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What do you think of Team Rocket in XY?

I think I do to some extent understand what you're saying. I feel like the Rockets we're seeing in XY are different to what we saw in DP (which is my benchmark for good writing). But I'm not sure if that's totally due to the writing or due to my changed perception. I can't say I can really put my finger on what is organically different in how they're written/what they do. I suspect that there's a large element of distrust on my part which colours my view of the series - after DP, their most developed series, they after all dumped all their pokemon without a second thought and turned into these heartless bots, so what is to stop the writers doing the same again?
 
I suspect that there's a large element of distrust on my part which colours my view of the series - after DP, their most developed series, they after all dumped all their pokemon without a second thought and turned into these heartless bots, so what is to stop the writers doing the same again?

Sure, I can understand that some people were dissapointed with BW (well, even I was dissapointed they were completely denied any opportunity to pick up their older pokemon, even in episode N) but the case is that they had logical reason to left their older pokemon behind at the HQ: mission, mission, mission, direct orders from the boss, undercover, serious shit. And it works. Also, originally the TRio are villains, fully capable of evil. They are able to be cold or serious if they really need to be which doesn't make them "bots". Just people full of various aspects: coldness, kindness, friendship, villainity, originality and criminality. In XY, though? There is no reason for them to abandon their older pokemon! Kalos remains their own initiative, boss remains in the background, there is no Zager, no agents and no serious shit. There are many situations when they are not even needed to be present as serious villains and yet they remain highly serious. And that's where my problem with XY begins. It's nice that they brought Sonansu back but even Sonansu loses its charm when you realise he remains basically background pokemon with no soul and initiative of his own (except for XY063) and thus his "Sonansu!" shots only take precious time away from TR's limited screentime. I like him or his disguises but he feels like another blatant wasted opportunity limited to mandatory "Sonansu!". People argue Zager took so much screentime away from them during BW but... damn it, he had reason to be there and he served his plotline purposes very well, not to mention he may be actually enjoyable kind of villain or "mentor" if one only treads him without any weird hatery. And so... here is the difference between BW and XY: BW knew what it was doing and it executed it effectively, still remaining faithful because characters had REAL reasons to act the way they did, while XY... well, a big mess, so many wasted opportunities, limited screentime, even though it's not BW kind of deal anymore, yet there are so many cosmetics and visual details which are supposed to take your attention away from those major and blatant flaws. That's why XY feels like a fake of some kind at times. And surprisingly, it works very well. Because once you take the carrot away and the fandom starts yelling VERY impatiently (even though you have good intentions of developing completely new plot bits and opportunities for the future of the show or characters of the TRio and Giovanni), you are being presented with two choices:
1. Repair the situation in the next series but also remain strong and creative and faithful (and probably also faithful to your new inventions in a smart and less hurmful way).
2. Do not repair anything, do not even try to remain original and interesting anymore. Just give the carrot back instead, no matter your writing, no matter continuity, no matter consistency, no matter mottos, no matter screentime, no matter even your own wishes for the show or characters! (because some episodes of XY clearly indicate that some writers have some kind of... well, very strong sentiment, even fetish!, for BW period and with this lazy, messy aproach it manifests itself very badly or uninteresting)

So yeah, and that's exactly what happened. Whoever is responsible for the decision... now we observe the option number two if it comes to Team Rocket. And it's really harmful. And it started NOW, in XY (having some roots in DA as well), not in the main BW (although yes, it doesn't mean you need to like BW... but, tbh, dislike is exactly what's so often motivates people so they act completely illogical and blame BW for everything bad about the series lol -I would blame execs and the stuff but well). And the most common argument among the fandom: at least XY is better than BW and "old" Rockets are back. Oh, wow. I can't even imagine how convenient it is for the writers or big sharks who decide in which direction this anime and its characters go. It's REALLY convenient. It seems they don't really need to try anymore and TR fans are still in heaven, so seriously... why bother? What is to stop the writers being lazy or strictly mandatory? And here lies the essence of the case - something that distinguish XY from all the other series, even BW.
 
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Also, originally the TRio are villains, fully capable of evil. They are able to be cold or serious if they really need to be which doesn't make them "bots". Just people full of various aspects: coldness, kindness, friendship, villainity, originality and criminality.
I have two issues with this:
a. I have recently rewatched a large part of Kanto and not even once would I describe them as villains akin to what they were portrayed as in BW - they are goofs from the very first episode.
b. BW from what I have seen/understood did not show any of the kindness, friendship, originality stuff which is what gives the characters a personality and elevates them above the level of mindless drones. This was explicitly highlighted by the TRio's seiyuus themselves in the first episode of the radio show!!

It's nice that they brought Sonansu back but even Sonansu loses its charm when you realise he remains basically background pokemon with no soul and initiative of his own (except for XY063) and thus his "Sonansu!" shots only take precious time away from TR's limited screentime. I like him or his disguises but he feels like another blatant wasted opportunity limited to mandatory "Sonansu!".
What did he ever do (post Jouto) different from this? (As a side note: I'd argue that he did even less than usual in XY 63 apart from the moment when he turns up at the end to save the day!) Lots of people have been happy that he's done a lot more battling this series. Does that not tick the boxes for you?

XY... well, a big mess, so many wasted opportunities, limited screentime, even though it's not BW kind of deal anymore, yet there are so many cosmetics and visual details which are supposed to take your attention away from those major and blatant flaws.
BIB - like what?

Tbh I don't think we'll ever agree. As far as I'm concerned the writers committed character assassination in BW and have consequently had to shamefacedly retrace their steps. The current problems I have with their portrayal simply require time to heal them back to the TRio I knew and loved from the beginning of the series to the end of DP. I love them as characters and don't give a rat's arse what happens to the Rocket Dan organisation as a whole. The only thing the writers can do to make me happier is make Musashi, Kojiro and Nyasu appear every episode and be a bit sillier. (Original motto footage each episode would send me into ecstasies but I can just about live with this.)

I'm not invested enough in the show and it's future to care too much about overarching plot development. So yes, I am one of the fans who you described as being in heaven this series. But maybe your expectations are too high from this children's anime which exists solely to sell merchandise?...
 
I love them as characters and don't give a rat's arse what happens to the Rocket Dan organisation as a whole. The only thing the writers can do to make me happier is make Musashi, Kojiro and Nyasu appear every episode and be a bit sillier...

I'm not invested enough in the show and it's future to care too much about overarching plot development. So yes, I am one of the fans who you described as being in heaven this series. But maybe your expectations are too high from this children's anime which exists solely to sell merchandise?...

OK. Here is the difference, I guess: I don't strive for another apparance of the TRio as if they were my daily or weekly fix of some kind (although they are my favourite characters and I can REALLY enjoy them). Besides, even though I fully understand that it's not necessary to care about Rocket Dan organisation or plot bits of the show (and well, I'm actually not invested in the majority of the show), it's pretty much something that defines and creates the characters in the first place, right? Not to mention even the characters themselves care about Rocket Dan as a whole... at least to some extent (even pretty serious extent at times) so it's really weird to completely disregard this aspect of the TRio. And no, my expectations aren't too high... it's just like you said - maybe it is the general purpose of the anime but the case is... Team Rocket in XY exist solely to sell merchandise (more than ever before!) and that's where my dissatisfaction appears. I would be glad if they were treated better than tools of profit - exploited in the easiest way possible - without any REAL serious position in the XY series (at least for now). It's just really sad.
Anyway: I'm glad you are willing to discuss and share your opinion. Really. It's refreshing and interesting.

a. I have recently rewatched a large part of Kanto and not even once would I describe them as villains akin to what they were portrayed as in BW - they are goofs from the very first episode.
b. BW from what I have seen/understood did not show any of the kindness, friendship, originality stuff which is what gives the characters a personality and elevates them above the level of mindless drones. This was explicitly highlighted by the TRio's seiyuus themselves in the first episode of the radio show!!

Oh, dear. Here we go again! Please, notice just one thing - their failures and progressive goofiness started after they dedicated themselves to get pikachu, although they still expressed many cold aspects of competence during Original Series, especially early Original Series. In BW they got special mission/serious motivation (something completely new for their portrayal in the series), plus many other things, like Sager's or Flint's presence, for example. So the TRio appears highly serious. Not to mention the whole "noire" atmoshere of BW further enforced this approach in the execution of this series. You may like this approach or not, although it doesn't change the fact that the writers had every right to experiment with their own creativity and ambitious execution. And it also doesn't mean they ignored the characters because - while it seems very convenient to consider BW Rockets "OOC" - they were not OOC and it's completely possible to prove it. In a manner of logic, probability and reasons, not only personal preferences or headcanons. But it's not BW topic. So if you are interested, here you can find some other posts concerning your two issues.

What did he ever do (post Jouto) different from this? (As a side note: I'd argue that he did even less than usual in XY 63 apart from the moment when he turns up at the end to save the day!) Lots of people have been happy that he's done a lot more battling this series. Does that not tick the boxes for you?

Yep, it's true. But it was back then. What could we possibly expect? TR was completely degraded, although we could always expect them to come up with new interesting dedication, friendship moments, motto and other things, plus they had better portion of screentime than in XY. Now? After DP development, BW innovativeness? It's highly possible to get more so why shoudn't we expect more and better? The writers can do better. But they won't. So I'm very dissapointed. I expected Sonansu reunion to bring us something more than only his post Johto antics because I generally expected XY to become something MORE for Team Rocket. Hmm, and maybe I should clarify why I think he was something more in XY063: his role and actions had real, sensitive and deeper meaning as opposed to his background status. Battle usefulness is highly appreciated - on the other hand... it was mainly the begining of the XY series because later on it was obviously much easier to use Pumpkaboo's recycled battle footage... hmm, I wonder how they resolve this now, after it evolved. So yeah... I would really appreciate him if he was doing something more, I don't know, acting as an important part of their schemes sometimes (and more than just a part of Nyasu's disguise, another background role). I speak about usual eps, of course. Because perfomances are generally fine, even if they still lack TR screentime.

BIB - like what?

I guess it would require a really detailed review of XY episodes: their flaws, their lesser positives and their visual distractions which conveniently fill the void and are the only thing the stuff is able to provide consistently. Too much to write about it right now. It appears very frequently. But let's just redirect to my other posts yet again. Besides, if you rewatch the XY episodes I previously mentioned in one of my posts, you would certainly notice a certain pattern: charmful "cosmetic" (or visual) tactics, including their disguises... yet some obvious flaws in the background: poor screentime, poor treatment, poor characterization, quick and weird blast-off, highly reduced role, poor and recycled scenarios etc. I can still enjoy them in some ways but still... it's no longer the same and it feels very bad. The writers could have done so much better if they only cared about the characters (or were actually allowed to really care?) and not only cared about keeping the fandom "in their grasp" and ensuring the merchandise's success. Who knows what's exactly going on behind the curtain.
 
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OK. Here is the difference, I guess: I don't strive for another apparance of the TRio as if they were my daily or weekly fix of some kind (although they are my favourite characters and I can REALLY enjoy them).
Yeah that really is the difference haha! Their appearance really is like a little weekly fix for me ;-)

Besides, even though I fully understand that it's not necessary to care about Rocket Dan organisation or plot bits of the show (and well, I'm actually not invested in the majority of the show), it's pretty much something that defines and creates the characters in the first place, right? Not to mention even the characters themselves care about Rocket Dan as a whole... at least to some extent (even pretty serious extent at times) so it's really weird to completely disregard this aspect of the TRio.
You're right of course, it is their original raison d'etre in the show. But I'm afraid that when it comes to the TRio I cannot take the logical route. If my sister or a close friend got tied up in a criminal organisation, I would still love and wish well for them and the latter aspect of that would mean I'd wish them out of the criminal organisation - my feelings about the TRio wrt are the same. (And no, I am not totally crazy, I know that they're only fictional characters but still :p)

I would be glad if they were treated better than tools of profit - exploited in the easiest way possible - without any REAL serious position in the XY series (at least for now). It's just really sad.
Oh I wish it could be... Alas I feel that the show has long been a tool for greedy corporates and gradually the TRio too more than ever. I'm sure you've read Takeshi Shudo's blog entries which show how much he cared in them (and the show) as a true artist would. When Tomioka became the head whatever in DP I thought he took over this role to some extent, but I don't know if he still has that role. I am at least pleased that Mima and the TRio's seiyuus care enough to salvage the characters from the mire of BW. Anyway I wish it could be like you said but I am not holding out any hope.

Please, notice just one thing - their failures and progressive goofiness started after they dedicated themselves to get pikachu, although they still expressed many cold aspects of competence during Original Series, especially early Original Series.
They chose Pikachu in their first ever episode! And I'm sorry but I flat out disagree. Their level of competence as villains even in the beginning of Kanto is near 0.

Regarding BW I cannot make any comment as I haven't watched most of it. I have a deep aversion to tumblr but will try and have a look at some of the posts you shared some time when I'm free!

Anyway: I'm glad you are willing to discuss and share your opinion. Really. It's refreshing and interesting.
Likewise :) I hate feeling like I'm talking to myself LOL! Always nice to make the acquaintance of a fellow Rocket fan even if there's a lot we don't agree on.
 
Likewise :) I hate feeling like I'm talking to myself LOL! Always nice to make the acquaintance of a fellow Rocket fan even if there's a lot we don't agree on.

Yes :) I agree.
Btw, sure. The formula of the show was always different because it was all about them being defeated at the end. No other way for them to remain completely competent. BW changed the rules because it changed the formula, thus allowing them to remain succsesful when Ash remains out of their way (or if it's necessery for overall plotline purposes). Don't forget about Rocket-dan: The Origin of Love and Youth, though. It was the begining and they still performed better than Kosaburo and Yamato. Their "little" side project concerning pikachu (that started after their first apparance in OS) was a right thing to do but only made their situation with the boss much worse, allowing Kosaburo and Yamato to completely destroy their reputation within the organisation. While BW, allowing them to remain succesful, restored their repution back to where it lied at the begining.

Anyway, I enjoyed the conversation :) And if you haven't watched BW, perhaps you should give it a try. You don't need to love it but it's certainly an experience and a thing to know (especially now, after it's done and they are ultimately back in XY, so it shouldn't bother you so much anymore).
 
Mixed. Okay, so I've always felt a little mixed on Team Rocket. Still, I don't know how much is me being older and seeing the strings more than the puppet more, but have felt like a series of tropes more than characters for a while. There's just something unnatural about them. In a way, it's not something that bothers me all that much either. Partly since well, TR have been on the show for years so it's not too surprising. There are episodes where XY TR really work and feel awesome and overall are awesome, but those are a little too rare for my liking. With XY being how it is, this is especially annoying since it feels like a cheep way of adding tension (and probably is a cheep way of adding tension) in a series that has a strong character focus and sometimes character focus is a lot more exciting than tension. I like the idea of XY Satoshi: having the best of BW TR and the best of DP TR is an idea that appeals to me but I don't feel like it works outside of episodes that focus on Citron (and the Nyasu/Eureka one and a few others.)
 
OK I gave up of them. I want them in jail, about now. That stupid who created a Robot and destroyed a few stores is in jail, the mad woman is who tried to fire a Hyper Beam on Ash is dead, DEAD. Why are these bastards who dropped a girl from a high altitude with a smile, made a whole city including hospital blackout, and I don't care how much property damage still out here? JUST WHY?

I realized I am just repeating what I said before, but in the previous post I said I hope they will redeem theirselves. Here I can say, NO REDEMPTION. GUILTY OF ALL CHARGES. I DEMAND DEATH SENTENCE.

I had enough of them. Dropping Bonnie off is just too much, with a smile none the less. DP is the last time they are still worthy of redemption. And now in XY, no more turning back.
 
OK I gave up of them. I want them in jail, about now. That stupid who created a Robot and destroyed a few stores is in jail, the mad woman is who tried to fire a Hyper Beam on Ash is dead, DEAD. Why are these bastards who dropped a girl from a high altitude with a smile, made a whole city including hospital blackout, and I don't care how much property damage still out here? JUST WHY?

I realized I am just repeating what I said before, but in the previous post I said I hope they will redeem theirselves. Here I can say, NO REDEMPTION. GUILTY OF ALL CHARGES. I DEMAND DEATH SENTENCE.

I had enough of them. Dropping Bonnie off is just too much, with a smile none the less. DP is the last time they are still worthy of redemption. And now in XY, no more turning back.

--Removed--

Hater? You have absolute no idea how much I loved them. But what I am sorry of is the word 'loved' is in past tense.

Team Rocket can be as boring as they want, and I still would love them. I totally gave a free pass for their ations in BW, I gave them an excuse that they wanted to impress Giovanni. But this is not the case now in XY.

In DP saga, I loved when they do part time jobs, they do their best, often impressing their employer. And what we get in XY? They betrayed their job and the trust of their employer.

They loved Pokemon. Loved. Now I cannot say the same. Evidently when they ambushed Goodra. Because it was really not relevent to their plot and it obviously put Goodra into such a state that its severely injured. The problem s not with the attack, its the intention of the attack is to do nothing but injured Goodra. That mentality is wrong.

And now dropping a girl from an altitude. You can try justifying this action all you want. But remember, Hunter J used those lasers that turns Pokemon into stone, its no difference with Team Rocket using those laser cages. Both of them are extremely greedy, Hunter J only works for money and Team Rocket always mention wanted to be rich in their Boss Fantasies. The only difference between them was, Hunter J was murderous and will not care of any possible collateral damage. And now, it seems I can't say they are different anymore. This is so wrong on so many levels.
 
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Team Rocket can be as boring as they want, and I still would love them. I totally gave a free pass for their ations in BW, I gave them an excuse that they wanted to impress Giovanni. But this is not the case now in XY.

Well, actually... this is the case. They always want to impress their boss (or do their best for TR) because it's their villainous job. But yeah... BW had them doing plotline stuff and regaining their position within the organisation. It gave them a free pass. And this is not the case now, in XY, especially that they do nothing of overall relevance and they don't even contact Giovanni about mega evolution stuff.

In DP saga, I loved when they do part time jobs, they do their best, often impressing their employer. And what we get in XY? They betrayed their job and the trust of their employer.

In DP they are poor. In XY they are (supposedly) paid well by the boss. So well, it's not even the betrayal what was wrong... but why and how they betrayed. Just so they can make a jump for Pikachu and their plan was just... well, surprisingly weak (even for some DP standards, I think). There was no logic there and the minute it occured it was so fucking clear they were there (in their fancy disguises) only to be there (pure fanservice). Their reasons/logic were written horribly. The writing didn't really care whether they wanted to earn some additional money or not, whether they wanted to pull up some undercover scheme or not. It was all about "yay, TR charming disguises and expressions", nothing more, nothing less.

They loved Pokemon. Loved. Now I cannot say the same. Evidently when they ambushed Goodra. Because it was really not relevent to their plot and it obviously put Goodra into such a state that its severely injured. The problem s not with the attack, its the intention of the attack is to do nothing but injured Goodra. That mentality is wrong. And now dropping a girl from an altitude. You can try justifying this action all you want. But remember, Hunter J used those lasers that turns Pokemon into stone, its no difference with Team Rocket using those laser cages. Both of them are extremely greedy, Hunter J only works for money and Team Rocket always mention wanted to be rich in their Boss Fantasies. The only difference between them was, Hunter J was murderous and will not care of any possible collateral damage. And now, it seems I can't say they are different anymore. This is so wrong on so many levels.

I agree that writing/animation in XY is bad because they have no purpose and they appear so freaking malicious (even REALLY crazy at times!), although... commiting evil or violent acts is NOT beyond them. The difference is that Hunter J was a pure sadistic sociopath/psychopath so the only things she truly valued were money and cruelty. Meanwhile, even though Team Rocket TRio CLEARLY belong on the spectrum of sociopathy, they are not overly malicious. They can taunt or harm, even just for the sake of it, but it shoudn't be becoming (along with annoyance and goofiness...) a defining feature of their characters (which is pretty much the case in XY... after all, all their actions resolve around "we are crazy antagonists!" and they don't even get a spare time, not to mention actual big reasons for their appearances... nearly all they do is purely mandatory and disturbingly invasive).



The only difference between them was, Hunter J was murderous and will not care of any possible collateral damage.
The difference is that Hunter J was a pure sadistic sociopath/psychopath so the only things she truly valued were money and cruelty. Meanwhile, even though Team Rocket TRio CLEARLY belong on the spectrum of sociopathy, they are not overly malicious.

Well, I really felt the need to clarify this case. But since there is a lot of confusion about it anyway... it's better that I redirect you to my recent post from Team Rocket - The Ultimate List. This description is far more detailed.
 
I've been (re)watching AG. Well, I took a long break, but I will start watching the episodes again. Team Rocket was so genuinely funny there. Their puns, their gags, their goofy fantasies about Giovanni (how they thought he'll use the Pokemon they catch)... all of that, I love them so much there. Makes me sad seeing them in XY :(
 
In my opinion, they act exactly the same as they did in the Unova region, except for Wobbufet. I really wish they'd act more like their old selves. I mean, it's nice not having to see them every episode, but they used to be funny and I really wish they'd return to their dramatic and campy selves instead of being serious, sadistic, and "catch Pikachu mode" all the time.
 
In my opinion, they act exactly the same as they did in the Unova region, except for Wobbufet. I really wish they'd act more like their old selves. I mean, it's nice not having to see them every episode, but they used to be funny and I really wish they'd return to their dramatic and campy selves instead of being serious, sadistic, and "catch Pikachu mode" all the time.
What? Are we even watching the same show? o__O;

I think they're pretty much the same as at the end of DP, maybe just a bit less of punching bags and derp, which is good imo. I have no idea why people think they're still different from "old" Rockets.
 
I like that they actually use their heads once in a while in XY, but I miss the funny goofiness that used to happen. They've done a decently good job of bringing back some of the characters' personalities, but it's just not the same, and a lot of that is because of the different voice actors - their new actors are good, but a character just isn't the same once their voice changes, and in the case of pretty much every character in the anime, it felt like a lot of their personality got thrown out the window.

Quite honestly, I feel like Team Rocket just get in the way sometimes. There is absolutely no reason for them to be in certain episodes. The Future Is Now, Thanks to Determination comes to mind here, because that would have been a LOT more epic with Team Flare driving the plot rather than Team Rocket. And there are other examples, too. But overall, they're better than they were in BW. I liked the dangerous Team Rocket from the beginning of BW, but once they went back to their old ways, it was so lifeless compared with what they used to be. In XY, they do an infinitely better job than ever before of actually establishing the relationship between Trainer and Pokémon for both Jessie and James, and the incredibly vain and arrogant side of Jessie comes back with Pokémon Showcases, but there just isn't as much life in their characters as there used to be, and that's a scripting problem, not just a voice acting problem. It's the exact same situation with Ash. The sass, sarcasm, and dry wit from the first few seasons is almost completely gone.

Setting all of this aside, I've always liked Team Rocket, and their appearances in XY usually do make me laugh even if it's not always like the pure silliness from the first few seasons. They've always been some of my favorite characters and their XY personas are MUCH improved from DP and BW in my opinion. They definitely dropped off in those seasons, but with XY, the writers of the show are doing a better job of putting the comic relief and sometimes even some legit character development back in Team Rocket rather than using them as a constant backup plot device, and I LOVE the fact that they have the episodes they do - Facing the Grand Design!, A Fork In The Road! A Parting of the Ways!, and A Festival Trade! A Festival Farewell? are all great Team Rocket episodes in my opinion.
 
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I watch the show for Ash and Pikachu. Team Rocket's fun and all, but they're not my focal point. So if BW wanted to make them serious, that's fine with me. If XY or any future saga wants to return them to their roots, that's fine with me.
 
I like that they actually use their heads once in a while in XY, but I miss the funny goofiness that used to happen. They've done a decently good job of bringing back some of the characters' personalities, but it's just not the same, and a lot of that is because of the different voice actors - their new actors are good, but a character just isn't the same once their voice changes, and in the case of pretty much every character in the anime, it felt like a lot of their personality got thrown out the window.
RE this and the script, please, please watch the original version of the show! I agree - dub TRio has really fallen into atrocious times.

The Future Is Now, Thanks to Determination comes to mind here, because that would have been a LOT more epic with Team Flare driving the plot rather than Team Rocket.
To address the specific point of TF, I think we can now safely say that the reason they haven't appeared up till now is because there were other plans for them. With that in mind, I think it's understandable that the TRio plays an antagonistic role where TF might also have fit (but didn't because the writers want to do something different with them).
 
The Future Is Now, Thanks to Determination comes to mind here, because that would have been a LOT more epic with Team Flare driving the plot rather than Team Rocket.
To address the specific point of TF, I think we can now safely say that the reason they haven't appeared up till now is because there were other plans for them. With that in mind, I think it's understandable that the TRio plays an antagonistic role where TF might also have fit (but didn't because the writers want to do something different with them).

Yeah, I think Team Flare will make an appearance when Ash and Alain meet each other, given Lysandre's appearances in the Mega Evolution specials. The creators of the show might do the same thing they did with Team Plasma and put TF in after the Kalos League is over, especially considering the rate at which Ash is getting Gym Badges. I agree that it makes sense to put Team Rocket in to hold off on introducing TF, but I feel like their antagonism in certain episodes is kind of lacking.
 
I have to say, there's just something off about the TRio's transition from their M.O. in OS-DP to their behavior in BW.

I find it a bit hard to swallow, since, in OS-DP they were considered complete and total losers by their fellow agents and Giovanni (who had all but forgotten about them in DP), and were apparently viewed as contributing nothing to the Organization (in fact, as long as they were the proxy for the Organization, it made Team Rocket look kind of silly until some other agents actually showed the true might of Team Rocket). Yet, in BW, they were apparently getting missions from Dr. Zager at the very least and Giovanni at the very most, were interacting competently and civil with other TR members, were actually apart of much larger Team Rocket schemes and were apparently receiving praise and congratulations from others in the organization, including Giovanni (who was apparently speaking very highly of them during that time frame).

These are the same people who would call Giovanni via a pay phone (calling collect no less), do any sort of work just to pay for a hot meal, be talked down to by other TR members and would even get down on their knees before Ash and/or his friends from time to time right?
 
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