This episode was a little awkward to write, to say the least. As much as I like having old members of the cast appearing in Cosmic Quest, normally they’re characters who have had all their development and story finished, meaning I can do just about anything I want with them. The problem with bringing in the cast of Alola, is that who knows what might happen between where the show currently is and when it ends. There are some assumptions I was able to make that were safe, such as assuming that by the end of Alola, Lillie will have overcome her fear of Pokémon, and become a full-fledged trainer, but pretty much anything else I had to be very careful of. I almost didn’t bring back the cast of Alola at all due to this, but I decided it was too good of an opportunity to pass up. However, one character I had to leave out due to uncertainties was the Rotomdex. Obviously there has to be some excuse at the end of Alola for why Rotomdex doesn’t continue to travel with Ash, and since I have no clue what that excuse may be, I had to, sadly, leave Rotomdex out of the episode. The other uncertainty was the arc that was running in the Japanese show at the time. Obviously an arc revolving around Solgaleo, Lunala, and Ultra Space is going to have an impact on my Ultra Beast-focused episode, but as I don’t watch the Japanese version, I had no way of knowing what was going on, so I just tried to keep things as ambiguous as possible. If any discontinuities do come up, I’ll make a post addressing them.
Speaking of discontinuities, this episode was my chance to fix two that had popped up. First was the mystery of Ash/Kukui’s Rockroff. In my original Sun and Moon special, Kukui had a Rockruff, which Ash specifically said was one that lived with Kukui. Of course, at this point in time I had no idea that this very same Rockruff was going to be captured by Ash and then later evolve, causing a major continuity issue with it appearing as a Rockruff in my series. To fix this, this new episode retconned it so that this was a completely separate Rockruff, one that was there at Kukui’s house, but apparently just never seen on-screen. The other retcon I had to make was with Brock. In the first Sun and Moon special, Brock specifically stated that he had no knowledge that Ash had traveled to Alola, and he didn’t know who Kukui was. Obviously it had never occured to me that Brock would actually make an appearance during Ash’s time in the Alola region, so I never would have guessed this would have been an issue. This episode had Brock already knowing Ash’s Alola friends, showing that that event did indeed happen. Honestly though, my Sun and Moon special still has the original problematic text, so I’m not really sure what to do with that. Let’s just consider it retconned out of existence.
As for the plot of the episode itself, I knew I needed to have revolve around Ultra Space, seeing as this was the Ultra Sun and Moon special. With the entire cast of Alola appearing, the cast for this episode was so large that I was forced to split them into two groups in order to allow everyone a chance to participate. Having it be Ash, Brock, and Lillie who were trapped in Ultra Space was actually a bit of a jab at the Sun and Moon anime by me, as, if I were the writers of it, I would have had those three, and only those three, as the main characters of the region. Speaking of jabs at the current show, you might notice I took quite a few of those. I’m not that happy with the current series right now, and I wasn’t afraid to make jokes about it.