| Fit To Be Tide
Orange League! Natsukan Gym!
|| February 25, 1999
| United States
|| February 5, 2000
|| Team Ota
|| 大橋志吉 Yukiyoshi Ōhashi
|| 井上修 Osamu Inoue
| Assistant director
|| 井上修 Osamu Inoue
| Animation director
|| 梶浦紳一郎 Shin'ichirō Kajiura
| Additional credits
Fit To Be Tide (Japanese: オレンジリーグ！ナツカンジム！ Orange League! Natsukan Gym!) is the 85th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on February 25, 1999 and in the United States on February 5, 2000.
Ash, Misty and their new friend, Tracey, are on a new adventure exploring the Orange Islands as Ash sets out to qualify for the Orange League Tournament. After hearing that the Mikan Gym Leader is known as one of the toughest trainers in the Orange Crew, Ash can't wait for the challenge. He learns that Pokémon battles are run a little differently on the Orange Islands, but he can always rely on his Squirtle to pull them through!
While riding Lapras across the ocean, a hungry Tracey says they are getting close to Mikan Island, which is also home to one of the four Gym Leaders in the Orange Crew. Meanwhile, Team Rocket, now in a Magikarp submarine, is tracking them, but their submarine's propellers gets tangled in seaweed and they begin to sink.
Upon reaching the shoreline, the group heads straight for the Pokémon Center. There, Ash talks to Professor Oak via videophone and lets him know he recently caught a Lapras. Tracey officially introduces himself to Oak, though the call is cut short as Ash's Muk smothers the Professor. Ash, Misty, Tracey, Pikachu, and Togepi walk along the dirt path and see Mikan Gym up ahead. Ash starts to run towards the Gym, though he stops after seeing a coconut on the ground. He runs over to it with Pikachu and picks it up, but a bucket of water falls on their heads, revealing it to be a trap set by a boy named Senta. He chastises Ash and criticizes his Top 16 position in the Indigo Pokémon League. He challenges Ash to a battle, but Cissy, his older sister and the Mikan Gym Leader, intervenes and scolds her younger brother.
Ash is prepared to have a match, but Cissy explains that on the Orange Islands, the Gym battles are different from Kanto's Pokémon battles. Senta presses the buttons on his remote, making a line of cans appear, and the battlefield becomes an aquatic pool. Cissy proceeds to call out her Seadra, which Ash scans with his Pokédex. She announces that the first challenge is a Water Gun match-up, where a Pokémon's accuracy is tested by shooting down as many cans as possible. Ash's Squirtle proves to be an even match against Seadra, and the aim of the challenge shifts to shooting down flying plates. Both are evenly matched and manage to hit the final target at the same time. Cissy declares the first challenge a draw, and Ash congratulates Squirtle's efforts while Seadra turns away in disgust.
Cissy escorts Ash and his friends to outside the Gym. To break the tie, Ash will go up against Cissy in a Pokémon Wave Ride, where the aim is to swim out to a flagged buoy and return to the beach first. Cissy calls on her Blastoise, while Ash sends out his Lapras. Before the race can begin, however, Team Rocket appears. When Ash asks that they disappear, James launches into a tear-filled confession about how he had to go out and untangle their submarine, nearly drowning in the process. Meowth calls for James to focus, and James follows suit by calling out Weezing. Amongst Weezing's Smog, Team Rocket nets Cissy's Blastoise and begins to dive back underwater, only to find that their submarine's propellers are still entangled in seaweed. In a bid to push through, Team Rocket snaps their pedals and their submarine sinks to the seafloor again. Just as Cissy had predicted, her Blastoise proves to be too powerful for Team Rocket's net, and it returns to the beach. Pikachu dips his tail in the water and uses Thunderbolt to shock Team Rocket, while Blastoise sends the trio blasting off with its Hydro Pump.
With Team Rocket defeated, the Pokémon Wave Ride begins. However, Ash and Cissy must stand on their Pokémon's back. During the race, they are evenly matched, so Ash has Lapras nudge the competition, but Blastoise responds, causing Ash to nearly lose his balance. The delay allows Cissy to get ahead of him, and she makes the turn around the flag first. As Ash catches up with Cissy, the pair notices a tidal wave suddenly appearing behind them. To Ash's surprise, Lapras freezes some of the wave with its Ice Beam. However, the wave still crashes into Cissy and sends her flying, but Blastoise catches her in time. Cissy once again gets ahead, but Ash comes up with an idea and has Lapras use an Ice Beam to make an ice-track. Lapras proves to be faster on the ice than in the water, allowing Ash to barely win the race.
Cissy commends Ash's clever Ice Beam tactic, and notes that she can see why he made it so far into the Indigo League. In commemoration of his victory, she gives Ash a Coral-Eye Badge. Afterwards, he and his friends ride away aboard Lapras.
Ash holding the Coral-Eye Badge
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
- Professor Oak's Pokémon Lecture:
- Pokémon senryū summary: Send them flying, with one kick, Hitmonlee.
- This episode's English dub title is a reference to the popular saying "Fit to be Tied".
- This is the first time Team Rocket is seen inside their Magikarp submarine, which they would go on to use throughout the entire Orange Islands arc. The submarine they used in season 1 resembled a Gyarados.
- "NATSUKAN", the Mikan Gym's Japanese name, can be seen printed on the Gym even in the dubbed version.
- Tracey's surname of Sketchit is revealed in this episode.
- This episode is featured on Volume 4: Squirtle from Viz Media's Pokémon All-Stars series.
- This episode was partially adapted into the book The Four-Star Challenge.
- This is the first episode in which the word "fight" is repeated three times during Team Rocket's motto.
- However, the first episode where this chronologically happens is Beauty and The Beach, which was initially banned outside of Japan and was subsequently aired out of order sometime after this episode.
- The island's name, "Mikan", is Japanese for "Orange". In the dub, however, all characters improperly pronounce Mikan, which should properly be "mee-khan," not "mike-an."
- Ash seemed to not recognize Seadra when first seeing it, despite having previously seen one in Round One - Begin!.
In other languages