Quote Originally Posted by S.Suikun View Post
in retrospect, it holds up as the easily most solid DP episode up to this point.
I didn't quite feel this way when I watched this episode last year, but on this viewing, I agree. This episode is definitely the best of the episodes shown so far.

I made the mistake of saying that Turtwig's stubborness and the battle b/w Ash and Paul at the end of the episode were two different things. Not true at all. The moment in the battle where Ash asks Turtwig to jump back into the hole, after already getting burned by ember once, really brings the entire episode together. In fact, it feels like Ash puts Turtwig in that type of extreme trust situation on purpose, as he immediately picks up that Turtwig is hesitant to do so (Dawn is also questioning Ash, which is pretty normal for her this early in the region). It's one thing for obvious trust like dodging, and another for Turtwig to trust Ash on this seemingly stupid tactic. The moment is even more exciting b/c judging by the flow of the episode, all Ash's problem seemed to be was merely getting Turtwig to dodge attacks; there was no way to predict that Ash wanted more than that. So just when you think the plot point is resolved, it's taken to a whole new level. This episode really helps you to appreciate how much Ash's pokemon have to trust him, considering his really creative tactics and spur of the moment commands.