^ The writers needed him to lose. Regardless of what Pokémon he sent out (Muk, Kingler, a Mewtwo, a Dragonite, an Onix, etc) he was going to lose that match. It just made more sense with Charizard since it wouldn't obey him.
Watching Ritchie lose was the highlight of the episode. It gets a 10/10 just for that. I'm reminded about how bad the extended version of the Pokémon theme sucked though. It just isn't any good.
Ash coud have lost to anyone else than his other half. But I'm glad he lost too. However, it was Ash's first league win, and I actually felt sorry for him. But this was back when I was eleven.
However, the arguement was dumb. Businesses could have been mind to avoid blow ups. And his mom was right there. If there was anyone to talk to him, she or Professor Oak could have. I would have gotten mad too.