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| Riddle Me This
Burn! Guren Gym!
|| August 13, 1998
| United States
|| September 18, 1999
|| Team Ota
|| 武上純希 Junki Takegami
|| 横田和 Kazu Yokota
| Assistant director
|| 大町繁 Shigeru Ōmachi
| Animation director
|| 武田優作 Yūsaku Takeda
| Additional credits
Riddle Me This (Japanese: もえろ！グレンジム！ Burn! Guren Gym!) is the 58th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on August 13, 1998 and in the United States on September 18, 1999.
Ash, Brock and Misty travel to Cinnabar Island where Ash hopes to win his Volcano Badge. They are approached by a strange character speaking only in riddles while giving them clues on how to locate the gym. Once inside the gym, Ash and Pikachu have a super hot battle with a spitfire Pokémon they've never seen before!
Ash and his friends take a boat ride, finally going to Cinnabar Island. However, once there, they meet Gary and his cheerleaders, who explain to them that Cinnabar Island is a tourist resort, and that Pokémon Trainers have not ventured to Cinnabar Island since the days of his grandfather. Ash then discovers that they, indeed, are on a cruise ship. Once on the island, they decide to find the Cinnabar Gym, and thanks to a local (who tells them by using a riddle which Misty eventually solves), they do find it... only to learn that the Gym has been abandoned. The local tells them the story of how Cinnabar Island was once a hotspot for Trainers, but then tourism took off due to the rise of hot springs resorts from the nearby volcano. The Cinnabar Island Gym Leader, Blaine, closed down his Gym due to being forced to battle tourists who had no interest in battling for Badges. The local leaves, but not before leaving a business card with Ash to an inn.
Ash and friends decide that, even if there isn't a Gym, there is still a world-famous Pokémon Lab to explore. There, they too discover that it has been turned into a tourist trap. Finding nothing else to do, they decide to look for lodgings, but find that not only is the Pokémon Center's lodgings full, all of the hot springs resorts have been fully booked, and they are left with no choice but to camp out. Even Gary has found himself a room, but unfortunately for him, his room entertainment is in the form of Jigglypuff (with Hitmonlee and Electabuzz dressed up in costumes playing the shamisen), who puts him, the audience, Hitmonlee and Electabuzz to sleep (Ash and his friends ran away before it could Sing). When Brock reminds Ash of the business card, they find that it also contains directions there... but in the form of a riddle. Ash and Brock are both stumped by it ("...you will see my hands, or at least my face"), but Misty guesses correctly again (that being a clock). The local, who runs the inn, not only has a vacancy, but allows Ash and company to stay for free.
However, before they can settle in, the local receives a phone call, informing him that the Pokémon Lab, home to various Fighting-type Pokémon, is under attack from a balloon. Figuring that Team Rocket is involved, Ash and his friends arrive at the scene, and quickly dispatch the balloon with help from Pikachu and Pidgeotto (via Pikachu's Thunderbolt from the back of Pidgeotto). As a reward for helping to save the Pokémon, the local reveals a secret: that Blaine had built a secret Gym, in a place where "firefighters couldn't win".
Later that night, as Ash and his friends mull over the riddle in the hot springs, Togepi wanders off from Misty and jumps on a Gyarados statue, unwittingly activating a secret switch that moved a boulder, exposing a cave and knocking down the hot springs' gender divider. After quickly getting their clothes back on, Ash and friends explore the secret cave, and find a metal door that's hot to the touch. Beyond the door, they find a clear battlefield - Blaine's secret Gym, suspended over the Cinnabar Island volcano. The local suddenly appears, revealing himself to be Blaine (as Misty had figured out another riddle, the answer being the wig Blaine used as part of his disguise), and accepts Ash's challenge.
The Gym Battle begins as a three-on-three battle. Confident that the Fire-type leader will use his Fire Pokémon, Ash decides to lead off with Squirtle, while Blaine counters with a Ninetales. Despite the type advantage, Squirtle's Water Gun is no match for Ninetales's Fire Spin, and Squirtle is out in one shot. Deciding to fight fire with fire, Ash decides to use Charizard despite its obedience issues. In response, Blaine pulls Ninetales for Rhydon. However, Charizard simply loafs off as Rhydon was about to unleash Horn Drill, unwilling to battle. Quickly down two Pokémon, Ash decides to rely on Pikachu. Pikachu's Thunderbolt does not faze Rhydon at all, but Ash decides to take advantage of using Rhydon's horn as a lightning rod, and another well-aimed Thunderbolt at the horn knocks it out. However, Blaine isn't fazed, calling out his signature Pokémon, Magmar. Pikachu's electric attacks do not seem to faze him, which, as Brock explains, is due to Magmar using its own body heat as a thermal lance, diffusing the electricity. With Pikachu effectively unable to attack, and Magmar slowly wearing Pikachu out with a series of Fire Punches, the episode ends on a cliffhanger, as Pikachu finds himself facing down Magmar's Fire Blast, while about to back into the lava. Will Pikachu survive?
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
English dub debuts
Who's That Pokémon?: Magmar (US and international), Electabuzz (Japan)
Pokémon seen at the laboratory
A painting of a tiger can be seen in front of Ash and his friends
- This is the first time Ash uses his Squirtle in a Gym match.
- This is yet another episode where a real world animal is seen. While Ash and his friends are looking for a hotel to stay in, a picture of a tiger can be seen in one of the hotels. In addition, the food in Gary's hotel room consists of real world fish.
- The picture in question may have been based on a similar picture that was found at Azuchi Castle, featuring a mural of a tiger among grass, making it a real-world reference as well.
- Rhydon was defeated by an Electric-type attack, even though Rhydon itself is part Ground-type.
- Pikachu's triumph over Blaine's Rhydon in this episode has spawned the popular Pokémon internet meme, "Pikachu! Aim for the horn!". The phrase is misquoted, however; the actual quote is, "Pikachu, the horn!".
- This episode is preceded by different episodes between the original Japanese version and dubbed versions. The episode is preceded by The Breeding Center Secret in the original Japanese version and by The Purr-fect Hero in the dub.
- This episode was banned in South Korea.
- There is another hint at Pikachu's gender in this episode: During the scene where Ash, Misty, and Brock, alongside Pikachu and Togepi, were at the hot springs contemplating the odd old man's cryptic hint about where Cinnabar Gym was, Pikachu can be seen in the male-only portion of the hot springs. Similarly, Togepi was seen in the female-only section, likewise implying Togepi's gender.
- When Jigglypuff sings for Gary, it sings too quickly for the music. Its lips also move too quickly.
- Fire Spin is stated in this episode to be "Ninetales's most powerful attack", while just a little time later Fire Blast is called "the most powerful attack a Fire Pokémon has". Ninetales is able to learn Fire Blast so the statements contradict each other.
In other languages