• The Anime and Manga staff has posted a PSA regarding Go and how we'll handle future cases involving him from now onwards.

    We strongly recommend checking out this thread.

    Thank you in advance.

Review JN030: The Reluctant Pikachu and the Exasperated Barrierd

Into the Nether portal...
Joined
Aug 10, 2019
Messages
1,122
Reaction score
4,890
A... below average episode. Starting off, there was absolutely no prior build-up to this 'jealousy' which only looks worse off after last week's jealousy resolution (Yamper facing the issue whereas Pikachu runs away), this episode might have made sense if Ash neglected Pikachu for 15-20 episodes straight but for it to come out of nowhere and the placement of it made it feel odd. Even during that initial match, Pikachu seemed fine but after that, he suddenly starts pouting? Just one day of being benched and there's sudden anger? Wonder why he never had a seizure in similar scenarios before, considering how much attention Ash gave to other Pokemon over Pikachu often. If anything, Riolu was the one persisting for more training over and over, so it's not like Ash could say no especially given its nature. The entire 'jealousy' stuff was a plot tool for what was essentially Pikachu Runs Away Exciting Adventure 2.0. I'll need to know what Ash said since I didn't catch most of it, but if Ash said anything OOC to Pikachu initially, then it's just another dent to this episode (him being one track minded has always been in character for him though).

Some positives to this episode include those Episode 1 flashbacks though they kind of make Pikachu's jealousy all the more jarring, because he didn't bother to take into consideration the bond they've shared, I wouldn't really call it character development since it was always a part of Ash and Pikachu. Even then, that moment and Ash/Pikachu bonding came at the end and the episode ended soon, most of the episode was about the entire journey itself which was bland. Honestly, they should just leave all Ash/Pikachu bonding episodes to Aya Matsui, she handles them the best (SM020, anyone?).

Surge's Assistant appearing is a plus point.
Delia with loose hair is a plus point.
No reserves is a negative point.
No Kangaskhan is a negative point.
 
Last edited:
Making a Splash
Joined
Dec 13, 2017
Messages
17,142
Reaction score
36,321
I must say, I was positively surprised to see one of the Vermilion Gym Trainers as Ash's WCS opponent in this episode.

Who would've thought Pikachu would put those twerking lessons from Alola to use for hitchhiking?

The episode 1 recreation did actually serve a purpose for Pikachu.

That song that Delia and Ash sing to Pikachu is a Japanese ending theme from season 1, if I remember correctly.
 
Only puts shiny pokémon into HOME
Joined
Mar 1, 2019
Messages
345
Reaction score
613
I need subtitles to understand 100%.
It was one of those episode that me as a kid would love. Mr. Mime shows it deserves more screentime and honestly is perhaps one of my favorites out of all of Ash's Pokémon.
The jealousy part is way out of character. However I think Delia nurturing Pikachu is what made it want to go to Pallet Town.
The episode wasn't as weird as I would expect it. For me the really weird part is having 2 of these back to back
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
1,476
Reaction score
2,745
Huh, that’s weird. Just going off the preview, I was going in expecting this to be THE worst episode of this entire first half of this season, an episode that would be like a fly who has ran into sticky tape and is now stuck there permanently but that ended up not being the case.

It’s just kind of meh at best as far as Pikachu episodes go. Seeing my favourite mouse acting OOC a bit was no doubt the bad part of the episode but he at least redeems himself in the end (though then again it is a given it was going to happen!) and on the other side there are at least a few nice moments (especially with Delia), a homage to the first episode and some neat shots that at least saved this episode from feeling like a complete waste of my time.

So not as bad as I was expecting but it’s definitely still not one of my favourites either and an episode I most likely won’t be going back to in a long while.
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 12, 2011
Messages
1,006
Reaction score
747
I suppose this was a nice episode towards the end, but the whole thing hinged on both Ash and Pikachu being uncharacteristic assholes to facilitate it. We also see Goh take Ash’s bed- asshole, and a flock of Spearow- The asshole Pokémon.

The only one here that isn’t an asshole Mr Mime, but we do indeed get it twice confirmed the Mr Mime really does watch you while you sleep!

Also, would you look at that, Sobble is hanging round like a walking Pokémon.
 
Last edited:
Shiny hunter
Joined
Jul 11, 2006
Messages
342
Reaction score
898
I must admit that I enjoyed watching it, and I would be more than happy to rate it highly if it wasn't for one teeny tiny little flaw that was actually something of a major flaw that if thought about for even a second completely destroys the integrity of the experience: The entire conflict the episode was built around should not have happened.

Ash and Pikachu have over 20 years of bonding experience, for Pikachu to suddenly turn into a petulant little shit because Ash was training Riolu was completely out of character and wouldn't have happened with the Pikachu we've been watching for at least the last 22 of those 23 years. Then of course you have the fact that Ash and Pikachu have a bond and there's absolutely no way that Ash wouldn't have noticed that Pikachu was getting upset with the attention he was giving to Riolu and made efforts to correct it.

It was nice to see the character interactions with Delia and I'm always happy to see Koharu getting in there and contributing to continuity and I liked that what I thought was blatant nostalgia bait (hell, it probably was) actually contributed to the episode and wasn't just there for the hell of it, but at the end of the day I just can't look past the horrific destruction of Ash and Pikachu's characters.

If this episode existed in its own bubble or Journies was an actual new series with the first episode of it being Ash and Pikachu's first episode then it would have been one of my favorites, but as it is it just doesn't work. It's a shame because this episode's basic structure could have worked really well had it been about Raboot running away from Gou after he wouldn't help it train to master its Ember and actually showed Ash and/or Koharu explaining to Gou exactly what he did wrong to make it run away in the first place, ending with a proper reconciliation and not some 'you helped me dance that one time, now we're friends again' one we actually got a couple of months back.
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 13, 2017
Messages
1,094
Reaction score
713
A... below average episode. Starting off, there was absolutely no prior build-up to this 'jealousy' which only looks worse off after last week's jealousy resolution (Yamper facing the issue whereas Pikachu runs away), this episode might have made sense if Ash neglected Pikachu for 15-20 episodes straight but for it to come out of nowhere and the placement of it made it feel odd. Even during that initial match, Pikachu seemed fine but after that, he suddenly starts pouting? Just one day of being benched and there's sudden anger? Wonder why he never had a seizure in similar scenarios before, considering how much attention Ash gave to other Pokemon over Pikachu often. If anything, Riolu was the one persisting for more training over and over, so it's not like Ash could say no especially given its nature. The entire 'jealousy' stuff was a plot tool for what was essentially Pikachu Runs Away Exciting Adventure 2.0. I'll need to know what Ash said since I didn't catch most of it, but if Ash said anything OOC to Pikachu initially, then it's just another dent to this episode (him being one track minded has always been in character for him though).

Some positives to this episode include those Episode 1 flashbacks though they kind of make Pikachu's jealousy all the more jarring, because he didn't bother to take into consideration the bond they've shared, I wouldn't really call it character development since it was always a part of Ash and Pikachu. Even then, that moment and Ash/Pikachu bonding came at the end and the episode ended soon, most of the episode was about the entire journey itself which was bland. Honestly, they should just leave all Ash/Pikachu bonding episodes to Aya Matsui, she handles them the best (SM020, anyone?).

Surge's Assistant appearing is a plus point.
Delia with loose hair is a plus point.
No reserves is a negative point.
No Kangaskhan is a negative point.
Yeah, they tried to recreate the Episode 20 from Sun & Moon but failed miserably. All the running back to Pallet Town are pretty much meaningless like the one after Ash pull it through the Ultra Ruins after Tapi Koko transported them by accidentally. Leaving his whole Pokemon to search him across the whole Alola only to be ended back where it started from the Ultra World, meaningless just meaningless.

Overall rating: D+
 
The most calmest person here
Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
24
Reaction score
113
This ended up being quite an emotional episode, I'm glad I waited to see it before judging the episode simply based on the summary and preview (which made it come off as being mostly comedic) of course I need to wait for subtitles to know exactly what was being said in it.

Mr. Mime trying different ways to hitchhike was pretty funny, that lullaby moment was cute, I liked seeing Gou use his Pokémon to help train Ash's Riolu and Ash is a good friend giving his bed to Gou, Ash knows how to treat guest correctly (plus baby Sobble neds to sleep in a bed).
 
ロケット団よ永遠
Joined
Jan 2, 2003
Messages
11,082
Reaction score
2,878
The worst part of this complete disaster of an episode was how completely out-of-character Satoshi was throughout the whole thing. I mean, not noticing that something's up with his partner Pokémon, even after it electrocutes him? Not being even the tiniest bit bothered when Pikachu decides to sleep in his mom's room instead of coming to his room? No short little scenes of Satoshi frantically searching for his Pokémon in the second half of the episode? No tears of relief or joy when he's finally reunited with his Pokémon? Ugh.

I just don't understand how someone can do such a terrible job of writing this show's protagonist after all these years.
 
Shiny hunter
Joined
Jul 11, 2006
Messages
342
Reaction score
898
The worst part of this complete disaster of an episode was how completely out-of-character Satoshi was throughout the whole thing. I mean, not noticing that something's up with his partner Pokémon, even after it electrocutes him? Not being even the tiniest bit bothered when Pikachu decides to sleep in his mom's room instead of coming to his room? No short little scenes of Satoshi frantically searching for his Pokémon in the second half of the episode? No tears of relief or joy when he's finally reunited with his Pokémon? Ugh.

I just don't understand how someone can do such a terrible job of writing this show's protagonist after all these years.
Somebody came to the ill-informed conclusion that assigning the "Ash and Pikachu bonding episode" to one of the series' newest writers was a good idea.
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 12, 2014
Messages
2,674
Reaction score
3,263
Somebody came to the ill-informed conclusion that assigning the "Ash and Pikachu bonding episode" to one of the series' newest writers was a good idea.
tbh, it doesn't matter if its given to one of the newest writers or not. However, it seems this writer hasn't seen any Pokemon series before by the looks of things.
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 2, 2016
Messages
1,476
Reaction score
2,745
tbh, it doesn't matter if its given to one of the newest writers or not. However, it seems this writer hasn't seen any Pokemon series before by the looks of things.
Worst part is as I previously mentioned before, this is Reiko Yoshida we’re taking about. Same scriptwriter for A Silent Voice too.
 
Last edited:
Shiny hunter
Joined
Jul 11, 2006
Messages
342
Reaction score
898
Worst part is as I previously mentioned before, this is Reiko Yoshida we’re taking about. Same scriptwriter for A Silent Voice too.

Maybe the writing staff just didn’t tell her about how these type of bonding episodes could work out and she just had to go with it.
It was competently written, had actual depth and was, aside from the key flaw, a mostly good viewing experience, it's just she wrote it about Ach and Pokachu instead of Ash and Pikachu.
 
Making a Splash
Joined
Dec 13, 2017
Messages
17,142
Reaction score
36,321
Am I the only or someone is there thinking that Ash might battle Surge
We got that kind of hints in episode 18, so I think it's very much possible. Especially with the recent promise of more old characters returning.
 
Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2020
Messages
162
Reaction score
776
Koharu actually referenced the whole jealousy thing that happened with Yamper last episode, so this episode having a plot that's very similar to the previous episode's plot is something that's perfectly intentional on the staff/writers' part. On one hand, I think it would've been ridiculous if absolutely no one acknowledged this similarity in events between two consecutive episodes, so it's nice that at least Koharu noticed it and pointed it out. On the other hand, Koharu calling out the writers for reusing the same conflict twice in a row kinda makes it feel even more ridiculous that this episode's conflict even happened in the first place.

The main source of the conflict came from Riolu hogging too much training time, preventing Ash from training Pikachu. This was fine in and of itself, but considering the strong bond that already exists between Ash and Pikachu, the conflict should've been resolved much, much sooner than how it happened in this episode. Pikachu getting all grumpy from Ash focusing on Riolu was a bit iffy, but still kinda understandable. Ash was investing all of his time and effort into training a relatively-recent newcomer on his team to the point that he was basically ignoring Pikachu, which wasn't exactly Ash's fault moreso that Riolu was insisting that Ash trained it until it hit its limits. Ash even tried to train Pikachu after Riolu's training was 100% completed (though it already fell asleep by then), so you can tell that he wasn't intentionally trying to sideline Pikachu. However, Ash not noticing Pikachu's discontent until after it ran away pushed this episode's conflict from iffy to downright stupid. The rest of the plot was actually kinda fine, but again, Ash should've noticed the issue and tried to solve it a lot sooner before the entire thing escalated into Pikachu running away.

Main plot aside, there's lots of small details that I enjoyed in this episode. Delia screentime is very much appreciated, and while I don't like the idea of Mimey being a permanent member of Ash's team in this series, Mimey screentime is nice too. We also see one of the dudes from the Vermillion Gym returning to battle Ash as part of the World Championships; if he's in Super rank, is it safe to assume that Visquez is also at least in Super Rank by now? Sobble and Galarian Farfetch'd are still hanging around, so that's nice.

By the way, minor nitpick, but I'm not a huge fan of how inconsistently Psychic is utilized in this series. Pikachu fell into a river and might possibly drown? Better jump into the river and try to save Pikachu with my bare hands, don't see any better way to do this. A Spearow stole Pikachu's berry? P S Y C H I C
 
Top