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For Ho-oh the Bells Toll


This was an excellent episode that explained a lot. It didn't waste any time getting started either. The Tin Tower bells started ringing, Morty made his reappearance, and we got our first sighting of Eusine from Pokemon Crystal...all before the opening song.
TR trying to attract Ho-oh by ringing the bells was funny, I loved Jessie's reaction when they wouldn't actually ring. When the trio caught up with Morty again, I liked what he said to Ash: "It's as if your presence here is evidence that Ho-oh is coming." Morty's story about how the Tin Tower burned down and how Ho-oh resurrected Raikou, Suicune, and Entei was great and fit right in with the events in the G/S/C games. So Ho-oh watches the world because of the problems between humans and Pokemon that started that fire, and its great anger will only melt when the hearts of Pokemon and humans finally meet as one. It was interesting seeing Ash and Misty's awed reaction to that, I couldn't help but wonder if that was some kind of foreshadowing of something that would happen in the future involving Ash and Ho-oh.
I thought Eusine's reactions to being told that Ash had seen Ho-oh and met Suicune were funny. "Suicune only appears to the most skilled Pokemon trainers!" he exclaimed. It was quite ironic that without knowing it, he simultaneously complimented Ash and insulted himself with that one comment. His wanting to battle Ash was cool, it was just like in the games. He didn't believe Ash about Suicune, and wanted to battle to defend its honor...as if Suicune would care. Morty getting to ref the match (even though it never really started) was a cool touch, I bet he doesn't get to do that very often, being the local Gym Leader.
The forest Pokemon getting angry at Team Rocket for breaking one of the bells was funny. There were quite a few of them in the episode too, a couple of which we haven't seen in a while: Caterpie, Spinarak, Weedle, Tangela, Parasect, and Gligar.
When Eusine thought that the relationships between humans and Pokemon would never be the same again, I liked Ash's comment about how Ho-oh was watching, so they had to set things right for everybody. I liked how Ash was, in his determination, ready to battle those Parasect outside the Gym, but Morty had an easier way. He just had Gengar use Confuse Ray on them, enabling the group to get by. It was funny to see Team Rocket hanging there, wrapped in all that webbing. Meowth's comment was funny: "Would you believe we was workin' on webdesign?" I liked the domed Reflect that Eusine's Alakazam used to block the wild Pokemon's String Shot. When that Tangela used Vine Whip and got through the Reflect, it was interesting that Brock acknowledged how Vine Whip is a Special Attack, so Reflect won't work against it. It's rare for them to say that kind of thing in the anime. A single Vine Whip shouldn't have KOed Alakazam, but Eusine did use it later so maybe it just had the wind knocked out of it.
The appearance of Suicune was cool, how it got rid of some of the webbing with its powers, unceremoniously dumping Team Rocket to the ground in the process. I liked how the camera panned back and emphasized the scene with Suicune standing on the ledge and Ash looking up at it. Another foreshadowing? You never know. I liked how it blasted off TR with one attack. It really wasn't the right time for Eusine to challenge Suicune to a battle, but he did anyway. I liked how Suicune's Roar made Alakazam go right back into its ball, just like in the games. I also liked how everything was put back to normal at the end of the episode, and they were wondering if it was the power of Ho-oh that calmed the Pokemon and got rid of the rest of the webbing.
So as I said, an excellent episode that explained a lot, and added more hints to the theory of a possible connection between Ash and Ho-oh, and maybe even an upcoming, ultimate encounter with it. Speculation is always fun.

Geodude's rating: 9.5 out of 10

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