbo boosters I mixed in with today's lunch?"
Oak:  "Ooh.  Tell me how they like it."

In the Japanese version, Orchid-Hakase was commenting on how rare it is for a helicopter to be flying over a small place like Masara Town.  Then, Kenji tells Orchid-Hakase that it's time to feed the pokemon, for which Orchid-Hakase thanks him.

The dub will sort of make Professor Oak's quest to find a word that rhymes with Tauros a running theme in the episode for no real reason.  It's not present in the Japanese version
at all, and, as we'll see later, it's only added to push the idea of a Oak/Delia relationship.

Cut--3 seconds altogether

The first shot of Yamato and Kosaburou is shortened by a second in the dub.

Later, during the shot of Yamato and Kosaburou scheming in the bushes (after the episode's title screen), a two second long pan up from the Rockets to the sky above is removed from the dub.


Side Note
So how much does the Magikarp Salesman voice suck in this episode?  Instead of giving him the voice he's had in the Kanto and Hoenn episodes, 4Kids gives him their standard "decrepit old man" voice.  Shouldn't 4Kids be embarrassed at how little continuity there is between the main series and Pokémon Chronicles?

Cut--17 seconds
After the Magikarp salesman says "That Magikarp lays golden eggs!" a seventeen-second scene of the salesman continuing to talk is removed from the dub.

Koiking Salesman

Dialogue Edit
More fun with script rewrites.

Mrs. Ketchum:  "I brought you some cookies, but...maybe I should come back another time."
Tracey:  "Now's a betch time...I mean great time!"
Mrs. Ketchum:  "Are you sure?  You seem like you're rather busy."
Tracey:  "You can never be too busy for cookies.  Come on in!"
Oak:  "Welcome you two!  You wouldn't happen to know a word that rhymes with Tauros, would you?"

First of all...I have no idea what Tracey's saying in his first line.  When I first heard it, I thought he randomly said the word bitch, but of course that's not the case.  However, I still haven't figured out what he's supposed to be saying there.

Secondly, Kenji originally explained to Hanako (who everyone awkwardly calls Mama-san in this episode) about the "weird man" who had just been kicked out of the home.  In the dub, he just talks about wanting cookies.

Finally, Orchid-Hakase's line in the original was thanking Hanako for always bringing them goodies.  None of this "what rhymes with Tauros?" crap.

Cut--8 seconds altogether
Three seconds are shaved from the next shot of Fushigidane walking.

Also, you know those pokemon scene transition things that occur in between just about every scene?  Well, 4Kids decided to cut a bunch of them to save time, which is actually the least damaging thing they could do to the episode since they do go a little overboard with them in the original version.

Anyway, a second-long transition is removed from between the scene where Nazonokusa talks to Fushigidane and the scene where Nazonokusa takes Fushigidane to that rock where it came across the Rocket duo.

Later, another transition is removed.  This time, it occurs between the shot of Fushigidane and the shot of Barriered sweeping up Orchid-Hakase's house.  In addition, there's a two-second close-up of Barriered's broom that's removed completely from the dub.


By the way, that pan shot of Barriered sweeping?  It was a second longer in the Japanese version.

Dialogue Edit
The trend of "making ish up" continues.

Mrs. Ketchum:  "I love Petalburg City.  I hope he manages to catch a Zigzagoon.  I've always wanted to see one of those things."

Originally, Hanako talked about how she'd heard that Satoshi had made two new friends:  Haruka and Masato.  She also expresses how happy she is to hear that he's making friends on his new journey.

Cut--1 second
A second is trimmed from the shot of the Rocket-Dan climbing into Orchid-Hakase's house through the window.

Dialogue Edit
This is beyond lame.

Cassidy:  "We're so much better than those two bumbling morons, Jessie and James."
Butch:  "Messy and Lames!"

Not only is it a bad piece of dialogue, but "Messy and Lames" are the names used in Mad Magazine's parody of the anime back in the late 90's.  Take a look.

In my opinion, Mad Magazine is only funny to that special group of people between the ages of twelve and twelve and a half.  Since I don't fall in that age group, I can say that ripping it off isn't exactly the best way to make a scene "funny."

Cut--1 second
A second-long transition between the Rocket-Dan scene and the scene with Kenji is removed.  This one's easy to spot because the last split-second of the little jingle that plays during these transitions can still be heard in the dub.

Dialogue Edit
By now, you should realize that every time either Professor Oak or Delia speaks in the dub, they're saying something that isn't even close to what's being said in the Japanese version.

Professor Oak:  "Would you and Mr. Mime like to stay for dinner tonight?  I can download one of these recipes."
Delia:  "I've got a better idea!  We'll make dinner!  Mr. Mime is an excellent cook!"
Cassidy:  "How totally lame-o!"

You can say that again, Cassidy.  You can say that again.

Originally, Orchid-Hakase was continuing his conversation about Satoshi's journey in Houen, saying he hadn't caught any pokemon yet.  He says Satoshi's sure to catch one soon, which makes Hanako wonder what kind of pokemon it'll be; a strong one or a cute one?

I guess this episode is meant to take place between
"Touka Gym!  (Pikachu) vs. Yarukimono!" and "Full of Subame, Full of Peril!  I Got One in the Forest of Touka!!" but aired later for some reason.  Whenever this episode is supposed to take place, Orchid-Hakase wasn't talking about "downloading recipes" in the Japanese version.

Cut--1 second
Another transition edit...this one happens between the scene where Yamato and Kosaburou steal all the Monster Balls and the close-up of the hole they left in the window.  This transition, like all the others, lasts one second.

Added footage--3 seconds
When Professor Oak and the gang find the storage room empty, we see the pan shot of the empty shelves twice; once before the commercial break and again afterwards.  In the original version, this shot is only played once.

Cut--23 seconds altogether
A one-second long transition is removed after Tracey's "Alright!  We'll get 'em!"

The shot of Nidoking coming out of the bushes to approach "Nidoqueen" is shortened by a second in the dub.

And the big cut of the episode would be the removal of a large portion of what I call the "Yamato almost gets molested by a Nidoking" scene.  Basically, Nidoking approaches Yamato, who's dressed like a Nidoqueen, and starts chasing her around.  This much we see in the dub.  What happens between Cassidy's "Shoo!  Go!  No!  No!" and the shot of her flying through the air is more advances by Nidoking.  The pokemon approaches Yamato, who's up against a tree, so she starts to kick it repeatedly.  The pokemon then lunges at Yamato, tackles her to the ground before picking her up and throwing her like a rag doll

I mean, it's not that bad, but in the context of "Nidoking likes you romantically," the scene takes on this really eerie vibe.  I'm not surprised that a scene of Yamato almost getting some from a Nidoking was removed from the dub.  This whole sequence lasted twelve seconds.


Click here to view more images from this scene.

Later, the first shot of Yorunozuku flying over the forest before it spots the Rocket-Dan's helicopter is shortened by a second in the dub.

Another second-long transition is removed between the aforementioned Yorunozuku scene and the scene with Kenji.

In the scene where Cassidy says "Come on, now's our chance!," Butch, in his Golem costume, sits on the ground two seconds longer in the Japanese version before getting up and following his teammate.

Waninoko dances for Betobeton four seconds longer in the Japanese version than it does in the dub.

A second-long transition is cut between the above dancing scene and the shot of Kenji discovering the Rocket-Dan's helicopter.

Finally, a two-second transition is cut between the shot of Kenji discovering the helicopter and Waninoko telling Orchid-Hakase's group that something strange is going on.

Dialogue Edit
In the dub, Tracey mistakes Butch's name as "Biff" and Hanako mistakes his name as "Bill."  In the regular TV dub, the group always mistakes his name for "Botch," but I guess 4Kids forgot that little bit.  Ah well.  Originally, the two heroes mistake Kosaburou's name for "Kosanji," same as always.

And then there's this line at the end of the episode:

Narrator:  "And so life at Oak Laboratory return to normal.  And Miss Ketchum felt for sure that Professor Oak's love poem was about her.  But then again, so did Bulbasaur."
Bulbasaur:  "Bulbasaur!"


I don't think I even have to tell you that the dialogue isn't even CLOSE to a translation of what's said in the Japanese version.  Originally, we don't hear Orchid-Hakase saying anything in the part where Professor Oak says his "love poem."  Instead, the narrator just says that now that all the Monster Balls have been retrieved, the daily peace that the pokemon enjoyed before the Rocket-Dan's attack has returned. 

I really don't see what 4Kids is trying to achieve here.  I mean yeah, replacing stock narrator dialogue with something more interesting may seem like a good idea on paper, but when you see it in action, you realize what a horribly out-of-character thing it is to do in the context of this anime.  By ending the episode on this note, 4Kids almost makes it look like the whole point of the episode was the relationship between Oak and Delia, something that most certainly is not the case in the Japanese version.  It's one thing to tinker with the backgrounds with the characters in "The Legend of Thunder," who are all mostly one-shots.  It's a completely different thing to tinker with the backgrounds of characters who have been established in the main series for years and years now.

There's also the fact that the sentence is grammatically incorrect (there should be an s at the end of return) and that the narrator called her Miss Ketchum when they've been calling her Mrs. Ketchum the whole episode. 

*sigh*  And I'm not even at the halfway point for the series yet.

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