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Japanese Episode AG 104: "Izabe Tou Pokemon Kontesuto! Raibaru ni Ki o Tsukero!!"
("The Izabe Island Pokemon Contest! Beware of the Rival!!")
American Episode 375: "A Cacturne for the Worse"
Orchid-Hakase Pokemon Lecture: Kemusso
Japanese Air Date: November 18th, 2004
American Air Date: November 26th, 2005
Important Characters: Harley (Harley), Meno-chan (Miss Tent)
Important Places: Izabe Island (Izabe Island), Purika City (Purika City)
While on the ferry to Izabe Island, home of Haruka's next Pokemon Contest challenge, the young Coordinator meets a Noctus trainer named Harley. Without realizing it, Haruka offends Harley and earns a spot on his enemies list. Later, on the island, Haruka is ready to go on stage, but her brother Masato is nowhere to be found. He eventually shows up with Harley, who tells Haruka that he was merely talking with the young boy. The Purika Contest begins, and both Haruka and Harley make it past the Appeals round. Harley is surprised that this brat could actually have some skill as a Coordinator, so he gives her some bad advice for her first battle against an Ametama trainer. She wins the battle anyway and enters the final battle angry with the Coordinator who gave her bogus advice. The final battle begins, and Haruka quickly gains the upper hand in battle. Harley, desperate for a victory, presses a button on a remote control that plays a recording of Masato telling an embarrassing story about Haruka! The Coordinator turns red as everyone in the audience laughs at her, giving Harley's Noctus a chance to get in a few cheap shots. Haruka is able to recover, though, and her Fushigidane is able to win the battle. Haruka wins the Pokemon Contest, and as she celebrates her victory, Harley vows that he'll make sure the young Coordinator pays.
So here's the episode that everyone was scared sh*tless over: the introduction of everyone's favorite ambiguously gay Coordinator, Harley. Ever since "The Legend of Thunder," in which one of the effeminate looking male characters was changed into a female (even though there are some people who still refuse to admit that the sex change took place), fans have been scared that Harley would share a similar fate. After all, the guy looks pretty girly and he does have some very effeminate mannerisms.
As we all know by now, the fans' worst fears never came to pass. Harley remained a man, kept his original name, and had what many fans considered to be a very appropriate voice. It's almost as if 4Kids went out of its way to make sure that this particular character remained as close to the original as possible so that fans wouldn't have anything to complain about.
As for the episode itself, it's a pretty decent introduction episode to a character we'll be seeing again and again as the series continues. The dubbed version goes a little overboard with the edits, in my opinion, and Mike Pollock seems to have given up on making Contesta not sound exactly like his narrator voice, but other than that it's a good episode.
Also, for the record, the episode's title is "A Cacturne for the Worse," not "A Cacturne for the Worst." A lot of people make that mistake.
Cut--5 seconds altogether
Three seconds are trimmed from the opening shot of the episode.
The episode's title screen is shortened by two seconds. Ho-hum.
Harley's drawing's a bit different in the American version:
This edit only takes place in the Kids' WB! airings. Fans in the U.K. and other English-speaking countries get the image on the left.
So why was a skull-and-crossbones changed into some sort of deformed-looking frowny face? Especially when the skulll-and-crossbones drawn by Cacturne during the Appeals round in this very same episode remains unaltered? My only guess is that Kids' WB! thought that it looked too much like a death threat in this context for it to remain unchanged.
The same edit takes place at the end of the episode as well.
Vivian ad-libs this bit of dialogue:
Vivian: "Ladies and gentlemen, we're rapidly coming to the close of this year's exciting Purika Pokemon Contest!"
Originally, Vivian makes no reference to the Purika Contest being a yearly event. Can you imagine how much that would suck if you had to wait a year between Contests?
Unlike the last paint edit, this one is present in all the English versions of the show.
Yup, Caroline's cleavage has been removed in the English version. Click on each images above to view bigger versions.
Wow, times sure have changed since the days when Prima used to be allowed to walk around with her breasts practically bursting out of her shirt. Considering the shot above only lasts about half a second, it's a wonder that 4Kids even bothered to change it at all.
So Harley delivers this line that just reeks of a 4Kids screw-up:
Harley: "Oh~! Don't get yourself all worked up or you could evolve into an Octillery!"
The natural assumption is that 4Kids goofed up on this one. After all, these are the people who said that Arbok evolved into Serviper, right? It's only natural to assume that this is yet another example of the company screwing up yet again. I certainly thought that was the case.
However, after comparing the two versions, I can say that 4Kids actually didn't mess up this time. The line that English Harley delivers is actually the same as what he says in the Japanese version; that Haruka, being a Menokurage, could get so angry that she'd evolve into an Octank.
According to an e-mail I received from Akashiya Moka, referring to someone as an "octopus" in Japanese is considered to be an insult in the same way that calling someone a "dog" is an insult here and in other countries. So you know how the dub will insert Pokémon names into common real world sayings (i.e. "I'm so hungry I could eat a Horsea!")? Well, apparently they do that in the Japanese version as well.
Cut--4 seconds altogether
Three seconds are cut from the shot after Kids' WB!'s final commercial break.
And a second is cut from the TO BE CONTINUED... screen.
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