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The Path to the Pokémon League! (008)


Well-Known Member
Because of this episode, I thought Sandshrew was one of the strongest Pokemon, and a lot of my friends wanted one in their teams, cuz it was so "powerful". The anime really is the best way to promote Pokemon.
Man, that Fissure really left a mark. I have to wonder how they fixed the field after that battle.
AJ's Pokemon were really powerful, but just because he was running them ragged with training. I find it incredible that Sandshrew was so happy being with him, especially when it escaped Team Rocket and immediately tunneled its way back to the "gym."


No longer posting
Other than the Fissure attack, I really didn't like this episode. I didn't like how AJ was treating and training his pokemon, even though the pokemon are ok with it.



I'm glad to see I'm not the only who questioned AJ's training methods. What bewilders me is how the writers tried to make it seem like he was in the right and that Ash was wrong to judge him. His Sandshrew was clearly jumping out of the pool and spinning himself dry and AJ was whipping him for it. Maybe his Pokemon are masochists.

I would have loved to see this guy get a loss from Team Rocket and breakdown, learning that his arrogance and abuse didn't work as well as he thought, but apparently Ash is the only one who has to learn lessons. The rivals can be as cocky and abusive as they want.

Pikachu and Sandshrew's interaction was amusing, I have to admit. XD


Well-Known Member
Staff member
I thought that AJ was too hard on Sandshrew when I first saw this episode. I thought it was mean of him to make Sandshrew swim since it was weak to water. Now though, I don't AJ's training methods one bit. I don't know why, I just tend to like jerkish trainers a lot. ^_^

The episode was really funny, though. I loved how Pikachu tried to lift weights with Sandshrew, but failed. I also liked Ash's long nose and how he got shocked when he tried to pull Pikachu away from the sidelines to battle.


From a Flygon Era
I didn't think AJ's voice fit. Nothing wrong with southern accents in general, but I don't think it worked with his character.

The idea of a non-official gym is a cool addition to the storyline.


Well-Known Member
This was a cool episode I remember it quite well. I wish they would of showed Aj again.
I liked the un-officail gym leader was cool. 6/10


Almost Never Online.
The idea behind this episode was neat, but I wasn't very fond of A.J. This concept could have been pulled off better.

Still, I have to give it to TR for boosting this ep. back up to "enjoyable" status.


I liked the A.J. character, it sort of made it a little bit more realistic. People would have wanted to create their own Gyms so it does make sense.
I completely agree with Bainca~, this episode was really boring, only Team Rocket made it slightly fun to watch. I understand they were trying to give a moral lesson about 'over-working', but they just made it boring to watch. And what is it with Ash trying to fight and getting in the pool with A.J. -_-' Fissure was cool to see though. o.o
All this episode did was portray just how annoying Ash is.


The only thing I got from this episode was that overworking your Pokémon would make them stronger and it does. This episode was pretty boring though. I liked AJ though and I wished we could've seen how he changed, or how he didn't change, in the Pokémon League.


aka Lamia
I agree that this episode was a boring one. I didn't really like AJ at all. I think Ash was right to stop him and his crazy training methods. Being persistant is one thing, putting metal bracers around a Pokémon seems a tad extreme.


Hoenn Challenger
Coming off his 10th win in a row against nameless trainers, Ash starts to get cocky. The gang run into A.J.'s Gym, an unofficial gym owned by a Character of the Day called A.J. who is aiming to get 100 wins in a row before he challenges a gym leader, he only has 98 wins so far. A.J. and Ash battle, trash talking each other beforehand, and A.J.'s Sandshrew stomps Ash's Pidgeotto and Butterfree, causing Pikachu to refuse to battle, giving A.J. his 99th win. We get to see A.J. using Macho Braces to train his Sandshrew, and item that won't show up ingame until Ruby and Sapphire, which also works as a nod to EV training as well. Ash complained about A.J. treating his Pokémon too harshly, and asks Brock and Misty to back him up. However, instead Brock compliments A.J. on the specialized food he prepares for his Pokémon. Jessie, James, and Meowth then tried to steal Pikachu, but ended up accidentally taking Sandshrew instead. It escapes, A.J. challenged Team Rocket to a battle, and his Sandshrew defeated Team Rocket, winning A.J. the final victory needed to set off and collect Gym Badges. Having settled their differences, Ash and A.J. part ways, intending to meet up again at the Pokemon League.



Haters Gonna Hate
Didn't AJ make a cameo in one of the Battle Fronteir's opening scenes?

Along with all the other CoD's from Kanto, and iirc he had a Sandslash by then.

Lance The Champ

The Aura Guardian
In the end they showed that AJ loved his pokemon but still he didn't train them nicely
The 100 match counting board and the gym were a nice idea. Good to see Ash being put back on earth in a hard way, he was becoming arrogant. AJ was too hard, but not mean. If I'd be a Pokemon trainer in the anime, I'd be nicer to my Pokemon and train them in another way. I liked this episode, 10/10, because Kanto rocks!


Well-Known Member
This episode was, for filler-episode standards, neat.

This episode in some ways symbolized the ways how people tend to train their Pokémons and the character of the day (AJ) was just badass for the way how he managed his own, unofficial gym. Also, don't you love how cocky Ash is now after he won his first two badges XD.


Well-Known Member
The episode was nice, although AJ was an annoying prick. For a second time, the annoying prick is somehow right in the end. Don't know why. Putting metal bracers around a pokemon and making ground types swim isn't proper training, it's just dumb.


Well-Known Member
An ok episode for our first Kanto filler, AJ isn't my favorite filler character but I liked his training style even if it was a little harsh. Too bad we never saw him again.