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I have been watching the show since 2012. As I've heard more about the fandom, I started to believe that because they are analyzing the show, I had this logic that those who nitpick the show and discover the flaws are the ones who are right and that they say that no one should watch the show because it is actually, objectively a horrible show. Whereas for me, I believe that people like me who passively enjoy the show and see it through an innocent, childlike lens are the ones in the wrong because I would be labeled as a brainless drone and that I have no free will when it comes to being in this fandom. 

 

I always believed that my own analyzing skills regarding tv shows are garbage and if that's the case, people tell me that I should not enjoy anything at all if I don't analyze it thoroughly. But I can't help it. I've always seen things, including MLP in a lighthearted manner, in isolation. I get the notion that I shouldn't enjoy any form of media because they imperfect.

 

Am I wrong for viewing the show at all? Especially in a childlike manner?

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For me, I tend to consume media at a 'surface level' first. That does include pony. I try to watch the show without looking for root causes of why an episode or moment works (or doesn't). If I am so inclined after viewing, I'll contemplate why I personally enjoyed or didnt enjoy the episode, which is a form of analysis (of both the show and myself). 

 

There is no 'right way' to watch a show. Though an argument can be made on a best practice for presenting an analysis of it. There is a quote I love regarding authorial intent in literature that states "..the birth of the reader must be at the expense of the death of the author". That sums up my view.

 

Watch the show in a way that makes your feel more enjoyment. Not just pony, but almost everything out there. If that means that you don't do a critical analysis, more power to you!

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I analyze some things in the show, but it's never get too serious, MLP is a "children show" after all, even if adult can enjoy it, it's main target is little girl. If i want to really analyze the story of somethings, i play Metal Gear, but i'm not watching mlp for this.

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I have a tendency to analyze while I'm watching, but my analysis is more technical than content-oriented.  I do like to catch (on the fly, if possible) all the references and stuff that the staff sneak in.

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I usually watch a show as is, at first.  Then I watch it a second time so it can sink in better.  The second time I'll start analyzing things and critiquing things that I think could have been done better.  And later in future episodes or even watching a rerun of an old episode I'll remember previous analyzations and try to connect all the dots.

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After all these barrages of extreme spitting on the episodes in the first half of Season 6, it's left me traumatized because of all the negativity and i haven't watched the other episodes yet because I'm still too scared to even see that the rest will just be hate and flak again and I'm too helpless to do anything about it.

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I'm just here for the ponies. I don't really care what anyone in the fandom thinks the show is or isn't. As long as I enjoy it, it really doesn't matter.

I never really got the whole "analysis" thing for pony. This has never been a super deep story driven world with strict canon and hidden meanings. Analyzing it seems pointless. There are plenty of other things out there with dictionaries worth of lore and information to dive into. Pony just isn't that. I swear 90% of the videos out there just make something up or project their fanon into it to try to make it canon.

Follow the analyzers that make it fun imo.

 

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4 minutes ago, Sethisto said:

I'm just here for the ponies. I don't really care what anyone in the fandom thinks the show is or isn't. As long as I enjoy it, it really doesn't matter.

I never really got the whole "analysis" thing for pony. This has never been a super deep story driven world with strict canon and hidden meanings. Analyzing it seems pointless. There are plenty of other things out there with dictionaries worth of lore and information to dive into. Pony just isn't that. I swear 90% of the videos out there just make something up or project their fanon into it to try to make it canon.

Follow the analyzers that make it fun imo.

 

Huh. Never thought I'd hear from a big cheese like you.

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Don't let all the negative people spoil the show for you. I've still had a lot of fun with Season 6. Is it perfect? Nah, but I wouldn't say it's so flawed as to be unwatchable. (I mean, my least favorite episodes this season aren't terrible. They're just average.) Second half has already had two more episodes that were good for Spike. (One with him as focus and another where he was support.)

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Although I enjoy watching some of the analysts, especially the more humorous ones, I personally don't try to look too hard into it. I am probably far more forgiving than the more serious analysts, my favorite Princess is Cadance and my favorite villain is King Sombra after all. So in general I don't really do any analysis at all, I just sit down and enjoy the ride.

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To add to this, have any of you ever heard of DarkQiviut? Personally and frankly, I hate this guy. On one hand he claims to be extremely vocal and opinionated when I can't help but think that he is always speaking the truth about episodes and that he's always correct. On the other hand, I feel like living in a tyranny underneath him. He makes me feel like my opinions are completely worthless and that there is such thing as an objectivity about the show and his nitpicking comes across as being excessively tiring and unnecessary to the point where he seems arrogant and pushy to me. 

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Show analysts are shills.

 

If you like it, you like it. You don't need someone to sell you why, and you don't need a reason as to why. And you don't need to sell why you like it either.

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of course, there are good and numerous exceptions

 

but the analysis community is just utter cancer at times, shoving up opinions into other's throats and basically overanalyzing the hell out of such episode

i wont mind if you write a 70 paragraph long analysis, you do you bruh

 

but some people are taking it a tad bit too far aye

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On 28/08/2016 at 1:12 AM, newworld said:

Am I wrong for viewing the show at all? Especially in a childlike manner?

Nope.

 

TL;DR: I've been wanting to talk at-length about these kinds of questions for a long time, and got a tad carried away. It was all hammered out late at night, so hopefully its coherent. In summary, you can't say that anything is objectively good or bad because this can't be measured by any metric which we're capable of discovering. The best we can do is make judgements based on what seems intuitively right. Enjoy what you like and be merry! :awesomedash:

 

If I were an analyst, and wanted to establish you were wrong for liking the show, I'd have to do three things: Firstly, I'd have to make a series of observations about the show which are objectively true. Secondly, I'd have to link these observations to a concept of "objectively true" which is also provably correct. Finally, I'd have to establish that enjoying something that is "objectively bad" is morally wrong. Here are some problems with each of those steps:

 

1.) We could probably agree that some facts about MLP can be observed objectively. For example, most of us would probably agree, "in the cartoon, Fluttershy's fur is yellow" is an objectively true statement. Similarly, you could probably argue that some statements of contradiction like "event A contradicts what was previously established in dialogue B" are objectively true. However, the observations which people will point to as markers of poor quality are very diverse - and more importantly, most of them involve quite a lot of subjective interpretation.

 

For instance, take the claim that somepony's actions are 'out of character'. In order to establish this as an objective observation, you'd have to establish precisely what the 'correct' interpretation of that character is. Then, you'd have to establish why the action in question transgressed the 'correct' interpretation of the character. Finally, you'd also have to establish that the inconsistency was not justified by the relevant context. Are you starting to see some problems with this? For example, how do we know what the 'correct' interpretation of a character is? Sure, you could base that on a series of observations, but then again, a lot of those sub-observations aren't going to be objective either. If we claim that a character is kind, what makes an action kind in the first place? How many actions of kindness do we need to observe because we can say "kindness" is a fundamental part of the character? If we do establish that a character is kind, how far is the context allowed to push them before they're allowed to act unkindly without being out of character? Different people will give different answers to these questions, and that's really my point - how do you establish that any one of those answers is more correct than any another?

 

The observations we use as a basis for judgements of quality are pretty much what we see as 'intuitively correct'. Even if they contain some objective elements, much of it is still subjective at heart.

 

2.) Putting all that aside, let's assume we can establish that all our observations are 'objectively true'. Now, we need to establish that these observations make the work in question objectively bad. Here is a list of some questions people often ask to decide what objectively good/bad means:

  • Does the work adhere to some set of technical criteria relevant to the medium (literature, film, etc)?
  • Does the work adhere to a set of technical criteria relevant to characterisation, musical composition or some other specific component?
  • Does the work realise the author's intent?
  • Did the work satisfy its fanbase?
  • Did the work satisfy the most dedicated of its fanbase?
  • Was the work commercially successful?
  • Does the work promote good moral values?
  • Did the production staff engage in morally questionable practices during or after the work's production? (e.g insufficient wages to staff or on-disc DLC)
  • Are members of the production staff involved in morally questionable practices which aren't directly related to the work (e.g is the director is a neo-nazi, etc) 

There are lots of bones you could pick with each line of thinking. For the sake of not making this post longer than it already is, I won't go into the problems with each one. Instead, I'd like to highlight two issues - 'inconsistency across works' and 'quantification'. Observing the opinions of specific individuals, you'll notice very quickly that we don't judge each work according to the same criteria. Each time we decide what 'objectively good/bad' means in relation to a work, we shove a selection of the principles above into an incoherent framework to suit our conclusion. What this suggests is that even if there's some perfect standard for 'objectively good', I'm not convinced that we're capable of discovering what it is and applying it consistently.

 

This is compounded by the issue of quantification: when we speak about what makes a specific work good or bad, we think about the relevant components as if they formed a mathematical equation. That is, that the quality of a work equals the 'bad parts' subtracted from the 'good parts'. Even if we could establish that some things are objectively good and some are objectively bad, that says nothing about the degree to which they are objectively good or objectively bad. Given that we already struggle with the first part, I can't think of any reasonable metric that could be used to clarify the second part.

 

3.) Even if you assume that all your observations are right and align with a perfect standard of 'objective good', it's another leap entirely to assume that enjoying something "bad" makes you a bad person. On the rare occasion that I do see an argument like this, it usually takes one of two forms:

  • A.) By enjoying "objectively bad" media, you're stifling the creation of "objectively good" media: The first problem with this argument is that the extent to which people like something usually has little to do with whether or not more of it gets made. The primary motivator for large-scale projects is profit, and the number of people who bought something is not necessarily correlated with the number of people who actually enjoyed it (see: Final Fantasy XIII). The best you can do as an enthusiastic consumer is promote something, and that's an entirely separate activity from merely enjoying it.
  • B.) By enjoying works with objectively bad morals, you contribute to the spread of those morals and the subsequent decay of society/youth/cute puppies/ice cream vans/etc: Problems with the idea of 'objective morality' notwithstanding, you can pretty much object to this argument in the same way as the first one - how do you establish sufficient causality?

Both of these arguments also skip an essential step by assuming that "objectively good media" is inherently valuable and needs to be promoted above other things.

On 28/08/2016 at 3:10 PM, newworld said:

After all these barrages of extreme spitting on the episodes in the first half of Season 6, it's left me traumatized because of all the negativity and i haven't watched the other episodes yet because I'm still too scared to even see that the rest will just be hate and flak again and I'm too helpless to do anything about it.

I know the feeling - I feel like I've allowed other peoples' negativity to get to me lately as well. I know it's hard to do when someone seems like a prick, but try to treat opposing viewpoints as opportunities rather than something to beat you down. Instead of turning it into a question of right or wrong, try to empathise with where different people are coming from and think about how their perspectives relate to your own. 

3 hours ago, newworld said:

To add to this, have any of you ever heard of DarkQiviut? Personally and frankly, I hate this guy. On one hand he claims to be extremely vocal and opinionated when I can't help but think that he is always speaking the truth about episodes and that he's always correct. On the other hand, I feel like living in a tyranny underneath him. He makes me feel like my opinions are completely worthless and that there is such thing as an objectivity about the show and his nitpicking comes across as being excessively tiring and unnecessary to the point where he seems arrogant and pushy to me. 

I know all about Dark Qiviut, and I get where you're coming from with him. He says what he thinks and doesn't remotely apologise for it. To people like myself who lack self-confidence and have low self-esteem, that attitude can look extremely intimidating. Their bluntness and self-assurance makes you feel like you've been mentally 'shut down'. Consequently, you end up feeling marginalised, and you come to resent those sorts of people for marginalising you. Sometimes it can taint our view of the entire topic under discussion. I have the exact same problem with Lilly Peet and some other figureheads, even though I agree with them on 90% of things. 

 

Here's the thing about them though - their confidence has no bearing on whether or not they're right. And on top of that, we're all on the internet where it's very easy to misread a person's tone and intentions. An attitude like Qiviut's could indicate arrogance and hostility... but it could also indicate that he has a different communication style which we're misinterpreting negatively. While I'm not a big fan of arrogance or contrarianism (alongside their partner in crime, edgy misanthropy), you'll find people are far less confronting if you give them the benefit of the doubt. Like I said before - I know it's hard to look past your gut reaction, but sometimes when you can, you can actually end up broadening your horizons quite a bit.

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I think analysis can be a bit of good fun. Gives the fandom another facet of discussion to talk about. What ifs and filling in the blanks. Looking at situations that the show it's self might not be able to touch on fully, ect. There's a lot to talk about.

 

I do also think a fair few people take analysis far too seriously. The second people start reading theories as canon, or falling into Mat-Pat syndrome, like. Pretty much ruins the fun of it.

 

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There's nothing wrong with viewing this show in any manner, it's your viewing, enjoy it how you will.

As for analysts, they don't really force their opinions down people's throats, you don't have to watch, read or listen to their content, after all. Some can be enjoyable to watch in thier own right, and might even show you a new facet of the show to love. It's really up to you.

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If you feel analysts are too negative but you want to hear someones opinion on an episode then you should check out the numerous review channels.  Their are several which do a decent job while not being overly analytical or critical and are generally just fun to listen to or watch.

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