MLP, Amending Fences – Review and Food for Thought

Welcome back to another Review here at PonyThinkTank! Before I start I wanted to give a big shout out to ManeFrameRadio (Mane-Frame.Com) who are helping me promote myself a bit more and I the same for them! Great line of relaxing music both for hardcore and casual fans! Check them out when you can!

Now, this week we’ve got “Amending Fences” which upon reading the summary, you’d think would be a small filler episode. You’d be wrong in this case as was I, this is one of the better episodes I’ve ever seen! Why you ask? Well, lets take it slow.

Opening with our teaser, we see Twilight relaxing from the recent events of the last few episodes. I like that we have a sense of time flowing more then we did previous seasons, it adds an element of reality to the setting when you feel invested. Spike comes on and makes mention of having to do the dishes..though why he’s doing the dishes I have no idea. The reason being that all the other Princesses seem to have a compliment of guards and housekeepers for them, while it seems Twilight got the proverbial short end of the stick. Six chairs, a blinking map, and a new castle is apparently all that comes in the Princess Starter Kit.

NeverGetAGoodEpisode

“Well according to this script…I don’t get much to do…AGAIN..”

Through quick explanation, Spike reminds Twilight that it’s rather ironic she’s the Princess of Friendship (which sounds like a bad B-Movie from the 80’s) due to the fact she wasn’t exactly the best friend to have back in Canterlot. This of course reminds Twilight she needs to go apologize to her friends because apparently the moment she learned about Nightmare Moon she ended up just leaving town without so much as saying goodbye to anyone. It also serves to remind the hardcore fans about the pilot episode and the VERY brief moment we saw Twilight’s friends in it and Canterlot Wedding.

We return from our intro song (ya ever wonder if Celestia and Luna get tired of the same picture each week instead of a letter? :P) to a rather…suspiciously inappropriate tower.

FishyAboutThatTower

For a show with a TV-Y, that tower seems…rather suspicious. 😛

Those of you who saw the original cover to Disney’s The Little Mermaid will understand what I mean. Though inside we see the first of many nostalgic shots, the library-tower that was in the pilot, still in it’s state of disarray and even the box that Spike drops is still there! It made me smile that they went to such length to recreate the smaller details, even though as Spike picks up the gift for Moondancer’s party (stay with me there’s more on that later) and it turned out to be a bear, he makes mention that the “rest is still there” in the box. This line prevents the ending from being a cheat, and I admire that.

After Spike makes a list for Twilight (there’s a shock) of her friends since she can’t even remember their NAMES…they make their way to door #1! Behind it we find Minutte, a rather energetic unicorn who has obviously not forgotten Twilight nor bears any ill will In fact she immediately embraces her and asks for a picture with her as no one at work believes she knows her.

Selfie

Spike can’t take a picture well it seems…

Aside from the fact the camera she has Spike use seems..DIGITAL…in the viewer but analog in the exterior, most of this is simply setting up for the next scenes, though I will return to this and other dialogue settings in a moment to expand a point.

A familiar setting of the donut shop from Grand Galloping Gala (The first one) is our next stop down flashback lane, where Minutte, Twinkleshine, and Lemon Hearts (good grief these names are almost oooozing with happy) and Twilight catch up, while Spike has a conversation in the background. Thankfully for all of us, none of the girls seem to take Twilight’s leaving too hard and all laugh at her apology, or the fact she thought she needed to make one. The reason makes me chuckle a bit as they explain they just kind of expected it based on the level of friendship she’d displayed beforehand. Apparently Twilight was so self-engrossed with her studies she wasn’t very attentive to any of her friends. Probably why Celestia sent her to learn about friendship in the first place, same as Sunset Shimmer. (Though we all know how that turned out)

allunicorns

“So yeah…turns out this scene, I don’t even get to face the camera…”

A stroll down memory lane leads them all to Professor Xavier’s er Princess Celestia’s School for Gifted Unicorns. The scene with Twilight talking with Moondancer instantly pulled dusty memories of Bubbles Utonium’s voice (Also done by Tara Strong) since she had to pitch it higher since she was younger. The main draw to me is the fact we see a globe..representing the world no doubt. We see at least two separate land masses, one representing the small Equestria landmass we’ve seen (which resembles the United States I might add) and the other one / ones are still but a mystery! It makes me happy to just postulate over the idea of the other lands!

Globe

A Globe! More geographical references! YAY!

The scene reverts and we learn there was a final missing member (Save Lyra, who we know is in Ponyville from her semi-romantic scene in Slice of Life and other small cameos) and her name is…Moondancer! The girls all try to remember where she is but quickly mention that as things went along, they just lost touch. A very important lesson to anyone growing up with the series..sometimes..you lose touch and lose friends. They make a journey to Moondancer’s last known location.

Upon knocking and striking a pin up pose, it’s quickly discovered that Moondancer is a shut in, and has no friends, instead, committing to a rigorous life of studying..well…EVERYTHING.

Manesixalmost

Just think..somewhere..THIS is our Mane Cast…

As the reality of what her actions caused, Twilight’s guilt overcomes her and after looking at what SHE could have turned out to be (lets be honest, she was nearly there) she makes it a mission to fix her mistake!

So of course the first thing to make things right is to..spy on her for three days. Which along with Spike and Minutte, they do. During the intel gathering, it’s finally revealed to Twilight what happened that day she ran off to go warn Celestia about Nightmare Moon. That small line, that throw away sentence no one thought was anything but filler. Moondancer’s Party. Minutte explains that despite the rest of the girls showing up, Twilight’s absence and subsequent vanishing sent Moondancer down a lonely road of self hating to the point she became the very hermit-pony she is today.

FLASHBACK

Betcha never thought this throw away scene would come back and haunt us, did you?

Now lets pause for a moment as I’d like to discuss something that not everyone would notice of this episode. The dialogue specifically. The lines feel REAL for once, not forced like a lot of the time. It feels like Twilight is actually just talking with her old friends, like Lemonhearts is actually just trying to be helpful when she recalls where Moondancer might be living now. All of it from the construction to the lines to the delivery of them by the voice actresses make this entire episode feel ALIVE. Even later on with Moondancers’s finale, it’s gripping compared to what we’ve been having, and I for one hope it’s going to continue.

Now, the big scene that everyone SHOULD be pondering and thankfully, many of you have, is what I noticed during the scene in the restaurant. While the girls are all trying desperate to relate to Moondancer and try to bridge the friendship they lost, there is an ominous foreshadow in the background. Careful viewers can notice that holding a menu, for a period of time that’s far far beyond normal, is a pony who resembles Starlight Glimmer! IF this is her, this of course is wonderful for a few reasons.

yesthereshis

Upper Left corner. No one looks at a menu that long!

Now..stay with me on this..

One reason is that, as I stated in the premiere this season, Starlight is the best villain we’ve had so far. She didn’t back down, even when her way was shown to be wrong. She tried to outright kill people based on the energy level of the spell Twilight shielded the villagers from. Finally, unlike Sunset, Discord, and every other ‘villain’ we’ve had, (Sirens excluded) she didn’t immediately turn to the light and redeem her self when defeated. Starlight did what any proper card carrying villain should have done..she ran in order to regroup and strike again.

Secondly, it reinforces the evolution the writing is taking. You would never have seen a story-arc that stretched an entire season like this one so far has in say..season 2. I for one, can’t wait to see where this all goes, it’s hopefully moving forward to a more mature audience base. Now back to our episode!

So after several attempts to try and force a fix of the situation, Twilight takes a different approach and calls in Pinkie Pie, who sets into action a plan for a party (Because a party seems to fix everything for some reason, still working on that.) while Twilight starts her end of the plan, namely a re-hash of how Peter Griffen lures James Woods into a trap. “Ooo! A book! Oooo! A Book! Ooo! A Book!” and so on and so fourth.

Oooo candy

Ooo! A Book! ooo! A Book!

The finale of the entire situation begins as all the girls surround Moondancer and try to throw her a party like some sort of forced intervention. Naturally she resists, but for once, it feels real to me for a few reasons. Main reason is the dialogue that is exchanged between Twilight and Moondancer..who explains that when her best friend didn’t show up to the party she threw, a party that she had to get so much courage to throw, it hit her right in the emotional breadbasket. Devastating as that was, the subsequent abandonment she felt when Twilight went off to save the world for four seasons without so much as saying goodbye devastated what was left of her confidence, resulting in what she was today, and why she felt worthless for so long.

breakdown

The emotion that actually is shown in the last act, is remarkable.

Hit with this startling realization, Twilight apologizes again, and accepts the fact that they may never be friends. Pinkie nudges in a few extra helping hooves to show Moondancer that there are a lot of folks that consider her a friend. Moondancer comes to realize she can still have a somewhat normal relationship with her previous and new friends, though it feels a bit rushed. (Granted we were running out of time, maybe we need hour long episodes now?) and we get a final payoff of the very first episode. Spike gives her the present he’s almost five seasons late with. We pull back and realize it’s a picture of all of them together before Twilight left.

There’s some hidden subtext that I honestly think I might be the only one who notices with Twilight and Moondancer. I’m not one to ship characters together, but the emotional outburst and how dramatically and deeply she was scarred makes me feel that Moondancer may be in love, or at least was in love, with Twilight. It’s kind of hard to put into words, it’s more something you see as she interacts with her over the episode. Subtle scornful tones and resentment mixed with hope. Again, my thoughts, love to hear counter arguments or supportive statements.

pictureframespike

Notice the way Moondancer seems far far more interested in Twilight. Not even the book. Twilight.

I’d like to point out something interesting about Twilight’s final solution. She lets go of the idea of forcing the friendship. Which is honestly is rather refreshing since Twilight has this tenancy of using “BE MY FRIEND” far far too aggressively. It shows character growth. People ask me why I like this so called girly series, that’s one of the reasons. You wouldn’t see this kind of emotional and character growth on anything else that’s playing.

Overall I give this an 8 out of 10. It’s dialogue is far superior to what we’re used to, the actual breakdown of Moondancer shows real emotion for once and the possible foreshadow of Starlight Glimmer were more then enough to make this enjoyable. Topped off with an episode that goes back and shows you things you remember seeing but didn’t quite understand the importance of ALWAYS get my attention, usually because I’m the only one noticing them I feel.

Again, love to hear back from everyone, I post this on three areas at the moment, get a lot of hits, but not so many comments. Agree, disagree, say Hi, it makes me feel I might be making a small contribution to the fandom!

I leave you all with a game of Pin the Tail on the Deity!

celestia

Gotta wonder what it says psychologically when you pin a tail on your deity?

-Watchfire

Equestria Girls – Friendship Games Trailer Review and Food for Thought

Title

“Friendship is Competition! Wait …. what?”

So here we are followers…the first glimpse of “The Friendship Games”. The name is cute but it also makes me wonder if there’s a possibility of a Hunger Games fiction out there. I after all made The Clopping Dead and Equestrian City. One can only assume somewhere it’ll pop up or may have already.

That being said if you haven’t watched the trailer id suggest you check it out as its helpful in context to my comments.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CDBxJEfEsGc

Back? Good 🙂

So first we notice that our setting is thankfully in the high school again and Celestia is talking about a competition (because that turned out so good last movie) with crystal prep who we can all but assume is their version of the Crystal Empire. The looks on the faces of the student body shows us that no one is quite thrilled about it. Given the last year I don’t blame them. A succubus and a set of sirens tends to drain a lot out of you in terms of any school spirit.

Not Thrilled

“Oh good..another movie we don’t get much of a part in..”

The trailer fires quick and simple which one is bound to expect from a teaser we see lovely familiar faces like sunset shimmer who has thankfully to my best assumption has been given the lead in this series. Among new faces we see a whole set of new antagonists. Though unlike our last two adventures they don’t appear to be magical..just better at everything.

Sci-Twi

“I’m thrilled to be working with you all again..do you suppose Vinyl will get to talk this time?”

The main highlight we come to is that this universe’s Twilight is in it. The only reference we’ve had so far is Pinkie Pies passing comment in the first movie and the lovely book end after the credits in the second movie. Affectionately called “Sci-Twi” this one is presented as a shy nerd of sorts who seems to be going to the prep school mentioned before.

Myshow

“After all those years of singing for you…I finally get my own show..and..here you are..AGAIN!”

This hopefully will show us where the parents are and more geographical information of this world. Little is given to us previous in fact the world stops just short of Canterlot high and Sugarcube Corners. I’m especially interested to learn about the social and civil system. The fact we had an explosion and a magical dance number and no real police came has me wondering indeed.

There’s a few hints about magic leaking into the world somehow and I assume that’s going to be a major point. There’s several new sets of antagonists and toylines are seen in the trailer, several have been vectored already which is impressive.

Sunset Shimmer being the main leader it seems is a plus for me personally, though I’d love to see if Lightning Dust is an exiled member of a team Rainbow Dash was on. Gilda being a thug would be nice too. They have so many places to go and I hope they ride this out as long as they can. This could be what Mass Effect was to those that didn’t like Dragon Age. Science vs. Fantasy. Ditching the Princess themes for a more modern approach is a surefire way to actually keep this franchise running.

On a personal note those of you who have read my teaser for Equestrian City may notice I used the portal as a catalyst for the massive injection of meta powers. I am now worried I’ll be accused of copying whatever the following screenshot is showing us 😛 Maybe I should re-work things?

Familiar

“Sci-Twi divided by Zero!”

Now, stay tuned for Episode 103’s review in a few days! Remember I love hearing from all of you so leave a comment to let me know you’re there! My stats say I get alot of hits, don’t be shy! 🙂

-Watchfire

MLP, “Party Pooped” Review and Food for Thought

Hello my few but growing viewers! It’s that time again, time for another MLP Review and Food for Thought! This week we’ve got “Part Pooped” Episode 102, and let me tell you, it’s quite a treat for a couple of really dark reasons, but we’ll get to that.

First we open on our main cast, and we see that Twilight as grown as she is is still nervous when it comes to things like making new friends. This is odd since over the past two years she’s beaten down Clancy Brown, an omnipotent princess whose name sounded like a thrown away idea for her character in the writers room, and a set of three sirens using dark magic. ALL with the “power of friendship”, you’d think by now she’d be very chilled.

YOUgotaspinoff

“I can’t believe YOU get this episode’s lead…YOU!”

We meet this week’s Monster of the week, er I mean delegates from YakYakistan (Really, that’s the name!) and they are apparently a distant culture that hasn’t had contact or relations with the Pony Empire for sometime. A gesture of making them feel at home instantly makes them upset as it’s not PERFECT down to the last detail and through what I assume is a custom in their land, they proceed to break everything.

Our intro plays and we return to the girls fixing things that are broken, the use of tools has increased by about 300% this season and I’m quite happy about that as it shows a level of reality we missed before. The one really interesting moment of the entire scene is Rarity using….wait for it…Glue! Remember where we get glue from? Sure we don’t do that much anymore with chemistry and synthetics, but this world has shown us chemistry isn’t as advanced as our world. Makes ya wonder.

We find out through subtle exposition that each of the girls is going to be trying their best to make the delegates feel at home and that the big C (Thats Celestia) doesn’t know that they are here, or is even around (Where does she go?). As Pinkie Pie was the only one who bothered reading the script, she’ll be supervising the attempts. Starting with my favorite, AJ, she brings them to the farm to show them a good night’s rest on hay-beds. Of course, it’s not the right kind of hay and they proceed to smash things again.

Following up on these rather rude guests is Fluttershy’s attempt, and we see the cutest little animals with yak horns on them. Of course, they aren’t real horns and they soon realize it, they start to smash the animals, though thankfully since we’re on early enough, the animals are saved thanks to our rating 😛

As we start to see a pattern with our Yaks, Rainbow Dash brings them snow, and…you guessed it..it isn’t the RIGHT kind of snow and they proceed to smash and throw a fit. Even Pinkie Pie seems to give up as they have a meeting and Twilight piles more tension on Pinkie, making her believe the party she’s planning for them will make or break the relations. Pinkie Pie has a minor break down during the meeting and that brings me to my first point.

ohcomeon

“Oh COME ON!”

You may remember back I referenced a notorious fanfiction named Cupcakes that was oh so recently debunked thanks to Gilda being alive. Well, this brings new life to my fire to the idea that Cupcakes still holds some truth. I’ll gather my thoughts a bit further on down in the review and present them.

NOTNUTS

You thought that other cookie cutter image was disturbing? Imagine a trayfull of these staring back atcha!

So, Pinkie gets inspired to go to YakYakistan to get something the delegates will love for the party, but, it’s a long trip. By train our Pink pony begins to narrate her own adventure, OUT LOUD, and we meet a few cameo stars who are no doubt thrilled to get work again! First we find out that the train is stopped by a herd of sheep and Pinkie runs into Ms. Cherry Jubilee (Who oddly enough, is coming out of an outhouse, one of the few references we have to the fact there are toilets in this world, and based on the size of it, it’s rather cramped unless everyone sits like Lyra) who gives her a ride to the Crystal Kingdom because apparently they need cherries there. Alot of them, some 400,000 by my count.

bathroom

“*I* Know what you were doing in there!”

As we start running out of time, the scene quickly snaps to the girls in Ponyville who Pinkie forgot to tell where she was going. They are in her room looking for her while the delegates get ready to try some cake from Mrs. Cake (who no doubt is happy to have a scene and some lines). A series of events occurs and the girls end up hitting a switch hidden in the room and it drops them into a basement.

Now as I said, since we were running out of time we decided to cut away from Pinkie, who as she narrates the rest of her journey that’s happened off screen to save us time and presumably budget on the episode. There’s quite a few in jokes in the quick rapid fire shots we see, ranging from the fact Manehatten has a version of “Cats” playing to the fact Pinkie joined a band similar to the Beatles and may have actually been the Yoko of that group. CLEARY the only ones meant to get these jokes, are the more mature of the fan-base.

Cats

“Cats” is apparently still playing there…huh.

Then the moment we’ve all been waiting for, the Crystal Kingdom, and another favorite of mine, Cadance has more lines! Woot! Though not many, apparently when someone needs to go to the border, the Princess must escort them alone. Who knew? Quickly we see YakYakistan and Pinkie makes it to the doors only, to make a mistake that sends her flying backwards!

Now, back at the ranch (FEW of you will know that reference) we see the others now in Pinkie’s Batcave, where all her props, canons, lollipops and party favors seem to come from. Not only that, the girls notice that she’s got files on EVERYONE in Ponyville, their likes, dislikes and such, for the purpose of planning parties. This may seem nice on the surface, but lets take a serious look at this and lay it on top of Cupcakes.

killme

“Yeah yeah, she may have that, but I get Rainbow Factory..which is 20% way cooler then some ol’ cupcakes story..”

Stay with me here…this makes sense I promise.

So, Google and several other sources cite the following for Split Personality Disorder:

  • Psychological: anxiety, flashback, depression, or altered consciousness
  • Behavioral: impulsivity, self-destructive behavior, or self-harm
  • Mood: mood swings or feeling detached from self
  • Also common: amnesia or blackout

Now, take that and compare that to Pinkie’s behavior in Party of One, which was no doubt the springboard for Cupcakes. Pinkie’s lack of interaction and isolation quickly begins a cataclysmic mental breakdown where items begin to talk to her, depression and anxiety set in. Much like what happens at the midway point in this episode.

The gist of what happens in Cupcakes is that Pinkie seems to have had, or always has had, a severe psychological issue, to the point she’s been killing ponies and taking their cutie marks, horns, wings and making a coat of many colors. The way she speaks to Rainbow Dash in that episode is delightfully detached at how awful the things she’s doing is.

So we now find out Pinkie’s got the ability and resources to create a database of Obsessive Compulsive levels, not to mention the fact she’s apparently been HIDING this room from..well everyone she’s close to. All of these things add up to the idea that Pinkie still has the ability to be what I hope she really is. Deeply disturbed and deeply troubled at times, and hiding that behind her projections of laughter and happy-go-lucky. The reason I like Cupcakes and other fictions like it is not due to the gore thats there, but the underlying implications, in it and in ones like Rainbow Factory. The reality of this world we all love may not always be the flawless gem we’re fed each Saturday.

batcave

“How did..she build all this?”

Now, back to reality, or as close to we can get at the moment. Pinkie comes flying through the door, apparently on the largest amount of momentum known to ponykind, and finds out they’ve discovered not only that Twilight is afraid of Mexican food (what? o.0) but more importantly, she discovers the morale of the episode in a sudden flash of brilliance!

Instead of making the delegates at home with their culture, she decides to show them why this culture is so much fun as well! Quickly the lesson sinks in and our next scene we find that everything turned out OK in the end!

war

“Maybe I shouldn’t leave you unsupervised so much, Twilight..”

An interesting side note to this: during one of the delegates scenes, they give up and declare War on the ponies, vowing to come back with more forces. This is the first real mention of conflict on a massive scale, and the concept is not new to Twilight, which means that somewhere in history, the ponies have had to go to all out war. Food for thought.

So, overall I give this a 5 out of 10, it’s nice for deeper tones and overall exploration of the world again. It could be that we’re hitting our mid-stride and the episodes when sorted in the writer’s room that were weaker were put here. I wouldn’t call this awful, but I do hope we hit some more epic levels like we did at the beginning of the season!

Until next time, here’s Pinkie Pie letting the more mature of the fans know she’s aware why we’re watching…

thisiswhyyouwatch

“THIS! Is this what you wanted to see? HMM?”

-Watchfire

MLP “Princess Spike” Review and Food for Thought

This week’s episode is called “Princess Spike” and despite the rather implied idea in it’s title, is not about Spike being Rule 63’d. (Though most of you will know there’s no absence of it in the fandom, from Spike and Princess Twilight shipped as female/female to Spike and male Rainbow Dash in a questionable relationship)

Last week’s episode was one of the best of the season so it would be hard to follow up something of that caliber, and thankfully they didn’t try to shoot for the moon. This week’s episode is what I’d like to call a ‘fluff piece’, just enough information to sooth us die hard curious fans and more then enough to keep the ‘target’ audience happy.

No-like-spike

“Why is it I keep getting the short end of the stick with these episodes?” “You and me both, Spike”

We open with a lovely view of Canterlot Castle and it appears that we have many ponies and even a griffon all gathered for a meeting. Quickly we find out that there are fifty (50) of these delegates and they are here to help our princesses understand more about the land of Equestria. I find it strange that there’s 50 states her in North America and oddly, there’s the same number represented here. I find it rather comforting and familiar, which is why I think they did that. (Though my state’s represented rather…unusually..more on that later)

Then we meet Spike, whose more then happy to serve any of the needs of the delegates! If this were a fanfiction we’d be in for quite a display of semi erotic encounters..but it’s not and we quickly find out as Spike does that everyone there is far far more interested in talking with Twilight directly.

Spike begins what I assume he does when he’s not in a scene which is clean Twilight’s room. Quickly bursting in, Cadance, no doubt thrilled to have more then three seconds of cameo time since A Canterlot Wedding or that lovely Discord episode, informs Spike that Twilight has worked herself into a state of near complete exhaustion. Twilight wanders in looking like she’s just been through a Brony Convention and promptly goes to bed.

mobbed by bronies

“So many bronies….mobbed…got my 8×10’s…scattered…”

What I loved so far was if you watch the Griffon in the opening scene, it claps it’s hands, which implies that hands, or the concept of, is not entirely missing. (Which contradicts Rainbow Dash’s question at the end of the first movie) and I’ve always had a soft spot for Cadance, she’s got such a different style of leading, though all the Princesses do, and it’s refreshing to see her for once without her being set dressing.

So predictably Spike begins his job and over corrects by chasing a bird from outside INTO the room. We find out though that Twilight is OUT like a light, the bird’s song doesn’t even wake her thankfully. No doubt dreaming that she’s a blond super heroine in Townsville. Each new problem that pops up is comically and progressively severe. He even stops a construction pony working on a water main.

it has handles

Why do you suppose in a world where hands aren’t used alot..this thing was designed with hand holds? 😛

This gives us a distinctly unique view of Canterlot that I began this blog for. The very FACT that Canterlot has such an advanced water delivery system is a point of debate. I’ve often said that Celestia may be intentionally holding back different technology that she’s privy to in order to keep the civilization she’s molding on whatever particular track she wants.

Stay with me on this, I have thought about this. We know that Twilight Sparkle went through the portal to a human world that was by far more advanced and on par with our own with technology. She returns at the end of the movie and everyone is still fine, no absurd amount of time has passed. We can assume from this that time there and time in Pony World Prime is identical. So for the most part both worlds if no interference was made, should be on the same track within reason. Thoughts?

Anyway, Spike starts to use Twilight’s name to stop the various noisy conditions which as any one can clearly see aren’t random and will eventually pile up. As things start to spin slowly but inevitably out of control, Spike is confronted with delegates (Mainly ponies) who want to get her opinion on everything from important issues to completely mundane fashion issues.

This raises a rather fascinating thought in regards to the freedom of thought or capability there of the overall world has. It seems they turn to the nearest princess to fix the major issues of the world, not just monsters but down to what color their bow should be. Seems handy to keep your world dependent on you if you were trying to keep them subjugated..no?

Spike turns to making decisions himself and claiming that it came from the princess who, to his credit, he DID try to wake up and ask things, but she was very loopy and couldn’t be counted on. This brings us to my state, the lovely northstar state, and how we seem to be represented. A New York pony and a Minnesota Pony are one of the first collisions Spike has to deal with. I can honestly say I wasn’t entirely put off by the Fargo-esque hat and accent (We don’t have accents I don’t understand how people thing we do don’tcha know?) but it was a cringe worthy moment.

winnieapplenevermind

“Don’tcha know you ain’t de’ only ones who use woodchippers for problems..”

So as Spike falls into a pit of self indulgence, it’s quite interesting to see what he chooses as his perks, from a massage to many other little things that do indeed help us get a better idea of his character. In the end thats all this episode really is, it’s to show insight into Spike and establish some economic and political layout to the more hardcore bronies.

Despite Cadance trying to reason with Spike, the dam finally breaks, and so does the water main, flooding the main meeting room and destroying the statue made up of 50 gems (each from one city) and angering the combined force of all the ponies that Spike had been giving advice to under the guise of Twilight. They storm her tower in an angry mob scene that resembles the villagers attacking the Beast’s castle and finally, Twilight, properly rested, wakes up.

newcontract

“Just signed on for two more seasons, and three more movies…I’m feeling GOOOOD”

It’s interesting how calm and collected she is to the delegates, a true testament to her character’s growth. The timid bookworm we first saw in season one now can handle a crowd of upset ponies and one griffon. Spike, despite trying to make a run for it, confesses himself to Twilight and she quickly finds out all the issues that he’s made. Not angry, she tells Spike what he needs to learn from this, and he promptly gives us a heart felt speech, and begins to rebuild the statue, one stone at a time.

betterfans

“This is why my fans are smarter then the few you have, Spike.”

Moved by his speech, the delegates help him and we quickly find out that if you do something bad, it’s entirely alright if you’re sorry. Well maybe not entirely the lesson, but still, it feels like it falls a bit short of showing any real lesson and feels more like..as I said..a fluff piece 🙂

Summed up, I give it a 3 out of 10. It was cute for what it was, and I like the looks into how some technology works and has been settled into pony society. The glance at the fifty cities was a wonderful nod to how BIG the world is supposed to be (imagine naming them all, I’d hate to be in the writer’s room since each has a horse theme) and a taboo sin inside me likes when Cadance gets more then three lines and a booty bump from Twilight in a flashback. Next week should be interesting to see!

Again, TWEET me, spread my blog, and don’t hesitate to comment and ask questions, I build this for a reason. Maybe one day I’ll write for an actual Brony Page 😉

-Watchfire

MLP Episode #100 – Slice of Life – Review and Commentary

It’s that time, the time we’ve all been waiting for: Episode 100! Slice of Life! The episode teased a nice look at what happens while our Mane 6 is out saving friendship as we know it. Let me just say, the writers don’t fail to deliver in this case! I’m going to keep this one as short as possible since this episode needs to be seen for yourself and words alone cannot do it justice 🙂

Muffin is my name now

“I’m now named Muffin :]”

We start out with a teaser intro where we establish Cranky Doodle Donkey and Matilda are finally getting married. You remember them? They were the secondary characters in an episode where Pinky had arguably the most iconic song of her career as a pony “Smile” 🙂 Check it out it still makes me smile when it hits my car’s speakers. Moving on, we quickly find out that thanks to Cranky’s thrifty side, the discount invitation maker (what kinda cutie mark is that you think?) he went to misprinted the date and now, they have to move the wedding up to that day!

“It means this damn thing doesn’t work at all!” Fans should know that she’s wearing what Dr. Brown is wearing in Back to the Future 

Humorous as it is, there’s two distinct things I like about this intro and I’ll tell you the first. We use the word “elope” I applaud them for being brave, I recall not that long ago shows were very hesitant to use a grown up word like that. I hope it’s a step forward, though I doubt we’ll hear “Damn” anytime soon.

Secondly, the moment I personally was waiting for, Derpy speaks officially this time! Now before you jump too high, you’ll notice her name in the credits is “muffin” or “muffins” I don’t honestly care, as I’ll be referring to her as Derpy, the name we knew her best as. The entire fiasco about a minor percentage of folks possibly being upset over the name Derpy is simply silly in my opinion. The name is meant to imply clumsiness not in a negative way but a positive light. ANY other implication is the fault of the so called “wounded” faction that called for the name change. Her name was meant to make you smile not feel bad, and if you watch her, she IS a bit Derpy…HOWEVER, it does NOT mean she’s stupid, even IF she has Wall-eyes. Niether the name nor the condition she has means she’s stupid, or a lesser person in any way, shape or form, JUST like anyone in the real world isn’t any less for the same reason.

I have a different voice this time dr whooves

“You know I act like the 10th doctor but sound like the 6th and yet am supposed to be the 11th..this IS confusing..still..not a ginger..”

So then we go to our first act, which is a Dr. Whooves and Derpy act it seems. We’re treated to so many Dr Who and in jokes it’s near impossible for me to go into them without dragging on. Lets just say you won’t be disappointed at all. One thing that does catch my ear is when Dr. Whooves describes how long he’s devoted his life to science, he says decades then corrects himself to centuries. Quite an interesting thought as the only long lived ponies known to us are the Princesses.

Does scoots have lines I forget

“Does Scoots even get any lines or do I speak next?”

We flawlessly move to a scene that normally we’d be focusing on the Mane 6 but instead we’re treated to a crowd shot and one of my favorite lines from the show so far from Sweetie Belle. It refers to how most of the problems are dealt with in 30 minutes or so and it’s a diamond. We also see that maybe Big Mac and Cheerilee ARE dating, but it’s never dealt with more as the jokes and lines fire non-stop from the fact that there’s a giant BugBear attacking the town to the uncanny fact that since Twilight came to town a certain pony hasn’t had much work in doing weddings.

they ship us you know

“I’ve been reading and everyone seems to agree, we’re a couple..”

Another memorable moment occurs soon after when Lyra and Bon Bon have their own scene, one that shouldn’t be missed. The closeness of the two has got most of the internet foaming at the mouth in regards to the fact they are..more then friends. We’ll leave that up to you to determine, though it seems plausible.

totally shipped

This whole “they’re just friends thing” DOES seem to lose it’s bottom if you watch this enough o.0

Most of the episode spirals too fast to break down into anything other then fan-gasm moment, though I can’t help but be entirely amused at Steven Magnet (you know him, he’s that sea serpent Rarity helped in the very first episode! Na..I didn’t remember him either..) and his..fabulous way of speaking. I swear the spa ponies have new voices … again!

the moment some have waited for

Ahhh the Odd-Couple 🙂

shippiung

“They think we are WHAT?”

Finally act 3 begins it’s final approach as the fan-gasmic explosions continue, this time fueled by Vinyl Scratch and Octavia! We learn that canon-wise they do live together, and yet, those darn fans are now assuming they are more then that. Regardless of their relationship to each other, the music that happens next is awesome! The way they mix quickly shows in fact they have been friends for a while, and the ensuring chase scene on Scratch’s mobile thump-machine is the final kick start the finale needs.

I thought you were

“You know the more we train this girl the more likely she is to just run away with the show…”

As our favorite DJ scoops up ponies left and right, we’re treated to the finale real awesome moment where Gummi, Pinkie’s seemingly stoic pet, has an internal monologue that’s rather deep, and oddly enough, a very good question in terms of what the point of life is.

i have no lines

“It’s ok..he always cries when he doesn’t have any lines….say aren’t you a playable character in Left 4 Dead 2?”

The wedding occurs inside town hall, and everyone else you could possibly think of is present. It’s incredible how many cameos we see in just a small scene but it’s enough to make you smile as a fan. The highlight in my opinion is two fold. Princess Celestia and Princess Luna bickering back and fourth in a very candid manner makes you remember that even immortal sisters have their moments. The Mayor (who I personally just love, she doesn’t get enough face time in my opinion) gives the most incredible of speeches during the wedding that is meant for both the in character moment and quite clearly a message to the loyal fans who have made the series as successful as it is. I couldn’t help but crack a wide smile as it finished.

I give this episode a 9 out of 10, the only thing I would have liked was Zecora having a talking role, and Vinyl with a speaking voice. Though I understand personally that if Scratch had a voice, it would almost break the magic she holds over a lot of the fans. Maybe one day we’ll get her one. The entire BugBear attack would be an awesome B story (or in this case, A story) for an entirely new episode, much ,like Spikes adventure in season 3 was mirrored by the Mane 6’s.

Until next time,

-Watchfire

PS, I leave you with Lyra sitting provocativly 😉

sitting is best pony

“I..I swear I didn’t even know there was a character named Hellboy…” or Lyra Sitting is Best Pony! 🙂

Equestrian City – Concept Art – Heroes

Being a writer with little art skill, I look to others to draw what I see in my head. Here’s some samples for Equestrian City! Unfamiliar with the idea? Read this short intro, takes place near the end of Equestria Girls:Rainbow Rocksrd_colortest_final_2_by_darthmind-d8flh03

This was my first drawing of Rainbow Dash, her superhero name being “Shadow Strike”. Toying with the idea of having her lose her sight or at least some of it, I thought it would be more inspiring in a way she wouldn’t give up and keep fighting, compensating with tech and keeping her handicap a secret from most. A mixture of Batman, Daredevil, and Robin, she’s what I like to call a natural hero. No Flight, no super speed, just outmaneuvering and out fighting the enemy! 🙂

heroes aj

Applejack took on a Batman like persona first, but then I passed that onto Dash. I thought about it for a while and realized she was practically a shoe in for the country girl turned super hero archetype. She just screams Smallville I think, after the event she’s forced to move into the city and help her Uncle Julius (Yes I’m keeping that name :P) Orange. A mixture of Superman and Ms. Marvel, her outfit was more inspiried by the latter. Flight, strength and a near impermeable skin gives her the name of “Impervia”

heroes twilight

The last one I’m talking about today is Twilight Sparkle. When designing her I had to keep in mind she was the only one completely out of place in the world and after the “event” that creates the world, she’s now trapped there seeminly forever. I didn’t picture her sitting around moping. I imagined she’d start to do what she always did: Read. After learning that world’s “magic” she became to incorporate in  a way that could tap into her ability to use magic (elementals, sonic, ect) and channel it. The outfit from Power Ponies would have been more then likely Spike’s idea. Becoming a mixture of Tony Stark and Witchcraft from Champions, she takes the name of the “Masked Matter-horn” for real this time!

Thanks for reading, PLEASE give me some feedback if you get a moment, it’s hard to shape clay (write, think, hone) that is my story without SOME input. 😉

-Watchfire

MLP, Season 5, Episode 8 Editorial & Thought Exercise

The Lost Treasure of Griffonstone

So welcome back my few but growing watchers and clickers, it’s time for the next episode of our latest season! Now I warn you this week it MIGHT be a bit heavy for some of you or dare I say offensive to some in terms of religion. I want to preface this by saying no one is right and no one is wrong for being any religion, each person has the right to choose and follow their own desires, devotion and path. I make no judgment as such. Two very close friends told me when I was at ends about posting my thoughts this week that there is far too much censorship already in terms of “possibly” offending someone and to go ahead. They also, for various reasons, wish not to be thanked by name 😛

We start out with everyone’s favorite party girl, Pinkie Pie, where she’s about to bake a rather large cake based on the recipe she riffles off to her alligator. Before she can really get started, the new Bat-Phones that each of the Mane 6 (or does Sunset count yet?) have in their booty now. It beeps and flashes and reminds us of the Phone to the Mayor’s office in Powerpuff Girls (Wouldn’t be too unheard of, as the show’s creative force is the wife of the creator of the three protectors of Townsville and the art style is similar) and away she goes to find out what’s wrong in Gotham this week!

Arriving at the castle of friendship (That still sounds silly :P) we see that the Map that’s been sending our girls all over the place is now sending them to the Throat of the World er I mean Griffonstone. It seems that the mission only requires Pinkie Pie and Rainbow Dash since, for whatever reason, the holographic magic display only hovers their marks over the destination.

 

See I told you it looked like the throat of the world last time didn't I? :P

See I told you it looked like the throat of the world last time didn’t I? :Well it’s still tall. >.>

Those of us who are long time fans know that the only Griffon we’ve seen for the most part (save the Equestria Games) is Gilda! You remember Gilda?

I've got hands, I can't possibly lose

I’ve got hands, I can’t possibly lose

She was in season one’s episode about how sometimes our friends just won’t get along no matter what we do. She was also the first and only griffon Pinkie Pie ate according to the infamous fanfiction “Cupcakes”.

I wouldn’t go reading it unless you’re into psychological thrillers, it explores the idea that Pinkie Pie actually has a very serious mental condition. We see elements that supports this in “Party of One” season 1 where when left alone and isolated for even a small amount of time, her minds begins to shatter and objects talk to her, despite the fact we see SHE is the one moving their mouths, ect. Though if you can stomach a bit of deeper character development and are a fan of psycho-thriller-killer novels and movies, it’s worth a read. Just go in knowing THATS what your getting. I also recommend Rainbow Factory but that s another day and another review. I can only assume the writers finally came to use Gilda again since they can then say for a fact Cupcakes didn’t happen, I personally disapprove but that’s me.

Now, after a few more scenes that are meant to remind us that Twilight’s still in charge, and to inform us of Gtiffonstone’s back-story, our two friends venture towards Griffonstone!

Apparently Griffonstone was an awful place of coveting thy neighbors…everything before a king united them via a golden idol! (Wait, I get back to that later :P) and isn’t very social, so an updated report on the culture is not available, so the last real book on the matter informs they are flourishing under the idol. Predictably, the place is…a dump.

Even Pinkie thinks it's a dump!

Even Pinkie thinks it’s a dump!

Gilda and Dash run into each other and she quickly delivers the final part of history. Apparently the king lost the idol during a battle and it fell into a chasm nearby, hence without it, the society, with nothing to idolize and stand behind, collapsed into disarray. As we find out that the griffons are basically all grumpy and for whatever reason, all named with a name starting with “G”, we also discover that Pinkie and Dash have two distinctive ways of solving this mission problem.

Rainbow Dash declares that they need to find the idol and that will fix things, to which Gilda immediately mentions that her idea is “Typical Pony Hero Complex” which tells me that ponies seem to be viewed as a giant superpower that shall be remain nameless. One who tends to try and solve the problems of the entire world? There’s something to think on isn’t it? 🙂

"Typical Pony Hero Complex!"

“Typical Pony Hero Complex!”

Pinkie decides that there’s a problem to be solved via the Library (Twilight’s idea) so she heads over to the destroyed library and runs into Gilda again, who we find is baking scones to raise money to just plain leave the area. The two arguably never had any real time to get to know each other last time mainly due to Gilda’s personality and the need for the writers to make her one dimensional at the time (Hey, they didn’t know we would go nuts over the show then :P) so the following interactions let us see “Why the grumpy griffon is so grumpy” through a series of half forced exposition where we find out breaking out into song is forbidden (The one idea I agree with so far 🙂 ), there’s no party store, and not even a bakery! Pinkie’s stumped and loses several teeth on Gilda’s less then properly baked scones!

NOSINGING!

No Songs Allowed! :< Anti Disney Bill 😛

Rainbow Dash’s side of the story shows a more adventure / Daring Do / Indiana Jones like adventure, for the kids who are getting bored by this point of the show. It deals with her repealing down to the chasm where she intends to bring back the idol that’s down there.

Pinkie Pie has the same realization that the audience does when Gilda mentioned no one’s friends in the town and she DID have a friend once (Dash) and it didn’t turn out so well in the end. The two collide after Rainbow Dash breaks her leg (Remember Horse Hospitals? :P) and is stuck, unable to fly or escape. Pinkie Pie decides to help her by throwing her a rope, and I think we all know where that gag was going before she threw it. 😉

Should have seen that coming...

Should have seen that coming…

The story elements combine when Pinkie runs to get Gilda and tells her Dash needs help and reminds her that she was once her friend. Naturally since impending doom is present, we go to a flashback where we see the most adorable itty bitty griffon befriending lil Dashie back in the day. Those of you from the beginning remember the motto they chant at the end of the flashback, it’s like a small Easter egg. My favorite element occurs when Pinkie Pie talks to us, shattering the fourth wall again and re-affirming my suspicions of her actual nature.

Don't tell Dash, but *I* got the spin off series. It'll be our secret!

Don’t tell Dash, but *I* got the spin off series. It’ll be our secret!

The climax of the film should make Indiana Jones fans go “Oh I see what you did there” when Dash, Pinkie and Gilda all end up tied to each other on a ledge that’s apparently made of rock candy since it’s unable to hold weight for more then a minute. The only thing missing was someone yelling “Throw me the whip; throw me the idol!” and Gilda going “I can almost..reach it…Dash..” as she grabs at the idol that turns out to be real.

"I can...almost...reach it...Indy..."

“I can…almost…reach it…Indy…”

Naturally instead of letting them fall, Gilda learns her lesson suddenly and pulls them both up, letting the idol fall and confessing her friendship for them both!

Now here’s where I’m going to get to the point that I was afraid of mentioning. Lets now do a thought experiment in terms of what we’ve seen in this episode and apply it to previous episode lore.

The main “practice” (I use that world loosely in this case) of Ponies is the concept of “friendship” and how it can essentially fix everything, right? We see this time and time again. This mighty thing called friendship has beaten back Discord’s attacks, Sunset Shimmer, the Sirens, and every other B-Card villain between finales and movies. It seems infallible, conquers all, and it’s apparently the most dominant idea as ponies seem to be the majority.

Stay with me here.

So this magical map that’s telling the mane 6 to go places and “fix” things for lack of a better term came to them after friendship helped them beat a seemingly unbeatable foe. It’s now semi sentient, and sending them to a town that, according to legend, prospered after the culture (Griffons) began “worshiping” a golden idol. The moment the idol was gone, they turned on each other.

They had nothing to “believe” in if you will. So this map sends them to a land of “non believers” and has them show the town that everything associated with the idol they worshiped leads to nothing but trouble. After all that trouble it recently caused is solved by one of the griffons turning to “friendship” the town seems back on track.

Now take a step back and think with me: the main deity responsible for “friendship” being accepted so much with ponies is Celestia, and her little sister. Celestia then painstakingly creates an civilization based on her ideas and it spreads. Maybe not far enough, so she wants to expand to other cultures to embrace her ideas, but doing so by force would not be viable in this case as it’s counter productive. So being immortal, she waits and finds the perfect “student” to send out with her own band of friends. After testing their resolve, she finds them acceptable and gives them more power and abilities over time, not too fast or it’ll show her cards to them. Finally they best an awful powerful foe and show that given absolute power, the student will return said power to her teachers. The perfect apostle, per say.

Now, with more resources at their disposal, they begin to spread the lessons taught to them about “friendship” and slowly, the way of life spreads.

I ask you now, as a deity, wouldn’t that be easier to do if you had immortality and the time to sink into it. Much easier then dominating the land via force and risking a rebellion?

PRAISE THE SUN @_@

PRAISE THE SUN @_@

Anyway, it’s food for thought. I don’t think one way or another in this matter, I’m here to present ideas, concepts and ways of thinking. I simply ask if you go somewhere with it, give me proper respect in the matter 😛

All in all, I give this episode a 7 out of 10. I enjoyed seeing more parts of Equestria and thus, new cultures, new ideas. It was nice to see Gilda again despite the fact my head canon keeps Pinkie’s psychological state is unstable.

 

Until next time,

-Watchfire

MLP, Season 5, Episode 7, “Make New Friends, But Keep Discord” Editorial

Welcome again to another Editorial by me, Watchfire! This week’s episode (after a week hiatus thanks to some other show!) is called and so let me just say, it involves Discord!

You recall Discord yes? He’s the “Q” like entity that is voiced by none other then John de Lancie, the same actor who portrayed “Q” on Star Trek! Mannerisms and “magic” is remarkably similar to “Q” in this incarnation as well, but we’ll go into that later! Discord, having been reformed by our very own Fluttershy, is now trying his best to be less chaotic and “good” for lack of a better term the last few seasons.

Discord and Tea

This episode focuses on Jealousy and Envy, both Deadly sins (one in fact by name) to be sure, so I’m starting to see a pattern with our storyarcs so far, as are most of you no doubt. We find ourselves in the middle of one of Fluttershy and Discords weekly tea parties, where she chats away in the almost carefree way she’s best known for with the reformed Lord of Chaos. The situation turns awkwardly serious as Discord learns of a new friend Fluttershy has made by the name of (get ready for this) Treehugger.

Immediately I had to chuckle, but I quickly understood why later that day I was seeing weed references with Fluttershy and her new friend were flooding the boards I keep an eye on. I stayed the course however, as we all did no doubt, as I was more interested on the seething amount of Jealousy that was dripping off of Discord as he listened politely to his closest, and best to my recollection, only, friend and her exploits with this new acquaintance. By the time we reach the intro, it’s more then apparent this week’s lesson is about Jealousy and Envy! We also find out the Grand Galloping Gala (that song’s still stuck in my head, make it stop!) has finally, after four seasons, returned and not only that, Fluttershy has asked Treehugger to the Gala (though we never really hear the term “date”, it’s by far the nearest we’ve gotten to any reference to courting, save Hearts and Hooves day)

As Discord deals with the slowly boiling pot of envy and jealousy that’s sure to come to a boil within 22 minutes, we run into Applejack, Rarity and Rainbow Dash at Carousel Boutique along with their sibling counterparts…and Scootaloo (as adoption is never really canonized yet, despite all the cute pictures we see on the internet) and they are all getting ready to take the Cutie Mark Crusaders to their first Gala. Well Rarity is, Dash and AJ are, big surprise, competing by playing what appears to be 5 card stud. (again, we run into the issue of how they are holding the cards :P).

Poker PoniesDiscord makes a “Q” like entrance and scares the dickens out of everyone, and never really gets a chance to properly ask if any of them would take HIM to the Gala, as he doesn’t seem to have a ticket or a way in since Fluttershy has asked her new friend to the dance, instead of him.

My favorite scene of the episode then occurs when Discord and Pinkie Pie share the screen. An obvious Metal Gear Solid reference plays out as Pinkie is, as usual, unphased by an object that doesn’t belong in the background is revealed to be Discord. He fumbles again, never really asking directly, and sidetracks, asking her for every cake in the place! As she grabs the actual camera that’s filming the scene and shakes it with joy, shattering the fourth wall in a way only Q and Pinkie could do, he notices Fluttershy and Treehugger, which causes him to beeline, much to Pinkie’s dismay.

Fourth Wall Pinkie

Finally, the elusive, must talked about Treehugger is seen, and Discord is far then impressed by this would-be rival. Treehugger’s personality is obviously a play on both the beatnik crowd, the hippies, and she’s green so I’m going out on a limb and saying Greenpeace since she’s named Treehugger. Discord tries to nice them both to death by letting them know how much her going to the Gala with her and not him is not bothering him as the pot continues to boil inside him.

A transport later, Discord is in what I can assume is his home, where Chaos rules, and nothing makes any real sense. My favorite element is the bunnies in the form of dust, and the fact when he washes the dishes, they become dirty. Muttering and upset, he reaches another checkpoint on the road of jealousy, determining how to “get back” at the one who “wronged” him. (Boba Fett had it right kids, Revenge doesn’t pay 😉 )

DusbunniesMuch to his surprise, a ticket arrives for the Gala and his plans are set in motion, letting us wonder for but a moment before we transition to the lovely Princess Celestia and Twilight Sparkle, who has taken on some of the duties of the Gala this time. It’s always lovely to hear Celestia, no matter what she’s saying, so I enjoyed this. What also catches my attention is that AJ, RD and her merry crew of fillies are still in several shots and have enough lines to make us notice them for just a moment, then they disappear again. This is reminiscent of the split episode they had with Spike and the girl’s pets and the girls going to Canterlot, each ALMOST running into each other in both episodes. I can only assume the way it’s highlighted as main characters and not background ponies, that we may see the “B” side to this episode, with the CMCs doing something remarkably cute, yet obviously a bad idea.

Discord’s arrival with a gelatinous blob named Smooze is but the beginning of issues at the Gala. We quickly learn that the ooze Q has..er..that Discord has summoned is sentient, and very hungry. It appears to eat valuable gems and metals.

Our Chaos Lord, Discord (hey that rhymes..) immediately tries everything, including bumping into Fluttershy and Treehugger physically, to make them notice him and his “friend’ in a vain attempt to instill the same feelings of hurt and jealousy he’s feeling into Fluttershy. Of course, this doesn’t work since this is Equestria and not a Soap Opera (though that might be a show I’d watch..) and he keeps trying to step up his game, eventually forgetting his rather hungry companion, who after it eats Rarity’s gems, he places inside a closet of edible crowns with gems. (The real highlight of the scene is after Discord vacuums Rarity’s outfit off her, she seems to feel VERY exposed and behaves as if suddenly nude in front of people, despite the fact she’s not usually wearing clothing)

 

A lovely Night at the Improv moment occurs as Discord tries to do stand up to get attention, the older fans will know Jerry Seinfeld and Rodney Dangerfield impressions when they see them. We even get a cameo from Maud Pie, the stoic yet oddly intellectually stimulating sister of Pinkie Pie (Who we had previously called “Inky” thanks to a Pac Man joke that went too far, though I still prefer that name). Before the Smooze bursts free and has eaten the entire closet, flooding the room with..well..himself!

Before I go on, I’d like to mention that this episode’s background is far more active then I’ve seen before. Instead of background ponies, we see very specific ones talking with our main cast. The RD and AJ thing mentioned earlier, and during several scenes with Discord talking, we notice Pinkie Pie talking to someone else also. I can’t help but hope there’s different elements of this episode that come back and “haunt” us if you will, much like How I Met Your Mother did through out it’s run!

Now, as the third act rounds itself into our eager waiting minds, we notice that Sparkle nor Celestia can undo the flood of Smooze, their magic USELESS against it. This raises several questions regarding magic and realms, limiting factors, ect. But before most of us can go “hey wait..” TreeHugger saves the day with projected meditation, much to Discord’s hatred, and that is the proverbial last straw for him. FINALLY we see him just grab Treehugger and RIP a tear in space and time (this supports my theory about him being “Q” and Pinkie is actually one too but doesn’t know it, but more on that later) threatening to throw her in.

Like a Q

This opens up a whole new canon of his knowledge of other dimensions and realities, you realize? 🙂

Finally Twilight Sparkle and the girls step in to stop him and save the day, an attempt that is easily stopped by Discord sending Smooze after them, and out goes the “Captain Planet” moment (That moment where the main cast saves the day as usual), save Fluttershy. She finally gets up in his face and demands an explanation, and Discord finally gives her one by telling her his feelings. (Which, if we don’t know the structure by now, is how he should have handled it in the first place :P). She makes him see that just because she has a new friend, it doesn’t make him less of one, and admittedly he pleads that Friendship is a new concept to him, which IS true.

As time runs short in the episode, we quickly wrap up the problem and everything’s fine and dandy again as the party kicks off with Pinkie’s help. Twilight Sparkle apologizes to the Princess thinking she’s failed (there’s another element we need to mix up, that apology with the same overture playing while she does it) in her duties at the Gala. Of course, being immortal and terribly bored no matter what, Celestia reveals she’s had a wonderful time, and she was in fact the one to invite Discord to begin with! (Apparently most formal functions aren’t fun without scandal or some crazy fellow with a lampshade on his head is a lesson you learn while your sister is away for 1,000 years?)

All in all, I rate this one a 6 out of 10, as it’s above average, the references are well worth the rewind of the episode, and Discord is always fun, no matter if he’s bumbling with Fluttershy, or mocking Picard on the Enterprise. The Jealousy was a bit apparent but I do like how we’re visiting more base elements of human behavior and slowly teaching how they operate.

As far as my theory on Discord, Pinkie and the Q, I’ll post that if there’s interest, or if I find free time 🙂

Until next time,

-Watchfire

MLP, Season 5, Episode 6 “Appleloosa’s Most Wanted”

Hey Pony fans, it’s time for a new episode! Lets get going! 🙂

As we coast along from the emotional outbursts and deep look at death our last episode showed us, we find ourselves from the fluffy clouds of Cloudsdale, to Dusty rodeo of Appleloosa in a fluff episode. (You remember Appleloosa? It’s where we went in Over a Barrel in season one!) and back to the loving embrace of that Western charm that Applejack tends to give us.

There we find through quick exposition and deduction that the Cutie Mark Crusaders are both there to (GASP) try and get a cutie mark in the guise of enjoying a rodeo AND have apparently been deemed this half of the Season’s device to drive forward the narrative. (I can’t help but think we’re exposed to them so much as a method to make them more present for a giant reveal that at least one of them gets their mark by the end of the season along with whatever problem the real cast has :P)

There, my favorite southern pony, Applejack, is shown bucking (heh) her way to making a cute tetris style stack of hay because her distant relative Braeburn (You remember him right? He was introduced to give us a subconscious link to a one trick town in the episode I mentioned previous, along there we found out the Native American culture was represented by buffalo for the most part) has broken his front leg

Brauburn-Horse-doctor

“Ya’ll know we can’t ACT on the impulses, even if most of the Internet is shipping us right?”

(which if memory served meant death for a horse?)

Horse-Hospitals

The joy of this reunion is shattered as the haystacks collapses and we learn about this week’s boogie man, Troubleshoes! He’s apparently a whole heap a’ trouble for the folks around the area, causing all sorts of problems we quickly list off and just as swiftly forget about.

We also learn that criminology is present in at least Western regions of Equestria as our town law enforcement mentions he examined the hoofmark and matched it with little more then half a day. If this means he’s that good, or he’s guessing, thats up for debate honestly (one of the reasons I made this was for healthy debate, tell me your thoughts). Naturally with all the issues, Applejack sends her sister and her friends home, and considers leaving herself since she’s never really been faced with something as awful as a saboteur (never having faced down a bumbling unicorn or a magic eating demon or anything) when Braeburn shoves her off screen and tells her to resume her duties basically and he’ll keep a constant watch over the other three.

Of course in classic Act 2 fashion, the guard falls asleep and the three make it out the window and search for Troubleshoes so they can bring him to justice for the safety of everyone I mean so they can get their cuties mark (There’s one lesson kids, as long as YOU gain from it, it’s fine to do whatever :P) Comedy ensues as the three quickly and predictably get lost, and suffer a mudslide that ends up reminding me of a picture that Smudgeproof drew once (don’t go looking, it’s not pleasant 😉 I do it for research purposes!)

Smudgeproof

Smudge would be proud of this episode.

We finally meet Troubleshoes and we find out that not only does he seem to be a relative of Eeyore but he’s clumsy as all git’out (this country talk must be catching on) as he falls down in a manner that would make Dick Van Dyke proud. Quickly we move to find out that our newest friend is not meaning any ill will to anyone but is just prone to accidents, thanks to bad luck, his upside down horseshoe of a cutie mark. He’s convinced that there’s nothing more to do about that either, as he recounts a tale of trying out for the rodeo in his youth only to be laughed at from the accidents he caused.

Trouble-donkey

” Oh hello, have any of you seen mah’ tail?” Troubleshoes, a distant relative of Eeyore :)=

This sets a dangerous precedent that tied back to Applebloom’s dream an episode or two ago. This and the previous generation seem to be entirely convinced that the cutie mark defines the pony. Translating this over it would be the same as if enough people tell you that your meant to be a plumber you HAVE to be one even if you don’t want to be. I think that’s what the more overall arc will be willing to tell us later is that YOU as a person are in charge of your own destiny, not a cutie mark or what others THINK you should be. Maybe the breaking of that society norm is where the writing team is heading? All it takes is one generation fed up with something (I point to Woodstock, and more recently, the riots across the US as proof) to trigger a change. What do you all think? Comment below 🙂

So after his back story is spilled Troubleshoes is caught by the posse that seems to believe he kidnapped the three girls and take him to jail. What I also find equally disturbing is that the law enforcement quickly assumes the ill intent and DO NOT listen to the alleged victims, they quickly pass sentence and incarcerate our big ol’ unlucky guest star. This may be a subtle commentary on how the internet and social media quickly convict anyone of something without the facts, like we’ve seen so recently in other cases online. Thoughts?

Trp[ju

“Hey ya’ll, a buncha Fanboys gave this to me for Strongest Female in a Supporting Role Wearing Only a Hat”

Finally Act 3 kicks in and the girls realize that Troubleshoes isn’t looking at himself or his special talent the proper way and decide that if he ENJOYS the rodeo, he should entertain by being a clown in it! So as the time ticks down before the credits they break him out of jail (what? :P) and dress him up as a clown for the rodeo, and like a natural, he entertains everyone. In true “The Power is Yours!” fashion, the truth of who he is really shocks the audience and they all turn on him, almost to the point of a riot, but the CMC comes in and saves the day!

Clown

I think the lesson here is, when life hands you lemons…

The only thing they forgot to mention was they never were really kidnapped, which lands them the job of cleaning up the rodeo after it’s done. (and gives another display of ponies using everyday items as Applebloom uses a broom with her hooves instead of her teeth? Thank goodness, ponies using their mouths for everything was getting odd)

Broom

Faster my minions! Use that broom proper!

Overall, this episode gets a 3 from me. It feels rushed at the end, and honestly, it feels like it was phoned in. Nothing really awful happens, but the same, nothing moving happens like in previous ones this season. I think what this might be is a preparing story on one or ALL the girls getting their marks sometime soon. It exposes the audience to more of the CMC who previously had very little but fluff pieces themselves and only one or two before. I can’t wait to see if I’m right 🙂

Take care!

-Watchfire