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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Orange Islands

Japanese Episode 084

Episode Stats:

Japanese Episode 084:  "Go Help Laplace!"
American Episode 230:  "The Lost Lapras"
Pokemon Dare Da?  Laplace (Japanese), Ninetales (English)
Japanese Air Date:  February 18th, 1999
American Air Date:  January 22nd, 2000
Important Characters:  Kenji (Tracey), Southern Cross (Orange Crew)
Important Places:  Bontan Island (Tangelo Island), Natsukan Island (Mikan Island)

Somehow, Satoshi and Kasumi’s blimp lands safely on an island called Bontan Island! The two pick themselves up from the wreckage and begin to walk around a bit until they see a Laplace being assaulted by a trio of delinquents on a beach. Satoshi is about to attack the bullies to get them to stop when a Pokémon Watcher named Kenji walks by and notices how weak the Laplace is. Pikachu uses Thunderbolt to quickly take care of the delinquents so that Satoshi and the others can go ahead and take Laplace to a nearby Pokémon Center. As our heroes wait for Water-Type to recover Satoshi and his friends find out that the Orange Islands has its very own Pokémon League, with Gym Leaders and badges and everything! Satoshi calls Dr. Ookido and gets permission to take a slight detour on his GS Ball delivery to go compete in the Orange League. Kenji, meanwhile, sees this as a rare chance to meet his idol Dr. Ookido and declares that he will join Satoshi and Kasumi on their journey until they get back to Masara Town. Later that day, the Rocket-Dan appears and kidnaps Laplace from the Pokémon Center. After a fast-paced truck chase, Satoshi manages to free the Laplace and eventually gain its trust. Now that Laplace is safe and sound it decides to go with Satoshi, Kasumi, and Kenji around the Orange Islands. Their first destination is the Natsukan Gym, the site of the first Orange League Pokémon Gym.

Whenever I pick an image to represent an episode at the top of the comparisons here I either 1) lazily just copy whatever image TV-Tokyo used at the time or, more recently, 2) pick an image from the episode that I feel best covers everything that happened. For the previous episode, for example, I chose that shot of Dr. Uchikido handing the GS Ball over to Satoshi since, well, that's the most important event of the episode. The one before that, I chose our heroes' airship heading into a storm, since that's what the majority of the second half of the episode is all about. And for Episode 081 I chose a shot of Satoshi riding on his newly evolved Pigeot as it attacks an Onidrill because, well, that's the entire episode in a nutshell, is it not?

But how do you pick a single image to sum up "Go Help Laplace!"? I mean, look at what all happens in this half hour of television:

  • Satoshi and Kasumi meet, befriend, and eventually decide to travel with a Pokémon Watcher named Kenji.
  • Satoshi learns about the Orange League and decides to compete.
  • Satoshi gets a Laplace.
An entire episode could be made about any one of those three plots but this show decided to stuff all three of them into a single episode. So what gets the top billing, in my eye?

We meet Kenji in this episode, and while he is a major part of this episode I'd argue that his impact on the series as a whole (and this episode in particular) is pretty minimum. He doesn't really affect much at the end of the day, does he? I'll go more into my thoughts about Kenji later, but is the kid who just shows up out of nowhere, with zero backstory, who then just up and decides to join our heroes on an island-hopping adventure, the most important part of the episode? I don't really think so.

The Orange League and the Southern Cross (more on that later) are also introduced in "Go Help Laplace!" This one's a bit more important because -- and spoiler alert for an episode that came out more than 20 years ago -- Satoshi ends up actually winning this whole thing this time around. But the fact that the league exists and a vague description of what it is, while important, isn't something that I feel really stands out about this episode in particular.

Satoshi getting Laplace is what I eventually chose to represent this episode. That's because everything that happens in it, from our heroes meeting Kenji to them finding out about the Orange League, only happens because this Laplace got the crap beaten out of it by a bunch of hoodlums on a beach. Plus, without Laplace our heroes have no way of doing all the island hopping they'll be doing the next half a year or so. The "Satoshi gets a Pokémon by befriending it" thing is something that's become a sort of trope at this point (Kasumi even pokes fun at this at the end of the episode) but the way it's presented here doesn't make it feel too derivative of the other times it's been done before.

The English dub casts Ted Lewis as Tracey and it's alright, I guess. After playing villains up until this point (James for the early part of Season 1 and Giovanni in every episode up until now) it's kind of nice he gets a chance to play a good guy for a change. Script-wise, this episode's weird in that the first half is basically just one rewrite after the other while the second half is comparatively much more faithful. Perhaps two writers worked on this episode, with the one who worked on the first half taking a more laissez-faire approach to script writing and the one who worked on the second half being a bit more faithful? Unfortunately the show's credits don't bother to tell us who wrote any given episode and so all we can do is blindly speculate.

Ash's Lapras keeps its Japanese voice which is great because we'll be seeing a lot of it in the next 30 episodes or so.

Dialogue Edit
Rodger Parsons, who I hope is getting paid by the word here, delivers the opening narration:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ナレーション 「…」
(no dialogue)
Narrator:  "Last time, our heroes arrived on..."
ナレーション 「オーキド博士のお使いで、オレンジ諸島ダイダイ島にやってきた サトシたち」
Narrator:  "Satoshi and his friends have come to Daidai Island on the Orange Archipelago on an errand for Dr. Ookido."
Narrator:  "...Valencia Island to pick up a mysterious Pokéball for their friend Professor Oak."
ナレーション 「…」
(no dialogue) Narrator:  "After getting the GS Ball from..."
ナレーション 「ウチキド博士からGSボールを受け取り、飛行船でマサラタウン に帰るだけのはずが」
Narration:  "After getting the GS Ball from Dr. Uchikido, it was supposed to be a simple matter to return to Masara Town by airship."
Narrator:  "...Professor Ivy, Brock decided to stay and work at her lab so Ash and Misty headed home by blimp."
ナレーション 「…」
(no dialogue) Narrator:  "As usual, our duo was double-crossed
ナレーション 「待ち構えていたロケット団の罠にハマり」
Narrator:  "But our heroes got caught in a trap waiting for them by the Rocket-Dan."
Narrator:  "... by Team Rocket. And as usual,
ナレーション 「…」
(no dialogue) Narrator:  "...their triumph turned to tragedy when Jigglypuff decided to provide some in-flight entertainment."
ナレーション 「乱入してきたプリンの歌に眠らされてしまった」
Narrator:  "They were then put to sleep by the song of Purin, who had stowed aboard."
Narrator:  "While Ash and company have drifted off to sleep, their blimp has..."
ナレーション 「…」
(no dialogue) Narrator:  "...drifted seriously off-course. Now they're headed for a rude awakening. The big question is, will they land in..."
ナレーション 「サトシたちを乗せた飛行船は大空を漂い。そして…」
Narrator:  "The airship that Satoshi and the others is on is now drifting about aimlessly through the sky. And then..."
Narrator:  "...a tropical dream? Or on nightmare island?"

So right off the bat we get this change, where the English version narration is soooooooooo much wordier than its Japanese counterpart. There are certain 4Kids writers who seem afraid to let a single second go without having somebody saying something and so they create a bunch of filler dialogue to make sure a single second doesn't go by without someone rambling on about something.

Ash and Misty wonder where all the people are:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
カスミ 「ひょっとして、無人島じゃない?」
Kasumi:  "What if...what if this is a deserted island?"
Misty:  "Hey, maybe this is a deserted island."
サトシ 「無人島?」
Satoshi:  "A deserted island?"
Ash:  "Deserted?"
ピカチュウ 「ピカ?」
Pikachu:  "Pika?"
Pikachu:  "Pika?"
カスミ 「だとしたら、あたしたちこのまま誰にも見つからずに」
Kasumi:  "If that's the case then we'll be stuck here forever and no one will ever find us!"
Misty:  "We're trapped! Now we'll have to eat bugs and berries for the rest of our lives!"
サトシ 「な、何バカなこと言ってんだよ~!」
Satoshi:  "What? Come on, don't be ridiculous!"
Ash:  "Wah! Well, berries can be very tasty."

4Kids brings in Misty's fear of real world animals, something that isn't brought up in the Japanese version.

The English dub gives Ash a callback to the whole "eating bugs" thing later in the episode; that time, the Japanese dialogue is "You see? It wasn't a deserted island after all" (よかったな、無人島じゃなくてさ).

Tangelo Island tourists gather around Ash:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
おじいさん A 「おー!ピカチュウがおるぞ!」
Old Man A:  "Oh! They've got a Pikachu!"
Old Man:  "Look, a Pikachu!"
おじいさん B 「こっちのは何じゃ?」
Old Man B:  "And what's this over here?"
Woman:  "Are we allowed to feed them?"
おばあさん 「早く早く記念撮影よ!」
Old Woman:  "Hurry hurry, get a picture!"
Man:  "Isn't that a Togepi? Get a picture with us."
おじいさん C 「やった」
Old Man C:  "That'll be a good one!"
Woman:  "Smile for the camera!"

Usually the dialogue in crowd scenes like this is pretty much just throwaway fluff but in this case the dub brings up something interesting that the Japanese version doesn't; is the existence of Togepy supposed to be common knowledge at this point? I mean, if random tourist dude in a pre-Johto region is able to identify a Togepi within seconds then that must mean it's supposed to be common enough for people to know about by now, right?

Side Note

So when our heroes are brought to a theme park and there's this big sign that says "Pokemon Park," one would reasonably expect that this is what it's called, right?

Well this isn't the case in the Japanese version! While the sign that says "Pokemon Park" is indeed there in the Japanese version as well (no 4Kids digital paint here!), both the hulu girls and the announcer on the PA refer to the park as Yasei Pokemon no Mori (野生ポケモンの森), or "Wild Pokemon Forest." I'm not sure why there's this weird disconnect between what the sign says and what the dialogue states but the dub decided to change it so that everything's more consistent.

Dialogue Edit
The PA announcement welcomes us to Tangelo Island:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
アナウンサー 「皆様、ボンタン島へようこそ!ボンタン島では、ただいまテーマ パーク「野生ポケモンの森」を開催しております」
Announcer:  "Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Bontan Island. Bontan Island is home to the theme park "Wild Pokémon Forest.""
Announcer:  "The Tangelo Island Chamber of Commerce welcomes one and all to the home of Pokémon Park, the world's first Pokémon theme park."

First and foremost, the dub gives us another gender swap! For the second time in two episodes, a female announcer's voice in the Japanese version is changed to a male announcer's voice for the English dub.

Secondly, "the world's first Pokémon theme park?" Um...

Episode 017, "The Island of Giant Pokémon!?"

Ash and Misty confront the delinquents:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
不良 A 「何だってテメェら!」
Pompadour delinquent:  "And who the heck are you?"
Pompadour delinquent:  "Who asked your opinion?"
不良 B 「オレたちに因縁つける気か?」
Bandana delinquent:  "You looking ta pick a fight with us?"
Bandana delinquent:  "Yeah. This is none of your business."
不良 C 「オレたちはな、こう見えてもただの不良じゃねぇんだぞ」
Green-haired delinquent:  "We may not look like it but we're not just some ordinary run-of-the-mill delinquents." Green-haired delinquent:  "We don't need any little brats like you telling us how to handle our Pokémon!"
不良 B 「そうとも!サザンクロスに挑戦する実力派の不良なんだ」
Bandana delinquent:  "That's right! We're delinquents who actually have what it takes to go up against the Southern Cross!" Bandana delinquent:  "Yeah, we're getting ready for our big Pokémon battle against the Orange Crew, so get lost!"
カスミ 「やっぱり不良なんじゃな」
Kasumi:  "Oh, so you're delinquents either way then?"
Misty:  "I can't believe you three are Pokémon Trainers!"
サトシ 「サザンクロス?」
Satoshi:  "The Southern Cross?"
Ash:  "The Orange Crew?"

The green-haired delinquent implies that Lapras is their Pokémon when no such claim is made in the original. The English dub also glosses over the perfectly translatable "we're not your average delinquents" joke, for some reason.

Also, "our big Pokémon battle (singular) against the Orange Crew" sure doesn't really make sense with what we'll eventually come to find out about the group, now does it?

Side Note
Let's talk about Kenji.

So as I alluded to in the previous comparison, Takeshi was given the boot because the staff behind the show thought Americans wouldn't accept a show where one of the main characters looks so Asian-y the way Takeshi does. So, they replaced him with a kid with larger eyes.

This character model sheet -- taken from The Memorial Book of Orange Islands -- is dated August 27th, 1998. That's about a little over a week before the Pokémon anime would even make its North American debut, meaning the show's producers weren't even going to wait for the show to come out in the U.S. to get fans' feedback. They had already decided that Westerners weren't going to like Satoshi's friend with the almond-shaped eyes and so Kenji was brought in.

I personally think Kenji, as a character, is perfectly fine. He likes drawing and ordering random Trainers to just sit there and listen to his critiques on their Pokémon? And he idolizes Dr. Ookido? Um, alright, that's fine. Honestly, the most interesting thing about the character to me is the fact he's voiced by Tomokazu Seki (関智一), the actor who provides the voices of characters like Toji Suzuhara in Neon Genesis Evangelion, Touya Kinomoto in Card Captor Sakura, Van Fanel in The Vision of Escaflowne, and who would go on to voice characters like Rob Lucci in One Piece and Whisper in Yokai Watch.

At the same time, I do kind of really hate what it is that Kenji represents. Because when I look at this dorky little sketch artist, I see Japan trying really hard to change itself for somebody else. I see the negative effects of the show becoming so mainstream, especially abroad. I see an animation company going from making a really great piece of Japanese animation to a vanilla product that's constantly in a state of fear, always worrying that what they're doing at any moment is "too Japanese."

People absolutely hate it whenever I use the word "whitewash" to describe what happened to this show once it became an international success but it's honestly not a bad way to summarize what happened during the Orange Islands arc. The animators' native language is forbidden from appearing in the show, and the one person in the cast with "Asian-y eyes" gets replaced with a character that makes it easier for Americans to project their  whiteness upon. Episodes about Japan-only holidays will no longer be produced, and Japanese food will all but disappear from the show altogether. Violence against Pokémon will be toned down (notice how, for example, the delinquents beating up Lapras all happened off-screen?), and violence against humans will all but disappear as well.
Do you like to see the Rocket trio cross dressing? Sorry, but in a few years that'll be gone too thanks to complaints from the West.

I like Kenji and the Orange Islands and the overall story of this arc but I also hate it, on principle, for representing all the changes I see it bringing about. The show will continue to thrive for decades to come, of course, but I can't help but wonder how things would have turned out if the show didn't take the weird turn it's taking with this arc.

Dialogue Edit
Kenji has a catch phrase in the Japanese version, kansatsu sasete itadakimasu (観察させてもらいます), or "let me get a closer look!" He basically says it every single time he starts observing some Pokémon and/or or takes out his sketchbook. It's like Dawn's "No need to worry!" or Cilan's "It's ___ time!" and shows up just as often.

4Kids doesn't seem to like translating traveling companions' catchphrases for some reason (Haruka's kamo won't get localized either, for example) and so they just kind of ignore it. The phrase will get a fresh translation each and every time it's used; in this episode alone we get "This should only take a second," "I just want to make a quick sketch," "Wow, a Jigglypuff! I have to sketch this," "A Meowth that can talk human language! Haah!" and "And I'll be with him to help out, too."

Tracy makes some guesses about Lapras:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ジョーイ 「ただ、あのラプラスとっても臆病になってるようなの」
Joy:  "But, that Laplace has become easily frightened."
Nurse Joy:  "That Lapras is afraid to have any kind of contact with people at all."
カスミ 「無理もないわね。だってあんなヒドい目にあったんだもん」
Kasumi:  "It makes sense, after all the terrible things it just went through."
Misty:  "No wonder, after the way those guys on the beach were treating it."
ケンジ 「それに何といってもまだ子供だからな…」
Kenji:  "On top of that, it's obvious that Laplace is still just a child."
Tracey:  "That's too bad, especially 'cause it's just an infant."
サトシ 「え!?あいつ子供なの!?」
Satoshi:  "Eh!? That's a child!?"
Ash:  "Huh? That's a baby Lapras?"

So how old is Satoshi's Laplace? Well, according to the Japanese version it's still a kodomo, a word that can include babies and infants but can also include children much older than that. Laplace could be six years old and still be a kodomo, probably. The English dub, meanwhile, has decided that Ash's Lapras was definitely only just born.

And how did that Lapras come to be on the island, anyway?

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ケンジ 「この島の沖合には、時々ラプラスの群れがやってくるんだ。あいつはた ぶんその一匹さ。その間の嵐ではぐれたんだよ」
Kenji:  "Sometimes schools of Laplace come to the shore of this island. This Laplace is maybe one of them. It must have gotten separated from the group during that last big storm we had."
Tracey:  "Big schools of Lapras pass by the island this time every year. This one must've gotten separated from its group, maybe during that last big storm we had."

"Pass by this island every year" is a random 4Kids rewrite.

Speaking of random 4Kids rewrites, here's Nurse Joy explaining what Pokémon Watchers are!

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ジョーイ 「ポケモンウォッチャーっていうのはフィールドワークを中心に様々な ポケモンを調査しながら旅をする人のことよ」
Joy:  "Pokémon Watchers are people who study various Pokémon, mainly through fieldwork, as they travel around."
Nurse Joy:  "Pokémon Watchers travel the world. They go looking for all kinds of Pokémon so they can observe and study their characteristics and abilities. They even search for new, undiscovered Pokémon."

The dub states that Pok
émon Watchers "travel the world" but that's not in the Japanese script. Joy simply states that Pokémon Watchers "travel around," without the "the world" part. She also doesn't say anything about Pokémon Watchers searching for undiscovered Pokémon, for what that's worth.

Team Rocket's up to something:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ニャース 「ラプラスとは珍しいニャ」
Nyarth:  "Laplace are rare Nya"
Meowth:  "Our losin' streak's about to end."
コジロウ 「珍しいポケモンはみんなのもの。みんなのものは当然、俺たちのも の」
Kojirou:  "Rare Pokémon belong to everyone. And those that belong to everyone naturally belong to us."
James:  "I think our luck must finally be turning. We're so close to grabbing a really rare Pokémon!"
ムサシ 「よ~し!早速作戦開始よ」
Musashi:  "Alright then, let's get to work!"
Jessie:  "Success is just one step away."

Ugh, this is going to be one of those "everything Team Rocket says is a 4Kids rewrite" type of episodes, isn't it?

Side Note
Let's talk about the "Orange Crew" for a moment because the way 4Kids handles the naming of the group kind of messes up a bunch of the lore the Japanese version had set up for this arc.

First thing's first: Tracey's explanation of the "Orange Crew" -- you have to beat all the Gym Leaders to compete in the Orange League -- is all translated accurately. So no worries there.

But then there's the name of the group. The quartet of Gym Leaders that the English dub refers to as "the Orange Crew" is known as the "Southern Cross" (サザンクロス) in the Japanese version. This name presumably comes from the real world Southern Cross, a constellation visible from the southern hemisphere that's used more or less the same way the North Star is for those of us north of the equator. The constellation is featured on a number of countries' national flags (Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, etc.) and has been referenced in songs and literature repeatedly over the last few centuries or so.


The Orange Islands are a "southern" country (a tidbit the dub keeps avoiding, for some reason) and there are the same number of Gym Leaders as there are points on the cross and so referring to the group as the "Southern Cross" makes sense.

But it goes even further than that. Let's take a close look at the Orange League poster:

Southern Cross

So, just to get this out of the way -- 4Kids did not put a drop of digital paint on this poster. The episode features a poster with the words ORANGE LEAGUE written out in English, even in Japan.
There's a large golden colored cross in the middle (again, no digital paint here!) while the league's four badges shoot off in four directions.

Now let's talk about the Orange League's four Gym Leaders. In the Japanese version, each Gym Leader introduces themselves as "the ____ star of the Southern Cross," with ____ being one of the four cardinal directions. The 4Kids dub decides to completely rewrite each and every introductions so all of this is probably new information for those of you who have to rely on the dub. Those directions, as you'll see below, all correspond to their badges' positions on the poster.

From Episode 085, "The Orange League! Natsukan Gym!"


From Episode 093, "Navel Gym! The Battle of the Snowy Mountain!"

Shiranami Badge

From Episode 103, "Yuzu Gym! A Three on Three Type Battle!"

Rinbou Badge

From Episode 108, "Tag Battle! The Final Gym!"

Ruri Badge

Again, the English dub rewrites every single one of these introductions to remove any references to the Gym Leaders' positions on the Southern Cross.

I don't know why 4Kids made a change like this. The reason that instantly pops into my brain is the idea that evangelical Christian parents would be upset by a kids' show using the word "cross" a bunch of times, but then we've seen crosses before ("The Ghost of Maiden's Peak") and we'll see them again later on ("Wherefore Art Thou, Pokémon?") so I don't think that's it...?

No one's being crucified here like they sorta-kinda were at the end of XY&Z, either; it's literally just the show saying the name of a constellation that all our friends on the southern end of our planet would recognize.

At the end of the day the name change is not that a big deal, I guess, but it is a shame that the English dub removes this interesting little piece of lore for seemingly no reason whatsoever.

Dialogue Edit
Our heroes contact Professor Oak:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
オーキド博士 「おー、サトシ!無事じゃったか!心配したぞ。ウチキド博士に連 絡したらなんとタケシが出て、飛行船で出発したというし。一体どうしたんじゃ?」
Dr. Ookido:  "Ah, Satoshi! You're safe! I was getting worried, y'know. I called Dr. Uchikido's and, to my surprise, Takeshi picked up the phone and told me about how you two had left on an airship and all that. What in the world's going on?"
Professor Oak:  "Hi Ash. Hello, Misty. Glad to see you're both okay. I was getting worried about you two. Professor Ivy told me you and Misty had left on a blimp. I hope you didn't run into any trouble."

As you can see, Takeshi doesn't get a shout-out in the English dub at all.

Tracey is starstruck:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ケンジ 「すごーい!キミたち、あのオーキド博士と知り合いだったの?」
Kenji:  "Amazing! You two actually know the Dr. Ookido?" Tracey:  "Wow! I can't believe I know two people who know my hero Professor Oak!"
サトシ 「あ。同じ町に住んでるからね」
Satoshi:  "Yeah...we both live in the same town, you see." Ash:  "What's the big deal about knowing Professor Oak?"
ピカチュウ 「ピカピカ?」
Pikachu:  "Pika Pika?" Pikachu:  "Pika Pika?"
カスミ 「何感動してるの?」
Kasumi:  "What are you getting so excited about?" Misty:  "Yeah, he's a real nice guy, but-"
ケンジ 「僕たちポケモンウォッチャーにとってオーキド博士は憧れの人なんだ よ!」
Kenji:  "All of us Pokemon Watchers absolutely idolize Dr. Ookido!"
Tracey:  "Every Watcher knows Professor Oak is one of the greatest Pokémon experts on the whole entire planet!"

Here, Satoshi reveals that he lives in the same town as Dr. Ookido, something that Ash doesn't bother telling Tracey. Kenji's final line here got rewritten as well to make Professor Oak one of the greatest experts in the world instead of just popular among a certain group of Trainers.

Tracey decides to travel with our heroes:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ケンジ 「オーキド博士に会って、今まで集めた資料を見てもらうんだ」
Kenji:  "I'll meet Dr. Ookido and get him to look at all the documents I've gathered."
Tracey:  "See, if I stick with you, I'll finally get the chance to meet my hero Professor Oak!"
The whole "get him to look at all the documents I've gathered" thing nicely foreshadows what Kenji will actually get to do about 30 episodes from now so it's kind of a shame the English dub decides to gloss over this tidbit here.

The eyecatch differences continue:


The dub already used Lapras last week so I guess instead of using a Pokémon we'll see next week (Seadra? Blastoise?) they decided to go with a random Fire-Type we'll only see in the background nineteen weeks from now. Makes perfect sense!

Dialogue Edit
We actually go a few scenes without any real rewrites, believe it or not! There's some horribly unfitting replacement music during the scene of Satoshi swimming around in the pool, so that sucks, but script-wise the second half of the episode is surprisingly decent.

The next noteworthy dialogue change occurs after Team Rocket's motto:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ケンジ 「あっあ。 ただいまマイクのテスト中。本日は晴天なり、本日は晴天なり」
Kenji:  "Ah ah ah ah, mic check, mic check. "It's fine today, it's fine today.""
Tracey:  "Testing, one two three. Meowth, can you please say something for the Pokémon Watcher archive?"
ニャース 「ニャアニャニャ?」
Nyarth:  "Nya...what nya?" Meowth:  "Uh, what should I say?"
ケンジ 「ほら、しゃべってしゃべって」
Kenji:  "Come on~, say something say something!" Tracey:  "Maybe you can answer a few questions!"
ニャース 「あん?インタビューはマネージャーを通してからにして欲しいニャ」
Nyarth:  "Huh? I usually like to run interviews through my ma-nya-ger first..." Meowth:  "Well, I usually don't do interviews unless they've been cleared through my talent agent."
ムサシ 「誰にマネージャーが要るというのかな?」
Musashi:  "Now who in the world are you saying needs a manager, hmm?" Jessie:  "Keep it up and you're gonna need a travel agent!"
コジロウ 「何やってんだオマエ?」
Kojirou:  "What in the world are you doing?" James:  "Can't you see we're busy?"
ムサシ 「そうよ。あんた誰?」
Musashi:  "That's right. Who the heck are you?" Jessie:  "Who are you, anyway?"
ケンジ 「僕?僕はポケモンウォッチャーのケンジ!」
Kenji:  "Who me? I'm Kenji and I'm a Pokemon Watcher." Tracey:  "Oh, sorry. My name's Tracey. I'm a Pokémon Watcher."
ムサシ 「ウォッチャーだかウーロン茶だか知らないけどこのラプラスをいただい ていくわよ」
Musashi:  "I don't know what a Watcher or pitcher or whatever it is you're saying is but in any case we're going to help ourselves to this Laplace." Jessie:  "OK, if you're a Pokémon Watcher, then you won't mind stepping aside and watching us steal this Lapras."

Kenji's mic test involves him saying honjitsu wa seiten nari, honjitsu wa seiten nari (
本日は晴天なり、本日は晴天なり), a phrase used when testing microphones or other wireless applications in Japan. I chose "It's fine today" as a translation but really any phrase used during mic tests will work here.

Musashi's final line has her commenting on how Wocchaa (ウォッチャー), or "(Pokémon) Watcher," sounds like uuronn-cha (ウーロン茶), or "Oolong tea." Both are foreign words, as far as Japanese speakers are concerned, so she's making a joke on how similar the two sound. The English dub comes up with a "watching us steal this Lapras" joke instead, which is actually a pretty clever localization.

Team Rocket makes its getaway:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ニャース 「うまく作戦大成功だニャ!」
Nyarth:  "Everything went exactly as we planned it Nya"
Meowth:  "The Boss ain't expecting this."
コジロウ 「高く売れるぜ、このラプラス」
Kojirou:  "We're gonna be able to sell this Laplace for a lot of money."
James:  "Just wait til we drop this Lapras in his lap!"

So this time around the Rocket trio just wants Laplace so they can sell it for a high price, but 4Kids changed it to have them trying to steal it for their Boss instead.

Ash is safe after all:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
サトシ 「よく頑張ったな、ラプラス。ラプラス、ゲットだぜ!」
Satoshi:  "You did really well, Laplace. Anyway, I got a Laplace!"
Ash:  "You put up quite a fight, Lapras (laughs) But I caught ya anyway!"
ケンジ 「あれでゲット?」
Kenji:  "That counts as a get?"
Tracey:  "Did he say "caught"?"
カスミ 「いつものことよ」
Kasumi:  "This happens all the time, actually."
Misty:  "He likes to dream."
ケンジ 「は?」
Kenji:  "Huh?"
Tracey:  "Huh?"

"Huh" is right! The Japanese dialogue is a perfectly nice little nod at the trope of Satoshi getting a lot of his Pokémon by saving their lives first. But the dub decided to replace that with..."He likes to dream," and I've gotta be honest I have no idea what 4Kids is going for there. What are they trying to go for here?

The narrator takes us out:

Japanese (original)
Japanese (translated)
English Dub
ナレーション 「新しい仲間ケンジとラプラスと共にサトシたちはボンタン島をあ とにした。目指すはサザンクロスのジムがあるナツカン島。一体どんなトレーナーが待ち構えているだろうか?」
Narrator:  "Satoshi and the others have left Bontan Island behind with their new companions Kenji and Laplace. They're now headed toward a place with a Southern Cross Gym, Natsukan Island. What kind of Trainer is waiting for him there?"
Narrator:  "And so Ash leaves with new friends and a new purpose. Now he'll have to battle and beat the Orange Crew to qualify for the Orange League competition. He may lose some matches but please, Ash, don't lose Professor Oak's GS Ball!"

The Japanese version of the Orange Islands arc tells us where we're going next but the dub has other plans, apparently!

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This page was last updated on December 31st, 2020




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