Hush, keep it down
Go watch The Mighty Accelguard to the Rescue! again. When Ash first meets Clay at the very start of the episode, Clay refuses his challenge because he has to go work in his mine. The Revival Herbs are never mentioned until Stopping the Rage of Legends! Part 1, the second time Ash sees Clay. They had nothing to do with Clay refusing the first challenge.Why are we comparing Clay's actions to Skyla?
I honestly don't see what Clay did was wrong. Outside of delaying a gym. I don't think it's against the rules to delay a gym for any reason.
Clay is also a business man, who is gifted in Pokemon battles, kind of like how Giovanni is Leader of an evil organization but had time to run a gym.
Clay had other priorities. And quite frankly I don't see the problem.
It's kind of ridiculous for anyone to think "Hey you're a gym leader, I'm a challenger, stop what the **** you're doing and battle me."
Which is kind of what Ash did to Clay, just not as rude and pretentious.
This is kind of the reason why gyms do have reservations. Why would anyone expect a gym leader to stop doing what they're doing and then battle them, right there and then. Sure was it rude of Clay? Sure but no ruder than Ash thinking Clay was going to stop doing what he was doing and battle him.
As for the revival herbs, well what would be the better route. Having a "rude" challenger going to get the herbs to prove himself worthy, or having the gym leader drop what he's doing, go to some place to get herbs as a result to an unforeseen reason, and waste all that potential time not battling challengers or running his business. Sure he could've sent someone else but then that person whoever he sent would've had to deal with Team Rocket. And odds are they wouldn't have been able to stop Team Rocket from taking the Kami Trio thus no revival herbs.
How is this Ash's problem? The revival herbs are for Pokemon, it seems quite clear that something happened in the mine, that would require a whole crap load of revival herbs to take care of, something that potentially the Pokemon Center might not be able to handle.
But let's go further and presume Clay is a jerk, and let's say it was to keep the Pokemon continuing to mine, thus notifying the Pokemon center would be admitting overworking the Pokemon.
Regardless of the reason do you think Clay was really in a business position to battle Ash and ignore what the revival herbs were for.
Now Clay isn't omniscient, but through the course of actions from the writers.
- Ash was promised a battle if he got the revival herbs
- Milos Island and the Kami Trio were saved as a direct result of Ash, Iris and Cilan going to the island to receive the revival herbs.
- Ash got revival herbs and got to battle Clay.
Now you can argue the questionable actions by Clay, and argue how selfish Clay was acting, but I think in this instance, what happened was far better than any non selfless course of actions.
So in the instance of Ash's first challenge, we have Clay refusing to battle him purely because he's "got something better to do." He wasn't offering Ash a chance to get the badge and move on, he was simply demanding Ash bend his schedule around his own. If you want to make up scenarios, how is that fair to challengers who might not be able to stay in Driftveil City until he's willing to take the challenge?
I'm perfectly willing to admit the problems with Skyla's actions as soon as someone understands the hypocrisy in both the writers and fandom ignoring Clay's actions.
That's simplifying it to an extreme. I'm bothered because almost identical behavior was ignored when Clay did it, but fetishized into "oh look how horrible she is she needs to be taught a lesson and put in her place!!!1111" when Skyla did it.Or why anyone is getting all upset JUST BECAUSE Ash and Cilan have a problem with it.