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AG180 : May, We Harley Drew'd Ya!
Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire
AG182 : Channeling the Battle Zone!
Thinning the Hoard!
AG181   EP455
Haruka VS Harley! Stage On with a Double Battle!!
First broadcast
Japan June 22, 2006
United States December 12, 2006
English themes
Opening Battle Frontier
Ending Pokémon Go!
Japanese themes
Opening スパート!
Ending 私、負けない! ~ハルカのテーマ~
Animation Team Iguchi
Screenplay 冨岡淳広 Atsuhiro Tomioka
Storyboard 日高政光 Masamitsu Hidaka
Assistant director ながはまのりひこ Norihiko Nagahama
Animation director 山下惠 Megumi Yamashita
Additional credits

Thinning the Hoard! (Japanese: ハルカVSハーリー!ダブルバトルでステージ・オン!! Haruka VS Harley! Stage On with a Double Battle!!) is the 181st episode of Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire, and the 455th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on June 22, 2006 and in the United States on December 12, 2006.

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


May, Drew, Harley, and Solidad are all competing in the Grand Festival, and it's time for their Pokémon to show off their best moves. Only 16 Coordinators will advance to the next round, so the pressure is on! Although Drew and Absol do a great job, he's not at all happy with Absol's performance. May is shocked to see him angry at his Pokémon, and she's even more hurt when he takes some of his frustration out on her. Drew later calms down, but his tension showed how seriously he's taking his rivalry with May.

The round of 16 sees May sending out Munchlax and Eevee against Harley's Cacturne and a not-so-cuddly Wigglytuff. Munchlax and Eevee team up to knock Cacturne out of the match, but Wigglytuff is an even tougher foe. With its flexible body, it's hard to score a solid hit until May figures out how to get an aerial advantage. Wigglytuff is knocked out and May moves on to the top 4, where she'll be facing off against Drew.

This time May uses Combusken and Squirtle, while Drew uses Flygon and Absol. The battle immediately heats up, and with Solidad still in the competition, the path to Grand Festival victory only gets tougher from here!


The first round of the Kanto Grand Festival has begun as Absol enlightens the stadium with a bright light shimmering from different angles. Solidad and May watch Drew in his first part of the second round. A whirlpool begins forming around Absol, creating a gigantic circle of water circling around Absol. After a few moments, Absol uses its energy from its horn to slice and dissipate the water creating a magnificent shimmering over the entire stadium. Drew bows taking a stance as the crowd applauds his performance.

Jessie makes a broadcast, with James, Wobbuffet, and Meowth as her crew, as Brianna watches from her residence with several snapshots of Drew and May placed around the house. Drew manages to walk across Jessie's path as she turns around and attempts to interview him. Drew makes a short comment and heads off into an adjacent room. Wobbuffet manages to turn his board which reflects the light from James's camera and begins scorching Jessie's face.

Lilian introduces the elegant Harley and his Octillery. His round begins as Octillery launches a Fire Blast attack towards the ground and propels into the air slamming down into the flames. Octillery begins moving its tentacles causing the flames to move in a counterclockwise motion around his body in the shape of a ring.

Meanwhile, Aipom is still evading Ash grasping his hat in her tail and moving it slightly upwards as Ash jumps up and manages to miss. Every time Ash attempts to grasp his hat, Aipom moves it out of his reach. Ash explains to Aipom that he wants to see May but Aipom only lowers her eyelid and sticks her tongue out at Ash. Ash decides that the only way he's going to be able to stop Aipom's troublesome antics is to capture her. Pikachu blasts forward with Agility knocking Aipom from the tree branch while Ash launches a Poké Ball towards Aipom. As the Poké Ball closes in on Aipom, she manages to evade the object and propel it backwards forcing the Poké Ball to collide with Ash hitting him on the head.

Solidad's round is finally underway as Slowbro uses its Psychic to rotate around the arena on the tip of its shell. Slowbro manages to come to a single point while still rotating and launches a stream of water overhead creating an effect of a fountain. May watches Solidad's magnificent round on the screen in anticipation of her upcoming round. May is announced to the arena for her second round as Ash manages to arrive just in time with Pikachu.

The crowd cheers as May makes her way into the middle of the arena. With a rotation of her wrist, a solitary Poké Ball is released into the stadium exploding with a bright light releasing Munchlax. Munchlax begins collecting energy from the sunlight launching a powerful Solar Beam. As the beam of energy ascends into the air, Munchlax propels into the air clashing with the energy with a Focus Punch. As the two forces clash, the sunlight slowly dissipates into the atmosphere creating a glimmering effect.

After her magnificent round, May questions her ability while Ash attempts to cheer her up. Solidad walks upon the ground to give May congratulations. Meanwhile, Drew and Absol have their differences with Absol launching a blinding attack towards Drew just managing to slightly brush against his hair. Ash, May and Solidad catch up to Drew as he recalls Absol back into its confinement of the Poké Ball and walks off into the forest. Harley notices the tense relationship between May and Drew and laughs softly.

Fireworks explode into the air as we are brought into the Battle Stage of the Grand Festival. The next round of competitors is released with May, Harley, Solidad and Drew. Brock displays his happiness for Solidad advancing to the Contest Battles. The list of competitors is randomly shuffled pairing Harley vs. May; Drew vs. a young female Trainer; and Solidad vs. a male Trainer. Ash, Brock, and Max are surprised by the sight of May's first opponent being Harley.

Harley and his Pokémon
May and her Pokémon

The countdown timer begins as May calls upon Eevee and Munchlax and Harley calls upon his Wigglytuff and Cacturne. Munchlax and Eevee begin the round blazing forward with a Focus Punch as Wigglytuff inflates to two times its size, dissipating the attack and knocking both Pokémon backwards. Wigglytuff blazes toward both the Pokémon as May anticipates the attack but Wigglytuff propels into the air and Cacturne strikes Munchlax and Eevee. Both Pokémon are knocked backwards and a fifth of May's score is reduced. Cacturne extends its needles and goes in for a final attack as Eevee manages to recover and launches a Shadow Ball while Munchlax uses its Focus Punch to increase the speed of the attack colliding with Cacturne for a direct hit. The smoke clears as Cacturne falls to the ground and is announced as unable to battle. Three fifths of Harley's score is removed.

Wigglytuff begins its descent from the air and crashes into the ground with Eevee and Munchlax managing to evade the attack barely. Wigglytuff extends its ears grasping onto both Pokémon's bodies and thrusts them towards the air and begins repeatedly slapping both Pokémon with its ears and finally slamming them to the ground. Munchlax charges another Solar Beam and Eevee launches an additional Shadow Ball. Wigglytuff evades both attacks while additional Shadow Balls and Solar Beams continue their barrage. Two-thirds of May's score is removed reducing her down to a fifth of her original.

Eevee and Munchlax launch another attack but miss their target on purpose with both attacks colliding behind Wigglytuff and forcing it uncontrollably towards the ground. Munchlax runs forward and propels off Eevee's tail igniting into the air and striking Wigglytuff down with a Focus Punch. Wigglytuff crashes into the ground and is announced as unable to battle. Harley's score is reduced to zero and May advances to the next round.

The round between a young girl and Drew is underway as the young girl's Medicham and Loudred are defeated by Roselia's Petal Dance and Masquerain's Silver Wind, knocking her score to zero advancing Drew to the next round. Solidad manages to defeat her opponent's frozen Girafarig and Zangoose with a devastating Hyper Beam from Slowbro. The ice breaks shattering the young man's dream and advancing Solidad to the next round. The next round begins with May and Drew calling upon their Combusken, Squirtle, Flygon, and Absol.

May quickly starts the battle with Squirtle using Rapid Spin. Flygon launches a whirlwind of sand towards Squirtle's direction as Combusken jumps onto Squirtle's shell and jumps while charging up for a Mega Kick. Combusken begins gaining altitude while Absol jumps into the sandstorm and launches a magnificent light blinding Combusken and finally reveals itself from the veil striking down with a devastating Iron Tail. Squirtle launches Bubble, while Combusken goes in with Sky Uppercut.

Major events

Coordinators who moved on to the Contest Battles
For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.


Pokémon debuts






  • In the English dub, before May and Drew's battle begins, Lilian Meridian says that May and Drew made it to the Top 4 of the Kanto Grand Festival instead of the Top 8.
  • In the Latin American Spanish dub, all characters refer to Harley's Wigglytuff as a "Jigglytuff".
  • During the first shot of Solidad's Slowbro spinning around during its appeal round, the Shellder's eyes are missing. However, they are seen in the next shot.
  • When Squirtle uses Rapid Spin, it is upside-down in the close-up shot as it spins toward Flygon and Absol. It is later shown to be right-side-up again when Combusken jumps onto it.

Dub edits

In other languages

AG180 : May, We Harley Drew'd Ya!
Pokémon the Series: Ruby and Sapphire
AG182 : Channeling the Battle Zone!
Project Anime logo.png This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.