A Team-on-Team Tussle! (クリスタル争奪戦！ロケット団対スカル団！！, The Fight Over the Crystal! Team Rocket Against Team Skull!!) is the 25th episode of Pokémon the Series: Sun & Moon.
Ash and Kiawe prepare their Z-Rings, as Kukui had them demonstrate the Z-Moves for today's class. Team Rocket observes this, wondering what are they talking about. Ash and Kiawe make poses, as their Pikachu and Turtonator execute Gigavolt Havoc and Inferno Overdrive. The attacks destroy an obstacle, impressing Lana, Mallow, Lillie, Sophocles, Kukui and Rotom. Team Rocket is shocked, but grin to each other, having an idea. At their base, James explains that the Z-Moves are used through Z-Crystals, activated from Z-Rings when one is at their fullest power. He also learned one can obtain them from certain mines found in Alola. Meowth imagines when he'd make a pose, he'd blast off the twerp and his Pikachu away. Jessie and James clap, and the latter shows a detector for Z-Crystals. Meowth recalls they bought this over the Internet, but James confirms it works. He activates it, and the detector points to a direction, near their base, making Meowth want to go after the Crystal immediately.
At the school, Kukui asks everyone if they saw a Z-Crystal other than Ash and Kiawe's. Sophocles mentions his neighbor had one. Thus, Kukui shows *all* of the Z-Crystals. Everyone is amazed, though Kukui states these are all fake. Kukui also asks if they know which type they correspond. The class does not know, so Rotom states all of them in the order, impressing everyone. Team Rocket, however, continues walking through a forest. James' detector starts reacting, as the trio spots a black crystal in a rock. James explains that's the Darkinium Z. As they go after the crystal, they find the Alola Rattata and Raticate, including a giant Raticate. Team Rocket is terrified, as the giant Raticate executes an attack, splitting James' detector in two. Jessie and Meowth run off, as does James, avoiding getting attacked. Three Team Skull grunts walk through the forest, as the blue-haired grunt trusts his intuition about the cake shop's location they want to go to. The other two complain, as they are hungry, but the blue-haired grunt claims they simply need to follow him. Hearing something, the grunts continue on and fall down, as Team Rocket leaps across them.
Suddenly, the three grunts face the giant Raticate. The grunts are terrified, too, and jump into a bush, avoiding Raticate's Hyper Beam. The brown-haired grunt thinks this is the Raticate's leader, while the pink-haired grunt proposes catching it, thinking they would be the strongest ones in the town. The blue-haired grunt agrees, thinking of themselves being very smart. Kukui, however, explains that Pokémon can use different Z-Moves, based on the moves they already know of; like Pikachu, who can use Quick Attack, and can use the power from Normalium-Z. Rotom explains to Ash if he had the Steelium-Z, he'd have Pikachu use the Steel Z-Move, as Pikachu knows the Steel-type move Iron Tail. Ash is amazed and would be pleased if Pikachu could do that, whom Togedemaru wants to hug. Lana wonders what about Water-type Z-Moves. Team Rocket see the Raticate eating the berries. James thinks they can climb at the back of the mountain to get the Crystal. The Team Skull grunts observe the Raticate. They also find the Darkinium Z in the rock. The blue-haired grunt demands they need the crystal more than the Raticate. The brown-haired grunt recalls he did say he hated the Z-Moves, but the blue-haired one doesn't want to "speak of past things". The other two are convinced their "brother" is so smart.
Team Rocket and Team Skull sneak behind the mountain, while Raticate sniffs their presence. The two teams meet up with each other, and Team Rocket chants their motto. The Team Skull grunts claim that's old-fashioned, making Jessie annoyed by them. The pink-haired grunt gets Meowth and hugs him, thinking how cute is a talking Meowth. Jessie grabs Meowth back, while the blue-haired grunt demands to know where are they from. Jessie mentions Kanto, making the grunts wonder where that is, bewildering Meowth for their lack of knowledge. Suddenly, they are all spotted by the Raticate and Rattata, who descend down and attack them. The two teams fall down, and the giant Raticate slams them away by its tail, blasting them all off. Meanwhile, the class tries out the poses Kukui showed them, though Kiawe reminds Ash he made a pose for a move that doesn't even exist.
After falling down, the teams face each other, seeing they all are after the Z-Crystal. Team Skull grunts claim everything in Alola belongs to them, and the pink-haired grunt takes Meowth, still being charmed by its cuteness. Jessie takes Meowth back, and the two teams see they cannot trust the other one. The Team Skull grunts decide to get Team Rocket as bait for the Raticate, and the blue-haired grunt promises to get the talking Meowth for the pink-haired grunt. Team Rocket grins at Team Skull, and the two teams decide whoever doesn't get the crystal must obey the other team. Team Rocket accepts this, while the pink-haired grunt claims Meowth will be her own. The two teams observe how the Raticate are feeding themselves. James, who got poisoned by Mareanie on top of his head, states the Raticate must be distracted first. The Team Skull grunts claim Team Rocket should distract them, and go away. Meowth, however, shows the food trap and applies the scent he got from the Internet. The scent, however, smells badly, but it cures James' poisoning.
The Rattata and Raticate, except the giant one, enter the cage and eat the food. Meowth closes the cage, which the Raticate start biting. As the Team Rocket goes to confront the giant Raticate, the Team Skull grunts are impressed by their approach. The brown-haired and pink-haired grunt send Garbodor and Zubat and run off, while the blue-haired grunt stays behind and sends Salandit. The giant Raticate is suddenly attacked, as James had Mareanie use Spike Cannon. However, the Raticate is unhurt, glowing with a strange aura, and leaps down to Team Rocket, scaring them. The Raticate slams Team Rocket away with its tail, while the two grunts have their Zubat use Supersonic and Garbodor to fire Venoshock. The giant Raticate, however, resists the attacks and topples them away. Team Rocket notes how the grunts aren't even good as bait, while Meowth points out the blue-haired grunt with Salandit is at the top of the rock, close to obtaining the Darkinium-Z.
Jessie sends Mimikyu, who, along with Meowth and Mareanie, face the giant Raticate, as Jessie and James go after the Z-Crystal. The two face the blue-haired grunt, who refuses to hand over the crystal to "outsiders". The Salandit tries to get the crystal out, as Jessie and James start climbing. Mimikyu fires Shadow Ball on the giant Raticate, who slams it away with its tail. Meowth is shocked Mimikyu was defeated, while Mareanie uses Spike Cannon. Raticate fires Hyper Beam, stopping the attack, then uses Hyper Fang to blow Mareanie and Meowth away to the two Team Skull grunts. Jessie and James continue climbing, but hearing Meowth was wounded, they go back. The blue-haired grunt laughs, and tries to get out the Z-Crystal out of the rock. Jessie gets Meowth out of the pink-haired grunt's hands, informing them their third grunt was using them to get the Z-Crystal. The grunts are shocked, but pleased that their "brother" was so smart that the strategy worked. Jessie's Mimikyu reappears, and slams the giant Raticate with Wood Hammer, followed up with Play Rough. The giant Raticate is defeated, impressing everyone, even Meowth thanks it for winning the battle.
Team Rocket and the two grunts go to the rock, where the grunt is unable to get the Z-Crystal out of it. The Rattata and Raticate reappear to the blue-haired grunt and fire Hyper Fang, blowing the grunt away. The crystal falls on Meowth, who gladly picks it up. Jessie and James are amazed, and remind the Team Skull grunts they are now the slaves. The grunts are unamused, and the pink-haired grunt hates Meowth. Suddenly, they try to sneak away, while Team Rocket gloats in the victory. However, Bewear picks them up and drags them away. After the school is over, the class bids each other farewell. Lana and Ash start practicing for the Z-Moves, though the latter is corrected by Rotom how the Steel-type Z-Move would be used. Later, Meowth, who wears the band with the Darkinium Z, tries to use its power. However, nothing happens, as James suspects Meowth made the wrong pose, who claims the band is just badly made. James recalls the Z-Ring was just an ornament, while Jessie suspects they simply lack the darkness to use the Darkinium Z. Meowth wants to prove that, and the trio continues making poses, while Bewear is napping.
Later, the Rattata and Raticate go to Team Rocket's cave. However, seeing Bewear, who is staring at them, they immediately flee.
- Buginium Z (replica)
- Flyinium Z (replica)
- Groundium Z (replica)
- Poisonium Z (replica)
- Rockium Z (replica)
- Ghostium Z (replica)
- Steelium Z (replica)
- Waterium Z (replica)
- Fairium Z (replica)
- Darkinium Z
- Dragonium Z (replica)
- Psychium Z (replica)
- Icium Z (replica)
- Grassium Z (replica)
- "Who's that Pokémon?:" Garbodor (JA), Alolan Raticate (EN)
- The Poké Problem segment hosted by James asks what Totem Pokémon will appear in today's episode. The correct answer is the red answer, Alolan Raticate. The other answers are Gumshoos (blue), Toucannon (green), and Bewear (yellow).
- Rotom sings a part of Pose while listing the types of each Z-Crystal replica presented by Professor Kukui.
- Pikachu breaks the fourth wall when he looks at Kiawe's bubble when Kiawe comments that the pose Ash is doing is not an actual pose.
- Meowth tries to perform Iyami's "Shesh" pose from Osomatsu-kun near the end of the episode.
- Tupp and Rapp read the Who's That Pokémon? segment in the dub.
- This episode's title card on the next episode preview segment from the previous episode says クリスタル争奪戦！！ The Fight Over the Crystal!! in the first part of the title, having an extra exclamation mark that is not in the episode's Japanese title
- The Japanese texts depicting Gigavolt Havoc and Inferno Overdrive's names are edited out in the dub.
- In the Japanese version, Rotom sings out the names of the Z-Crystals, while in the English dub, it just recites them.
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