Pokemon Vol. #11: The Great Race (Mania.com)
Review Date: Sunday, August 03, 2003
Release Date: Tuesday, November 16, 1999
What They Say
Ash triesito get theisoul badge at Fuchia Gym, but theigym isia ninja mansion full of treacherous traps! Then, devious racer Dario has rigged theiPokemon race with his sabotage, wounding theifront runner, Lara! Can Ash catch Lara's Pontya andiwin theirace? A lost boy, Tommy, has been raised byitheiKangaskhanito speak Pokemon language! Now Team Rocket isitryingito trap theiKanaskhan, andionly Ash, Pikachu anditheir friends can stop them, save theiKangaskhan, andireunite Tommy with his family!
Contains TV episodes: The Ninja Poke-Showdown, The Flame Pokemon - athon! & The Kangsakhan Kid
The fight for the Soul Badge occurs in the next exciting volume of Pokémon.
Only an English language soundtrack is provided on the Pokémon DVD. It’s a stereo mix, but no directionality is present. The soundtrack is clear and distortion free.
This video on this volume of Pokémon appeared a bit on the soft side in addition to the artificial darkening that 4Kids adds. No macro blocking artifacts, cross coloration, or line shimmering was present though.
Pikachu, Growlithe, Dugtrio, Onyx, and Ponyta race towards the viewer on the front cover of The Great Race. It captures the spirit of the race really well. On the back cover, a screen shot of Misty, Starme, Pikachu, and Bulbasaur from the The Flame Pokémon-athon! episode. A Khangaskan, episode list and episode description wraps up the back cover.
The same familiar menu consists of just a chapter selection scene where you can select an episode, the opening, or the ending.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers)
Ash gets to fight a ninja master for his next badge, and then it’s time for a safari adventure.
We begin The Ninja Poké-Showdown with the gang lost, as usual, on their way to Fushcia Gym when they find a mysterious mansion in the fog-covered forest. Everyone wanders inside, and they encounter trap after trap until they meet a girl named Aya who says that they are in a training area. Aya challenges Ash to a Pokémon match using Venonat, while Ash chooses Bulbasaur. After Ash wins the battle, the girl’s master, Koga appears, and it turns out he’s the Fushcia Gym Master. The Soul Badge is now up for grabs!
Next up is The Flame Pokémon-athon!, when the gang accidentally wanders into a Pokémon reserve, and Ash tries to catch one. A Growlithe stops him until a girl named Lara comes up to them on a Ponyta to explain that no Pokémon can be caught here. Lara tells them a Pokémon racing tournament is going on the next day, so Ash, Misty, and Brock stay to see it. At a festival the night before, a boy named Dario tells Lara that her herd at home is stampeding, and while trying to stop it, Lara breaks her arms. Since Lara was supposed to enter the race on Ponyta, she asks Ash to take her place instead. Misty joins him on her Starme, and Brock rides on Onyx. Dario is also participating in the race on a Dodrio, aided by Team Rocket.
Last up inThe Khangaskhan Kid, the gang reaches the Safari Zone, a place where Pokémon are allowed to run wild without fear of being caught. Ash doesn’t realize that, and gets caught by Officer Jenny. She quickly realizes that Ash honestly didn’t know, and they all rush out after they discover Team Rocket is poaching in the area. Circumstances prevent Officer Jenny from stopping Team Rocket, and a bunch of Khangaskhan looks like they’re about pouched when a kid wearing just a loincloth comes out of the trees and rescues the Khangaskan. The boy calls himself Tomo, and he’s been living in the forest ever since his parents dropped him in the jungle years ago. At this time of course, his parents arrive back, learning that their son has been found. Tomo, or Tommy, has been living without his parents for five years and he considers the Khangaskan his parents now too. Like Tarzan, Tommy is torn between both of his families.
Wow, Ash bags his sixth badge, so that only leaves two before he can enter the Pokémon League. A lot of the Japanese cultural references in one of the episodes will be lost on the children watching though. The racing episode provides a bit of excitement, but the Tarzan rip off episode is rather annoying. There’s a nice breast milk joke in it though. Another good set of episodes.
Toshiba 3109 player, Toshiba 36” Cinema Series via component, Pioneer VSX-810S receiver via optical, Cerwin Vega front speakers, Pinnacle center and rears
Mania Grade: B+
Audio Rating: B
Video Rating: B
Packaging Rating: C+
Menus Rating: C-
Extras Rating: N/A
Age Rating: 3 & Up
Region: 1 - North America
Released By: Viz Media
Running time: 65
Aspect Ratio: 1.33:1
Disc Resolution: 480i/p (mixed/unknown)
Disc Encoding: MPEG-2