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| As Cold as Pryce
Inomoo and Yanagi of the Winter!
|| February 21, 2002
| United States
|| March 1, 2003
|| Team Ota
|| 武上純希 Junki Takegami
|| 藤本義孝 Yoshitaka Fujimoto
| Assistant director
|| 大町繁 Shigeru Ōmachi
| Animation director
|| 酒井啓史 Hiroshi Sakai
| Additional credits
As Cold as Pryce (Japanese: イノムーとふゆのヤナギ！ Inomoo and Yanagi of the Winter!) is the 237th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on February 21, 2002 and in the United States on March 1, 2003.
Finally setting foot in Mahogany Town, Ash is anxious to set about winning his next badge. When he finally locates the town gym leader, Pryce, he is surprised to recognize the man, having previously exchanged differing opinions on the proper nature of relationships between Pokémon and trainer. The embittered gym leader maintains his position that Pokémon must be controlled rather than trusted, must remain servants and never friends. When a natural catastrophe sends Ash and Pryce hurtling deep into the depths of the earth—and equally deep into the recesses of this gym leader's mysterious past—the two confront the Piloswine that loyally served Pryce long ago. In this lost Pokémon Ash recognizes the seed that might bring about a change of heart in Pryce.
With the Red Gyarados ordeal over, Ash decides to challenge the Gym Leader Pryce but he isn’t in there. A lady named Sheila tells Ash and his friends that Pryce goes up to the mountains every morning to meditate under a waterfall. They hurry after her. Meanwhile, Jessie, James, and Meowth; who were waiting at the gym, tail them. After finally catching up with Sheila, they see Pryce. Ash is shocked to see that Pryce is the man who saved them on the bridge in the previous episode. Pryce says that it would be pointless to battle Ash, because his emotional bonds with his Pokémon have dulled their senses. After Ash protests, Pryce sends out his Dewgong. He tells Ash that if he can beat Dewgong, he will get his Gym battle.
Ash battles him with Phanpy and quickly loses. Pryce leaves after the battle, with Ash following close behind. Sheila yells that it's dangerous to go into the mountains alone. Team Rocket, who witnessed the whole battle, follow Ash. Soon, Ash gets separated from Pikachu, and Team Rocket from one another. Jessie spots Ash and starts the motto, and when James says his line they realize that they were both in the same bush. The chase for Pikachu eventually leads to the edge of a cliff, where Ash is cornered. Suddenly, Pryce appears and calls Team Rocket idiots for trying to forcibly steal someone else's Pokémon. Weezing launches a SmokeScreen, sending Ash, Pryce, and Pikachu over the cliff.
Ash sends out Noctowl to help Pryce and Totodile to break their fall using Water Gun. At the top of the cliff, Team Rocket is arguing over whose idea the SmokeScreen was, when Misty, Brock, and Sheila appear. Brock asks if they saw Ash, and Jessie and James run away, leaving Meowth to spill the beans. Sheila sees a small gully for them to climb down. At the bottom of the cliff, Pryce makes a spicy herbal medicine to restore Totodile's energy, having exhausted itself from the Water Gun. Pryce thanks Ash for how his Pokémon reacted under duress, but that as close as he is with them, he must retain strict discipline.
Back up at the top, Sheila explains that Pryce used to love his Pokémon. Because he treated his Pokémon so coldly, and his favoring of the Ice type, people began calling him "Icy Pryce". As she, Brock, and Misty, descend the cliff, Pryce sees an old leg bracelet, which he says belonged to his Piloswine. Now at the bottom, Sheila explains that Pryce once had a Piloswine, that one day just left. Pryce elaborates to Ash, saying that he and Piloswine were once in a national tournament against a Magmar. He and Piloswine were both badly injured, as Pryce ran to protect it.
One night, Piloswine just left the snowbound cottage they were recovering in, and Pryce never saw it again. Ever since, Pryce stopped treating Pokémon as friends. They soon enter a cave covered in a thin layer of ice. Ash sees a figure frozen in the ice. With a shock Pryce realizes it is his Piloswine! Pryce notices that it's holding herbs used to treat burns. Ash deduces that it got trapped after looking for herbs to help his friend. Ash then uses Cyndaquil's Flamethrower and Pikachu's ThunderShock to revive Piloswine. Piloswine still remembers Pryce, to the old man's delight. Pryce tells Piloswine to use Rest, and explains to Ash what that move does.
They then exit the cave and reunite with Sheila, Misty, and Brock. Sheila is also excited to see Piloswine again. Just then, Team Rocket descends, and starts another battle. Pryce takes Arbok and Weezing head on with Piloswine, and beats them both. Pikachu sends them off again, and everyone celebrates. Back at the Gym, Pryce tells Ash that he will battle him tomorrow.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
TV episode debuts
Who's That Pokémon?: Magneton (US and international), Dewgong (Japan)
- Having Pryce's bitter attitude explained by a haunted past might have been a throwback to the Pokémon Adventures manga.
- The episode's English title is derived from the phrase "as cold as ice".
- In this episode, Team Rocket uses a variation of their motto.
- Pryce is shown meditating under a waterfall, which is what Chuck is shown doing in the Generation IV games.
- Meowth references the Miracle on Ice, which was when the US Hockey Team defeated the Soviet Union in the Medal Round of the 1980 Winter Olympics at Lake Placid, New York.
- Music from Mewtwo Strikes Back can be heard in this episode.
- During the Who's That Pokémon?, the clue says "This Pokémon is composed of three Magnemites" with the incorrect plural for Magnemite. The correct plural form for Magnemite, as with all Pokémon, would simply be Magnemite.
- When Team Rocket trips over a rock, Wobbuffet's foot is seen, but in the next shot, Wobbuffet isn't present.
- When Pryce tells Piloswine to use Rest and Ash asks what it is, Pryce says its an "ability that Piloswine can use" when it's actually a move.
In other languages