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| Shapes of Things to Come!
Kurogane Gym! Hyouta VS Shinji!!
|| January 11, 2007
| United States
|| June 27, 2007
|| Team Iguchi
|| 冨岡淳広 Atsuhiro Tomioka
|| 秦義人 Yoshito Hata
| Assistant director
|| 秦義人 Yoshito Hata
| Animation director
|| 志村泉 Izumi Shimura
| Additional credits
Shapes of Things to Come! (Japanese: クロガネジム！ヒョウタＶＳシンジ！！ Kurogane Gym! Hyouta VS Shinji!!) is the 15th episode of the Diamond & Pearl series, and the 481st episode of the Pokémon anime. It first aired in Japan on January 11, 2007 and in the United States on June 27, 2007.
Ash and his friends have reached Oreburgh City, where Ash will try to earn his first Sinnoh Gym Badge. But Paul has beaten him to the Oreburgh Gym, and he'll battle Gym Leader Roark first—if Roark ever shows up! Roark is also a mining foreman who's busy excavating for buried fossils and coal ore. In fact, Ash and company locate him just as he's uncovered another fossil find. The fossils he discovers can be revived at the local museum, which has Team Rocket sensing another great opportunity to score some Pokémon for their Boss.
Roark returns to the Gym to battle Paul in a 3-on-3 battle. The Oreburgh Gym is a Rock-type Gym, so Paul has an Azumarill to counter Roark's Geodude. Even though Azumarill should have the advantage, Geodude quickly knocks it out, and Paul is not pleased! Paul's Elekid defeats Geodude, only to have trouble with Roark's deceptively fast Onix. Paul switches Elekid out for Chimchar and beats Onix, but now Roark brings out a Cranidos.
Paul lets Chimchar take some hits so it can power up using its Blaze ability, yet even that doesn't stop Cranidos. Finally it's all up to Elekid, and it emerges victorious after the tough battle. Paul has earned his badge—along with a whole heap of hard feelings from Ash! Ash doesn't like the way Paul treats his Pokémon, and he likes it even less when Paul wants to leave without seeing Ash battle! But will Ash's wounded pride backfire on him?
Ash, Dawn, and Brock arrive at Oreburgh City and reach the Oreburgh Gym. Before he can enter, however, Paul and an older man walk out of the Gym. Ash asks if Paul has challenged the Gym Leader yet, but Paul looks distastefully at Ash and says that the Gym Leader isn't even there. The older man explains that the Gym Leader is not at the Gym. The man then goes onto tell Ash that the Gym use Rock Pokémon. Ash is surprised by this, and the comment catches Paul's attention. At this, Paul abruptly decides to go find a Pokémon Center, and as he walks away Ash wishes him luck. Paul smirks and continues walking.
Inside, the man gives Ash a Badge case to keep all the Badges he will receive in Sinnoh. Ash thanks him, and then asks where the Gym Leader, Roark, has gone. He explains that Roark has gone to the Oreburgh Mines, and Brock tells Ash that this city's main resource is the coal and various minerals that it gets through the large mine. At the mine, we see several large and strong Fighting-type Pokémon carrying materials and equipment through the mine and outside area. Also at the mine is Team Rocket in disguise, who recite their motto while pretending to dig for coal. Ash, Dawn and Brock walk up and interrupt their conversation, thinking that they are workers at the mine. Ash asks where Roark is, and Jessie tries to think of a way to get out of talking to them in fear of revealing themselves.
At this, two men pushing forward a mining cart with a huge lump of rock in it walk out of the mine, followed by Roark who asks for them to wait. Roark walks over to the mining cart, and begins to rub the large stone that it is carrying, smiling as the rock appears to have some sort of face. As the cart is taken away, Roark asks who Ash and his friends are. Ash asks if he is the Gym Leader, saying that he's come to challenge him for a Gym Badge. Roark smiles and is embarrassed and he starts rubbing the back of his head remembering that as a Gym Leader, he has to be available to take Gym Challenges. However, he was so preoccupied with his latest discovery that he just forgot: the rock in the mining cart could actually have contained a real Pokémon that had been fossilized a long time ago.
Back at the Gym, Roark explains his discovery to the old man, who is his referee, at the desk, saying that he found something amazing. At this, Paul walks into the Gym and walks over to Roark, saying that he's ready for his Gym Challenge. At the Gym Battle Field, the field opens up to reveal a large rocky field, which impresses Dawn. Brock explains that Gym Leaders often have Gym fields that suit their Pokémon of choice and this sort of field is perfect for Roark's Rock-type Pokémon. The referee explains that this battle will be a 3 on 3 battle, and at this Roark sends out his first Pokémon, Geodude—a staple for Rock Pokémon Gym Leaders, having been used by both Brock and Roxanne in the past.
Paul then sends out his first Pokémon, Azumarill. Ash remarks that it's a Water-type, the perfect counter to a Rock Pokémon. Paul orders Azumarill to use Hydro Pump but this is deflected perfectly by Geodude using Hidden Power. Azumarill is sent flying, and Roark uses this to his advantage to tell Geodude to use Rollout to attack again. Geodude does so, smashing right into Azumarill and sending it flying again. Azumarill smashes right into the ground, and is declared unable to battle by the referee. Dawn is shocked that a Water type would lose to a Rock type, and Brock remarks that he thinks Roark was prepared for people to try to beat him with a Water type and so trained his Pokémon to be able to beat them.
Paul curses Azumarill for its weakness infuriating Ash, and sends out his next Pokémon, Elekid, which surprises Roark. Paul tells his Elekid to attack with Brick Break. Elekid does so, smashing its fist right into Geodude and sending it flying back. The sheer force of the punch knocks Geodude right out, and the referee declares it unable to battle. Roark then sends out his next Pokémon, Onix, which Dawn checks on her Pokédex. Paul tries to get Onix with Brick Break again, but Onix dodges easily.
Onix swings its tail around and brings it down hard on Elekid's head, but Elekid manages to use Protect at the last minute and stop the attack. Onix manages to smash through the Protect however, and Elekid goes flying. Roark then commands Onix to use Stealth Rock. Shards of rock all fly to the edges of the arena and implant themselves into it. Onix then slams right into Elekid with its tail. It jumps back however, as Elekid's Static Ability makes any Pokémon that touches it paralyzed.
The two Pokémon clash again, but Elekid doesn't appear to be able to go on so Paul recalls it back to its Poké Ball to recover. Paul then sends out his next Pokémon, Chimchar, who is instantly attacked by the Stealth Rock. Chimchar is hurt but manages to survive the attack. Paul tells Chimchar to use Dig, and Roark tells Onix to watch out for Chimchar who could appear at any moment. Chimchar appears right below Onix and damaging it much to Roark's surprise. The two continue to battle, but due to Onix's restricted actions due to being paralyzed, Chimchar is able to attack again and again with Dig. Eventually Onix is knocked out and declared unable to battle.
Roark thanks Paul, saying it's been a good battle so far, before sending out his final Pokémon, Cranidos. Paul tells Chimchar to go underground again with Dig, and Roark tells Cranidos to focus and then use Headbutt. Cranidos does so, waiting for Chimchar to emerge and then smashes into it using Headbutt. Paul again tells Chimchar to Dig, but by now Roark has caught onto Paul's plan and tells Cranidos to use Zen Headbutt. It smashes into Chimchar sending it sliding across the ground. Roark tells his Pokémon to attack again, and Paul tries to get Chimchar to dodge with Dig. But, as Brock points out, Zen Headbutt has the side-effect of making a Pokémon Flinch and unable to attack or dodge. Cranidos repeats its attack over and over, battering Chimchar to almost being knocked out. However, at this moment, Chimchar begins to glow a fiery red, signaling the unlocking of its special Ability, Blaze.
As Brock explains, Blaze powers up a Fire-type Pokémon's attacks when they are low on energy. Roark realizes he has to finish this fast, and calls for another Zen Headbutt. Paul then tells Chimchar to use Flame Wheel, and Chimchar runs towards the oncoming Cranidos, turning into a blazing ball of fire. Chimchar smashes straight into and past Cranidos, causing it to reel back in pain at the force of the attack. Chimchar repeats the attack, before going underground for another Dig. Roark tells Cranidos to use Headbutt when Chimchar appears. It does so, smashing Chimchar down into the ground and knocking it out. Paul recalls it into the Poké Ball, angry with it for its defeat and promising to deal with it later.
Paul has one last chance however, and calls out Elekid who is again, attacked by the Stealth Rock laid down by Onix before. Roark tells Cranidos to use Flamethrower, which Elekid dodges before smashing its fist right into Cranidos' knee and causing it to reel back in pain as the Static Ability of Elekid runs through its body and causes it to be paralyzed. Cranidos shakes off the static however, as Roark explains his own Pokémon's special Ability, Mold Breaker. However, just as Cranidos is about to attack, the knee injury that Elekid just gave it kicks in, making it an easy target for Elekid's Thunder Punch attack which smashes right into Cranidos' head.
Cranidos then smacks Elekid square in the chest with a Flamethrower. It then uses Zen Headbutt and Elekid uses Brick Break. The two attacks hit and there is an explosion as both Pokémon are knocked back. The two Pokémon the stand facing each other. Both of them are very tired, but Cranidos falls down first and is declared unable to battle by the Gym's referee.
Roark congratulates Paul for a great battle, and presents him with a Coal Badge for his victory. Ash isn't about to let Paul get all the glory however, and vows to get his first Badge next. The episode ends with Ash and Paul squaring off, their rivalry renewed.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
- Instead of their evolved forms, the character sketch sheet for the arc features Bonsly and Starly along with the main characters.
- Ash's Staravia and Brock's Sudowoodo have been added in the opening.
- Roark being at the coal mines is a reference to his occupation in the Generation IV games, when the player first visits the Gym.
- Music from Destiny Deoxys and Jirachi: Wish Maker is used as background music.
- Professor Oak's Big Pokémon Encyclopedia: Ash's Staravia
- Pokémon senryū: ムックルが ムクムクしんか ムクバード Mukkuru ga, mukumuku shinka, Mukubādo "Mukkuru mukumuku evolved; Mukubird."
- The English dub title is a reference to the 1933 sci-fi novel The Shape of Things to Come by H. G. Wells. This was also used for two future episodes.
- This is one of the few episodes of the Diamond & Pearl series where Dawn's Piplup does not appear.
- This is the first episode where one of Ash's rivals earns a Gym Badge onscreen.
- This episode holds the record of having the most Abilities activated, with a total of four: Elekid's Static, Onix's Rock Head, Chimchar's Blaze, and Cranidos's Mold Breaker.
- Cranidos's Mold Breaker nullifies Elekid's Static. In the games, this would not happen, as Static does not protect Elekid from any kind of moves.
- Team Rocket does not blast off in this episode.
- In this episode, Team Rocket uses a variation of their motto.
- When Team Rocket asks one of the miners if Roark was talking about Fossils coming back to life, the miner refers to Roark as Ian.
- When Roark is stroking the Cranidos fossil and introducing himself to Ash and his friends, his gloves disappear randomly throughout the scene.
- During his battle, Roark asks himself when Elekid's Static on Onix would wear off, which something normally does not occur.
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