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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Diamond & Pearl
Japanese Episode DP 156: "Fukamaru and Meteoric Swarm!!"
American Episode 1251: "A Meteoric Rise to Excellence!"
Japanese Air Date: December 17th, 2009
American Air Date: May 8th, 2010
Important Characters: Tatsu-baasan (Grandma Wilma)
Satoshi and his friends are busy trying to figure out where they are when they notice a strange light in the sky. Curious to see what it could be, they follow it to a rocky area riddled with holes. There, an old woman named Tatsu-baasan is teaching a Tyltalis to use Meteoric Swarm, a powerful Dragon-type attack that sends meteors raining down on its target. A wild Fukamaru that Tatsu-baasan had befriended is also trying to learn the attack, but it's not quite as successful. Satoshi decides to try teaching the technique, but his attempt is interrupted when the Rocket-Dan appear and kidnap Tyltalis. Eventually, Satoshi's Mukuhawk is able to catch up to the trio's balloon, but by that point the trio had switched over to a Tyltalis-shaped tank instead. Meanwhile, the captured pokemon manages to free itself from the Rocket-Dan's mecha, forcing its captors to stop their getaway to re-capture it. During this time, the wild Fukamaru, who had been following the trio, devours the Rocket-Dan's robot! With the Rocket-Dan's getaway vehicle destroyed, Satoshi and his friends are able to catch up to the trio. A battle begins, and Fukamaru is able to use Meteoric Swarm to blow the Rocket-Dan away. Everyone congratulates Fukamaru for learning the attack, but they soon discover that its performance was just a fluke. Later, Tatsu-baasan tells our heroes how to get back on the road to Asatsuki Town. As the trio sets off, the wild Fukamaru decides to start following them from afar. To be continued!
It's kind of funny how great animation will make an OK episode stand out. This episode had a lot of good things going for it, sure, but the animation in this one really helped push things over the top. There were a ton of great expressions in this one, some really stylistic art, and this overall polish to everything that made the episode a joy to look at.
It was also really nice seeing everyone be somewhat competent for a change. Tatsu-baasan hitching a ride on Takeshi because she knew she wouldn't have been able to keep up with the others on her own? Hikari calling out her Mammoo to cushion her fall? The Rocket-Dan ditching their balloon and setting up a trap in it because they knew Satoshi would send his Mukuhawk out after them? Tyltalis managing to free itself before any of the others could catch up to it? Brilliant.
But, like I said, the episode was OK. Not great. Take how Meteoric Swarm is built up to be this super mega ultra attack, for example. Yeah, it's powerful in the games, but I can't fathom why anyone in the TV series would think the same thing. So a pokemon concentrates to build up enough power to launch an energy ball into the air that then causes meteors to fall down in a circle around its user? Really? Even if the charging time that leaves the pokemon wide open for attack is cut down, it could still be avoided simply by take a step forward or backward. As for its supposed power? Sure, it's powerful enough to blast off the Rocket-Dan, but is that saying much?
I was also a little annoyed with Satoshi in this episode when he offers to train Fukamaru. He basically butts in and indirectly tells Tatsu-baasan that she sucks at what she does and that he can do a better job than her. And then, all he does is repeat exactly what Tatsu-baasan had been telling it before? Sorry, Satoshi fans, but he really comes off as a bit of a dick in this one.
The dubbed version of this episode has the same music issues that plague almost every other episode, but it hurts in this one particularly because the music used in the original helped to amplify the comedy.
The Rocket-Dan recite a slightly different version of their motto this time around. Here's the Japanese version:
And here's my translation:
Musashi: "When we hear a voice saying "Who are you guys!?""
Kojirou: "We show up with the shooting stars."
Musashi: "The moon!"
Kojirou: "The stars!"
Nyasu: "The meteorites!!"
Musashi: "The word "dangerous" is received by the world!"
Kojirou: "The word "crisis" is transmitted to outer space!"
Musashi: "Whether you call us angels or devils,"
Kojirou: "Anyone would tremble at that captivating sound"
Nyasu: "It's Nyasu na!"
Musashi: "This era belongs to us three!"
Kojirou: "We are the invincible"
The English version is as follows:
Jessie: "Listen! Crooked is as crooked does."
James: "That includes poaching poffy Pokémon with fuzz"
Jessie: "On the wind!"
James: "Past the stars!"
Meowth: "Yeah, what's the buzz?"
Jessie: "Bringing chaos at a breakneck pace."
James: "Dashing hope, putting fear in its place."
Jessie: "A rose by any other name's just as sweet."
James: "When everything's worse, our work is complete."
James: "And James!"
Meowth: "And Meowth, that's a name!"
Jessie: "Putting teacher in her place."
James: "We're Team Rocket,"
Team Rocket: "And we're in your face!"
Mime Jr: "Mime Mime Mime!"
It's kind of weird that the dub wouldn't take the whole meteor thing and run with it, given the opportunity and all.
The rest of these dialogue edits occur in the second half of the episode.
The first one shows up when Ash goes to rescue Staraptor from Team Rocket's net:
Ash: "I can't believe even Team Rocket would pull a stunt like this."
"Even Team Rocket?" So, are you saying that you're surprised they did something like this?
Satoshi simply curses the Rocket-Dan for setting up that trap in the original.
After this shot, which surprisingly made it into the dub,
...we get the following:
Jessie: "What's with you? If you're bored, go watch TV."
This is a minor change, but originally, Musashi asks Fukamaru what it was looking at. Which almost sounds like her addressing the ass shot that preceded it.
After Gible chows down on Team Rocket's robot:
James: "Our most expensive robot, reduced to a snack!"
There's absolutely nothing in the Japanese script to suggest that this was their "most expensive" robot. Kojirou simply says that it's "precious."
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