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EP159 : A Dairy Tale Ending
Original series
EP161 : The Bug Stops Here
Air Time!
Battle at the Radio Tower! Surpass Space-Time!!
First broadcast
Japan August 17, 2000
United States September 8, 2001
English themes
Opening Born to Be a Winner
Japanese themes
Opening OK!
Ending タケシのパラダイス
Animation Team Ota
Screenplay 米村正二 Shōji Yonemura
Storyboard 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Assistant director 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Animation director 岩根雅明 Masaaki Iwane
Additional credits

Air Time! (Japanese: ラジオとうのたたかい!じくうをこえて!! Battle at the Radio Tower! Surpass Spacetime!!) is the 160th episode of the Pokémon anime. It was first broadcast in Japan on August 17, 2000 and in the United States on September 8, 2001.

201 Spoiler warning: this article may contain major plot or ending details. 201


Before leaving Goldenrod City, the flamboyant producer of Poké Talk Radio insists Ash appear on Sunny Morningstar's show to talk about winning the Plain badge. After the interview, the gang saves the day by participating in a live radio drama with the Dugtrio Trio (Team Rocket in disguise!) Be sure to watch the twists and turns of the live performance as our heroes battle Team Rocket on the airwaves!


Ash and his friends are eating at a restaurant, when a man approaches them. He introduces himself as the producer of Poké Talk Radio, and asks for Ash to appear because he got the Plain Badge.

The scene turns to Team Rocket hungry as always when they notice a huge building thinking it is a department store. When they arrive the guards stop them telling them they need an appointment to enter as this building is actually the Radio Tower. Then he points them to the monitor where DJ Mary can be seen talking. Then, they decide to enter the building, posing as celebrities. The guard let them in and they start a "Radio Raid" in the room where the tapes are kept. The door opens, and a man enters and mistakes them for a ventriloquist act saying they must be on air for an interview. He asks them where is their dummy and Jessie takes Meowth out and introduces him as the dummy. Then, the man proceeds to take them to the producer who sends them to the studio. There, they meet DJ Mary which introduces Team Rocket to the listeners as "The Dugtrio Trio". DJ Mary is amazed that their "dummy" looks and acts so alive making Meowth angered but quickly calmed down by his team-mates.

The interview continues while Ash talks to Professor Oak, who tells him that he and the whole town is proud of him for winning the Plain Badge. Ash is surprised how the whole town knew about this and Professor Oak explains that the producer called his mother and her mother told the whole town meaning they will all be listening to his interview, which makes him very nervous. Meanwhile, Team Rocket is enjoying a meal, thinking they were much better in showbiz than the real Dugtrio Trio. As they are eating, DJ Mary broadcasts saying Ash will be interviewed. Ash meets DJ Mary, who interviews Ash. Ash gets very scared, and begins to talk with his words flipped. DJ Mary stops the microphone and calms down Ash by telling him to forget they are on air and imagine they are in a Pokémon battle. Then she turns the microphone back on.

She proceeds to ask him if he would have a battle with her to which he replies by saying he'll gladly have a battle with any Pokémon Trainer. Next, she asks him what is his number one goal. Ash replies by saying it is to become a Pokémon Master, but first he wants to win the Johto League. He then starts to tell the Pokémon which are in his party and that he'll be heading to Ecruteak to challenge the Gym Leader there with this being the ending of the interview.

As they are leaving, Misty compliments Ash, and tells him he was good, when a man enters in the studio with a bunch of damaged tapes. They then meet "The Dugtrio Trio" (Team Rocket). Then the producer shows up telling that because of the damaged tapes they can't air the Radio Drama Show. Then he tells DJ Mary they should air it live with The Dugtrio Trio. When he turns back they are shown to be leaving but the producers stops them and brings them back. He convinces them to take part by telling them he will present them with a 5-star buffet. Then he turns to DJ Mary saying she, Ash and his friends must take part too. Brock and Misty immediately agree, but Ash isn't as happy as they are. Back in the studio Ash is scolded by Jessie for his reluctance towards the show. Before the airing, Jessie tells James and Meowth that they are going to steal the show and Pikachu. After the show starts airing, DJ Mary narrates the story by starting with a character named Prince Goldenrod who is just returning to his castle after a difficult Pokémon journey. Ash, who plays Prince Goldenrod, says he has longed for his return while the characters played by Misty and Brock agree with him.

Then DJ Mary continues the story by telling that they arrived at Goldenrod City but they see only the castle while the rest is covered in sand. Then the prince runs in the castle calling his parents. Upon their sighting Misty and Brock began to suspect them. The prince's "parents" are played by Jessie and James who tell the prince he must have a Pokémon battle. Then Meowth jumps out and scratches Ash both in the story and the real life. Ash replies by saying that this wasn't part of the script. Jessie says she improvised a little.

Back to the story, DJ Mary says that Meowth scratched his face in order to prove he wasn't an impostor. Finally it is revealed that his parents were actually impostors from the future and they were called Team Socket.

During the play, Jessie continuously changes the script. Finally, Team Rocket reveals themselves, snatches Pikachu, recites their motto, and takes off. DJ Mary narrates the story the whole time, as Ash, his friends, DJ Mary, and the TV crew give chase. They follow Team Rocket up on the roof where they are seen taking of in their balloon. Jessie then sends her Arbok. Chikorita dodges Arbok's Poison Sting, then uses Razor Leaf hitting Arbok and cutting the rope. Pikachu is freed, and uses Thunderbolt which sends Team Rocket blasting off again. DJ Mary ends the play with the Magic Stone which belonged to Goldenrod City, reappearing and changing the land back to its original state. Then, the producer congratulates them all.

The scene then turns to Team Rocket who is hanging on a tree. The real Dugtrio Trio makes their appearance asking for instructions on how to get to the Radio Tower. Team Rocket then falls down, and starts complaining of how they could have been such celebrities.

Major events

For a list of all major events in the anime, please see the timeline of events.




Dare da?


Who's That Pokémon?

Who's That Pokémon?: Pikachu (US and international), Charizard (Japan)


  • Professor Oak's Pokémon Lecture: Dragonite.
  • In the games, Mary is just an assistant on Professor Oak's radio show. While she is shown to have this role in Will the Real Oak Please Stand Up?, she is also seen here as a star in her own right. Mary also appears as Professor Oak's assistant on television in Oaknapped!.
  • While Cartoon Network aired the show in syndication, this episode wasn't aired until June 2, 2007. This was part of the two-day Pokémon Master Marathon that was aired shortly before the launch of the Diamond & Pearl series in the US.
  • In the dub, instrumental versions of All We Wanna Do and Pokémon Johto are used as background music in the form of music on the radio.
  • Misty's line in the play "There is something rotten in Goldenrod" seems to be a reference to Shakespeare's play Hamlet, where the character Marcellus said "There is something rotten in the state of Denmark".
  • This episode is tied with Sick Daze for having the shortest dub title so far, with eight characters (nine if the space between the two words is included).
  • Team Rocket's mechas: Cyborg Meowth (in radio show only)
  • Jessie's improvisational invention of a "time warp" (in the dub) may be a reference to The Rocky Horror Show, in which some characters dress eccentrically - rather like Jessie and James' costumes - and perform a dance known as the Time Warp.


  • Ash's Kingler is shown as Krabby in this episode.
  • The Brazilian dub inconsistently translates Goldenrod. In the dub, Goldenrod City is translated as "Cidade de Pinhão Dourado" (literally, "Golden Pinenut City"), while in the radio show Ash's character is referred as "Valente Príncipe Goldenrod" ("Brave Prince Goldenrod").
  • The blurb for this episode spells Plain Badge as Plane badge instead.

Dub edits

  • In the original, the Dugtrio Trio was called the Dodrio Clan.

In other languages

EP159 : A Dairy Tale Ending
Original series
EP161 : The Bug Stops Here
Project Anime logo.png This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.