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Season 8, Episodes 25 & 26: School Raze: Parts I & II

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Title: School Raze

 

Part I Synopsis: When the magic of Equestria mysteriously begins to fail, Twilight leads her friends on a quest for answers, leaving the School of Friendship open to attack from a dangerous mastermind.

 

Part II Synopsis: While Twilight and the rest of the Mane Six try to escape Tartarus, Cozy Glow furthers her plot to take over the School of Friendship with only Twilight's students and the Cutie Mark Crusaders to stop her!

 

Airs: Today at 11 A.M. on Discovery Family

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Too predictable and formulaic to be this self-serious. Actually pretty fun when it lightens up a little. Simplistic but admirable themes stated a bit too bluntly. Probably too many moving parts for its own good. The usual. This is more plausible than last year's finale, but it's also less empathetic. On the other hand, I did find it a bit more fun, and the much more inspired worldbuilding this year does give this year's finale an advantage. I still have my fingers crossed that one day this show will do something different for its finales, but until then they remain watchable but unexciting to me. Still, some specific points:

  •  I think the show's a bit naive in suggesting Neighsay would be convinced to change so quickly. Furthermore, I don't actually care that much about his change of heart, so nobody else seems to actually learn anything from this whole debacle. 
  • I still get a bit of a kick out of how overtly political this show is with regards to the Neighsay stuff. This is essentially about someone exploiting prejudice in order to gain power, and that's certainly territory I would never have expected from this show.
  • I think that's all stated a bit too directly to be more than mildly interesting, and it's also kinda rudimentary. More importantly, I don't really care about Neighsay, and aside from him this doesn't have much character development, and like almost every finale since season 4, the plot often gets in the way of opportunities for jokes. 
  • The Tartarus stuff is kind of a waste of time, but its sheer irrelevance actually allows it to be kinda fun and quirky. I mean, they wind up playing with Cerberus, and that's pretty cute, and there are some great Pinkie Pie moments here, as always. She was the bright spot in last year's finale, too. All of that kinda makes the student six stuff look flatter by comparison. Wish it added more to the show than the upteenth reiteration of the importance of friendship. 
  • I'm usually not that satisfied by spectacle in this show, but the Tree of Harmony scene was nice. It's a nice reminder that the tree, too, has learned a lot about friendship; for most of these characters, I just take that for granted to the point that I don't even care about it anymore, but the Tree is this weird, ancient, unknowable being, so that's actually kinda satisfying. 
  • Cozy Glow just seems too insincere to have the charisma of, say, Chrysalis, and I don't really care about Tirek as a character in and of himself. At first I did enjoy her general suspicious aura, but she's not as witty as this show's best villains. Really hoping that stinger at the end doesn't go anywhere. 
  • Got excited for a moment that Cadance might have a bigger part of this. Alas, it was not to be. :( 
  • Why are these six students the only ones who distrusted Cozy Glow? Were there no other non-ponies in the school?
  • The first few minutes are delightful; Twilight's anxiety is always fun, and seeing the others competently fill their jobs was nice as well. I wish we got more of that this season in a better context. This show really missed the opportunity to explore the main cast from a new angle. 
  • I want Pinkie Pie to knock on my door and offer me free pizza. 
  • Like last year's finale, this takes an eternity on setup. At least that setup isn't completely pointless this year. 

Score:
Entertainment: 5/10
 Characters: 7/10
Themes: 7/10
Story: 4/10
 Overall: 58/100

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I think the first half started off well, but was kind of rushed in the second half, though, looking back, it wasn't as bad here as it was in the Season 7 finale. I liked Tirek showing off his ego when he realizes that The Mane Six and Spike are trapped in Tartarus with seemingly no way out. Also, I really wish this season had more with the Student Six and Neighsay before Cozy Glow put her plan into action.

@Thrond Interesting point about the Tree Of Harmony. I think if they explained too much, it might go the way of Luna going all Nightmare Moon.

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2 hours ago, WaterPulse said:

@Thrond Interesting point about the Tree Of Harmony. I think if they explained too much, it might go the way of Luna going all Nightmare Moon.

What do you mean by this? 

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8 minutes ago, Thrond said:

What do you mean by this? 

When it showed what happened when Luna became Nightmare Moon at the start of Season 4, many viewers thought that the presentation was anti-climatic, with it appearing that NMM  was only banished about an hour or so later.

Now that I think about it, it was probably the execution itself rather than the attempt. I'm sorry, I'm just probably rambling about nothing.

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Overall the finale was pretty decent. There were some funny moments, from Starlight's sarcasm, to Rarity's "Woah", there were very light-hearted moments.  Also, it was nice to see Cadance there at the meeting as well.And I will say, that things really picked up in the 2nd and 3rd act of Part 1 and really picked up in the 2nd part. 

As far as Cozy Glow goes, as a villain, she was exactly what was needed.  A villain, that even in the moment was able to stay one step ahead, except when she disrespected the Tree of Harmony.Now as far as punishment, Some may agree with it and some will not.  But let's be honest, yes Starlight and Tempest did things that deserve a sentience to Pony Alcatraz. 

But question, did they attempt murder on several occasions and not give a darn, some will say "yes" and that's fine.  But were they willing to give friendship a second chance. The answer is yes. Especially when you understood their backstories.  But what about Cozy? 

Well let's see, she mocked what the elements were about, was going to let the Young Six and Starlight die, heck she was already technically killing Starlight by having her kept in that orb, tricked the Mane 6 and Spike into traveling into Tatruas and trapping them there., Drained all the Magic from Equestria, then try to escape to another school to continue her plan, and through all that, not once did she give a flying F*** about anyone but herself. So yeah, I'd say she got what she deserved in the end.

Overall, again as I said, a pretty decent finale. What you say?

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I Love Cozy, she's my favorite villain in this show, because I'm weird like that, and I always love the craziest villains.

It didn't feel rushed in my opinion, I'm actually very impressed about how well they've handled it.

This season... I hated it... well as much as I can hate a season of mlp... and by that, I mean that it was a pretty decent season... anyway, that season was not the best and I was pretty disappointed but this finale has made up for it and it's my second favorite finale ever

I'm glad that they were able to introduce a new villain that far into the series and it didn't feel like they forced it 

Overall it was a pretty decent episode... 10/10 XD

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12 hours ago, WaterPulse said:

When it showed what happened when Luna became Nightmare Moon at the start of Season 4, many viewers thought that the presentation was anti-climatic, with it appearing that NMM  was only banished about an hour or so later.

Now that I think about it, it was probably the execution itself rather than the attempt. I'm sorry, I'm just probably rambling about nothing.

Oh, I get you. Yeah, the Nightmare Moon stuff was deeply unnecessary in that episode, but the issue is mostly the execution.

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Haven't read any of the reviews above and writing mine while watching the episodes.

 

I'm exited. So let's go.

 

Part 1:

 

"Twilight: Maybe you did your spell wrong. A few seconds later. Twilight: I didn't drop that book.

 

Starlight: Maybe you did the spell wrong."

 

Me: OHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

 

 

"The magic in this land will fail in three days."

 

Just don't play with the sun and moon and days won't pass. xD (i know that makes no sense)

 

Funny, when it started to rain, they're immediatly dry again as soon as they are under the tree.

 

I knew Cozy would become some kind of villain.

 

That face though.

 

abf8e78aaa95d2006e516482d1d6423f.png

 

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Part 2:

 

Wtf.

 

Friendship is power and power is goooooooood!

 

Number one cliche for a bad villain.

 

Where the hell was Chrysalis?

 

They better bring her back in S9 and give her an awkward redemption or bloody judgement day. Chrysalis is a villain i actually like who could have some deep motives. But i know. I'm expecting too much and i'm expecting ridiculous things.

 

Well. That was not what i expected from the finale. It wasn't completly awful but it wasn't good either.

 

S4 finale can't be beaten imo.

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I really like these episodes, but I'm confused about one thing. Why are these episode numbers 24 and 25? What happened to #26?

Anyways, I really like these episodes. Now, don't know about Y'all, I didn't see Cozy Glow as a villain. Still, she's not as good as Chrysalis. Chrysalis was a villain because she needed to feed her colony. With 3 episodes where she's a villain, she gets a lot of screen time. I'm getting off topic here, wanna talk about best MLP villain, go to Here.

Other than Neighsay's character ark and the tree of harmony recognizing that the student 6 can also represent the elements, these episodes were meh.

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10 minutes ago, Rainbow Swirl said:

I really like these episodes, but I'm confused about one thing. Why are these episode numbers 24 and 25? What happened to #26?

These are episodes 25 and 26.

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32 minutes ago, Rainbow Swirl said:

Chrysalis was a villain because she needed to feed her colony. With 3 episodes where she's a villain, she gets a lot of screen time.

 

*totally likes that and agrees with that*

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@PinkiePie97 @Rainbow Swirl

 

What is even going on with you two at this point? xD

 

Episode 1: School daze part 1

Episode 2: School daze part 2

Episode 3: The maud couple

Episode 4: Fake it 'till you make it

Episode 5: Grannies gone wild

Episode 6: Surf and/or turf

Episode 7: Horse play

Episode 8: The parent map

Episode 9: Non-complete clause

Episode 10: The break up break down

Episode 11: Molt down

Episode 12: Marks for effort

Episode 13: The mean 6

Episode 14: A matter of principles

Episode 15: The hearts warming club

Episode 16: Frienship university

Episode 17: The end in friend

Episode 18: Yakity-Sax

Episode 19: On the road to friendship

Episode 20: The washouts

Episode 21: A rockhoof and a hard place

Episode 22: What lies beneath

Episode 23: Sounds of silence

Episode 24: Father knows beast

Episode 25: School raze part 1

Episode 26: School raze part 2

 

All episodes got one topic to review them here (the two part episodes got one for both parts). 26 episodes and 24 review topics here. What is the problem? xD

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How's it going, everypony? So I saw the finale, yay! And here's what I think of it:

 

Okay, first of all, I have to say that I was surprised to discover that Neighsay is not actually the ultimate villain of this season as I expected. I mean, he wasn't always that much of a pleasure to observe but it was good to see that his mind can be changed too. I even gonna say that I was glad to see him leaving his fairly racist prejudices behind and embracing the idea of befriending other creatures in the end of the last episode.

Now, Cozy Glow.

 

You know what, before I carry on, I just want to give a big fat "THANK YOU, DAMMIT!" to every last member of fandom who went out of their way to spoil Cozy's agenda for me and others long before the time has come for finale to air. Maybe I am not quiet reasonable here and not taking into consideration that perhaps it was obvious enough for others to see right through her, but come on: we are all aware of leaks and early airings elsewhere outside U.S. Nopony knows how many ponies refused to wait and went on seeing episodes ahead of the schedule. With that information in mind it is hard to imagine that it was nothing more than a fine deduction or lucky guess. This character, I swear to Celestia, was next to impossible to look at with eyes and mind crystal clear in these last two episodes with all the pics and comments that managed to fly under the spoiler radars right into my face when I was checking out other pony stuff! UNBELIEVABLE!

Rambling is over now, thank you very much. Back on point.

Well well well, this character is a...an interesting case. A little filly. Who is the true villain of the season. That planned things long before the finale.

...and I am not fully sure how to feel about her.

She turned out to be a little power-hungry brat who trapped Mane 6 and Spike in Tartarus, incarcerated Glimmy in a magic bubble, nearly managed to rid Equestria of magic - all that so she could use Friendship as means to control. I have but one question: where did this megalomania of hers originate in her age? I would love to know what drew her to this life choice. But I suppose the writers decided to turn her into one of those characters. You know, tiny girls with that manestyle, that look all sweet and nice but in reality are rotten to the core. I once saw the Nostalgia Critic's review of Cats Don't Dance (but not the movie itself, so please let me know if it's worth seeing :)), which had such character for the main antagonist. Also, I heard that somepony similar was in Batman TAS. So yeah, that kind of character. It still felt slightly out of nowhere. And I thought that she was an agent of Neighsay. And OH MY LUNA, Glow must be really really as rotten and unsalvageable as the aforementioned CDD character, because she clearly didn't feel any remorse in the end and got imprisoned in Tartarus! Suits her right, if you ask moi. Also, it was kinda refreshing to see that the villain turned out to be not worthy of being redeemed this time around.

But what about Student 6? Well, not much to say here except that those grew on me a lot. I really grew to like those personalities and how they interact with one another. Different kinds that managed to establish a bond with one another - nothing but joy. And who thought that they would save the day. Sorry, but I am really proud of Student 6! :D

I do have to note though that Tree's interference in the crucial moment did feel like a deus-ex machina.

Tirek made another appearance, yay! And his new weakness is...PINKA! And wow, what a creep he is when he is all weak and old. Aaand that is pretty much all what I have to say about him :P

Mane 6? What was never broken stayed that way. And hey, Glow got them trapped in Tartarus with nearly no magic. It's a miracle that they manged to get out. Yes, they didn't get out in time but their merit is that they are the teachers of Student 6 who made their teachers proud by saving the day when they physically were not able to do so. Maybe somepony of you may think that they were once again shoved aside in favor of fresh character entries, but I don't think so. They have already proven themselves multiple times and I shall never change my mind on them. Add new characters, but keep old ones too. Sometimes new characters are needed to keep things fresh, but it doesn't mean that the already established ones should leave. They are never forgotten by us or writers. And I already said about their students saving the day, so here you go.

By the way, am I the only one who thought that Tartarus looks like just a gaint closet full of animals in cages? And I thought it was entire realm.

Also, CMC IMO could be used a bit more. I couldn't help but think that they got dumped after they got Student 6 out of captivity because their attempt to distract Glow proved to be dead on arrival.

 

And that's it, everypony. I wasn't expecting something ultra-grand from the finale so it didn't really disappointed me. It was good. 

 

Now whatever I'm gonna do when the hiatus is raging...

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Wow! I finally got a chance to see the finale, and it was pretty good. Cozy Glow was a surprising choice for a villain, but still a great one. It was kind of satisfying to see Neighsay being at the other end of the stick. He wasn't calling the shots anymore. It was a filly, which made it both funny and terrifying. But I do wonder about Cozy's backstory. I wonder what kind of events could have occurred in her short lifespan to have that kind of ideology. Is she an orphan, or do we yet have to see her parents? Will that be explained at all? Stuff like that. It was nice to have a villain who doesn't possess magic themselves. But I wonder how Tirek received the letters she sent. It was nice to see the centaur return after four seasons.

 

Anyway, the rest of the episode was fine. The scenes in Tartarus were entertaining. I'm always looking forward to Pinkie and her shenanigans. It was great to see the Student Six and CMC working together... until the CMC were trapped of course. I liked the Student Six being levitated when they retrieved the artifacts. The tree seemed to think of them as worthy of representing the Elements. 

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I enjoyed both episodes, and it was very interesting how it all played out. I am kind of surprised that instead of a chance at redemption and friendship, they sent a young filly on a one-way-ticket to pony hell. Anyhoo, I hope Cozy returns, she was a fun villain.

 

 

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Typical MLP season finale... Boring. Obnoxious... We've had a resentful ruler, a spirit of chaos, an evil emotional vampire queen, a magic eating monster, an enslaving tyrant from the past, an actual cult leader and all sorts of monsters as antagonists in this cartoon. This time, it's a child dreaming of... What else? Ruling the world. Ugh... This is why I still say that Nightmare Moon was the best villain in this cartoon. She wanted to be loved, recognized. Cozy Glow was goddamn cringe worth. She even had a crown made with adhesive tape. In fact, i don't know if it was she or Neighsay that was worse.

God, what a waste. I hate it when the cartoon does this. It's too worried trying to be all serious and self-important, with these big stakes, but doesn't have the grandiose to feel like it's something actually serious. It's a child!

I hope next season we learn that she was Chrysalis that wanted to be sent to Tartarus, or something.

Other than that, it wasn't that bad, for a season finale. I feel like the Mane Six were completely pointless, and so was everything else, other than explaining how the hell that kid managed to do what she did. Including the students. The whole mess could've been fixed by the Tree itself. The cartoon really needs to stop with these plots that require characters to be yanked out of the way so that the story can happen.

I remember when people used to say the Elements of Harmony where a big deus ex machina, when they actually weren't, but that is exactly what the writer did with the tree here. Since there was that episode about how it tested the students for their friendship, I suppose the idea is that they helped. At least I got the feeling that the school was fulfilling it's job of teaching friendship... But the whole thing felt somewhat rushed and unfocused.

I don't know... Maybe I need to see it again... It tried to wrap up the season, and it kinda did, but could've done it better.

 

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