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Yeah, the CMC's antics really did get annoying and, "Oh my god do you have any clue?!" after a point. But Fluttershy outweighed that by a metric ton. And the cockatrice... very scary! And effectively used. That shot of Twilight as stone, and then the snail crawling across her face! :bloomgah:

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5 hours ago, ChB said:

@Nuke87654

You didn't give the Pilot Episode a B or better. I hate you!

 

Seriously, I appreciate your constructive analysis of "Friendship is Magic," even though I liked it very much. Maybe I'm a bit biased because it was the episode that made me love MLP and become a Brony, but that's my opinion. I agree with you on the character introduction aspect, and I definitely agree with you on the AJ honesty part. I guess I can concede to the villain stupidity analysis, which probably went over my head because I was enticed by the Everfree Forest setting and the "mystery" aspect of the Elements of Harmony. I didn't feel like the Elements of Harmony plot was rushed, but rather well-prepared and cleverly executed. I was all like "what's the point of all this laughing at spooky trees and encountering a random dragon who needs a mustache," until Twilight Sparkle explained it in a dramatic and borderline "detective smart" way. I was always into mystery and sci-fi, so I guess that's part of what made me love the climax. I'd give the episode a B+, if not an A. But of course, I respect your opinion and your rating.  

 

Cheers!     

 

Personally, I recommend the pilot to any neophyte.

 

Why?

 

For the same reason as Parody!Hitler (0:06-0:13):

 

 

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On 12/4/2016 at 0:37 PM, MasterSaruwatari said:

I will be starting my series once I finish this semester.

So I'm guessing once it hits the end of december? Happy that's coming soon.

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Today, I shall review the episode, 'The Show Stoppers', the eighteenth episode in the series and season 1 of FIM. It is written by Cindy Morrow and it's storyboard artists are Scott Jeralds, Francisco Avalos, and Jocelyn Thiessen doing the song segment in the show.

 

The original title for this episode was called 'No Talent Show', according to Cindy Morrow. Also, according to a fellow friend, during the song segment in the Talent Show, Scootaloo's Va, Madeline Peters had a difficult time trying to keep it straight throughout the song as she was laughing at just how silly the material was for the song number she sung.

 

The short story of the episode is that while the Cutie Mark Crusaders try to find their cutie marks, Ms. Cheerilee is hosting a talent show that draws their interest for it to where they decide to create a stage play for it in the hope to get their cutie marks.

 

 

Positives:

 

1. I like the montage scene in the episode. While it may have gone on for a good long three minutes or so of time, it was nice soft scene to showcase the cutie mark crusaders and their attempts to finding their cutie marks with a few funny moments in the montage scene. 

 

2. Their stage play at the talent show was so bad it's good. One thing that I will give credit to that they were definitely going for a song that was hitting the vibe that it was meant to be laughed for how bad it is. While I didn't thought it was especially funny but I will do so say that I was impressed with it and smirked at the feeling they were going for in the song as Ms. Peters would agree with. 

 

3. Their uniforms were cute and were probably the episode's lasting legacy. The stage uniforms the CMC's wore was not only cute and screamed 80's rock band looks but it grew popular enough that they were worn by the CMC's in the EQG movie Rainbow Rocks.

 

 

Negatives:

 

1. The CMCs stupidity in not knowing what their talents is prominently front and center here. This was one of the matters concerning their characters in Season one that  annoyed me especially was of how their idiocy in not figuring out their talents or what they enjoyed but here it seems the episode went out of it's way to play up that part of the CMCs ignorance via:

 

A. Showing them at how good they are at a certain talent such as Scootaloo with choreography and stunts, Applebloom with building and creating stuff, and Sweetie Belle with singing and song writing. 

 

B. Having them avoid doing the talent in their stage play they were shown to be good at or enjoy and instead having them do something else they want to do.

 

C. Despite how bad they are at it and the CMC's showing each other of how it gets done, it never crossed their minds that perhaps they should switch to that area of the stage play instead.

 

Doing this and showing it to the audience of how ignorant they are does nothing but annoy the audience of how we're shown of what their talents are, how they avoid doing it because they find it boring or want to do something else and to force problems to happen, or pure ignorance.

 

2. As a result, this episode also ruined the mystery on the CMC's likely cutie marks would be. When writing a story, one thing you must not do is reveal what you intend to do early on as it would not only kill alot of folk's interest in your story, ruin the fun part of mysteries that would shelter your story and add to it, but also just annoy readers for how ignorant the cast is at it. Here, The Show Stoppers commits that sin by revealing to the audience, in a season 1 episode, of what the cutie marks and their corresponding talents would most likely be. This is a very bad move to make as it will kill alot of folks interests in the CMC's arc as it now turns into a 'when will you give it to them' instead of the alluring mystery of what it could be that would help keep interest in that story arc.

 

To make matters worse on this, Twilight Sparkle seems to know what their talents would be but is keeping it to herself simply to let them figure it out. This line just only seems to highlight of how DHX is pretty much holding the conclusion to their cutie marks out for whenever they feel like it rather than do it on an organic flow.

 

There is a good reason why we like the CMC's individually and it is generally not because of their arc to finding their cutie marks.

 

3. The talents implied for the CMCs in the episode ended up being fruitless in the end. Perhaps the most damning of all the points in the episode upon inspection is of how pointless the implication was in the end. In season 5, when they do earn their cutie marks, it is not due to the talents implied in this episode but of helping others find their cutie marks. Thus what was the point of this episode to exist at all?

 

 

Conclusion: The Show Stoppers is one the worst episodes of Season 1 so far. With the CMC's finding their cutie marks arc not only spoiled for the audience to know what their talents would most likely be but also of how stupid they are of it and how pointless this episode would turn up in the end. Whatever moments of humor this episode had was no where near enough to make up for how bad my time was watching this episode.

 

Score: 2.5/10

 

Grade: F-

Edited by Nuke87654
Gave this episode a much wose score to make it Season one's worst episode.
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First time stopping here. Loved your analysis, so I ended up reading the whole thread. Took a while but it was totally worth it. You remarked a few things that either I didn't noticed while watching the episodes, or I simply didn't care enough to give the proper attention. Anyways, this is really interesting! I will keep and eye on this thread from now on!

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On 12/6/2016 at 1:59 PM, Jederick said:

First time stopping here. Loved your analysis, so I ended up reading the whole thread. Took a while but it was totally worth it. You remarked a few things that either I didn't noticed while watching the episodes, or I simply didn't care enough to give the proper attention. Anyways, this is really interesting! I will keep and eye on this thread from now on!

Thank you so much and I'm happy to have entertained and pleased you. May I continue to do that for your sake and to attract more here.

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On 12/6/2016 at 3:33 PM, RK_Striker_JK_5 said:

I haven't been able to sit through the entirety of the musical number. :P And yeah, them ignoring what they like to do just screams 'forced problems'.

Aye, and I agree there too, @RK_Striker_JK_5

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Today I shall review the episode the nineteenth episode of season 1 and Friendship is magic in 'A Dog and Pony show'. It is written by Amy Keating Rogers with the storyboard artists being Mike West and Sherann Johnson.

 

Now a bit of a history lesson for you folks to know, the episode title 'A Dog and Pony Show', is originally a nineteenth century term for a small travelling circus that performs their shows in rural areas in the U.S which now the term means an over staged performance. This term is usually connote with disdain  and failure to appreciate the message being displayed by the performance. Also, the plot of this episode seems to have been inspired from the O Henry tale 'Ransom of the Red Thief' where the culprits ended up paying the family back to take their unruly and misbehaving brat away for the sake of their sanity. An interesting error unique to Itunes version of it is that according to one of the show's directors, Jayson Thiessen, that they had gotten an older draft version of the episode that was never meant to be aired over the final version. This would have errors such as Fluttershy and Rainbow Dash not appearing alongside the mares at the bottom of the hole and Twilight's harness in this version being flung off instead of being kept on in the final version. Not only is this version unfixed still for Itunes 1080p version, but it even has received international airings too, netflix version, and even in the Australian volume 4 dvd release of the show.

 

Your terse summary here folks is that in an attempt to gather as many different gems as needed for her latest client in Sapphire Shores, Rarity brings Spike along to help her dig up for some gems.

 

Positives:

 

1. Sapphire Shores first appears in this episode and helps establish the pop culture element in FIM, and would also play a minor recurring role too later in the series. Of note, making her first appearance in the series is the Beyonce inspired pony, Sapphire Shores. Here in this episode, her role would be to jump start the plot via offering Rarity a commission for her to do a number of gem embedded outfits which would prompt Rarity to go and find more gems to meet that commission. While her role in the series for the most part is mainly to act in a recurring role or so whenever an episode calls for her appearance or mention, for the most part I do like how she is portrayed and considering her role pretty much establishes pop culture in FIM single handily, I'd say her creation and involvement in the show has turned up good here in Dog and Pony Show. 

 

2. This episode also can be considered the first to really make a point and theme of Spike's infatuation with Rarity. While past episodes may have had Spike's puppy love with Rarity before, this the first episode in the series where it evolves into something bigger than a side not to Spike's character. Here, not only does he manage to override his innate dragon greed to eat a delicious gem for Rarity's sake, but here it takes off to where it plays as a character trait for him in the episode as he not only is inspired to commit any attempts to save her, even at his own expense such as sacrificing a gem, imagining himself as an older and buff bipedal knight, but even have himself a moment of knight metaphor when he rode on Twilight as he charged at the diamond dogs to save Rarity. This episode does well to make a minor trait of Spike from the series pilot into something bigger for him and his character in A Dog and Pony Show.

 

3. It should also be given credit for helping to establish that 'dragon greed' moment too. While it played a relatively minor role here, we did saw a moment of Spike showing off his 'Dragon greed' when he saw a gem and drooled for it till Rarity admonished him for it. This is another trait in Spike that would play a bigger role in the later part of the series too. 

 

4. Rarity's time and scene with the Diamond Dogs is one of her finest moments of comedy on the show yet. One of my favorite humor scenes in the whole series was during Rarity's capture with the Diamond Dogs, they would try to force her to locate and dig up diamonds for them as their captured slave. Rarity would have none of it as she chose to enact one of the most masterful trolling jobs ever seen on the show. She would proceed to whine, cry, complain, and just in general being an unruly pony just to annoy the Diamond Dogs until they sought anyway to have her stop complaining such as doing as she bids or even sending her back to the ponies to be rid of her when they had enough. The whole segment between Rarity and the Diamond Dogs is so funny that it still remains in my personal opinion one of the show's finer moments of comedy. This is further augmented by the hilarious portrayals of Rarity being held captive by the Diamond Dogs by how the remane five and Spike imagine so.

 

 

Negatives:

 

1. Once inside the Diamond Dog's lair, they had a point of contrivance where Twilight had to be told by Spike that she can copy Rarity's short range spell to find gems, but also they somehow believe that Rarity would be at the place with the most diamonds despite holding no evidence that's where they'll take her first, the place they're going to would be even the largest, and yet somehow they find it soon after. Considering the location they are in where they are in a huge sprawling cavern system which none of them have any experience or know how to travel through it other than a gem finding spell that should not be reliable at all considering how short range the spell is, how huge their environment is, how it is designed, and yet somehow find the exact location they needed to be to find Rarity, this part of the episode was nothing but forced favorable resolution for how this plot point played out for them. 

 

2. The Diamond Dogs themselves are a miss in terms of endearment and design. I did not like the new creatures A Dog and Pony Show had introduced in the Diamond Dogs. While their base as subterranean creatures seeking for gems to horde is itself a good design to base on, however for the rest it just comes off bad for em. Those would include the negative masculine portrayals they gave onto them and their annoying voices. It seems also that DHX also wants to pretend they don't exist either considering how the Diamond Dogs have not appeared on the show since this episode save for EQG counterpart cameos. 

 

3. The episode's lesson of 'Just because they're a lady doesn't mean they can't defend themselves,' comes off as pointless, preachy, and tacked on. One problem that I was told and seen in the episode was of how the lesson of the episode can be best described as 'A  woman can defend herself fine,' which while itself not a bad lesson to follow on it's own, but considering how this series is essentially several mares doing friendship lessons and kicking ass and taking names on the side, this lesson not only comes off as really pointless as we know girls can kick ass and do fine here in this series, we don't need a lesson about it but also preachy too.

 

Conclusion: A Dog and Pony Show is a hilarious episode due to the good comedy skits and writing for Rarity and the Diamond Dogs together, but this episode also adds some good long term developments in Spike's development and infaturation with Rarity, and Sapphire Shores role in the series too. However, thanks to a preachy lesson, a major contrived plot point, and a missed opportunity to make the Diamond Dogs endearing make this episode rather average for me.

 

Score: 7.5/10

 

Grade: C

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Overall, I love this episode and consider it to be one of the highlights of the series. "THIS IS WHHIIININNNGGG!" is still one of those laugh-out-loud moments for me. And I don't mind the lesson. Rarity is the 'girliest' of them, so seeing her being able to manage fine is just a positive for me.

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I always considered this episode's lesson more like a way of justifying/trying to make Rarity's character look good rather than a friendship lesson. They just wanted to make us all know that Rarity was not gonna represent the trope she, well, seemed to be representing.

 

Side note, I always thought Sapphire Shores was a Katty Perry expy rather than a Beyonce (but I know nothing about pop culture, so yeah xD).

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4 hours ago, RK_Striker_JK_5 said:

Overall, I love this episode and consider it to be one of the highlights of the series. "THIS IS WHHIIININNNGGG!" is still one of those laugh-out-loud moments for me. And I don't mind the lesson. Rarity is the 'girliest' of them, so seeing her being able to manage fine is just a positive for me.

 

I agree the humor is still great here. As for the lesson, I just feel that it was tacked on and of how for the most part even for the 'girliest' of them all, she still had shown some fighting skills such as fighting off the manticore and she was never in a spot where she was a damsel in distress or so in S1. Making a big deal of it now here to speak about it here came off more as a moment to try to tell the audience of how ladies aren't weak or so via a mouthpiece, especially considering of Faust's beliefs on the matter.

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4 hours ago, Jederick said:

I always considered this episode's lesson more like a way of justifying/trying to make Rarity's character look good rather than a friendship lesson. They just wanted to make us all know that Rarity was not gonna represent the trope she, well, seemed to be representing.

 

Side note, I always thought Sapphire Shores was a Katty Perry expy rather than a Beyonce (but I know nothing about pop culture, so yeah xD).

Aye, though technically she represents the fashion minded girl trope, just that they made her very well and have her focus more on being a creator for fashion rather than don whatever is the latest and most popular at the time.

 

Ah I see, I felt it was more beyonce considering her speech and mannerisms along with the style she's famed for in her dancing and outfits and such. 

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Green isn't your color is the twentieth episode of Season 1 and series of Friendship is Magic. It is written by Meghan McCarthy and it's storyboard artists are Tom Sales and Sam To.

 

In the art gallery of photos showing of the many poses of model Fluttershy, on the furthest right, the photo of fluttershy there is in fact a modified version of an original concept art for Fluttershy, who originally was named Posey from G1 by Lauren Faust.

 

Your summary here is that after a famed model photographer, Photo Finish, finds her newest model in Fluttershy at Rarity's expense, despite her own jealousy for Fluttershy's success, Rarity pushes for Fluttershy to continue her path of success as a model with her blessing despite Fluttershy's own issues with being a model unbeknownst to Rarity. 

 

Positives:

 

1. Photo Finish is an excellent one shot character. The german accented model photographing pony, Photo Finish, is a rather awesome one shot character. She was eccentric in her speech and mannerisms as she seemed to like to a short pause at the end of her sentences at some moments for dramatics before she commits an action, like to be carried and pampered like the star she is by her minions, is over the top with photography, but yet is restrained by a german style need of perfection in her works to where seeks for the best moment for her and will alter and change stuff in order to attain that mood she's feeling and feels the photograph needs most of all.

 

At the same time, she does hold a bit of a dark side to her that I'll note here. As noted, she had said her original intention to coming to Rarity's boutique was to take photographs of the dresses she had and boutique itself.

 

Rarity: She was so impressed that she wants to take some pictures of my shop featuring some of my clothes!

 

And she also requested Rarity to include a model for her dresses too. 

 

Rarity: But I'm going to need somepony fabulous to model for me. Somepony with beauty. Somepony with grace. Somepony... like you?

 

When Photo Finish does arrive, instead of taking pictures of anywhere else in the boutique or other clothes. She only took photos of Fluttershy modeling and soon after leaves for which she declares that she has found her latest star and asks them to bring her to the park tomorrow.

 

Photo Finish: Yes. Really. And I, Photo Finish, am going to help her to shine all over Eqvestria. Tomorrow, a photo shoot in ze park. [pause] I go!

 

Than once she does arrive, she takes over and declares that not only she had no intention of promoting Rarity to be the next fashionista star but instead make Fluttershy her next top model star instead.

 

Seeing and hearing those words for her and how she goes all in making Fluttershy a star but yet at the same time, when Fluttershy purposefully tried to fail, she was quick to declare she made a mistake and dump Fluttershy at a whim. 

 

All of this shows to me that Photo Finish may have actually done that to Rarity to dupe her into believing she'll promote her when in reality she is trying to find herself a model star for herself so she can rise instead. This is not only pretty devious of her, but at the same time really shows off at how Photo Finish could make a surprisingly good villain for folks and is even one herself if such intentions were true.

 

Either way, Photo Finish's mannerisms alone would make her a memorable character, let alone the possible villainous tendencies she may have.

 

 

2. The story between Rarity and Fluttershy is not only relatable, but it is also extremely well done as a tale between of how you shouldn't keep your true feelings on the matter a secret. Here we are given a fantastic story between Rarity and Fluttershy where we see that Rarity despite her frustration and feeling genuinely hurt at how Photo Finish had chosen Fluttershy over her to promote is doing all she can to help Fluttershy rise to the top despite Fluttershy's own desire to avoid the spotlight but wishes to please Rarity's desire too. This would result in Fluttershy and Rarity hiding their true feelings on the matter as neither wanted to hurt each other as they thought or appear ungrateful for each other's well being. 

 

Throughout the story, we see Rarity trying to cope with Fluttershy's popularity done at her expense which she admits is bothering immensely to Twilight but doesn't wish to spoil it to her:

 

Rarity: I know, I know. And I should be happy for her, but instead I'm just... jealous! Oh, please promise you won't tell her I feel this way. Please, please, pleasepleaseplease!

 

At the same time, Fluttershy hates the spotlight and wishes to be away from it and the huge crowd of fans but doesn't wish to upset Rarity who had to sacrifice her own happiness for her in such case in order for her to go on. 

 

Fluttershy: I don't like being a model. No, I hate being a model. All this attention is awful, just awful. And I'm only doing it because Rarity told me I must. I must! I must! [sigh] I must...

 

This would result in Twilight trying to keep the secrets between the two for which I will explain more below.


Soon enough, Rarity and Fluttershy decide to take matters into their own hooves in order to help their friend out in what they believe they should.

 

Fluttershy would have Twilight's magic to purposefully make her fail on stage so she can become so hated that she would be cast out of the modeling world for it. It was all according to plan until Rarity saw her friend in trouble and without realizing Fluttershy's true intention, she hailed bravo and congratulating her 'bold attitude on stage' for which other observers took a liking to Rarity's outfit and decided that since she's hailing Fluttershy's performance that perhaps they can too which allowed Fluttershy to be even more popular than ever much to their chagrin. 

 

Finally, after they meet with each other at last, they finally break their secrets out and reveal how neither really like the arrangement of Fluttershy being a model. This would lead to both being happy about how they both feel about the situation and thus it became an easy decision for Fluttershy to quit being a model.

 

I really enjoyed this tale woven here as not only was it extremely relatable of how we often would hide our true feelings from our friends on a certain matter in order to not displease them. While it may not always end in a happy outcome, sometimes there are certain situations where in the end, spilling our true emotions on the matter would help promote a more stable and better relationship as we aren't put into a spot that is troubling for both sides to do. We really need more Rarishy episodes.

 

 

3. I really enjoyed the humor given here in the episode too. This episode is also especially funny for it's many comedy moments from all the character involved. From Spike's one sided crush on Rarity:

 

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Him ignoring the pain from getting stepped on from Rarity's ecstatic jumpings as it's from his crush.

 

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Rarity's tsundere face showing. 

 

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Rarity proving she is a marshmallow. 

 

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Twilight's first attempt at flying with her hoof wings.

 

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Fluttershy blew a house down with that scream.

 

There were many moments here in the episode I found funny to my humor values.

 

 

Negatives:

1. The side plot of the episode is on the weak side for a couple of reasons. Away from the main plot however, we're given the side plot between Twilight trying to keep secrets from her friends about Spike's crush for Rarity and of them in between or else from Pinkie Pie. There were problems in it in the form of:

 

A. Twilight's role felt shoehorned in. Other than provide a magic telekinesis spell to mess Fluttershy's stage performance that she can do on her own without help, Twilight's role for the most part just felt like it was shoehorned in for the sake of providing her a role to do in S1. This was one of the seasons's biggest problems as they had to find a reason why she had to be involved even if she was really not needed or so. This episode highlights this as if you took Twilight out of it, the only thing that would be missing was her hearing Rarity and Fluttershy vent their frustrations out on Fluttershy's modeling career and to keep a dragged out gag of keeping secrets as long as she could. 

 

However, at one point, there was a point where not only Twilight's role could've been justified, but even provided a better lesson for the episode to give: If you know your friend's secrets that you know could help both or them out in some way, it's better to try to spill it instead of keeping it to yourself. But they avoided giving that lesson and chose to give the one to not keep each other's true feelings on the situation from each other.

 

B. Pinkie Pie's role was repetitive and ended up being used as a crutch against Twilight to not reveal their secrets early on. Pinkie Pie I would say was Green isn't your color's biggest problem with the B plot as it seemed she did everything she could to stymie Twilight from telling Rarity and Fluttershy about how they actually felt about the modeling career of Fluttershy. While she did had her humor too, because it was done to prevent Twilight from revealing an important detail between Rarity and Fluttershy, it made Pinkie Pie come off more as a jerk in the end.

 

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Twilight: Um' Pinkie Pie, why do we have to keep a secret hidden when it could actually help both Fluttershy and Rarity out with each other's problem?

 

Pinkie Pie: Because...forever!!!

 

Conclusion: Green isn't your color is perhaps the Season's most underrated episode as despite how excellent the episode is you never quite hear it for best episodes of S1's list usually. With it's fantastic narration between Rarity and Fluttershy, it's excellent humor in it, and Photo Finish's characterization, Green isn't your Color easily mitigate's it's problematic B plot and how it missed a better lesson for the one it chose instead even if it was good as well.

 

Score: 9.0/10

 

Grade: B+

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Agreed. Pinkie's and Twilight's problem with the Pinkie Promise was added to delay the conclusion. We could get the same lesson without Pinkie intruding and threatening Twilight every five minutes. Speaking of which, is it just me or this was the first episode to introduce the so called "Pinkie Promise"?

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1 minute ago, Jederick said:

Agreed. Pinkie's and Twilight's problem with the Pinkie Promise was added to delay the conclusion. We could get the same lesson without Pinkie intruding and threatening Twilight every five minutes. Speaking of which, is it just me or this was the first episode to introduce the so called "Pinkie Promise"?

Agreed and very insightful there. Also yea it is the first episode to make mention of the Pinkie Promise I believe.

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Now we're going to do the episode 'Over a Barrel', the twenty first episode in the FIM series and season one. It is written by Dave Polsky and it's story board artists are Kenny Park and Lih Liau. 

 

Over a barrel is an idiom meaning to be in a helpless position where others are in control. During the episode's production, the crew had a native consultant to help them with the production of the episode to which they made revisions based on the notes he provided for them to amend in the episode. There's also an error to the spelling of Appleloosa where it was spelled as Appaloosa in the closed captions.

 

The short condensed story here is that while on their way to Appleloosa to plant one of AJ's prized Apple Trees, Bloomberg to be planted there, the mane 6 and Spike get caught up in a territorial dispute between the Buffalo herds that demand their sacred stampede grounds be given back cleared of the apple trees while the interloping Appleloosans refuse to give up their one source ensuring their survival in the deserts.

 

Positives:

 

1. The train ride scene at the intro and during the night was hilarious and one of the season's better humor scenes.  The episode got off to a great start due to the great humor on display in the episode such as:

 

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Rarity upset AJ is cheating on her for a tree. Don't worry Rarity, AJ won't be gentle with you. 

 

 

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Here's your popped kernel Rainbow dash!

 

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Fluttershy expresses her innate desire to be a tree as the girls talk about smoking weed with Huffy the Magic Dragon.

 

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And Rarity tells them all to be quiet as she tries to get her beauty sleep.

 

There are more spaced out in the episode to highlight one of the episode's strongest traits in it's humor, but I wanted to make special mention of how well the intro and train ride scene at night was set up in the comedy department.

 

 

2. We're introduced to our desert town of Appleloosa and Braeburn. 

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And here's everyone's favorite gay stallion in their fanfics, Braeburn introducing everyone to his home settlement of Appleloosa!

 

This is our first episode where we not only deal with a desert region in Equestria but one of it's major settlements that was set up there recently in Appleloosa. The theme and vibe given off here definitely give the old western towns in the U.S during the westward expansion days in the 19th century which helps to pin at least part of Equestrian culture to be inspired by americans along with other western styles. Building up more on the Equestrian lore and expanding it's world gives this episode a good spot for that.

 

 

3. Little Stongheart and the Buffalo Herds leave a good impact for their inspired reference from native american tribes and good design. 

 

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We really need her and the Buffalos back here.

 

As mentioned in the background info section of the episode, they had a native consultant to help them better portray the buffalos to their inspired allusion to the native americans. This new world building element paid off better than the Diamond Dogs as they're the one group of non pony groups I would love to return in the later episodes as they not only are interesting for their reference from but also of how friendly they are and their successful portrayal as a group feeling like they're trapped in a corner where they feel they have little choice but to force the Appleloosans out for their refusal to negotiate. It's a shame that we've only had a cameo since this episode as I really want them back and especially the main representing character in Little Strongheart as I feel she can hit it off better in her next role in the series.

 

Negatives:

 

1. Applejack's and Pinkie Pie's actions in the episode seemed forced to cause the dispute to reach to critical war levels for the narration's sake. One thing that I didn't like in the episode was of how AJ's behavior and reaction towards the suggestion they try to give the Appleloosan Apple Orchard to the Buffalo herd despite Braeburn being open to negotiate with them and how RD and Pinkie Pie were for it too. While I can understand her anger in how she wishes to ensure Bloomberg gets to be planted in the orchard and of kinship relation to the Appleloosans, her angry retort to their suggestions of negotiations and of how the orchard was originally the Buffalo's land would help lead to rising problems between the two groups, especially as she ends up actually supporting negotiation with the Buffalo's in the end. Talk about Flip flopping there, AJ. 

 

As for Pinkie Pie:

 

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Good reference to the western saloon dancers though.

 

She had good intentions here as she wanted to help soothe both sides down even though she failed. She had tried her best to help and so, but than her second attempt happened in which it felt like a forced gag to cause the war when it seemed the Buffalo leader Chief Thunderhooves was going to call the attack off was much worse as in comparison as this was just a blatant attempt to ignite the war for the sake of it.

 

 

2. Chief Thunderhooves suddenly changing his tune for peace when he ate delicious apple pie felt like an insult for how rather deadly and serious the conflict it and was referenced from was. Here's a thing about when referencing something that is a dark tale in human history or has a nefarious background to it, when you're making such reference you got to treat it with a level of respect if you plan on playing it straight instead of making a full on parody of it. 

 

Here it was apparent that what they tried to do was playing the tragic conflict between the U.S and Native Americans in the Americans westward expansion in the nineteenth century straight and serious with how they had gotten a consultant to help them portray the buffalo as respectfully as they could and how they were portrayed as more sympathetic too. Despite the use of the pies, it was okay as the education label Season 1 had prevented them from really showing outright violence other than light cartoon violence. But when Chief Thunderhooves was hit by the pie and acted in a very reminiscent scene of someone getting shot, he not only took a stuffing of the apple pie but also of how much he loved it. Suddenly the conflict gets resolved peacefully in which both sides get what they want all because Chief Thunderhooves ate a piece of apple pie and it completely sidesteps that the big reason why both sides were willing to go to war was because of a territorial dispute that gets resolved because they like Pie instead of something more practical such as path cleared for the buffalo herd to move through the apple orchard while the rest of the trees stays there to please both sides.

 

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 I do not like how the episode bypassed the land dispute the buffalos and appleloosans had, especially with how the conflict was alluded from. I will say is this that I feel that if this episode had aired in a later season of FIM, one where it no longer carried the education label to where it restricted alot of stuff the series could show in Season 1. To emphasize this, the censors gave Lauren Faust crap for rainbow dash saying 'egghead' to Twilight. With such restrictions place on them, I really feel they couldn't portray the episode the way it really needed to be shown as and believe that if this episode had aired in a later season, it would've been portrayed more seriously and better in the end instead of what we got.

 

Conclusion: Over a Barrel is a conflicting episode for me. While it had alot of great humor in the episode and I did enjoy the amount of world building and lore creation this episode created in the western town of Appleloosa and Braeburn, and the Buffalo herds and Little Strongheart that I do wish for their return, I was not as satisfied with it as I would like. With AJ's antagonistic behavior and Pinkie Pie's idiocy to help spurn the conflict up, and how forced and insulting the resolution to their conflict happened, I will say this episode is not really bad but it could've been better shown and written, especially if it were in a later part in the FIM series.

 

Score: 6.5/10

 

Grade: D

Edited by Nuke87654
Jederick explains and I agree with his stronger reasonings.
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Oh, the beginning of the "Tree Flutershy" joke. I loved that opening scene.

 

I personally fail to see why Pinkie's musical number was bad/wrong. Maybe its because in the latin american version they changed the lyrics, but I never understood why it would drive the Buffalos to attack the town. Twice.

The ending was...uh...

Like you said, it doesn't make sense that the whole battle ended because good ol' Chief ate an apple pie. Specially because it has nothing to do with the problem at hand. I mean, imagine this: The real reason why the Buffalos want the land its because they used to grow their food there. So now we have the problem "Buffalos wants their land back to plant their food, because they don't like apples". Okay, there' a problem there. Now, when the Chief tastes the apple pie, he realize that the ponies food is actually good and allow them to keep a good part of the land in exchange for a portion of the food. Sure, it would still be a really silly problem, but it would make much more sense that "We want the land because our ancestors used to stampeded there. Oh, nice apple pie. Welp, you have the land in exchange for food". There's no real connection between the land dispute problem and the apparent reason why they arrived at a solution.

 

On the other hand, I'll have to disagree with the first problem you mention. I feel that Pinkie Pies actions were true to her characters and didn't feel forced, at least the first time. Pinkie Pie...well, back in Season One she used to sing a song about everything. She was the "Singing Pony" instead of Fluttershy. So making an over-the-top musical number seems like something Pinkie would do to solve a problem. Now, the second time she made the same musical number was totally forced.

Applejack's a little bit more tricky, but then again, Applejack has always been very stubborn and prideful. Having Rainbow in the opposite team didn't help. But I can see your point there.

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Just now, Jederick said:

Oh, the beginning of the "Tree Flutershy" joke. I loved that opening scene.

 

I personally fail to see why Pinkie's musical number was bad/wrong. Maybe its because in the latin american version they changed the lyrics, but I never understood why it would drive the Buffalos to attack the town. Twice.

The ending was...uh...

Like you said, it doesn't make sense that the whole battle ended because good ol' Chief ate an apple pie. Specially because it has nothing to do with the problem at hand. I mean, imagine this: The real reason why the Buffalos want the land its because they used to grow their food there. So now we have the problem "Buffalos wants their land back to plant their food, because they don't like apples". Okay, there' a problem there. Now, when the Chief tastes the apple pie, he realize that the ponies food is actually good and allow them to keep a good part of the land in exchange for a portion of the food. Sure, it would still be a really silly problem, but it would make much more sense that "We want the land because our ancestors used to stampeded there. Oh, nice apple pie. Welp, you have the land in exchange for food". There's no real connection between the land dispute problem and the apparent reason why they arrived at a solution.

 

On the other hand, I'll have to disagree with the first problem you mention. I feel that Pinkie Pies actions were true to her characters and didn't feel forced, at least the first time. Pinkie Pie...well, back in Season One she used to sing a song about everything. She was the "Singing Pony" instead of Fluttershy. So making an over-the-top musical number seems like something Pinkie would do to solve a problem. Now, the second time she made the same musical number was totally forced.

Applejack's a little bit more tricky, but then again, Applejack has always been very stubborn and prideful. Having Rainbow in the opposite team didn't help. But I can see your point there.

I need to change that pinkie pie part, thank you and I'll mention it or so. Also you provided a better explanation for why the apple pie scene was bad and wrong. 

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1 hour ago, RK_Striker_JK_5 said:

I gotta be honest. Taking the ending into account, I daresay the old TV western Rawhide was more respectful to Native Americans than this episode.

Mhm, really has me wishing this episode aired later as I'd imagined they would've treated more respectfully if they hadn't had an educational label as the episode felt like post s1 episode forced to being a S1 episode.

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