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DP186 : Familiarity Breeds Strategy!
Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl
DP188 : Battling a Thaw in Relations!
A Real Rival Rouser!
DP187   EP653
Intense Fighting Full Battle! Satoshi VS Shinji!!
First broadcast
Japan August 12, 2010
United States January 8, 2011
English themes
Opening We Will Carry On!
Japanese themes
Opening 「サイコー・エブリディ!」(BAND VERSION)
Ending 君の胸にLaLaLa
Animation Team Kato
Screenplay 冨岡淳広 Atsuhiro Tomioka
Storyboard 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Assistant director 浅田裕二 Yūji Asada
Animation director 岩根雅明 Masaaki Iwane
No additional credits are available at this time.

A Real Rival Rouser! (Japanese: 激闘フルバトル!サトシ対シンジ!! Intense Fighting Full Battle! Satoshi VS Shinji!!) is the 187th episode of Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl, and the 653rd episode of the Pokémon anime. It first aired in Japan on August 12, 2010 and in the United States on January 8, 2011.

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


The Sinnoh League quarterfinal battle between rivals Ash and Paul is turning out to be one for the ages! Ash still has all six of his Pokémon, while Paul’s Aggron and Gastrodon have been eliminated. But the tide begins to turn at this point as Paul’s true strategy begins to emerge: to predict and counter whatever Ash does! Paul’s Drapion sets up a nasty trap with Toxic Spikes and, mere moments later, a dazzling tactical display renders Ash’s Buizel, Staraptor, and Torterra unable to battle.

Next, Ash’s Gliscor comes in against Paul’s amazingly fast Ninjask. When Gliscor hits the ground and takes a lot of damage from Toxic Spikes, Ash switches it out in favor of Infernape—and this is where some creative strategizing on Ash’s part begins to erode Paul’s strategy, as an underground Flare Blitz burns off the Toxic Spikes!

After his Ninjask is eliminated, Paul brings out his Froslass, while Ash calls on Pikachu. Although Froslass is powerful and its evasion skills are impressive, Pikachu’s tenacity rules the bout, and Froslass is eliminated!

When Paul again calls on Drapion, Ash gets Gliscor back into the battle. Although Gliscor is still feeling the effects of previous battling, the magnificent training it received from the Air Battle Master is evident. We leave the action just as Gliscor is diving directly into Drapion’s Pin Missile! How will this incredible battle end?


The Lily of the Valley Conference quarterfinals Full Battle between Ash and Paul continues from where it left off, with Buizel trapped in the grip of Drapion's tail. When Buizel tries to use Sonic Boom with his free tail, Drapion just grabs it with a free arm, rendering it useless. Ash instructs Buizel to puff up and instantly release the floatation sack on his neck, allowing himself to escape and use Water Gun to lift himself into the air, away from Drapion. With Buizel still in the air, Drapion uses Toxic Spikes, littering the field with them and poisoning Buizel when he lands. Then, Drapion uses Pin Missile to finish off Buizel, thus leaving Ash with five Pokémon.

Ash then sends out Staraptor to battle Drapion next. Drapion unleashes a Pin Missile, which Staraptor effectively dodges with his high speed. He then goes in for an Aerial Ace, which Drapion manages to dodge at the last second, and captures Staraptor with its pincer tail. Drapion follows up with Cross Poison on the trapped Staraptor, and then throws the Predator Pokémon onto the ground, poisoning him with the remnants of Toxic Spikes and knocking him out.

Ash calls Torterra onto the field, and Torterra feels the effect of the Toxic Spikes instantaneously. Drapion uses Cross Poison on Torterra, and Torterra sends Drapion back with Energy Ball. Ash quickly attacks again with Leaf Storm, hitting Drapion again. Paul instructs Drapion to use Pin Missile to counter the Leaf Storm, and the attacks end up neutralizing each other. Torterra emerges from the smoke with a Rock Climb, but is grabbed by Drapion and struck by a Poison Fang. Torterra uses Synthesis to regain some energy, though Drapion attacks with Pin Missile again, hitting Torterra and knocking it out, leaving Ash with three Pokémon. Paul asks Ash if he's planning to send out Gliscor next, to which Ash responds that Paul is correct. Paul recalls Drapion as he tells Ash that he already knows all the Pokémon that Ash will be using because he purposely let him take out his Aggron, and Gastrodon so he could be certain of Ash's strategy and exactly which Pokémon he'd use. Paul then says that ever since he kept Drapion on the field, he has been able to predict every one of Ash's moves, but much to his shock, Ash is still willing to continue. Ash states there is nobody like Paul and replies that he is not losing to him that easily.

Ash sends out Gliscor and Paul sends out his fourth Pokémon, Ninjask, which uses Agility right from the start. Ash tells Gliscor to use its newest attack, Stone Edge. However it is easily dodged by Ninjask, still using Agility, also aided by its Speed Boost Ability. Ninjask comes in with a quick Fury Cutter, hitting Gliscor countless times. While falling, Gliscor regains lift and tries to use Fire Fang on Ninjask, but is unsuccessful. Instead Ninjask appears from behind, knocking Gliscor into the field and the Toxic Spikes Drapion had left. Ash swaps Gliscor out for his Infernape, who also gets poisoned from the Toxic Spikes. Ash realizes that he's at a major disadvantage while Toxic Spikes are active and tells Infernape to use Dig, which perplexes Paul and Ninjask. Infernape returns with Flare Blitz underground, illuminating the entire field in a bright red, alleviating the Toxic Spikes, and also damaging Ninjask. Paul tells Ninjask to use Giga Drain and it begins to sap energy from Infernape. At this point everyone notices that Ninjask is not moving as fast as it was originally. As Ninjask drains away its energy, Infernape scrutinizes Ninjask's movements carefully and lands a successful Mach Punch, knocking out Ninjask. Ash and Paul are now tied with three Pokémon each that are able to battle and Ash, knowing Infernape is starting to get tired, recalls it for some rest.

Paul sends out his next Pokémon, Froslass, while Ash selects Pikachu. Paul starts things off by having Froslass use Hail, and a thick cold mist soon covers the entire battlefield. Froslass’s Snow Cloak Ability comes into effect as she begins fading in and out of view, preventing Pikachu from following her movements. Things become more urgent when Pikachu starts to take damage from the Hail. Ash commands a Thunderbolt and Pikachu tries to hit Froslass, however, the Hail severely restricts the attack and it doesn't even get close to his target. Paul has Froslass use Ice Shard, which scores a direct hit on Pikachu. As Thunderbolt isn't working, Ash tells Pikachu to use Volt Tackle, however he passes right through Froslass without even hitting her. Froslass uses another Ice Shard, though Pikachu leaps into the air with Iron Tail. He swings around in mid-air finally lands an attack on Froslass, knocking her into the ground. Hail finally subsides, leaving Froslass with nowhere to hide. Paul orders an Ice Beam which freezes Pikachu in ice. Paul calls for another Ice Shard, but Pikachu is one step ahead and uses Volt Tackle to escape the ice and hits Froslass first. While Pikachu suffers recoil from the attack, Froslass is left unable to battle, thus leaving Paul with just two Pokémon. Although Dawn and Barry are happy that Ash is in the lead again, Brock reminds them that while Ash may have more remaining Pokémon, they have all taken considerable damage, whereas one of Paul's remaining two Pokémon has yet to enter the battle. Ash knows the round took a lot out of Pikachu, so he calls him back to the sidelines.

Paul sends Drapion back out and Ash calls on Gliscor again, encouraging it to show Paul what it learned from McCann. Drapion uses Pin Missile to start things off and Gliscor dodges by flying in the air. Gliscor uses Stone Edge and Drapion uses Cross Poison to neutralize the attack, leaving behind a large smoke cloud which Gliscor shields itself in. Ash then tells Gliscor to use Giga Impact, and Gliscor emerges only to power up and fly back into the cloud. Drapion gets ready to attack, not knowing where Gliscor will come from. Gliscor appears and Paul commands Poison Fang, as Giga Impact scores a direct hit. Drapion turns around to counterattack, only to be shocked that Gliscor isn't there. Paul and Drapion realize that Gliscor used the momentum from the attack to quickly throw itself back into the sky, safe from attack while it recharges from using Giga Impact. Reggie, who was watching the battle on TV, remarks that Paul's predictions have been crushed and he can no longer predict Ash's strategies. Paul realizes he allowed himself to be distracted by Stone Edge and has Drapion use Pin Missile. Gliscor uses its special training to dodge the attack with ease. It then powers up X-Scissor and flies towards Drapion, with both Ash and Paul ready to give it their all as the match enters its final stages.

Major events

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


Pokémon debuts






Infernape's missing tail
  • When Staraptor is defeated, Drapion is standing between Staraptor and Ash. However, when Ash returns Staraptor immediately after, Drapion is not in-between them.
  • When Team Rocket is complaining about the Toxic Spikes, James's right hand appears to have six fingers.
  • When Torterra's icon on the scoreboard changes to represent its defeat, the silhouette appears to be completely covering the icon's background. However, in every later scene in which the icon is shown, a small part of the background can be seen. This same error is present in the next episode.
  • When Ash is thinking about how to deal with Drapion's Toxic Spikes, Infernape's tail is missing.

Dub edits

  • In the English dub, Barry says the Toxic Spikes will stay on the field for a long time. In the original Japanese version, he implies that Toxic Spikes will stay on the field for the entire battle.
  • In the English dub, Paul says that he let Ash take down Gastrodon and Aggron to find out what Pokémon Ash would use. In the original Japanese version, Paul says his Pokémon were willing to go down to help him find out Ash's strategy.
  • In the English dub, Ash talks about needing to turn the battlefield upside-down to get rid of Toxic Spikes, and the phrase "upside-down" gives him the idea to use Infernape to get rid of them. In the original Japanese version, it was the word "battlefield" that gave him the idea.
  • In the English dub, Paul says it was clever for Ash to get rid of Toxic Spikes in the way that he did. In the original Japanese version, he says it would make sense for someone like Ash to come up with a strategy like that.
  • In the English dub, Barry notices that Ninjask can't use Speed Boost anymore. In the original Japanese version, he says that Ninjask cannot go any faster anymore.
  • In the English dub, when Jessie drinks out of one of the cans, Meowth says they will charge her triple for the drink. In the original Japanese version, Meowth says that it will be coming out of her paycheck.

In other languages

DP186 : Familiarity Breeds Strategy!
Pokémon the Series: Diamond and Pearl
DP188 : Battling a Thaw in Relations!
Project Anime logo.png This episode article is part of Project Anime, a Bulbapedia project that covers all aspects of the Pokémon anime.