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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Pokémon Horizons
Japanese Episode 006: "The Ancient Monster Ball"
English Episode 2605: "The Ancient Poké Ball!"
Dr. Friede's Pokémon Seminar: Soublades
Japanese Air Date: May 12th, 2023
American Air Date: March 7th, 2024
Important Characters: Spinel (Spinel)
Amegeo rushes toward Liko but her pendant puts up a barrier that protects her from the Explorer's attack. Liko and Roy then come together to challenge Amegeo to a two-on-one battle. Nyahoja and Hogator manage to get a hit in by using teamwork but Amegeo’s Soublades is clearly in a league of its own. All hope seems lost when all of a sudden Liko's pendant and Roy's Monster Ball react to each other to release a black Rayquaza from Roy’s Monster Ball! The legendary Pokémon begins to shower the area with meteors and so Amegeo and the others retreat back to their base. The black Rayquaza also makes its exit before long. Our bewildered heroes regroup and try to make sense of everything that just happened, with Roy's grandfather suggesting that maybe the legendary Pokémon once traveled with an ancient adventurer. Some time later Roy approaches the newly repaired Brave Asagi to tell Hogator he wants to continue spending time together. The Fire-Type seems to feel the same way and so Roy gets Hogator with a Monster Ball, making the Paldea starter his very first Pokémon! Elsewhere, the Explorers’ boss Gibeon takes Amegeo off the Liko case and reassigns it to his colleague Spinel. Back on the island, Friede and the others invite Roy to join their crew and so, after a quick conversation with his grandfather, Roy becomes the newest member of the Rising Volteccers. What kinds of adventures await our heroes as they head to the Paldea Region?
The second three parter of the series works hard to get a lot of exposition out of the way in order to get the series started properly, and for the most part I think it succeeds. Roy's Monster Ball is revealed to have a black Rayquaza, we find out a bit more about Lucius, Roy officially gets Hogator and joins the Rising Volteccers, and we meet more members of the Explorers.
I really liked the conversation Roy has with his grandfather at the end of this episode. Past series haven't always had the best track record when it comes to justifying why certain characters decide to drop everything and follow Satoshi around (Best Wishes! and XY were especially bad about this) but this particular series actually takes the time to sit down and go OK, what would it take for Roy's grandfather to be fine with his grandson traveling around the world with a bunch of people he just met? Roy's speech to his grandfather about wanting to reach for just not his goals but also Hogator's was actually pretty convincing, and if I was Roy's grandfather (and also lived in the comparatively safe world this show takes place in) then I'd probably give my blessing as well.
This episode also provides us with two different ways of building intrigue in a series, one I don't like and then one I do. When it comes to the former, we get the black Rayquaza. Now a lot of shows like to create these little "mysteries" where they have a character inexplicably appear out of nowhere, leave just as abruptly, and then have everyone spend the rest of the episode ooh-ing and ahh-ing about how little they know about this myster~ious stranger~. The hope is that the potential of what could happen, of what could be the story here is enough to keep fans buzzing. But that kind of stuff doesn't really work for me. This kind of storytelling just feels like a lazy way to fake intrigue, and the final answers we'll get almost never live up to the hype.
On the other hand, we get the expansion of the Explorers as a group. What makes this work better than the black Rayquaza stuff is that they're all humans and so they can have actual conversations with each other, sure, but there's more to it than that. The show actually tells us things about the new characters. Gibeon's the respected boss of the organization, Hamber is worried about how they look in front of their boss, Spinel respects Amegeo but also doesn't miss the opportunity to roast him whenever possible, they all apparently join remotely judging by the way just about everyone's revealed to be holograms at the end, etc. Instead of having these new characters leave the second they appear on screen the show actually gives us some details to latch onto and that, to me, makes all the difference in the world. The show doesn't tell us everything about this new group of characters, of course, but they don't tell us nothing either, and that to me is a huge factor missing from the black Rayquaza stuff at the moment.
As I've stated in previous comparisons I generally like the voice acting in Pokémon Horizons, Fuecoco and Nidothing aside. And so I also usually like Amethio's voice. But something I noticed in the last episode, and then this one as well, is that there are times when he's a little bit too calm sounding for the scene in question. Moments where his voice actor Shun Horie is absolutely screaming out of a sense of urgency are changed to him just kind of...raising his voice a little, and it doesn't really sound right. Again, I usually think the Amethio voice is fine but I do hope that in future episodes his English voice actor is able to put in a little more energy into his battle scenes.
The black Rayquaza keeps its Japanese voice.
During the recap:
The mention of how Roy and Hogator sang together to win is removed from the English dub. Though to be fair, if I was TPCi I wouldn't want to draw any more attention to any of the singing from the last episode either.
After the episode's title screen Amethio challenges Liko and Roy to a battle:
Originally Amegeo's talking to the children, not his Pokémon.
Cut -- 10 seconds
The eyecatch comes super early this episode and gives us Amegeo and Roy:
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Nidothing's video of the day:
I don't know what it is about Gurumin's videos that causes TPCi to get rewrite happy but this is like the third one of these I've had to bring up in six episodes. The overall theme of the video is the same in both versions but the actual dialogue, line for line, is all different. Is Gurumin going to be the Team Rocket of this series, dialogue-wise?
Roy's grandpa tells everyone about the Black Rayquaza:
So the first thing to point out here is yay, TPCi figured out that Lucius is only one person! Hopefully the mistake they made the last time they brought him up was just a one time fluke.
The other thing to point out is Friede referring to the ancient adventurer as a "hero." The Japanese version consistently only ever refers to Lucius as the "ancient adventurer" but the dub goes back and forth between "ancient adventurer" and "hero" throughout the rest of the episode. I imagine "hero" was sometimes chosen because it's a shorter word and so it gives the script writers more wiggle room when it comes to mouth flaps but the truth is that's not what's being said in the Japanese version.
Roy gets ready to catch Fuecoco:
TPCI's translation of Roy's final line here is fine, in a vacuum, but in the context of Pokémon the phrase "I choose you!" has already been claimed by one Mr. Ash Ketchum. The Japanese version of Roy's catchphrase, kimi ga ii tte kimetan da, is very reminiscent of Japanese version of Satoshi's catchphrase, kimi ni kimeta, but the two are also different enough that we know they're meant to be different.
Liko convinces Roy to come with them:
The conversation Liko's referring to in the Japanese version is that one where Roy first mentions the ancient adventurer. The dub omits this reference from its dialogue.
Back at the Explorers'...base?
There are a lot of differences here for some reason. Spinel's first line in the series was him giving Amegeo a backhanded compliment in the Japanese version while he straight up insults him in the dub. Amegeo, for his part, denies he was ever beaten while Amethio concedes that actually, he was.
Finally, Liko's ending narration:
As you can see, Liko neglects to mention the pendant in the English dub version of this narration.
The "To Be Continued" text gets removed again.
Click on each image to view a larger version.
This page was last updated on December 13th, 2023
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