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Challenge of the Samurai
Challenge of the Samurai Boy
First broadcast
Japan April 22, 1997
United States September 11, 1998
English themes
Opening Pokémon Theme
Japanese themes
Opening めざせポケモンマスター
Ending ひゃくごじゅういち
Animation Team Ota
Screenplay 園田英樹 Hideki Sonoda
Storyboard 鈴木敏明 Toshiaki Suzuki
Assistant director 大原実 Minoru Ōhara
Animation director 平岡正幸 Masayuki Hiraoka
No additional credits are available at this time.

Challenge of the Samurai (Japanese: サムライしょうねんのちょうせん! Challenge of the Samurai Boy), was the fourth episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on April 22, 1997 and in USA on September 11, 1998.

In this episode, Ash is challenged to his first Pokémon battle against another trainer in the Viridian Forest; but wild Pokémon disrupt the battle and kidnap Ash's Metapod! Can he rescue it?

201 Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details. 201


Ash and Misty are traveling through Viridian Forest, when the young Trainer from Pallet Town spots a Weedle and decides to capture it. Pikachu sleeps rather than battling, but Ash defeats it with Pidgeotto. Misty is asked by a Samurai if she is from Pallet Town, to which she answers no. He then finds Ash and challenges him to a duel as he's about to catch the Weedle. The Weedle is lost and the Samurai scolds Ash. They battle and the Samurai's Pinsir defeats Ash's Pidgeotto, but breaks its pincers on Metapod's cocoon. Then a swarm of Beedrill appears and takes Metapod. Ash, Misty and the Samurai run for cover. The next day Ash goes to the Kakuna hive to take Metapod but Team Rocket wake up the Beedrill. Ash dives for cover and finds Metapod. Then he vows never to leave any of his friends or Pokémon behind. The Beedrill attack again but Metapod throws itself in the way of the stinger breaking his cocoon, and evolves into a Butterfree. Ash commands Butterfree to use Sleep Powder and the Beedrill are put to sleep. The Samurai and Ash part as friends and promise to battle again.

Major events

  • Ash's Metapod evolves into Butterfree.
  • Ash and Misty reach Pewter City.





Who's That Pokémon?: Metapod


  • This is the first episode in which Ash battles another trainer.
  • This is the first time Team Rocket begin their motto with "Prepare for trouble and make it double."
  • Samurai is the first supporting character in the anime who never appears again.


  • Samuri's Pinsir defeated Ash's Pidgeotto with Tackle. In the games, Pinsir cannot learn the move in any of the generations released so far.

Dub edits

  • Ash getting in a cow costume and suggesting that a bug is a "cowterpie" makes more sense in the Japanese pun: Misty says "Mushi! Mushi! Mushi! ...Mushi!" which means "Bug! Bug! Bug! ...Bug!". Ash then says "Ushi?", the Japanese for cow.
  • When Ash, Misty and Samurai are sleeping down for the night and Ash is wide awake worrying about Metapod, his Japanese name, Satoshi, is written on his sleeping bag and not painted over.

In other languages

  • French: Le défi du Samouraï
  • Italian: La sfida di Samurai
  • Portuguese (Brazil): O Desafio do Samurai
  • Spanish: El Desafío Del Samurai


Project Anime logo.png This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.