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| Snow Way Out!
Iwark as a Bivouac
|| October 5, 1998
| United States
|| December 18, 1999
|| Team Ota
|| 米村正二 Shōji Yonemura
|| 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
| Assistant director
|| 井上修 Osamu Inoue
| Animation director
|| 梶浦紳一郎 Shin'ichirō Kajiura
| Additional credits
Snow Way Out! (Japanese: イワークでビバーク Iwark as a Bivouac) is a special episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on October 5, 1998, following Holiday Hi-Jynx, and in the United States on December 18, 1999. It was initially intended to be the 40th episode of the Pokémon anime, airing in Japan on January 6, 1998, but was rescheduled following the EP038 incident.
Continuing their journey, Ash and gang find themselves at a fork in the road. They make the fateful decision to climb a steep and dangerous mountain taking them even deeper into the woods. Pikachu gets lost and they must all work together to find him, stay warm and weather the storm.
As Ash, Misty, Brock and Pikachu continue on their journey, they come across a fork in the road. The trail to the right leads into a huge mountain. Ash's dense self decides to take the trail that goes into the mountain, and the others follow him. They then come across a very steep, snowy path that Misty claims they will need a ski-lift to get them to the top. Misty and Brock both want to turn around and go the other way, but Ash is different, and he claims that a Pokémon Master always stays on course, no matter what the conditions, and that he won't let a little pile of snow stop him. The simple mountain they have stumbled upon turns out to be a huge mountain range.
As the gang heads up the trail through the mountain, with Misty and Brock wearing blankets (and are still freezing) because they are so cold, and Brock's compass is going crazy. He then figures out that the mountain has so much iron, it's throwing the needle off. They then realize that if the compass doesn't work, it will be difficult to find their way. But Brock says that if the sun is up in the position it's in at 3:00, and according to his calculations... they're lost. Misty shouts at Ash to get them off the mountain, and he sends out his Pidgeotto to find a trail that will lead them off the mountain. Pidgeotto flies around and eventually finds one, and it flies back to Ash and his friends, and points them in the direction of the trail. They then follow Pidgeotto while it guides them.
The camera pans over to a wide shot of Team Rocket, and the scene has transitioned. James and Meowth hug each other because they are both freezing, but not Jessie- as it turns out she loves the snow. James can't believe it, and Jessie says that it brings back memories. She then can't believe that James and Meowth haven't ever had a "snowgasboard" (a reference to "Smorgasboard"). She says that it was one of the few memories of her wretched and poverty-stricken childhood. The scene cuts to a flashback of Jessie as a little girl, and her foster mother calls her inside for her Snowgasboard. It contains: snow onigiri with snow sauce, a sampler of sushi-snow rolls, snow potatoes with sour cream and for dessert: a bowl of her favorite snow pudding. Jessie reminisces about her happy experiences, as James and Meowth think she is joking. Jessie says that snow food is low in fat and it helped her maintain her self-proclaimed fabulous figure. She then reminisces further about snow potatoes mixed with soy sauce, and that only fresh snow will do. James and Meowth are grossed out. James then says that they can head off Ash and his friends using the Meowth balloon. They then recite their motto. While reciting it, the balloon has drifted off and is now way up in the air. They chase after it without any luck.
The scene transitions to black clouds which could only mean one thing on a snowy mountain: a potential blizzard. The scene transitions again to our heroes as it starts to snow. They realize that the sky was clear just a little while ago and that the weather is totally unpredictable on this mountain. They know they have to get moving fast before a snow storm hits.
The scene transitions to Team Rocket again as the balloon is almost out of sight. All of their food and supplies are on that balloon. Jessie starts to look at the snow and then tells them she can make snow rolls. James and Meowth don't want them, and Jessie wants to walk further to where the balloon is so she can get some soy sauce. Meowth says that he would rather have ketchup on his snow rolls.
The scene cuts to Ash, Misty and Brock braving what used to be light snow has now turned into a full-on blizzard. They start to contemplate setting up camp, but Ash, as diligent as ever, argues that the trail leading them out of the mountain is probably close by. Brock reminds him that the sun is going to set soon, and not even the bravest Pokémon Trainer would wander around in a snowstorm in the dark. Ash agrees, and as Brock says they should start to dig a cave, the snowstorm starts to intensify and the intense wind knocks Ash down, and he lets go of Pikachu and the Mouse Pokémon is blown away, completely out of sight. Ash chases after Pikachu and Misty wants to stop Ash, but Brock stops her and the storm starts to intensify even more.
As Ash walks through deep snow while repeatedly calling for Pikachu in the brutal snowstorm, he collapses. Then he hears something: Pikachu's voice. Ash calls back to Pikachu, Pikachu responds, and Ash follows the direction of Pikachu's voice. As he walks, he falls down a small cliff. He then hears Pikachu's voice close by. He then sees the small yellow Pokémon and he is hanging by one arm from a wedge on a very high cliff. Ash tries to grab Pikachu, but he falls down the cliff, yet manages to grab onto another wedge. Ash thinks and comes up with a solution: Bulbasaur. He sends it out and it uses Vine Whip to grab Pikachu. But Pikachu cannot hold on and he falls down the cliff again. Bulbasaur acts fast and grabs Pikachu with its vines just in the nick of time. They pull Pikachu up to their level and Pikachu and Ash embrace. Pikachu does a facial expression of Brock and in doing so, he reminds Ash that they need to get up the small cliff Ash fell down before and get back to Misty and Brock. He tries climbing up the cliff, but to no avail. He tries calling their names, but this doesn't work either. Ash then comes up with an idea to dig a snow cave. He then sends out Charmander and it uses Flamethrower to blast through the snow. It does a good job of building the cave and then, Ash sends out Bulbasaur and Squirtle to help seal the cave off from the ferocious snowstorm. It takes them a while, but they do it. Ash then tries to figure out how to heat up the cave. Bulbasaur suggests to Charmander to make its tail flame more intense, and it does so.
- Most of the next scene was cut for the dub, so there are some parts that only appear in the original Japanese version. The sections in bold are the Japanese version only.
The scene transitions to Team Rocket inside an igloo. James wonders how they are going to survive, while Meowth holds a match (a candle in the dub) that blows out. Jessie has 2 snow rolls in hand, and she proclaims it is dinner time. While Meowth lights another match, James asks if she has anything else to eat other than snow rolls. Jessie says it is the only thing, and she says it is good for them. Then she asks James to eat them. He declines her offer. Meowth's match blows out, and it lights another one. They ask Jessie if she has any more food. She says she does, she has more snow rolls. James then says he is not in the mood for frozen food. Meowth then tells them that all they have left are burnt-out matches, and James says that if they use their imagination, they can pretend they are heating lamps and that will be enough to keep them warm. Meowth then lights another match, and the camera moves in on him and the scene transitions. Meowth imagines himself bathing in a hot spring. James imagines himself sitting in a beach chair, on the beach, tanning. Jessie then imagines herself in thick clothing, sitting in a desert with heaters around her. The scene transitions back to the igloo and Jessie is holding another lit match, which goes out, and she sees that James and Meowth have fallen asleep. She slaps them around and they wake up. They then fall asleep again and she shouts at them to wake up, or they will freeze to death. She slaps them around some more.
As the brutal snowstorm rages on, the scene transitions back to Ash's cave where he and 4 of his Pokémon are staying. Ash wonders where Misty and Brock are and how they are doing. But there is a new problem: After a long time of keeping the others warm, Charmander's tail flame starts to weaken. Charmander is exhausted after it used up all of its flame. Ash tells Charmander to get back into its Poké Ball, but it refuses, but Ash calls it back anyway, much to Charmander's shock. Ash then figures that the Pokémon should be warm inside their Poké Balls. So, he tells Bulbasaur and Squirtle back into their Poké Balls, and like Charmander, they refuse too. Ash calls them back anyway, much to their shock. Ash then attempts to call Pikachu back into his Poké Ball, but Pikachu refuses, and he clings onto Ash. Ash is touched by Pikachu's gesture of trying to keep his Trainer warm and he accepts his decision.
As the time passes, Ash and Pikachu are freezing cold, and Ash wonders if his other Pokémon are warm enough inside their Poké Balls. But now, the snowstorm has gotten so bad that a part of the snow wall has broken through. Ash runs over to the hole and sits in front of it, blocking the snow coming in, and Ash is already struggling to cope with the extremely intense cold weather. Now that the situation has become this bad, Ash tells Pikachu to get inside his Poké Ball. Pikachu again refuses, worrying for Ash's safety and Ash assures Pikachu he will be okay, as long as he knows Pikachu will be safe. Finally, Ash orders Pikachu to get inside the Poké Ball. Pikachu refuses once more. Then, the rest of Ash's Pokémon- Bulbasaur, Charmander, Squirtle and Pidgeotto- all free themselves from their Poké Balls and hold on to Ash. Ash is so taken aback by his Pokémon's commitment to him that he is reduced to tears. He then looks at them and says, "You win. Guess we'll be cold... all together. That's right... We'll be cold all together."
It is now morning and the harsh snowstorm has completely subsided. Charmander demolishes the snow wall with Flamethrower, and Ash looks upon the amazing view with his beloved Pokémon. He hears a voice calling him, he turns around, and it is Misty, Brock and his Onix. He is very happy to see his friends again. Onix lifts Ash and his Pokémon up to his friends' level. They ask Ash how he survived the storm and he tells them about the cave he dug. Brock and Misty then reveal that Onix dug into an underground hot spring, and they were very comfortable there, much to Ash's extreme surprise. They then discover that the blizzard blew over Team Rocket's balloon, which is right next to them. Brock says it is out of fuel, but he sends out his Vulpix, and has it use Flamethrower, and the balloon is now flyable. They then fly off over the mountain range.
The scene cuts to Team Rocket pinching each other's cheeks, and they then see Ash and his friends in the Meowth balloon, and they chase after them. They then fall into a hot spring and are declined to move, they are very comfortable. Ash thinks he heard Team Rocket while the balloon files above them, and then, they see a town ahead and are overjoyed.
Meanwhile, Team Rocket discover that the hot spring is too hot for them to sit in, but the weather is too cold for them to get out. The episode ends with Team Rocket's usual "We're all washed up!" line.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
Who's That Pokémon?: Muk (US and international), Pidgeotto (Japan)
- After the hiatus caused by EP038, the show moved from Tuesday to Thursday. The original schedule was as follows:
|| English title
|| Japanese title
|| Planned broadcast
|| Actual broadcast
|| Holiday Hi-Jynx
|| December 23, 1997
|| October 5, 1998
|| Snow Way Out!
|| January 6, 1998
|| October 5, 1998
|| The Battling Eevee Brothers
|| January 13, 1998
|| April 16, 1998
|| Wake Up, Snorlax!
|| January 20, 1998
|| April 23, 1998
|| Showdown at Dark City
|| January 27, 1998
|| April 30, 1998
|| March of the Exeggutor Squad
|| February 3, 1998
|| May 7, 1998
|| The Problem with Paras
|| February 10, 1998
|| May 14, 1998
|| Princess vs. Princess
|| March 3, 1998
|| July 9, 1998
|| The Purr-fect Hero
|| May 5, 1998
|| July 9, 1998
- It was planned to be followed by a clip show summing up EP028 to Holiday Hi-Jynx, then planned as EP039, on its original airing.
- When episodes of the dub are aired in order, this episode and Holiday Hi-Jynx are placed between It's Mr. Mime Time and Showdown at the Po-ké Corral, as this is the point at which the episodes first aired in Japan. This causes confusion from viewers due to Ash using Charmander instead of Charizard and Misty still having her Starmie and Horsea (and not having her Togepi). Canonically, these episodes go either directly before or directly after Pikachu's Goodbye.
- Due to not airing when initially intended, it is considered by Bulbapedia to be a special episode.
- The dub episode title is a pun of the phrase "no way out".
- Snow Way Out is also the name of a Mario Party 8 minigame.
- This is one of the few episodes where Ash orders Pikachu into a Poké Ball. Though he doesn't succeed as usual, the fact that he tried is unusual.
- This is also the first episode where a previously captured Pokémon, other than Psyduck, forces its way out of a Poké Ball. Charmander, Squirtle, Bulbasaur, and Pidgeotto all exit their Poké Balls to keep Ash warm throughout the night.
- This episode is featured on Volume 9: Charmander from Viz Media's Pokémon All-Stars series.
- The Pokémon Junior book, "A Pokémon Snow-Down" was based on this episode.
- Pikachu did a Mimicry of Brock in this episode.
- Parts of this episode were reanimated and used for flashback material for The Fires of a Red-Hot Reunion.
- When James is holding Meowth and they are shivering, Meowth's feet don't have the orange tips.
- Shortly after, Meowth's forepaws are entirely orange.
- In the final scene of the episode, Jessie's lipstick disappears for a spilt second.
- Jessie's caretaker is referred to as her mother in the dub.
- The igloo scene was heavily edited. There is a scene cut of Meowth lighting candles with a match while Jessie explains how good the snow-rolls were, and all the shots of Meowth and Jessie holding matches in the igloo scene were painted out and replaced with candles. Altogether, 24 seconds were cut from this scene.
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