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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Orange Islands

Episode 082

Episode Stats:

Japanese Episode 082:  "The Miserable Dirigible!?"
American Episode 228:  "A Scare in the Air"
Pokemon Dare Da?  Daruma Doll (Japanese), Vulpix (English)
Japanese Air Date:  February 4th, 1999
American Air Date:  January 8th, 2000
Important Places:  Daidai Island (Valencia Island)

Satoshi and his friends are trying to figure out a way to get to Dr. Uchikido's laboratory on Daidai Island when they come across a lottery contest outside a convenience store. Satoshi unexpectedly ends up winning, earning him and his friends a free airship ride to Daidai Island! The zeppelin they get on ends up being an old derelict by the Rocket trio, whose lack of flying knowledge combined with the run-down status of the airship make for a bumpy ride. Kasumi's Togepy gets separated from the group during a bout of turbulence and so our heroes leave the passenger area to look for the baby Pokémon. Shenanigans ensue when Purin, who had snuck onboard earlier, is mistaken for a ghost by both Satoshi's group and the Rocket trio. Eventually our heroes cross path with the Rocket trio and launch into a Pokémon battle during which a hole is ripped into the side of the balloon. As air leaks out of the dirigible Kasumi finally spots her Pokémon and brings it back to safety. Now that Togepy is safe and sound Satoshi and his friends turn their attention on bringing the airship down safely. The children and their Pokémon all work together to bring the dirigible down for a safe, if not somewhat bumpy, crash landing. As luck would have it the airport they land on just happens to be on Daidai Island! Now that they've made it to their destination our heroes set their sights on Dr. Uchikido's laboratory.

Remember when traveling from one region to another was an actual event in and of itself? When getting from Point A to Point B wasn't something that just happened off-camera? These days the shows' heroes arrive in a new region before the cold opening's even over but there used to be a time when this wasn't the case.

And then! The show decides to have our heroes go to the Orange Islands not by ferry, which is how you'd get from the real world Kanto Region to the archipelago the Orange Islands are probably based on; not by airplane, which would make sense as a modern-day form of travel; but by...airship? As in those giant gas balloons that we here in the real world haven't used for commercial flight since the 1930s? Sure, why not! Screenwriter Junki Takegami recalls the amount of homework he did to write this airship episode in the book The Memorial Book of Orange Islands:

The highlight of this one is all the big action taking place inside this tiny airship. I studied things like books and movies to learn all about airships. I might even know a little something about the secrets of how airships fly now.

"The Miserable Dirigible!?" also stands out to me because it's an episode that is 100% about the human characters. There aren't really any Pokémon-of-the-day here, and the creatures who are here - Togepy, Purin - take a backseat to the overall drama of the human characters flying from one island to another. It's a great chance to take a break from the constant barrage of Pokémon! Pokémon! Pokémon! this show tends to be all about and instead allows us to spend some time with the human characters without whom this show would be nothing.

Speaking of Purin, the Balloon Pokémon is going to become something of a crutch for the writers in the Orange Islands, showing up to help them wrap up stories they just can't be bothered to write endings for otherwise. Its inclusion in this episode is...fine, I guess...? But let's be honest, it's really only in this one so it can have a reason to keep popping up in the next few months' worth of episodes. I do wish it hadn't used its song to send the Rocket trio plummeting to their death over the Pacific Ocean, though.

Rumor has it that the English dub of this episode was temporarily renamed "Spirits in the Sky" after the September 11th, 2001 attacks but I haven't seen any evidence (a screenshot of the updated title screen, for example) to support this claim. Are we sure this actually happened? Even if it is true I have to question the idea that renaming an episode "Dead People in the Sky" is somehow less 9/11-y than "A Scare in the Air." How is one better than the other...?

Dialogue Edit
Ash finishes shopping at the "convinience" store.

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
サトシ 「これだけあれば旅行中くいっぱぐれる心配はまずないな!」
Satoshi:  "That should just about do it. Now that we have all this we shouldn't have to worry about not having anything to eat during the trip." Ash:  "OK, we're all set. I'm pretty sure I got enough snacks and stuff to last us at least a couple of weeks."
カスミ 「ダイダイ島へ行くのに何日かかると思ってるの?」
Kasumi:  "Just how many days do you think it's going to take us to reach Daidai Island?" Misty:  "A couple of weeks? How long is it gonna take us to get to this place?"
サトシ 「一か月?それとも二か月ぐらい?」
Satoshi:  "One month? Maybe two?"
Ash:  "If we have to walk...I think about a month or so."

As you can see, Satoshi doesn't assume they'll be able to walk to an island the way Ash does.

Paint Edit
The sign outside the convenience store that says FUKUBIKI (Japanese for "lottery") in English letters gets painted out of existence. Three shots are edited altogether.


This edit is actually quite significant because it marks the last time 4Kids will use digital paint to erase Japanese text (well, a Japanese word) for the entire rest of the season. Their next digital paint edit won't be until a flashback scene to an older Kanto episode in "The Pokémon Water War" some 24 episodes from now! I wish I could say this large gap we're about to enjoy is because 4Kids lightened up on their "all Japanese writing must go" policy but that's unfortunately not the case; the truth is that Japanese writing just stopped showing up, even in the original version.

We don't really
know for sure how this change came to be. Did the Japanese production staff come up with this idea on its own in an effort to appeal to Western fans? I mean, Kenji replacing Takeshi was a Japan change (more on that in the next comparison) so it's entirely possible. Or did the change get made at the request (demand?) of 4Kids, the company who spent God knows how much time and money to erase Japanese text from the show over the last season and a half? We know 4Kids had a tight relationship with the Japanese production staff - the extra scenes in the movie Pokémon 4Ever and the new animation for their Johto League Champions openings are clear signs of this - so it's not entirely outside the realm of possibility for them to be like "hey, could you guys do us a favor...?"

Don't worry, English is safe.

Whatever the catalyst was, from this moment onward, with very few exceptions, Japanese writing is no longer allowed in the Pocket Monsters animated series.

Let's think about that a moment. The animators of this show are more or less banned from including their native language on signs or books or any other place an animated show would normally think to put text. Towns can still have signs as long as they're all in English, a language that, by the way, the show's animators do not know.  Buildings in the background will now say "HOTEL" or "SHOP" or whatever other simple words the animators can find in their Japanese-to-English dictionaries because Japanese writing is forbidden. Cameras are strategically placed behind signposts instead of over the characters' shoulders because Japanese writing is forbidden. Sound effects or other subtitles are no longer a part of the show because Japanese writing is forbidden.

This episode of Pocket Monsters (2019) takes place in a dojo located in Kanto, a region based on the Tokyo area of Japan. Japanese writing isn't allowed, even in this context, so the show uses illegible ink blobs instead.

Roman letters are still OK. Pictographs are OK. Made-up cypher languages are OK. Squiggles are OK (well, most of the time; sometimes the dub's art team mistakes those for Japanese writing and erase those too). But an actual language that can be read by the around 130 million Japanese speaking humans all over the world? Nope, get that shit out of here.

It'd be one thing if the show had been avoiding using Japanese writing from the get-go. If, from Season 01 Episode 01, the show was using "Tajirian" or whatever to show us that our heroes are on Not Earth™. But it didn't. For a full 80+ episodes - the most watched portion of the franchise, I should add -  the show told us that this is Japan and that these characters can read and write Japanese. Going back on that now is just really fucking gross.

Gross as it is, the English dub simply won't have as many paint edits from here on out. So...and I mean this in the most sarcastic way possible...yay...? Oh, but don't worry; 4Kids will still find plenty of things for their digital artists to work on during the rest of their time with the show.

Dialogue Edit
Our heroes find out about the above lottery:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
店員A 「おおっと!4等賞ー!」
Employee A:  "Oh! Prize number four!"
Employee A:  "...and we have another big winner!"
店員B 「おめでとうございます」
Employee B:  "Congratulations."
Employee B: "Congratulations, ma'am."
店員A 「4等賞はねむけざまし1個です!」 Employee A:  "And prize number four is...one Awakening spray!"
Employee A:  "Here's a set of beautiful refrigerator magnets."

The prize in the original version was an Awakening (ねむけざまし), as in the item from the games you can use to awaken a Pokémon that has fallen asleep.

Side Note
A quick little side note about the term used for the giant gas balloon our heroes ride to the Orange Islands. In English we have a lot of different words for "airship" that us laymen tend to use interchangeably - blimp, airship, zeppelin, dirigible - but the truth is that each term is actually quite different from one another. Zeppelins are airships that have rigid steel frames to hold their shape even when deflated, blimps do not and instead rely on the pressurized gases they house to keep their shape, dirigibles are kind of in between the two, etc.

In Japanese, just like in English, these all tend to get lumped into a single term, hikousen (飛行船). Different terms for different types of airships do exist - "semi-rigid airship" (半硬式飛行船), "thermal airship" (熱飛行船), "zeppelin" (ツェッペリン), etc - but most laymen just lump everything under hikousen and call it a day. This episode of Pocket Monsters, likewise, consistently uses the term hikousen throughout.

The 4Kids dub mostly uses the word "blimp," which from a translation point of view is perfectly fine (most dictionaries list "blimp" as a possible translation for hikousen) but the airship we see has a steel frame in it so it would probably have been more correct to call it a zeppelin instead. Oh well!

Dialogue Edit
Meowth returns a phone call to the Boss:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ニャース 「3-7-4-5…みんな良い子だロケット団」
Nyarth:  "3-7-4-5...and then the number given to the good boys and girls in the the Rocket-Dan"
Meowth:  "My name is Meow~th! I'm covered in fur. That's why I get hairballs..."

So what's happening in the Japanese version? Well, Nyarth is reciting the Boss' phone number out loud while using a bit of goroawase to obscure the second half. Japan doesn't have a special prefix reserved specifically for their TV / movies like we do in the U.S. and so whenever they do want to use a phone number in TV shows / movies they tend to only say a part of it to avoid accidentally giving out a real phone number.

So what's happening in the English version? Your guess is as good as mine. My guess is that 4Kids had no idea what the hell Nyarth was doing in the Japanese version so they just said "fuck it, let's just have him sing "On Top of Old Smokey" while his teammates look at him with serious expressions on their faces." *shrugs*

The Boss gives his orders:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
サ カキ 「ムサシ、コジロウ、ニャース。お前たちにロケットコンツェルンの飛行船部門への一時転属を命じる。」
Sakaki:  "Musashi, Kojirou, Nyarth. I'm ordering the three of you to a temporarily transfer to the Rocket Conglomerate's airship division. Giovanni:  "Meowth, Jessie, and James. Effective immediately the three of you are being transferred to Team Rocket's dirigible division."
ム サシ・コジロウ 「飛行船部門の?」
Musashi & Kojirou:  "The airship division!?" Jessie & James:  "The blimp brigade?"
ニャー ス 「ニャンと!」
Nyarth:  "What Nya!?" Meowth:  "Really!?"
サ カキ 「知ってのとおり、飛行船部門はロケットコンツェルンの花形部門…いい加減な人物には任せられない。」
Sakaki:  "As you're aware the airship division is the star of the Rocket Conglomerate. And I can't trust it with just anybody." Giovanni:  "The 'blimp brigade,' as you put it, serves a unique and important purpose in our organization. Only special operatives are chosen for this duty."
コ ジロウ 「ボス…」
Kojirou:  "Boss..." James:  "Oh Boss..."
ム サシ 「ボス私たちのことそんなにも」
Musashi:  "The Boss thinks that much of us..." Jessie:  "You have no idea how honored we are."
サ カキ 「お前たちの能力を見込んでの決定だ。期待しているぞ。」
Sakaki:  "This decision was made based on what we expect from your abilities. I'm counting on you." Giovanni:  "Remember, I'm counting on you. Don't let me down."

A few things worth pointing out here; one, Sakaki makes it clear that the trio's transfer to the airship division is only temporary (一時転属) while the English dub doesn't give us this same information.

Two, we hear Sakaki refer to the organization not as the Rocket-Dan but as the Rocket Konzern (ロケットコンツェルン). We're not given a lot to go off of from his dialogue here but the general consensus among Japanese fans is that the Rocket Konzern, whose name comes from a German loan-word that translates to "conglomerate," is the name Sakaki uses for his organization's legitimate business dealings. So as far as the general public knows, the "Rocket Conglomerate" is the name of the company that runs Pocke Mon Land, the Tokiwa City Pokémon Gym (maybe?), and, well, this line of airships. The "Rocket-Dan", meanwhile, is the similarly named mafia group that goes around stealing Pokémon, cutting off Yadon tails, etc. Numerous fan sites also cite Sakaki as being the CEO of the Rocket Conglomerate, though I have no idea where that bit of information comes from.

This Rocket Conglomerate / Rocket-Dan split seems to be a bit of lore that only exists in this one episode of this one animated series but fans in Japan really seem to have latched onto this extra bit of world building. And, well, it is kind of neat! It's just too bad the show never actually does anything with it moving forward.

Giovanni talks to his cat about the blimp brigade:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
サカキ 「実のところ飛行船部門はアクシデント続きで大赤字。客はより少なく なったので閉鎖しようと思っていたところに久々の仕事とはな。何があってもかまわない部下といえばアイツらしかいないからな…」
Sakaki:  "The truth is that the airship division has been in the red a lot because of a string of accidents. This job is the first we've had in a while; we'd lost so many customers I was just about to shut the whole thing down. I need henchmen who I don't care what happens to them and those three fit that description perfectly."
Giovanni:  "The only duty those three simpletons are fit for is the blunder brigade. I haven't had any repairs done to those old blimps for decades. They're completely unfit to fly. About the only thing I have maintained on those blimps are their insurance policies."

The only thing that's even remotely similar about the two is the through line of the Boss insulting his employees. Everything else is completely different!

I also wonder if the "string of accidents" line there is the TV show making a subtle nod to a similar string of airship accidents that more or less brought an end to the commercial airship flight industry in the real world. Do you think the crash of the British R38 in 1921, the US airship Roma in 1922, the French Dixmude in 1923, the British R101 in 1930, the USS Akron in 1933, and the LZ 129 Hindenburg in 1937 occurred in the Pocket Monsters world? Or am I reading too much into that line?

The airport staff try to stop our heroes:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
空港のスタッフ 「あの飛行船に乗るんですか?」
Airport Staff:  "Are you planning on taking that airship?"
Airship Staff:  "You're not here for a blimp ride, are you?"
サトシ 「福引で当たってダイダイ島まで行くんです。いいでしょう?」
Satoshi:  "I won a lottery and so we'll be going all the way to Daidai Island. Isn't that nice?"
Ash:  "Yes sir. We won round-trip tickets to Valencia Island...on the blimp."
空港のスタッフ 「す…すごい勇気だ」
Airport Staff:  "What...what incredible courage you have."
Airport Staff:  "Huh? You kids are brave."
空港のスタッフ 「とても真似できない…」
Airport Staff:  "No way I could do what you're doing."
Airport Staff:  "How much you gettin' paid?"
タケシ 「すごい…」
Takeshi:  "Incredible..."
Brock:  "Getting paid?"
サトシ 「勇気?」
Satoshi:  "...courage?"
Ash:  "What do you mean?"
カスミ 「あの飛行船に何かあるんですか…?」
Kasumi:  "Is there something wrong with that airship?"
Misty:  "Is there something about that blimp we ought to know?"

The big takeaway from this exchange is that 4Kids has Ash say that they won round-trip tickets when no such thing is even implied in the original.

The staff continues their warnings:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
空港のスタッフ 「じつは…あの飛行船…「フコウ船」と呼ばれているんです。魔 物が住んでいていろんな悪さをすると言われています。」
Airport Staff:  "Well actually...that airship...people refer to it as a miserable dirigible. They say monsters live onboard and cause all sorts of trouble."
Airport Staff:  "Look, huh? That blimp's so dangerous everybody says it's haunted by a gang of ghosts. I wouldn't fly on that thing if you paid me a million bucks."
ムサシ・コジロウ 「アテンションプリーズ!」
Musashi & Kojirou:  "Attention please!"
Jessie & James:  "Attention please!"
コジロウ 「お待たせしました、お客様!」
Kojirou:  "We're sorry to keep you waiting."
James:  "Please have your tickets ready."
ムサシ 「私たちがご案内致します!」
Musashi:  "We'll be your guides on your voyage today."
Jessie:  "Passengers may now begin boarding."
サトシ 「あの…今の話はホント?」
Satoshi:  "Um...was what those guys were saying true?"
Ash:  "Uh...but what about the ghosts?"
コジロウ 「何でしょう?」
Kojirou:  "Is what true?"
James:  "What ghosts, sir?"
カスミ 「飛行船はフコウ船で魔物が住んでるって」
Kasumi:  "That this is a miserable dirigible and that monsters live here."
Misty:  "Those guys told us a bunch of ghosts lived in there."
コジロウ 「そんなことある訳ないじゃないですか…」
Kojirou:  "Oh come, come now. Of course nothing like that is true."
James:  "Oh, they must have been from a rival blimp line."

Lots of little changes here and there but the one I want to highlight here is the part where the airport staff refers the title of this episode "The Miserable Dirigible!?" The nickname they give the airship in the original is fukousen (フコウ船), which is just the word for airship, hikousen, with the hi swapped out with a fu. This changes the word to fukou-sen (不幸船), a made-up word that you could translate as "disaster ship" or something like that.

Given how much 4Kids loves hokey little puns like this I'm actually kind of surprised they didn't jump at the chance to call it a "badyear blimp" or something like that.

As our heroes board the blimp:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ニャース 「やっと巡ってきたやりがいのある仕事の最初の客がアイツらニャん て。本当に運が燃えきたニャー」
Nyarth:  "Not only do we finally get assigned such an important job but our first customers just happen to be those three Nya! Our luck really is on fire Nya!"
Meowth:  "The Boss must have put us on this detail 'cause he knew those kids was coming out here to take a blimp ride. Heh! We'll really take them for a ride."

As you can see Meowth apparently thinks the Boss gives two shits about this trio of children in the English version. Not so in the Japanese version!

Our heroes sit down for their in-flight meal:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
タケシ 「このスープぬるいぞ」
Takeshi:  "This soup's kind of cold."
Brock:  "Ugh...this soup is ice cold."
コジロウ 「うちのシェフが猫舌なもので…」
Kojirou:  "Well our chef does have a cat's tongue after all..."
James:  "I...it's an old Eskimo recipe."
タケシ 「猫舌?」
Takeshi:  "Cat's tongue?"
Brock:  "Eskimo?"
コジロウ 「猫舌のポケ…」
Kojirou:  "It's because he's a cat Poké..." (Musashi hits him)
James:  "Yes, our chef Me--Ow!" (Jessie hits him)

In Japanese if you say that someone has a cat's tongue (猫舌) then that means they're someone who doesn't like to eat hot foods. Maybe they let their ramen sit there and cool off a bit before taking their first bite, or they only ever order ice coffee...things like that. The joke here is that since Nyarth is the chef then he literally does have a cat's tongue.

We don't have that same saying in English so 4Kids added a real-world reference to an outdated term for Native Alaskans instead.

The Rocket trio realize the ship's gonna crash:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ニャース 「あれを押せばゆっくりガスが抜けて安全に不時着できるニャ」
Nyarth:  "If we press that then the gas will be let out slowly and we'll be able to safely make an emergency landing." Meowth:  "When you push that button all the gas gets let outta the blimp and we land in the ocean."
ムサシ 「ちょっと待ったよ。飛行船を不時着させたらボスの期待を裏切ることに なるわ。」
Musashi:  "Wait just a second there. If we have to make an emergency landing then we'll be letting the Boss down." Jessie:  "We can't do that. The Boss is counting on us and if we fail, we're out of the blimp brigade for good!"
コジロウ 「やっとつかんだチャンスなのに。失敗したら今度こそクビだよ!」
Kojirou:  "And just when we were given such a great opportunity...if we fail then we'll be fired this time for sure!" James:  "We can't mess this mission up! They'll take back my blimp brigade uniform!"
ムサシ 「そうなったときのためにごきげんを伺いピカチュウゲットしなくちゃ」
Musashi:  "In times like these we should just suck up to him by getting Pikachu." Jessie:  "As long as we capture Pikachu the Boss won't care if we sink the stupid blimp or not."
コジロウ 「なるほど!おぼれるものはピカチュウをもつかむ!」
Kojirou:  "Oh, I see! Since we're drowning out here we can just grab onto Pikachu to stay afloat." James:  "You're right, Jessie, and then we'll be heroes."
ムサシ 「あたし頭いい!これは完璧な作戦よ~!」
Musashi:  "I'm so smart! This is a perfect pla~an!" Jessie:  "All we need is Pikachu, doo dah, doo dah~ All we need is Pikachu, Pikachu, hooray!"
ムサシ・コジ ロウ 「いい感じー!」
Musashi & Kojirou:  "This feels great!"
ニャース 「前向きニャのか後ろ向きニャのかわからなさそうだニャ」
Nyarth:  "I can't tell if they're looking ahead or if they're just stuck in the past Nya." Meowth:  "These two are acting screwier than usual. Maybe the blimp gas is gettin' to them."

There are tons of little differences here, but the one that's the most baffling to me is how the dub has Jessie sing "Camptown Races" for absolutely no reason at all.

God bless the Japanese version and its eyecatches, amirite?

Japanese Eyecatch
Japanese Eyecatch

The eyecatch this time around is a daruma doll, the little red doll Kasumi momentarily mistakes for her Togepy. You can read more about the doll on the page I just linked to but, long story short, it's a trinket people have in their houses to motivate them to accomplish a task. The Pokémon Darumakka, which came out years and years after this episode first aired, is based on this same type of doll.


The English version just uses Vulpix for its eyecatch Pokémon, which is completely random and has nothing to do with anything. It's not nearly as fun, is it?

Dialogue Edit
Team Rocket looks for our heroes:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
コジロウ 「あいつらどこ行ったんだ?」
Kojirou:  "Where did those kids go?" James:  "There's no place left to look, Jess."
ムサシ 「まったく勝手に歩き回るんじゃないわよ!」
Musashi:  "I bet they're just walking around on their own." Jessie:  "I know, James. It's like those kids just vanished into thin air."
ニャース 「ひょうっとしてこっそり降りたとかニャ?」
Nyarth:  "Or maybe they snuck off the airship or something Nya?"
Meowth:  "Maybe they're invisible like all the ghosts in here."
ムサシ 「パラシュートもなしでどーやって降りんのよ!いつも何でも分かったな 顔しちゃって」
Musashi:  "And how do you think they did that without a parachute, huh!? I've just about had it with that know-it-all face of yours!"
Jessie:  "I've had just about enough of your big Pokémouth, mister! If you wanna be invisible, just tell me! Well, do you!?"
ニャース 「痛い~やめるニャ!」
Nyarth:  "Ow...cut it out...!" Meowth:  "Knock it off! Quit it! Cut it out! I was kidding!"

To be honest neither one of these make any sense to me. Musashi's upset because Nyarth suggested something implausible while Jessie's upset because Meowth's apparently making fun of them for believing in ghosts? Both seem like an overreaction to me *shrugs*

Ash and his friends see a ghost:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
サ トシ 「こんな船早く降りろよ!先のは絶対にフコウ船に住む魔物だよ!」
Satoshi:  "Let's hurry up and get off this ship. That thing we just saw back there must have been the monster of the miserable dirigible!" Ash:  "This whole blimp must be full of ghosts. I think we should try to get off this thing 'cause you guys look really scared."
タ ケシ 「降りると言ったって、どうやって?」
Takeshi:  "That's easier said than done." Brock:  "We can't get off. We're a mile high!"
カ スミ 「降りる降りないの前にトゲピーを探すのよ!なんだかんだと言ってる場合じゃないでしょう?」
Kasumi:  "And besides, whether we get off or not the first thing we've gotta do is look for Togepy! This isn't the time to be talking about this or that." Misty:  "And even if we could, I'm not leaving here without Togepi. I'll battle ghosts or anybody else I have to."
ム サシ 「あぁ!やった!なんだかんだと聞かれたら」
Musashi:  "Ugh, finally! If we're told about this or that..." Jessie:  "That's our cue! Prepare for trouble!"
コ ジロウ 「答えてあげるが世の情け」
Kojirou:  "It's up to the world whether or not we answer!" James:  "Make it double!"

Aside from the dub making Ash a bit more dickish than his Japanese counterpart the big thing about this dialogue is how Kasumi sets up the Rocket-Dan to say their motto by (inadvertently) saying Musashi's first line (the "this or that" part). The English dub could have easily adapted this decided not to for whatever reason.

Music Edit
Speaking of things 4Kids did for whatever reason, they replaced the Team Rocket motto music! They keep the little bit that plays during the above exchange but then replace it when it starts up again after they fall off the ladder.

Rocket trio's motto

The Team Rocket motto theme has been one of those pieces of music that 4Kids had always left alone so to see it get replaced here is very surprising. Just...why?

Dialogue Edit
After our heroes stop the battle to rescue Togepi:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ムサシ・コジロウ 「ロケット団のロの字はロマンのロ…」
Musashi & Kojirou:  "The "ro" in "Roketto-Dan" stands for "romanticism"."
Team Rocket:  "Looks like Team Rocket's messing up again."
ニャース 「イジけてる場合じゃニャー!」
Nyarth:  "This isn't the time to be messing around!"
Meowth:  "We can't let 'em get away!"

Does the Rocket duo's Japanese dialogue look familiar? "The "ro" in "Roketto-Dan" stands for "romanticism"" (ロケッ ト団のロの字はロマンのロ), a line that would become popular among Japanese fans of the trio for years to come as it gets repeated in a few more episodes before finally making its way into a Rocket-Dan Danka a full sixteen years later. In the context of this episode it seems to be a little chant they're making up to cheer themselves up after being ignored by Satoshi and the others.

Megumi Hayashibara, the voice actress who plays Musashi, indicates that this little song was actually something they just kind of did as an inside joke on a blog entry she posted around the time Rocket-Dan Danka came out:

When we were sitting out in the lobby waiting for our turn or whatever we'd often sing "The "ro" in "Roketto-Dan" stands for "romanticism"" as a sort of joke among the three of us. But now it's become a full-fledged song!

I guess 4Kids didn't know what to do with this so they had them do a play on their blasting off motto instead.

Finally, our heroes crash land on Valencia Island:


The final change in the episode occurs with the airport announcer, who's changed from a woman in the Japanese version into a man in the English dub. This isn't the first time the dub's done this and it won't be the last, for some reason!

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This page was last updated on September 5th, 2020




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