Gotta Dance! (Japanese: おどるポケモンひみつ基地 Secret Base of the Dancing Pokémon) is the 12th Pikachu short of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on July 19, 2003 and in the United States on June 1, 2004.
It was shown in Japanese theaters together with Jirachi: Wish Maker, and released on a separate DVD. The English dub was included as a bonus feature on the Jirachi: Wish Maker DVD, in the original 16:9 widescreen aspect ratio.
Meowth is in charge of the Team Rocket secret base, a mysterious place full of odd gadgets and gizmos. Desperate to impress the boss, Meowth wants to use the Dancing PokéBaton—a device that lets users control Pokémon as they please—to create a show that’s sure to wow. Meanwhile, Pikachu and its friends finish up playing in the forest and stumble on the base. The gang hears Whismur, the Whisper Pokémon, crying for help—but when they try to make their rescue, the Dancing PokéBaton goes off and sends the whole group into a dancing frenzy! When a noise-loving Loudred and Ludicolo get caught up in the dancing, the madness gets even wilder! What’s going to happen to Meowth’s precious secret base?
Mudkip climbs along a branch and calls for Lotad to join it. Mudkip jumps over Lotad, sending Lotad tumbling towards the ground – but it is caught by a low branch on the way down. Pikachu and Torchic hear the commotion and run to help Mudkip. Treecko's relaxation on a short branch comes to an end when he looks down to see what all the ruckus is, but in doing so he too slips and falls. Pikachu, Mudkip, and Torchic see Treecko falling and jump to catch it – freeing Lotad in the process. Suddenly, the branch springs back, sending Treecko, Mudkip, Torchic, and Pikachu flying. Lotad frantically rushes about trying to catch the others, but misses: Treecko is the first to land, Pikachu and Torchic land tangled in a heap, and Mudkip lands face first. To make matters worse, the ground suddenly gives way, sending them all tumbling down the cliff and into a rock. When the group comes to, Lotad spots a large building in the distance painted to look like dice with a giant red R on it: a Team Rocket base in the Hoenn region.
Inside their newly built headquarters, the Team Rocket trio have prepared a lavish event for their boss, Giovanni's impending arrival. All three of them hope they’ll get a promotion out of it. Jessie and James plan to greet the boss and leave Meowth in charge of everything.
Meowth is responsible for the entertainment and calls for a rehearsal of the routine. At this, Seviper, Cacnea, Wobbuffet, and three anxious Whismur with maracas appear all gathered on a stage. The Whismur shake their maracas a little to appease Meowth, who smiles and twirls a little, revealing a strange blue baton with a red and blue Poké Ball on the top, and various buttons on the bottom – his newly invented Dancing Pokébaton. With that, he presses a button at the top of the baton, causing a rousing melody, "Polka O Dolka", to come blaring into the room. The Pokémon begin dancing to the song in sync. Meowth is thrilled with his efforts and imagines Giovanni kicking out his Persian and Meowth becoming his new favorite lap cat. Meowth laughs to himself, savoring the fantasy, but it is soon back to business and he orders the Whismur back into their cage.
Meanwhile, Pikachu, Torchic, Mudkip, and Treecko approach the base, eager to find a way in. Lotad tries to follow, but lags behind the others. Pikachu and the others discover an open window leading into the base's storage area. As they look inside, Lotad desperately tries to get a look, sending a rock rolling into the den of a snoozing Loudred, yet the rock miraculously does not disturb the large Pokémon.
They watch as Seviper hisses and scares the Whismur back into a cage. Meowth orders them to stay quiet while he and his crew take a break and have some lunch. Meowth and the others soon leave, with Seviper closing the door with its tail. Pikachu and the others try to get a better look, but a push from Lotad sends all five tumbling into the room. Pikachu then hears the Whismurs' cries for help and runs over. He asks them what Seviper, Cacnea, Wobbuffet, and Meowth, complete with funny face-pulling impressions of each one, are plotting. The Whismur reply that they're trapped. Pikachu notices the lock on the cage and suggests to the others to use their attacks to break it open, to which they agree. Pikachu fires a Thunderbolt at the lock, Torchic adds an Ember and Mudkip helps with a Water Gun attack, all three attacks break the cage open, freeing the Whismur. This loud noise doesn't disturb the Loudred either. The noise is noticed by Meowth who charges into the room to find the broken and empty cage. Meowth is frustrated and orders Seviper and the others to start looking for the runaway Whismur. Seviper, Cacnea, and Wobbuffet quickly oblige, sending Meowth tumbling down the stairs and the Dancing Pokébaton goes flying.
The baton lands on Treecko's head, triggering it and causing Polka O Dolka to come blaring into the room. Pikachu and the others, plus Meowth and his cronies begin dancing involuntarily, first nodding then performing a complete jig. Even the Loudred from earlier and a passing Ludicolo join in, all except Treecko. In its zeal to not dance, Treecko knocks over a barrel, closing up the baton in the process. Meowth suddenly realizes that Pikachu and the other twerps are there. Pikachu and the others except for Lotad dive for cover, but Meowth demands the Whismur back. The Whismur retaliate by sending some barrels tumbling towards them, leading Pikachu and friends to try escaping up the stairs. Treecko follows behind with the baton device in hand.
Meowth and his cronies look around confused as to where Pikachu went, but Cacnea points out the group hanging onto the tower roof. Pikachu attempts to fire a Thunderbolt at Meowth, but Wobbuffet uses Mirror Coat to send it back at them, and Mudkip nearly falls. Treecko uses the baton to help and Mudkip grabs a hold, only to look down and notice that it's a long way down. In its panic, Mudkip triggers the Dancing Pokébaton -- Polka O Dolka begins again, everyone but Treecko dances again. All the dancing causes the patio to give way -- Lotad slips and causes the baton to play a tango. Everyone partners up and tangos their way to safety right before the patio completely falls off, after which everyone resumes dancing on a catwalk until Pikachu accidentally switches the baton off.
The chase resumes as Pikachu and his friends duck into the ballroom. Mudkip climbs on a table, sending all the food and silverware atop Meowth. Torchic sends Cacnea flying into the ceiling, angering it to the point where it begins firing Pin Missiles in rapid succession, destroying almost the entire base in the process. In his frustration, Meowth accidentally triggers the Pokébaton and Polka O Dolka begins again, and in his panic to turn the baton off, sets it to play a hula, which everyone save Treecko does, at least until a party ball lands on Meowth, deactivating the baton and resuming the chase. Loudred, however, continues doing the hula as if nothing's going on.
Meowth chases everyone up into the scaffolding. During all the commotion, Cacnea trips and falls on a piece of wood, sending a bucket on top of Seviper's head. Seviper crashes into Meowth, sending them hurtling to the ground, but they trip on a rope, and go flying through the air. The Pokébaton, meanwhile, falls on Wobbuffet's head, triggering it. Polka O Dolka begins again, and everyone tries to dance on the scaffolding. In his rush of joy, Wobbuffet tosses the baton in the air and it lands in a pile of sand, causing it to malfunction. The first thing it does is trigger a waltz; which finally spurs Treecko to join in the dancing. Treecko sweeps Mudkip in its arms and spins around, getting Mudkip dizzy in the process. As the baton continues to go haywire, the music gets faster and faster, until the baton finally explodes due to overload.
But the mayhem isn't over yet; irked by the spoilt fun, the Loudred grabs a pipe and proceeds to chase everyone, ultimately smashing a supporting foundation column. The whole building shakes; everyone huddles up in the teetering room in fear -- and then Lotad sneezes, causing the whole building to collapse and sending everyone tumbling to the ground. Lotad fires a Water Gun to halt the impending collision of their half of the flying floor with a cliff. Once the group has landed safely, Pikachu leads the celebrations.
Meowth muses as he trudges back to the ruins of the storage room. With that, he opens the door and it falls off it hinges, revealing the scope of the damage all the mayhem caused. Soon the entire base comes crashing down completely, taking Meowth and his friends with it.
- During the dancing practice, Meowth and the other Pokémon are dancing beside a roller showing various places taken from other Pikachu shorts: the mountain from Pikachu's Vacation (which is still misspelled as "Pokemon"), the tree from Pikachu's Rescue Adventure, the house of tires from Pikachu & Pichu, the garden from Pikachu's PikaBoo and the train from Camp Pikachu, respectively.
- This is the first time Meowth has had a boss fantasy outside of the main series.
- This is the first Pikachu short in which other members of Team Rocket make an appearance.
- Although Ash's Treecko, May's Torchic, Brock's Lotad, and Brock's Mudkip are present alongside Pikachu, Ash, May, Brock, and Max are not present at all, meaning the only humans that are present in this Pikachu short are Jessie, James, and Giovanni (who appears in a fantasy sequence).
- Although the main series was using the digital animation process at the time of Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire, this Pikachu short alongside Jirachi: Wish Maker were still produced using traditional hand-painted cels.
- During the dancing practice, Seviper's bottom jaw is colored orange instead of yellow.
- The pipe that hits Loudred's head is colored gray instead of orange.
- When Loudred starts chasing after the Pokémon, Ludicolo is nowhere to be seen even though it was dancing with Loudred.
- The narrator narrates the Pikachu short in the original Japanese version, while Meowth narrates the Pikachu short in the English dub.
In other languages
|Brazilian Portuguese||Vamos Dançar|
- Official website for Gotta Dance! (Japanese)
|This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.|