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Dogasu's Backpack | Episode Comparisons | Kanto Region
Japanese Episode 017: "The Island of Giant Pokemon!?"
American Episode 117: "Island of the Giant Pokémon!"
Pokemon Dare Da? Yadon (Japanese), Slowbro (American)
Japanese Air Date: July 22nd, 1997
American Air Date: September 30th, 1998
Important Places: Aopulco (Porta Vista)
Once the storm from the Gyarados' Dragon Rage subsides, our heroes find themselves on an unknown island. After everyone gets their bearings, Satoshi discovers that all but two of his Monster Balls are missing! Elsewhere on the island, Satoshi's Pikachu, Hitokage, Zenigame, and Fushigidane wander around, trying to find their master. They eventually run into Musashi's and Kojirou's pokemon who, after refusing to battle because their masters aren't there, decide to help the others find their trainers. That night, loud growlings can be heard, and before long our heroes discover that the island is home to an assortment of giant pokemon! The next day, Musashi and Kojirou, who had been hiding out in a phone booth the entire time, are chased by one of these giant pokemon. They eventually flee to a roller coaster where, by pure chance, they run into Satoshi and his friends. As the cart careens through the island, Pikachu and the others emerge from a forest and catch up with their trainers. Eventually, their mine cart jumps a ramp and crashes into a giant Thunder, an event that reveals that the giant pokemon are all giant robots who were part of the theme park Pockemon Land. The robots all get destroyed, saving Satoshi and his friends from further rampaging. Now that everyone is reunited with their pokemon, they wander into Aopulco, a resort town that happens to be on the same island. Will Satoshi find his way back to the path to being a Pokemon Master? To be continued!
One thing that's
interesting to me is that neither Pidgeotto nor Butterfree get to join
in on the fun. Same with Kasumi's and Takeshi's pokemon. Did the
animators just not have the budget to animate a huge group of pokemon like
that? Or did they think that those pokemon would be boring and
wouldn't really add anything to the group dynamic? It's a shame
we never really got a sequel to this episode while the "original three"
are still around because I think it would
have been neat to see what kinds of personalities the writers would
have given them.
version actually translates the subtitles very well, so there's really
nothing in that respect that I could complain about. I had
actually entertained the idea of posting images of all the Japanese
subtitles and all the American subtitles, but when I realized that that
would require me to take over 140 screencaps (70+ for the Japanese
version, 70+ for the dub), I pretty much decided that you guys can do
without. Sorry. Apparently, some of the foreign dubs that
use 4Kids' modified footage also kept the English subtitles, so they
had to end up having the pokemon actually speak to each other in human
language instead. Weird.
All of the
pokemon robots except Pikachu
kept their Japanese voices. The robotic Pikachu had a really,
reeeeally deep voice while, in the dub, it spoke using stock audio of
"Oh! I've lost the PokéBall with the Ekans I got for my
birthday last year!"
actually got their pokemon as seasonal
gifts; Musashi got her pokemon for 中元 (chuugen) while Kojirou got his for
お歳暮 (oseibo). Little
kids in America wouldn't have any idea what those are, so the holidays
were changed to more Western-friendly variants.
The dub dialogue
also suggests that Jessie's had her pokemon for a year or less, while
the same thing isn't implied in the Japanese version.
episode, there are moments where the subtitles will simply consist of
nothing but ellipses or question marks. While word balloons with
nothing but these simple punctuation marks are used in Japanese comics all the time, the same can't be
said for American comics. So, 4Kids just removed
subtitles also give a hint at something that the English subtitles do
not; pokemon genders. The Japanese language has a bunch of
different words to express first person pronouns (I, we, me, us, etc.),
and a lot of the time, the pronoun used depends on the speaker's
gender. Words like boku
and ore, for example, are
often used by men while atashi
used by women. A person using a pronoun that doesn't fit in with
their gender can have certain connotations; men who use atashi are typically stereotyped as
being effeminate while women who use boku
are seen as being tomboyish.
So how about the
pokemon in this episode? Which personal pronouns do they use, and
what do their choices tell us about their genders? Well...
Now these don't
necessarily mean that all of these pokemon are, without a shadow of a
doubt, male. But the evidence is pretty darn convincing. If
any of these pokemon were meant to be female, then the fact that they
use ore or boku would make them tomboyish, and
I seriously doubt that's what the show's producers had in mind when
assigning them personal pronouns.
message board "what's ____'s gender?" debates!
This one's kind of weird:
Meowth: "It can't be! My master's not around and I always seem to act like a rat!"
In the Japanese version, Nyarth does indeed say "goshuujin ga inai," which can translate to "my master's not around." So I can't claim that 4Kids messed up the translation here. However, it can also translate to "I don't have a master," a line that's very different from the one 4Kids produced.
So basically, the dub, due to weird translation issues, explicitly states that Meowth has a master while the Japanese version is a bit more ambiguous about it. Since we never hear mention of Nyarth's master again, I think it's safe to say that the ambiguity present in the Japanese version is what was intended.
Click on each
image to view a larger version.
While it is
consistent as far as 4Kids and their practice of removing all traces of
Japanese writing goes, it's also completely unnecessary
(well...more so than usual) since the sign's already been translated! Why does
4Kids think that little kids can't handle seeing non-romanized
For the first time since the start of the series, the pokemon featured during the show's "Who's That Pokemon?" segment has been changed for the dub:
/ Side Note
First of all, the
word oden is removed from the very
first shot of the scene.
Click on each image to view a larger version.
Next, we see the
pokemon kind of sitting around the table and eating. We see
Dogars and Arbo crying, and then we see Fushigidane (who seems to be
drunk) arguing with Zenigame as Nyarth sleeps in the foreground (who,
judging by the blush on his face, is also drunk). Next, we see
Arbo crying to Pikachu as Yadoran fans itself in front of the hot
Next, we see the
exterior shot of the oden
stand again. In the dub, the camera just sort of zooms out until
the scene ends, resulting in one of the weirdest, most nonsensical
scenes of the episode. In the Japanese version, however, we get
subtitles that, for whatever reason, weren't translated in the
seem to be any real flow to anything, is there? I'm guessing that
what these subtitles are supposed to be are random snippets from the
various conversations going on at the same time. 4Kids probably
felt that these were all too random to translate and couldn't be
bothered to just up and rewrite the whole scene, so they just removed
the subtitles altogether. I'm guessing the drunk-ish dialogue
In the very next
scene, 4Kids adds a subtitle that wasn't there originally to let us
know what time it is:
Click on each image to view a larger version.Side Note
Giovanni's voice is given this voice filtering thingee to make him sound all mysterious or whatever while Sakaki does not. In the Japanese version, Sakaki just talks normally.
Also, in the Japanese version, when the Rocket-Dan blast past the giant Kabutops and knocks it over with the telephone cable, Musashi apologizes (Gomen nasai!). I thought it was funny, but the dub apparently didn’t think so; they don’t have Jessie say anything.
The inside of the Pokemon Land tour boat has “Pocke Mon Land” written in English letters behind the tour guide.
Click on each
image to view a larger version.
The sign back
there was written before the Japanese producers settled on
their romanization of the show's title creatures. Spelling
pokemon with a c in it does make some amount of sense (Pocket Monsters as opposed to Pocket Monsters), but, as we all
know, they eventually settled on the Pokémon romanization
It's good to see
4Kids keep up the alternating colors of the letters in their version,
This page was last updated on September 23rd, 2019
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