EP015 : Battle Aboard the St. Anne
Original series
EP017 : Island of the Giant Pokémon
Pokémon Shipwreck
Pokémon Adrift
First broadcast
Japan July 15, 1997
United States September 29, 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 武上純希 Junki Takegami
Storyboard 井上修 Osamu Inoue
Assistant director 井上修 Osamu Inoue
Animation director 江藤真澄 Masumi Etō
Additional credits

Pokémon Shipwreck (Japanese: ポケモンひょうりゅうき Pokémon Adrift) is the 16th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on July 15, 1997, and in the United States on September 29, 1998.

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


Our heroes are revealed in the middle of a trap concocted by Team Rocket. Luckily the Pokémon Trainers are able to pool their Pokémon resources and successfully battle Team Rocket and their evil crew. In the midst of the confusion on board, however, a tumultuous storm wreaks havoc on the cruise forcing everyone except Ash, Misty, Brock and Pikachu as well as Team Rocket to evacuate the sinking ship. Luckily, Ash was able to exchange Butterfree for Raticate before the ship went down, but now our heroes are forced to team up with their long-standing enemies in order to survive their life or death predicament.


At the end of the previous episode, the St. Anne overturned and sank into the sea, taking Ash, his friends, and Team Rocket with it. The next morning, a police ship pulls up at the location, and Officer Jenny gives a short speech, revealing that they are all presumed dead. She tosses a bouquet of white flowers into the sea of debris as a memorial. Jenny and the other officers salute the presumed victims, and one plays the trumpet as the flowers sink underwater. Meanwhile, Misty, Brock, and Pikachu call to Ash, urging him to wake him up. When he does, Misty points to the porthole and Ash looks out, noticing fish swimming. He realizes that the ship has sunk, and it is then revealed that the ship is upside-down and perched atop a seamount, positioned at the mouth of a trench.

Meanwhile, Jessie and James wake up from being knocked out as well. They run out into the hall and notice everything upside down. Meowth informs them that the ship capsized and sank. James panics as Jessie brings out Ekans. She orders it to use Acid to open a hole in the floor. Meowth tries to stop her but is too late. The attack opens a hole and water begins to pour in as the ship rumbles. Jessie and James try to block the jet of water, but fail, as the water fills the hall and washes Team Rocket away. Elsewhere on the ship, Ash and his friends head out into the stairwell, the water level prevents them from going to the deck. Misty notes that the ship will take time to fill with water, but time is still critical. Ash wants to dive down to the deck, but Brock says that it could be dangerous. Ash realizes he is right, as he has a vision of running into a locked hatch and drowning. Misty sends out her Goldeen to scout the hall. It swims down and finds a dead end, but runs into the members of Team Rocket, who are again unconscious.

As Ash and his friends wait for Goldeen, James's head pops out of the surface, scaring them. Goldeen then comes into view as it pushes Team Rocket, who are blue in the face from nearly drowning, up onto the deck. Jessie and James regain consciousness and stand up, ready to battle. They send out Ekans and Koffing as Ash and Brock send out Charmander, Squirtle, Bulbasaur, and Geodude. Before any of them can launch an attack, the ship begins to tip, sending everyone sliding. Ash orders the Pokémon to go to the other side, but they cause the ship to tilt the other way. After sliding back and forth, Misty orders everyone to recall their Pokémon and forget the battle in order to survive. They do so and the ship regains balance. Misty finally manages to convince everyone to work together, temporarily. With the truce, Misty reveals that she knows the ship's blueprints because she once built a model of it, and that they should go up to the bottom of the ship and cut through the hull to escape. They approach a staircase, and Brock sends out Onix to allow everyone to climb up.

The ship's lights begin to fail as the group approaches a darkened portion of the hall. Ash brings out Charmander to light the way. They enter the next room and find it impossible to cross over to the engine room hatch due to the large gap and the raging fire below them. Ash has Pikachu shock him to get him to think. He then sends out Bulbasaur to use Vine Whip to create a bridge to the opposite hatch. Ash and his friends begin to slowly cross the vines, but James is too scared to cross, begging Jessie and Meowth to go on and leave him behind. Jessie slaps him and helps him regain his composure, but Ash and his friends are already across. Jessie orders Bulbasaur to send back the vines.

Eventually, everyone makes it safely to the engine room, though Team Rocket is virtually exhausted. Ash brings out Charmander to use Flamethrower to cut an opening through the hull. Misty instructs everyone to strap onto a Water-type Pokémon, but Team Rocket doesn't have one. The hull opens and water pours in. Ash recalls Charmander, who is running from the water. Ash and Pikachu strap onto Squirtle, while Misty gets Goldeen and Brock gets Starmie. While Ash and his friends swim into the waterfall and escape to the surface, Team Rocket is still stranded. James suddenly starts snickering, as he reveals the golden Poké Ball holding his Magikarp, which has proved useful after all. Team Rocket straps onto Magikarp and attempts to escape, but they find that Magikarp can't swim. The water picks up and washes the ship into the trench, leaving Team Rocket's fate unknown.

Ash and his friends climb onto a makeshift platform, noticing that Team Rocket hasn't yet made it to the surface. Ash looks out to sea and is unable to spot any land. Brock brings up the story of Noah, sending out a bird to search for land and Ash does the same thing by sending Pidgeotto out to scout. Pidgeotto locates Team Rocket on the surface, still attached to the splashing Magikarp, and brings them back to the raft. Ash and his friends presume that they have passed on and attempt to push them back into the sea as a traditional burial. However, Jessie and James wake up just in time to prevent their accidental drowning.

The two groups have no choice but to stay on the platform for the night. They wake up the next day and all are starving. Everyone immediately thinks of the Magikarp as their first source of food, Meowth attempts to bite it but ends up breaking his fangs, as Magikarp is, according to Misty, only scales and bones. At this point, James is so frustrated with his Pokémon that he kicks it into the ocean. The Magikarp begins to glow as it evolves into a Gyarados. Ash checks his Pokédex as James attempts to reclaim his role as the Pokémon's master, but is too scared of it. Misty sends out Goldeen, Staryu and Starmie. Brock thinks she will battle it, but she only plans to run away, with the Water Pokémon pulling the raft as everyone else attempts to row. Gyarados begins to pursue them but suddenly stops. They think it is tiring, but Misty remembers sailor stories about Gyarados's Dragon Rage attack. The waves pick up as four more Gyarados appear. They swim in a circle, forming a powerful water cyclone. The Gyarados advance towards the raft. Brock urges everyone to flee again, but Misty says that nobody has ever survived the attack before. Ash, his friends, and Team Rocket try to stay together but become separated by the water spout's strong vortex.

Major events

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?: Magikarp


  • The narrator makes a reference to the Titanic, a luxury liner that sank in the Atlantic Ocean in 1912.
  • The plot of this episode is very similar to the 1972 disaster film The Poseidon Adventure.
  • PM-16 was the name of the ship on which the memorial service was held. The initials appear to stand for Pocket Monsters and the number corresponds with the episode number. A similar Easter egg appears in Misty Meets Her Match.
  • This is the first episode in the dub to air after the North American release of Pokémon Red and Blue.
  • Real fish are seen once again in this episode.
  • This is the first time that Ash, his friends, and Team Rocket have to work together.
  • In the engine room scene, James refers to Jessie as Jessica.
  • Team Rocket does not recite their motto in this episode.
    • However, Jessie and James do say most of the motto in their dream, and with different music, and also briefly gave the opening lines while recovering from nearly drowning before realizing their "saviors" were Ash, Misty and Brock to their anger.
  • Brock makes a reference to Noah and his Ark, marking the first reference to a real-world religion in the anime.
  • Although Misty never returned her Pokémon to their Poké Balls when the Gyarados attacked the raft, they were not lost.
  • This episode was partially adapted into the book Island of the Giant Pokémon.
  • It is unknown how the police knew that Jessie and James went down with the ship, and even more so that they knew them by name. Team Rocket wasn't even supposed to be on board, and their presence wasn't known until shortly before the sinking. The same happens with Ash, Brock, and Misty, as there was never a rollcall.
  • This episode was the first episode to hint at Misty's fear of Gyarados, which was eventually confirmed in Cerulean Blues, as she immediately strategized running away from the Gyarados, and in the Japanese version was shocked at Magikarp evolving into Gyarados.


  • At the beginning of the episode, Misty's bag is purple instead of red.
  • When Meowth says that Jessie and James picked a bad place for a nap, the edge of his ears is cream-colored instead of black.
    • Later on, right before Ash and his friends are about to be hit by Gyarados' Dragon Rage, the edge of his ears is colored brown instead of black. This error is repeated in the recap of this episode in Island of the Giant Pokémon.
  • When Meowth says that it will not be easy to get off the ship while it is underwater, the tips of his feet and tail are colored brown instead of orange.
  • When Jessie tells Ekans to use Acid and when she and James are trying to cover the hole, the stripe on Ekans's underbelly is missing.
  • When Team Rocket begins reciting their motto, Jessie's gloves are missing.
  • When Ash and Brock are holding their Poké Balls to battle Team Rocket, the tip on Ash's hat is white instead of red.
  • When Ash and Brock get ready to battle Team Rocket, they are in a flooded staircase room. However, when the St. Anne tilts to the right, Ash, his friends, Team Rocket, and their Pokémon are suddenly sliding in an upside-down hallway.
  • During the scene where the Pokémon are running back and forth to give the ship more balance, when Brock yells for Geodude to come back, part of Ekans can be seen to the left of Brock, even though it just went to the other side.
  • When Ash and his friends recall their Pokémon during their battle with Team Rocket, Ash's left glove is missing. This also happens with both of his gloves when they escape the ship.
  • When James shows Jessie and Meowth the gold-plated Poké Ball containing the Magikarp he bought in the last episode, the Poké Ball doesn't have scratch marks anymore (Meowth had scratched the front of the ball out of anger at James in the previous episode).
  • While stranded on the raft, Misty complains that if she knew that she was going to be stranded, she would have stuffed her face on the ship. However, in the previous episode (on the ship), she can be seen eating heavily.
  • When Ash and his friends paddle away from Gyarados, the tips on Meowth's feet are missing.
  • In the English dub:
    • During the scene where Meowth tries to shake Pikachu's hand and gets shocked, Meowth and Misty's Japanese voices are heard.
    • When Ash and his friends get hit by Gyarados' Dragon Rage, Team Rocket can be heard yelling 「やなかんじ!」 "Yana Kanji!" "Bad Feeling!" in their Japanese voices, which is the Japanese equivalent of "Team Rocket is blasting off again!".

Dub edits

  • Kanto Pokérap: Day 1 (Poliwrath error)
  • The Titanic reference was in the dub only.
  • The scene where Misty tells them to retrieve their Pokémon is slightly different between the two versions. The original version had Misty threatening Team Rocket that if they don't return their Pokémon, she'll throw them into the water. In the dub, she states "What's more important? A Pokémon battle or your life?"
  • The part where Jessie and James mention they're being "good dressers" was actually them saying "they'll never forget each other" in the original version.
    • Jessie also mentions that if James doesn't come with them, he'll definitely die down there in the Japanese version.
    • Also in the Latin American dub, Jessie states that she'll always remember James for being a "Wonderful brother". This is false as Jessie and James are not siblings, although it was most likely a dub mistake.
    • Also, Misty states she doesn't want to die in the original version.
  • When Ash and his friends mention their condolences when they are about to put the seemingly-drowned Team Rocket into the sea as a funeral, they also mentioned the fact that they regretted the way Team Rocket died in the original version.
  • Originally, the scene where Gyarados evolved had Misty saying that she heard about Magikarp evolving into Gyarados.
  • In the Italian redub, when Ash calls Squirtle for help, his usual cry is replaced with a high-pitched voice saying "Squirtle's ready!"
  • In the Hindi Hungama TV dub, the narrator does not use the word "Titanic" but instead says that the ship was considered unsinkable.
  • In both Hindi dubs, Officer Jenny announces Jessie's name as Jessica.

In other languages

EP015 : Battle Aboard the St. Anne
Original series
EP017 : Island of the Giant Pokémon
  This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.