| Best Wishes Abridged|
The scriptwriting sessions can be downloaded here.
- Ash: ThornBrain
- Delia: LillyLivers
- Professor Oak: ThornBrain
- Professor Araragi: LillyLivers
- Iris: LillyLivers
- Jessie: codeblackhayate
- James: ThornBrain
- Giovanni: xJerry64x
- Shooter: LordMoonstone
- Pikachu: Vorhias
- Mijumaru: ThornBrain
- Zekrom: ThornBrain
- Tsutaja: ThornBrain
- Mamepato: ThornBrain
- Pokedexes: ThornBrain
- Shikijika: Mugiwara Yoshi
- Kibago: ThornBrain
- Professor Araragi's assistant: Mugiwara Yoshi
- Giovanni's secretary: ThornBrain
- Meowth: Mugiwara Yoshi
- Minezumi: ThornBrain + Mugiwara Yoshi
- Nurse Joy: Mugiwara Yoshi
- Fuyuki: ThornBrain
- Cameo Ash's: MasterWGS + 1KidsEntertainment
Pokemon Season 1
- "Creeping Shadow"
- "I Got a Pokemon"
- "Kanto Trainer Battle"
- "Kanto Wild Pokemon Battle"
- "Setting Off"
- "Team Rocket Motto"
- "Team Rocket's Secret"
- "The Matter's Settled"
- "Mujou's Theme" - Bomberman Jetters OST
- Presidential campaign music on kazoo - ThornBrain
- Tsutaja's "vote for me" line and the kazoo music are repeated in a demonic, reverberated tone. As a result, Shooter nervously says that he's "leaning more towards the fire pig, now", which greatly annoys Mijumaru.
Unlike Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Abridged, which was an idea Yoshi had for several years, BWA was a spur-of-the-moment idea following the Japanese release of the Pokemon: Best Wishes season. Writing and planning began near the end of Sgt Frog Abridged - Episode 4's development. The script was completed on November 5th. Thorn's lines were recorded on November 8, while Yoshi's lines were recorded sporadically from November 7 to November 15. Lilly's lines were recorded between November 10 and November 14.
The last of the lines were collected and editing was finished at midnight, Thanksgiving, November 25.
Joke References and Explanations
- Numerous jabs are made at the Pokemon anime and its tropes:
- Ash fails constantly and seems to forget basic things he learned as a Pokemon trainer.
- Ash's now-brown irises are claimed by him to be new contact lenses. The sudden change disturbs Delia, like many fans who found the sudden coloring of his eyes to be strange.
- Later in the episode, Ash incorrectly sings Sparks' "Beat the Clock", and instead sings about looking at the sun through a telescope and burning his eye, possibly explaining why he had to get contacts.
- Meowth doesn't talk; he only says "meow".
- Delia supposedly being a single mother is referenced twice:
- When Ash angers Araragi by ignoring her, she furiously calls him "the one the spermicide forgot to kill".
- Oak jokingly calls Ash "son", to which a very upset Ash responds, "Don't joke about my dad!"
- Delia warns Ash not to talk to strangers "unless it is absolutely necessary". Because talking to strangers is a cornerstone of his journey, he responds "I think we'll be fine, then".
- Ash immediately assumes that Iris will be his new travel partner because she is "the first female trainer [he has] met". He claims this happens because he is "a bit of a slut".
- Team Rocket are still trying to capture Pikachu and failing. Their boss Giovanni even made a bet with his assistant that they would fail right at the start, and he laughs at them mentioning trying to capture Pikachu again.
- Ash thinks out loud as he watches Shikijika, though exaggerated to have him shouting his thoughts.
- The Pokedex says that Mamepato will "hand your ass to you" if Ash tries to fight it, which happens in the original show and often in the series.
- Iris apparently catches Chlamydia, which confuses Ash; Iris is supposedly Ash's age, roughly 10 years. She responds by playfully asking how old he is "again", a joke at Ash never getting older as the series progresses, despite the anime airing for over 15 years.
- Ash and Iris seem surprised and even impressed at Team Rocket attempting to capture their Pokemon.
- Ash also seems shocked and annoyed that Team Rocket attempt to escape in a balloon, which has been their infrequent trademark since season 1.
- Ash sends out his newly caught Mamepato to fight Team Rocket, but it immediately hits the ground weak, a joke on how Ash will send out a new Pokemon when he had to weaken it considerably to catch it.
- Mamepato weakly asks Ash, "Are you proud of me... master?", an additional joke at how a newly caught Pokemon seems to develop an immediate loyalty to its new trainer.
- The new Nurse Joy design is spoofed by the nurse herself; she describes herself as "slightly strange-looking".
- The writers play on both Ash's determination to succeed and his constant failures in the series; he is instead totally optimistic that his new journey will be a complete disaster. Pikachu seems to share this perverted optimism.
- His intro monologue directly acknowledges that Ash is doing the same thing he had been doing since the start, and that success is very unlikely.
- Upon leaving the plane, Ash is excited at the prospect of seeing how "this new journey falls apart", as is Pikachu.
- When Pikachu gets captured by Team Rocket, he mentions Ash's line and that it seems to be falling apart already. When he and Ash are zapped by Zekrom, he considers that attack to be the confirmation.
- Ash bets money that he is going to lose to Shooter, then later offers the opposite bet to Shooter.
- When Araragi introduces Ash, she introduces him as Shooter's "new failure of a rival". Ash proudly adds, "Four-time failure, motherfucker!" referencing his four previous losses in the regional tournaments.
- Araragi warns Ash not to waste the five Pokeballs that she gives to him to start his new journey. He assures her that he will only waste three-
- -which he promptly does as soon as he leaves: he mistakes a bush for a Pokemon (and apparently the fruit in the bush), and proceeds to throw two Pokeballs at the unsuspecting Iris' head. After the second ball, she angrily jumps out and confronts him; he responds by throwing the third Pokeball directly into her face.
- Ash closes the video by inviting everyone "on another disappointing adventure".
- Pikachu's supposed strength, high-level and unstoppability is mentioned frequently, mostly to foreshadow his and Ash's eventual failures.
- After Ash's intro monologue, Pikachu asks Ash not to forget everything he learned as a trainer "again".
- Araragi says that Pikachu is "so massively overpowered that it shouldn't have trouble fighting anything. Ever."
- Although Ash offers $20 to Shooter if he can beat him, he still hypes Pikachu as over-leveled and overpowered.
- Ash's intelligence is very dubious:
- He falls down the stairs in an attempt to show his mom the effectiveness of his new contact lenses.
- He (and Pikachu) are astonished at the plane's window.
- He also immediately forgets the window is there as soon as he turns away.
- At awkward, silent moments, he will simply shout an upbeat "Yeah!", even when Pikachu's face slides off.
- Though he can apparently sense Zekrom's presence, he mistakenly thinks that it was the fish Pokemon.
- When Team Rocket grab Pikachu and say "Guess who?", Ash thinks they are actually playing a game of Guess Who.
- He seems completely unaware that Skittles are still a popular candy.
- He thinks that Pikachu's ECG is actually their win/lose ratio. When it beeps, he thinks it is a representation of a loss, and when it flatlines he thinks he has immediately improved.
- Araragi skips over the fire pig Pokemon, but Ash seems genuinely interested in learning about it.
- When Shooter's beeper-Pokedex explodes, Ash thinks that it exploded because Shooter didn't catch them fast enough.
- Ash bets Shooter $20 if he can beat Pikachu, though Ash previously bet $20 that he was going to lose to Shooter. This can either be interpreted as stupidity, or that Ash was clever enough to know how not to lose any money no matter what, especially considering he runs off after Shooter beats him, claiming to not have the money.
- Ash refers to him getting an idea to help Pikachu as his "brain working".
- Delia directly asks Ash if he is retarded when he has Pikachu attack him. Ash, delirious from being tackled, interprets this as Delia being proud of him.
- Ash thinks that a bush, as well as the bush's fruit, is a new breed of Pokemon. When the Pokedex tells Ash otherwise, he ignores it and proceeds to throw Pokeballs at Iris.
- Ash thinks out loud as he watches Shikijika, causing them to notice him and run away.
- Professor Araragi is most notable for being the first female Pokemon professor, something which was old news by the time Best Wishes Abridged was being written. As such, the team both references and avoids directly mentioning this by having Araragi's most notable feature instead be that she wears sneakers.
- Professor Oak mentions this when Araragi first appears. Everyone seems to be impressed by this.
- As a disguised sexism joke, Ash doesn't listen to Araragi, but he will listen to Oak because he wears brown shoes. Thorn finds generic sexism jokes particularly unfunny.
- When Ash leaves to begin his journey, sneakers continue to be used as a subtle substitute for women, once being used as a subtle joke at sexist men apparently being straight.
- The only character to directly mention Araragi's sex is Zekrom, who calls her "the hot broad".
- Araragi appears to have anger issues and/or be bipolar. Whenever Ash makes her angry, her eyes shrink and her tone of voice turns violent.
- Zekrom makes casual smalltalk in both of its appearances. When its friendliness is rejected, it zaps Ash and Pikachu.
- Shooter's interest in photography and taking pictures of mundane things is exaggerated:
- He apparently has numerous photo albums of pointless subjects, including a "ceiling scrapbook" and a "staring contest album for when [he is] bored".
- He makes photography puns, one of which he uses to weakly flirt with Professor Araragi.
- He actually makes a threefer with the line "Looks like he just ran out of film, OH SNAP", with the "film" and "oh snap" parts being camera puns, while the "ran out of" part instead references Ash running away. The pun about Ash running away was not intentional, but was pointed out by TheFourteenthNumber in the YouTube comments.
- After Shooter is no longer in the episode, two other characters attempt to make puns, with completely incoherent results:
- After Ash leaves, Professor Oak remarks, "It looks like I'm about to...piss my pants", which seems to catch Professor Araragi off-guard.
- When Team Rocket capture Pikachu and Kibago, Jessie says, "Looks like somebody just got served...", then she and James finish it with, "Pizza!".
- Jessie also mangles the trademark "blasting off again" line by instead saying "Looks like Team Rocket just got blown".
- Mijumaru is apparently horrified that Shooter did not pick it, so it desperately wants Ash to make it his Pokemon.
- When Mijumaru first appears, Ash comments that he would like it "to just follow [him] around all day". Mijumaru laughs off his statement, directly foreshadowing the rest of the episode.
- The second time Zekrom attacks, Mijumaru attempts to take advantage of Ash's deliriousness as if he had amnesia by yelling, "Your name is Ash Ketchum, you’re a Pokemon trainer, and you’re going to pick me NOW NOW NOW!".
- Mijumaru is already in the area when Team Rocket captures Pikachu and Kibago. Despite rescuing them, Ash apparently forgets about Mijumaru, who is then seen outside of the Pokemon Center yelling "ONE DAY, ASH KETCHUM! ONE DAY!"
- Professor Oak shouts this line at the very beginning of the episode, and then later comments "for future reference", due to it literally being a reference to the future. Ash forgets about it, just like Professor Oak had hoped wouldn't happen.
- In the Post-Credits, Mijumaru is greatly annoyed that Shooter prefers the fire pig as a replacement for the now-demonic Tsutaja.
- A few references are made to the Japanese version and the English translation(s) of the original episodes:
- Giovanni's Japanese name is "Sakaki". This is referenced by having him call his assistant the name.
- Jessie refers to Zekrom as "the Pokemon the locals call 'legendary'", which was a direct line from a subtitled version of the episode. Giovanni interprets this as the Pokemon literally being named "Legendary".
- The Pokedex says "Shikijika" as "Chikachikahhh", a play on the name's similarity to the iconic vocalization from Ferris Bueller's Day Off.
Recurring Jokes and References to TheMidnightFrogs' Videos and Outside Projects
- Before Ash falls down the stairs, he makes the geeky laugh that Keroro makes in Sgt Frog Abridged - Episode 4, which is in itself a reference to a Guitar Hero 3 Retsupurae by Diabetus.
- James references the cave scene from Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Abridged when he says, "Okay guys, we have to be really quiet...", on the plane.
- When Ash, Pikachu, Delia and Professor Oak leave the plane, Delia's mouth is hanging open, and she can be heard droning "nurrrrrrr...", a recurring joke in TheMidnightFrogs' abridging videos.
- When Mijumaru is shown watching Ash and Shooter battle, it too is droning "nurrrrrrrr...".
- Ash plays Guess Who? with Team Rocket, and guesses that Charmander is the mystery person. PMDA's Charmander then sticks his head out from offscreen and yells "How did you know?!"
- When Pikachu's face falls off after Zekrom's first attack, his seemingly inflated head is actually a still-frame of him turning to face Ash. This is the second time the team have found an odd-looking character-turning frame and incorporated it into the video, the first being Li'l Keroro's shocked expression in SFA4.
- As with previous SFA episodes, Thorn hides the cover of one of his favorite albums in the video. In this case, he hides Elvis Costello's debut album My Aim is True on the picture behind Araragi and her assistant. Thorn at the time considered it possibly tied with Costello's follow-up This Year's Model as his all-time favorite album.
- Fuyuki from Sgt Frog Abridged appears and yells out "HE WENT WITH THE SNAKE?!", calling back to his previous crazy moments in SFA and PMDA. The image of him used here was also used in his PMDA appearance.
- PMDA is referenced again when Shooter's beeper-Pokedex begins cycling through Pokemon: it gets stuck on Charmander, then it goes directly to Squirtle as it explodes.
- When Pikachu attacks Mamepato, he yells out "Suck my thundershock, ya JERK!" This is a reference to a since-deleted Retsupurae that Thorn and Yoshi made of a Pokemon Mystery Dungeon Let's Play. The Let's Player, playing as Pikachu, would constantly say "suck my thundershock" and awkwardly call an enemy "jerk".
- Mijumaru references the joke again at the end of the video, though the line is altered to "suck my shell" and is considerably more threatening.
- When Team Rocket capture Pikachu and Kibago, Ash says "It's Team Rokketto, neeeeeeee!", in a direct reference to Yoshi and Thorn's satire video "Really Shit Drawings of a Japanese Pokemon Thing by MYTB ROCK ON HOMIES".
- Tsutaja, due to being a snake Pokemon and generally "cool" character, is played with a Solid Snake voice. As such, he leans in from the side when Team Rocket put Pikachu and Kibago into a box and says "you're screwed", a'la Solid Snake's relation to cardboard boxes and Snake's appearances in Sgt Frog Abridged.
- Ash apparently names Mamepato "Devin" when he captures it. Pigeons being named Devin is an inside joke that is about as old as TheMidnightFrogs team itself. It's been used by Thorn in a surreal Christmas video of his, and he had recently made a surreal humor video about a Pigeon named Devin.
Other Jokes and References
- When Araragi is displaying the three starter Pokemon, Tsutaja has a brief campaign to be chosen: it proudly says "Vote for me!", and a kazoo can be heard playing presidential campaign music.
- When Ash bends over to look at Mijumaru, his spine makes a loud crack.
- MasterWGS and 1KidsEntertainment, both abridgers of the Pokemon anime (Pokemon The Abridged Series and Pokemon The 'Bridged Series respectively), make brief simultaneous cameos as their versions of the season 1 Ash.
- When Professor Araragi begins talking about Pikachu losing his electricity again, Ash ignores her and starts incorrectly singing Sparks' "Beat the Clock" to himself.
- Araragi's faded-out dialogue is actually the lyrics to Devo's "Whip It". The line "Go forward, get straight" is audible when Ash's singing is over.
- Ash's response to Delia's warning not to talk to strangers, "I think we'll be fine, then", is inspired by a similar line and situation from The Jeff Lewis 5-Minute Comedy Hour Episode 3.
- When Ash and Iris sit down to talk, Pikachu mutters "I've got 99 problems, and one of them is Ash", a reference to the hip-hop song "99 Problems" by Jay-Z. Neither Yoshi or Thorn have actually heard the song.
- When Pikachu spots Shikijika, Ash calls it "the Pokemon we saw in the scene that was cut out", a meta reference to the team's shortening of the driving scene earlier in the episode.
- Shikijika threateningly yells out, "That's right! Run from me!", while instead running away itself.
- After the Minezumi cause Ash to spin and become dizzy, he briefly says the chorus to "Thriller" by Michael Jackson, which was inspired by his awkward looking movements. Ash also incorrectly says "Thriller day" instead of "Thriller night".
- Iris proudly proclaiming that she caught Chlamydia was inspired by British improv show Mock the Week, wherein Chlamydia is frequently used in jokes.
- Jessie makes a hand-in-arm gesture that looks similar to the "up yours" sign. Though this was likely not the original intention, it gives the impression that Jessie is insulting Ash and Iris along with gloating to them.
- The "Drive-by's are bad" song that Pikachu, Mamepato and Kibago sing at the end of the video comes from the George Lopez Show.
- Pikachu's agonized "Aaagh" afterward was actually a joke take Vorhias did for Pikachu's earlier shout of surprise when Team Rocket grabs him and Kibago.
The video was received very positively by TheMidnightFrog's subscribers and by abridgers alike. As of November 27, two days after the video was uploaded, it had 72 "Likes" and 0 "Dislikes", more than either Sgt Frog Abridged Episode 2R, Episode 3, or Episode 4. It reached 100 "likes" on December 20. The team also saw a jump in their subscriber count: 30 subscribers in 40-hours, the fastest they had gained subscribers in that short of a time period. Codeblackhayate's portrayal of Jessie was most singled out for praise.
As of March 20, the video was tied with Sgt Frog Abridged - Episode 1R at 156 "likes". This was the last number of "likes" the video gathered before the team took the video down.
Thorn and Yoshi became dissatisfied with the video over time. Thorn considers it part of their "self-aware videos": videos where the writing is so self-aware that it becomes annoying and lazy, which also include SFA8 and SFA9.
- Best Wishes Abridged has Yoshi's fewest voice acting contributions for a full MidnightFrogs parody, while Thorn's and Lilly's voice-acting were the most prominent. It also featured the most guest voice actors in a MidnightFrogs video to date.
- The video was the team's longest Abridging video until Sgt Frog Abridged - Episode 18, clocking in at 13:26.
- Nowacking was originally in-line to voice Jessie, but numerous problems in her private life kept recording from happening. Codeblackhayate provided lines for Jessie at the last minute - she is thanked for her quick help in the credits, and the experience lead Thorn to ask her to become Angol Mois for SFA5 the next month after Mois's original voice actor was dropped.
- A commentary of the video was uploaded on March 30, 2012.
The YouTube video was repeatedly taken down by Shopro, which is believed to be the result of a glitch with the copyright bot that was also affecting other Pokemon abridgers at the time. The team decided in March 2011 to counter it one last time to remove the strike, but then they would remove the video from YouTube. BWA was only available on the team's now-deleted Blip channel afterward until Thorn reuploaded it to his archive channel in June 2013, long after the bot glitch had been fixed and presumably after a change in copyright rules.