One further thing on which I must remark is how redundant Team Rocket was in the first three arcs; it was annoying to have them become so formulaic. Basically, it was wear crummy disguises and still not get recognized, catch Pikachu or some other Pokemon, recite motto, and try to make an escape in a mecha or hot air balloon.
Team Rocket needed new juice a long time ago, and they were given that in Unova, but by completely abandoning their characterization. They went from comic relief, even though they hadn't been funny in eons, to "badass" villains that had little relevance.
It really would be good to have a happy medium. Actual character development mixed with actual villainy, while still having some comic relief sequences. Ignoring them completely is a stupid idea, and that's what they ended up doing. The anime just isn't fun to watch if there isn't this medium, yet it also isn't fun to watch if every episode follows the same formula.
Of course, they seem to have been written out of the plot. I'm still curious what direction the anime is going to go in...