Number95

Another MLP:FIM review thread

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On 2/15/2020 at 12:01 AM, Metemponychosis said:

You know what is sad? There was a story to be told around there somewhere about the great heroes passing down the torch to the next generation. But it's so goddamn confused about itself it makes me think there never really was anyone at the helm of this ship and it kept falling in the same waterfall every single season. I don't understand how one can do that.

I do think the show can be competent as most of its single episodes show, and then we have the two-part episodes. And "Magic Sheep". It didn't need to be more ambitious to be good, and those single episodes are still examples of that.

On 2/15/2020 at 12:01 AM, Metemponychosis said:

The fucking things were already just a big stick anyone could pick up and use thanks to that mentally challenged comic.

I haven't read the comics in a long time. Can you explain this?

On 2/15/2020 at 12:14 AM, Metemponychosis said:

Discord's defeat in  season two is exactly what I'm asking. WHEN LAUREN FAUST WAS STILL IN THE FUCKING SHOW!

I don't know if Lauren Faust sticking around would've helped the show if the first two seasons were anything to go by as the show still didn't play enough with the more interesting ideas it brought up. Then again, the show has been without her for almost its entire run that the show could easily turn out much differently than it is now, but there isn't too much of a point over wondering what could have been since they never happened and could just as easily turned out wasteful and clueless for any reason

On 2/15/2020 at 12:26 AM, WaterPulse said:

I have a lot of stuff to say about how Season 9 ended, but I'm not sure if Number has seen it yet.

I haven't seen the end of season 9 yet, and I still have a few episodes to go over before I get to that point. However, I won't be going through those episodes very quickly as rambling about MLP isn't a priority for me right now.

If you really want, you can express your thoughts anyways as I don't mind spoilers, though I'm not sure if there's much to spoil. I haven't read too much about the final episodes yet as I'm not terribly curious about how the show ends, and there's not much of a point in doing so as I know I would never be satisfied with how the show ended.

 

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2 hours ago, Number95 said:

I haven't read the comics in a long time. Can you explain this?

Was talking about the arc with the alternate dimension King Sombra. He just yanks the Elements and uses them as he sees fit.

2 hours ago, Number95 said:

I don't know if Lauren Faust sticking around would've helped the show if the first two seasons were anything to go by as the show still didn't play enough with the more interesting ideas it brought up. Then again, the show has been without her for almost its entire run that the show could easily turn out much differently than it is now, but there isn't too much of a point over wondering what could have been since they never happened and could just as easily turned out wasteful and clueless for any reason

I recent conversation I had on Reddit brought up that Lauren had the whole game plan for the show prepared in her head and when she left the team was kind of doing anything they thought they should with little unifying vision to speak of. It was said by Meghan McCarthy in an interview, apparently.

 

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On 2/15/2020 at 5:40 PM, Number95 said:

If you really want, you can express your thoughts anyways as I don't mind spoilers, though I'm not sure if there's much to spoil. I haven't read too much about the final episodes yet as I'm not terribly curious about how the show ends, and there's not much of a point in doing so as I know I would never be satisfied with how the show ended.

 

If that's the case, let me give it a generalized analysis.

If you haven't already guessed, the finale (outside the final episode, which basically serves as an epilogue) was rushed - IMO, it's probably the most rushed one since Season 6. One too many ideas crammed into it, with one of them not only not having enough build up, but was also recycled from a previous season.

And that's about it. I was expecting to write something more. Oh well.

Edited by WaterPulse
"Something about it seen"... and nothing else to add to that sentence fragment.
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18 hours ago, WaterPulse said:

If that's the case, let me give it a generalized analysis.

If you haven't already guessed, the finale (outside the final episode, which basically serves as an epilogue) was rushed - IMO, it's probably the most rushed one since Season 6. One too many ideas crammed into it, with one of them not only not having enough build up, but was also recycled from a previous season.

And that's about it. I was expecting to write something more. Oh well.

I understand what you mean. "Something about it seemed..." Vapid" is the word you're looking for. 

Near the end the cartoon tried so hard to tell a message about inclusivity that diversity lost its meaning.

The message about how everyone is important, not only Twilight was so heavy handed I'm left wondering what even is the point of her being put up as so important, which is exactly the problem with Celestia.

It's an utopia where the good guys have the right of way and other cultures are represented as quirky versions of the same thing instead of different cultures with different agendas. Kinda like someone made a movie were the christians and muslims united against the big bad evil guy by praying to Jesus. Surrounded by fanservice.

That sounds about right?

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1 hour ago, Metemponychosis said:

I understand what you mean. "Something about it seemed..." Vapid" is the word you're looking for. 

Near the end the cartoon tried so hard to tell a message about inclusivity that diversity lost its meaning.

The message about how everyone is important, not only Twilight was so heavy handed I'm left wondering what even is the point of her being put up as so important, which is exactly the problem with Celestia.

It's an utopia where the good guys have the right of way and other cultures are represented as quirky versions of the same thing instead of different cultures with different agendas. Kinda like someone made a movie were the christians and muslims united against the big bad evil guy by praying to Jesus. Surrounded by fanservice.

That sounds about right?

Yeah, it does sound right. Thank you for helping me put it into words.

Also, that McCarthy interview you mentioned kind of explains why the quest plots kind of went downhill in the show's second half. Not that it didn't have problems before that, but there was some sort of stability to it. I'm guessing it's due to Season 5 was wrapping up most of the last major plots that had originated in the start of the show - Luna getting over her demons, the CMC getting their Cutie Marks, Twilight solidifying her title as Princess of Friendship by stopping Tirek and Starlight - that when they tried to add new elements to it - including Throax becoming King, Flurry Heart's origin, the Pillars of Old Equestria, the School of Friendship - they didn't try to change their approach on telling these stories.

Edited by WaterPulse
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2 hours ago, Metemponychosis said:

The message about how everyone is important, not only Twilight was so heavy handed I'm left wondering what even is the point of her being put up as so important, which is exactly the problem with Celestia. 

That's also contradictory as Twilight (or at least Twilight and friends) are the most important characters, at least in Equestria. "The Cutie Re-Mark" essentially dug (another) grave for the show.

57 minutes ago, WaterPulse said:

I'm guessing it's due to Season 5 was wrapping up most of the last major plots that had originated in the start of the show - Luna getting over her demons, the CMC getting their Cutie Marks, Twilight solidifying her title as Princess of Friendship by stopping Tirek and Starlight - that when they tried to add new elements to it - including Throax becoming King, Flurry Heart's origin, the Pillars of Old Equestria, the School of Friendship - they didn't try to change their approach on telling these stories.

I'm gonna be petty and say that the bolded stuff were hardly done well. As in, what was the point of wrapping up those "arcs" if they were meaningless from the start? Yeah, Twilight was learning about friendship throughout the show, but that's hardly why she is just as good as (as in, better than) the other princesses.

When you mentioned those new elements, I'm guessing that they ended up getting hardly any exploration. I find it hard to believe that the School of Friendship wasn't used much in the show, but it's not like I'll ever watch the remaining episodes of season 8 and 9 to form my own opinion.

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There was something else about "The Beginning of the End" that also bugged me, but I didn't mention it earlier because I couldn't quite put my thoughts into words. When the state of Equestria worsened as Sombra's hold strengthened, the episode tried to convey that the main characters (especially Twilight) were in over their heads, and the end of the episode pretty much confirms as such since Twilight was given some actual preparation time before becoming the new ruler of Equestria. However, Equestria has been in some deep shit multiple times, so why was this case so bad compared to the others? Maybe it's because Twilight and friends were the ones who had to prove themselves capable, especially without additional help. It's true that even though Equestria has been in deep shit multiple times, that doesn't mean one should think less of this event. However, that leads to another problem I have.

The episode itself even noted that the Mane 6 don't ever get additional help against supervillains. Celestia, Luna, and Star Swirl stepping in late into the episode was supposed to confirm that the Mane 6 did in fact need help after all, but their participation (at least from the sisters) felt arbitrary instead as they finally decide to be of some use in this episode when they could have easily participated in other 2-part episodes.

I guess what I'm saying is that the episode's attempt to emphasize the gravity of the Mane 6 (or at least Twilight) being unprepared for bigger responsibilities and not yet ready to take the princesses' places felt hollow.

Hopefully, this makes some sense.

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Sparkle’s Seven

 

This episode may be marked as the show’s 200th episode, but the episode didn’t feel it was celebrating anything like “Slice of Life” did with the background characters (that I am admittedly indifferent to) resonating with viewers. Since the episode’s script had contributions from the main characters’ voice actresses, I’m guessing that the voice actresses wanted to do certain things with the characters they played for the show’s 200th episode whether it’s having characters involved in a zany heist, the zany plans the characters would come up with, or showing Spike’s relationship with Twilight Sparkle.

 

Spike goes to Twilight with a scroll from Shining Armor concerning a toy crown they both previously competed over as fillies. According to Twilight, their parents used a chart to record every time either of the siblings did something “special” over the course of a week, and the one with more stars got to wear the crown presumably for a week or until the other sibling won a new week. The chart has 24 boxes for each sibling, or maybe it’s 32 boxes if the parents decided to use the additional but small row. And they probably did as it seems pretty easy for Twilight or Shining Armor to get rewarded as telling a joke and even sharing an apple were already enough for acknowledgment. How would the parents know if either of them shared anything if the sharing (or anything else that was nice) happened way out of their sight? Sure, Twilight or Shining Armor could mention what they did, but taking advantage of the parents’ trust could also be easy if one of them was feeling too competitive. Spike mentions that he wanted to be part of the competition so he could feel like part of the family. Too bad he apparently never asked for his inclusion.

 

Shining Armor wants to meet at the Canterlot Castle for one final showdown for the toy crown, which looks more like it’s made of crumpled paper, but whatever. Oh, I mean “Celestia’s” Castle, as in the episode acts like she actually matters to the show. Twilight and Spike arrive at the castle, and they encounter SA as well as the alicorn sisters. I’ll admit that it’s nice seeing a bit more interaction between Twilight and SA as the show hardly did anything with SA despite having such an important connection to the main character. One might say that Twilight’s parents are also important in her life, but there was much more fanfare during SA’s introductory episode, and he didn’t do anything truly noteworthy in said episode. It’s also too bad Twilight’s relationship with a certain other major pony never got any real attention. Then again, considering how late this episode came in, I can’t say I ever understood the writers’ approach toward the show.

 

Celestia wants to amp up the castle’s security since Sombra was able to take over so easily back at the beginning of the season. Luna apparently disagreed with Celestia’s approach, and they both grimace at each other. However, I don’t like this scene nearly as much as I wanted to because their relationship never got explored, and no, their two focus episodes don’t count as they were hardly sufficient. That’s too bad as their expressions toward each other are so comically nasty and thus amusing. Celestia gave the task of amping up security to the Captain of the Guard, Shining Armor. I’ve read various comments online about the guards being useless against threats, so any improvements attempted will ultimately be for nothing. While that’s a fair point, there is a much bigger problem, which is the alicorn sisters being even more useless during a crisis. So, it’s not like Luna’s suggestion of the sisters amping up security themselves would have ever worked out.

 

Anyways, SA has (supposedly) greatly improved the castle’s security and challenges Twilight to try and break in, steal the crown, and then break out all without getting caught or setting off any kind of alarm SA has put in place. Celestia muses that this challenge will help expose the weak points in their security, and the weak points are obvious. The alicorn sisters and the guards are not the main characters, so they will always fail to repel any incoming threats no matter what they try. Having the Mane 6 or even just Starlight stand guard would already be a better form of defense. SA mentions getting shards of Chrysalis’s anti-magic throne to repel magical threats, and I wonder how Star Swirl was able to lift the shards with his own magic. Would having those shards also affect magical ponies inside the castle? What if Celestia or Luna wanted to cast a spell in case a threat somehow got past all that security? Then again, it’s not like anything they cast would ever work.

 

Twilight relays the “new and improved” Canterlot Castle security to her friends and concocts a plan to break through all of the obstacles SA has put up by making use of her friends’ main talents. Unfortunately for Twilight, Spike coughs up a letter from SA, who has apparently already figured out Twilight’s plans and presumably countermeasures for them. SA has hardly appeared in the show, so that would also mean he hardly or hasn’t interacted with Twilight’s friends on-screen. That means he only got to know Twilight’s friends off-screen, and while I’m not against characters learning certain things off-screen, using that excuse can feel like a bit of a cheat since it also becomes too easy to rely on that excuse. I mean, would showing him interact with some of Twilight’s friends really be too much to ask for? Oh wait, I forgot what kind of show this was. Twilight initially feels discouraged about trying to break into the Canterlot Castle, but Rarity steps in and suggests that each pony come up with their own method of breaking in while also suggesting that Twilight do nothing because those are all things that SA didn’t anticipate. If we had to be realistic here, no security will ever be truly perfect, but the good kinds of security would be able to handle various kinds of threats. In other words, it’s not like Shining Armor’s security would be tailored to handle only Twilight’s plans or moves that SA think the Mane 6 would likely resort to.

 

And now the new plan comes into action. AJ distracts the guards with a song as “Apple Chord”, who may or may not have been AJ’s alter ego at some point. Interestingly, the episode suggests that AJ made up the “Apple Chord” stuff as she was being shifty when questioned by RD. SA immediately recognizes AJ, but it looks like AJ’s plan to distract the guards still worked as she has still shifted much of their attention onto herself.

 

The castle also has giant fans to blow away anyone who tries flying to the castle. RD gives Fluttershy, Pinkie, and Spike a diagram of the new wind patterns around the castle and tells them where they should go. Okay, two things. First, the diagram of the wind patterns came from the Wonderbolts, who apparently figured out a way to get past those blowing fans, so shouldn’t SA have contacted them or some professional flyer about improving the security in the sky? And second, what if a powerful unicorn lifts herself with her own magic like Starlight did? Would the fans be able to blow her away? Actually, it might not even come to that as the unicorn could also disable the fans. At the very least, the castle itself does have some “anti-magic” rocks. Fluttershy and Spike are dropped off into the Canterlot Castle while Pinkie offers to keep watch from above. Pinkie actually wanted to keep watch from outer space at first, but that didn’t take as her hot-air balloon didn’t take too long to pop. This also got attention from the guards AJ was distracting, and she was consequently able to use this chance to grab one of the royal guard’s medal which is needed to open the doors inside the castle. It looks like none of those guards noticed that one of them was missing his medal.

 

Meanwhile, Rarity (in her outfit from “Rarity Investigates!”) and RD try going to a bar to ask for information about “secret passages” to Canterlot Castle. However, the bar is unexpectedly closed, but their trip wasn’t in vain as a pony who may or may not work there was able to point out a “secret passage” to the castle that happened to be close by. That’s not really a “secret passage” then, but if the guards know that, then they would know to amp up security around such a vulnerable area. Luna then conveniently appears with another guard to take over this next shift, and that new guard happens to be Fluttershy’s brother, Zephyr Breeze. He was kind of a loser and a chump in season 6, so I don’t know how he was able to get this job unless the writers are just acknowledging the fact that the guards suck so much that even someone like him gets to be one of them. I mean, they even made a dumbass joke about the alicorn sisters being useless throughout the show at the beginning of the season. However, the end of the episode will reveal why he was in that position. Seriously though, I could see Celestia being stupid enough to think that he would be good at the job. Rainbow Dash recalls Zephyr Breeze having a crush on her, and Rarity takes advantage of that fact to distract him. Rarity then takes down the bricks used to seal up the “secret passage”, and she and RD easily slip past Zephyr Breeze and get in.

 

Next, we cut to Spike and Fluttershy getting in to the throne room, who get in after Spike cuts a hole through the stained-glass window. Too bad the guards or the sisters didn’t come up with a plan to prevent that kind of break-in. The duo tries to approach the crown only to encounter a goose who awaken the other sleeping goose, and the duo ultimately fall into the trapdoor that SA set next to the crown. Too bad nobody came up with a plan to handle the geese in case they tried to holler. It also seems that the trapdoor only leads to an underground chamber. How is any of this supposed to help against magical threats who can just blast their way out or around?

 

Twilight becomes concerned as the new plan doesn’t appear to have worked out at all with Pinkie being unable to watch from above, AJ is no longer distracting the guards (looks like the guards grew bored of her performances), and the others haven’t returned with the crown. Twilight also says that she hasn’t heard anything from the ponies inside the castle, but phones, walkie-talkies, or anything similar don’t exist in their world, so what do they use for distant and immediate communication? I guess a letter from Spike might be one option, but that requires some paper. Otherwise, Rainbow Dash and Rarity don’t have any way to communicate with the other groups. Maybe this oversight was meant to show that this new plan was poorly thought out.

 

While Fluttershy and Spike are trapped underground, they are unexpectedly freed after RD pulls a lever. RD and Rarity are lost and have no idea how to navigate through the “secret passage” as RD was just pulling levers to see what would happen next, so these 4 characters eventually decide to return to the surface and formulate a new and better plan for breaking in. They tell Twilight that almost all parts of this new plan failed (AJ did get a guard’s medal), and Spike suggests going with Twilight’s original plan because that’s easier to work with.

 

And they do just that. Pinkie throws a party to distract the guards (those are some pretty terrible guards if they could get distracted so easily by a party or a performance), Rarity creates a guard costume (Twilight’s original plan had Rarity creating multiple guard costumes, but she must’ve realized that the other ponies have their own roles to play) and disguises herself to move among the guards more easily (too bad the guards also didn’t know that there shouldn’t be a guard that looks like her), Applejack bucks through some boulders blocking another “secret passage” with Maud’s help, and RD flies herself and Fluttershy through the blowing fans. Rarity, RD, and Fluttershy enter the throne room which sets off the geese before Fluttershy could calm them down, and that means SA will be aware of some intruders in the throne room. Spike, Twilight, and AJ finally arrive at the throne room through another “secret passage”, and everything seems to have gone too well. Twilight tries to take the crown, but SA as well as the alicorn sisters suddenly reveal themselves, much to Twilight’s disappointment. It looks like SA didn’t have any countermeasures to Twilight’s plans after all. He just wanted her to think that her plan worked so he could snatch the victory away from her at the very last moment to make his own victory taste even sweeter.

 

SA seems to have won this contest as Twilight can’t escape with the crown and without getting caught, and I honestly wonder if either of them would be desperate enough to resort to combat. Suddenly, Spike reveals that he has the crown as well as his cohort in his master plan, Luna, and she is even petting a goose “evilly” in this scene. I can’t help but wonder if the writers knew this would become a meme. I feel like I should be amused by this scene, but I’m indifferent. I guess I’m just too disappointed that this shit is one of the best things to come from Luna. I’m actually not against having this scene, but this scene only serves to remind me that the writers were never productive with Luna.

 

Spike then explains his plan to the other characters. He noticed that Luna was unhappy about Celestia disregarding her input, so he decided to work with Luna to take the crown for himself while also proving Luna’s point to Celestia about handling the security themselves. It turns out using Zephyr Breeze was part of Spike’s plan. Spike knew about Rarity and RD’s approach, so he tried to make sure that they would be able to get into the “secret passage” by bringing in a twat like him, and he knew the duo would get lost when trying to travel through the passage.  Essentially, Spike counted on almost every part of the new plan to fail (he even tore the hot-air balloon) during the first attempted break-in so Twilight would be forced to enact her original plan. Spike also knew that Shining Armor would want Twilight to think that she had won, so Luna teleported the crown to Spike while Shining Armor brags about thinking he had won. Talk about irony.

 

Celestia admits that she didn’t account for another weak point in SA’s security, which is handling a threat that is already in the castle itself. The alicorn sisters exchange some irritated smiles at each other, and I’m still indifferent about this. I’m sure the looks the sisters gave each other in the episode also became memes, and it’s too bad that’s all they amounted to.

 

Spike is ultimately crowned as the winner of the competition, and the ponies all end the episode with a group hug.

 

I honestly didn’t really care for this episode likely due to my lack of any genuine interest in the show. It doesn’t help that the episode kept reminding me about one of the stupider parts of the show. Showing the characters getting involved with a heist (and probably the main reason this episode was made) as well as some crazy plans is fine, but it’s too bad the crap about security serves as the backdrop of the episode. I bet there are viewers who poke fun at the royal guards being ineffective against threats, and that’s a fair point like I said earlier, but I will still reiterate the bigger problem. The episode ends with Luna being right and her input being necessary, but whatever point Luna wanted to make already has no weight. Episodes with major villains on a rampage are portrayed with genuine stakes, and the alicorn sisters have never been useful during any of those times, so why would/should they be useful now? I guess this just says more about the impression the show left on me, and it’s too bad this episode will be the only time Luna is ever competent. I should have just been focused only on the fact that the Mane 6 try to pull off some crazy plans only for another crazy plan to have been happening right under their noses, but I’m already taking some time to bitch about the stuff I don’t like about the show. I probably would have liked an episode like this more if it didn’t include the sisters or maybe anything about the security forces of Equestria. Better yet, the show could have avoided those problems, but excluding the sisters would be the better move at this point.

 

I suppose I can still mention some things episode handled well besides seeing how the Mane 6 approached their new plan and then seeing it go wrong, one of which is how Spike viewed his relationship not just with Twilight, but her family as well. We’ve seen their relationship with each other over the show being familial and professional, but the episode now gives more insight into the former. We know in season 1 that Twilight knew Spike since the latter’s birth, and now we get to see more of their childhood together. During the flashback showing the Sibling Supreme competition, Spike was shown drawing his own gold stars under the chart with Twilight and SA. Not only does he see himself as part of the family (and the others probably do as well), but it’s a bit more specific here as he also sees himself as their younger brother. He also expresses disappointment about them not apparently seeing him the same way during a conversation with Fluttershy. It would seem that Twilight and Shining Armor simply saw him as a family member, so it’s more of a generic position to them. Spike was even a bit hurt when Twilight unknowingly brushes him off after he called himself a little brother. Now, they fully acknowledge Spike as a child they spent time with and also grow up with as children fillies. Spike even showed how well he knew them as he knew the moves they would make and how to convince Twilight to use her original plan so they would ultimately and unwittingly carry out his own plan. It may be a bit late to show SA’s relationship and a bit more of Spike’s relationship with Twilight, but at least the show never fucked them up in the first place. On that note, I could also mention the episode giving some insight into Twilight and Shining Armor’s relationship. Their rivalry over the crown felt genuine as they both showed strong feelings toward it, and it’s nice to see that they would rather get along with each other than fight over a toy. I’ll even admit that there’s some amusement to seeing Twilight and SA acting a bit childish when talking about the crown to reinforce the idea that it meant a lot to them in the past. And at least it’s nice to see Shining Armor be somewhat competent even though we don’t get to see that more often. I wouldn’t be surprised if this was the only time he was somewhat competent. It’s a bit of a shame that the two didn’t get more interactions after this episode as the MLP wiki states that he doesn’t make a major appearance after this episode.

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This episode is the perfect example of the biggest problems with the cartoon.

1. By itself it is a great idea, but has the need to amp the stakes into something mindbogglingly stupid.

       If the Sisters and their palace wasn't involved, this would've been a great episode about brother and sister and sibling rivalry done right. The mediators for this whole thing should've been their parents and not the two dumb-asses-in-chief, which had zero relationship of any kind throughout the series with the two.

2. Characters do stupid shit the characters wouldn't be as stupid to do, such as turning the security of the Sisters palace into a game.

       Celestia has been ruling a nation for millennia and lets the two turn her own safety into a game for their friends. Shining Armor somehow became the captain of the Royal Guard and just did that. Luna needed to fire him and check Celestia in at the insane asylum instead of participating in that mess.

2. Evidences the lack of communication between the writing staff, which causes the cartoon to lack a single vision.

       I don't know if those defenses at least do anything in the following episode when the palace is attacked because I still haven't worked up the patience to watch the rest of the season after the first half, but I am pretty sure that it makes no difference in the end of the season. That mess was pointless in the end. Most important, it was asinine. Shining Armor was proofing the palace against his sister and friends. The whole mindset is wrong and makes no sense.

 

So, is this episode bad? No. It is great fun. I would've loved it if I didn't feel like tearing the writer's hair off. If this cartoon had made an effort to make Celestia at least seem like she's competent and knows what she is doing instead of winning by association with the main character, I would've found it hilarious that she was so sure it would be fine she would put her security into a game.

This is really all. I didn't find anything worth of note that was wrong in this episode. It's a great idea ruined by the idiotic writing I've come to expect whenever Celestia and Luna are involved. It was one of those moments of pandering that Luna's fans seem to love so much where she was right all along and Celestia was made into an idiot, again, because that is all the cartoon has ever managed to do with her.

Celestia's fans should thank whatever gods might exist that fanfiction is a thing.

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On 5/18/2020 at 2:02 AM, Metemponychosis said:

1. By itself it is a great idea, but has the need to amp the stakes into something mindbogglingly stupid.

       If the Sisters and their palace wasn't involved, this would've been a great episode about brother and sister and sibling rivalry done right. The mediators for this whole thing should've been their parents and not the two dumb-asses-in-chief, which had zero relationship of any kind throughout the series with the two.

2. Characters do stupid shit the characters wouldn't be as stupid to do, such as turning the security of the Sisters palace into a game.

       Celestia has been ruling a nation for millennia and lets the two turn her own safety into a game for their friends. Shining Armor somehow became the captain of the Royal Guard and just did that. Luna needed to fire him and check Celestia in at the insane asylum instead of participating in that mess. 

2. Evidences the lack of communication between the writing staff, which causes the cartoon to lack a single vision.

       I don't know if those defenses at least do anything in the following episode when the palace is attacked because I still haven't worked up the patience to watch the rest of the season after the first half, but I am pretty sure that it makes no difference in the end of the season. That mess was pointless in the end. Most important, it was asinine. Shining Armor was proofing the palace against his sister and friends. The whole mindset is wrong and makes no sense. 

Are you saying that you haven't seen all of season 9 yet? If so, how much of it have you seen?

Celestia was the only one who was representing the parents. Luna was scowling about her sister not following her suggestions. Since this is MLP:FiM, you know how well that would have turned out.

I think the episode's premise could have worked better if the guards were in on the game as well. At the very least, that would line up with the fun and zany premise that the writers and voice actresses wanted to work with. I also wouldn't mind if the parents were involved so there could be more interaction between the family including Spike, and the whole family could also be participating in the activity they did some number of years ago. It might be interesting to see how the parents react to Spike winning the contest.

As for the defenses not working at the end of the season, I'm guessing that's the case. For better or worse, the nameless guards would usually get swatted aside by the enemies to prove the latter's power. That's not so different from the good guys swatting aside the nameless evil minions. That's why the named characters who are also tasked with guarding should be allowed to do their jobs, but that's not what the show does. There's also the option of the nameless guards confronting the minions, and that might be a way to show the castle's defenses.

On 5/18/2020 at 2:02 AM, Metemponychosis said:

This is really all. I didn't find anything worth of note that was wrong in this episode. It's a great idea ruined by the idiotic writing I've come to expect whenever Celestia and Luna are involved. It was one of those moments of pandering that Luna's fans seem to love so much where she was right all along and Celestia was made into an idiot, again, because that is all the cartoon has ever managed to do with her.

Celestia's fans should thank whatever gods might exist that fanfiction is a thing. 

As I've said before, I don't even think the show even pandered to the Luna fans that well. Aside from being a counselor in various pony's dreams, Luna hasn't done much else in the show. I guess that's better than being consistently stupid like Celestia, but that's such a backhanded compliment.

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1 hour ago, Number95 said:

Are you saying that you haven't seen all of season 9 yet? If so, how much of it have you seen?

I have seen the first half of it. So I've watched Twilight's Seven.

1 hour ago, Number95 said:

Celestia was the only one who was representing the parents. Luna was scowling about her sister not following her suggestions. Since this is MLP:FiM, you know how well that would have turned out.

You're right, but the point is that their presence was intrusive. I just put her in the same bag as Celestia because she was not part of the game. Or shoudn't.

2 hours ago, Number95 said:

I think the episode's premise could have worked better if the guards were in on the game as well. At the very least, that would line up with the fun and zany premise that the writers and voice actresses wanted to work with. I also wouldn't mind if the parents were involved so there could be more interaction between the family including Spike, and the whole family could also be participating in the activity they did some number of years ago. It might be interesting to see how the parents react to Spike winning the contest

I disagree on the guards. Mixing the game with security shouldn't have been done, period. It just cluttered the episode. Fun and zany is great, but it could've been so without involving the Sisters and just with the family and friends. It would've been just as fun without the idiocy.

Not to mention that their parents could afford to appear more.

2 hours ago, Number95 said:

As for the defenses not working at the end of the season, I'm guessing that's the case. For better or worse, the nameless guards would usually get swatted aside by the enemies to prove the latter's power. That's not so different from the good guys swatting aside the nameless evil minions. That's why the named characters who are also tasked with guarding should be allowed to do their jobs, but that's not what the show does. There's also the option of the nameless guards confronting the minions, and that might be a way to show the castle's defenses.

The problem, as far as the guards are concerned isn't that they get swatted away. The problem is that they never have an opportunity to show that they are supposed to be competent and then make an argument that the villain is powerful/competent to defeat them. Without this, I feel the rest is irrelevant anyways.

3 hours ago, Number95 said:

As I've said before, I don't even think the show even pandered to the Luna fans that well. Aside from being a counselor in various pony's dreams, Luna hasn't done much else in the show. I guess that's better than being consistently stupid like Celestia, but that's such a backhanded compliment.

At the risk of repeating myself, I'll explain what I mean. The cartoon defined and delineated Luna's job, and them showed her doing it and showing that it had an impact. I agree with you that the cartoon could have afforded to do more with her, but the only reason Luna even got that is because the producers knew how much the fandom liked her.

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On 5/27/2020 at 4:21 PM, Leonbrony17 said:

@Number95 Are you gonna review S9 Episode 8 "Frenemies" next?

 

If yes, i'll look forward to it. :)

I'd say there's a fair chance that I'll cover it, but I also want to add that I'm not making any promises.

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@Metemponychosis @Number95

 

 

Since you two are the smartest people around here in terms of criticising the show and characters and we're still a long way off until the next "interesting" Mlp content which is the (hopefully not delayed) 2021 movie, i would like to ask you, are the comics worth reading? Where should i start?

 

Are they better than the show? Even if it's just slightly?

 

I just came across some pictures and (unless they're not official and i'm stupid) goddamn.

 

JOmv4LY.png

 

GSAe5nt.jpg

 

This does look a bit interesting to me.

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@Leonbrony17Personaly I liked the comics, with reservations, until it came to 'The Good, the Bad and the Pony', and then the forest deer arc to which I'm pretty sure I lost a few brain cells. Its the same problem that I had with with the cartoon, but the comics seemed more 'unhinged'. Those were when I lost patience with the comics.

If I'm not mistaken, the first panel comes from Chrysalis' Fiendship is Magic issue, where she's in jail and Twilight go with her friends to visit her. Or something like that. Chrysalis is spewing a long story and it ends exactly as you can imagine it will. The problem in that is something that is the same spastic writing from the show: it's afraid of commitment. Because of the circumstances, without going into spoilers, everything that Chrysalis is telling them could be a lie.

Then there is that book. It's the same problem with almost every single legend in the cartoon: it's fear of commitment to lore. Celestia never does things because herself, it is always about another character. First of all... Celestia attacking Chrysalis and causing permanent damage is not only cringe-worthy and causes more empathy for the queen than she's worth, but the whole panel deserved a story on its own. Seriously, in the cartoon the only moments when Celestia does anything like that is when it's telling some bullshit to set up the backstory for another character. Every. Single. Time.

With that in mind, go read Celestia's chapter book or her comic. And then read Luna's book. You'll understand why I'm so pissed about the writing around her.

The other panel I'm not sure. I have an idea, but I'm not going to risk speaking nonsense. I'll say something though... The comics showed a lot of promise and they seem to have worked better with those big epic stories the cartoon always tried to do. I could never put my finger on why... Maybe it was the fact that they were allowed to get away with a timidly more mature art and plots, or maybe it was something with the pacing.

The biggest problem is that there always seemed to be a disconnection between them and the cartoon to me. For example, in the cartoon Chrysalis' big enemies are Twilight and friends, with that in the comics, she should have Celestia as a visceral enemy. Celestia didn't even know Chrysalis until she debuted in the cartoon and then got her ass handed to her. I suppose she forgot the paper puncher spell... Why didn't Chrysalis beat Celestia in the comic? Read it, you'll see the writing is so bad they didn't realize the situation is almost analogous.

There are issues that make fun of the fact that the Sisters' enemies always come back and then nobody knows how to beat them. I believe this is from the 'not all dragons' story arc from the comics. Biggest problem with the comics is that they try to be woke sometimes and it always turn into an OC showing how bad the characters from the show are. And then the cartoon always ignored them.

 

TL;DR: read the comics, they are entertaining on their own, but keep a bottle of sake nearby. Start at the beginning. When you get tired of the main series, read a few issues of Friends Forever or if you're curious about the villains, read the Fiendship is Magic issues. Character series issues are typically good in that they understand the characters. Tell us what you thought of them later.

 

EDIT: It's just occurred to me that the fanfictions I'm writing are quite literally the kinds of legends that some of those comics talk about, such as in Chrysalis Fiendship is Magic. I should have loved that at the time. Sure, I turn the entire thing into a greek tragedy with the changelings, but the point is that lore is bread and butter. If it wasn't for those problems I mentioned, I wouldn't have anything but praise for that issue.

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On 6/4/2020 at 5:42 PM, Leonbrony17 said:

are the comics worth reading? Where should i start?

On 6/4/2020 at 5:42 PM, Leonbrony17 said:

Are they better than the show? Even if it's just slightly?

Honestly, I don't know whether to say the comics are worth it or not.

I did buy some of the comics in TPB form, but I only got the micro-series, some of the Friendship is Magic titles (up to issue 24), and some of the Friends Forever titles (also up to issue 24). I have not read any of the other MLP comics, and I don't know which issues the two images are from. Why did I buy the comics at first? They came out during a time when I still had some amount of genuine interest in the show, and I wanted to see the other kinds of weird situations the pony characters could be put in. I suppose I was even hoping that the comics would handle the bigger stories better than the show could as I was more interested in the more magical aspect of MLP, and I was also hoping that maybe the alicorn sisters could get more spotlight somewhere else. Maybe the show wouldn't bother with them, but at least the comics tie-in would be something. I also quite like the artwork I saw. One of the biggest positives of the show is its simple and stylized art direction, looking bright, colorful, and cute while still letting the villains look villainous. The comic artwork doesn't quite look like the show, and I'm not sure the show's exact art would translate that well to comic form, but the characters were still very recognizable. However, there are some comics with art that I didn't like too much.

As with the show, the slice-of-life stories are better than the bigger and "epic" stories. Even though the "epic" comic stories weren't as good as I would have liked, I do like the comic stories better than the show's "epic" stories for the most part for a two reasons. One of them is the climactic showdown. The show rarely, if ever, lets the characters fight each other somehow, with the only good example being in "Shadow Play". Otherwise, the villains would show up and immediately get blasted away. The comics at the very least allow some kind of showdown to happen and not end so quickly. The other is that the princesses are actually given something to do, as in they don't get dragged into the stories and then aren't immediately thrown out the window for the sake of the Mane 6.

I stopped buying the comics not just because of my declining interest in the show, but also because the comics are always gonna pull from the show. For example, I've read the premises of some of the later issues, and they have Starlight and the School of Friendship, which are things I'm not that terribly interested in, so I didn't have a reason to continue reading them even if the comics aren't in continuity with the show.

If you're going to read the comics, you'll have to take them as a completely separate series from the show. They may use the same characters, but it's clear that the creative team behind the show never read the comics as the comics are never referenced in any way. I wouldn't be surprised if the comic writers didn't see the entire show, but I imagine that they might have seen at least a few episodes to get a feel for the show. In other words, the comics are essentially an alternate universe to me. The smaller slice-of-life stories are, for the most part, still enjoyable, so I would say give the micro-series and Friends Forever a look if you're interested enough. There might even be ways to read the comics online if you don't wanna pay for them. I'm not sure if I'll check out the rest of Friends Forever, though.

On 6/5/2020 at 2:33 PM, Metemponychosis said:

With that in mind, go read Celestia's chapter book or her comic. And then read Luna's book. You'll understand why I'm so pissed about the writing around her. 

Can you expand on this?

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2 hours ago, Number95 said:

Honestly, I don't know whether to say the comics are worth it or not.

 

If you're going to read the comics, you'll have to take them as a completely separate series from the show. They may use the same characters, but it's clear that the creative team behind the show never read the comics as the comics are never referenced in any way.

 

Yes, i know that the tv show and comics are two seperate universes.

 

@Metemponychosis Woke? Oh no, there's the turn off for me.

 

With Star Wars, Marvel and a lot of other stuff getting ruined by woke shit in recent months i really hope that G5 isn't gonna be affected by that. Logically speaking Mlp should be untouchable. Most of the characters are women, there was a rumor that G5 Applejack is gonna be voiced by a black women. There were a few LGBT characters in G4 and if they do it like in S9 Episode 12 where Scootaloos aunts were lesbian just for the sake of beeing lesbian, it was specifically pointed out, and didn't ruin or take out from the story then there's your fucking representation. But SJWs and political agenda pushers have no logic or common sense so i'm still a tiny bit worried.

 

Aaaaaand i i decided i'm gonna stay away from the comics for now (and maybe ever) anyway because right now i have so much on my plate.

 

There are still a couple movies i have to catch up on.

 

I've recently gotten into Star Wars with everyone (including me) shitting on the Disney Star Wars movies and i want to watch the first 6 episodes for the first time in my life.

 

I'm curious about how Pony Life turns out so i'm gonna watch that when i can.

 

And with another questionable Mlp spin off coming this year i thought that maybe now's the best time to go back and work myself through the other questionable Equestria Girls. 4 or 5 movies, and a tv show? Or Youtube series? I don't know what or where Equestria Girls even is anymore at this point. I have only the seen first EG movie a couple years ago and i hated it because i hate EG as a concept in itself.

 

So i got quite a lot to do.

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1 hour ago, Leonbrony17 said:

Woke? Oh no, there's the turn off for me.

Mind it, not all of them. But it is your choice.

1 hour ago, Leonbrony17 said:

With Star Wars, Marvel and a lot of other stuff getting ruined by woke shit in recent months i really hope that G5 isn't gonna be affected by that. Logically speaking Mlp should be untouchable. Most of the characters are women, there was a rumor that G5 Applejack is gonna be voiced by a black women. There were a few LGBT characters in G4 and if they do it like in S9 Episode 12 where Scootaloos aunts were lesbian just for the sake of beeing lesbian, it was specifically pointed out, and didn't ruin or take out from the story then there's your fucking representation. But SJWs and political agenda pushers have no logic or common sense so i'm still a tiny bit worried.

 

Marvel, yes. Star Wars I don't think that it was necessarily 'the wokeness' that damaged it. Poor Finn had a story arc ripped from him... And the lore got thrown in the trash so hard that the whole Holdo Maneuver might have damaged every single Star Wars story that happened in space to date. In Star Wars case though, I think it was more the childish fight between Ryan Johnson and J. J. Abrams that damaged the story. For fuck's sake... MLP could've done the last movie better. In fact I think that the MLP movie is better structured and has a more reasonable plot. Let that sink in. Not to mention that Rebels is damn good, as is Rogue One and the Mandalorian.

I'm gonna speak as a legitimately privileged white male. I'm Brazilian though... Maybe that gives me some 'cred'.

I'm a white male doctor. I am the very definition of what a privileged person is. Even if I don't like the term, I understand what it means in the lingo and maybe I just don't get it because I'm not in an legitimately oppressed group. So, there is that.

I don't like this representation culture. Personally, If it was about me, I would think that it is rather demeaning. Mostly because it is mostly done with token, lazy characters, and Scootaloo's aunts are a good example. It makes me remember the 90's movies where you had the geeky kid with glasses, the fat comedic relief, The Girl, The Black Kid, and the asian that was good with math. Today we have the token lesbian couple. If you are going to do something, have the balls to do it right (or the ovaries, as a teacher of mine used to say). Have one of the main characters being your lesbian character and show her kicking ass, metaphorically, when she meets discrimination. Because that is the issue.

I looked forward to Captain Marvel being a great movie because I, as a doctor, saw some of the damage that misogynistic oppression can do. I live in a very toxic society where the typical 'men don't cry/women must be feminine' bullshit is rampant. I personally received patients 'that fell down the stairs'. I cared for rape victims. Now, the reason I'm saying this is because none of these 'feminist icons' (Rey, Cap. Denvers, the Valkyrie from Thor: Ragnarock, or the entire cast of MLP that the producers claimed was a feminist cartoon) ever faced misogyny. All of them were too generic to really touch on these subjects, and in the same vein, Scootaloo never faced discrimination or even real difficulty for being handicapped (if she even was because the cartoon implies it with too much fear of commitment to the idea) and her aunts never had to defend their orientation and their right to express it.

The problem is that these characters, or facets of them, always turn into an inserted idea that stands out rather than complement the character. As you said, Scootaloo's aunts add nothing to the story. It's just a hand wave gesture of virtue signaling. Now, if Scootaloo's parents went 'Nuh-uh' fearing that they would harm Scootaloo, and the episode was about Scootaloo trying to understand the issue and dealing with it, maybe educating her parents, it would've been great.

But Metemponychosis! You can't have that in a children's cartoon! Well, no shit. Maybe it shouldn't haven't been included then? Maybe the producers should have bitten the bullet and made something with it? An analogy like they did with Tank and Rainbow Dash? Anything other than leaving it in the open and pretending that they did something. They should have believed the children in their audience, because if there is one thing that I know is that they are several steps ahead of you.

So, it didn't ruin the story. It's not like it infected the cartoon with "THE GAY!(TM)" and ruined everything. It was not the fact that her aunts were in a same-gender relationship that damaged the story. It was the poor writing that damaged it and I'm not even going into the poor use of a parody of a real person. Especially one such as Jane Goodall. Damn, you done goofed DHX.

This bad use of token characters and lazy agenda cardboard cut-outs are so bad and damage the efforts against the ideas they pretend to fight against so much that a person that most certainly advocates for change finds them counterproductive. It pisses me off.

In fact, this is one of the reasons that angered me about what the cartoon did to Celestia. With so many world leaders being absolute, insufferable idiots (and I'll mention my president that wants to hide the number of COVID-19 casualties from official reports and directly advocates fascist ideologies), Celestia could've been a real example of what a world leader is. But politics are scary. True advocacy of ideologies, even when they are for good of historically oppressed groups, is scary. But most of all, lazy writing and shallow virtue signaling is easy.

This is what scares me in the newer cartoons. Both Pony life and G5. Lazy writing and virtue signaling.

I look forward to seeing Celestia getting her ass handed to her and looking ugly at the same time.

2 hours ago, Leonbrony17 said:

Logically speaking Mlp should be untouchable. Most of the characters are women, there was a rumor that G5 Applejack is gonna be voiced by a black women.

Well, AJ is going to be a new character instead of the same character with a new voice, so I'm cool with that. 

2 hours ago, Leonbrony17 said:

And with another questionable Mlp spin off coming this year i thought that maybe now's the best time to go back and work myself through the other questionable Equestria Girls. 4 or 5 movies, and a tv show? Or Youtube series? I don't know what or where Equestria Girls even is anymore at this point. I have only the seen first EG movie a couple years ago and i hated it because i hate EG as a concept in itself.

I have a funny story with Equestria Girls. When it was first announced it was simply a "MLP movie'. I went nuts. I was legitimately prepared to travel to the US just to watch it on the premiere. I called my friends and even had my visa checked so that there would be no issues. When I realized what it actually was about (I don't remember if it was an actual trailer or some concept art) I started laughing at my own naivety and my mother thought I was going crazy.

Ah, I've rambled too much...

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@Number95

In Celestia's book she completely lacks any sort of agency in the story she's supposed to star on and does things like thanking the sun for letting her mess with it (important later). It looks like a completely butchered story where she is visiting a foreign princess (because of course). The only thing she really does is recruit Luna to use her dream powers and help solve the situation.

In her comic the whole story is about one of the teacher in her school (that is never even relevant in the cartoon), about how she isn't ready to retire yet, despite being old. Half of it is Celestia going on and on abut how the others are important and how she, by herself, couldn't do anything. She has a criminal lack of agency in the comic that was about to be her story.

These two had me convinced that someone in the decision making process HATED Celestia.

Luna's book is more like a real story but she is acting like the spoiled child I usually mention she should be. I should have liked the story, if it didn't make Olympic level mental gymnastics to prove that Lunas was right in using her dreams powers to influence ponies dream and cause them to make a party for her exactly the way she wanted. There is also this bizarre contrast with Celestia where it goes to the length of having Luna speaking Latin, glorifying her thestral guards and ripping off Odin's Huggin and Munnin. And she also has a dream ticker... 

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On 6/7/2020 at 10:32 PM, Metemponychosis said:

@Number95

In Celestia's book she completely lacks any sort of agency in the story she's supposed to star on and does things like thanking the sun for letting her mess with it (important later). It looks like a completely butchered story where she is visiting a foreign princess (because of course). The only thing she really does is recruit Luna to use her dream powers and help solve the situation.

In her comic the whole story is about one of the teacher in her school (that is never even relevant in the cartoon), about how she isn't ready to retire yet, despite being old. Half of it is Celestia going on and on abut how the others are important and how she, by herself, couldn't do anything. She has a criminal lack of agency in the comic that was about to be her story.

These two had me convinced that someone in the decision making process HATED Celestia.

Luna's book is more like a real story but she is acting like the spoiled child I usually mention she should be. I should have liked the story, if it didn't make Olympic level mental gymnastics to prove that Lunas was right in using her dreams powers to influence ponies dream and cause them to make a party for her exactly the way she wanted. There is also this bizarre contrast with Celestia where it goes to the length of having Luna speaking Latin, glorifying her thestral guards and ripping off Odin's Huggin and Munnin. And she also has a dream ticker... 

I haven't read the books, so I won't comment on those.

As for Celestia's comic, I thought it was decent enough as it at least gave some focus to Celestia. She was able to think of a way to keep an apparently dotty teacher around by appealing to the students' parents. Sure, that teacher wasn't relevant to the cartoon, but I already went into the comics thinking that the comics were set in an alternate universe as I doubt the people on the show would bother reading the comics. However, the one major complaint I also have about the comic is that it isn't completely about Celestia herself. This complaint would probably be much smaller if she had ever gotten more focus anywhere else or even in another standalone comic issue, but this lack of focus on Celestia anywhere else unintentionally compounded the problem. And from the looks of the comics, Celestia and Luna don't receive much attention anyways. Overall, I don't think Celestia's micro-issue was bad, and I personally thought it was better at helping Celestia than the episode "Horse Play", but then again I guess I'm able to separate that single issue from the show.

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18 hours ago, Number95 said:

Overall, I don't think Celestia's micro-issue was bad, and I personally thought it was better at helping Celestia than the episode "Horse Play", but then again I guess I'm able to separate that single issue from the show.

You know from our conversations in PM that I have absolutely no problem disagreeing with you because you because you think about why you like or don't something, but it bothers me that it seem that fans have a strange tendency of treating everything around Celestia as tough it's complicated quantum science. I'll explain.

Whenever there is an episode or comic issue about a character nobody has any problem with it if it creates a stupid problem for that character to fix. It usually goes with the character learning something they didn't know or the reader learning something they didn't know, then the character does its thing and the problem is solved. With rare exceptions Celestia is the only character in the entire goddamn series that solves problems by stepping away from the problem and/or letting another character steal the story. It completely robs the character of agency within the story and Celestia is the only character that is defined by what she can't do and when she does something it is en passant even in the stories where she is supposed to be the star. Even in this comic in question Celestia is going on about how there were always others that helped her. The whole thing is so inconsequential. It's a teacher that teaches at HER school in HER kingdom. Every time she shows up it seems that any importance she should have because of those things evaporates. If anything, the whole comic ought to be Celestia delivering those thoughts to the parents and foals rather than the reader, and because she felt like, not because she needed to justify her inaction towards the teacher's retirement.

 

So, why is it bad in this fed-up fan's opinion?

- The premisse is that they wanted the teacher to retire already, but she wouldn't. By the end she didn't. The story began and ended and nothing changed because Celestia didn't change her opinion either.

- It's a main character in a story that isn't about the main character and in which they lack agency. It's like writing a story about about a guy watching dramatic events unfold and doing nothing about them, learning nothing and affecting nothing about his universe because of it. It's like it's trying to convince the audience of something rather than telling a story about a character, which is universally a problem with the comics.

- It's a story that is below the main character. I swear to God! If a character has the power to decide the fate of the nation or even the entire world and can control when the fucking day ends and starts, the story should be about that and someone ought to be dragged out back and shot for writing a story about that character worrying about something that has no impact in the lives of her millions of subjects and whatever decision is theirs to make anyway and everybody else can suck it if they don't like. There is an overarching universe on which this story is a part of, and if the story is inconsequential from the point of view it is being told, it should not be told or should be told from another point of view. For this to make any sense, this story should have been about one of Celestia's deputies in her school trying to convince her that the teacher should be retired or not, or about Celestia convincing that deputy of such.

- It is a wasted opportunity. The series has started and ended. The comics aren't trying any harder and the books much less. I still don't know why Celestia is even remotely important. I don't know why the producers made the decision to make her the ruler and I don't understand what is it that she contributes. I don't understand why the cartoon used her as a measure of power when that power is irrelevant (like that retarded gimmick about the changeling holes). I don't understand why they gave her control of the sun if the from the storytelling perspective they could've lost that bullshit of unicorns losing their magic and it wouldn't have made a difference and if it still were the unicorns controlling the sun and moon (ironic because even if that was the case, Luna would still have her relevance). I don't understand why they even made a point about controlling the sun and moon when it's completely irrelevant even when it should be crucial. I don't understand why is it that they made her Twilight's tutor if Twilight learned everything by herself. I don't understand what difference does it make that Celestia retired (I still chuckle at the notion) when, if anything things are better because Twilight is the God-Emperor of Friendship without a Lupercal to give her pause, or even a sister to share the responsibility. And then the cartoon had the balls to imply a cycle. Fuck that. It's world class bad writing and this comic is the golden standard of it.

 

Sorry about another rant, but people tell me that I'm angry because Celestia didn't turn turn out the way I wanted when in reality the problem is that she didn't even turn out at all. You know very well that I'm fine with Luna even if I think that the spoiled brat would've fit her better, and even then I agree with you that the cartoon could've used Luna better, if at all.

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On 6/21/2020 at 10:21 AM, Metemponychosis said:

Whenever there is an episode or comic issue about a character nobody has any problem with it if it creates a stupid problem for that character to fix. It usually goes with the character learning something they didn't know or the reader learning something they didn't know, then the character does its thing and the problem is solved. With rare exceptions Celestia is the only character in the entire goddamn series that solves problems by stepping away from the problem and/or letting another character steal the story. It completely robs the character of agency within the story and Celestia is the only character that is defined by what she can't do and when she does something it is en passant even in the stories where she is supposed to be the star. Even in this comic in question Celestia is going on about how there were always others that helped her. The whole thing is so inconsequential. It's a teacher that teaches at HER school in HER kingdom. Every time she shows up it seems that any importance she should have because of those things evaporates. If anything, the whole comic ought to be Celestia delivering those thoughts to the parents and foals rather than the reader, and because she felt like, not because she needed to justify her inaction towards the teacher's retirement. 

On 6/21/2020 at 10:21 AM, Metemponychosis said:

The premisse is that they wanted the teacher to retire already, but she wouldn't. By the end she didn't. The story began and ended and nothing changed because Celestia didn't change her opinion either.

We've discussed more than a few times about the biggest problem with Celestia in the show is that there's more interest in saying what she can't do instead of showing what she can do. And this comic does at least show what Celestia is able to do, which was convince some other ponies of Inkwell's capabilities. I actually liked how Celestia even approached the task of convincing the other ponies, which was asking them to remember what Inkwell did for them instead of simply exerting her authority and declaring what Inkwell did so those other ponies would be able to see everything for themselves. And sure, Celestia needed help to deal with some invasion, but I personally never minded if she wasn't all-powerful. At least she made an apparent contribution during that struggle. The teacher didn't want to retire yet, at least according to Celestia. But the comic didn't exactly show the teacher wanting to retire, so whatever.

On 6/21/2020 at 10:21 AM, Metemponychosis said:

It's a story that is below the main character. I swear to God! If a character has the power to decide the fate of the nation or even the entire world and can control when the fucking day ends and starts, the story should be about that and someone ought to be dragged out back and shot for writing a story about that character worrying about something that has no impact in the lives of her millions of subjects and whatever decision is theirs to make anyway and everybody else can suck it if they don't like. There is an overarching universe on which this story is a part of, and if the story is inconsequential from the point of view it is being told, it should not be told or should be told from another point of view. For this to make any sense, this story should have been about one of Celestia's deputies in her school trying to convince her that the teacher should be retired or not, or about Celestia convincing that deputy of such.

I agree that a story like this is too small for Celestia, but that doesn't make it bad to me. At the very least, this met my minimum requirements for a serviceable Princess Celestia story, which is showing what she can do and letting her do what she can to reach a desired goal while also revealing something about her.

I know I would have minded this comic even less if the comics picked up the show's slack.

 

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5 hours ago, Number95 said:

We've discussed more than a few times about the biggest problem with Celestia in the show is that there's more interest in saying what she can't do instead of showing what she can do.

Dude, you've ruined my night.:gonkity:

That is true, though you're pulling it out of context. The problem with Celestia is that she can't do anything that she should be able to do.

Also, I just cracked open the comic because something didn't seem right to me. You said that she did convince the ponies of the teacher's capabilities, and you're right. Fuck. I wish I hadn't gotten into this discussion because the damn thing is worse than I remembered. I had forgotten that after Celestia was reminiscing in her room about how useless she is and how awesome Inkwell is, there is indeed a scene where they are judging if she'll stay!

Let me try to get this right and show you why this is still a bad use of Celestia. And hopefully that I wasn't completely wrong.

5 hours ago, Number95 said:

And this comic does at least show what Celestia is able to do, which was convince some other ponies of Inkwell's capabilities. I actually liked how Celestia even approached the task of convincing the other ponies, which was asking them to remember what Inkwell did for them instead of simply exerting her authority and declaring what Inkwell did so those other ponies would be able to see everything for themselves. I actually liked how Celestia even approached the task of convincing the other ponies, which was asking them to remember what Inkwell did for them instead of simply exerting her authority and declaring what Inkwell did so those other ponies would be able to see everything for themselves. 

Did you understand that I wanted Celestia to exert her authority? Yes, because that is what she should be doing as a ruler, but also as the name that appears in "Celestia's School". It was not me that called her 'ruler' it was the cartoon. It was not me that said it was her school. But even then, not necessarily in this issue. I still think that this is a story that shouldn't exist and the only reason it exists is because the plot creates a contrivance so that the story has relevance, and even then it is within itself. And even though I was wrong when I said that Celestia lacks agency, this is worse. She has agency over an issue that shouldn't exist.
So let's make an episode where Celestia must give her throne to King Sombra because the writer pulled a law out of their ass that says Celestia must for whatever absurd reason. The fuck? I expect Pony Life to pull something like that...

This comic is telling me that Celestia doesn't have control over her own school by creating a situation where a bunch of idiots can force her to damage her school (assuming that the comic even manages to make a good point about Inkwell's capacity) and she couldn't do anything about it if they decided that Inkwell should go. Even if they were wrong. 

How about this: if they wanted to tell a story about Celestia being... Convincing? What attribute did she actually use? All she did was tell those ponies things they already knew. You could substitute her for a scene where those ponies are laying on their beds and started thinking and realized that they were wrong.

This made me think. I'm amazed at the dissonance between what Celestia's school seemed to teach in season one where Twilight was admitted because she showed incredible latent magic, and this comic where Celestia convinces the ponies of the teacher's value with stuff that has nothing to do with actually teaching magic. But this is just me being me.

But let's go with this idea that the story must be about Celestia convincing those ponies to let Inkwell stay. How about this: Inkwell wanted to retire because she saw that those characters thought that she should, and then Celestia stepped in to change their opinion and thus cause the her to not retire. Not only this story gives a good reason to circumvent the fact that it is Celestia's school, giving her agency over a problem that she can't fix with her authority she should have and no asspull plot device is necessary.

In this alternative plot I mentioned Celestia's power over her school would be irrelevant because even if she could decide who stays and who leaves regardless of some ponies being idiots, she wouldn't force the teacher to stay against her will.

Be honest. Which one of these stories would you rather read? In which one does Celestia's success, and a potential failure, have bigger emotional impact?

This comic still does the same that the cartoon does with Celestia all the time. A hackjob of a plot contrivance so that a plot that shouldn't exist because of her suddenly can, and she comes out looking pathetic even if she won.

5 hours ago, Number95 said:

And sure, Celestia needed help to deal with some invasion, but I personally never minded if she wasn't all-powerful.

I don't think that I said that Celestia must be all-powerful. But then, she must lose every time unless she's saved by the amazing OC?

Continuing on that point about the comic pulling down Celestia, let's remake this comic as though it actually was about Celestia and not about Inkwell.

Celestia is considering giving away her position as... Whatever she is in her school. Doesn't really mater what... Praetor. Director. Director and teacher... Whatever. The point is that it is her school and she is a teacher in it, after all, she took Twilight as her personal student. Let's help the plot by assuming that Celestia would give her position because even without her, the school's prestige would still be important. So there you have it. Celestia is feeling insecure because some ponies started saying that she is accumulating too many responsibilities and they are concerned about her ability to rule the nation and also manage/teach at the school.

Now Celestia and Inkwell interchange their roles from the comic. The story is about Inkwell reminiscing about Celestia being generally awesome and helping protect the city (notice the change in perspective: instead of trying by herself and failing, she is helping another who can't to by themselves). About how she has a gift for teaching. About how she understands the value of... Stuff. But let's not have a test, because that would be retarded considering her position. Instead, let's have Inkwell inviting those ponies for a tea and sharing some wisdom with them, and then proving what a great teacher she is.

Wouldn't that  fix part of the problem with Celestia in the cartoon instead of adding to it and make a world more of sense?

Assuming you wanted to read a story about Celestia, in Celestia's comic, in the micro series that is about their titular characters, which story would you rather read? The one where Celestia is preaching about an original character or the story about the original character preaching about Celestia?

And I'll say more. Celestia ought to be powerful, yes. If not for her age and experience alone, because the franchise constantly uses her a measure of power with the over-mentioned Worf Effect. For the same reason she also ought to be wise, perspicacious and fucking busy. She rules a nation. She doesn't have time for petty shit like educating the retards nobody gives a damn about.

This comic pisses me off.

7 hours ago, Number95 said:

At least she made an apparent contribution during that struggle.

Again, that is what she always does. It doesn't define what she is. It defines what she isn't. It's like describing a character by saying that their coat is not red, their mane isn't gray and their eyes aren't yellow. But their cutie mark also isn't a star.

7 hours ago, Number95 said:

I agree that a story like this is too small for Celestia, but that doesn't make it bad to me.

It should. For all the reasons I just posted here, and by the context of the character overall in the franchise.

Which is not the same as saying that you can't like. You can like it all you want, and that is entirely your decision, but that is objectively a poorly written story with a poorly construed vision of how a character should be explored and a bad use of the source material.

8 hours ago, Number95 said:

At the very least, this met my minimum requirements for a serviceable Princess Celestia story, which is showing what she can do and letting her do what she can to reach a desired goal while also revealing something about her.

I'm not going to pull this on you, because this is completely subjective, but this seems to be a departure from what I understood about your problems with Princess Luna.

And I will disagree that this did tell us anything about Celestia.

Quote

How about this: if they wanted to tell a story about Celestia being... Convincing? What attribute did she actually use? All she did was tell those ponies things they already knew. You could substitute her for a scene where those ponies are laying on their beds, started thinking and realized that they were wrong.

To me, this story seems wholly about Inkwell. Celestia's reminiscing is about her impotence and about Inkwell. The things that convinced the ponies to change their mind were all about Inkwell. Her test is about Inkwell's capacity to see inner beauty... Or whatever that was supposed to be. It was a fucking ugly frog that didn't have anything special about it that the character could lean on to show how unimportant the fact that it was ugly was. You could change Celestia for almost any other character and the plot wouldn't change at all, because even the power to decide is striped from her. I mean, the cartoon at least managed to show that Celestia has this convenient magic that makes the sun go shine. In fact, if you changed Inkwell for Celestia, this would have been a great story about her.

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On 6/26/2020 at 1:15 AM, Metemponychosis said:

But let's go with this idea that the story must be about Celestia convincing those ponies to let Inkwell stay. How about this: Inkwell wanted to retire because she saw that those characters thought that she should, and then Celestia stepped in to change their opinion and thus cause the her to not retire. Not only this story gives a good reason to circumvent the fact that it is Celestia's school, giving her agency over a problem that she can't fix with her authority she should have and no asspull plot device is necessary.

In this alternative plot I mentioned Celestia's power over her school would be irrelevant because even if she could decide who stays and who leaves regardless of some ponies being idiots, she wouldn't force the teacher to stay against her will.

Be honest. Which one of these stories would you rather read? In which one does Celestia's success, and a potential failure, have bigger emotional impact?

This comic still does the same that the cartoon does with Celestia all the time. A hackjob of a plot contrivance so that a plot that shouldn't exist because of her suddenly can, and she comes out looking pathetic even if she won.

I don't know what it's like for a ruler to own a school, so I won't say anything about that. This does remind me of "School Daze", and that episode also said that Celestia couldn't exert her own authority over any school in Equestria.

Still, I wouldn't want Celestia to simply exert her own authority about the decisions she makes since it won't sound so different from "because I said so."

But you do make a good point about Inkwell considering the idea to leave the school since that don't make an issue out of whatever kind of authority Celestia may or may not have, so that probably would work better.

On 6/26/2020 at 1:15 AM, Metemponychosis said:

Continuing on that point about the comic pulling down Celestia, let's remake this comic as though it actually was about Celestia and not about Inkwell.

Celestia is considering giving away her position as... Whatever she is in her school. Doesn't really mater what... Praetor. Director. Director and teacher... Whatever. The point is that it is her school and she is a teacher in it, after all, she took Twilight as her personal student. Let's help the plot by assuming that Celestia would give her position because even without her, the school's prestige would still be important. So there you have it. Celestia is feeling insecure because some ponies started saying that she is accumulating too many responsibilities and they are concerned about her ability to rule the nation and also manage/teach at the school.

Now Celestia and Inkwell interchange their roles from the comic. The story is about Inkwell reminiscing about Celestia being generally awesome and helping protect the city (notice the change in perspective: instead of trying by herself and failing, she is helping another who can't to by themselves). About how she has a gift for teaching. About how she understands the value of... Stuff. But let's not have a test, because that would be retarded considering her position. Instead, let's have Inkwell inviting those ponies for a tea and sharing some wisdom with them, and then proving what a great teacher she is.

Wouldn't that  fix part of the problem with Celestia in the cartoon instead of adding to it and make a world more of sense?

Assuming you wanted to read a story about Celestia, in Celestia's comic, in the micro series that is about their titular characters, which story would you rather read? The one where Celestia is preaching about an original character or the story about the original character preaching about Celestia?

And I'll say more. Celestia ought to be powerful, yes. If not for her age and experience alone, because the franchise constantly uses her a measure of power with the over-mentioned Worf Effect. For the same reason she also ought to be wise, perspicacious and fucking busy. She rules a nation. She doesn't have time for petty shit like educating the retards nobody gives a damn about.

I do prefer your idea of a story that show's the pony citizens' perspectives of Princess Celestia, assuming the story actually shows Celestia being a major source of help to the ponies. Celestia doesn't really get the chance to show her power, and this would be better than having other ponies show their "powers" so Celestia doesn't overshadow them. I mean, Celestia has never really overshadowed anyone in the show, but the cartoon writers keep thinking otherwise.

I would rather have a wise, powerful, and competent Celestia, but that's just one viewer's preference. My thoughts about the comic are just thoughts about how another writer tried to handle her.

So, yes, you are right about the comic not letting Celestia be as impressive as she should be, but I explained a bit more of my thoughts below.

On 6/26/2020 at 1:15 AM, Metemponychosis said:

Again, that is what she always does. It doesn't define what she is. It defines what she isn't. It's like describing a character by saying that their coat is not red, their mane isn't gray and their eyes aren't yellow. But their cutie mark also isn't a star.

Making a contribution by helping fend off an invasion is definitely something she hasn't always done in the show. If anything, she only did it at the beginning of season 9, though that of course comes with its share of problems. We don't really learn anything about whatever that event in the comic was, but I'm just pointing out even something like this is more than what the cartoon would normally allow. You might say that it only shows that she isn't completely useless, and I don't disagree with this scene not actually doing that much in terms of Celestia's capabilities, but I'd rather take that over her being completely useless.

On 6/26/2020 at 1:15 AM, Metemponychosis said:

I'm not going to pull this on you, because this is completely subjective, but this seems to be a departure from what I understood about your problems with Princess Luna.

And I will disagree that this did tell us anything about Celestia.

I think I have said that there isn't much to Princess Luna due to her terribly vague backstory and the "modern day" episodes not actually saying that much about her as a "person", and she becomes rather plain as a result. Well, except that she and Celestia don't know each other that well. What are you referring to, exactly?

As for what it says about Celestia, you said earlier that the ponies she talked to could've instead laid on their beds, arrived at the same conclusions without Celestia's input, and the comic wouldn't be any different for that. Well, I disagree, of course. If those ponies arrived to those conclusions without Celestia's input, that already meant Celestia didn't try to help Inkwell stick around as she didn't try to convince those ponies about Inkwell's helpfulness, and it also meant that Celestia wasn't needed for anything in the story. Celestia's reminders to those ponies show that she has been aware of Inkwell's activities and hasn't forgotten what Inkwell has done. As in, the comic actually shows Celestia knowing and being a friend to another pony and what Celestia would do for a friend.

And before you mention Twilight, I'm just going to point out yet again that Celestia has never helped her, and she has also barely been present in Twilight's life. Oh, I guess she helped Twilight's play, but that's literally it. That episode didn't tell us anything about how Celestia felt about Twilight. And how has Celestia helped Luna, again? Remember that "Magic Sheep" didn't bother including Celestia. Essentially, Princess Celestia did more for this one-shot pony than certain major ponies in the show. I don't know about you, but that's already a pretty bad strike against the show.

If you disagree, that's understandable. I'm just saying why I don't agree.

 

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