Japanese Episode
AG 127






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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Houen Region

Episode AG 127
Episode Stats:

Japanese Episode AG 127: "The Start of the Preliminaries!  Masamune Enters!"
American Episode 397: "Saved by the Beldum"
Orchid-Hakase Pokemon Lecture:  Houen League information

Japanese Air Date:  April 28th, 2005
American Air Date:  March 11th, 2006
Important Characters:  Jump (N/A), Yuriko (Vivica), Genki (Gilbert)

The day before the start of the Houen League championship, Satoshi and his friends run across Masamune, the rival Satoshi met before the Grand Festival.  Masamune has succeeded in collecting his final badge and is now able to compete in the league!  After fending off an attack by the Rocket-Dan, Masamune rushes off to register for the league.  The next day, the preliminaries to determine who will be one of the 250 trainers to advance to the first round begins.  Masamune's Dumbel has trouble against a trainer's Elebuu until it evolves into Metang in the middle of the battle, giving it enough power to win the match.  Next up is Tetsuya's Nyasu against a trainer's Persian.  Tetsuya's pokemon wins the battle, but its desire to continue beating Persian after the match has ended causes everyone to worry.  After the battle, Tetsuya explains Nyasu's behavior by saying it once lost to a Persian and has had a vendetta against the pokemon ever since.  As the league continues, Satoshi's Pikachu wins its match against a trainer's Sawamura.  The preliminaries have finally concluded, and Satoshi, Masamune, and Tetsuya have all made it into the first round!  Who will emerge victorious in the Saiyuu Convention?  To be continued!


Thoughts
The beginning of the Houen League, like every league that's come before it, has a very good start.  The battles are really interesting, everyone is given a chance in the spotlight, and we even manage to squeeze in a backstory for Tetsuya's Nyasu.  Not too shabby.

The dubbed version was kind of irritating to me.  Sean Schemmel is using the worst character voice he has in his arsenal (King Kai) for Morrison, and I'm not looking forward to listening to this guy for the next handful of episodes.  In addition, the voice they gave Jump (the Yasopp-looking guy who has that Elebuu) is just terrible.  It's the most grating voice I've ever had the displeasure of hearing, and when coupled with some of the lamest lines 4Kids could give him ("Wow, this is sweeter than a candy cane!") you get the worst vocal performance in the history of the Pokémon dub.  Congratulations, Butch.  You've just been outranked.

The music in the Japanese version also kicks the ass of the music used in the dub, particularly in the scenes where Tetsuya's Nyasu KO's that Persian and the flashback that explains why it acted the way it did.  I've said it before, and I'll say it again...why 4Kids?  Why don't you use music we know you have the rights to?

And then we have the riceball edit, but at this point it's not as exciting as it used to be. 

Metang and Persian keep their Japanese voices.

Cut--4 seconds altogether
The first shot of the episode is shortened by two seconds.

Later, the episode's title screen has two seconds trimmed from it.

Paint Edit
The return of the lame onigiri-to-sandwich edit!

Japanese American

Look, they just recycled the sandwich they used in "Less is Morrison." 

Japanese American

Click on each image to view a larger version.

It's kinda funny, really.  About a year ago, everyone was freaking out when an onigiri was changed into a sandwich in "Judgment Day."  Nowadays, no one really seems to care anymore.

Cut--4 seconds
When Tyson's Meowth is staring at Vivica's Persian, we see a shot of Meowth's face, then Persian's, then Meowth's again, and then Persian's again.  In the Japanese version, there was a commercial break between the first shot of Persian and the second shot of Nyasu, and a four-second shot of the stadium was shown after the show got back from break. 

Stadium

This shot is removed from the dub.

Video Edit
When Sawamura uses Megaton Kick on Pikachu toward the end of their battle, 4Kids adds a full screen impact star to cover up the actual connection of Sawamura's foot with Pikachu's body.

Japanese

Cut--4 seconds altogether
Two seconds are trimmed from the shot right after Kids' WB!'s final commercial break.

Finally, the TO BE CONTINUED... screen is shortened by two seconds.

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