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Review HZ018: Flying Pikachu, Soaring High!

RetroPokeFan

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This week we get to see how Friede and Captain Pikachu met for the first time. And it was a fantastic episode as well and a beautifully gorgeous one as well with some spectacular scenery that's just incredible to look at.

It's also great seeing more of Liko's mother, how the Rising Volt Tacklers came to be, young Liko and even a cameo appearance from a certain Paldea gym leader too.

Probably one of my favourite episodes of this series.

Anyhoo, now that I've rambled on, it's time for you all to discuss the episode.

 
An alright episode for the flashback with Fredie and Cap Pikachu. Also, love to see Liko mother introduce him for Pikachu that eventually become her daughter greatest guardian when she is not there for her. Liko as child is adorable.

Overall rating: B-
 
At least this pikachu origin story actually confirmed it was the same pikachu from the present, which is an improvement from the last time they tried it

Not sure why it needed movie-quality animation though
Yea definitely odd that they used such high quality animation on a flashback of all things. Did the Masters 8 change the game to how they approach the animation budget or something?
 
I guess a Pikachu focused episode means more budget? There's a certain new style/approach for the better animated episodes of HZ and I'm loving it.

Lots of cute details: Quaxly tickling Fuecoco then playing together; Quaxly deciding to chill on Ludlow's lap; Pikachu struggling to gather all the berries; Liko being slightly camera shy.

As for the backstory, I liked that Pikachu sparked up Friede's motivation and it was nice that it all circles back to Lucca. Her choice of Liko guardians is less random after this episode. Also, how old is Lucca? I thought Friede is her age until this ep, but I guess he's younger than I imagined.

Baby Liko is adorbs

I'm also pleased that the Horizons writers seem to love Paldea, because JN would've set this episode in Kanto for sure. Plus, Larry cameo FTW
 
Wonder if next episode will change the "Liko and Roy set off" subtitle.

The fact the intro didnt play at the begining, but did at the end in the background is what season finales do in seasonal anime.
Would also explain the higher quality animation if thats how its being treated, a finale to the first of... I forget what they called the section subtitle split things.
 
Wonder if next episode will change the "Liko and Roy set off" subtitle.

The fact the intro didnt play at the begining, but did at the end in the background is what season finales do in seasonal anime.
Would also explain the higher quality animation if thats how its being treated, a finale to the first of... I forget what they called the section subtitle split things.
This episode does feel like the end to a first arc, so I wonder if anything will change come next episode.
 
Cap turns out to not be a Pikachu that knows Fly but instead, a Pikachu that can fly using Volt Tackle (unless that counts as knowing Fly). Fride and Orio are childhood friends and the Rising Volt Tacklers were originally just the two of them and their Pokémon. Liko's mom is not only Fride's teacher she's also the one that introduced him to Cap.

Liko seems to have gotten used to hanging out with Gurumin.
 
I guess Friede is the Genwunner who grew out of Pokémon but then decided that he still has some love for them. Interesting to focus on adult characters who have already fulfilled their goals and have jobs but feel like their daily routines have become monotonous.

In the past there was more focus on the pre-teen or teenage characters trying to find out what they wanted to become when they were older (like for example Bianca, Serena and Chloe).
 
My favorite episode of horizons so far. Even though pikachu has been in the anime since forever I’m glad that they are making Cap be his own character separated from past Pikachu’s with his personality, backstory and even coming up with its own training strategies. Loved that the episode was full of little details such as Liko’s mother connecting Friede with Pikachu, Friede being shy when it comes to talk about his past and not wanting to be on camera, and Orla building the ship. Those shots at the sunrise were so beautiful reminiscence of a Makoto Shinkai film.

I’m looking forward to see how the rest of the crew joined them.
 
I really hope they give Captain Pikachu the flying Tera Type whenever they return to Paldea, and have him use it during a battle.
 
I've been very busy these past few days, but finally had some time to watch the episode and it was worth the wait!

The story of how Friede and Cap met was beautifully done. Friede goes through an awesome character arc in just a single episode. Going from a directionless Pokemon Professor who believes he has nothing left to learn to regaining his passion when he meets a Pokemon that defies all of his expectations, both physically and mentally. While he figures out that Cap flies using Volt Tackle relatively quickly, he can't understand /why/ Pikachu tries day after day after day, and doesn't until he sees the same horizon Cap does. He realizes that Pokemon are complex creatures with their own wants and desires. He realizes that he actually knows nothing about Pokemon and his thirst for knowledge is finally rekindled.

The animation was incredible in this episode. Everything was stunning. They knew the animation had to match the emotion and they knocked it out of the park. I nearly teared up when Friede and Cap saw the horizon. It perfectly encapsulates the main message of the series, that of the endless pursuit of new horizons.

Larry made his anime-debut in the most normal, plain, arguably boring way possible, which is perfect for his character. I wonder if we'll end up seeing him again in the present-day.

I like how Landau refers to Friede meeting Cap as a "special encounter" like certain Pokemon you can get in the games.

I wonder if we'll see Flying Tera-Type Pikachu in the future.

It was surprising to see the cold-open for this episode, I don't think Pokemon has ever done that before. It definitely feels like a conclusion to this segment of the show.

Liko and Roy trying to make a YouTube video was cute.

This episode has me hyped to watch more.
 
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The beginning feels like a missed opportunity to make a mockumentary-style episode since many scenes are framed like that, but it was still cute to watch the trio feeling like the juniors of the RVT and wanting to make their own viral video. The rest of the episode was simple but fun, the story was really well told, the presentation was top-notch and it made me more invested on what the RVT are and what they want to do, which is pretty much exploring the world at their own pace.
 
A bit late, but this was a really nice and enjoyable episode focusing on the backstory for the crew's captain. And we finally find out where Pokemon Horizons got its name from, woo hoo.

Captain Pikachu always felt like the biggest elephant... well, rat in the room, so I think it makes sense that someone eventually asked about it. After last episode's battle, it makes sense that the curious kids were the first ones to bring it up, though I do think it's kinda funny that Mollie and Murdock never really questioned why Cap was on the crew despite having joined the crew for much longer.

The flashbacks looked great and well-animated, the change in aspect ratio felt weird at first but ended up being quite fitting. We finally get some more exposition regarding Friede's background as a Pokemon Professor and how his encounter with Cap managed to bring him out of his slump and reignite his passion to uncover the world's mysteries. It was also nice seeing some of his relationships in the past, like how he's been acquainted with Ludlow and Orla for such a long time, the latter of whom decided to help Friede without any hesitation upon being given the request to remodel Ludlow's boat. And of course, there's Friede's meeting with his teacher/mentor, Lucca, who set him up with his special encounter with Cap in the first place. Really looking forward to seeing the role that she'll play as the series goes on.

Side note: I don't like how Liko saying that she wants to talk about Sprigatito with her mom the next time she sees her sounds like a death flag. I know it sounds weird using the term "death flag" when talking about the Pokemon anime, but uh... that's just the feeling that I got from the scene.
 
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