| The Ole' Berate and Switch!
The Ole' Berate and Switch! (Japanese: ロケット団解散！？それぞれの道！ Rocket-dan Dissolution!? Respective Roads!) is the 176th episode of the Advanced Generation series, and the 450th episode of the Pokémon anime. It first aired in Japan on May 11, 2006 and in the United States on December 4, 2006.
|Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details.|
Team Rocket decides to go their separate ways after yet another foiled Pikachu kidnap attempt. Elsewhere, our heroes come across a one-day Pokémon Battle Tournament secretly run by Butch and Cassidy, who are having their own problems getting along. Ash signs up, unaware that while he's battling, Cassidy is preparing to swipe the competitors' Pokémon! Cassidy runs into Jessie and James, and decides to make James her new team. As for Jessie, she fast-talks her way into a partnership with Butch.
Max has spotted the villains at work, however, and as Ash is celebrating a victory, he runs to tell everyone what's really happening. Our heroes go to rescue the Poké Balls and encounter Cassidy and James, James unsuccessfully trying to pretend that he's Butch. Corphish cools off Cassidy's Houndour and Team Rocket's scam is revealed to the tournament competitors, leading to a showdown with Team Rocket minions.
Jessie and Butch try to make a stealthy getaway, but Ash spots them and Pikachu puts a stop to their thievery. Meanwhile, Meowth is trying to steal a few Poké Balls for himself when it bumps into Jessie and James. They remember the good times they had together, and decide to reunite once more. So when Ash sends them blasting off, they blast off as friends—at least for now! The other Trainers are reunited with their Poké Balls, and now it's time for our heroes to head for the Pewter Gym.
Team Rocket have just nabbed Pikachu and are running in hot pursuit. Eventually, they reach a fork, and while James frantically chooses the correct path, Jessie and Meowth failed to notice Pikachu jimming the lock open, freeing himself. After being blasted off by Pikachu's Thunderbolt, the trio gets into an argument. They then come to an agreement and decide to go their separate ways.
Meanwhile, Ash and his friends are heading for Pewter City. As they pass through Sable City, they notice a one-day only Pokémon Tournament being held in the town. Thinking about his upcoming battle with Pyramid King Brandon, Ash decides to enter the tournament. However, what they don't know is that the tournament is a plan concocted by Butch and Cassidy to steal Pokémon. While Butch convinces the Trainers to sign up, Cassidy is disguised as Nurse Joy.
Ash's first battle is against a Pokémon Trainer named Howie. Ash sends out his Corphish to battle Howie's Pinsir. Howie has Pinsir start off with a Vice Grip, but Corphish quickly counters the attack. Ash tells Corphish to use Crabhammer, but Howie has Pinsir counter with Guillotine. Outside the arena, Jessie, James and Meowth enter the building. Jessie notices the tournament is happening and decides to steal the Pokémon. James and Mime Jr. come across the building and get the same reaction Jessie had. Meowth also comes up, and decides to see what it's about, not interested in stealing Pokémon.
Back inside the arena, Pinsir knocks Corphish hard with Seismic Toss, and is about to administer the finishing blow with Guillotine, but Ash tells Corphish to use Harden and a Crabhammer to finish it off. This move allows Ash and Corphish to win the first battle.
Meanwhile, James and Mime Jr. are wandering around the arena. They encounter Jessie, and both of them look away from each other in disgust. Later, they meet up with Cassidy, who is still dressed up as Nurse Joy. She tells the Rocket trio about the plan she and Butch have. She also reveals that she and Butch have been invited to surprise parties for Giovanni and Dr. Namba. Cassidy convinces James to help her out with the plan.
Continuing with the battles, Ash and Corphish face off against another Trainer and his Marowak. Corphish is about to hit Marowak with Crabhammer, but Marowak counters with its thick bone. Marowak uses Bonemerang. Corphish ducks, but the attack comes back and hits the Pokémon.
In one of the hallways of the arena, Butch is busy carrying a bag full of stolen Poké Balls until he encounters Jessie. Jessie then notices the Poké Ball haul Cassidy told her about and starts to sweet-talk Butch.
Back with the battles, Ash has Corphish use Vice Grip, but Marowak counters and is about to nail Corphish with Bone Club. Corphish counters and is about to use Crabhammer.
While in the hallways of the arena, a sad Meowth is thinking about Jessie and James and how much he misses them. He finds a bag of biscuits lying on the ground. He then begins to reminisce about all the times he, Jessie and James had a single bite of food and how they would always split the food into three pieces, whether it was bread, a hunk of cheese, one and a half crackers and even a rice cake.
Meanwhile, Munchlax has run off after one of the battles. Max gets Munchlax under control and peeks into the room where Cassidy and Butch kept the stolen Poké Balls. James and Cassidy are putting the Poké Balls in several boxes. Max then realizes Team Rocket's evil plan, and is shocked to discover James's alignment with Butch and Cassidy. Max heads back to the stadium to tell Ash.
Back with the battles, Corphish has just knocked out Marowak with Crabhammer. Ash and Corphish are celebrating another victory until Max interrupts them. He tells them about Team Rocket's evil plan to steal the Trainers' Poké Balls. Ash and his friends then head to the room to confront James and Cassidy. While confronting James and Cassidy, James and Cassidy say the Team Rocket motto, but Cassidy goofs up the finishing line. Then, Cassidy calls out her Houndour. Ash tells Corphish to use Bubble Beam and follow it up with Vice Grip. Before Corphish can hit Houndour, the Dark Pokémon uses Flamethrower. Corphish slams into one of the boxes where Team Rocket has kept the stolen Poké Balls. Tons of Poké Balls spill out of the boxes and flood the floors of the stadium.
Ash tells the Trainers about what Team Rocket is up to and tells them to get their Poké Balls back. The tournament officials tear off their disguises, revealing themselves to be a horde of Team Rocket Grunts. The Rocket Grunts bring their Pokémon forth, as do the other Trainers, not willing to give up their Pokémon without a fight.
Ash and the other Trainers are furious with Team Rocket wanting to steal the memories they've stored in the Poké Balls and Ash has Pikachu use Thunderbolt. As the battle continues, Jessie and Butch are about to leave with a box full of stolen Poké Balls, but they are noticed by Ash, who has Swellow tackle them. After being caught, Jessie and Butch recite the motto, but Butch goofs it up. Butch, after being annoyed by Ash calling him "Paunch", sends out Raticate. Pikachu uses Thunderbolt on Jessie, Butch and Raticate, sending them flying.
Elsewhere in the arena, Meowth is collecting some Poké Balls. James and Mime Jr. and Jessie are doing the same. When all three Rockets grab the same Poké Ball, another argument ensues, but Meowth stops the argument by showing them the biscuit he found earlier. This reminds Jessie and James of their friendship. All three Rockets are about to split the biscuit apart. Before they could eat it, a Trainer with his Rhydon sends Jessie, James and Meowth flying. After this happens, the Rocket Grunts flee the building.
Back inside, Ash and his friends are cleaning up the mess of Poké Balls, until they notice Cassidy and Butch escaping with the box. As they chase Cassidy and Butch, the Rocket Duo falls into a hole. They get out and continue to run. Before they can board their helicopter, they fall into another hole, along with the helicopter. Ash tells Pikachu to use Thunderbolt and Cassidy and Butch are sent flying.
Jessie, James and Meowth are floating in their Meowth Balloon, carrying shovels. It turns out they were the ones who dug up the holes which almost stopped Cassidy and Butch. Jessie, James and Meowth, after reciting their motto, are about to make their getaway with the Poké Balls, until Corphish pops open a hole with its Bubble Beam attack, sending Team Rocket blasting off again.
Back at the stadium, Ash and his friends watch as the Trainers reclaim their Poké Balls. While in the woods, Jessie, James and Meowth are about to share a biscuit in a campfire. Jessie gets the biggest piece. This angers her two friends, and they fight over the size of the biscuit.
- May and Max meet Butch and Cassidy for the first time.
- Team Rocket break up, and Jessie and James temporarily join with Butch and Cassidy, respectively.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
- Dr. Namba (on the phone)
- Professor Oak (flashback)
- Team Rocket Grunts
- Pokémon Trainers
- Pikachu (Ash's)
- Meowth (Team Rocket)
- Wobbuffet (Jessie's)
- Mime Jr. (James's)
- Swellow (Ash's)
- Corphish (Ash's)
- Torchic (May's; flashback)
- Munchlax (May's)
- Raticate (Cassidy's)
- Houndour (Cassidy's)
- Pinsir (Howie's)
- Marowak (Oriba's)
- Zubat (Team Rocket Grunt's)
- Venomoth (Team Rocket Grunt's)
- Doduo (Team Rocket Grunt's)
- Skarmory (Team Rocket Grunt's)
- Pidgeotto (Trainer's)
- Ponyta (Trainer's)
- Rhydon (Trainer's)
- Ledian (Trainer's)
- Hitmontop (Trainer's)
- This episode marks the return of Ikue Ohtani from maternity leave.
- Pokémon Symphonic Medley, ニャースのうた Meowth's Song and 前向きロケット団！ Face Forward Team Rocket! are used as background music.
- This is a rare instance of an episode beginning with Team Rocket stealing Pikachu. It is also one of the few instances in which such an act is not shown in full.
- This episode is unique because there were a total of three different Team Rocket mottos recited (by Jessie and Butch, then by Cassidy and James, and finally by the usual trio at the end), as well as three different blast-offs (by the trio at the beginning of the episode, then by Cassidy and Butch, and finally by the trio again at the end).
- This is the second time Ash and his friends lead a horde of Pokémon Trainers in a counterattack against Team Rocket's plans. The first time was in Battle Aboard the St. Anne.
- The title is based on the phrase "bait and switch".
- Two later episodes, Noodles! Roamin' Off! and The Path That Leads to Goodbye!, share a similar plotline.
- The dub title has a similar name to a future episode.
- At the beginning, when Pikachu escapes from Team Rocket's cage, a split-second before he lands on the ground, his shadow appears in midair.
- After Cassidy takes James away to work with her, Jessie is left standing alone with a fire extinguisher that was never in the hallway before.
- In the dub, Max seems to know about Butch and Cassidy despite having never met them before.
In other languages
|Danish||Et godt gammelt fup-nummer!|
|Dutch||De Goede Oude Wisseltruc|
|German||Einmal ein Team - Immer ein Team!|
|Italian||Cambio di alleanze|
|Korean||로켓단 해체?! 각자의 길!|
|Brazilian Portuguese||O grande assalto|
|Russian||Команда Р разделилась|
|Spanish||Latin America||El mismo viejo equipo.|
|Spain||Reproches e intercambios|
|Swedish||Ut med språket!|
|This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.|