12 times that cross-dressing Team Rocket stole the show on Pokemon
All things Pokemon are enjoying a revival in 2016 – and the original animated series is no exception.
Originally airing in 1997, the Pokemon anime was notorious for under-the-radar gags – first and foremost the downright queerness of recurring villains Team Rocket.
Frequently wearing elaborate disguises in a bid to trick people into giving up their Pokemon, Jessie and James were no strangers to slipping into gender-bending disguises – with James’ penchant for dressing up becoming a recurring feature on the show.
We take a look at some of our favourite Team Rocket outfits below.
Rocket Aloha Form
Jessie and James bring some Hawaiian realness, disguising themselves with flowered necklaces, grass skirts and wigs.
Keeping it cooool
In one of the first classic episodes of the anime, Jessie and James disguise themselves as saleswomen in matching skirts.
Team Rocket’s reverse-wedding disguise is probably our favourite of the lot. Perfection.
Too hot for TV
‘Beauty and the Beach’ had the honour of being the first Pokemon episode to be banned in the US, thanks to James’ large fake breasts.
He stripped down to his swimwear and even taunted Misty with his inflatable boobs during a swimsuit competition. It aired in Japan without controversy.
Party for everybody
Team Rocket go full-on babushka in these outfits, dressing up as elderly egg-sellers in order to attempt to steal unborn egg Pokemon Togepi. Nil points.
Every little thing she does is magic
It’s not all about James! Jessie took on the guise of a male magician in order to distract the Pokemon gang, with James as her glamorous assistant.
Law & Order: Kanto
In a bid to steal a pack of Growlithe police dogs, the villains dress up as Pokemon police officer Officer Jenny.
Team Rocket came directly from the 1970s to deliver this look, as they tried to convince Ash and Misty they were musicians.
Banned from Strictly Come Dancing
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Flamenco meets ballet as the pair disguised themselves as dancers in order to pull a trick.
You shall not pass
Jessie gets her Gandalf on when the pair both disguise themselves as old men.
Walk walk fashion baby
When Pokemon sets an episode at a fashion salon, you know there’s going to be something good coming – and Team Rocket don’t let you down.
Koffing used Attract
Of course, Jessie and James aren’t the only members of Team Rocket who get to dress up. James dragged up his Koffing to help advertise the fashion salon.