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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Kanto Region
Japanese Episode 068: "The Kusaihana of the Botanical Garden"
American Episode 214: "Make Room for Gloom"
Pokemon Dare Da? Kusaihana (Japanese), Clefable (English)
Dr. Orchid's Pokemon Lecture: Wanriky
Japanese Air Date: October 29th, 1998
American Air Date: October 4th, 1999
Important Characters: Lady Lindow Murasame (Florinda Showers), Iwakaze (Potter)
Important Places: Murasame Botanical Garden (Xanadu Nursery)
In an effort to get out of doing yard work for his mother, Satoshi and his friends escape into a nearby forest. There, they come across the Murasame Botanical Garden, a massive greenhouse that houses all sorts of rare and unusual plants. After being let in by a young man named Iwakaze, Satoshi decides to let his Fushigidane out to roam around freely. Suddenly Fushigidane falls over, unable to move! Lindow, the aspiring successor to the garden, brings Fushigidane into her house where she has her Kusaihana make Satoshi's pokemon an antidote. She later explains that she can't get her Kusaihana to evolve, even though she's bought a Leaf Stone and everything, so she's concluded that she just doesn't have what it takes to run the garden. Before long, however, our heroes discover that the Leaf Stone she used is a fake sold to them by the Rocket-Dan! Just then an alarm goes off alerting everyone that Musashi, Kojirou, and Nyarth have broken into the greenhouse! The trio paralyzes our heroes so it's now up to Lindow and her Kusaihana to deal with the intruders. Though she's unsure of herself in the beginning, Lindow is eventually able to defeat the Rocket trio by having her Kusaihana use a surprisingly powerful Solar Beam attack. Now that Lindow has confidence in herself as a Trainer, she's ready to start running the Murasame Botanical Garden along with Iwakaze. Meanwhile, Kasumi worries that they've lost yet another day of training for the Pokemon League...
When I think back on all the memorable episodes during the Kanto portion of this show "The Kusaihana of the Botanical Garden" is probably one of the last ones that pop into mind. Like, I'll watch it but then if you ask me 30 minutes later what happened I'll almost always draw a blank. It just doesn't stand out to me.
I don't think the problem is with the episode itself. I think it's a decent episode that just happens to get lost in the middle of a sea of truly great ones. There's humor, but it's not the over-the-top cartoon shenanigans humor that Kanto is known for. There's drama, but it's drama that's more or less rooted in reality and not the more over-melodramatic stuff we've become accustomed to. There are human characters who have interesting problems and who are eventually able to grow but they're also meek and shy and not the sort of shouting psychopaths we've become so accustomed to in Kanto. Compared to the rest of the saga, "The Kusaihana of the Botanical Garden" just seems kind of quaint, y'know?
Still, like I said, it's a decent enough episode. "Takeshi falls for a young girl and will do anything to help her" hasn't become the worn out trope it'll become in later years but you can see the writers sort of laying the groundwork for the type of character they'll turn him into in the Jouto saga, for better or for worse. Lady Lindow and Iwakaze aren't the most interesting characters ever (Iwakaze's personality is...what, exactly?) but the former's description of the Rocket trio and the fact that her Kusaihana just happens to know Solar Beam were pretty nice highlights for me.
I also like how the episode tied the location of the day into our hero's past by making the Murasame Botanical Garden be somewhere that Satoshi and his mom have visited before. It's a tiny little detail that adds nothing to the series, in the grand scheme of things, but I appreciate getting this little glimpse into Satoshi's past nonetheless. Other random highlights include the whole episode starting because a ten-year-old boy wants to get out of doing chores, our heroes freaking out because they think Iwakaze is just walking around a greenhouse with a flamethrower attached to his back, and Dr. Orchid suddenly doing Junsar's job for some reason.
You know how the previous episode comparison was short because 4Kids' script wasn't godawful for a change? Well guess what! It seems like that was a one-off fluke because the script for this one is probably about ten times worse! Now, to be fair there is a lot more going on in this episode on a localization level - more puns, more obscure references - but I'd still say the majority of the dialogue edits in the script weren't really necessary at all. This episode also marks the return of 4Kids' digital paint software, which hasn't gotten much of a workout lately but is used in this one for some truly baffling edits. Like, why even bother with half the changes I'll go into below? Why does 4Kids love making more work for themselves (and for me!) than they absolutely need to?
Dodrio keeps its Japanese voice.
After Pikachu shocks Ash:
Misty: "What's that...? Ugh, smells like Brock burnt the eggs."
The "What's that...?" is in the original (ん～もう何なのよ？) but then the camera pans down and we can't see Kasumi's mouth move anymore and so 4Kids decides to pull the classic hackdub move of adding some off-screen dialogue just because. This time, the gem they went with is "hey, my good friend smells fucking disgusting!"
Next up is a good ol' fashioned food edit:
Brock: "Two eggs, sunny side down, for Ash. And my super secret recipe mystery omelet for Misty."
There's no mystery in the Japanese version; originally Takeshi straight up says that he's making fried eggs with soy sauce on them (カスミはしょうゆの入った卵焼きだったね).
Also, Satoshi's order was eggs served sunny side up in the original but this got changed to sunny side down for the English dub.
Ash tries to get out of helping his mom because he is just the worst:
Delia: "Where are you training today?"
Ash: "Uh, well...uh...Well, today we're all going to climb up into the mountains for some really tough training."
The "really tough training" Ash mentions here was originally him going up to the mountains to sit under a running waterfall to train his body and mind (滝に打たれて精神を鍛えるんだよ).
Ash continues to be a little dick:
Ash: "You don't know my mom! I'd rather climb mountains than do chores for her! She'd have me working so hard in her garden that I'd be too wiped out to battle in the Pokémon League!"
Brock: "I bet your mom would make a great Pokémon Trainer."
Brock's line really just kind of comes out of nowhere, doesn't it? What part of any of what Ash just said led him to say that?
Originally Takeshi is surprised to hear that Hanako could have a strict side to her since she's usually such a sweet and doting mother (意外だな～あんなに優しいママが).
But apparently, Delia's actually kind of crappy:
Delia: "Oh kids? On your way back from the mountains could you stop by the Xanadu Nursery and pick up 300 or 400 pounds of fertilizer for me?"
Can you imagine if Ash and his friends actually did what Delia asks here? Three pre-teens go up a mountain and, after a long day of training, ask someone at some nursery somewhere (which will be playing this song over the loudspeakers, obviously) for about 150 kilograms of literal shit? And then there's a scene of children shoveling feces into the back of this cart, like the Poopsmith or something like that, and then maybe there's a scene of Pikachu running around to keep Togepi from splashing around in it like a disgusting baby? And then, once their grim task is finished, our trio of heroes pull this cart filled with manure down a hill, struggling to keep it steady and hoping to God that none of it spills out on the way down.
Originally Hanako merely asks her child and his friends to bring back a cartful of herbs.
The Xanadu Nursery was originally called the Murasame (Botanical) Garden in the Japanese version.
Kind of weird that 4Kids didn't add "Nursery" at the bottom of their sign there and left a big ol' blank there, isn't it?
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Ash and his friends arrive at Xanadu:
To be perfectly fair, the Japanese dialogue is really tricky because Takeshi is taking the Japanese translation of an old Chinese poem by Du Fu (杜甫) called Spring View (春望) and then changes the words around a little (in the original it's "In the castle in spring") so that he's talking about how run down the garden is instead. Why a 15 year old Japanese kid would be quoting an old Chinese poem from memory is anyone's guess.
And then, Satoshi takes one of the words in the poem, soumokufukashi (草木深し) or "grass and trees are thick," and mishears it as fukashi-imo (ふかしイモ), or "steamed potatoes." Because sometimes this show likes to pretend like being a glutton is one of Satoshi's character quirks for some reason. The whole thing is pretty much a localizer's nightmare.
Luckily for 4Kids, all of this dialogue takes place off camera and so they're able to swap out this little back and forth among three characters with just two characters speaking more or less independently with really no problem whatsoever. It's not as playful as the original and surely 4Kids could have kept the joke by having Brock not quote some old Chinese poem but the version we end up with is more or less fine.
...Except for the part at the beginning where Ash talks about "the man who owned it" moving away because there was no similar backstory in the Japanese version at all.
Some punny stuff:
Ash: "Huh? You're getting misty over a Gloom?"
Misty: "What are you saying about me?"
Pretty decent, 4Kids! Originally Satoshi says that "it's just a Kusaihana" (あれってクサイハナじゃないか) and so Kasumi replies "What was that? Who are you saying stinks here?" (んん？誰が臭いって？), with the joke being that Kasumi hears the word kusai ("stinks") in the word Kusaihana (as in the pokemon) and assumes he's talking about her.
Later, we meet Potter, a character who is very obviously just Ted Lewis using what would later become his Tracey voice. In the Japanese version both Iwakaze and (sometimes) Takeshi refer to Lindow as "Lady Lindow" (リンドウお嬢様) but in the English dub they just call her "Florinda" without any honorifics.
Harry Potter introduces Florinda:
Brock: "Um, when we first got here I saw a girl inside the greenhouse."
Potter: "Oh, you must be talking about Florinda."
Brock: "Eh~ Florinda. What a beautiful name for a wife."
Whoa, Brock, slow down a minute there! Especially since the original line doesn't have Takeshi mention anything about marriage at all; he just mentions how beautiful her name is (リンドウ？なんて美しい名前だ).
After Fushigidane gets a whiff of the Pokemon Silver Vine (ポケモンマタタビ), which the dub localizes as Pokénip, the Grass-Type pokemon starts to act like it's drunk. In addition to the animation of Fushigidane kind stumbling around, its voice actor Megumi Hayashibara kind of slurs her speech and adds hiccups here and there to really sell the idea that Satoshi's Fushigidane is feeling kinda great right now.
This whole "Fushigidane is low-key drunk" bit is downplayed quite a lot in the English dub. While there are no edits to the animation at all the speech is less slurred and all of the hiccups are removed.
The sign explaining the aforementioned Pokénip:
So 4Kids' whole thing is erasing text, right? Over the last year and a half the company has removing the text off of dozens and dozens of signs, buildings, posters, items, clothing, and anything else that might give away the fact that the people in the Pokemon World are in any way literate.
And yet here...they actually add text when there was nothing there originally. I mean, I guess the Japanese version does look a little empty here but at the same time I can't imagine looking at this and thinking "You know what we need to do? Spend money on this."
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Misty reads the description of Pokénip:
Misty: "Pokénip...hmm, it says its smell affects Pokémon like catnip affects cats."
There's no mention of real world cats in the Japanese version; instead, Kasumi reads that when Grass-Type pokemon smell this plant they start to feel really good (草ポケモンがこれを嗅ぐといい気分になっちゃうんだって).
Florinda's first big conversation with Brock is pretty different:
The Japanese version makes it pretty clear that Lady Lindow getting her Kusaihana to full maturity, by having it evolve into a Rafflesia, is one of the pre-requisites to her being able to take over the botanical garden. The English dub is less clear.
Takeshi's line also gets completely rewritten, and the dub has Lady Lindow respond with a rather depressing "I'm a failure of a daughter" proclamation instead.
Brock tries to cheer her up:
Florinda: "It's all my fault. I guess the reason why Gloom won't evolve is because I haven't given it enough love."
Brock: "No! Florinda, don't you see? You love Gloom so much that it doesn't get gloomy and that's the reason why it doesn't evolve."
Takeshi's line is what gets rewritten here; originally he says "No...the reason Kusaihana doesn't stink is because you've been showing it with so much love" (いやクサイハナが臭くないのはリンドウさんあなたの愛情が注がれているからですよ). It has the same kusai / Kusaihana wordplay as before, addresses an aspect of the pokemon that the dub completely glosses over (Gloom's smell), and doesn't have Takeshi try to asspull an explanation as to why Lindow's pokemon won't evolve. It's a win-win-win!
Team Rocket's motto:
The second cat reference of the episode! And, just like the last one, this one isn't in the Japanese version either.
The very next line!
Meowth: "Maybe we ought to get outta this place before that girl finds the Leaf Stone we sold is a fake."
James: "Don't be such a 'fraidy cat."
In the Japanese version Nyarth says that they thought they'd definitely run into some rare pokemon if they followed Dr. Orchid all the way out to a place like this but so far this doesn't seem to be the case. Nyarth isn't really concerned about Lady Lindow at all.
Also, Kojirou doesn't mention real world cats at all and instead says that it'd be a waste to come out all this way and come back empty handed.
The weird text additions continue.
I really don't get it.
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Team Rocket sets their sights on the weed:
Jessie: "With one whiff of this weed, we're guaranteed to succeed!"
Originally Musashi notices the plant and says that, while it's not a rare pokemon like they were hoping to find, it's still something worth stealing (ポケモンじゃないけどこれ使えるんじゃない？).
Who's that Pokémon?
It's a weird fairy thing that doesn't show up in this episode at all!
Team Rocket confronts Florinda:
Florinda: "Stop that! Those plants are like children to me!"
James: "Well, look who it is!"
Jessie: "Aha~ Another unsatisfied customer."
In the Japanese version the Rocket trio recognizes Lady Lindow's voice (あ～らどこかで聞いた声だと思ったら) as the "customer from last week" (あ～ら先週のお客さんじゃない), indicating that 1) they apparently never saw Lady Lindow's face, somehow and 2) the trio's been doing this fake stone scam for at least a week at this point. None of this information is present in the dub.
The Rocket trio continues:
Jessie: "We knew we'd been bad and we wanted to change our ways. So the three of us decided to turn over a new leaf."
James: "But the leaf was fake!"
Brock: "That's not funny."
There's a different play on words in the Japanese version; there, Musashi says that Lady Lindow's at fault for not being able to recognize the stone as fake despite the fact that she's supposed to be a plant specialist (そんなもの植物の専門家のくさに…いや、くせにダマされるほうが悪いのよ). The play on words is that Musashi accidentally mixes up the kuse in kuse ni (くせに), "despite," with kusa (草), or "grass." It's a pun that doesn't work in English and so 4Kids rewrote it.
Ash decides to battle:
Brock: "We're in a greenhouse, right? So we need a Grass Pokémon like Bulbasaur!"
Ash: "Bulbasaur's the number one seed! Bulbasaur, go to it!"
So I looked it up and apparently "seed" is a sports term for the first player to be sent out? And so "Bulbasaur's the number one seed!" isn't the random non-sequitor I originally thought it to be...?
Anyway, in the original Satoshi says that he already knows what Takeshi is thinking without him having to say it (言われなくても分かってる).
Team Rocket swipes Pikachu:
Ash: "No! Pikachu!"
Jessie: (laughing) "We always knew you were too weak to be a Pokémon Trainer."
Jessie's line seems to come out of nowhere, doesn't it? That's because in the original Musashi's simply celebrating the fact that they were able to get Pikachu unexpectedly (思わぬところでピカチュウゲットでちゅ).
It's all up to Florinda now:
Brock: "Florinda, hurry! Use your Gloom to battle Team Rocket!"
Florinda: "Oh, I couldn't. I haven't trained my Gloom well enough for it to be in battle."
This time, Lady Lindow says that she's never let her Kusaihana battle before (でもわたしクサイハナを戦わせたことがないんです). The English version has her say she hasn't trained her Gloom well enough, which could also mean never letting her Pokémon battle before but isn't quite as explicit.
Florinda is going to finish them off:
Brock: "Now's your chance to win the battle with a more powerful attack!"
Florinda: "Oh, Brock, do you think a Solar Beam attack would be good?"
Brock: "Uh!? You taught Gloom the most powerful Grass Pokémon attack!?"
Florinda: "Oh, do you think I shouldn't have? I saw it in a Pokémon magazine and I thought I'd give it a try."
Brock: "No, I just hope it works."
The "I saw it in a Pokémon magazine" is the topic of this rewrite. Originally Lady Lindow says that she thought teaching Kusaihana how to use Solar Beam "is just what the daughter of any respectable family would do" (良家の子女のたしなみかと思います).
Pikachu, who's still very much paralyzed at this point, somehow manages to bite Jessie:
Jessie: "Aaaaah! You little rat!"
Guess what? There also weren't any references to real world rats in the Japanese version either! Originally Musashi just says that she got bit (イターイ！噛んだ～！).
The Murasame Garden sign gets edited again.
If nothing else 4Kids is at least thorough.
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Brock prepares a speech for Florinda:
Surprise surprise, it's nothing that couldn't have been translated without any problems whatsoever!
(also, Misty, why would the antidote make Brock all crazy and hallucinate-y?)
Florinda confesses her love to Potter:
Florinda: "Yes...I mean, I love you."
Potter: "Florinda, I love you too. I've loved you since the day I saw you but I was too afraid to tell you."
In the original version Iwakaze says that the two of them can protect and build up the Murasame Botanical Garden, together (2人でムラサメ植物園を守り育てていきましょう). The whole "I've loved you since the day I saw you" is dub only.
Ash cheers Brock up:
But Ash, didn't your mom ask you to bring back fertilizer, not flowers? At least Satoshi's going to bring her something she actually asked for here.
The final shot of the episode!
Click on each image to view a larger version.
This page was last updated on October 2nd, 2017
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