Alolan Marowak time! Nice to see Marowak get some time in the spotlight, it really hasn’t had a full episode to itself since Season 1. Anyway, here is Daily’s spotlight on the 34th episode in the Sun and Moon series and the 973rd episode overall:
Battle of Fire! Marowak Appears!!
Ash and Co. are visiting Wela Volcano for the Wela Fire Festival. Kiawe is a regular attendee of this festival, and leads the way. Professor Kukui seems to think that this will be an excellent opportunity to learn, Olivia wants to enlighten the class on the traditions of Akala Island, Kiawe and Ash think this will be an excellent opportunity to power up Ash’s Litten. But Marowak hides in the shadows, obviously plotting something vile. Quick, show the title card before Marowak gets any ideas!
Olivia is still the Kahuna of Akala Island, and as such it is her job to place the Wela Crown on the head of a large quantity of Fire-type Pokémon. Said crown is made of hardened lava, and apparently makes the Fire-type “as strong as Wela’s fire”. Lillie mentions that many trainers come from other regions to this event, which explains the Pansear and Quilava (the best Fire-type) in line, as neither of these Pokémon are native to Alola. Kiawe goes into a flashback.
Finally, it’s Ash’s turn with the crown. But suddenly, Marowak comes out of nowhere and steals the crown! After Rotom wastes a good 30 seconds that could have been used chasing Marowak to give its Pokédex entry, the chase is on, with the Kalos Elite Four music in the background. Why Kalos? I don’t know.
The path splits, and Ash loses sight of Marowak. Rotom Dex the Useful says there is a 50% chance Marowak took the right path and 50% he took the left path. Thanks, Sherlock.
Kiawe manages to get past some hikers after a great deal of annoyance, and finds Marowak. However, the Ghost/Fire-type is too fast for Kiawe’s Turtonator, even dodging a Z-Move (all of which have perfect accuracy in the video games), and defeats it.
Later, Kiawe and Ash have a chat. Kiawe apologises to Turtonator for messing up. Kiawe attempts to train with Ash. It works, after a while. Turtonator is implied to have learned a new move, but it is not shown what said move is.
Back on the mountain, Kiawe challenges Marowak again. Dragon Tail cancels out Bonemerang, but Marowak still lands a Headbutt. Flame Wheel and Flamethrower collide next, resulting in a heat wave that causes Lana’s Water-typed Popplio to hide but seemingly doesn’t affect Mallow, Sophicles, and Lillie’s Grass, Steel, and Ice-types, respectively. Marowak jumps over Turtonator, but Turtonator is most dangerous from behind. Mallow says Turtonator dodges Marowak’s next attack, despite it obviously being a direct hit to the shell. However, it was a trap! A Shell Trap, to be more specific. Marowak is blasted by Turtonator’s signature move.
Now it’s Turtonator’s turn to go on the offensive. The move Turtonator learned while training with Ash is revealed to be Shell Smash, and the Blast Turtle Pokémon uses it to boost its Speed and Attack (at the cost of its Defense). Rotom then completely ruins the moment by describing the effects of a two-generation-old move for the camera. A Dragon Tail makes some space for Turtonator to prepare its most powerful attack, Dynamic Full Flame (read as: Inferno Overdrive). As any VG player will tell you, there isn’t much that takes a +2 Z-Move to the face and lives to tell the tale, and a Marowak certainly isn’t among the select few.
Marowak concedes defeat and politely hands the crown back to Kiawe. Ash goes on a standard Pokémon “their hearts were as one” rant. Marowak then asks to be captured, which Kiawe happily obliges. However, as soon as Marowak is let out, it immediately begins attacking Turtonator. Mallow interprets this as a competitive spirit, Turtonator likely interprets it as a pain in the rear. Or, more correctly, a pain in the large hole on its chest. Marowak promptly gets stuck in said hole, and Kiawe sighs before removing the flailing Pokémon from this predicament.
With the crown returned, the festival can be continued. Pikachu, then Litten, and finally Marowak receive the blessing of Wela from Olivia. Rotom, ever the scrapbooker, decides to take a picture. True to the game, this photo is bombed by one of the hikers from earlier.
Overall, this was a fun episode. It is also worth noting that Team Rocket was completely absent from this episode. Pokémon stealing sacred relics to interrupt festivals is a bit of an overused plot for the Pokémon anime, but this is better than many. Kiawe got one of my favorite new Pokémon in this episode as well, so it will be interesting to see where Marowak and its rivalry with Turtonator goes from here.
Edited by Meganium and Volpe Artica