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Animated Atrocities: Haunter Versus Kadabra by Regulas314 Animated Atrocities: Haunter Versus Kadabra by Regulas314
Show: Pokemon
Episode: 24
Year: 1997 (Japan)/1998 (USA)

Writer(s): Junki Takegami (Screenplay)
Director(s): Yoshihiro Oda (Assisstant Director), Sato Yamamoto (Animation Director)


Ok what the fuck? You bother to set up a gimmick of a 3 episode long gym arc, in the first episode you give us the most brutal Gym Leader this show will ever have in its lifetime, even if it goes on for 50 fucking years, you have Ash die in the 2nd episode of said arc and have it never brought up again, and now THIS! Inconsistent much? I guess I should better explain myself, specifically one of the worst endings to an arc and how not to do a sympathetic villain.


Ok so Ash arrives back at Saffron City with Haunter in tow and he's, kinda an asshole. Yeah, this Haunter loves to play cruel pranks on people ala Looney Tunes, and to be honest the beginning before they arrive at the gym is kinda funny, 'specially when Haunter paralyses Misty with Lick and Ash scolds him. Unfortunately that's the highlight of the episode, now it goes downhill, FAST! As soon as the gang arrives at the gym, Brock and Misty are hesitant to follow Ash because, to be honest they're scared shitless of Haunter, especially since Ash never caught it, it just followed him to be a dick, and I'll get into that now. This Haunter tries to be like Bugs Bunny merged with Witch Hazel, pulling sadistic cartoony pranks on everyone he meets, and he has no loyalties to anybody but himself! He flat out leaves Ash for DEAD at the gym so he can fuck with Team Rocket who really didn't need to be here. When Ash tries to get his other Pokemon (except Pidgeotto for some weird reason, seriously he almost never uses that thing ever) they back away scared shitless as well, Pikachu has an excuse, what about you pricks? I can see where your loyalties LIE!


And Sabrina immediately traps Ash and his friends turning Misty and Brock into dolls, like, into literal hand sewn stuffed dolls, I should also point out that Sabrina's powers are more fucking broken than Raven's from Toddler Titans. And even though he said he wouldn't help him a 2nd time, Sabrina's daddy (yeah I'm spoiling what'chu gonna do about it?) saves Ash from a fate worse than death at the last second. He then goes into Sabrina's origin story, this is my biggest problem with the episode, they try to use her origin as an excuse for Sabrina becoming evil, not just an explanation. Yes Sabrina got way too into her Psychic training and it pulled a Tiger Talisman on her, splitting her into two beings, for, some odd reason. That doll Sabrina holds is her true self, which actually makes things WORSE SINCE ITS A SOCIOPATH! You know what this means right? Well in case you don't I'll spell it out for you: That adult body Sabrina has is just an empty hollow shell, and the doll is her evil soul controlling it! So really she's been in control this whole time, she's just way into her powers! Also Ash is a bleeding moron to not realize that guy is Sabrina's father. I would suggest calling the police on Sabrina, but what're they gonna do? They're incompetent as all hell, only thing that can legit stop her is Mewtwo. And who CARES about beating a trainer for a badge, WHAT ABOUT YOUR GODDAMN FRIENDS!?


Back to Haunter, he just so happens to conveniently show up to stop Team Rockets greatest evil plan yet: dropping a fucking net on Pikachu, seriously? You guys have better weapons than that, you used FUCKING WARP PADS LAST TIME YOU WERE IN THIS TOWN! Ash, forget the badge for a second, you're legit gonna needs a goddamn army to stop her, she could match a Movie Legendary Pokemon in terms of power. BTW Haunter is a troll, he actually has to THINK about helping someone, seriously Ash why didn't you just put that thing in a Pokeball? In the toy chest, Brock and Misty meet Sabrina's doll mommy and she tries to justify one of the worst fates imaginable, your a fucking idiot, you should stay a goddamn doll.


As soon as they get to the gym, after a truly brutal beatdown of Pikachu once more and Haunter being an asshole once again, Haunter pulls out a cartoon bomb, it blows up in Sabrina's face and this causes her to laugh. Since Kadabra is psychically connected to her, it laughs uncontrollably as well, making it unable to battle with Sabrina's daddy declaring Ash the winner. Uh, 'scusie? I didn't know you had that kind of authority, I kinda though that's what the OTHER PSYCHICS IN THE GYM WERE FOR! This also causes Sabrina to become good again and the demon doll from hell to mysteriously vanish, I guess back into her body. Ash gets his badge, Sabrina gets an unruly wild Pokemon that will most likely abandon her the minute she turns her back, and she receives no consequences for turning her own mother into a doll for, what like 10-15 years? That's a nice happy ending, NOT!


This bitch is more evil than Giovanni, you know, that guy who paid to have an abomination created so he could rule the world? I dunno if this was the episodes intention, but that's what I'm getting from this episode. Even if it wasn't the intention, you HAVE to think through what you're not only implying, but what you're directly STATING! Word yourself carefully in any language, or you end up making a monster get away scot-free.


Cringe-Inducing Audio: 3
Cringe-Inducing Visuals: 2
Lackluster Writing: 7
Annoyance: 8
Disturbing Content: 6
Unnecessary Cruelty: 0
Rancid Morals: 3
Low Production Values: 1
Unfortunate Implications: 5
Characted Derailment: 4

Final Score: 39/100


Pokemon is owned by The Pokemon Company, Nintendo and Game Freak.

Animated Atrocities is from :iconmrenter:

Artisanking101
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:iconthecrimsondemon14:
thecrimsondemon14 Featured By Owner Jul 19, 2016
remember when i said there are some reviews i dont agree with u well this is one of them

ok i can understand the ending since sabrina should have got some kind of comupence for her actions although i woudnt consider her evil persay but more of a anti hero than anything shes a jerk yes but there is some woobieness about her like how she struggled to make friends and what not 

but haunter being a jerk makes sence imo sine its inplied in his first aperence  hes kinda a trickster he likes to goof off and have fun and mess with others so him leaving ash hanging honestly is perfectly in character for haunter sure its a teeny bit dickish but its not like hes ooc or anything along those lines 

i thought thisone was decent it had some good jokes( U MUST BE A PHOTOGRATHER XD) and a couple of cool momments like pikachu trying to save ash fromm being turned into a doll  i dont think its a masterpiece(but then again i find the first sabrina ep alittle ovverated honestly) but it was enjoyable nonorless imo
Reply
:iconsimpsonsfanatic33:
Simpsonsfanatic33 Featured By Owner May 16, 2016
I liked the ending to this episode. Sabrina becomes good and haunter and kadabra have a good laugh. Poor team rocket in the cement though.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Nov 10, 2016
She deserved to rot for everything she did. Let me put it this way:

if if I were in the shoes of Yugi more his friends I'd beat the shit put of Bakura or Marik for what their evil selves did because they got issues. Especially Marik if I was Joey and especially Bakura for being so weak-willed and soft. Split personalities also need to be held accountable for what they do in that persons stead. It's not like autism where you can't control it, you're literally another person mentally in this sense snd this that other you is dead but still you. I dunno.
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:iconsimpsonsfanatic33:
Simpsonsfanatic33 Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2016
I take back the comment I said earlier on this. This was a terrible episode. In the game Ash earned the badge by winning against Sabrina fair and square but in this piece of shit Haunter just made her laugh and she was forced to give Ash the badge instead of letting Ash earn it by continuing with the match. I watched it again on Netflix and realized it you know and you don't need to insult me. I have autism you know.
Reply
:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2016
I'm autistic too, Aspergers. I was only stating stuff, I didn't mean to get nasty. I can see where the people who like this episode are coming from, but it isn't for me.
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:iconsimpsonsfanatic33:
Simpsonsfanatic33 Featured By Owner Nov 11, 2016
Me neither.
Reply
:iconfrancisjeremyxavyer:
FrancisJeremyXavyer Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2016  Student Writer
IMHO, Haunter was indeed a dick, but the entire outcome is actually what I had hoped for.

Personally, I account the rest as Early Installment weirdness coupled with a bit of laziness but not unwatchable.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2016
Yes, but all the same Ash should've never had his hand held throghout Kanto like he's still in diapers. He didn't deserve half his badges and as much as I hate to say ti he didn't deserve to even enter the Indigo League, let alone catch any Pokemon beyond Butterfree and Pidgeotto. He got better though.
Reply
:iconfrancisjeremyxavyer:
FrancisJeremyXavyer Featured By Owner Apr 25, 2016  Student Writer
Eh, to each their own.
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Really? This was one of the best episodes! The entire Sabrina arc was awesome!

Also, Sabrina was a very mentally unwell character. That's not the same as "evil". Giovanni's a sociopath, Sabrina's not. There's a clearly marked difference between them.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
To each their own. And Giovanni isn't a sociopath because he has no personality to begin with compared to his game and Origns counterparts.
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Origins maybe, but the games? He was nothing more than a one-note evil gangster there who then went "Sorry, changed my mind about being evil!" at the last minute because you beat him at something that was completely unrelated to Team Rocket. Giovanni in the anime has a lot more of a character compared to that.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
No , not really, he's an even worse one note villain in the anime. He's treated as a malevolent powerhouse but he doesn't do ANYTHING! At least in the games you got to see his power up close before the gym battle. I can't WAIT to do an atrocity on Battle of the Badge!
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
You haven't seen Mewtwo Returns or the Meloetta arc in BW, have you?
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Non-canon and who fucking cares it's best wishes!
Reply
:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Nothing says that Mewtwo Returns isn't noncanon and Best Wishes, like it or not, IS canon, so Giovanni did get to do stuff on the show at least once.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Yes but he's practically a nonentity for the most part.
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(1 Reply)
:iconcyatommorrow:
Cyatommorrow Featured By Owner Jan 14, 2016
I'm glad you did this as an atrocity. Basically I can sum it up as Ash has the dumbest luck ever. How he didn't die again or become a doll is a mystery to me. Sabrina' mom is suffering from Stockholm syndrome and I guess it's implied that Sabrina turned her back into a human after the episode ended. Again that's me assuming this since Sabrina grew a heart in like one second.

It's a real cluster fuck of an episode. However, I still think that it is possible that Sabrina's psychic abilities became so powerful that it kept her from growing as a person. I think that is the symbolism of her playing with dolls. She was trapped as a four or five year old mentally for a decade because her powers took over her entire personality. This could explain why she found the explosion so funny because I didn't even laugh at that when I was freaking eight or nine years old.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Jun 29, 2016
True dat. I guess that would explain Sabrina'a change of heart but it's still credibly rushed and comes from nowhere.
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:iconcyatommorrow:
Cyatommorrow Featured By Owner Jun 30, 2016
Certainly a case of the writers being lazy. 
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:iconjules2005:
Jules2005 Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Team Rocket made all of that fuss when dangling off the building about dying and they only end up covered in cement.

Those 3 are ridiculous as fuck.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2015
They should be more aware of the 4th wall than they were there.
Reply
:iconflutterbunny76:
Flutterbunny76 Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2015
My score:
CIA: 3
CIV: 2
LW: 7
Ann: 8
DC: 6
UC: 0
RM: 3
LPV: 1
UI: 5
CD: 4
Total: 39/100
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2015
Check it out now.
Reply
:iconflutterbunny76:
Flutterbunny76 Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2015
Better for sure
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:iconpinkduskstone:
PinkDuskStone Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015
Psychic Types used to be SO cheap back then, and it does kind of make sense with Bulbasaur being afraid of fighting Kadabra since the Grass Pokémon is also Poison.

Little Sabrina actually represents the childlike innocence that she forgot since she was so serious about her Psychic training (why she wants to play). Little Sabrina still has some of Big Sabrina's cruel nature which is why she acts creepy. And the implication that Sabrina's mom has Stockholm syndrome...

It IS a happy ending in that Sabrina remembers to enjoy life again after forgetting how to do so for years. Since this was the original Kanto, Psychic Types were too powerful for most people to handle.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015
You know what? That's actually a very smart and incite full view of this episode indeed. It doesn't excuse her for all the damage she's caused through the years though. Total Karma Houdini.
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:iconpinkduskstone:
PinkDuskStone Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015
Yeah, sometimes the anime has a moral myopia in favor of a good ending and the heroes. For instance, when James commands Koffing to Sludge Pikachu in the eyes, that's treated as a dirty trick, but when Pikachu bites, claws, and turns Cubone's helmet around, that's treated as thinking on his feet. The anime is practically the only part of Pokémon that's still aimed at kids.
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:iconmeta527ii:
meta527ii Featured By Owner Aug 15, 2015
I DESPISE that stupid doll! It's appearance looks like someone's taking a blow torch to my eyes and its behavior is just ANNOYING! I'm glad that stupid thing disappeared at the end of the episode, that stupid doll deserved it.
Reply
:iconkyrtuck:
kyrtuck Featured By Owner Jul 16, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
As I remeber, most of the times Ash used Pigeotto, it got beaten quickly.
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:iconjules2005:
Jules2005 Featured By Owner Edited Dec 1, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
His Pidgeotto was able to best Misty's Starmie, however, and it was a Psychic type.

So, I don't see how Kadabra would have been anymore of a problem, especially considering it's lack of Ice moves.
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:iconkyrtuck:
kyrtuck Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2015  Hobbyist General Artist
The show ignored the game mechanics whenever the plot warranted it, which was a whole lot of times.  Like the fact that the Pokemon never seemed limited by just 4 moves, or Ah's Krabby evolving into a Kingler awfully quick.
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:iconjules2005:
Jules2005 Featured By Owner Dec 2, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
The Kingler thing can be explained with video game logic.

Maybe when Ash caught Krabby, it was at a close enough level to be evolved into Kingler in that little amount of time.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015
True, but it's pretty cool nonetheless.
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:iconlinkzilla:
Linkzilla Featured By Owner Jun 27, 2015
Yeah; I personally think the first two episodes were better; especially the one before this. The idea of Ash and Pikachu actually dying, and playing around with the Ghost Pokemon AS Ghosts themselves, was actually interesting.
But this finale was just too bizarre. It begs the question of...why did Sabrina only shrink the trio the first time they fought, and NOT turn them into dolls?
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
I dunno - I thought the Lavendar Tower episode was weaker 'cause it got a little too silly in the second act when it really ought to have gotten scary.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Sep 1, 2015
Because she's a filthy Bitch?
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:iconseiya-meteorite:
Seiya-Meteorite Featured By Owner Jun 16, 2015  Hobbyist Filmographer
Episode to me looks OK/meh, but my interest in Pokemon is waning.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Jun 17, 2015
Fair enough.
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:icontlwartist:
TLWArtist Featured By Owner Jun 6, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I miss the classic episodes of Pokémon.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2015
Even those can be bad.
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
True, but I feel like this wasn't one of them.
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:icondisneycow82:
Disneycow82 Featured By Owner May 22, 2015  Hobbyist Filmographer
Haunter may have been a cute and interesting Pokémon, but come on! What the hell was he thinking just ditching Ash and his friends like that, only for Brock and Misty to be turned into dolls for trying to run away? What a coward! I always hated Sabrina, because there is nothing in her backstory to ever make me feel sorry for her, especially when she turns against her parents for whatever reason, turning her own mother into a doll. There was never a real reason or excuse for Sabrina turning evil which is the biggest problems of this episode. Sabrina the sociopath got away with her crimes in the end all because she ended up laughing :rolls: which solves everything. Nothing here makes enough common sense at all. Ash really was a stupid idiot to not realize the mysterious man was her father the whole time. The police would have been powerless against Sabrina if they did call them. Where is Mewtwo to replace the cowardly Haunter when you need him? Would a badge really be worth anything over your friends and life? Sabrina's mom was a total and stupid idiot for calling Sabrina a good daughter :lol: :rolls: How stupid can a real parent be to say that, after their child cursed them before going their own way? What a total moron! I guess she is much happier being a doll than a human. How does laughing make everything alright in the end after what happened? She needed to be facing the consequences of her evil actions, not get off scot free with laughing.
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:icontherisenchaos:
TheRisenChaos Featured By Owner Mar 9, 2016
Sabrina lost her mind to her still developing psychic powers when she was a child, and when it got to be too much, she rejected her own heart too. The episode explained that. And you call her a sociopath but I do not think that means what you think it means.
Reply
:iconhexidextrous:
Hexidextrous Featured By Owner May 19, 2015
I never really been that much into Pokémon myself, but from the looks of your review, I think the writers confused "Psychic" with "Magic." Some of those things don't seem really like Psychic-type abilities, but more Magic, and WAY too overpowered too.
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:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Jun 7, 2015
It does fell a hell of a lot like magic. But even magic has rules to it. Sabrina doesn't have any rules to what she can do. She's worse than Raven in that regard.
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:iconhexidextrous:
Hexidextrous Featured By Owner Edited Jun 7, 2015
Don't forget also Kyle the Conjurer in Fanboy and Chum-Chum is another big offender of this thing.
Like MrEnter once remarked in his review of Fanboy and Chum-Chum: Cold War (and something show writers REALLY need to take into account more). A quote of his I really like.

"Having a Magic User in your show means MORE (Consistent) rules, not less."

I think some show writers just think that just because Magic defies the laws of science and physics and stuff, that means the Spellcasters can do whatever the hell they want to with their powers. Uh, no that doesn't mean a free card to use anything you want.


BTW, Psychic is more like mental abilities such as telekinesis, telepathy, illusion-projecting, mind-reading, Mind-Attacking/distortion, Mind Control, and some elemental stuff at times and some stuff like mental shields. NOT Transformation of victims and bending reality however you please.
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:iconstreetgals9000:
streetgals9000 Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2015
I had the same the question as you are, dude.

Why the hell Ash didn't keep Haunter in his pokeball !?!?  
Reply
:iconjules2005:
Jules2005 Featured By Owner Dec 1, 2015  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Since Haunter technically was never really Ash's Pokemon to begin with, it wouldn't have had to help him at all.
Reply
:iconregulas314:
Regulas314 Featured By Owner Apr 16, 2015
He never fuckign caught it, he really believes a wild Pokemon will assist him of his own free will.
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