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| Date Expectations
Roll! Loving Donfan!
|| February 10, 2005
| United States
|| April 1, 2006
|| Team Ota
|| 大橋志吉 Yukiyoshi Ōhashi
|| 秦義人 Yoshito Hata
| Assistant director
|| 秦義人 Yoshito Hata
| Animation director
|| 志村泉 Izumi Shimura
| Additional credits
Date Expectations (Japanese: ころがれ！恋するドンファン！ Roll! Loving Donfan!) is the 114th episode of the Advanced Generation series, and the 388th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on February 10, 2005, in the United Kingdom on January 30, 2006 and in the United States on April 1, 2006.
May and her friends are headed to Pacifidlog Island for the last Pokémon Contest before the Grand Festival. But their boat has engine trouble and the pilot, Carlos, lands on a nearby island. To reach Pacifidlog in time, our heroes must cross the island to the port and take a ferry. But the island is full of Donphan, and it's breeding season—all the male Donphan perform a Roll Out dance of love to impress the females, which can be dangerous for any Trainers who happen to be in the way!
Along the way, May and her friends cheer on a Donphan who wants to impress a brown female Donphan. Snorunt's Ice Beam turns the ground into an ice skating rink, and Donphan trips. Ash chases Snorunt, who won't go back into its Poké Ball, but just as he gets it back, the Donphan send everyone running! May and Ash make it to the port as the last ferry is about to leave... and May bravely decides to turn around and look for Max.
May's Grand Festival debut will have to wait another year, but everyone is reunited, along with their Donphan friend and the brown Donphan. Donphan does a dance of love that wins her heart, but Team Rocket shows up and captures them both. May, fed up with Team Rocket's constant schemes, calls on her Pokémon to free the Donphan and stop Team Rocket. Once the Donphan are freed, they Roll Out together and Team Rocket blasts off yet again.
Carlos finds May and her friends sadly standing at the port. His boat is fixed, and he takes them to Pacifidlog. Now it's up to May to win her fifth ribbon!
Everyone is going to Pacifidlog Town so May can participate in a Contest. Two islands come into sight, and the engine breaks. They land on the left island while the captain fixes the engine. He tells Ash it might take a few hours to fix, and tells them that if they want to be on time for the Contest, they could take a ferry on the other side of the island.
Soon, they come across a group of Donphan using Rollout, and almost get run over. Brock explains that it is mating season and they are trying to impress the females. The same Donphan rolls towards them again, so they run away and leave the area. When they find a deserted area, they stop to rest.
Suddenly, a female Donphan shows up and a bunch of males come over to impress it. Ash and his friends run away again. They call out Mudkip and Corphish to protect them, since Water types are super effective against Ground types.
While this is going on, Team Rocket watches the Donphan from the top of a hill. As usual, Meowth suggests catching one and giving it to their boss. They start setting up some nets as a female rolls by. They try to figure out where it was going, but get squashed by more males chasing it. Jessie tells James to have Chimecho heal them, but he startles them instead by making it use Astonish.
Ash and friends notice some Donphan with mates up ahead. Everyone comments on them, but another Donphan starts chasing them. The Pokémon attack it, and knock it into a rock. Brock bandages its nose, but suddenly a Shiny Donphan comes over and the injured Donphan chases after it.
Meanwhile, Team Rocket is still trying to catch a Donphan, but they just get squashed.
Ash sees the injured Donphan again as it tries to impress the female, but it just gets knocked out of the way by some other Donphan. As they watch, Snorunt comes out of its Poké Ball and uses Ice Beam. Excited, Ash tells it to use the move again, and it freezes the ground under the Donphan, making them slip. The Shiny female expresses its disapproval and walks away. Max says they shouldn't have brought out Snorunt, so Ash tries to recall it. However, it just runs away so they chase after it.
Meanwhile, Team Rocket has made a pitfall trap, and they're all congratulating each other. Unnoticed, Snorunt walks up and freezes them. Before the ice can melt, more Donphan roll by and crash into them, blasting them off again.
Suddenly, a number of Donphan roll at Ash. Brock and Max run one way, while Ash and May go the other. Ash and May get to the ferry, but May tells Ash that she won't get on, because even though she'll miss the Contest, she won't leave her brother. She remembers leaving her house and promising her mom to take care of Max, and Ash agrees. They head off.
Brock and Max see the injured Donphan, and ask it if it had any luck. It tells them that it didn't.
Meanwhile, May and Ash see the Shiny female. May gives it some Pokémon food and tells it about the injured Donphan. Brock and Max find Ash and May. The injured Donphan also finds the Shiny Donphan and starts using Rollout, but is knocked away by another male. All the other Donphan start rolling around the female, but the injured Donphan gets annoyed and knocks them all away. It starts to roll off with the female, but they both get caught in a net as Team Rocket appears. Ash wants to battle them, but May interrupts and scolds them, complaining that she would be in Pacifidlog if it wasn't for them. Team Rocket gets worried and confused.
May sends out her Pokémon. Beautifly pulls the Donphan away with String Shot, Bulbasaur cuts the net with Razor Leaf, Skitty uses DoubleSlap on them, and Combusken uses Fire Spin. Finally, the two Donphan use Rollout and blast them off again. Everyone thanks them and congratulates the injured Donphan on getting the Shiny female. Both Pokémon smile.
In the evening, they reach the harbor. As they look at Pacifidlog on the horizon, Ash says that they could have done it but May wouldn't get on the boat without Max. Max says sorry but May tells him it's okay and that she was happy that she saw the two Donphan roll in love together.
Suddenly, they hear the captain calling out that he fixed the engine, so they get on board the boat. While they head toward Pacifidlog, the captain says that they are lucky because if he hadn't gotten there then, he would have thought that they got on the ferry. Max tells May that now she can be in the Contest, much to her excitement.
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
Pokémon Trainer's Choice: Lunatone
Chimecho with Wobbuffet's face
- The English dub title is a play on the Charles Dickens novel "Great Expectations".
- The scene with Lucario in the intro was put back (previously edited out with Pikachu using an extended Iron Tail instead) starting with this episode, as it was now officially revealed.
- When Team Rocket was blasting off at the end of the episode, Chimecho's face was similar to Wobbuffet's.
- This is the first episode to use music from Camp Pikachu and Pikachu's Rescue Adventure, in that order. However, the background music is replaced in the dub.
- Ash thinking back his Phanpy foreshadows its rejoining to Ash's team in The Right Place and the Right Mime.
- After being flattened by the Donphan, James appeared to be in perfect condition as he let out his Chimecho. In the very next scene, he is back to looking roughed up.
- In the same scene, the sound of Wobbuffet's Poké Ball opening can be heard despite Wobbuffet already being outside, out of the screen.
- In the scene where Ash learns that Snorunt can use Ice Beam, the bandaged Donphan seems to change positions, then go back to the other spot, when on the icy ground.
- In the Dutch dub, Ash calls his Pokédex Dextette, even though it has a male voice.
- Brock refers to Ash's Snorunt as male in the English dub.
In other languages