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EP028 : Pokémon Fashion Flash
Original series
EP030 : Sparks Fly for Magnemite
The Punchy Pokémon
Fighting Pokémon! The Great Battle!
First broadcast
Japan October 14, 1997
United States October 15, 1998
English themes
Opening Pokémon Theme
Japanese themes
Opening めざせポケモンマスター
Ending ニャースのうた
Animation Team Ota
Screenplay 園田英樹 Hideki Sonoda
Storyboard 鈴木敏明 Toshiaki Suzuki
Assistant director 鈴木敏明 Toshiaki Suzuki
Animation director 酒井啓史 Keishi Sakai
Additional credits

The Punchy Pokémon (Japanese: かくとうポケモン!だいバトル! Fighting Pokémon! The Great Battle!) is the 29th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on October 14, 1997, and in the United States on October 15, 1998.

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


In the outskirts of Fuchsia City, our heroes come across Hitmonchan, a fighter-Pokémon. With little thought, Ash attempts to capture it, but he and Pikachu are badly defeated. Hitmonchan's master has abandoned his family, training day and night, aiming for victory at the P1 Grand Prix (the number one Pokémon Grand Prix). His daughter tells Ash and his friends of her desire to make her father remember his family. In the meantime, Ash's party enters the P1 Grand Prix, but with Team Rockets unwanted, not to mention, unofficial presence at the competition, the battle goes out of control.


A Hitmonchan runs along a road and suddenly stops by a tree to punch the air, while a girl watches the Fighting-type from behind. Ash and his friends are amazed at the vigor of the seemingly wild Hitmonchan. After checking his Pokédex, Ash resolves to catch it, telling Pikachu that if he can defeat Hitmonchan, he will become the world champion Pokémon. Pikachu is terrified to battle Hitmonchan, but Ash attempts to reassure Pikachu by offering to teach him his secret punch, prompting Misty and Brock to question when Ash became a boxing expert.

Ash challenges Hitmonchan, but Hitmonchan blocks Pikachu's efforts. Ash commands Pikachu to unleash his newly improvised Rocket Punch into Hitmonchan's face, though Hitmonchan is hardly phased. A man runs over, and reminds Hitmonchan to not let his guard down. He commands Hitmonchan to knock Pikachu out, which it does, with the man declaring Hitmonchan the victor. Brock notes that the Hitmonchan must not be wild after all. Suddenly, the girl behind the tree runs out, calling the man her father, begging him to come home and to give up being a Trainer. The man tells his daughter, Rebecca, that he won't quit until he becomes the P1 Grand Prix champion. He then informs everyone that he will be at his unofficial Gym and leaves. Brock gleefully asks how he can help Rebecca. She asks if they can defeat her father's Hitmonchan for her, with Brock enthusiastically accepting on the group's behalf. At the Fighting Spirit Gym, Rebecca informs Ash and his friends that her father's constant training for the championship has caused him to forget about his family. Brock, eager to help, convinces Ash to enter Primeape alongside his Geodude into the championship to defeat Hitmonchan.

Meanwhile, Team Rocket gets wind of the Grand Prix as well and decide to enter. James and Meowth want to win for the all-you-can-eat buffet, but Jessie intends to go to the salon and embark on a shopping spree. However, James points out that only Fighting Pokémon can enter. Jessie states that they will have to borrow one, pointing to a tall man and his Hitmonlee, which James identifies as the Kicking Fiend. As the P1 Grand Prix begins, Team Rocket have since stolen the man's Hitmonlee and clothes, keeping him tied and locked in a closet.

At the P1 Grand Prix, after the competitors are presented to the crowd, the first battle commences between a Machop and Ash's Primeape. Machop repeatedly chops Primeape, sending the Pokémon flying. Without waiting for a command from Ash, Primeape attempts to leap at Machop and deliver a kick, but Machop catches him and uses Seismic Toss to send the Pokémon out of the ring. Ash dives to save it, but misses. He asks his Pokémon if it is okay, but Primeape gives Ash a tearful look. However, after some motivation from Ash, Primeape shakes it off and jumps back into the ring, impressing Misty, who explains that Primeape doesn't usually listen to anybody. Now listening to Ash, Primeape is able to take control and defeat the Machop with Scratch and Mega Kick.

The next match pits Jesse's stolen Hitmonlee against Brock's Geodude. Brock waves to Rebecca, telling her that everything is under control. However, Rebecca shouts at Brock to look out behind him, but it's too late as Brock gets hit in the head with his own Pokémon. He sends Geodude back into the ring, where it is kicked mercilessly. Rebecca's father Anthony approaches, telling Brock that a real man knows when to admit defeat. Brock throws in the towel, and apologizes to Geodude for making it battle. Ash promises that he and Primeape will take care of things throughout the rest of the tournament.

As the tournament continues, Hitmonchan, Hitmonlee, and Primeape battle their way up the ladder. The next match is between Hitmonchan and Hitmonlee. Jessie is ready to do anything to make sure Team Rocket's stolen Hitmonlee wins, and James reveals that he and Meowth have a plan. Hitmonchan steps on glue, set by Meowth, and gets stuck. This leaves Anthony's Hitmonchan open to take several Mega Kicks. Rebecca leaps between the two Pokémon, forcing Anthony to intervene and take the hit. After making sure Rebecca is okay, Anthony throws in the towel. Anthony apologizes to Rebecca for worrying her and her mother, and embraces her. Misty exclaims that Ash and Brock's battling brought the family back together. Team Rocket, still in disguise as "Giant", arrives to meet with Ash, but James pokes his head out of their trenchcoat, causing Ash and his friends to realize who they are. Jessie and James then try to recite their motto, although James, due to obvious strain from trying to carry Jessie, ends up collapsing before they can finish.

Ash and Primeape celebrating their victory

The final battle between Primeape and Hitmonlee begins with Primeape blocking multiple rapid kicks from Hitmonlee. Ash reminds Primeape to attack, and it manages to sneak through a few hits. Pikachu spots Meowth climbing out from under the arena. Meowth tells Jesse and James that their secret weapon has been placed, which will shock Primeape and then detonate while Hitmonlee is in the air. Pikachu tries to warn Ash to no avail, so he decides to run underneath the stage. Hitmonlee jumps up as planned and James hits the button on the controls, but the device does not activate. Hitmonlee jumps down, but Primeape leaps and grabs him. It uses its Seismic Toss and wins the match, becoming the new P1 Grand Prix Champion. Primeape proudly boasts its new championship belt. Ash congratulates Primeape, telling the Pokémon how proud he is. Anthony concludes that Primeape has a lot of natural talent, and offers to train it for Ash, promising that he will make Primeape a true P1 Champion. Meowth and the rest of Team Rocket are baffled as to why the device didn't explode. Pikachu then turns up and gives the device to Meowth, who thanks Pikachu for finding it. However, the device activates, sending Team Rocket blasting off.

Ash leaves Primeape in Anthony's care for further training. Rebecca affirms that she will also make sure her father spends plenty of time with his family. A teary-eyed Primeape waves goodbye to Ash and his friends as they set out to continue their journey.

Major events

Ash leaving Primeape
For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the history page.


Pokémon debuts



Dare da?


Who's That Pokémon?

Who's That Pokémon?: Hitmonchan



  • In the English dub, the announcer mistakenly refers to a Machoke as Machop.
    • This was fixed in the Polish dub.
  • Meowth's trap for Primeape proved to be flawed.
    • When Hitmonlee jumped on the turnbuckle, had the trap went off, he would've been shocked anyway.
    • When Pikachu handed the device to Meowth, there was no way for James or Jessie to get shocked, as there was no current.

Dub edits

  • Kanto Pokérap: Day 4
  • Ash's statement of Pikachu using an uppercut was actually supposed to be a right straight.
  • A lot of paint edits were made in this episode.
    • The sign outside the Gym, 闘魂ジム (Fighting Spirit Gym), was changed to "Fighting Spirit". A similar, yet reversed version happens in the interior of the Gym, where toukon (Fighting Spirit) is changed to "Fighting Spirit Gym".
    • The "P-1 Grand Prix" text on the Banners are removed.
    • Any and all banners saying 必勝 (Victory), ポケピタソP (Pokédrink), がんばれ (Do Your Best!), ガンバレ(Do Your Best!), and ファイト (Fight!) are removed. However, a banner reading GOGOサワムラー (Go Go Hitmonlee) is left in the dub.
  • Team Rocket's desire for what they should get after winning the Belt were different between the original and dubbed version. In the original, Team Rocket mentioned wanting hamburgers, curry, cake, ice cream, steak, spaghetti, and cola. In the dub, it was changed to honey-glazed ham, roast leg of lamb, strawberry jam, sirloin steaks, and chocolate cakes. On a related note, Jessie's original desire was to invite bishonen (pretty boys) over for okonomiyaki, whereas the dub just called them her close friends.
  • Rebecca's mother was never mentioned in the Japanese version.
  • The hints at Primeape seeing Ash afterwards (and the implications that Primeape being Anthony's Pokémon only being temporary) were dub added. In fact, the only character in both versions to even hint at Primeape and Ash seeing each other again was the narrator.

In other languages

EP028 : Pokémon Fashion Flash
Original series
EP030 : Sparks Fly for Magnemite
Project Anime logo.png This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.