Japanese Episode
AG 034

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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Houen Region

Episode Stats:

Japanese Episode AG 034: "Hajimete no Pokemon de Dai PANIKKU!"

      ("The Great Panic of the Starter Pokemon!")
American Episode 306: "Having a Wailord of a Time"
Orchid-Hakase Pokemon Lecture: Odoru Pokemon Himitsu Kichi Special
Pokemon Dare Da?  None (Japanese), Lotad (American)
Japanese Air Date: July 17th, 2003
American Air Date:  May 22nd, 2004
Important Characters:  ??? (Stephanie)

Haruka is getting ready for her first Pokemon Contest, and in the process Masato feels that she is neglecting her other pokemon, Achamo.  After Satoshi and Takeshi explain that she cares for Achamo because it was her first pokemon, the young trainers are commissioned by Joi to take care of a set of starter pokemon while she tends to a Whaleoh.  The job goes wrong when the starter Achamo starts attacking Satoshi's pokemon, causing his Heigani to angrily engage in battle.  During the confrontation, the starter Achamo evolves into Wakashamo!  Knowing that they can't present a Wakashamo to a starting trainer, Satoshi and Masato swap Wakashamo with Haruka's Achamo in an attempt to keep Joi from figuring out what happened  The charade doesn't last for long, and after an attack from the Rocket-Dan everyone is forgiven.  Joi decides to make Wakashamo the Pokemon Center's guard pokemon while the starter Mizugorou and Kimori are chosen by a beginning trainer and her father.

What an amusing filler episode this turned out to be.  Sure, we get to learn a bit about Takeshi's first pokemon (it's about damn time), and we do see Haruka train for the upcoming Contest, but other than that nothing really happens to advance the plot.  But that doesn't mean it's a bad episode.  Seeing Satoshi and Masato trying to cover up Achamo's evolution was amusing, and the overly effeminate Kimori just cracked me up for some unknown reason.  The only thing that bothered me about this episode was Whaleoh.  It didn't do anything at all, and I really hope that the anime producers don't consider this to be its debut episode. 

The dubbing is pretty standard.  On the plus side, it seems that the censors have finally gotten over their fear of fire thing, because all of Torchic's/Combusken's fire attacks made it through without being edited.  Also, I really like Stephanie's voice; it seems to be done by a real kid, and because of that it sounds so much better than anything Tara Jayne or Lisa Oritz could pull off.  On the down side, 4Kids has yet to decide on a translation for the Rocket-Dan's promotion chant.  Come on, guys, isn't it about time you guys got around to translating a chant that's said almost as often as their motto. 

Also, the episode title just irks me.  Wailord appears for all of what...four, five scenes?  And what does it do?  It just sits there, sick and motionless, while everyone else runs after a rogue Achamo.  If 4Kids is going to put a pokemon's name in an episode title, don't you think the pokemon they use should make at least some significant contribution to the story?

Cut--6 seconds altogether
Nothing in this episode to report but time cuts.  Yay.

Two seconds are cut from the beginning of the first shot of the episode.

A second is cut from the panning shot after the title screen.

Two seconds are snipped away from the establishing shots of all the computer equipment in Kaina City's Pokemon Center/Laboratory.

A second is cut right from the end.

Side Note
Is it me, or did the dubbers add a LOT of sexual innuendo in the script of this episode?  Team Rocket sure does seem to have a theme going on in this episode, as these random quotes show:

Meowth:  "Yeah, that might be right up his tree.  You know how the boss likes having anything just so long as that thing is the biggest or the best?"

Meowth:  "That ain't all that'll be enhanced when the boss sees this!"

James:  "There's no way we're unloading this priceless package"

...and, the icing on the cake:

Team Rocket:  "It pays to have protection~!!!"

Obviously, 4Kids realizes that there are older fans out there who still watch the show.  Thanks for the heads up, 4Kids.

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