Electric Shock Showdown (でんげきたいけつ！クチバジム Electric Battle! Vermilion Gym) is the 14th episode of Pokémon: Indigo League.
After a long journey, the heroes make it to Vermilion City. After the lunch, Ash, Brock and Misty go inside the Gym and meet the giant, Lt. Surge. Lt. Surge's Raichu is quite powerful and defeats Pikachu. Ash, not wanting to give up, is offered a Thunder Stone to get Pikachu evolved into a Raichu. Will he evolve his first Pokémon or make a different strategy to defeat Lt. Surge?
After two weeks of traveling, Ash, Misty, and Brock have finally reached Vermilion City. Brock and Misty cannot wait to eat but Ash wants to go to the gym first. Brock tells him to wait because Pikachu wasn't in good enough shape to battle. Ash agrees and they all head to the Pokémon Center. At the Pokémon Center, Nurse Joy promises that she would take good care of Pikachu. Nurse Joy notices that they looked surprised. She explains that all of the Nurse Joys were related and they all look alike. She claims that she is the cutest one and Brock agreed. Suddenly, the doors open up and Chansey and a trainer run in. On a rolling table is a very hurt Rattata. Brock wonders what had happened and Nurse Joy reports that is the 15th one this month. They go to a room with a lot of hurt Pokémon in it. Pokémon are Caterpie, Oddish, Sandshrew, and Rattata are they saw before. Nurse Joy explains that they all lost to the Vermilion City Gym Leader, Lt. Surge. Ash starts to get worried that Lt. Surge will be tough to beat and Misty makes fun of him for getting scared.
Misty reminds Ash he got his first two badges because the Gym Leaders had felt sorry for him. Ash claims that a Badge is a Badge. Misty replies if Ash is so strong, why doesn't he prove it at Vermilion City's Gym. Misty reminds him that she and Brock gave Ash his badges, so they would look bad if he got beaten by Lt. Surge. Ash goes to Misty, but Nurse Joy stops him, reminding him that he's in a hospital. Nurse Joy jokes that since they were fighting, they must really care about each other. Ash and Misty angrily and quickly deny this. They all hear the sound that meant Ash's Pokémon were fully healed. Pikachu happily eats an apple and Ash lets him know it was time to go to the Gym. Just then, another trainer with a hurt Pidgey comes in and Misty said that they must have come from the Gym.
Pikachu is scared and does not want to go to the Gym. Ash gets mad at him for being a coward and Pikachu wonders if Ash cared whether Pikachu was going to end up like the Pidgey. Ash tells that Pikachu had a point, but tells him not to worry because they were going to win. Pikachu still does not want to go and protests so much that he electrocutes Ash. Misty says that Ash and Pikachu must care a lot about each other if they fight that much. Outside the Gym, Misty tells Ash that it isn't too late to back out now, but Ash still wants to go in and win. They end up fighting again and Brock stops by asking if they were ever going to go inside. They enter the Gym and Ash says he's ready to earn his 3rd badge. Lt. Surge's male assistant say there's another one for the ER room and Lt. Surge enters. Lt. Surge says he's happy his next challenger is a cutie and says he will not go easy on Misty. Misty says that she's not the challenger, for Ash is. Lt. Surge laughs when he sees that Ash had a Pikachu, calling them little baby Pokémon, making Pikachu mad. Ash asks why he was making fun of Pikachu and Lt. Surge responded by showing off his Raichu.
Lt. Surge says that it wasn't too late to back out now, but Ash stands on the spot, as does Pikachu. Lt. Surge laughs again and said that an Electric type Pokémon is only useful if it has been evolved and knows all the moves it can learn. Ash said there's more to Pokémon than forcing them to evolve, liking Pikachu the way it is. Pikachu is really mad and starts sparking, as it wants to battle Raichu. Brock is surprised when he sees how ready Pikachu is to battle. Lt. Surge says that they would soon learn that fighting the big boys would be a shocking experience. Pikachu and Raichu soon battle in the arena. The battle starts, as Ash tells Pikachu to use ThunderShock. Raichu is not affected by it and uses ThunderShock itself, knocking Pikachu backward. Brock realizes electric attacks wouldn't work and Ash should recall Pikachu. Ash tries to call Pikachu to return, but Pikachu refuses. Lt. Surge gives Pikachu credit for being gutsy and tells Raichu to use Mega Kick, knocking Pikachu backwards again.
Outside, Team Rocket is watching the battle. They think that since Pikachu is getting beaten up, they shouldn't steal it after all. Meowth thinks that they should steal Raichu and James whacks him on the head and he and Jessie start cheering for Pikachu. Lt. Surge orders Raichu to use ThunderShock, which defeats Pikachu. At the Pokémon Center, Pikachu wakes up and Ash is happy that it is okay. Pikachu is still sad that it got beaten up by Raichu. Nurse Joy comes in and said there might be a way for Pikachu to win. She says she found a Thunderstone and gives it to Ash to use on Pikachu. Pikachu whacks it away, refusing it. Outside, Meowth starts crying, explaining that Pikachu would never want to be Raichu's equal, it wanted to win as a Pikachu for the respect of Pikachu everywhere and it will defend it's honor and that of its trainer. Brock has an idea for a way Pikachu could beat Raichu.
The next day, they all walk over to the Gym to try it out. However, they are blocked by Team Rocket, who show support for Pikachu and run off. Brock is disturbed, but Misty cheerfully waves them off. They enter the Gym and once again, where Ash demands a rematch. Lt. Surge laughs, saying that they must have come up with a new way to lose. Surge sends out Raichu, who uses Tail Whip. Raichu uses Body Slam, hitting Pikachu. Lt. Surge orders another Body Slam to finish things off, but Pikachu gets up and uses Agility. Raichu tries to use Body Slam on Pikachu, but Pikachu is way too fast for it. Brock admits the strategy: Lt. Surge evolved Raichu too soon and it never got a chance to learn Agility.
Lt. Surge is mad, having Raichu use Thunderbolt, which blows out all the windows in the Gym. Lt. Surge saw that Pikachu dodged the attack by standing on its tail. Lt. Surge orders Raichu to use ThunderShock again, but Raichu used up all its electricity. Pikachu uses Quick Attack and Raichu uses Take Down. Both Pokémon exchange blows, but Pikachu was quicker and defeats Raichu. Everyone congratulates Ash and Pikachu, even Raichu, which embarrasses Pikachu. Ash is given his Thunder Badge and gives Pikachu a victory hug, shocking Ash.
Outside, Team Rocket walks towards the sunset and James realizes that they never tried to catch Pikachu and they wasted the whole day cheering for "the good guys".
- "I know why you're surprised. I look like all the other nurses don't I? My first cousin works in Pewter City, and my second cousin works in Viridian City. I think I'm the prettiest one, don't you?" - Nurse Joy
- "Yeah." - Brock
- "Hello, I've come for a Pokémon battle, to earn a Thunder Badge." - Ash
- "Hey boss, another victim for the emergency ward." - Male Assistant
- "Which one?" - Lt. Surge
- "Is he the Gym Leader you have to beat?" Misty
- "Welcome to *hugs Misty* Vermilion Gym! Oh, my next challenge is a cute one. Don't think I'll go easy on you." - Lt. Surge
- "Excuse me, I'm not the challenger." - Misty
- "Then who?" - Lt. Surge
- "Me, that's who." - Ash
- "Hm? Oh you. Ok baby." - Lt. Surge
- "Gr, I'm no baby! My name is Ash Ketchum." - Ash
- "Heh! I call everybody who loses to me baby." - Lt. Surge
- "Pikachu, our lucky star is shining today." - Ash
- "Where? I don't see it. How can you see a star in the middle of the day?" - Misty
- "I don't mean it's actually shining. Let's go Pikachu." - Ash
- "A strategy? So they've been plannin' a new way to lose. Go Raichu!" - Lt. Surge
- "Ok Raichu, give it a Thunderbolt. Shut it down!" - Lt. Surge
- "What a shocking story." - Jessie
- "That was quite a tail." - James
- "And now you've both been pun-ished. *laughs*" - Meowth
- "Koffing!" - James's Koffing
- "Drat, we wasted this episode cheering the good guys." - James
- "Ahh!" - Jessie and Meowth
- "Right James. Better luck next time." - Narrator
- The "Who's that Pokémon?" of this episode is Raichu.
- This is the first of few episodes where a main characters Pokémon battles its evolved form.
- This is also the first episode where Team Rocket does not try to capture Pikachu.
- The battle against Lt. Surge in Pokémon Yellow is based on this episode. Surge's Raichu has the same moves in Yellow as the Anime.
- Though she was there, and except for laughter, Lt. Surge's female assistant didn't have any lines.
- If you translate the Japanese version of this episode, Lt. Surge uses Profanity.
- James breaks the fourth wall at the end of this episode by saying that he Jessie and Meowth "wasted the whole episode cheering the good guys".
- This is one of the many episodes where Team Rocket doesn't blast off.
- After Ash proclaims to Pikachu that their lucky star is shining for them today, Misty asks if they can see a star in the middle of the day. Oddly and Interestingly enough, the Sun is a star and it's presence indicates that it's daytime.
- This is the first episode in which Ash earns a badge fair and square.
- This episode was one of the best of season 1.
- Pikachu whacked the Thunderstone from Ash's hand with its tail, but in later episodes, including Climbing the Tower of Success!, it is shown that if Pikachu even touches the Thunderstone at all, it will evolve.
- When Team Rocket saw the re-match, Jessie's and James' gloves were missing.
- In the "Official Pokemon Handbook", it says that Raichu is so powerful that it uses its tail for ground but when Raichu came out of its Poké Ball, it didn't use the tail for the ground.