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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | TV Specials
Pokemon Sunday Episode 280: "Pokemon Ranger and the Tracks of Light" (Part One)"
Pokemon.com Special Episode: "Pokémon Ranger Guardian Signs" (first half)
Japanese Air Date: February 28th, 2010
American Air Date: November 10th, 2010
Important Characters: Natsuya (Ben), Pokemon Nappers (Pokémon Pinchers), Red Eye (Red Eyes), Shinbara-Kyouju (Professor Hastings)
Important Places: Oblivia Region (Oblivia Region), Dorop Island (Dolce Island), Ranger Union (Ranger Union)
skies of the Oblivia region, a pair of Pokemon Nappers are chasing
after a Latios. Suddenly, a young boy riding on a Mukuhawk
appears! After learning that the mysterious boy knows who they
are, the Nappers shoot at him with energy cannons mounted on their
flying machines. Soon after, the
female grunt notices his red goggles and yellow scarf and identifies
him as a Pokemon Ranger! The young Ranger, named Natsuya, had
received orders from the Ranger Union to go to the region in order to
stop the Pokemon Nappers. The Pokemon Nappers, he learned, are an
evil team who capture pokemon and control them for their own nefarious
purposes. After using a device known as a Capture Styler to
capture a wild Mukuhawk, Natsuya took off toward the Oblivia
Region. Eventually, Natsuya's interference enables Latios to
escape, so the Nappers decide to ignore him and chase after the
pokemon. Natsuya begins to follow them until an energy blast hits
him from above. The attack knocks him off his Mukuhawk and throws
him into the sea below! The Pokemon Nappers members look up and
discover that their leader, Red Eye, was the one who got rid of the
Pokemon Ranger for them. Below, Natsuya washes up on Dorop
Island. After waking up, he spots a Pichu with a ukulele!
The pokemon attacks him, so Natsuya decides to use his Capture Styler
to calm it down. Will he be able to capture Pichu
and resume chasing after the Pokemon Nappers? To be continued!
So I got up on
the Sunday morning this premiered on TV-Tokyo to watch an animated
special of a
game I was eagerly anticipating. I hated getting up for Pokemon Sunday and I feel like my
mind is dying whenever I watched the live action segments, but I put up
with it to see this special. So imagine my disappointment when,
after sitting through the entire hour, I only got a four minute
I don't really
understand why they only gave
us two four minute shorts. Did they just not have a budget to do
any more than that? Were they afraid of giving away too much of
the game's plot even though they didn't even cover the Ranger Signs,
one of the major draws (no pun intended) of the sequel? Are the
"Shoko-tan" that much more important to Japanese elementary school
I don't know the
answers; all I know is that it is what it is. I guess I should be
thankful - eight minutes is better than nothing, after all - but I'm
still hungry for more.
"episode" is only about four minutes long, there isn't that much I
can comment on. This half tries to cram so many game events into
its four minute runtime that it has no room for any of the characters
to showcase anything resembling a personality. Natsuya, in
particular, could not be any more uninteresting if he tried. I do
like how we get to see some game-only characters like Red Eye and
Shinbara-Kyouju, though. I particularly enjoyed the latter
frankly, he's a character I feel like should have made his debut long ago. Seeing the Ranger
Union in animated form was also a nice treat.
When this special
was originally aired on Pokemon
Sunday, the show was being cropped to 4:3 for analog TVs, so
this animated special got cropped as well. The online stream that
would go up after this episode aired, as well as the rental-only DVD
available at Tsutaya, present the show in its proper 16:9 aspect ratio.
Much to my
surprise, a dubbed version showed up on Pokemon.com about a month after the
game was released. The two shorts were edited together to make
one longer short, so the ending of this short and the recap in the next
short got cut. The script is pretty faithful and all the Japanese
music is kept intact, so there really isn't much to complain
about. I'm beyond tired of hearing Lisa Ortiz so damn much, but
she plays such a minor character in this thing that it's easy to
The Ukulele Pichu
keeps its Japanese voice.
First up, "Skies
above the Oblivia Region."
Click on each image for a larger version.
The Ranger Union.
Dorop Island. The name of this island in the English version of the game is Dolce Island, but this special misspells it as "Dolche Island" for some reason.
Also, sorry about the image quality of the Japanese screenshot. The rental DVD I used for this looks like crap whenever there's a pan shot like that.
Next up is the Capture Styler. Notice how the background is a little off, too?
Click on each image for a larger version.
Cut - 10 seconds
The last ten seconds of the special, which consist of a pan-up shot of Dorop Island and a "To Be Continued" screen, are removed from the dub. During this scene, the narrator questions whether or not Natsuya will be able to successfully capture the Ukulele Pichu and tells us that the story is only just beginning.
Since the dub combines the two specials into one, this cliffhanger inviting viewers to tune in the following week to see what happens got cut.
Pokemon Ranger Guardian Signs Continues...
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