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| Tears For Fears!
|| November 8, 2007
| United States
|| April 12, 2008
|| Team Iguchi
|| 松井亜弥 Aya Matsui
|| 小山賢 Masaru Koyama
| Assistant director
|| 小山賢 Masaru Koyama
| Animation director
|| 広岡歳仁 Toshihito Hirooka
| Additional credits
Tears For Fears! (Japanese: ヒコザルの涙！ Hikozaru's Tears!) is the 53rd episode of the Diamond & Pearl series, and the 519th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was originally scheduled to air in Japan on November 1, 2007, but was delayed to November 8 due to baseball. It aired in the US on April 12, 2008. This episode is the start of the eleventh season, Pokémon Diamond & Pearl: Battle Dimension.
As our heroes head towards Veilstone City, Ash's new Chimchar struggles to adapt to its new surroundings. Everything is the complete opposite of life with Paul: mealtimes are fun and everyone treats each other with friendship and kindness! Chimchar still has vivid memories of the lonely and harsh treatment it received from Paul, so this sudden reversal of fortune is nearly too much to take. When Ash even praises Chimchar after it loses a practice battle with Dawn's Piplup, Chimchar breaks down in emotion.
Meowth, who's searching for Team Rocket after their group was split up by some rampaging Zangoose, sees this scene and has a pang of sympathy for Chimchar. That night, Chimchar can't sleep and it finds Meowth sitting in the moonlight. Meowth isn't in the mood for a fight; instead, it gently tells Chimchar to make the best of its new life. Of course, all bets are off the next morning once Meowth rejoins Jessie and James: they catch Dawn and Brock by surprise, then try to steal all of their Pokémon by trapping them in giant canisters!
But when the Zangoose show up, Team Rocket has to hide in the canisters for their own protection. Ash and Chimchar reach the scene and realize the Zangoose are about to knock the canisters off a cliff! Chimchar has encountered Zangoose before and it's still afraid of them. Ash knows this, so he encourages Chimchar and gives it the confidence it needs to take on and defeat the Zangoose. With everyone safe and sound, it's three cheers for Chimchar, who finally feels like a part of its new family!
The episode starts with Ash, Dawn and Brock settling down for lunch while still on the road to Veilstone City. The gang decide to let their Pokémon out for the day, and soon everyone is starting to set up for lunch... everyone except Ash's newly obtained Chimchar who is confused on what to do since everyone is in a happy mood. It remembers meal times with Paul, which involved Paul feeding Chimchar directly from a tin while angrily telling it to hurry up. As everyone else begins eating, Chimchar has to be prompted by Ash making it clear the Pokémon is having trouble adjusting to its new circumstances.
Team Rocket also have their respective Pokémon out of their Poké Balls eating with them, however meal time is interrupted when Seviper notices that three Zangoose are heading their way. They begin fighting furiously and Seviper, despite attacking with venom at its mortal enemies, finds itself outnumbered and outmatched. Jessie returns Seviper to its Poké Ball but it refuses to give up and comes straight back out. Jessie continually tries to get Seviper back into the Poké Ball but to no avail. Then the wild Zangoose send Team Rocket "blasting off again" with Meowth landing in a different area from Jessie and James.
With most of their Pokémon lounging about, Ash and Dawn go for a sparring match all watched by Meowth as he looks for his teammates. Ash uses his Pikachu and Dawn uses her Buizel. After a tough match, the two compliment their Pokémon and Chimchar is reminded again of how it once managed to defeat Elekid during training, but still got scolded by Paul since it didn't access Blaze to do it. Ash and Dawn decide to have another battle using different Pokémon, as Ash selects Chimchar to battle against Dawn's Piplup. Despite putting up a tough fight against Piplup, Chimchar loses the battle causing it to be reminded of losing in the Tag Battle Tournament and being cruelly released by Paul. Ash picks up Chimchar who expects to be criticized, however instead Ash congratulates it on a good battle. This is followed up by compliments from Dawn and Brock as well as cheering from all the other Pokémon. Chimchar is left very nervous and confused, and starts crying since it can't handle the drastic change from a negative owner to positive people. Ash is confused as to why Chimchar would cry when it's getting complimented, and Brock muses that Chimchar mustn't have got many chances to show any emotion while under Paul's ownership. Ash understands, and holds Chimchar while the Chimp Pokémon sobs its heart out. Meowth is also moved by this emotional display and, with tears in his eyes, leaves without incident to continue looking for Jessie and James.
Later, at night, Chimchar has a nightmare about having to fight under Paul's command battling a Graveler. Graveler jumps out against Chimchar and uses Rock Throw, sending boulders flying. Paul orders Chimchar not to move, as his way of trying to force Chimchar to access Blaze. Chimchar's nightmare then switches to the Zangoose fight when it was captured, still with Paul's screaming voice in its head. Chimchar wakes up and, unable to get back to sleep, goes for a walk.
Meowth is still looking for the rest of Team Rocket, when he crosses paths with Chimchar. After convincing it he doesn't want to fight, Meowth tells Chimchar that he knows what it's like to worry, and he dreams of the time when he and the others are finally able to successfully capture Pikachu as then he wouldn't have anything to worry about. Meowth then tells Chimchar it should stop worrying about the past, and instead look to the new, brighter future because it's a very lucky Pokémon. Meowth states to Chimchar that its new friends would do anything, even "give the clothes off their backs" if it really needed it before he leaves. Chimchar is left thoughtful at this new outlook. The next morning, all of the Pokémon start helping out preparing for a meal, and Chimchar is once again left unsure of what to do. Ash calls over to it, asking for help carrying some water from the nearby river to which Chimchar happily agrees to.
Later, in the daytime, Team Rocket is then shown in their balloon, holding Meowth on his rear end with a "plunger". Which Team Rocket state that they were going to steal Ash's Pokémon and that meeting Meowth was just a coincidence. Team Rocket goes through with their plan to capture Ash and his friend's Pokémon. Which they actually capture all of the Pokémon that are out of their Poké Balls and begin to fly off. Dawn tries to make her Pokémon return by using the Poké Ball but this fails. Meowth says the containers are protected from that possibility. So Dawn sends out her Piplup and commands it to use BubbleBeam while Brock orders Croagunk to use Poison Sting. This also fails.
Seviper gets out of its Poké Ball because it senses the three Zangoose once again. The gang of Zangoose climb up a tree to get to the level of Team Rocket's Balloon. Team Rocket's Balloon falls so Team Rocket ironically hide themselves within the containers that they stole Ash, Dawn, and Brock's Pokémon. However this backfires, as the wild Zangoose attack the container attempting to get to Seviper and pushing it close to the edge of a nearby cliff. Ash and Chimchar arrive back and see what's happening, and Ash tells Chimchar to help. However Chimchar is too frightened to fight the wild Zangoose. So Ash gives a little pep-talk to Chimchar, telling it that while he understands Chimchar is scared, the other Pokémon really need help. Chimchar is reminded of the kindness shown by Ash and the others, and Meowth telling it that the group would do anything to help it if they needed to. Ash tells Chimchar not to worry about the power of Blaze, as it just has to believe it can win. As a result, Chimchar becomes motivated to battle against his fear, the Zangoose. Chimchar uses Dig a few times to confuse the Zangoose and then uses Flamethrower to finish them off.
Team Rocket open the container from the inside and try to escape but Ash and Dawn command Pikachu to use Thunderbolt, Chimchar to use Flamethrower, Turtwig to use Razor Leaf, Piplup to use BubbleBeam, and Buneary to use Ice Beam to attack Team Rocket ending the episode by sending Team Rocket blasting off for the second and final time in the episode. Chimchar joins the other Pokémon in their cheering, and with its past completely fading away, the heroes' journey continues!
- Chimchar overcomes its fear of Zangoose.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
Ash with scratches on his shoulder
- Ash's scratch disappears in the next scene.
- In the dub, the narrator says, "With the Eterna City Contest and Tag Battle behind them..." The group has just left from a Contest in Hearthome City, not Eterna. This may be due to script confusion, as the next episode features the Eterna Gym Leader, Gardenia.
- Jessie's Seviper's Japanese voice can be heard during the brawls against Zangoose.
- Meowth looks like he has an eyelash while he is in the tube with the rest of Team Rocket along with their Pokémon.
- In Chimchar's flashback of the Hearthome contest, Chimchar remembers Paul saying, "You are out of here!", when Paul really said, "You're out of here!"
- When Team Rocket blasts off for the last time, Wobbuffet is seen outside of his Poké Ball, yet when they blast off, the Poké Ball release noise is heard before Wobbuffet says his name.
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