| New Places... Familiar Faces!
New Places... Familiar Faces! (Japanese: アララギ研究所！新たなる旅立ち！！ The Araragi Institute! A New Journey!!) is the 109th episode of the Best Wishes series, and the 766th episode of the Pokémon anime. It first aired in Japan on January 17, 2013 and in the United States on April 20, 2013.
|Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details.|
Now that the Unova League has ended, our heroes set their sights on Nuvema Town and Professor Juniper’s lab. En route, they come across a terribly upset girl named Natasha, who’s petrified of crossing a bridge because she’s afraid she made it unsafe by tapping on it! Though Ash attempts to prove the bridge is safe by crossing first, he ultimately has to come back and bring her across with him. Natasha is grateful, and Ash offers her some advice: Being careful is fine, but sometimes you just have to go for it!
Our heroes arrive at the lab, and Natasha shows up shortly afterward, looking for a starter Pokémon. Professor Juniper assures her she’s come to the right place, but again, Natasha’s brain is working overtime as she imagines the most nightmarish scenarios possible! However, with Cilan’s advice, Natasha chooses a cute Tepig. Ash then suggests they have a Tag Battle so she can get used to her new Pokémon!
The two of them team up against Cilan and Iris so Natasha can learn the ropes of being a new Trainer...and the battle is being observed by none other than Team Rocket! The villains are back on the scene with the goal of stealing Pikachu for their Boss, but when that appears unlikely, they decide to steal Natasha’s Tepig instead! Natasha is more nervous and clueless than ever about what to do, until she remembers Ash’s words of encouragement. Determined, Natasha turns over a new leaf, showing real battling spirit! And with the help of Ash’s incredible Unfezant, Tepig is returned unharmed and Team Rocket is sent packing.
Back at the lab, Professor Juniper gets a call from her father, Cedric, who informs them that the White Ruins—an archeological site that may have information about the Legendary Pokémon Reshiram—have been discovered near Icirrus City! Of course our heroes want to go check it out, so, after saying goodbye to Natasha and the professor, they board a ferry bound for Aspertia City. Professor Juniper has advised them to look up a Gym Leader named Cheren who has just opened up a Gym there, and so it’s off to new adventures and guaranteed excitement!
Fresh from the Vertress Conference, Ash and his friends are heading to Nuvema Town to meet with Professor Juniper. On the way, they come across a young girl kneeling in front of a bridge, frantically talking to herself as to whether she should cross the bridge or not. Ash is concerned and asks her what is the matter. The girl says she is worried the bridge will not support her. Iris reassures her everything is going to be alright. Ash volunteers to cross the bridge first to prove it is safe.
Once on the other side, the girl is still worried about the integrity of the bridge. Exasperated, Ash recrosses the bridge and manages to help the girl across the bridge. Before leaving, Ash gives the girl advice. He says it is good to be careful, but there are times when she will just have to go for it. On that note, Ash and the group say farewell to the girl and continue on to Professor Juniper's lab. Above the group, one of Team Rocket's flying cameras can be seen spying on Ash and his friends. It is revealed that Team Rocket will once again resume their plans of capturing Pikachu.
Ash and the group arrive at the lab and are greeted by Professor Juniper. In the lab, Ash is talking to Professor Oak over a video call. Professor Oak congratulates Ash on his performance in the Unova League, although Ash is disappointed that he was only able to finish in the top 8. As Ash is asking on the state of his Pokémon, Muk comes up behind Professor Oak and Body Slams him, effectively ending the call.
Ash is sitting in the lab's lounge, thinking aloud as to what he is going to do next. Cilan and Iris both say they have a lot more work before they realize their dreams and they decide they should continue on their journeys together. They are interrupted by the same frantic girl. She is outside the lab, which she thinks is full of Galvantula waiting to catch and shock her. Just then the lab doors open and the group comes out, surprised to see the girl from the bridge.
In the lab, the girl finally reveals her name is Nanette and she has come to the lab to get her first Pokémon for free. When Professor Juniper confirms this, this sets Nanette on another panic attack. She thinks there must be a catch to getting a Pokémon for free, but the professor quickly assures the girl there is no catch. Professor Juniper then proceeds to show Nanette the three starter Pokémon she can choose from: a Tepig, an Oshawott, and a Snivy. Again, Nanette starts to overthink her choice and all the bad things that could happen, but Iris interrupts her, begging her to stop. Cilan then advises Nanette to choose the lively Tepig because it may balance out Nanette's cautious behavior. Nanette goes along with Cilan's advice and both human and Pokémon seem to be happy with the decision. Afterwards, Ash excitedly asks her for a battle, but Nanette once again is apprehensive about the matter. Ash suggests a tag battle so he can help her.
The tag battle begins between Ash and Nanette against Cilan and Iris. Both sides call out their Pokémon. It is Pikachu and Tepig against Emolga and Stunfisk. Nanette is unsure how she should proceed, so Ash starts things off by having Pikachu use Thunderbolt, hitting Emolga and Stunfisk, although it does no damage to the latter. Nanette decides to follow Ash's lead a little too well, also commanding Tepig to use Thunderbolt, a move Tepig is unable to learn. Ash has Nanette look at her Pokédex instead to see which moves Tepig knows. Looking at it, Nanette finds one and has Tepig use Ember, hitting Stunfisk. Cilan has Stunfisk counter with a super-effective Mud Bomb, hitting Tepig. Emolga uses Discharge hitting everyone on the field, but doing no damage to Stunfisk. Pikachu hits Emolga back with a Quick Attack.
All of a sudden, Team Rocket and one of their machines burst out of the woods. After reciting their motto, Jessie and James call out their two new Pokémon: Frillish and Amoonguss respectively. The two use a combination of Mist and Stun Spore to reduce visibility and paralyze the group's Pokémon. Nanette is able to quickly recall her Tepig, but the others aren't so lucky. Taking advantage of the situation, James has Amoonguss Body Slam Pikachu, knocking him out. Frillish then uses Psychic to start moving the unconscious Pikachu to Team Rocket's machine. Thinking quickly, Ash calls out his Unfezant and she uses Gust to blow away the mist, revealing Team Rocket has almost completed capturing Pikachu.
Meanwhile, Nanette is having another panic attack but then recalls Ash back at the bridge advising her to go for it because she won't know what she can do until she tries. Taking hold of the situation, Nanette calls out Tepig and has it use Ember on Frillish. The Ember causes Frillish's Psychic to stop, releasing Pikachu who quickly regains consciousness and is ready to battle. Not worried, James has Amoonguss use Hidden Power on Pikachu and Unfezant, but they are both able to dodge the attack. While Amoonguss is attacking, Frillish is going for Tepig. Nanette has Tepig use Tackle, but it does nothing to Frillish because she is part Ghost-type. Frillish then catches Tepig and throws it into Team Rocket's machine.
Attempting to cover their escape, Frillish and Amoonguss use Bubble Beam and Hidden Power. However, Unfezant flies in front of the attacks to protect Ash and Nanette. Despite the two attacks, she appears unfazed. Ash has Unfezant use Air Cutter on Amoonguss and Aerial Ace on Frillish, knocking both Pokémon out. Meowth has Team Rocket retreat with the captured Pokémon to their balloon. The scared Tepig can be seen in a glass box under the balloon.
Not giving up, Ash tells Unfezant to chase after the fleeing balloon. Wanted to get even, Pikachu tells Ash it wants to go with Unfezant. Meowth activates the balloon's jets to try to escape, but Pikachu uses a well-aimed Electro Ball to blow up the balloon. Team Rocket blasts off and Tepig is falling toward the ground. However, Unfezant quickly swoops down and catches the Pokémon. Back on the ground, Nanette and Tepig gladly embrace. Feeling confident after all the has happened, Nanette promises she will no longer worry about things and runs off to begin her journey.
Just then, one of Professor Juniper's assistants runs out and says her father, Cedric Juniper, is calling. Inside, Professor Juniper asks her father why he called her. Cedric replies that the White Ruins have recently been discovered near Dragonspiral Tower. The ruins could give him information on the legendary Pokémon Reshiram. The group is excited about the news, so Cedric invites them to come to the White Ruins.
The group is by the cruise ship that will take them to the White Ruins. They are saying farewell to Professor Juniper, who is unable to join them on the trip due to important research which is keeping her at the lab. Right before they leave, Juniper tells Ash that as he'll be docking at Aspertia City he should go and visit the newly-opened Aspertia Gym and its leader Cheren. Ash gets excited at the prospect of battling at a new Gym, and the gang set off on their new journey which they all hope will give them a chance to meet Reshiram.
Meanwhile, at another port, a mysterious young man prepares to set off on his own journey.
- Ash and his friends return to Nuvema Town and meet up with Professor Juniper again.
- The Team Rocket trio returns to Unova with their focus back on their original goal: capturing Pikachu and any other Pokémon they can.
- Jessie and James are revealed to have obtained a Frillish and an Amoonguss, respectively.
- Ash, Iris, and Cilan decide to explore the White Ruins in the hopes of meeting Reshiram.
- Ash learns from Professor Juniper that there is a new Gym in Aspertia City and decides to go there en route to the White Ruins.
- N is introduced.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
- Pikachu (Ash's)
- Meowth (Team Rocket)
- Axew (Iris's)
- Unfezant (Ash's)
- Muk (Ash's; at Oak's Lab)
- Emolga (Iris's)
- Stunfisk (Cilan's)
- Frillish (Jessie's)
- Amoonguss (James's)
- Tepig (starter Pokémon; given to Nanette)
- Snivy (starter Pokémon)
- Oshawott (starter Pokémon)
- Serperior (fantasy)
- Whimsicott (fantasy)
- Alomomola (fantasy)
- Galvantula (×2; fantasy)
- Reshiram (fantasy)
- Professor Oak's Pokémon Live Caster: Swadloon
- Be an Arrow! 2013 replaced Be an Arrow! as the Japanese opening theme
- Sakura Go-Round replaced Look Look☆Here as the Japanese ending theme.
- This is the first episode in the Best Wishes! Season 2: Episode N arc.
- The conclusion of this arc aired in Japan in the same week as this episode aired in the US.
- Team Rocket Forever and Be an Arrow! are used as background music.
- At the end of Dare da?, at the point when the revealed Pokémon normally lets out its own cry, Ash instead shouts "Meowth!", and Meowth runs off the screen, shouting, "my cover's been blown!".
- This episode marks the first time since Memories are Made of Bliss!, 109 episodes prior, when Team Rocket has used their Meowth balloon and blasted off without their rocket packs.
- As of this episode, Team Rocket has recited their original motto at least once during each series of the anime.
- In the English dub, the lines in Team Rocket's original motto have received minor revisions. "To unite all peoples within our nation" has been changed to "to unite the people within our nation", "Team Rocket, blast off at the speed of light" has been changed to "Team Rocket blasts off at the speed of light", and "Jessie! James!" has been changed to "It's Jessie! And James!".
- This episode also marks the return of the running gag which consists of Professor Oak getting smothered by Ash's Muk while talking to Ash through video conference.
- Both the Pokémon Team Rocket caught prior this episode are next to each other in the Pokédex.
- On Pokémon.com, the Brazilian Portuguese dub incorrectly used the European Spanish logo for the season.
- Team Rocket Forever is removed, while Be An Arrow! is replaced with an instrumental version of Rival Destinies.
In other languages
|Dutch||Nieuwe plaatsen... Bekende gezichten!|
|Finnish||Uusia paikkoja, tuttuja kasvoja!|
|Greek||Καινούργια Μέρη... Γνωστά Πρόσωπα!|
|Italian||Luoghi nuovi... Vecchi amici!|
|Korean||주박사 연구소! 새로운 여행의 시작!|
|Norwegian||Nye steder... Kjente ansikter!|
|Polish||Nowe miejsca... Znajome twarze!|
|Brazilian Portuguese||Novos Lugares... Rostos Familiares!|
|Russian||Новые места, знакомые лица!|
|Spanish||Latin America||¡Nuevos lugares, rostros familiares!|
|Spain||¡Nuevos lugares, rostros familiares!|
|Swedish||Nya platser... Bekanta ansikten!|