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REVIEW: XY039: Pokémon Summer Camp! Enter the Rival Trio!!

Necrozma

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All I can say is: thank you, Tomioka.

You're finally doing something with Serena.

He did more with her in one episode than the other writers in over forty episodes.
 

ArvAl

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First things first. I generally a little bit disappointed about not having Ash remember his own Charizard from Trevor's Charmander and this is going to be tough if we want to see him with a mega evolution Pokemon.

Secondly, I'm a little bit suprised because lots of running gags display during the show. I don't know how to say this but it's hilarious X)

Third, the scene. Okay so the beginning was quite actually similar with the XY games intro where Prof. Sycamore stands there. Also the ending scene quite good for Serena after being ditched over forty episodes, yeah you know I what I'm talking about.

Last but not least.....hold on a sec, where's Jessie's Lipstick???!!!
 

Sweenix

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This episode was so freaking kawaii! i feel like every character and every episode should stay like this, and we can have this endless slice of life little bundle!!~~~

Oh god, and Serena at the end <3 She's finally realizing she needs a goal, although i hope she remembers her main goal is Mr Ash Ketchum ;)
 

Grabbergirl

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Nice episode! Oh Professor Sycamore looks silly in that outfit. Oh Korrina! It's from episode 34. Don't tell me my Headcannon is wrong! Oh Shauna, Trevor, and Tierno were cool, Shauna made a Pokevision (when will Korrina make one!?). Clemont needs some table manners, ah playing the ol' reaching Richard I see! (Pull it closer Clemont).
 

Alola

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Finally, the Kalos Summer Camp Arc! And what better way to start it than a Professor Sycamore “Welcome to the World of Pokémon.”

That aside, today’s episode was great for several reasons. Now a part of me feels severely unqualified to write such a review since I barely know Japanese, but oh well! Doesn't take a rocket scientist to grasp the gist of things!

Our summer camp this time takes place alongside a beautiful coast, accented with an ocean breeze. This is completely plausible given how the gang are officially in the Coastal Region of Kalos. Not to mention, the layout, scheduling and activities of the camp really make it feel like...a summer camp (the cabins, the cafeteria, the overall campsite)! I didn’t entirely feel that with the one done in DP, so it’s great that the writers improved what they already had there.

Next up, the characters! Professor Sycamore’s summer/beach clothes are hilariously cute. He reminds me of an old grandpa or really energetic dad for some reason. Either way, it’s great to see him out of his usual getup. I was also pleased that he inquired about the gang’s Mega Evolution “research.” Yay for continuity! His staff also have appeared again, both looking refreshed and beach-ready. Team Rocket have returned to their obligatory food roles for such plot occasions, and seem to be kept in check by the head chef as well. Although, I’m not sure if she is intimidating or just overly friendly. You can’t blame TR for their paranoia though, given their history of grouchy bosses. Then the other trainers, yada yada-

TIERNO, TREVOR AND SHAUNA! FINAL-FREAKING-LY!

The Kalos Krew have finally deigned to appear, with both the audience and Ash & Co getting an awesome introduction to the Tierno. True to his word, his battles are full of beats and dancing; clearly evident in his Squirtle. The excitement doesn't stop, with his comical retrieval of Shauna upon seeing Serena being plain silly. Shauna isn’t as genki, hyper-kawaii ♫ as I thought she would be (due to Bonnie perhaps?), but I like her character nonetheless. Trevor appears a bit later, and we can already tell that he will be a Clemont expy but more adorable/adorkable.

The Kalos Krew’s Pokemon were all pretty unique too. Trevor’s Charmander is just blatantly wild and completely different from his trainer (or maybe Trevor has a wild side we don’t know of?). I thought its entrance was funny, as well as its tendencies to unleash frothing flames. Bulbasaur is the groups alpha b****, stealing and enhancing the role from Serena’s Fennekin, while also having the strength to back such personality up. Poor Pikachu and Fennekin; they don't handle rejection well. And did anyone else catch Bulbasaur's faint smile upon eating Serena's Pokepuff? I enjoy little things like that. Then you have Squirtle, who is clearly the sane one of the group if not most docile, with a cute groove quirk and agility in battle that surpasses even Froakies. And all suspicions have been confirmed, as this colorful Kanto group were indeed handed out by none other than Professor Sycamore (well, guess Serena won’t be getting a Kanto Starter…) Yes, yes, yes! This is shaping up magnificently! I cannot wait for this arc!

And last but not least, sweet sweet Serena. This episode really should have focused on her. I mean this is the most that she’s ever done outside her PokeVision episode (which largely contributed to this episode).

First off, we have her actively Dexing Pokémon, something she rarely does as of late. Even before that, Tierno, Trevor and Shauna recognize her from, no not her hometown (say what?), her PokeVision video. And given her expression, this is clearly something she didn’t think much of nor expect a lot viewership from (Girl, you got over 40,000 hits. Give yourself some credit!). In fact, she can’t help but innocently blush at the praise she’s getting for her video, when in reality she only created it to impress a boy (which promptly failed). Yay for continuity, again! Next up along the Serena train are the performance battles on the beach. This time, Fennekin is actually eager to battle (I wonder if it has to do with a certain type advantage…) as is her Trainer. What can go wrong? Well let’s see…not only your strongest elemental move being destroyed by another disadvantaged elemental move, but said disadvantaged move actually continuing to be executed with no hindrance whatsoever. A nimble dodge by Fennekin leaves both her and her trainer baffled.

“But, Fire type moves are super effective on Grass types…”

Well Serena dear, it’s called training. Basically, Shauna has been doing everything Serena has at this point and more. If Serena would actively battle and train her Pokémon, then this little shortcoming wouldn’t have happened. I’m glad she got a wake-up call. And finally, after the day’s whirling events, Serena gets a moment alone with her beloved fox kitten. Given all of her friends explicit dreams and their active work in pursuing them, everyone else’s battle prowess and the introduction of a girl who does what she does but even better (we’ve yet to see Shauna bake though), Serena rightfully wonders “What exactly am I doing? What is my goal?” For the first time in a long time, this subject is touched upon again. And this scene is indeed very touching. So much so, I actually feel bad for her. She’s very well rounded, but just hasn’t found her niche yet. And the fact that her Fennekin is there to support her regardless really iced the cake on such a heartfelt scene.

Overall, a 9.8/10.

Pros
+Tierno, Trevor and Shauna
+Serena Character Development
+Kanto and Kalos Starters
+Seaside Summer Camp scenery
+HIP HOP SQUIRTLE

Cons
-The battles could have been longer, with at least someone getting KOed.
 
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Sakuraa

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I thought this was a great episode and a nice start to the arc.

First off, Sycamore's introduction at the beginning of the episode was nice to see. I also like how these guys are given teams, but I wonder how they choose them. I mean Ash's group just so happens to be Team Froakie while Tierno's crew is Team Squirtle? Of course, maybe it's because Sycamore knows what Pokémon they have. I'm guessing each person just tells them one Pokémon they have and that becomes their team name.

Wow, that had to be a weak-ass Conkeldurr to get K.O.ed by one attack from a Squirtle. At the same time, I love how Tierno incorporates dancing into his battles. It was so cute seeing Squirtle mimic him as they danced.

Damn, Tierno is fast. I can't believe he just ran over and grabbed Shauna like that! Though at the same time...that was cute. Anyway, nice to see that they recognized Serena from her Pokevision video. Shauna's video was nice. Pretty simplistic, but nice. Also Bulbasaur...wow. And I thought Fennekin was rather snobby. Oh gosh Chespin. Please stop. Please don't become another Pokeball popout guy. At least he didn't steal everyone's food today.

And now we have Trevor and Charmander. Charmander seems pretty cool, unlike Trevor who seems to share Clemont's athleticism or lack thereof. Damn! What's with his Charmander?! Why'd he try to bite Pikachu and Fennekin? So it seems like Trevor takes pics of Pokémon in addition to wanting to see them all.

I wish the battles would have been longer, but whatever. Fennekin got some battle experience and Serena sees that she needs more training. And I loved Squirtle's dancing. Seriously. He and Tierno are so in sync. Speaking of which I like how all of the Pokémon-trainer relationships between the groups seem to match. Tierno and Squirtle seem pretty similar like Ash and Froakie. Serena and Fennekin share interests like Shauna and Bulbsaur, with the Pokémon being more snobby than the trainer. And Clemont and Trevor are a bit more reserved while their starters are pretty wild. I like that. I think this arc will be really interesting.

And lastly, I like how we had the scene of Serena at the end. I hope this is the kickstart to some real development with her. Really nice overall. 9.9/10.
 
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Foxy Vee

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It's one of the cutest episodes I seen in so long (especially Fokko!) - Jessie just looked so weird without lipstick - just wished those battles where a lot longer. 10/10 for me!
 

Crysta Blade

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Here he is, fashion disaster Sycamore. With the belt from his usual clothes. Wait a sec...are those crocs!? Augustine, no! The man needs an intervention at this point...

Serena's hair tie is huge in the cabin scene.

Between the professor's 'marvelous!' and Tierno's 'alright!', we're getting a fair bit of gratuitous English today.

Hmm, Tierno's from Santalune City here? Interesting.

Pfft, love how casually Tierno just runs over, grabs Shauna and drags her to Ash, while the kids Shauna was talking to look on dumbstruck. It's great.

Gah, Tierno and Squirtle are so darn cute! Look at 'em dance. Aww at Tierno lifting Squirtle onto his shoulder. Tierno would do well as a Co-ordinator, wouldn't he?

So Serena's PokéVision video went viral on the Pokémon world's equivalent of Youtube, huh?

Hey, they brought over the nicknames from the games! 'Trovacchi' and 'Trovataro'.

The Kanto starters certainly have a bit of personality: Bulbasaur being standoffish to anyone who isn't Shauna, Charmander likes to fight and that spills over into how it plays, and Squirtle's got those dance moves down.

D'aww, Tierno finds Serena getting all embarassed cute.

More cuteness with Trevor being all 'is that a Pikachu?' and taking a photo.

Oh yeah, there were battles, too. Can you see how much I like the human characters and their interactions?

Another interesting tidbit in Shauna wanting to be a Pokémon Performer.

Glad to see that things have got Serena thinking about the whole lack-of-dream thing. There's nothing wrong with just being a Trainer with no major purpose in mind (like gameverse Shauna essentially travelling for fun), but it's not exactly the most interesting thing to watch, you know? Although, since Serena's starting to show signs here of being bothered by a lack of goal? That is the start of something interesting. Let's hope something comes of this.

I think I've rambled on enough to pretty much say I really like this episode.
 

Gard81

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Wow, I honestly wouldn't have recognized it was Jessie if she wasn't accompanied by James and Meowth. Has she ever gone one episode without lipstick before? And James looks pretty good with a goatee. Loved the surprising amount of development Serena got here, that was enjoyable.
 

G50

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This episode was pretty good. So far I like Trevor, Tierno, and Shauna's anime personalities, especially Tierno since he is exactly like he was in the games. I love how the starters have very noticible personalities so far. I do wish the battles would have been longer though.
 

Gard81

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In case people are wondering about what Madame Catherine (the lady chef) said about Diantha (like I was), she explained that Diantha also went that same camp when she was young, to which Clemont said that they could be following in her footsteps.
 

Moe

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Really liked this episode, they've been on a really good run of episodes of late so hope that keeps up through this arc.

I didn't find the rivals in the XY games that interesting, but their anime counterparts are really likeable - particularly Trevor, and how well done Tierno's dancing transferred over to battles - something the game didn't even touch.

At this point I'll say I certainly want to see them be ongoing rivals. But maybe the novelty will wear off in a few weeks.

Interesting to have the call back to the Pokevision stuff - it does highlight though how oddly unconnected Ash and his travelling partners always are, not even having the regional communication devices. Obviously it's plot convenience - if they all had phones/communicators then you couldn't do all those 'group gets separated' episodes - but it always seems like they are the only ones out of the loop.

Those Pokemon interactions had amazingly unique personalities for Kanto starters considering how frequently they've appeared. I'm not liking Chespin now frequently popping out of its ball. Is there anyone who actually liked that side of Piplup and Oshawott? I certainly didn't and don't want it infesting XY.

Serena getting a bit of development is the highlight of this episode though - hopefully it opens her eyes to considering her path as a trainer - or even just have the recognition serve to make her want to focus on Pokevision. I think we're at the point now that this is the last real chance to get something good going for her character.

Was that Pokemoney finally making an appearance as the gold coins in Team Rocket's eyes at the end? I wonder if we're close to James breaking out his bottlecap collection?
 

Odinn

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I agree with Sakuraa's assessment. But 2 things are keeping me from rating the episode higher than 9;
- Ash could (and should IMO) have remembered his own Kanto starters. At least his mighty Charizard.
- Since I'm negative about Serena, her speech at the end isn't that genuine enough for myself. (You can check out my concerns about her in 'current thoughs on Serena' thread) I hope she'll prove me wrong and I'll beat my negativeness.

PS: I really liked Shauna's Bulbasaur. Although I didn't get why its bulb got petted by brushing in the Pokevision video. It's not made of furs. Right?
 
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JacobYBM

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Given this episode was written by Tomioka Atsuhiro, who also wrote Best Wishes #116, I'm guessing there wasn't enough room to fit a line from Satoshi in about his own Kantou starters or the line was nixed by Chief Director Yuyama or Series Director Yajima. They could very well still be mentioned in the next three episodes, though.
 

Necrozma

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The only complaint I have regarding this episode are the Team Rocket scenes.

They were too long and completely unnecessary in my opinion. They could have been cut or shortened so the battles at the end wouldn't be as rushed as they were. I mean, the episode practically skipped the conclusion of their battles going straight to them having dinner.

I'd have loved to see Serena actually learn something from Shauna instead of Serena simply saying she learned something from Shauna as well as the conclusion to Trevor vs Clemont battle. But I guess this was nice too.

But overall, this episode was great, one of the best definitely. Once again I have to thank Tomioka for actually doing something with Serena. This episode, the next one and the final ep of this arc are all written by him and given the way this episode ended, I have a strong feeling that this will be a heavily Serena-centered arc that will deal with her lack of direction in general.
 

JacobYBM

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The length of the battles was probably due to a few reasons. There might have been only a small number of drawings allowed for this episode (a weekly long-running series like this usually limits the number of in-between animation drawings to 3,000-4,000 drawings an episode). Without many drawings you can't do much in the way of combat scenes. The lack of drawings might be related to the upcoming Episode #42 or Episode #44. Secondly, the episode had a lot of different things to set up for the rest of the arc.
 

Alola

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Given this episode was written by Tomioka Atsuhiro, who also wrote Best Wishes #116, I'm guessing there wasn't enough room to fit a line from Satoshi in about his own Kantou starters or the line was nixed by Chief Director Yuyama or Series Director Yajima. They could very well still be mentioned in the next three episodes, though.
Wasn't his clear excited expression upon seeing Charmander enough? Why does everyone seem to think that another species sighting automatically warrants a memory/reflection/etc montage to a main characters Pokemon?
 

JacobYBM

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Given this episode was written by Tomioka Atsuhiro, who also wrote Best Wishes #116, I'm guessing there wasn't enough room to fit a line from Satoshi in about his own Kantou starters or the line was nixed by Chief Director Yuyama or Series Director Yajima. They could very well still be mentioned in the next three episodes, though.
Wasn't his clear excited expression upon seeing Charmander enough? Why does everyone seem to think that another species sighting automatically warrants a memory/reflection/etc montage to a main characters Pokemon?
I concur, especially since it is mentioned he is from Masara Town, where these Pokemon are handed out.
 

Johtohfiller

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This is one of those episodes where the character interactions come across great even though I only have a vague understanding of what they're saying. Lots of personality from the Kalos rivals and their Pokemon, I think I'm really going to like them.

I loved how excited Ash and friends were when they came upon the summer camp, so cute.

Serena has a fanclub, hahaha. It's cool how the Pokevision episode ended up being so plot-relevant, I wasn't expecting it to tie into this arc so strongly. Looks like they're setting Serena up for a bigger part in the story, which is great. Summer camps seem to be very momentous for her.

The flashbacks to both Pokevision and the Korrina/Lucario arc were a great touch.

I agree with those who wish the battles were longer, but I did love seeing Tierno's dancing Squirtle in action. Froakie's expression when Squirtle interrupted his Water Pulse was the bee's knees.

Excellent episode, I can't wait to see it subbed. Really looking forward to the rest of this arc.
 
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