A Poached Ego! (Japanese: ロケット団！みだれひっかきでサヨウナラ！！ Team Rocket! Goodbye to a Disturbed Scratch!!) is the 6th episode of Pokémon: Advanced.
Our heroes are headed for Rustboro City, where Ash hopes to have his first real Gym battle in Hoenn. Team Rocket is making their way along the same path when they stumble upon a cage full of Ekans. Jessie is delighted that their work has been done for them and orders Arbok to attack. Arbok can't manage to attack the helpless Ekans, however, because it remembers when it used to be an Ekans. Jessie is sympathetic. James soon makes a similar concession when they find a cage of Koffing that Weezing will not hurt. The cages belong to a poacher named Rico who uses his Fearow and Pupitar to chase off Team Rocket. Team Rocket returns to the scene, now hoping to free the Ekans and Koffing. Things turn dangerous when Rico's Pupitar evolves into a Tyranitar, and Team Rocket is forced to make the ultimate sacrifice for the Pokémon that they love.
Ash, Brock and Max travel to Rustboro City, but May (as usual) lags behind. Ash knows they had a break, so sees they have to have another one. Max notices on his PokéNav a Pokémon Center nearby, so Brock encourages May to go. May lets Brock's arm out and spots a strange object sticking in a tree. They all notice that the nearby trees have been scratched for some reason...
At the Center, Brock goes to charm Nurse Joy, but May pushes him aside Nurse Joy, thinking this is the same Joy from Oldale Town. Joy explains that it is her older sister. Max shows May a picture of all Nurse Joy-s in Hoenn, saying they all look the same. Brock disagrees, stating that all Nurse Joy-s have something unique. Officer Jenny appears and Brock goes to her to charm her. Max shows May a picture of all Officer Jenny-s in Hoenn region as well. Jenny came to tell that she saw some poachers in the region and wants to check if there are any injured Pokémon Nurse Joy might have healed recently. Ash gives Jenny a part of a net they found in the forest, so they go to the site.
Team Rocket spy again, planning to steal the Pokémon from the Center. Meowth proposes to have an original plan, but as he is thinking, he slides down from the hill. As he stands up, he sees a tent, revealing to be a cage full of injured Ekans. Meowth communicates with them, learning they were captured by a poacher. Meowth tries to free them, but gets electrocuted by the cage. Jessie and James come down on Arbok and Weezing. They all agree it would be best to free them, for they can catch them. Jessie orders Arbok to use Acid, but Arbok cries because it was an Ekans before and does not want them to be hurt. Jessie says that Meowth and James should skip their meal to feed the Ekans (as they will feed them), so orders Arbok to attack the cage using Acid. Nothing happened, so James orders his Weezing to use Sludge, but a Fearow attacks him.
The poacher appears, starting asking questions. Weezing spots that the poacher took some Koffing. The poacher introduces himself as Rico and intimidates Jessie and James to give him Weezing and Arbok to him, who refuse. Rico's Fearow uses Agility, while Arbok uses Poison Sting and Weezing Sludge. Fearow dodges and uses Fury Attack. Fearow attacks with Drill Peck, though gets stopped by Arbok, who wrapped its beak. Rico calls his Fearow back and calls Pupitar. Using Sandstorm, Pupitar blasts them off, while Rico thinks those were worthless Pokémon. Back at the forest, May shows where they found the net, when Max shows the tire tracks on the ground. Team Rocket are angered about Rico, though they notice a pack of Beedrill nearby. The Beedrill attack, while Team Rocket flees. A Cacnea is blocking their way, though the Cacnea attacks the Beedrill. James offers the Cacnea some cookies for the help, while Arbok feels the soundwaves, knowing where Rico is.
Ash's Taillow scouts, finding Rico driving his vehicle with the captured Pokémon. Taillow comes back to the gang, leading them to the poacher. The poacher stops, finding Jessie's Arbok. While he prepares to capture it, Weezing uses SmokeScreen to Rico. Fearow blows the smoke, revealing Meowth trying to open the cage. Despite the electricity, Meowth does not fail. Fearow goes to attack Meowth with Drill Peck, but Arbok heabutts it, knocking the Fearow onto the cage and electrocuting it. Meowth opens the cage, freeing the Ekans and Koffing out. Rico is about to capture them, but Arbok and Weezing attack him with Poison Sting and Sludge.
Rico sends his Pupitar, who evolves into a Tyranitar. Weezing uses SmokeScreen, but Tyranitar uses Hyper Beam, despite the heavy smoke. The Hyper Beam caused a hole, but Jessie brings her Wobbuffet, as it can reflect attacks. Unfortunately, the Hyper Beam was too quick for Wobbuffet to reflect the attack. Tyranitar uses Hyper Beam again, destroying everything nearby. Jessie and James then decide that Arbok and Weezing should lead the Ekans and Koffing out. Despite their own will to stay with Team Rocket, they go from the area. Tyranitar is about to use Hyper Beam, but Meowth scratches it. However, Tyranitar uses the attack on Meowth instead. Jessie, James and Meowth attack the Tyranitar, getting hurt from Tyranitar's attacks. Weezing and Arbok witness everything, but still continue on with their mission to get Ekans and Koffing away. Jessie, James and Meowth are beaten, but they still try to stop Rico from capturing Pokémon. However, Rico leaves them.
The heroes and Jenny intercept Rico. Rico sends Fearow, but Pikachu uses Thunderbolt, defeating it. Rico is about to bring Tyranitar, but Jenny's Growlithe seizes the Poké Balls, so Rico is arrested. Rico tells the Pokémon escaped, but Ash is glad there are some good people, unlike Team Rocket. Jessie and James worry about Arbok and Weezing, but Cacnea appears. James opens the cookie bag and gives the cookie to Cacnea. The episode ends with Cacnea joining Team Rocket, while also stinging James.
- "So not fair... I didn't even get a chance to talk to her this time!" - Brock
- The "Who's that Pokémon?" is Larvitar.
- This is the last Jessie's Arbok and James' Weezing are seen.
- At the end of this episode, James catches a Cacnea who has a similar comic effect as Victreebel.
- The song that plays during the scene involving Arbok and Weezing leaving and watching Rico and Team Rocket fighting is Tears of Life from Mewtwo Strikes Back.