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Moving Pictures (こおったヒマナッツのなぞ!! Puzzle of the Frozen Sunkern!!) is the 30th episode of Pokémon: Johto League Champions.


Ash, Misty and Brock are reunited with their friend, Todd Snap, who seeks to take a picture of an Articuno. Suddenly, a meteor falls down, revealing it to be a frozen Sunkern. They go to a lodge with an old lady, who tells her sad tale. However, it is a fraud, since the lover that supposedly passed away is actually alive. Nevertheless, they need to take their picture for their anniversary, so how will Todd take the picture without Sunflora that memorized this couple's days?

Episode plot

As the heroes wander and see the dark sky, they hear someone taking camera photos. They see Todd Snap, so Ash and Pikachu go to greet him. They fall down and Todd takes their pictures, saying they need to see their expressions. Ash remembers when they were headed for Cinnabar Island, Todd went to take pictures of wild Pokémon. Todd shows his pictures, which are mostly those that are Grass Pokémon. Todd's wish is to take a picture of an Articuno. Todd tells he had a report from a village the people saw an Articuno. The heroes decide to join Todd to see Articuno. Suddenly, it begins to snow and the heroes see a star. Todd goes to take a photo of it, but Ash pushes him away, as that was a meteor that fell down. The heroes are surprised that meteor is a frozen Sunkern. In any case, they run to a lodge to defrost it. Team Rocket saw this and plan to capture Pikachu and Sunkern.

The heroes come to a lodge and ask an old lady to defrost Sunkern. Inside, she comes with hot water. Brock places Sunkern and the old lady pours hot water. Sunkern is defrosted and likes the warm bath, enough to sing. The heroes introduce themselves to the old lady named Sophia. Sophia tells that this is the Sunflora Lodge. She tells she can recite a tale why it is named, but knows young people wouldn't be interested. Still, she decides to tell the tale, thinking it will be exciting. The heroes know they will be stuck for eternity, but decide to hear the tale anyway. Sophia tells that 50 years ago, her lover, Marcello, went to work in another town. Months passed and she learned Marcello got into a terrible accident. She waited and received a letter. Marcello wished happiness if she was married, but if she was not and wanted him, she needed to put a Sunflora in front of the lodge and he'd know. Sophia asked for trainers if they had Sunflora. She managed to get them and Marcello saw her. Soon they married, but he also passed away too soon. She shows them a picture of Marcello, Sunflora and her.

The heroes, even Team Rocket, are touched by this story. Meowth thinks if the lady knew Spanish, she'd make a telenovela out of that story. Ash thinks Sophia misses her husband, but an old man smiles and tells she does not miss as much as he thinks. He introduces himself as Marcello and tells Sophia likes to put herself and him into the tales she hears. Todd sees the picture with Sunflora, so Sophia tells that is real and this time of year Sunflora come to a slope, so she and Marcello had their picture taken with them. The heroes see it is their anniversary, so Todd thinks they need to take their picture. Marcello reports there are no Sunflora, since it is cold this time of year, so they shouldn't take the picture. Todd believes they should anyway, so they all go to the slope. Brock also brings Sunkern, thinking it will discover what happened to Sunflora. Before going, Todd takes their picture. Meanwhile, Team Rocket plan to capture Pikachu, since they'll be occupied on investigating where Sunflora went.

The heroes come to the slope and see it is deserted and cold. Suddenly, it begins to snow, so Sophia remembers Marcello saved her when they were crossing a bridge in winter, as she almost fell down. The heroes are touched, but Brock wonders how come they now did not cross the bridge. Marcello and Sophia admit they saw that tale on reality show. Todd notices it begins to snow heavier. Suddenly, they see Team Rocket, who have the machine activated to make snow. Todd is surprised they follow Ash, Misty and Brock. Wobbuffet comes out and Todd takes picture of him, but Jessie asks if he is going to take a horror picture. In any case, Meowth presses a button, redirecting the snow to blow on the heroes. Sophia tells Marcello if he knows the tale when she fell in the blizzard and he picked him up. Misty knows that is a fake story, but Marcello asks if she does want to hear the ending. Sophia adds that the people were found in two blocks of ice. Misty just replies they are being attacked right now. Soon, the heroes are covered in snow.

Meowth turns the machine down, so the heroes, Marcello and Sophia emerge. Pikachu goes to electrocute Team Rocket, but he is too cold. Ash sends Bulbasaur to use Solar Beam, but gets covered with snow. Jessie sends Arbok, who wraps Pikachu and brings him to Team Rocket. Bulbasaur goes to help, but is stuck. Sunkern comes out of Brock's reach and uses Sunny Day, causing light to appear from the sky. This causes snow to melt, allowing the heroes to be freed. Bulbasaur uses Solar Beam, destroying the snow machine. After Pikachu breaks free, Team Rocket leave the heroes alone, as they fly in their balloon. Nevertheless, Pikachu's Thunderbolt blasts them off. The heroes thank Sunkern, so Todd takes a picture of it. Sophia and Marcello are sad there are no Sunflora to take picture with, but agree to take picture with Sunkern. Brock has an idea and asks Ash to use the Sun Stone. Ash remembers he won it at the Bug-Catching Contest, so he places the Sun Stone near Sunkern, allowing it to evolve into Sunflora.

Sophia does not want competition, since Sunflora are prettier than her. Suddenly, all the Sunflora come, making Marcello and Sophia glad about it. Todd takes the picture of them and spots a glowing object. He wonders if it was an Articuno, but Brock thinks it is possible, since it was cold. Todd feels he will take a picture of it.






  • Letter


"Then we came to the perfect place." - Ash
"We sure did. Sunkern are the pre-evolved form of Sunflora, right?" - Brock
"That's right. And the reason we call this the Sunflora Lodge is... Oh well. That's a very long, complicated story and I'm sure you young people wouldn't be interested in listening to an old lady reminisce. (Snacks are set up) Of course it is rather interesting and I could tell you if you insist." - Sophia
"We're stuck now." - Todd
"She's gettin' ready to tell her whole life story." - Ash
"We'll be here forever." - Misty
"Wonder if she has any string cheese." - Brock
"If you can't trust a little old lady, who CAN you trust?" - Ash


  • This was the final episode to use the pan-out display with "To be Continued..." after it. From the next episode on they would have "To Be Continued..." in the picture itself.
  • Even though it didn't actually happen, this episode contains a rare mention of human death on the series, and even more unusual, a religious symbol in the form a cross-shaped headstone.
  • The title is the name of an album by Rush.
  • "Who's that Pokémon?": Sunkern (JP) Pineco (US).