EP014 : Electric Shock Showdown
Original series
EP016 : Pokémon Shipwreck
Battle Aboard the St. Anne
Battle on the St. Annu!
First broadcast
Japan July 8, 1997
United States September 7, 1998*
September 28, 1998*
English themes
Opening Pokémon Theme
Japanese themes
Opening めざせポケモンマスター
Ending ひゃくごじゅういち
Animation Team Ota
Screenplay 大橋志吉 Yukiyoshi Ōhashi
Storyboard 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Assistant director 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Animation director 玉川明洋 Akihiro Tamagawa
Additional credits

Battle Aboard the St. Anne (Japanese: サントアンヌごうのたたかい! Battle on the St. Annu!) is the 15th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on July 8, 1997. It aired in the United States as the first dubbed episode on September 7, 1998, and later aired in-sequence on September 28, 1998.

Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details.


Ash and his friends board a fancy cruise ship called the St. Anne, thanks to tickets provided by two friendly but familiar-looking people. We soon learn that they're actually Jessie and James in disguise, and their latest plan is to lure Pokémon Trainers onto the ship and steal their Pokémon!

While onboard, Ash observes a Raticate defeating a Starmie. Ash challenges the Raticate with his Butterfree. Though the Raticate's owner removes his Pokémon before the battle ends, he's impressed with Ash's Butterfree and offers a trade. Ash trades his Butterfree for the Raticate, but soon regrets his decision. Meanwhile, James is tricked into buying a Magikarp.

While all the Trainers are gathered in a room, the ship's employees reveal themselves to be members of Team Rocket! As they suck up Poké Balls with vacuum-like devices, the Trainers fight back; their Pokémon team up to multiply their attacks and drive back the bad guys.

During all the commotion, a tumultuous storm brews outside. Eventually, the ship rocks violently, and the consensus is to abandon ship. Only Jessie, James, Meowth, and Ash and his friends are unable to flee, as they are knocked unconscious by the jerking movements of the ship—then the ship flips over and sinks!

What will become of our heroes? Will they have to join forces with Team Rocket to escape? And how successful could such a partnership be?


After earning the Thunder Badge, Ash and his friends walk across a bridge and spot a luxury liner in the distance. The group takes a closer look at the ship and wants to get on board, but Brock mentions that they cannot afford it, so they walk away. However, Jessie and James, disguised as ganguro girls, give them a free ticket to participate in a Pokémon Trainer party that is going to be held aboard the St. Anne. While Ash and his friends look for the luxury liner, Jessie and James make their way to a nearby lighthouse to meet up with Meowth. Meowth opens up a call with the Boss and notices a Persian fondly rubbing its head against the boss, having replaced Meowth due to the group's constant failure. Team Rocket reveals their plan: the party is a ruse to allow Team Rocket to steal the attending Trainers' Pokémon.

Ash and his friends board the ship and head into the main ballroom, noticing all the people, Pokémon, and merchandise. Ash notices a battle between a Starmie and a Raticate. Raticate uses Super Fang to break Starmie's jewel, giving Raticate the win. Ash decides to step forward to challenge the Raticate's Trainer, sending out Butterfree. Raticate attacks with Jump Kick, but Butterfree counters with Tackle. Raticate uses Hyper Fang, and Butterfree responds with Stun Spore to paralyze it. Ash prepares to finish the duel, but the Gentleman recalls his Raticate and declares it a draw, even though Ash was actually winning. Meanwhile, James walks by the vendors. A salesman calls him over and convinces him to buy a Magikarp, tricking him into thinking that the Pokémon is worth a lot of money.

The ship sails out of Vermilion City as Ash and his friends chow down. The Gentleman comes up to Ash and commends his Butterfree. He proposes a trade between his Raticate and Ash's Butterfree. Ash asks Brock if he should go through with it, but Brock is too distracted by the woman next to him to respond, so Ash agrees to go ahead with the trade. They go to a trade machine and Ash acquires Raticate while the man receives Butterfree. Meanwhile, Jessie and Meowth are extremely displeased at James's being conned into buying a worthless Pokémon such as Magikarp, especially when he reveals he used the advance on both his own salary and Jessie's to purchase it. Misty finds Ash looking out at sea, having second thoughts about the trade, and unsure if Butterfree will be well cared for. He mentions that, as the trade was happening, he remembered the experiences he had shared with Butterfree.

Team Rocket's plan goes into motion, with the ballroom being locked down and Team Rocket Grunts confronting the Trainers with vacuum packs to capture their Poké Balls. When one of the grunts walks up to Ash and demands his Pokémon, Ash orders Pikachu to attack the thugs with Thunder Shock. He spurs the other Trainers to fight back, and everyone sends out their Pokémon. Ash's Pikachu, Charmander, and Bulbasaur, together with Brock's Geodude, join the other Pokémon in stopping the Grunts. Ash notices a Butterfree swarm attacking with Stun Spore and decides to summon his Butterfree. However, out from the Poké Ball emerges Ash's new Raticate and Misty reminds him that he traded Butterfree away. As he watches, Ash deeply misses his Butterfree, remembering his experiences with him and wanting him back.

Ash sends out Pidgeotto to join others in a group Gust attack. The Pikachu group uses Thunderbolt to send Team Rocket flying off the ship and foiling their scheme. However, during the battle the ship has sailed directly into a storm. As strong waves begin to batter the ship, James drops the Poké Ball holding Magikarp and runs after it. Meanwhile, Ash finds the Gentleman and requests that the trade be reversed. The man agrees, and they begin to execute a reverse trade. The captain tries to calm the passengers, assuring them that the ship is unsinkable, but, after another wave crashes against the ship, he enters a lifeboat. The passengers and crew begin scrambling into the other lifeboats to evacuate. Misty and Brock find Ash finishing the trade. Ash grabs his Poké Ball, but another wave causes him to drop it. Ash runs after it and his friends follow.

By this time, most of the passengers and crew had gotten off the ship safely. As Ash grabs Butterfree's Poké Ball, the ship rocks again, throwing him and his friends into another room, and knocking them out. Likewise, just as James grabs Magikarp's Poké Ball, another wave sends Team Rocket flying against a wall; they too are knocked unconscious. The ship capsizes and goes down. The captain, watching from his life boat, assumes that everyone is safe, not realizing that Ash, his friends, and Team Rocket are still trapped on board.

Major events

Ash's Butterfree being traded for Raticate
For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the history page.



Pokémon debuts



Dare da?


Who's That Pokémon?

Who's That Pokémon?: Raticate


  • When the episode aired as a sneak peek in the United States, it was not shown everywhere, as some areas ran the annual The Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon instead.
  • According to Rachael Lillis, this and Pokémon Shipwreck were the first episodes to be dubbed into English.
  • The St. Anne retains its Japanese name in the anime, despite being called the S.S. Anne in the games. This is probably due to the number of paint edits required to make the change, but it actually prevents a future dub error when Ritchie is on a ship called the S.S. Anne in The Search for the Legend.
  • This is the first episode in which Ash is seen making a Pokémon trade. This is also the first episode where a trade is done at all.
    • With this episode also featuring a Pokémon being bought, it also marks the first episode where a Pokémon is obtained through means other than catching, not counting Pikachu.
  • The button the Gentleman pressed to start the trade was a "record" button. There were also play, fast forward, and pause buttons.
  • This is the first episode in which Team Rocket members besides Jessie, James, and Meowth appear.
  • While there wasn't an attack by Team Rocket on the ship in the games, an undercover Global Police officer mentions he is on the trail of Team Rocket, hinting that there may be an attack.
  • The scene where all of the Pikachu are jumping over a wall to battle the Team Rocket soldiers is identical to the scene in Pokémon Emergency! where the Pikachu are jumping over a wall in the Pokémon Center to battle Team Rocket.
  • The captain calling the St. Anne unsinkable and then sinking is a clear reference to the RMS Titanic. Indeed, in the next episode's recap, the narrator acknowledges this by exclaiming "Holy Titanic!".
  • This episode was partially adapted into the book Island of the Giant Pokémon.
  • While not in the episode itself, the preview for this episode from the previous episode had Ash directly referring to Giovanni by name, the only instance where one of the protagonists ever used his name.


  • When Ash is impressed when he sees the inside of the cruise, his bag is missing.
  • During the battle between the Gentleman's Raticate and an unnamed Trainer's Starmie, the unnamed Trainer tells his Starmie to use an attack called "Spinning Tackle", an attack similar to Rapid Spin, a move that can be considered a spinning tackle. However, Rapid Spin wasn't introduced until Generation II.
  • Raticate uses Jump Kick in this episode, a move that can't be learned by Raticate in the games.
  • During the trade, the Gentleman puts Raticate's Poké Ball on the right side of the machine, followed by Ash putting Butterfree's on the left. However, when it shows the Pokémon, they come from the opposite sides.
  • In the scene where James is walking by the Magikarp salesman, the booth to the left of the Magikarp salesman's booth has a pyramid of normal colored Poké Balls on it. Later, in a scene where James is talking to the Magikarp salesman, the pyramid of Poké Balls is now gold.
  • When Jessie insults James for getting tricked by the salesman, her shirt is that of her usual uniform instead of her disguise.
  • In the Italian and Hindi dubs, Giovanni's Persian is referred as a Persian cat.

Dub edits

  • Kanto Pokérap: Day 5 (Version 2)
  • In the original version, Ash calls the man to whom he trades his Butterfree a "gentleman" and thus is acknowledged as one on Bulbapedia.
  • After the gentleman asks if anyone is brave enough to challenge his Raticate, in the Japanese version Ash claims he's "fired up" as flames briefly flash in his eyes. In the English dub, Ash simply says "I can't wait!" but the flames in his eyes remain.
  • Some additional sound effects are added to certain scenes in the English dub, such as Butterfree and Raticate's battle (where their vocal effects are added as they keep striking each other in midair), the St. Anne leaving port (where additional crashing wave sounds are added) and right before Misty goes to talk to Ash after the trade (where the ship's horn is added to the shot).
  • After Jessie announces that Team Rocket will take their Pokémon, in the Japanese version the crowd is silent. The English dub adds overlapping dialogue from the crowd in reaction. Most notably, a man asks "Our Pokémon?" and a boy saying, "They can't do that!")
  • When the force of the waves knock Butterfree's Poké Ball out of Ash's hands, Ash reacts silently in the Japanese version, whereas in the English dub, he shouts, "No!"
  • The scene with Giovanni talking with Jessie, James and Meowth was used in the VHS A Sneak Peek at Pokémon with alternate dialogue. Rather than discussing their plan, Giovanni tells them, that they need to capture Ash's Pikachu before various Pokémon merchandise such as the anime, manga, video games, trading cards and figures, hits the stores or else they'll probably be found out.
  • When the episode aired as a sneak peek, it had different opening and closing narrations:
    • Sneak Peek opening narration: "Welcome to this special exclusive sneak preview of Pokémon! For this sneak peek, let's pick up the adventure as our heroes are departing Vermilion City. As always, Brock, Misty and Pikachu join Ash on his quest to become a Pokémon Master."
    • Regular version opening narration: "As his Pokémon journey continues, Ash is one step closer to achieving his dream of becoming a Pokémon Master. Last time, Ash defeated the Vermilion City Gym Leader and earned a Thunder Badge."
    • Sneak Peek closing narration: "Not everyone, captain. And as the St. Anne heads to the bottom of the sea, our heroes are trapped unconscious inside, and so is Team Rocket. Could this be the end? How will they escape their watery fate? Those answers will be coming soon enough, but tomorrow we'll be taking you back to the beginning, to find out how everybody met, and discover how this incredible Pokémon adventure all began."
    • Regular version closing narration: "Not everyone, captain. And as the St. Anne heads to the bottom of the sea, our heroes are trapped unconscious inside, and so is Team Rocket. Could this be the end? How will they escape their watery fate? I don't know, but I have a terrible sinking feeling!"
  • Misty's fantasy of wearing a bikini is removed in the Hindi dub.

In other languages

EP014 : Electric Shock Showdown
Original series
EP016 : Pokémon Shipwreck
  This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.