Ash’s gang is headed to Cerulean City. Misty is trying hard to keep Ash away from there, it doesn’t work. She mysteriously disappears from the group as they enter the city. Ash and Brock stumble across a crime scene and meets a very unusual Officer Jenny. Thieves have stolen some equipment that I’m sure you won’t see Team Rocket using later. Ash finds the gym and t’s wildly different from Pewter City’s. There’s some sort of water show going on and they have an aquarium of fish. Ash approaches the performer girls who turn out to be the gym trainers. They don’t want to battle so instead the ginger one tries giving Ash a badge without a battle. Ash is very conflicted over taking a badge he didn’t earn but the girl pushes him into just taking it. Suddenly Misty reappears to stop Ash from just taking the badge. Turns out these girls are Misty’s sister and they’re pretty mean to her. The pick on her just cause she’s younger which is so messed up. It makes me feel almost bad for Misty. Misty decides she’ll be the one to battle Ash for the badge. The field makes the battle tough for Ash, it’s just a giant pool of water with platform. It also doesn’t help that Pikachu refuses to battle Misty (awwww). Staryu vs Butterfree is a pretty fierce battle. Misty has an advantage with all the water, but Ash doesn’t hold back. It’s a pretty even fight. Eventually they both call back their Pokémon and instead it becomes Pidgeotto vs Starmie. This time Pidgeotto very easily and literally blows Starmie away. When Ash gets the edge on Misty, Team Rocket bursts in. They use the hose and vaccum they obvious stole earlier to take all the water from the pool. This also sucks up some Pokémon, including Pikachu. Ash actually comes up with a really great idea by telling Pikachu to use thunderbolt while in the water. This sends Team Rocket blasting away out of their own hose. In spite of not officially winning, Ash is still given the badge for saving the gym.
What I Like
Pikachu’s reaction to the “sensational” sisters
Pikachu refusing to battle his friend
Misty and Ash’s battle
Ash getting the badge for saving the day
What I Dislike
Brock disappears about 1/3 in, it’s never explained he just comes back last second to see Ash’s badge.
Brock’s gym badge is his ID
A fish aquarium, like real fish
You can apparently wash off stun spore in water
Sometimes James wants to go straight- definitely did a double take at that one
In the game Cerulean City was always my favorite to go to. It had the exciting nugget bridge, you got to meet the mysterious bill, and to top it all off you got to go to a gym that was also a pool. This episode really brought back a lot of those feeling just experiencing the city. It was weird having an episode where Brock was gone most of the time, but Misty was really able to help support the episode. Yeah she was still her loudmouth bratty self, but I think her having to actually back up the stuff she’s saying with a battle really makes a difference. It also helped seeing how her sisters treat her. Everything they say to her is an insult, it really makes you see how it’s made her the hothead she is. I likes how Ash has a mini moral dilemma when he nearly takes a badge without earning it. Only because Misty comes in does he have to earn it. For once she was important to something. The battle they two have I’d argue is the best one of the series so far. Not only do they use multiple Pokémon, but since they are so evenly matched it goes on for a fair chunk of time. Pidgeotto and Starmie’s battle may have been a bit conveniently short. At least this is when Team Rocket comes in. For the first time I found they’re intrusion a bit unneeded, I didn’t dislike it but they’re plans were ruined so fast it was more like what was the point. So far I’m also really liking the trend of Ash earning his badges through other methods than winning. This is really interesting to me because I don’t remember anything like this ever happing, especially in later seasons.