The episode opens with Ash, Dawn, Brock, and Barry on a blimp headed for Canalave City. When the blimp lands and the gang exits, they see two photographers. Naturally, they want to take their picture, but Barry doesn't want to. Eventually, they make him do it. He brings out his Empoleon, and the rest of the gang bring out all of their Pokémon. When they're ready, the photographers order the Trainers to move back. When they do, they fall into a pitfall trap. The photographers' Meowth yells, "Say cheese!", then captures their Pokémon in a net. It turns out to be another scheme made by Team Rocket!
Barry orders Empoleon to use Hydro Pump, and Ash orders Chimchar to use Flamethrower. The moves collide with a Haze from Jessie's Seviper and a Bullet Seed from James' Carnivine. The result is a huge explosion that sends the Pokémon all flying in different directions.
Coincidentally, Pikachu, Pachirisu, Mime Jr., and Meowth all land in the same place, meaning that Meowth is stuck with Pikachu. He devises a plan to earn its trust and eventually capture it, along with the rest of the twerps' Pokémon. He tells Pikachu that he doesn't want to be with Team Rocket anymore, and that he wants to travel with the twerps. He makes up a story to convince Pikachu that he's telling the truth.
Meanwhile, Ash and friends are walking on a bridge, with Barry and Ash arguing back and forth. Just then, they find Staravia and Gliscor flying around, looking for Ash. At the same time, Team Rocket sees the two flying Pokémon from their balloon in the distance and they attempt to capture them. Ash orders Staravia to attack, but James launches a fake Staravia designed to look like a female. Staravia falls for the trick and chases after the fake Staravia. Ash then orders Gliscor to use X-Scissor. Jessie tells James to launch a fake Gliscor, only to find out that he didn't make one. Gliscor cuts through the balloon, sending Team Rocket blasting off to another part of the city. Croagunk is then seen passing by on a boat.
Empoleon, Piplup, Happiny, and Grotle are wandering around the city looking for their Trainers. Piplup always convinces them that it knows the way out, only to find a dead end, over and over again. Grotle eventually gets so tired that it curls up & Happiny has to carry it.
Ash and friends find Sudowoodo, Buneary, Swinub, Ambipom, Buizel, and Chimchar. Barry is disappointed that Empoleon isn't with them. Meanwhile, Jessie and James are still searching for Meowth and Mime Jr. At first, Meowth is happy to see them, but he remembers the story he told Pikachu, who becomes very suspicious. Meowth suddenly runs off with Pikachu, Mime Jr., and Pachirisu. Just then, Ash and friends round the corner, only to find Team Rocket. They start fighting, then go off in separate directions.
Meanwhile, Staravia is in the forest with the fake female Staravia, but then it suddenly falls into a nearby stream. Staravia looks around, confused, wondering where the "Staravia" went.
Soon afterward, the gang finds Piplup's group, then Pikachu's group. Meowth tells the twerps the story he told Pikachu. At first, they don't believe him, but they are eventually convinced. Ash and friends find Team Rocket in another part of the city, and Barry tells Jessie and James that Meowth's days with Team Rocket are over. Ash orders Buizel to use Water Gun, Dawn tells Piplup to use BubbleBeam, and Barry commands Empoleon to use Hydro Pump.
Meowth starts remembering all of the times and the blastoffs that Team Rocket has been through. He suddenly attacks Empoleon with Fury Swipes, and decides that his heart will always be with Team Rocket. Team Rocket is sent blasting off yet again. Strangely, Meowth is happy.
Brock suddenly remembers that Croagunk wasn't found. Then, he sees a pretty woman and does his usual romantic advances. Then Croagunk jabs him, as usual, causing him to find it. The episode closes with Barry heading off to Iron Island to train.
- The dub version of this episode first aired in the UK on April 16, 2009 along with Shield with a Twist!.
- Music from Celebi: Voice of the Forest, Lucario and the Mystery of Mew and Pokémon Ranger and the Temple of the Sea are used as background music.
- Professor Oak's lecture: Altaria
- This episode implies that Ash's Staravia is male as it falls in love with a robot that is designed to resemble a female Staravia (including a smaller dot on its forehead); however, the issue regarding Staravia's gender is still unclear due to the fact that another Staravia besides Ash's has yet to appear in the anime.
- Pokémon.com's online preview for this episode included a line exclaiming "Staraptor finds romance!" Although this is probably an error, it unintentionally spoils an event that happens 15 episodes later.
- The title card music for the English dub has changed.
- Jessie makes a reference to A Maze-ing Race!.
- The DVD release of this episode incorrectly lists its title as Jumping Rock Ship!.
- When the move Teeter Dance was used, everyone should have been affected. However, Seviper and Empoleon were not.
- In one of the boat scenes, Croagunk's Japanese voice can be heard.
- When Pikachu and Pachirisu find Ash and friends Piplup is on Dawn's head. Then when the camera angle changes to a front view Piplup isn't on her head anymore.
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