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| Going Apricorn!
Kunugidama and the Bonguri Fruit! Backyard Battle!!
|| April 13, 2000
| United States
|| March 10, 2001
|| Team Ota
|| 米村正二 Shōji Yonemura
|| 藤本義孝 Yoshitaka Fujimoto
| Assistant director
|| 鈴木敏明 Toshiaki Suzuki
| Animation director
|| 志村泉 Izumi Shimura
| Additional credits
Going Apricorn! (Japanese: クヌギダマとボングリのみ！うらやまのたたかい！！ Kunugidama and the Bonguri Fruit! Backyard Battle!!) is the 143rd episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on April 13, 2000 and in the United States on March 10, 2001.
Ash delivers the mysterious GS Ball to a renowned Pokémon expert, but Team Rocket wreaks trouble when they attempt to harvest the Apricorns essential to local Pokéball production.
Ash, Misty, and Brock talk with Kurt and his granddaughter Maizie over some drinks. Maizie thanks the trio for helping to save the Slowpoke Well and her grandfather. Ash brings up Professor Oak's errand, the GS Ball, and hands it to Kurt, but the trio are left shocked when Kurt declares that the GS Ball is some kind of Poké Ball. Kurt apologizes for not knowing much about it but reassures them that he will look at it closer. Ash and his friends make a video call to Professor Oak and informs him that Kurt is now inspecting the GS Ball. Professor Oak is pleased and urges them to report any new findings as soon as possible. Ash then asks about Kurt's expertise, and Professor Oak explains that Kurt is a famous craftsman who makes special Poké Balls using Apricorns. Ash then asks about Apricorns, and Oak adds that the trees grow around Kurt's home. Misty then alerts Ash to a White Apricorn tree growing in the backyard. Ash then runs off to find Kurt to get himself an Apricorn Poké Ball, leaving the Professor still on the phone.
Ash calls out to Kurt, but Maizie tells him to be quiet as it is hard work making Poké Balls. Maizie, Ash and his friends watch Kurt perform more work on an Apricorn Ball before placing it back into the kiln. Ash then repeats his request, but Misty tells him to not be so rude. Kurt happily gives the trio a Fast Ball each as a thank you for their earlier assistance at the Slowpoke Well. Maizie adds that the Fast Balls are from White Apricorns and are used to catch Pokemon that runaway. She then explains that there are seven different Apricorn types, each making a different Poké Ball. Ash is eager to get an Apricorn Ball of each color and Kurt agrees provided Ash retrieves the Apricorns himself. Maizie then offers to take Ash up into the mountains to locate the other varieties, and he happily agrees. Team Rocket also happens to overhear the conversation and set their sights on stealing the Apricorns to make money selling them.
Maizie first shows Ash and his friends a Pink Apricorn tree, explaining that they are used to make a Love Ball. Brock then asks if he could use the Love Ball to catch Officer Jenny or Nurse Joy, but Misty tugs on his ear and pulls him into line. Ash then spots some Apricorns that are growing on a tree and runs for them, but Maizie tells him they are not ready to be picked yet. At another tree, Maizie again stops Ash as he tries to pick several Yellow Apricorns. A mysterious group of Pokémon appear from the tree, and the Pokédex confirms that they are Pineco. Brock declares that he is wanting to catch one, seeing it as a challenge for any aspiring Pokémon Breeder. He rushes over, but trips over a rock and headbutts the tree, which causes the Pineco to Self-Destruct. Then, they find some Green Apricorns, but run away when attacked by some Beedrill. They manage to avoid their stingers after falling off a ledge.
When they reach a Red Apricorn tree, they fall into a hole dug by Team Rocket. The evil trio stares down at the twerps and performs their motto. Meowth then lassos Pikachu with a rope and Jessie puts him into an electric-proof jar. They then announce that they will steal all the Apricorns with a vacuum. Ash has Bulbasaur pull them out of the hole with its vines. Just as Team Rocket tries to vacuum up the Apricorns they fall into a hole dug by some Diglett. Pikachu is thrown into the air, but Ash manages to catch him and releases Pikachu from the jar.
Ash and his friends finally collect some Apricorns, as he and Misty pick a Blue Apricorn each. Maizie directs everyone's attention to a nearby Black Apricorn tree, and as Ash gets close he stops after coming face to face with another horde of Pineco. Brock again prepares to catch himself a Pineco, but Jessie, James, and Meowth bring out a bicycle-powered fan in an attempt to blow all the Apricorns out of the tree. Instead, all the Pineco are blown out of the tree, while Brock tries to keep them from getting hurt. Ash has Pikachu use Thunderbolt on the machine, but the attack instead helps the fan to become more powerful.
Suddenly, one Pineco tries bounces up the hill towards Team Rocket and it tackles the trio off their bicycle. Team Rocket are left red-faced and decide to teach the Pineco a lesson. Jessie sends out her Arbok to give chase. James then orders his Victreebel to attack, but it instead latches onto James's head. Pineco craftily dodges Arbok and rushes towards Team Rocket again. At Maizie's suggestion, Brock throws the Fast Ball that Kurt gave to him earlier and catches the Pineco. Victreebel and Arbok go on the attack again, but Pikachu evades them both. Pikachu then uses Quick Attack and hits Team Rocket’s Pokemon with a Tackle attack, knocking them into Jessie, James and Meowth. Pikachu follows up with a Thunderbolt which causes Team Rocket’s fan to explode and send the trio blasting off again.
Maizie is glad the Apricorn is safe and thanks Ash for his efforts. Meanwhile Brock calls out his newly-caught Pineco. He apologizes for catching it under strange circumstances, but declares that they will be the best of friends. Pineco appears happy before exploding in Brock's arms, leaving its new Trainer covered in soot. The blast also causes a Black Apricorn to land on Ash's head. Later, Maizie and the others return to Kurt's home to hand the craftsman their Apricorns, two Blue and a Black one, to be turned into Poké Balls. Brock asks if Kurt has learned anything new about the GS Ball, but Kurt remains clueless about the mysterious item. Kurt adds that the GS Ball is sealed by a powerful lock and asks if he can inspect it a little while longer, to which Ash and the others agree. Kurt then informs Ash that the Azalea Gym would be open, so Ash sets off to the Gym.
Ash and his friends receiving Fast Balls
- For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.
Who's That Pokémon?: Lugia (US and international), Pineco (Japan)
- This episode marks the final appearance of the GS Ball, which is left with Kurt. The storyline is dropped at this point, and besides a flashback in Hour of the Houndour, the GS Ball is never seen again due to a planned arc featuring Celebi being scrapped by the producers.
- The Celebi arc was subsequently used as part of the fourth movie's plot, although the GS Ball itself wasn't referenced or even took part in the movie's events.
- Like in the games, Kurt has a White Apricorn tree near his house.
- The dub title is based on the phrase "going ape".
- This episode's title can sometimes be seen written in the form "Goin' Apricorn!".
- The book Secrets of the GS Ball is based on this episode.
- Yet again, Misty doesn't seem to care about the Bug-type Pineco. Indeed, it is revealed in a later episode that Misty wasn't even aware that Pineco was a Bug-type.
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