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Pokemon – Season 1 Episode 3 Review: Through the Woods
One thing the Pokemon anime adds to the franchise is a sense of realism. For example the Viridian Forest in the game takes maybe twenty five to thirty minutes to clear depending on if the player stuck around to level up their Pokemon. In the anime it is so vast that it takes a couple of days to get through the forest. One day down in this episode, one more to go in episode four.
So episode three picks up where the second episode left off. Ash encounters a Caterpie and throws a pokeball at it in hopes of catching it. The Caterpie is pulled into the pokeball and after a few tense seconds, Caterpie is caught. If only it was that easy to catch Pokemon in the games. Ash celebrates his catch by jumping around like he’s high on caffeine. He shows off the pokeball to Misty, whom immediately starts freaking out. Apparently Misty is both disgusted by bug Pokemon and is afraid of them, perhaps one of her sisters hid a Weedle in her bed?
Eager to meet his new Pokemon, Ash releases his Caterpie while Misty runs to the other side of the forest to hide from it. Caterpie takes an immediate liking to Misty and runs up to cuddle against her leg. Misty rejects Caterpie, calling it a disgusting bug. After a brief spat between Ash and Misty, Ash and his Pokemon start walking away. Misty follows them, insisting that it is the quickest way through the forest and that she isn’t following Ash. Although she claims that she is still holding Ash responsible for what happened to her bike.
Later that night while Ash and Misty are asleep, Pikachu and Caterpie interact with one another. It is apparent that they are having some kind of conversation, although how they understand one another is beyond me. Although without any form of dialogue, it is implied that Caterpie dreams of evolving into a Butterfree. Caterpie then decides to fall asleep next to Misty. Misty takes exception to this the next morning and wakes everyone up from her scream of terror. Misty hurts Caterpie’s feelings and he crawls back into the pokeball.
While Ash and Misty have another shouting match, a Pidgeotto lands to get its morning breakfast. Ash throws a pokeball at it and the Pideotto smacks it back at him. If we were to put together a list of the top ten dumbest things that Ash has ever done in the series, his choice of Pokemon to weaken Pidgeotto would rank fairly high up there. Ignoring common sense, Ash summons Caterpie to fight Pidgeotto. Needless to say it doesn’t go well and Caterpie is nearly eaten. Pikachu jumps into the fray, zaps Pidgeotto, and Ash successfully catches it with a pokeball.
While Misty chews Ash out for his lack of common sense and failing to understand the concept of strategy, Team Rocket shows up. After giving their motto, Jesse and James declare that they are there to take Pikachu given how unusual he is. Meowth explains to Ash how Pikachu’s power exceeds his evolutionary level. When Ash refuses to give them Pikachu, Jesse and James summon Ekans and Koffing. Koffing uses a sludge attack that temporarily blinds Pikachu, keeping Ash from using him in battle. With Caterpie still weak from the previous battle, Ash summons Pidgeotto. Although Pidgeotto puts up a good fight, he is defeated by Ekans and Koffing.
Left with no option, Ash summons Caterpie. At first it seems as if Caterpie will prove to be no match for Ekans and Koffing. However, with some quick thinking Ash commands Caterpie to use string shot. Caterpie is able to coat Koffing in a cocoon and blind Ekans. After dispatching those two, Caterpie wraps Meowth into a giant cocoon as well. Without any Pokemon left, Team Rocket retreats saying that they’ll be back. Ash congratulates Caterpie for its victory. As Misty is about to apologize to Caterpie, it suddenly evolves into a Metapod. Ash puts Metapod into his back pack and begins to run deeper into the forest, in hopes of catching more Pokemon.
Well it was only a matter of time before Ash added a few Pokemon to his roster. But given how clueless he tends to be I was surprised that Ash was able to catch two Pokemon in this episode. Still he somehow managed it, and I remember that Pidgeotto especially helps out a lot in the first season. I don’t particularly have any real issues with this episode, voice acting was more or less decent. Although the character interaction between Ash and Misty was interesting, and it certainly won’t be the last time that these two get into a shouting match.
Only one more episode of the Viridian Forest left, and then it is onward to Pewter City. Episode four review will be posted soon.