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"To Catch a Pokémon Smuggler!" Review Thread

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  #1    
Old April 5th, 2014 (7:50 AM). Edited April 12th, 2014 by Wobbu.
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    To Catch a Pokémon Smuggler!



    Synopsis
    A Pokémon smuggler is trapping wild Scatterbug with hopes of profiting from a complete set of Vivillon. When Ash and friends intervene, Clemont's Chespin finds itself in the hands of the smuggler. Can Chespin and the smuggled Pokémon be saved?


    Story
    The episode begins with Ash and friends silently walking down a road in the middle of an isolated valley on their way to Cyllage City. Suddenly Pikachu picks up a faint sound and reacts by twitching his ears. Ash sees Pikachu's ears and listens for the sound but nobody except Pikachu can hear it. After a few seconds of listening, Ash's stomach growls and everyone assumes that it was Ash's stomach that produced the sound. Serena starts to hear a different sound and it becomes clear that Ash's stomach did not produce the sound that Pikachu heard. A few yards ahead of the group, a dust cloud forms on the road at the bottom of a slope. A man, accompanied by a Diggersby, driving a car rushes up the slope and into the group's field of vision. Because the man is driving so fast and without control, Ash and friends scatter off the road to avoid being hit. The man drives into the distance and soon Officer Jenny rushes over the slope on her motorbike, driving right between Ash and friends. Clemont assumes that the man who just drove by is likely to be a wanted criminal. Ash proposes that they check it out.
    With Jenny pursuing him, the man driving the car veers off the road and tells his Diggersby to attack Officer Jenny with Mud Shot. Officer Jenny follows the driver and manages to avoid the barrage of mud but one of the projectiles hits a tree, which falls down and blocks Officer Jenny's path, forcing her to stop while the man drives away. While driving back onto the road, the man hits a bump and knocks one of his cages off the back of his vehicle. The man is upset because that was his most valuable cargo, but Officer Jenny was catching up at a fast enough rate to prevent him from turning around. Ash and friends have also been trying to chase after the man but Clemont runs out of breath and falls to the ground. Ash and the others stop to make sure Clemont is fine. While on the ground, Clemont notices a Pokémon coming out of a nearby cage. The Pokémon is a Scatterbug. Ash scans Scatterbug with his Pokédex and Scatterbug collapses soon after. Serena looks up the location of the nearest Pokémon Center and she leads the way. Meanwhile, Officer Jenny finds herself in a forest, where the man is nowhere to be found.
    At the Pokémon Center, Nurse Joy notices that the Scatterbug didn't come from around the area. Nurse Joy displays six different patterns of Vivillon on an overhead screen and says that their pattern depends on where the Vivillon originate from. She also mentions that Scatterbug have noticeable differences. Ash is asked where he got the Scatterbug from but he is lassoed by Officer Jenny before he is given the chance to respond. Officer Jenny pulls Ash closer and demands that Ash confess to assisting the man from earlier. Officer Jenny reveals that the man is named Dolan, a Pokémon smuggler. Ash and the others point out their innocence and Officer Jenny loosens the rope and apologizes. After that incident, Scatterbug is carted back to the group with full health. A moment later, Nurse Joy discusses Dolan with Ash and friends. Dolan specializes in Vivillon. He traps as many Scatterbug as he spots his eyes on. During the discussion, Scatterbug becomes restless and evolves into Spewpa. Ash scans Spewpa with his Pokédex. Bonnie is excited because she has never witnessed evolution before. After explaining the process of evolution to Bonnie, Clemont notices something shiny hidden within Spewpa's fur. A closer inspection reveals that it's a tracking device.
    Spewpa wants to help rescue its friends who are trapped by Dolan. Serena comes up with a plan. They will use the tracking device as bait in order to attract Dolan. Once they find Dolan, they will follow him back to his hideout. Officer Jenny asks if it's possible and Clemont shows off a new invention. The device can memorize the tracking device's radio waves and pinpoint its location. Bonnie is worried that Dolan will think something isn't right due to Scatterbug's evolution. Officer Jenny thinks that Dolan won't suspect a thing if the tracking device is still attached. Serena is worried that Spewpa will be injured during the process, however. Ash volunteers as bait but he is too big. They try Dedenne next but it is too small, so Chespin becomes bait due to its congruence with Spewpa. Serena creates a Spewpa disguise for Chespin.
    Back near the road where the cage is, Ash and friends silently wait in bushes while Chespin waits in the cage. Dolan soon arrives in his car and picks up the cage. He notices that this Spewpa looks a little different from the other Spewpa but he believes that it will lead to a more valuable Vivillon. Dolan drives away and Clemont uses his invention to follow him. Everything goes according to plan until Clemont and the others reach the forest. Clemont's device malfunctions and blows up. Officer Jenny leaves on her motorbike and tells the others to not be reckless. Ash sends out Fletchling and tells it to look for Dolan's car. After a few seconds of flying, Fletchling sees Dolan driving up a mountain nearby. Fletchling meets with the others and they follow Fletching up the mountain. When everyone gets near the hideout, Ash returns his Fletchling. Officer Jenny is not present. Ash sends out Froakie and has it scout the hideout. Froakie spots a trapped collection of Spewpa and gives a signal to Ash. Ash and the others try to sneak into the hideout but Pikachu, Serena, Clemont, Bonnie, and Dedenne are caught in a net. Dolan soon appears, expecting Ash and friends, and shows Chespin in the cage. During Dolan's travel back to the hideout, Chespin's disguise was ruined from the bumps. Dolan sends out his Diggersby and Ash scans it with his Pokédex. Ash accepts the battle by using Froakie. Biggersby uses Mud Shot but Froakie dodges. Froakie uses Bubble but Diggersby blocks with its ears. Diggersby uses Dig and lands a hit on Froakie. While Froakie hurdles through the air, Diggersby attacks with Double Slap. Froakie blocks with its arms and sustains the attack. Diggersby uses Hammer Arm after both have grounded. Froakie counters with Water PUlse but misses, causing Hammer Arm to land. Froakie has taken a lot of damage and Ash protects Froakie by holding it. Diggersby attacks with another Hammer Arm but Spewpa runs up and tackles it. Diggersby uses Double Slap but Spewpa uses Protect. Spewpa uses String Shot and wraps Diggersby in string. Diggersby easily breaks free. Spewpa becomes restless and evolves into Vivillon, with a pattern different than Viola's Vivillon (as pointed out by Bonnie). Dolan is excited about Vivillon's value, which infuriates Ash. Diggersby attacks with Mud Shot but Vivillon protects itself with Safeguard. Vivillon counterattacks with Stun Spore which knocks out Diggersby.
    Dolan threatens to capture Vivillon with a net but Officer Jenny shows up and catches Dolan's arm with a rope. Dolan resists so Vivillon uses its scales to calm him down. Ash frees his friends from the net. Later, while the sun is setting, all the Spewpa are shown freed and gathered outside of the hideout. The Spewpa all evolve simultaneously and fly off into the sunset, with Ash and friends waving them goodbye.

    Discussion
    What do you think about the plot?
    How serious would you consider Dolan's plan?
    How did Dolan not notice that Scatterbug was removed from the crate?
    Do you think someone should have caught the main Vivillon?
    Has Vivillon collecting gone too far?


    To Catch a Pokémon Smuggler!
    USA Broadcast: April 5, 2014

    Capture the Pokémon Buyer! The Kofuurai Impersonation Plan!!
    Japanese Broadcast:January 9, 2014



















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      #2    
    Old April 5th, 2014 (4:48 PM).
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    Aquacorde Aquacorde is offline
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      This was an interesting episode imo. Like not totally in an in-universe way but in a thinking-about-it way. It's obviously about the mass trading of Vivillon that goes on in the games, but I kind of wonder how long they had this one planned for. Like, did the writers base it off what the game devs obviously wanted people to do with the Vivillon, or did they base it off of behaviour they observed? I mean, not that it matters either way because it's basically the same thing, but it would be interesting if it were the latter. Means they pay attention to us haha.

      Dolan's basically just like all the other Pokémon poachers we've seen- powerful enough to be a threat, collecting a bunch of the same Pokémon, etc. Only real difference is that he's selling them over the internet for each one's unique qualities rather than the Pokémon's species. I mean he's obviously going to be taken out by Team Twerp but he at least had a fairly unique plan and style. Still not that interesting but hey.

      I'm kind of glad that nobody caught a Vivillon tbh. Ash doesn't need the local bug type; it's already been showcased and he's had enough of that experience. The only other person who might have got it would be Serena, but that might start making people equate her to May and coming up unfavourably. Besides, she doesn't have enough of a developed bond with Fennekin to be getting another Pokémon yet.
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        #3    
      Old April 5th, 2014 (4:50 PM).
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        This episode was pretty awesome. I like how everyone made some bright ideas to catch the smuggler, this new series really made all the characters there likable. Pokemon #666 Vivillion is purdy. When all the Spewpa evolved and the Vivillion's fly away, it reminded me of the Butterfree's for some reason lol.

        Note: Did Clemont just invented the Dragon Radar? xD
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        Old April 5th, 2014 (5:26 PM).
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          My guess is that this episode was used to promote and display the game developers' intentions of collecting Vivillon. I think this episode was planned before Vivillon collecting became a trend. XY's been heavily promoting new features and gimmicks from the games so far. There have been two episodes with a focus on Mega Evolution, a Furfrou trimming episode, a Rhyhorn riding episode, and an episode about Vivillon's patterns. That's half of the season so far.

          Dolan's strategy wasn't actually that bad. He didn't have any of the technology that J had but he had a much simpler and easier plan. Scatterbug are easy to catch and evolve, making profits from Vivillon easy to come by.

          The only person deserving of the purple Vivillon in my opinion is Ash. They formed a strong bond during the battle against Diggersby, enough to evolve Spewpa. The only reason why I'm glad that Ash didn't catch Vivillon was because I doubt he'd ever use it. He already has Fletchling as a reliable, more powerful, aerial Pokémon.

          I'm upset that Ash was the focus rather than Clemont. Clemont found Scatterbug in the first place and a lot of moments in this episode could've easily applied to Clemont. For example, Clemont could've came up with the plan for finding Dolan, he could've battled Diggersby at the hideout. Action hero Clemont is something that is needed more often, especially since his position of character hardly steps into that boundary.
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          Old April 6th, 2014 (6:48 AM).
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            Is it just me, or is the dubbed title appears to be a reference to an old reality show To Catch a Predator? Also, I can't take anyone named "Dolan" seriously, as I keep getting reminded of those Dolan comics when I should be trying to get Wario vibes from this smuggler's appearance. Jenny's dialogue needs a bit of improvement, because saying "they're bad people" sounds unprofessional for officers in general, especially when they're having a conversation with children.


            Regardless, smugglers collecting certain Pokémon species based on unique patterns is a neat idea that should've been thought about since Gen III with Spinda, which has way more patterns than Vivillon.
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              #6    
            Old April 6th, 2014 (9:12 AM).
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            It was nice to see a poacher plot that was slightly different than the rest. I mean, this one wasn't as bad because as far as we know the Scatterbug and Spewpa weren't being hurt and the people buying them could have just been honest collectors, we've seen Pokemon collectors in the anime before and they weren't labeled as criminals or anything iirc.

            I wish the plot had Serena as the hero rather than Ash. She hasn't had barely any development so far and she has barely battled, plus she could have caught Vivillon, or at least have had Fennekin battling Dolan for some battle experience.
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            Old April 7th, 2014 (8:42 PM).
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            Wobbu Wobbu is offline
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              Quote:
              Originally Posted by Naya Rivera View Post
              I wish the plot had Serena as the hero rather than Ash. She hasn't had barely any development so far and she has barely battled, plus she could have caught Vivillon, or at least have had Fennekin battling Dolan for some battle experience.
              Yeah, it's been a while since Serena has had a significant role in an episode. I think the only two things she did that had any importance were finding the Pokémon Center and coming up with the plan for fining Dolan's hideout. Besides that, there were a lot of missed opportunities like you mentioned. Either way, it would've been nice for Ash to lay low for at least one episode.
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              Old May 16th, 2015 (10:10 PM).
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                - how can they hope to catch up running after vehicles moving at full speed?
                - oh, the chase was just a plot-tool. Like Tobias.
                - colour-variants can have so many sources I wonder anyone still bothers.
                - filler filler, filler. stupid, stupid, stupid.
                - still the anti-science (or is it anti-industrialization?) message. Technology even if it works, will blow up. Let's abandon technology, and go back to the age of Black Plague!
                - "You only think of pokemon as making money" - just like Nintendo.
                - butterfree's story in a nuttshell
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