Stairway to Devon (デボンコーポレーション！アクア団の影！！ Devon Corporation! Shadow of Team Aqua!) is the 17th episode of Pokémon: Advanced.
After winning the Stone Badge from Roxanne, Ash and co. head out to the next gym, located on Dewford Island. However, Max spills a drink on May's PokéNav and rather than suffer her wrath, Max tries to find a quick solution. He sees an old man demonstrating new inventions but before he can go further, a younger man picks him up in a limo. Who is this old man, and can he help Max fix the PokéNav before May finds out it's broken?
Ash looks his new badge, but asks Max where the next Gym is. Max looks on his PokéNav, learning it is on Dewford Island. May and Brock read brochures about Rustboro City, seeing the place has many shops. Despite Ash's wanting to go to the island, May and Brock decide it would be better to stay for a while in Rustboro City, since it takes two hours for the ship to sail off. Max is searching on PokéNav, but spills his drink over it, destroying the device. Max nervously runs off, making Ash, May and Brock wonder what's up with him. Max walks around town, looking someone to repair the device. He finds a man advertising some products. One of them is a can opener, but when the device opens the can, it sprays the liquid on him, so the audience disperses. The inventor turns on Max, who introduces himself. Max explains his problem, to which the inventor suggests going to Devon Corporation, a company that makes a lot of inventions, even one that makes Pokémon.
Suddenly, another man steps out of car and starts running to the inventor. The inventor tells Max the corporation is held in the biggest building of the city before he runs off. The man, who chased the inventor, named Kennedy, contacts the others where the inventor went off to. Elsewhere, Ash contacts Professor Oak, showing he got his first Hoenn Gym Badge and admits Pikachu learned Iron Tail attack. Professor Oak is happy and congratulates the two on their accomplishments, then logs out. Brock and May have come from shopping, although May's a bit sick, since she has been shopping too much. Brock and Ash see they may miss the boat to Dewford Island. This gets May back on her feet, since she has more shopping to do, feeling she has not enough swimsuits to show off on the island. Max comes to the Devon Corporation Headquarters. Team Rocket arrives as well, hoping to steal some of the inventions and give it to the boss for a promotion. Max talks to the receptionist about repairing, but she replies they don't do repairs. Max walks away, while Officer Jenny meets up with the inventor and the man, stating she heard talk of someone infiltrating the Devon Corporation.
The inventor sneaks up on Max and takes him inside the headquarters. The inventor examines the PokéNav, seeing it has been a drink has been spilled onto it. The inventor goes in a room, admitting Kennedy is still following him around and gives his scientists the PokéNav for repairs. The scientists accept the president's job, surprising Max the inventor is a president. The scientists tell Kennedy, the president's assistant, sometimes troubles the president with certain things. The president admits he sometimes get out of the office to find some inspiration, as he guides Max on a tour through the headquarters. He claims kids are an inspiration for his inventions, thinking Max would still be running on the streets, would the president not have found him. Max confesses he wants to prove himself he is no kid, but could not face May when the PokéNav broke. The president admits he feels the same. The president shows Max the machines the company has been developing: a Pokémon dream projector, Pokémon speaker and a Pokémon translator, although none have been finished. He stops for a while, showing Max the Pokémon producing machine. The machine analyzes a fossil and produces the extinct Pokémon from the fossil.
Max admits his wish is to be a Gym Leader when he grows up. Max asks if he should bring his friends inside, to which the president agrees. However, Kennedy arrives to warn the president of the appointments he has to be a part of. The president introduces Kennedy to Max, who nearly thought Kennedy wanted to kidnap the president. Per the president's request, Kennedy goes off to find Ash, May and Brock and bring them to the headquarters. Outside, Team Rocket thinks of how to bypass the security, so they disguise themselves as scientists. A person grabs some test tubes from Pokémon producing machine. While explaining to Max how a machine works, the president looks to the person, who left the room. Max and the president go to check upon him, as the president knows that is not his employee. Ash, May and Brock arrive to the Devon Corporation, where Kennedy explains Max has been chosen to go through a tour of the headquarters. Kennedy takes them inside the headquarters, while Team Rocket attempts to pass by. Officer Jenny stops them, demanding them to show their ID-s.
The president and Max see the man has gone off to the firehazard stairs. While going through the halls, Kennedy thinks the president chose Max to guide through the facility, since Max reminds the president of his son, Steven, who is a skilled trainer. Ash thinks he could face against Steven someday, to which Kennedy has no doubt. They arrive to the testing room, where the scientists report two capsules have been stolen. Max and the president follow the guy, but Max falls onto the stairs, alerting the man. The man quickly climbs the stairs, running away. Max apologizes for blowing the cover, but the president is certain that guy certainly does not belong in here. The president contacts Kennedy, requiring assistance to track down the thief. This worries May a lot, so Kennedy shows them a quick way to get to the top. Jessie and James try to get out of situation with Officer Jenny, claiming Meowth ate their cards. A speaker is saying that the thief is wearing glasses and a lab coat. Team Rocket removes the disguise and are soon chased down by Officer Jenny.
As they are chasing down the suspect, the president claims Max would be a great trainer one day, since trainers grow up through adventures. The man arrives to the top, but is intercepted by May, Ash and Brock. Seeing he is surrounded, the man sends his Crawdaunt. Pikachu uses Quick Attack, hitting Crawdaunt, who retaliates with Crabhammer. Team Rocket appears as well, but see something is wrong. Crawdaunt uses Bubble Beam, attacking everyone. The man calls Crawdaunt back and tries to escape, using a device. Team Rocket grabs onto him, and Meowth searches into his pockets. Meowth finds the test tubes, but the rocket is falling down, due to too much capacity. The tubes fall down, but Max catches all of them. Pikachu uses Thunderbolt, but it hits only Team Rocket, blasting them off, while the man escapes away. Everyone approaches Max, who saved the tubes. The heroes think who was the man, but Jenny implicates he might be a member of Team Aqua. Jenny explains in Hoenn, there are two criminal organizations, Team Aqua and Team Magma.
Later on, the police found that man had escaped, as his lab coat and the rocket were thrown away. In a restaurant, the president praises the heroes, but Ash thinks Max deserves more credit. Seeing these children are adventurers, the president thinks of his son, Steven, who is at Dewford Island and may even help them, should they run into trouble. May asks for her PokéNav, making Max nervous. Luckily the president gives Max the PokéNav, under the table, making Pikachu curious. Max gives May the PokéNav and thanks the president.
- "Come on, Ash, cool it. The Gym isn't going anywhere." - May
- Featured Pokémon: Slugma
- The name of the episode is a parody on the song Stairway to Heaven.
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