Banned episodes

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Banned episodes are episodes of the anime which have been deemed unsuitable for airing or reairing in a specific country.

Banned episodes internationally

There have been five confirmed episodes of Pokémon that have either aired once or never in Japan, nor the rest of the world.

List of banned episodes

Known as the "seizure episode", this episode has been banned worldwide after airing only once in Japan. One particular scene of this episode had a series of flashing lights, which caused a total of approximately 685 Japanese children (375 girls and 310 boys) to be sent to the hospital with symptoms of epilepsy. The show went on hiatus for four months, delayed Holiday Hi-Jynx and Snow Way Out!, and canceled the airing of the New Year's Eve special. The episode also forced the producers to go back through the previous episodes and dim the lighting on them so as not to cause an accident of this magnitude again. As a result of this episode, Porygon and its evolutions, Porygon2 and Porygon-Z, have not made any appearances in the anime since EP038, except in brief cameos, with the latter only having made a cameo in the "World of Pokémon" opening of Kyurem VS. The Sword of Justice.

List of unaired episodes

It's New Year's Eve! Pocket Monsters Encore
This episode was scheduled to be broadcast December 31, 1997, between Holiday Hi-Jynx and Snow Way Out!. However, following the EP038 incident, the schedule was re-organized and this episode was never actually aired. No trailer for this episode has ever been seen, nor is any further information known apart from its Japanese title.
AG101 (unaired)
This episode was scheduled to be broadcast on November 4, 2004. However, not long before, a devastating earthquake struck Japan. Believing it would have been insensitive to air an episode about earthquakes mere weeks after the disaster, it was pulled from the air. The episode was never aired anywhere in the world, and the moves Earthquake, Fissure, and Magnitude have never been used in the anime since. Because the episode never aired, Barboach instead debuted in The Great Eight Fate!, but only in a minor role, and Ash never learned the location of the final Hoenn League Gym onscreen.
BW023 (unaired) and BW024 (unaired)
This two-part saga of Team Rocket facing off with Team Plasma was postponed due to the earthquake and tsunami that devastated Japan almost a week before the first half was supposed to air. At the time, they were expected to air at a later date because of their significance to the series and TV Tokyo's word on the matter. While the episodes were simply skipped in Japan, The Pokémon Company International edited the dubbed version of A Venipede Stampede! to remove the cliffhanger ending that set up the story, and all regions aired Battling for the Love of Bug-Types! followed by Emolga the Irresistible! instead. As of Team Plasma's Pokémon Power Plot!, the episodes have been retconned out of continuity, making it unlikely that they will ever air or be shown in a normal manner. Their script was made public in May 2023, however, detailing the events that would've taken place in them.[1]

Banned episodes in the English dub

Seven episodes have been banned in the United States. EP035, EP250, and SM064 are also banned in every other country outside of Asia as they have never been dubbed, due to most dubs being based on the English dub. EP018 was initially not dubbed, so it was never given to other countries to dub.

List of banned episodes

Note: the reasons given below may not have been corroborated officially.

Beauty and the Beach
This episode was initially banned when the episodes were first dubbed for airing in the United States. During 2000, the episode was finally dubbed and aired twice before disappearing once again. It was banned because James wore an inflatable body suit to give him large breasts in order to win a beauty contest (this scene was removed in the English version). An elderly man also stares at Misty's breasts, and in the original Japanese says that he will be looking forward to having fun with her in a few years. It also appears to be retconned out of continuity with the English dub, although Brutella is seen in the following episode.
This episode was banned due to the prevalent usage of handguns throughout the episode. Kaiser, the Safari Zone warden, points a gun at Ash's head a couple times, and even shoots the gun at Team Rocket at one point. The banning of this episode left a major plot hole and a continuity error in the English dub, as this was the episode where Ash captured all 30 of his Tauros. As this is the Safari Zone episode, it also makes the Safari Zone unseen in the English anime, though it is mentioned in the two episodes that took place before it.
Holiday Hi-Jynx
After this episode aired, a woman named Carole Boston Weatherford wrote an article stating that Jynx, which was featured prominently in the episode, is a negative stereotype of African-Americans related to characters in The Story of Little Black Sambo. Soon afterward, the episode was pulled from rotation and is not believed to have aired since 2000. Despite this, the episode was available on VHS, and was also available on the original Indigo DVD box set (however, it is not on the current box set). It is no longer mentioned on Poké, but was (albeit lacking pictures of Jynx) before April 2013. Also, it was added to the rotation on Boomerang in 2011, and still was included in Cartoon Network's online streaming services. Additionally, no restrictions were placed on this episode in other countries airing the English dub or a dub based on the English dub, but the episode isn't mentioned on any local versions of Poké This episode has also been banned in South Korea. This episode is still banned even after the Japanese re-airing of the Christmas Eve episode of Pokémon Smash!, in which Jynx was recolored to match what she currently looks like in the Pokémon games. The Japanese versions of Prime Video and Netflix have the edited version while Hulu has the original version. This episode is also banned in India after it first aired for unknown reasons. It was never re-aired on Hungama TV and Indian Disney XD reruns and was replaced by Misty Meets Her Match.
Stage Fight! and The Mandarin Island Miss Match
These Orange Islands episodes have been banned since April 2013 simply because of a small cameo by Jynx. They are not available on Netflix and are no longer even mentioned on Poké They also are not available on the re-release of the Orange Islands DVD box set. They were also never dubbed into local languages in India, only ever releasing in English dub on Jiocinema and were replaced in the TV airings by Bound For Trouble and Charizard Chills respectively. The latter episode even marks the final time Jynx was ever shown in her original design in the English dub.
This episode was also banned due to the large focus on Jynx, whose purple redesign was not used in this episode. Unlike the previous episodes, this one has never aired in English. Because of this, it was banned and has never been seen outside of Japan, South Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong.
This Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon episode was banned due to Ash wearing dark face paint resembling blackface during the second half of the episode in order to imitate the appearance of a Passimian. In the Korean dub on Netflix, it uses the English title A Touchdown for the Team!.

Banned episodes in Japan

Pikachu & Pichu
The Japanese narrator of the short, Sakai Noriko, was arrested in 2009 and later convicted of possession and abuse of drugs. Because of this, the short was "banned" in Japan, and it hasn't been rerun or released on home video or VOD in Japan since then. As such, it was the only theatrical Pikachu short to be excluded from the Pikachu The Movie Premium Box: 1998-2010.

Banned episodes in South Korea

These episodes were banned from airing in South Korea, causing South Korean continuity errors in the anime's run. Generally the banned episodes contained overt references to Japanese culture; however, the last banned episodes occurred during Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire. Furthermore, episodes EP260 to EP274 were never aired; the Silver Conference episodes were later remastered and dubbed as Pocket Monsters: Johto Region Story, The Final Chapter in 2024.

List of banned episodes

Challenge of the Samurai
This episode has been banned due to the episode featuring a samurai. This creates a continuity error, as this episode features the evolution of Ash's Metapod.
The Ghost of Maiden's Peak
This episode has been banned due to the episode featuring several Japanese cultural events.
Pokémon Scent-sation!
This episode has been banned likely due to Erika's traditional Japanese clothing worn in the perfume shop. This creates a continuity error, as Ash obtains the Rainbow Badge in this episode.
The Ninja Poké-Showdown
This episode has been banned due to the episode featuring several depictions of Japanese culture, including ninjas and kabuki. This creates a continuity error, as Ash wins the Soul Badge in this episode.
Riddle Me This
Likely banned due to the depiction of traditional Japanese clothing and architecture. This creates a continuity error, as the very next episode continues from where this one left off.
Bad to the Bone
Likely banned due to Otoshi's samurai-like clothing.
The Fourth Round Rumble
Likely banned due to Jeanette Fisher's traditional Japanese clothing. This creates a continuity error, as Ash wins his fourth Pokémon League match in this episode.
A Bout With Sprout
Likely banned due to the Sprout Tower's resemblance to traditional Japanese architecture.
Fighting Flyer with Fire
Likely banned due to the traditional Japanese style of Falkner's clothing. This creates a continuity error, as Ash wins the Zephyr Badge in this episode.
Wired for Battle!
Ariados, Amigos
Likely banned due to the overt focus on Japanese culture.
A Ghost of a Chance
From Ghost to Ghost
This creates a continuity error, as Ash wins the Fog Badge in this episode.
Trouble's Brewing
Likely banned due to the prominence of the Kimono Sisters, whose outfits are based on those of Japanese culture.
Ring Masters
Likely banned due to having Pokémon sumo wrestle, a Japanese style of fighting. This creates a continuity error in which Ash wins the King's Rock, which Misty's Poliwhirl would later pick up to evolve into a Politoed in Outrageous Fortunes.
Doin' What Comes Natu-rally
Banned due to the fortune-telling show being similar to a Shinto tradition.
Espeon, Not Included
Likely banned due to the prominence of the Kimono Sisters, whose outfits are based on those of Japanese culture.
For Ho-Oh the Bells Toll!
These episodes generally covered elements of Japanese culture, such as sumo wrestling and geishas.
Poetry Commotion!
Going, Going, Yawn
These two episodes never aired in Korea, although this may have been an oversight, as they were released on DVD. On the other hand, they don't appear on the official 포켓몬스터 AG episode page[2]. This also creates a plot hole, since in the latter episode, Ash wins the Heat Badge.

Banned episodes in other countries

Occasionally there are episodes that are not banned in Japanese or English, but are banned in another country.

The Song of Jigglypuff
This episode was skipped in Turkey. The reason for this has never been officially revealed. This creates a continuity error, since the main characters first encounter Jigglypuff in this episode. When Netflix released the first season years later, the episode was not skipped this time.
The Bicker the Better
This episode has been banned in several countries, including Ireland and Aruba. It has been alleged that the "battle of the sexes" format of the episode has caused those countries to ban the episode.

Postponed episodes and temporary bans

Some episodes were pulled off the air for a period of time for various reasons but were aired on a later date.

An Undersea Place to Call Home!
This episode, which was set to debut Skrelp and Dragalge, was postponed due to the sinking of the MV Sewol ferry in South Korea almost a week before the episode was scheduled to air in Japan.[3] Because of this, the episode was also skipped in the American dub. This caused a temporary continuity error, as this is the episode where Ash invented the "Rock Tomb Climb" technique, which he used to win his battle against Grant. Cartoon Network listed the dub title along with A PokéVision of Things to Come!, Going for the Gold!, and Coming Back into the Cold!. Later, however, it was removed from the list and was replaced with Climbing the Walls!. The episode finally aired in Japan on November 20, 2014, and in the United States on February 7, 2015.

Temporarily banned episodes in the United States

Tentacool & Tentacruel
After the events of September 11, 2001, this episode was taken out of rotation. In the months following the attack, Kids' WB! refused to air it due to the destruction of several buildings (particularly Tentacruel smashing a skyscraper) and the use of machine guns. When Cartoon Network started to air Pokémon, the episode was put back into rotation. It is also available on home video releases, and streaming services.
The Tower of Terror
This episode was temporarily banned after September 11, 2001. The official reason has never been confirmed, but many believe that the episode's title may have been the reason. The episode is no longer banned and continues to air. It is also available on home video releases, and streaming services.
The Uncut Story of Mewtwo's Origin
This ten-minute short was originally added to the beginning of Mewtwo Strikes Back in television airings in Japan and in the Japanese home video releases from the third one onward as part of the kanzenban (Japanese: 完全版 full version) edition of the movie. Though the short was dubbed in English, it was ultimately excluded from all overseas versions of the film, most likely due to touching upon mature themes, such as cloning ethics and death. As a result, the short was never officially dubbed in any other language.[4] The English dub of the short was eventually included as a special feature of the international DVD of Mewtwo Returns, released on August 17, 2001 in Australia and on December 4, 2001 in the United States. Though the English dub of Mewtwo Returns has become available for digital stream overseas, such as through Disney Xfinity, the dub of the Origin short has only been included in the DVD release, which has since ceased production.[5]

Postponed episodes in Japan

This episode, originally meant to be the 26th episode of Best Wishes, was originally scheduled to air in Japan on April 7, 2011, but it was postponed because of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. It later aired on June 23, 2011 with a slightly altered storyline to make it seem like it took place between BW036 and BW038 rather than BW023 and BW024. All of the references of the episode taking place in Castelia City were removed, including a portion of the original Japanese title, and the ending of the episode was reanimated to have Bianca leave the group instead of traveling with them in the original episode's plot. This creates a continuity error in BW024, where Bianca is revealed to have joined the group off-screen.
These episodes were temporarily postponed in Japan due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but have all aired since.

See also


External links

  This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.