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Tricks of the Trade (ソーナンスとポケモンこうかんかい!! Wobbuffet and the Pokémon Exchange!!) is the 30th episode of Pokémon: The Johto Journeys.


With Goldenrod City as their new destination, Ash and co. end up in a town with an annual Tauros festival. While there they meet a boy who wants to trade his Wobbuffet for another Pokémon. Elsewhere Team Rocket comes up with another plan to steal Pokémon. Will it work, will the young man have his Wobbuffet traded for something else, and why does that salesman look familiar?

Episode plot

As the heroes walk past the beach, they spot a boy trying to make his Pokémon, Wobbuffet, look better. The heroes introduce themselves to the boy, who is Benny. He tells he wants to get Wobbuffet to look better for swapping it; trading it with a similarly strong Pokémon. Misty sees it she wouldn't take it, but after being reminded by Brock, she compliments it. Benny would like to train a new Pokémon, though he did train Wobbuffet for some time. With the heroes asking, Benny takes them to the place where the trading will be commenced. Team Rocket wash their faces, though Jessie gets licked by Lickitung and James gets bitten by Victreebel. Meowth comes and tells there will be a swap event in this town, so Team Rocket goes to steal some of them. After them comes Snubbull, who followed them.

As they travel through the festival, the heroes notice some Tauros running about. A man tells them if one touches Tauros' horn when running, he/she will get a trophy. Ash attempts to do it, but seeing the Tauros, he steps aside, thinking he'll do it next year. Nevertheless, he sees Tauros battling in the arena and calls Prof. Oak to give Tauros to him. Oak reminds him he has six Pokémon and has to send one to his lab. He asks of Ash to send Heracross to study it sucking the tree sap. Ash does that and receives Tauros. He goes to the stadium to challenge Fernando, the current winner of Tauros battles. Ash sends Tauros and declares, along with Fernando, to use Take Down attack. Tauros clash and neither side does not back down. Benny and Wobbuffet see Ash on screen, while Jessie and James sell drinks and food, planning to steal the Pokémon. Fernando's Tauros gets the lead, but Ash's Tauros makes a comeback and sends Fernando's Tauros in the air, defeating him.

The heroes see many trainers bragging about their Pokémon to trade and understand they trained them hard to be traded. Benny thinks about trading Wobbuffet for Ash's Tauros. Upon seeing Ash, Benny goes to ask him, but other trainers come first, asking Ash to trade Tauros. Ash refuses to trade, making the trainers surprised, though Benny sees trading with Ash is not an option. Benny asks a person to trade for Scyther, but the person is not amused and passes. Benny realizes that it will take time for someone to convince Wobbuffet is a good Pokémon. The heroes come to Benny and offer help with trading his Wobbuffet, so Benny agrees. Jessie and James introduce their newest trade machine, which also levels-up a Pokémon. However, inside Meowth just places the empty Poké Balls to exchange with real Poké Balls. As they all do that, Snubbull follows the trail.

Misty scouts for Benny's choice of trading, but does not see anything. Psyduck emerges from its Poké Ball, though is warned by Misty she could trade it. Some children and trainers come to trade Psyduck, believing it has a brain and a good look, but Misty refuses, but is surprised at those compliments for Psyduck. Ash suggests a girl to trade Sentret with Wobbuffet, but she refuses. Brock reasons with a trainer with a Stantler, telling he might attract girls with Wobbuffet, with Ash filling in he'll get a warranty. The trainer accepts the deal and goes with Benny to trade it. James is glad to have earned money from the scam and is thrown a Magikarp. A trader tells him that Magikarp lay 1000 eggs and those eggs may lay 1000 more Magikarp. The trader tells James he could sell each one for 100 dollars and he could earn 10 billion dollars. The trader tells James he'll throw in a manual and food for Magikarp for 30 days for 100 dollars. James accepts, but remembers an awfully similar deal at St. Anne and realizes that trader is the one currently bargaining with him. The salesman sees he is spotted and runs away, but James chases him.

As they are about to make trade, the man sees a Hoothoot and leaves Benny with his Wobbuffet. James chases the salesman, who bumps into Jessie, sending her flying away. Jessie lands on the trading machine and drops a Poké Ball onto the machine, initializing the trade. Jessie takes her Ball back, not realizing she traded with Benny. James searches for the salesman, but Meowth stops him, as he warns the people realized their trade machine is a fraud. Team Rocket undisguised themselves and the heroes appear, trying to get the real Poké Balls back. However, Meowth launches a rope, binding the trainers. They start up a vacuum and take the trainers' Poké Balls. Ash remembers the Tauros and sends his (with the others as well), who all use Take Down. Tauros attack Team Rocket, who bump into the balloon and blast off, with the Poké Balls returning to the trainers. After getting free, the Balls are empty, so the heroes go to face Team Rocket for this crime.

Team Rocket are pleased, as they stole the Pokémon and tricked everyone again. Their foes come, so Jessie sends Lickitung and Ash with Chikorita. Surprisingly, Jessie sends out a Wobbuffet. Jessie realizes that she accidentally traded Lickitung for Wobbuffet. She orders Wobbuffet to attack, but James reads Wobbuffet is patient, so it cannot attack. Chikorita uses Vine Whip, hitting Wobbuffet. Chikorita repeats her attack, but Jessie commands Counter, which Wobbuffet sends the attack back to Chikorita. Chikorita uses Razor Leaf, but the attack returns at her, due to Counter. Ash calls Chikorita back and sends Pikachu, who uses Thunderbolt. While Wobbuffet uses Counter, the attack prolongs and extends to Team Rocket, who blast off. Later, the heroes come back with the Poké Balls and give them back to the trainers. Benny comes with Lickitung, who licks him. He wants to thank the long red-haired lady with glasses before she leaves the town, hoping she'll take care of Wobbuffet. Benny shouts he'll take care of Lickitung and hopes Wobbuffet will be taken care as well, but will not forget it, while Snubbull continues to search for Team Rocket. At night, Team Rocket welcome Wobbuffet to the team and tells it to be patient, as they are stuck on a branch, making Jessie very annoyed.




Wobbuffet (Jessie's)


"I'll take it! I'll take it! I... Hey wait a minute. This situation seems strangely familiar. I once bought a Magikarp from this salesman on the St. Anne and he looked an awful lot like... AH! You're that same old charlatan who swindled me before!" - James
"I don't under-... Unless... It must've happened with the real machine. So now this Wobbuffet belongs to meeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee." - Jessie


  • The running of the Tauros event is based on the Running of the Bulls, an annual event that takes place in the real world city of Pamplona, Spain, upon which the town in this episode is named.
  • From this episode onwards, Kayzie Rogers is a regular as she provides the voice of Jessie's Wobbuffet until the XY series.
  • The "Who's that Pokémon?" in this episode is Wooper.