After catching not one, but two starter Pokémon in a row Ash is so ecstatic he sings to the Pokémon theme. This really sets the tone for todays episode. Not necessarily happy, but pretty goofy. Continuing the theme of the previous episodes Ash and crew run straight into a posse of wild squirtle. These aren’t your typical Professor Oak brand squirtle however, they are tough, mischievous, sunglasses wearing squirtle. After a brief rumble with Pikachu the squirtle run away at the sound of Officer Jenny’s siren.
Team Rocket watches from afar scheming once again to capture Pikachu. They unfortunately meet the squirtle squad who outsmarts them and takes all their food. Team Rocket does manage to convince squirtle squad to work for them. The squirtle start messing with our trio. They end up really roughing up Pikachu and tying up Ash and co. Ash is able to get away by convincing the squirtle to let him go so he can get Pikachu a super potion
Ash’s journey to town is a rough one. He refuses to give up and makes it to the shop, named shop. Jessie and James are also in town robbing a store at basically gunpoint. They are hatching a plan to hurt the squirtle squad. After nearly getting himself shot up, him and Jenny run back to help Pikachu. He also gets to use Charmander officially for the first time while headed back too. He does make it safety and gives Pikachu the super potion. Of course right after Team Rocket appears and captures Pikachu. Ash forms a bond with the squad leader by shielding it from Team Rocket’s attack and they’re able to fight back. Pikachu is safety reunited and if it wasn’t obvious before, the leader squirtle joins Ash. Oh and the squirtle squad saved the town from a fire and are accepted by them, so yay.
What I Liked
- Meowth yaying over food
- Meowth pretending to be Jessie and James’ owners
- Brief jaws shoutout (with a goldeen as jaws no less)
- Overall Team Rocket being in the main plot again
What I Disliked
- Ash still doesn’t get how Officer Jennys work
- Riceball = jelly donut
- Dying hair purple is a threat
- Everyone in town is packing heat
- Speaking of which I’m pretty sure an episode in this season was banned due to gun use, how does this get a free pass
This is probably the weakest of the three “Ash catches the starters” episodes. It’s still a good episode, it just falls flat compared to the last two. I think this may be because while the squirtle squad gets a lot of screen time, the one Ash actually catches just blends in and never really connects with any of the characters until the end. If this didn’t come after Ash catching Bulbasaur and Charmander I never would have guessed this particular squirtle would want to come with Ash. The whole squad is a lot of fun though. Watching them messing with the group is pretty fun to watch. Them threatening to dye Misty’s hair purple if Ash doesn’t come back is so stupid it kinda goes back to funny. Especially in the end when it’s revealed their one threat was a bluff anyway, it was just like what.
I’m pretty happy that Team Rocket is part of the main plot again. Them showing up for a five minute scheme just seemed like a waste. Their plan was pretty good too. Meowth improvising with the squirtle squad to gain their trust was great. I was pretty surprised that Team Rocket uses guns to get bombs from a local store. The shock is mostly from guns being used in a kids show. What really gets me is how when Ash goes in after Jessie and James’ little hold up everyone points a gun at him, like what the frick. This was pretty shocking given the overall lighthearted nature of the episode.
Now that this mini arc has ended I wonder what kind of filler will come next, or maybe they’ll finally make it to Vermillion City. Right now the shows going okay I was worried it would get bad fast. Even though the nostalgia effect has mostly worn off I’m still enjoying this for what it is.