| Gotta Catch Ya Later!
Gotta Catch Ya Later! (Japanese: サヨナラ…そして、たびだち！ Goodbye... And Then, Setting off!) is the 273rd episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on November 7, 2002 and in the United States on October 18, 2003.
|Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details.|
With the Silver Conference and Johto behind them, Ash, Misty and Brock are heading towards Pallet Town and decide to make a stop in Viridian City. Brock is the most excited, simply because it means that he'll get to see Nurse Joy. Misty is, as usual, tired of Brock's misguided romantic efforts.
Ash deposits his Poké Balls at the Pokémon Center, and asks Nurse Joy if she remembers him. It turns out that this Nurse Joy isn't the one he met all that time ago, but a new one. She has heard about him though, and tells Misty that she has received an urgent call from Cerulean City. Misty is confused as to why anyone would be calling her from there.
Getting to a phone, Misty finds out the call is from her sisters. It turns out all three are going on an around the world trip that they won in a beauty contest, and therefore need Misty to take over the Gym while they are away. Misty can't believe what she's hearing, and is angry when Ash and Brock comment on how lucky the sisters are winning the trip as doesn't see why she's expected to just take over the Gym, even if it is on a temporary basis. Just then Nurse Joy arrives with another surprise for Misty... her bike! It turns out the previous Nurse Joy was able to fix it and it's as good as new. Seeing the bike brings back a lot of memories for Misty, and remembers how her journey with Ash began, with him stealing the bike only to end up destroying it. Ash happily comments that now Misty can get back to Cerulean City even quicker which just makes Misty's already foul mood worse, and thinking that Ash wants her gone, angrily leaves the Pokémon Center. Ash is confused by Misty's reaction, and Brock points out that Misty may have expected to continue traveling with them.
Misty wanders the streets of Viridian City very sadly, and comments on how Ash doesn't seem to care that the gang that have been through so much together are now splitting up. Waiting for her on the street, however, are three men. They ask Misty if all her friends have abandoned her. Misty really isn't in the mood and angrily asks who they are, and three introduce themselves as Viridian City's top trainers; Kim, Kail and Kai... the Invincible Pokémon Brothers! Misty can't be bothered with their theatrics, and asks if they want a Pokémon battle. All three brothers are intrigued.
Going to a nearby field, the rules are declared to be a one-on-one and Kim is up first. He sends out a Hitmonchan and Misty responds by sending out Politoed. Misty orders a Water Gun, and Politoed is able to knock Hitmonchan to the ground easily. Kail and Kai send out their Pokémon, a Hitmonlee and a Hitmontop. The three fighting Pokémon surround Politoed and Misty complains that she can't battle against them three-on-one. However she is saved when Ash and Brock arrive to make the match fair. Pikachu is able to get Hitmontop with a Thunderbolt and Brock sends out Forretress and it gets Hitmonlee with a Rapid Spin. Misty is glad to see her friends again, but angrily tells them she could have handled it. Ash and Brock tell her that they know she could, but they wanted one last battle with the three of them. Ash also tells Misty that she's a great Water Pokémon Trainer and he knows she can win the battle. Misty is touched by Ash's kind words, and with their friendship restored, the three trainers easily knock out all the Template:Type2 Pokémon, much to the brothers' dismay.
Not far away, however, is Team Rocket. After deciding to show how a real team of three losers operates, Wobbuffet presses a button which causes two goals to appear on opposite ends of the field and come together trapping Ash, Misty, Brock, the three brothers and all the Pokémon inside. It turns out that the three brothers were hired by Team Rocket to take care of the twerps and since they failed not only will they not be getting paid (not that they were going to pay anyway), but now they were be taking their Pokémon as well as all the twerps. However it turns out that Kim has a pair of scissors handy and cuts the net away, releasing the brothers who quickly surround Jessie, James and Meowth with their Pokémon. This also allows Ash, Misty and Brock to escape. They order Team Rocket taken care of and with Pikachu, Politoed and Forretress triple-teaming them Team Rocket and the brothers are all sent blasting off.
With the excitement over, Ash tells Misty how great it was watching her battle and she thanks him... but now it's time to be setting off for their homes. On the path, Misty tells Ash not to forget to look after himself and Pikachu and tells Brock to try to not fall in love with all the girls which makes Brock laugh. She also says that she needs to tell Ash one more thing... to keep trying his best. Ash asks what she means, and Misty sadly responds says that it's going to be different without her there...
She then remembers how she first met Ash, accidentally fishing him out of a lake and angrily pointing him in the direction of the Viridian City Pokémon Center. She also remembers all the experiences she's shared with Ash, Brock and Tracey as they traveled through Kanto, the Orange Islands and Johto as well as the joys, the struggles, the triumphs, the fun, the hardships, the excitement and most of all the adventure which now has to end.
She also recalls how it was an accident that she met Togepi, but Ash tells her that he thinks she's wrong that it was an accident that he met her of all people. He tells her that he believes that no matter what, they were always meant to meet and become friends. Brock agrees, and tells them that after all their adventures they've all become best friends. Misty and Ash happily agree and continue down the path.
Eventually the path splits into three with one route heading towards Pallet Town, another heading towards Cerulean City and the third heading towards Pewter City. Ash and Misty start to say their goodbyes, when Brock suddenly butts in telling them that he just remembered that he received an e-mail and needs to return to Pewter City. Ash asks how Brock could forget something like that, and Misty understands that maybe he didn't want to go.
Now the time has come for all three to part ways and head for their respective homes. The three bids each other farewell, and then Misty and Brock set off. With his friends gone, Ash starts to say the words he didn't feel he could... when suddenly Misty and Brock are back in front of him ready to hear it. Ash tells them they shouldn't sneak up on them, and Brock says that they returned to give Ash some presents. Brock gives Ash a small picnic complete with cutlery, while Misty gives him a handkerchief to wrap it in. Ash is touch by their gesture, and begins to cry. With that, the three best friends separate Ash, very upset about his long-time companions leaving, runs the rest of the way home.
After a good night's sleep, Ash and Pikachu are happily tucking into their breakfasts when his mom mentions to Ash that Gary arrived back himself a couple of days ago. Ash is eager to meet up with his former rival and newfound friend and quickly leaves with Pikachu. Delia comments to Mimey that she always misses him when he leaves on an adventure.
Getting to Professor Oak's Laboratory, Ash is dismayed to be told that Gary has already left. Tracey tells Ash that Gary didn't mention where he was going, only that he woke up saying that he was feeling inspired and quickly left before being asked what he meant. Professor Oak mentions that Gary must have wanted to make a fresh start, as he left all of his Pokémon besides his Blastoise at the lab before leaving and that they have no idea when they'll even see him again.
Gary is just about to leave Pallet Town behind when Ash catches up to him. The two friends greet each other warmly, and Ash asks Gary what his hurry is. Gary tells Ash that he just feels he needs to keep moving, and that there's still a lot of traveling to do and lot more to learn about Pokémon. Gary then asks Ash what he plans to do now, and Ash is forced to admit he doesn't know. Gary tells Ash that as he hasn't been home for a long time he should wait a while and really think about it. Gary starts to leave, but now it's Ash's turn to give a present to a departing friend and gives Gary his half of the broken Poké Ball back. Gary thanks Ash, and sets off on his journey.
Sitting on a tree, Ash tells Pikachu he doesn't like the feeling of being alone and still isn't sure about what to do next. Suddenly Ash spots a sparkle in the sky and looks up... to see Ho-Oh! Watching it fly away, Ash notices where it's heading... to the Hoenn region. He knows that Hoenn has a lot of Pokémon he's never seen before, and a lot of battles awaiting him. Suddenly Ash feels his spirit return, and decides to do like Gary and make a fresh start and head to Hoenn! He starts to run home... and falls into a classic Team Rocket pitfall trap.
The motto is performed as always, and James mentions that the pit is extra deep and three have gone back to the classic plan of snaring Pikachu. James commands Weezing to send a SmokeScreen down the pit. Soon the entire area is filled with smoke causing Ash and Pikachu to start choking. Ash tries to think of something to do, and remembers Misty and Brock's final words and parting gifts. He gets an idea, and after fishing them out of his bag, has Pikachu cover it's mouth with the handkerchief while he climbs out with the cutlery given to him by Brock. As he climbs out of the pit, he realizes that he is never alone and that his friends will always be with him. Getting out of the pit, Ash confronts Team Rocket and sends them blasting off again courtesy of Pikachu's Thunderbolt. Ash knows that one journey is over, another one is about to begin.
Back home, Ash tells Professor Oak and Tracey that he has decided to do the same as Gary and leave all of his Pokémon besides Pikachu at the lab. Professor Oak guesses that Ash is heading to Hoenn and Ash tells him that he plans to meet Professor Birch in Littleroot Town. Tracey agrees with Ash's idea and reassures him that he'll look after all his Pokémon while he is away. Ash thanks his friend, when Delia arrives with new clothes for her son having guessed he would be leaving soon. She also has his ticket for the ferry that departs from the Seafoam Islands. Professor Oak gives Ash a brand new Pokédex that contains all the information on the Pokémon that reside in the Hoenn region. With a renewed sense of determination, Ash gets ready to set off Hoenn knowing that a brand new set of adventures await him.
- Daisy, Violet, and Lily give Gym Leader status to Misty.
- Misty gets her bike back, now mended.
- Ash, Brock and Misty go their separate ways.
- Ash sees Ho-Oh again.
- Ash leaves all his Pokémon besides Pikachu at Professor Oak's lab.
- Ash changes his clothes and receives a new Pokédex.
- Ash heads for Hoenn.
- Nurse Joy
- Professor Oak
- Invincible Pokémon Brothers
- Erika (Flashback; Japanese version only)
- Pikachu (Ash's)
- Meowth (Team Rocket)
- Togepi (Misty's)
- Wobbuffet (Jessie's)
- Squirtle (Ash's; flashback)
- Lapras (Ash's; flashback)
- Politoed (Misty's)
- Vulpix (Brock's; flashback)
- Forretress (Brock's)
- Weezing (James's)
- Mr. Mime (Delia's)
- Ho-Oh (Ho-Oh)
- Hitmonchan (Kim's)
- Hitmonlee (Kail's)
- Hitmontop (Kai's)
- Sentret (×3; flashback)
- Gloom (Erika's; flashback, Japanese version only)
- The name of this episode refers to the original catchphrase of the Pokémon series, "Gotta Catch 'em All!"
- Delia mispronounces the Seafoam Islands as "The Seaform Islands" in reference to the tickets.
- Professor Oak's eyebrows are mistakenly colored gray when he gives Ash his new Hoenn Pokédex.
- Pikachu disappeared when Ash is looking for the Poké Ball he and Gary fought over in the beginning of their journey.
- The flashback about the good times Misty spent with her friends is different in both versions: the dubbed English flashback pushes PokéShipping while the original Japanese flashback focuses on Misty's accomplishments as a Pokémon trainer and as a friend, and even ends with a group shot of Ash, Pikachu, Misty, Togepi, Brock, and Tracey (specifically created for this episode). The original flashback plays a really dramatic piece of music, while the dub flashback plays a brand new vocal song:
- Goodbye, funny how that's such a hard thing to say.
- Now it's time to let go but... never thought I'd feel this way.
- Promised not to be sad but... we both knew I was lying.
- Gotta fight back the tears cause can't let you see me crying
- You're more than just my best friend
- What makes me misty most of all,
- In our final curtain call,
- Is knowing that I won't see you again.
In other languages
- Dutch: Ik zie je later!
- French: Les adieux
- German: Auf Wiedersehen, Freunde!
- Hebrew: אנחנו עוד נתראה anakhnu od nitra'é
- Italian: Addii e partenze
- Portuguese (Brazilian): A Gente se Vê Depois!
- Iberian Spanish: ¡Ya te cogeré más tarde!
- Latin American Spanish: ¡Hasta pronto amigos!
|This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.|