WaterPulse

Season 7 Episode 10 - Royal Problems

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Just saw the new episode. Will put my thoughts in once I find out how to do the spoiler thing.

 

Test, test, 123...

 

EDIT: There we go. Now to start for real.

 

 

This episode... wow. Just... just wow.

Along with "The Cutie Re-Mark" and "To Where And Back Again", this is another episode where I love the ingredients presented, but absolutely loathe the way they were mixed. Celestia and Luna switching occupations is something that should have been done a long time ago and I like Celestia confronting her inner demons, which has some nice nightmare sequences. Plus, I like Twilight communicating with Starlight via a musical box. Unfortunately, I think it's an episode where the writers were cramming too much material into too small a space and it suffers for it. Most of the "walk in one's shoes" humor is focused on Luna and by the time we get to Celestia, we have the inner demon thing going on. If they have focused on putting Celestia in a humorous situation, only to have it bleed into the Daybreaker part, or, better yet, have it as two separate stories, it would have worked much better. As it is, the episode ended up where the whole was nowhere near as great as the sum of the parts and squandering another chance for a good Celestia story. Also:

1. Why did Starlight have to be the catalyst for this? Couldn't the switch happened by means of a solar eclipse or something?

2. Is it me, or does Daybreaker come across like something out of Stained Class-era Judas Priest?

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I loved this episode as I feel this is what we so needed between the two and I really liked how Celestia was characterized in this one as well as Luna. Starlight Glimmer's negative traits such as using magic on impulse was actually used as a positive trait here (not to mention she got admonished for it and she ended up regretting it from the guilt) and Twilight was hilarious. This episode is one of my favorites of this season and is definitely the best story between these two sisters.

 

I'll need to look up the flaws but so far I'm feeling this one is at least an A.

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Actually, now that I think about it, my first alternate solution

 

(Having a humorous Celestia moment then merge into the Daybreaker story)

would have worked better, as it would have reinforced the bond that Celestia and Luna needed.

Also, while I still have my reservations about Starlight being in the episode, I think she was alright here.

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@Metemponychosis Give it a go. My initial thoughts was probably a bit harsh*, but, issues aside, I don't think they did enough wrong for me to bang my head against the nearest wall.

*I think me saying they squandered a chance for a good Celestia story was kind of going overboard. They could have done better, but they could have done worse.

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13 minutes ago, WaterPulse said:

@Metemponychosis Give it a go. My initial thoughts was probably a bit harsh*, but, issues aside, I don't think they did enough wrong for me to bang my head against the nearest wall.

*I think me saying they squandered a chance for a good Celestia story was kind of going overboard. They could have done better, but they could have done worse.

Nah. Already got some answers that I wanted. I'm gonna wait for an actual Celestia episode where I can see Celestia being herself and looking good. What a waste of a character... A bureaucrat while the her sister can enter dreams and actually be useful, Cadance literally can make ponies fall in love and even beat Chrysalis with her love magic, hold her own on a fight, protect the Crystal Empire and and is generally a nice older sister. Twilight isn't even worth comparing to Celestia, fixing all of her messes from the past. Even the damn baby can do more than she does. If only I could say that Celestia does a good job at being "The Princess", but not even that.

Fuck. And I was really liking the season.

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Ok I can do this... It shouldn't be too hard.

Ok so this episode happened. It was pretty much what I have predicted to be. The reaction is also obvious. Anyway episode focused both on humor and on feels so chances are that most people will like the episode. Regarding characters sadly no new for the fans to adore except *spoilers*. Fans will have to settle with boring ol' Luna and Celestia being well like they were in Slice of Life and Starlight and Twilight being adorkable.

The issues people can have from this episode is potentially Starlight being OP and Celestia not reaching expectations. Turns out Celestia is a regular person that can get annoyed and merely manages Equestria while other princesses get to do fun stuff. Anyway both are valid points and I am sure someone could bring up few more.

Also random pony dreams were great too. You better go back and re-watch to see them all.


And now for the awards! Because I am bored.   

:celestia:Celestia got an episode. That is the greatest thing she could receive.

:wait:Luna gets an award for best smiles.

starlight_glimmer_by_lolliponybrony-d9wpStarlight gets an award for avoiding being imprisoned for high treason. 

:twitwitch:Twilight wins the award for being the Most Adorkable Pony.
:proud:A certain character gets an award for being awesome. Due to her absence Celestia will take the award instead.


Ok so I tried to be as spoiler free as I could. Even though I am pretty sure anyone reading this thread knows which "mysterious" character I am referring to. Oh and just to be clear I did love the episode.

 

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Almost eight minutes in:

Quote

Luna: I'm…sorry *shoves Starlight outta the way* that you make fruit faces on pancakes. But nights are long for me. You might be a morning pony, but I am half-asleep.

Celestia: You think I don't get tired? I'm exhausted! Oh, I apologize for not noticing flowers in a wall sconce. But by the time I get to retire for the night, I can barely see straight. Even so, I still make an effort *nudges hoof hard on Luna's chest* to smile. *forces smile*

Luna: *sarcastically* Like smiling's so hard. *turns mad* Is that what exhausts you? Smiling and being adored by everypony?

Celestia: And you have it so much worse, do you? You've spent your evenings *turns sarcastic* flitting around giving ponies lovely dreams. Oh, it sounds just awful!

…What the hell?! Celestia and Luna might occasionally argue, but there's a difference between an occasional argument and someone like Celestia demeaning Luna's job like it's a piece of cake. Remember, she lost her sister for a millennium. An in-character Celestia'd understand how much Luna's jobs mean to her. Why? Because it'd show how much she respects, cares for, and loves Luna. For her to insult not only her work, but also her efforts to keep everyone secure and safe, shows she couldn't care less about her at all. Not as a royalty and especially not as a sister!

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22 minutes ago, Dark Qiviut said:

…What the hell?! Celestia and Luna might occasionally argue, but there's a difference between an occasional argument and someone like Celestia demeaning Luna's job like it's a piece of cake. Remember, she lost her sister for a millennium. An in-character Celestia'd understand how much Luna's jobs mean to her. Why? Because it'd show how much she respects, cares for, and loves Luna. For her to insult not only her work, but also her efforts to keep everyone secure and safe, shows she couldn't care less about her at all. Not as a royalty and especially not as a sister!

And suddenly, the Celestia-Luna comic that Andy Price did a few months ago doesn't sound so bad, and considering that his version of Celestia would be more likely to go for a below-the-belt insult like that than her TV counterpart, that's saying something.

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@Dark Qiviut
When people aren't thinking straight they say things they don't really mean. At the moment Celestia is focused more on how demanding her day is and was envious how Luna gets to sleep through it instead. And Luna is too tired to think straight and is bitter. It is not really that unusual.

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This episode is my personal "Princess Twilight".

 

Starlight Glimmer:

Man, this episode was trying very hard to let the audience know that this friendship problem is very very big. And it's Starlight and Starlight ONLY, who must solve it.

Yeah, yeah. We get it. She is special and she will become even more special in the future. Just you wait!

 

Twilight Sparkle:

Why is Twilight biased just because Celestia was her mentor? Wasn't it Twilight who defended Luna in the past? You might think the writers are biased for turning Twilight into a fool to make Starlight look wise and mature. 

Actually, Twilight is so stupid in this episode, it starts to be saddening. I believe Starlight does make Twilight dumb by her mere presence. It was so hard to watch. She kinda reminded me of Pinkie Pie.

 

Celestia:

So, everything Celestia does is just politician's work. A job that every smart and charismatic pony like Filthy Rich or Fancy Pants could do with ease.

Smiling, looking good in public and holding a speech here and there.

I'm impressed, NOT. Celestia having no special abilities confirmed.

And wut? Celestia didn't have any trouble to raise the moon? Wow, I didn't expect DHX to pull this off, tbh. They must have forgotten for a short time to make her weak as usual. In fact, if they had shown Celestia having trouble with that task, I would have stopped watching this episode instantly.

 

Celestia can handle Nightmare Moon? Since when? Of course we won't see something like that on screen. It would have been just in a dream anyway. Oh well, at least Daybreaker (aka Nightmare Sun) appeared, who almost defeated Nightmare Moon. Again, almost and it was just a dream. So what?

 

Maybe i should be glad that Celestia has accomplished something for once. Helping to prevent an unstable pony from becoming eben more a psychic emergency by just one single nightmare. I felt the big importance of that...yeah no. I'm not glad. And of course, Celestia wouldn't have been victorious without help anyway.

 

Luna:

Luna's duty at least is something more than just being a politician. Though, what am i supposed to think about Luna not being capable of doing Celestia's job sucessfully? That she is dumb? Mediocre, Luna. MEDIOCRE!

 

The Royal Sisters:

I "liked" the part of Luna and Celestia being helpless when their Cutie Marks were switched. DHX, you turned them down a peg a little more, now that they didn't even know how to undo Starlight's spell. You have truly demystified the royal sisters. An alicorn is nothing special. Congratulations, staff.

 

Conclusion:

That's it for me. I stop watching the show. I can't enjoy it anymore. Time to move on. Of course I will look at the episode descriptions for season 8, but by now I wouldn't even have the motivation to watch a REAL Celestia Episode. I would be disappointed anyway. And btw, the storyboard supervisor and the two directors (not the two writers) should get fired. Ta-ta.

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And once again, I see people jumping at the chance to invoke Ron The Death Eater on Celestia.

 

 

P.S.: Cue inevitable "NMM x Daybreaker"-shippers in 3... 2... 1...

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The first post was too much of a mess... Here is a better, more collected and civilized version.

I thought I wouldn't have liked this episode, but I actually did. I liked this episode. It's actually Celestia that I hate in it. I think this episode did two terrible mistakes, but first what it did right.

Starlight Glimmer and Twilight are at the top of their form. They were funny, understandable and entertaining.

Some of the visuals were great. Not outstanding, but great. I like that they tried to make Daybreaker's magic impressive, but a flash is... Not gonna cut it after what the cartoon has already done.

The voice acting was great. Nicole's lines as Daybreaker AND as Celestia were very good and it must've been one hell of a recording session.

What I think is the first problem is how childish the two sisters are. Problems that people have daily become a threat so that the map sends someone to fix it. Why? Compared to dragons, hydras, crazy yaks this is ridiculous. But Celestia is the worst. I can't understand how Celestia's fans are praising this episode. (I'm not judging anyone here, it's just... well, you'll see.)

I think it was a terrible decision to switch their places. Instead of seeing the two working together and learning, we see the two being awful at each other's job. Everyone ended up looking bad and it's just mean spirited and wasn't even funny. But the real problem is that Celestia's job was too childish. Even for the cartoon. Of course DHX couldn't show real problems of ruling a country because that would've been too political. But then, if you can't tell a story, tell another one. Celestia's job is smelling flowers, talking to ponies, smiling... And that is tiring for her. C'mon... Even children know that real rulers, especially monarchic queens (something that Celestia isn't...) deal with real tough decisions. The episode has nothing worthy of Celestia's rank to show. No outmaneuvering of political opponents, no use of her powers to help someone in need (something Luna does daily), no court hearings, listening to the little pony's problems. No hard government decisions. And Celestia simply has no magical power like Luna's dreamwalking or Cadance's love magic. Or Twilight magical prowess. Why did they leave Celestia so bare on that? What even IS her talent? Just moving the sun around? That ponies in the past have done anyway? She's supposed to be some badass spellcaster, in their own story, a very powerful being. DHX couldn't think of anything for Celestia? Nothing relating to the day, or light? Healing powers? Blessing crops? Giving her subjects good luck? Blessing weddings? Curing diseases? Figuring out the best job for each pony? Nothing? Why? They made Celestia the most pathetic sun-related character I've ever seen in my life. Why are ponies impressed with her to the point they swear on her name?

In contrast, Luna's job is exactly what we've seen in other episodes. Except we've seen Luna doing it and being damn good at it. It just made Celestia look incompetent. It was sad that Celestia sucks so hard at anything other than smiling. I do that everyday, working in a clinic and it's not even part of the job. Most people I know do that. Why did they do it to Celestia?

The second problem is the whole Daybreaker thing. I feared the notion of showing Celestia as the villain, because I knew the cartoon would mess it up. I loved it in the cartoon and even made it myself in fanfiction, but in the episode, it's just Starlight Glimmer's dream, not even Celestia "dealing with something internal", like Jim Miller likes to put it. And them she started fighting Nightmare Moon... No! It should've been Luna and Celestia fighting it off in a safe environment, not two non-existing entities that Starlight Glimmer's mind created.

Then there is Daybreaker's line about how powerful Celestia knows she really is... No! It's Starlight's dream! Not Celestia's inner demon! Why DHX?! Why?! And don't call Celestia powerful. She's not. She folds like a wet tissue whenever she needs to fight. And also don't say how terrible it would've been to have Celestia go all out when another episode showed that Luna's Nightmare Moon was doing just fine by herself and no pony even cared. Why?

I'm glad a lot of people liked it, but to me it just put another nail on Celestia's coffin. What a shame. Someone call me when Celestia gets called by the map to fix a problem. Maybe them she'll get some justice done to her.

If anything, this episode was a lesson on why you don't abuse your character. So that when you want to, you can actually do something with it

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@Metemponychosis

 

They did show Luna-in-Celestia's-place having to meet with other officials (first about those Timberwolves, then about that dispute between those mayors).

 

And Celestia does have a history of hints of what she can do magically (e.g., breaking Twilight's spell in Lesson Zero, Discord-proofing the Elements in Keep Calm And Flutter On, etc.), even if she hasn't had any recent opportunities to show it.

 

Also, I was under the impression that Celestia's lack of dream-warping experience caused Daydream to "bleed" out from her subconscious and into Starlight's.

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@Metemponychosis Oh thank goodness,you calmed down. Good

 

Lemme see if I can expand a bit.

"Blessing crops"? Honestly this sounds more Spice And Wolf than MLP:FiM. Nonetheless, I do admit that Celestia's day job was anticlimactic compared to  what Luna has to deal with. Granted, there's no way Hasbro will give Celestia a role super complex, but it's not like it's impossible to have her do something important. I wrote an fanfic in my head - and yes, I was desperate enough to rip off an episode concept as soon it was announced - where Luna was in Celestia's role and had to talk with Ember and not make an ass of herself in the process. Have her do that or settle some argument with the Yaks or Changelings or even go to the magic school and teach unicorns some, well, magic. It would present Celestia has actually being relevant in something and still go for the schadenfreude route. Instead, they played it safe in a moment they should not have had and the whole conflict as is comes across more like a Zephyr Breeze/Vinyl Scratch episode than a Celestia/Luna episode.

@Anti-Villain Oh crap, got ninja'd. Thank you for pointing that out. That was probably the best part of Luna's day. I just wish there was more of that.

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Now I'm not so worried about Triple Threat. This is the third time now that an episode I thought would be bad turned out to be good (The first 2 were Flurry of Emotions and Parental Glideance). 

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Lots of mixed opinions it seems on this one. Personally...

Favorite episode of the season thus far! Strap in kiddos, this is a long one.

 

The only character I did not enjoy in the slightest was Twilight. From the get-go, she acts as a negative force toward Starlight. She keeps inadvertently undermining Starlight's confidence, constantly checks up on her proving her own lack of confidence, and proves she can't contain herself by poofing in at the end to get all the details. I don't think that this makes her out of character per say, but hyper-Twi didn't add anything other than a sense of foreboding that Starlight would not otherwise have had, and which really didn't add anything to her decision making.

 

Starlight was on absolute point this episode! Her lack of bias towards the princesses allowed her to make decisions and comments on their behavior that none of the Mane 6 would have had the cajones to do. Her flash decision to swap Cutie Marks on a gut feeling seems like something she'd do as a reactionary move, since that is her forte. We also got to see her slowly reveal to the sisters (well, at least Luna) just how difficult Tia's job is, and then again indirectly through her nightmare.

 

Luna AND Tia were a bit off character as we've come to know them, but I like to think that this is how they are normally. Royal or not, they're people-er, ponies-too, and certainly must have their own quirks. We've seen that Tia has a playful side before when interacting with the Cakes or Twilight in the S7 premiere, and seeing sleepy-Luna take bites out of whole pineapple or banana peels out of sheer weariness is very humanizing. I also don't see them belittling each other's duties as inappropriate of their character, since, as someone with siblings myself, it's not rare to belittle each other's hobbies or responsibilities until you experience them yourself.

 

The one major change i'd have made with this episode is swapping its season order. Id have made this episode one. We could have gotten a bit more of seeing Luna's day, like maybe shunning another duty to make it up to the children, but ruining another engagement in the process. And we could have gotten MUCH more of Day Breaker and Nightmare Moon fighting and taunting Celestia. Part 2 of the premiere might even have been the two personas breaking free of the dream, requiring a tag team slug fest of Nightmare Moon/Day Breaker vs. Celestia and Luna. THAT would have been a hell of a premiere! Plus, it could have pushed Celestial Advice back an episode, and made it less shocking to see some personality out of Tia.

 

TL;DR Luna and Celestia were fun to watch, Tia's part should have been longer, Starlight for best pony, I want a season finale fight with Day Breaker.

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4 hours ago, Dark Qiviut said:

Almost eight minutes in:

…What the hell?! Celestia and Luna might occasionally argue, but there's a difference between an occasional argument and someone like Celestia demeaning Luna's job like it's a piece of cake. Remember, she lost her sister for a millennium. An in-character Celestia'd understand how much Luna's jobs mean to her. Why? Because it'd show how much she respects, cares for, and loves Luna. For her to insult not only her work, but also her efforts to keep everyone secure and safe, shows she couldn't care less about her at all. Not as a royalty and especially not as a sister!

I'm gonna disagree.

 

You aren't wrong at all about how it's not cool that Tia would insult Luna like that. But I also don't find it unbelieveable. It's been at least, what, 2 years in show time? 3? Yes, Tia would be so happy to have her sister back, but they aren't perfect. It would actually be less believeable if Luna didn't do things that bothered Celestia. Afterall, joy at having someone you love back in your life only goes so far if they exhibit negative traits over and over that get to you. Both of them were having efforts they valued go ignored by the other, and neither saw difficulty in the others' work, which can come across as very insulting. Celestia might be happy to have her sister back, but the map wouldn't send Starlight if this was only a small, recent issue. Its likely been boiling for a long time, and was coming to a head soon. Luna was becoming bitter at Tia again, and Celestia was growing annoyed at what she saw as an ungrateful younger sibling.

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2 hours ago, Anti-Villain said:

They did show Luna-in-Celestia's-place having to meet with other officials (first about those Timberwolves, then about that dispute between those mayors).

And Celestia does have a history of hints of what she can do magically (e.g., breaking Twilight's spell in Lesson Zero, Discord-proofing the Elements in Keep Calm And Flutter On, etc.), even if she hasn't had any recent opportunities to show it.

Also, I was under the impression that Celestia's lack of dream-warping experience caused Daydream to "bleed" out from her subconscious and into Starlight's.

But they didn't actually show anything or even that Celestia would be, necessarily very good at it. Part of my complaint is that I saw that Luna is good at her job, so it's fine that she isn't good at social stuff. But I've never seem Celestia doing her job well, I don't have a reason to believe that she does, while she's bad at Luna's job. They did Luna right, but Celestia has missing information. I'm supposed to imagine that she's good at it, and the point of an episode is to show these characters doing things and changing because of them.

Those spells weren't shown as part of Celestia's set of unique skills. As far as we know, any unicorn with training could do the same. I certainly don't have a problem imagining Starlight Glimmer dispelling an enchantment, for example. Not to mention that when Celestia does magic, it's always to service the plot. I can't imagine Celestia appearing in an episode just to dispel something the same way that I've seen Luna appearing specifically to dreamwallk.

I've been getting this argument about Celestia's subconscious in a lot of places. Is there a line of dialogue that mentions that? I can't remember. (This is definitively a possibility, because the stream I watched the episode was awful.)

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