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BW 036

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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Best Wishes!

BW 036
Episode Stats:

Japanese Episode BW 036:  "The Fossil Revival!  Archaeos, the Ominous Ancient Bird!!"
American Episode 1436:  "Archeops In The Modern World!"

Pokemon Live Caster:  Crimgan
Japanese Air Date:  June 16th, 2011
American Air Date:  October 8th, 2011

Satoshi and his friends have met up with Araragi-Hakase and Makomo-Hakase to watch them bring an ancient pokemon back to life!  Soon after Archen is revived, Satoshi discovers that it wants to fly.  As Satoshi and his Hatoboh work on making Archen airborne, Araragi-Hakase and Makomo-Hakase try to figure out what it is that the pokemon eats.  Meanwhile, a tree has taken root inside their laboratory and is growing at an alarming rate!  The professors deduce that some seeds from Archen's time were revived along with it and that the screeches the pokemon keeps letting out have the power to accelerate the plant's growth.  After eating the fruit that grows from the ancient plant, Archen evolves into Archeops!  Elsewhere, the Rocket-Dan hack into the professors' computer systems and steal its data.  The trio figures they might as well try to capture Archaeos while they wait for the data to reach Seger-Hakase, so they launch an attack against the ancient pokemon.  They are quickly defeated but do manage to set Archeops' tree on fire as they flee, destroying it and leaving it with nothing to eat.  Suddenly, Satoshi and the others hear the cries of other Archeops!  It turns out that there are other members of the species living somewhere in the Isshu Region, meaning that there is food that the pokemon can eat after all!  The Archeops that Satoshi has befriended flies off with the others so it can start its new life in the modern world.

The idea that Best Wishes is trying to copy that "Kanto feel" is a popular one, and episodes like this one only add fuel to that fire.  Why stop at things like giving Satoshi two Gym Leader traveling buddies and awkward pacing?  Why not go full steam ahead and give us some Kanto-style batshit insane episodes as well?

The plot reminds me of classic episodes like
"Sleeper and Pokemon Hypnotism!?" or "Garura's Lullaby" in that it makes no fucking sense whatsoever.  Seriously, this episode about an Archen who's been revived and all the nonsense that goes with it could have been thrown into the middle of Kanto and not feel out of place.  So Archen's voice has the power to make a tree grow, somehow?  Deathmas' Night Shade attack (and not, say, Will-O-Wisp, an attack that species can also learn) can set things on fire now?  Archen is an "extinct" pokemon, but its evolved form apparently lives within earshot of Araragi-Hakase's and Makomo-Hakase's lab?

Despite all this nonsense, the episode manages to be entertaining.  Makomo-Hakase didn't really set the world on fire in her initial appearance but is interesting enough here to make me want to see more, and Archen manages to be a cute and funny pokemon who's filled with personality.  This episode is also kind of cool because it shows us that Satoshi is frequently rotating his team and isn't just limiting himself to one rotating slot like he did back in his Battle Frontier days.  We're still waiting on Gamagaru to make its second appearance, but at least Hatohboh gets some much needed screentime here.

The dub continues to have almost everyone refer to Fennel as "Dr. Fennel" even though she's not given any such honorific in the English version of the games.  The only exception to this is Professor Juniper, who for some reason drops the "doctor" part whenever she addresses her colleague.  It's weird, but at least they're being consistent with it?  This episode is also noteworthy for featuring the first glimpse of Aloe's apron in the English version, though the fact that she's not actually wearing it has a lot to do with it being kept this time around.  Finally, I just wanted to say that Cilan's "It's sleeping time" is nowhere near as awesome as Dent's "It's sleeping time."  Like, seriously.  No contest.

Archen keeps its Japanese voice.  Archeops, for some puzzling reason, does not.

Dialogue Edit
After Archen falls asleep:

Ash:  "So this is the first bird Pokémon, Archen."
Cilan:  "It's quite an accomplishment."
Iris:  "Guess science can be pretty awesome sometimes."

Here is yet another example of the actor's delivery altering the meaning of the dialogue.  In the Japanese version, Iris genuinely sounds impressed with how amazing science is.  In the English version, though, she acts as if the very idea of science being this amazing thing is unheard of.

Later, the professors tell Cilan about their research:

Fennel:  "Professor Juniper is conducting extensive research on the origins of Pokémon."
Professor Juniper:  "It's a study filled with many more questions than answers.  Take Archen for example.  Though Archen's the ancestor to all flying-type Pokémon, it can't fly."

Originally, Araragi-Hakase states that Archen is said to be the ancestor of flying-type pokemon that can't fly, not that it actually is

Next, Meowth comments on Archen as it's climbing up the tree outside the laboratory:

Meowth:  "We're talking no lack of color."

Remember how, back in the Diamond & Pearl days, the Rocket trio was dubbed horribly?  And how the majority of their lines were written in a way that it was hard to know what the hell they were talking about if you weren't already familiar with what they said in the original?  Well, this line from Meowth feels like one of those old rewrites.

Originally, Nyasu describes Archen as being a hade na pokemon da nya (派手なポケモンだニャ), or "a flashy pokemon nya."  When you look at the dub line next to this, you can see that TPCI didn't really change the meaning of his line, but that's kind of hard to tell if you only have the dub line to go by.  "No lack of color?"  Like, are kids supposed to get that on their first viewing?

As Emolga relaxes after causing a little mischief:

Iris:  "Emolga!  I told you not to use Volt Switch!"

No, Iris, you actually didn't.  You didn't tell it to do anything, really.

Originally, Iris tells Emonga, right then and there, not to use Volt Change.  She doesn't act like her pokemon's disobeying an order she never gave.

As Archen gets close to learning how to fly,

Professor Juniper:  "Ash is such an interesting trainer."
Cilan:  "Huh?"
Professor Juniper:  "He's putting an amazing amount of effort into help train a Pokémon that's just been restored.  It's obvious he's got a natural talent for putting himself in a Pokémon's place."
Cilan:  "Like a unique ingredient in a four star recipe.  And that uniqueness and natural talent are the principal reasons why I'm traveling with him."

In the Japanese version, Dent states that the qualities that Araragi-Hakase praises Satoshi for is the reason that they - as in both Iris and Dent - are traveling with him.  Cilan, however, keeps Iris out of it.

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