Welcome to Pokemon Catch-up! In this little corner of PUCL, we go through a Fast Track Viewing List by a reddit user which allows us to speed through the numerous Pokemon seasons into the present. And while we’re still pretty far away, we’re already about a third way through the first season and things are just getting warmed up.
In last episode, Ash got the chance to rescue Charmander from a horrible owner and get the second Kanto starter onto his team. What will happen next? Let’s see!
Today’s episode: Season 1 (Indigo League), Episode 12: “Here Comes The Squirtle Squad”
“I will travel across the land, searching far and wide!” Indeed. After the iconic wonderful intro ends, we’re thrown back into our favorite world of Pokemon. The narrators recaps Ash’s recent achievements so far: catching a Bulbasaur and finding a Charmander. Ash is so proud of his victories that he actually hums the theme song!
Wow! Look at all that confidence. My guess is something will go wrong. And it did! The trio fell into a hole! By now, you should have a pretty good idea who put that hole in there.
And you would be wrong. The group stands up, dusts off and they find the hole surrounded by a group of laughing Squirtle.
When they make their way up, Ash decides to catch one of the Squirtle. Pikachu shocks one of the group members and then comes face-to-face with the leader, the Squirtle with the funky angled glasses.
Their stare down is promptly interrupted by the sound of the Police. The Squirtle run off, carrying their fallen comrade.
Ash, Misty, and Brock see an approaching motorcycle and it turns out to be Officer Jenny, but not the one the trio had already met, nor the one before. It was yet another identical Officer Jenny.
Jenny explains that her, and her cousins, are all named Jenny and all do the same work. How confusing.
They all go back to the Police Station where Jenny explains that the Squirtle were a group called the Squirtle Squad. They are all Squirtle deserted by their Pokemon trainers and so now they run wild and play tricks on the entire town. It seems that Pokemon desertion is quite common in these parts of Kanto.
The scene zooms out for us to see Team Rocket watching the group and Jenny.
James complains about eating pizza every day (wow, who complains about, right?) but Jessie has one only thing on her mind: world domination. However, hunger is getting to her as well. But before they can put their basket of food down and start eating, they are acosted by the Squirtle Squad.
The team doesn’t mind a fight and so they take their pokeballs out, take a step forward, and fall down into a hole.
The Squirtle enjoy their new meal. Devouring all the jelly donuts while Team Rocket hangs tied in a tree nearby. Jessie tries to strike a deal with the lead Squirtle to catch Pikachu. However, the pokemon doesn’t trust humans so Meowth pretends to own Jessie and James.
He even scolds them for speaking back.
The Squirtle believes it and lets Meowth, and only Meowth, go.
Back to our heroes. They are enjoying a quiet afternoon by the lake. Misty cast her fishing pole but instead of catching a Pokemon, a Squirtle makes an appearance. It promptly blasts water at the group, fully soaking them. Pikachu fires off a thunderbolt but hits Ash, Misty, and Brock instead!
Fun fact: pure water (H2O) is, in reality, not a good conductor. Electricity in water is actually transported by other substances present in water, for example salt. You should ask Thatch about it, he’s a scientist.
Back to the story. The group tries to shake off the shock and Ash faces the Squirtle. It retreats into its shell and hits Pikachu, knocking it in the water. Unfortunately for Pikachu, a Goldeen in the water managed to use its horn attack on the little electric mouse, knocking it out and out of the water.
The Squirtle tie up the group and Meowth joins them after all the work is done.
Somehow, the Squad was able to take the group into a cave, and put Pikachu in a cage. Ash tries to convince the Squirtle that Meowth is just using them but Meowth promptly shuts Ash up by scratching his face.
Meanwhile, Pikachu is in a bad shape and Brock tells them that Pikachu needs help or it will be in a lot of trouble. Ash pleads with the Squirtle and even cries.
The Squad lets Ash go to get a Super Potion from the town market but he has to return by noon the next day, otherwise they’ll dye Misty’s hair. Our hero promises to return promptly.
Ash runs as quickly as he can to get to the town, a vision of Pikachu on his mind.
He crosses a dangerous canyon, nearly falling to his death; luckily, the water stopped his fall. Unfortunately, there was a Goldeen that hit him hard with an attack.
Ash finally makes it to a town straight out of a western and makes it to the shop, only for Gary to open the door of the shop just a bit too hard, knocking the boy out. As a side note, Gary just leaves and there is no resolution as to why Gary was there or if he even noticed Ash.
Ash wakes up the next morning to see the Team Rocket duo robbing the same shop he tried to get into.
They buy flash powder and floss (for their teeth). They blast the shop owners with petal leaves.
Ash runs in and gets five guns pointed at his face by the shop patrons. Luckily, Officer Jenny calls them off and gets on a motorcycle with the boy. Because Ash brought down the canyon bridge earlier, Jenny tells him about a secret cave entrance.
Ash was supposed to be back by noon and by my count, it looks like he’ll make it. The passageway is large enough for a young boy but not large enough for the officer.
Ash uses Charmander to illuminate the dark passage until they get back to where Pikachu should be. Should be. They’re all gone.
Ash is worried that the Squirtle Squad did something horrible to his friends but the entire group made its way outside and the Squirtle let Brock and Misty go. Misty got to keep her red hair despite the threats.
Apparently, Squirtle play tricks and dyeing someone’s hair is a step too far. Ash is able to use the super potion just in time for Team Rocket to appear in their balloon.
They promptly start throwing bombs at the group and beckon Meowth to carry the still-exhausted Pikachu into the balloon via a rope ladder the duo throw down.
Ash, Misty, and Brock set out back to the cave and the Squirtle follow except for the Squirtle leader, the one with the angular glasses. In a true Ash-like fashion, the boy throws himself over the Squirtle to protect it from the oncoming bombs.
The bombs leave Ash dusty but luckily, Squirtle survived! More bombs are on the way but this time, Squirtle decides to save Ash by carrying the boy all the way to the cave.
The forest catches on fire and Team Rocket starts celebrating their victory. Unfortunately for them, Ash and the Squirtle leader made their way up the valley to face them. The boy commands Squirtle to fire off its water gun which punctures the Meowth balloon and Team Rocket blasts off.
Meanwhile, the forest fire is starting to spread! The entire town could be engulfed once the fire reaches it. But Ash has an idea.
The boy instructs the Squirtle to combine their water gun in order to put the fire out.
Within a flash, the fire is out and the town is celebrating the Squirtle Squad for saving the it! What a turn of events. They even appoint the Squirtle Squad as the town firefighters.
Ash and Co leave for yet another adventure when they notice the Squirtle leader running after them. It wants to come along with Ash, even taking off its signature glasses and with tear-filled eyes, it runs up and hugs Ash.
And that’s it! This means that Ash officially has all of the Kanto starters: Bulbasaur, Charmander, Squirtle, and even Pikachu (if you count Pokemon Yellow!). And honestly, he did not really catch any of them but instead gained their trust by helping them out and protecting them.
Next up, Episode 13: “Mystery At The Lighthouse”!