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Farewell Sprigatito? - Pokémon Horizons Episode 40 Review - Is Sprigatito leaving Liko?

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A collage of screenshots from this episode, showing Liko with Sprigatito; Liko and Manya; Liko hugging Sprigatito; and Sprigatito with Terapagos
This week's episode of Pokémon Horizons reveals the origins of Liko's Sprigatito! It’s interesting how Sprigatito knew where she came from, and even came back to visit. It’s also nice to learn how these starters come to be, and how they get sent off to schools and labs for beginning trainers. In Sprigatito’s case, it seems she came from a breeder who specializes in breeding feline Pokémon.

The title is definitely bait, as Sprigatito doesn’t actually leave Liko, but just wants some time away from her because of her actions. She loves Liko a lot, but she worries about her own strength. It turns out that Liko’s Sprigatito is a bit different from the rest. She always been a lot stronger than her siblings, and when she was trying to protect her siblings from a Spidops that tried to attack them, her Leafage had hurt them in the process, causing them to avoid her. It turns out that while she was a bit wary of Liko, she saw her in the interview screen at Indigo Academy by chance and felt as if they were destined to be partners; imagine a story where Liko didn’t get Sprigatito as a partner…

I do like the growth that Liko shows here in this episode. If this was Liko from the beginning of the series, she’d be wallowing with self-doubt, wondering if she would fit as Sprigatito’s partner. However, Liko has changed. Instead of wallowing in the past, she tries to understand her partner’s feeling by trying to communicate with her. She even said to Sprigatito that she didn’t mind if she scratches her because she did that when they first met. I also liked Sprigatito’s growth here too! She's finally learned Magical Leaf, meaning no more Leafage spam, hopefully.

Speaking of growth, Hatenna seems to be growing too! Liko told her to look after Terapagos, and she got all excited like a big sister finally getting responsibilities from her mother! If Liko’s party were a family, Liko would be the mom, Sprigatito would be the eldest, Hatenna would be the middle child, and Terapagos, despite being the oldest by a wide margin, would be the baby. Hatenna even chased after Terapagos when it ran off, showing that she’s not afraid to leave the ship to search for it! Such a big change for such a previously timid Pokemon!

The breeder who raised Sprigatito, Manya, was a very nice lady. She feels like she is what Liko could be when she's older, as she was able to read Liko and Sprigatito’s feelings very well. I do like how she’s the one explaining Sprigatito’s backstory, and how she was there when Liko was being interviewed by Indigo Academy. I think it’s so cool to see the person who brought Sprigatito into the world; I don’t think we've ever had an instance in the Pokémon Anime where we've had that sort of knowledge about a partner Pokémon's history. Please correct me if I am wrong. My only gripe was that I would have liked to have learned a bit more about Manya, but it makes sense to not focus too much on her as Sprigatito is meant to be the star. Manya is voiced by Mie Sonozaki, who voices Cynthia in Pokémon Masters EX and who voiced Lusamine in Pokémon Evolutions. It's interesting to see how Horizons has been bringing in a number of voice actors lately who have previously played roles in different Pokémon media. Of course, with how long Pokémon's been a thing, there's probably not that many voice actors in Japan who haven't played at least one role on Pokémon!

Speaking of the breeder, this is also the episode where I learned for the first time that the Sneasel line are considered felines. I honestly don’t know how to feel about this, considering I’ve thought of them as weasels until now.

Sprigatito facing off against Spidops
I also liked in this episode how Roy continues to show how he's such a nice boy. When Liko sprained her wrist, he immediately helped her up and took her to see Mollie, and even waited at the clinic with her. He’s a good friend. Though, it does seem like Fuecoco hasn’t forgotten Ember. Now that Liko has beaten Roy in a battle, it should be time for Furcoco to stop spamming the move and learn something with a bit more omph.

Right now, my only concern for Sprigatito is her future. The Sprigatito line primarily focuses on Speed and Attack stats. Liko's Sprigatito rarely uses her physical moves, preferring to use Leafage and now Magical Leaf, which are special moves. Either Sprigatito needs more development in order to bring out her true potential, or she’s going to be a very weak Meowscarada if she focuses only on Special moves. But those are just my thoughts. What are your thoughts on this episode?


Bulbanews Writer
I swear, there are so many episodes in this series that just make me think, "they would never have made this for Ash's anime".... This episode wasn't cliché at all. None of the characters acted the way you'd expect—instead, they acted real. It was so thoughtful, and so heartfelt that I almost shed a tear near the end! Like most of Liko's filler episodes, it's a quiet and slow one, but it's remarkably deep as well.

The title is definitely bait, as Sprigatito doesn’t actually leave Liko, but just wants some time away from her because of her actions.
Idk about that.... The first time Sprigatito accidentally hurt one of her friends, they basically abandoned her. She even repressed her own Leafage because that moment shook her up so badly (the episode explains that that's why her Leafage was so weak at the beginning of the show). I think Sprigatito really did want to leave for good, thinking that she deserved to be abandoned again.

Either Sprigatito needs more development in order to bring out her true potential, or she’s going to be a very weak Meowscarada if she focuses only on Special moves.
I'm sure the anime logic will take care of that, dw :thumbsup:
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