Episode #255 - Lapras of Luxury
Our heroes are stopped at a Pokemon Centre while on the way back to New Bark Town. They get a call from Professor Elm who asks Ash to pick up a Pokemon egg for him, from the Pokemon Marine Laboratory. Brock thinks this egg must be important if the Professor took the trouble to track them down.
When they arrive at the lab, a woman rushes past them to a dock where she instructs a Lanturn to use its radar signal underwater while she monitors a display. Brock flirts with her but she tells him to be quiet because she's listening for underwater singing. In a few moments a group of Lapras surfaces. One of them comes forward, and Ash recognises it as his old friend from the Orange Islands. The woman overhears and realises that this is the information she had been looking for about the Lapras migration route. She introduces herself as Naomi, the director of the Marine Pokemon Lab, and she studies the habits of marine Pokemon.
Inside, she shows them a map of the ocean and explains that Lapras know when and where to go by the temperature and currents in the ocean. They communicate with songs, but little is known about the songs themselves. She uses her Lanturn's supersonic ability to find out where the songs come from.
Team Rocket is in a Gyarados submarine, watching the Lapras. They make a plan to steal them and make money by renting the Lapras for a marine taxi service.
Naomi shows Ash a green Pokemon egg. She doesn't know what kind it is, it had been recovered from poachers who stole it from a Pokemon preserve. Professor Elm wants it because he's a member of the Johto League Pokemon Preservation Council. Just then, the Lapras call from outside. Ash's friend wants to play, so Ash spends the rest of the day playing with and talking to his Lapras.
It's evening when Ash hears a noise from shore: the rest of the Lapras are caught in a net! The others run out of the lab to see Team Rocket's sub, but the trio promptly escapes under cover of Weezing's Smokescreen. The chase is on; Ash's Lapras leads while Naomi and the kids follow in a small yellow submarine.
As Team Rocket makes their escape, they run into problems. The Lapras in the net struggle and manage to get out. However before the last two can get free, they and the sub are caught in a giant underwater whirlpool!
Lapras and the kids find the rest of the group, but immediately see that two are missing, specifically the group leader and Lapras' mother. Ash's Lapras leads the rest of the group around the whirlpool, singing. Naomi listens to them on her radio and says that Lapras can hear even the faintest songs, even above the noise of the current. Eventually they pinpoint the location of a reply on a nearby island.
Team Rocket is beached, along with the two remaining Lapras. The rest arrive, followed by Naomi's sub. Ash challenges them, and they attack with Arbok and Weezing. Ash is ready with Pikachu, but Brock has Crobat deal with them. The two Lapras are freed, whereupon they turn on Team Rocket with their Ice Beams. Pikachu gets the last word and sends them blasting off.
The next morning, the Lapras depart. As they swim away, the leader lets Ash's Lapras take over the head position. Naomi explains that the leader was so impressed with Ash's Lapras' maturity, it handed over the leadership. Ash is proud of his Lapras and renews his pledge to work hard so he can one day become a Pokemon Master. With the egg safely in a container, the three friends continue on toward New Bark Town.