Captain Sorzo

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About Captain Sorzo

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  • Birthday 05/16/1991

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My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic

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  1. Merry Birthiversary! 

  2. Merry Birthiversary!

  3. Merry Birthiversary!

  4. Glad to see the standards of this site have finally improved. There was an appalling amount of attention being given to individuals other than the Empress of Elegance, and this overhaul in favor of art, culture, beauty, and adorableness was needed for quite some time.
  5. Rarity > Dash > Twilight > Fluttershy = Pinkie (counting party planning) > Applejack > Pinkie (without party planning) Rarity started as a regular citizen of a small, insignificant backwater and clawed her way up into becoming a renowned designer and successful entrepreneur. Dash worked her way into an entry position in an elite pseudo-military group, which is fairly impressive, though undermined by the generally negative portrayal of the Wonderbolts. For all the praise endlessly showered on her, Twilight's main accomplishment essentially boils down to graduating from college. It's nothing to sneeze at, but hardly worthy of the royal title and castle that Celestia and Plot Contrivance respectively bequeathed her, particularly since she went into her studies with the personal attention of the supreme ruler of the land and an unheard of degree of magical potential. Fluttershy manages a small but respectable business (or government position; it's rather vague) that carries a good deal of responsibility. Applejack works extremely hard, but ultimately just maintains the status quo of the family business she inherited. Finally, Pinkie is a mere apprentice at a small business. Assuming her party planning is done for free, her professional accomplishments are easily the least impressive of the Mane 6. Factoring in her party planning, however, I'd probably put her on par with Flutters, considering it's something she developed from scratch that is quite popular with the entire town.
  6. Twilight's friends had every right not to believe her at the end of ACW Part 1. After all, she recently had two massive, borderline psychotic freakouts over issues that ultimately amounted to nothing (see: Lesson Zero and It's About Time). This is clearly an individual prone to 'discovering' nonexistent crises and recklessly involving others in manic attempts to resolve them. Furthermore, the argument that Twilight had known Cadance her whole life holds no real weight, considering she didn't even know her full name or the fact that she was in any way romantically involved with her brother; she's hardly in a position to be an astute judge of her character. Finally, the act of an adult interrupting a wedding rehearsal to declare the bride evil is an incredibly offensive thing to do, something that, realistically, could easily create a division between the couple and accuser for years to come. And in making this accusation, Twilight had no concrete, irrefutable evidence whatsoever. I've seen arguments condemning the Mane 5 for not trusting Twilight, but Twilight brazenly accusing Cadance is itself a display of her lack of faith in the Mane 5. They saw Twilight being on the verge of another one of her freakout episodes and tried to talk her down, offering reasonable explanations for Cadance's behavior. Yet rather than listening to them, Twilight sticks to her paranoid opinions, and in doing so commits an extremely rude and hurtful act. All evidence pointed to Twilight being in the wrong...again. But hey! Let's demonize Celestia and the Mane 5 here! Because it turns out the plot was on Twilight's side in the form of a contrived, plot-hole ridden conspiracy involving an army of shapeshifters that nobody, Twilight included, could possibly have predicted!
  7. Season 1: The Show Stoppers Look Before You Sleep Sonic Rainboom (no, seriously; Rarity's characterization ruins an otherwise solid episode) A Bird in the Hoof Owl's Well That Ends Well Season 2: Baby Cakes Hearts and Hooves Day Dragon Quest Season 3: Too Many Pinkie Pies Season 4: Castle-Mania Bats! Pinkie Apple Pie (song aside) Simple Ways (without question my most hated episode in the entire series) It Ain't Easy Being Breezies Maud Pie Twilight's Kingdom Seasons 5 and 6: Tanks for the Memories Appleoosa's Most Wanted Make Friends and Keep Discord Party Pooped Literally every episode after Crusaders of the Lost Mark except for The Mane Attraction, Gauntlet of Fire, The Saddle Row Review, and The Times They Are a Changeling
  8. While I'd rather not see the show outright canceled, it needs a break of 3-5 years while some behind the scenes restructuring occurs. The show was hit and miss from day one, but the overall quality has declined enormously with Season 6, a trend that I feel can be attributed to the massive influx of new writers, a rushed production schedule, and the lack of a strong showrunner and story editor. Josh Haber's own episodes have ranged from dull at best to utterly abysmal at worst, and it's absolutely baffling that he's now in charge and directing other writers. Put bluntly, I feel that the show would benefit greatly in quality if he was no longer involved with it. The writing staff needs to be painstakingly overhauled from the ground up. While there are a handful of current writers that have shown promise and could merit staying, most of the recent additions deserve to go, if their early outings are anything to judge by. In their place, the staff needs writers who, going in, are already deeply familiar with the series and its characters, and who have a passion for the material they're working on. Friendship is Magic has a diehard fandom numbering in the millions, and while I realize that the overwhelming majority of those fans are neither superb writers nor qualified to craft stories geared toward television, rather than prose, in a timely manner, there has to be a handful of fans that meet those criteria. The trick, then, is separating the needles from the hay, so to speak. One approach would be for Hasbro to organize some form of community contest, in which fans above a certain age post stories written in accordance with the standards of a script for a 22-minute television program. Given the massive flood of submissions such a contest would receive, early screening would be done by the community itself, with the best works rising to the top through peer review, similar to the voting system FimFiction has. A second round of review from among these candidates would be done by specifically appointed judges. Individuals that made it past this phase would then be rigorously interviewed and subjected to additional tests, such as writing a script focusing on a certain character or incorporating a corporate demand into a story. In the end, a small team of writers would be assembled from those left standing, ideally one selected to provide a balanced set of strengths. The final component of the reorganized staff would be a new showrunner, someone who both has a strong understanding of the story material and possesses plenty of actual industry experience in management and editing, someone with a staunch dedication to quality control who knows when and how to salvage an idea and when to reject it entirely. Getting the right person for this position is absolutely crucial, and unfortunately would be no easy undertaking. Larson and McCarthy stand out as candidates, of course, both having held the position in the past; but while it is likely necessary for the showrunner to be someone who, in addition to being qualified, has actually worked on the show for a number of years, both Larson and McCarthy allowed numerous dismal scripts to pass through their scrutiny. Perhaps the position should be split, with a seasoned FiM staff member focusing on management and broad story direction, and another, potentially new, employee serving as story editor and quality control. With its composition restructured, the writing staff would slowly take the time to plan and assemble a season's worth of scripts. With the show on hiatus, they would be allotted far more time than usual for writing, with Hasbro focusing on airing new content for other properties (with the animation teams and other members of the FiM staff being temporarily reassigned to these properties) while relying on reruns, the fandom, and new toys to keep FiM relevant. While this extended writing time would inflate production costs, the difference would be fairly minor, considering most of the cost of episodes comes from producing scripts rather than creating them. In addition, 'promoted' fan writers could have salaries less than those of normal industry professionals. Given that they'd still be getting to write for the series they're so passionate toward, I doubt many of them would be dissuaded by such an arrangement. I freely admit that I have no inkling whether such an approach is genuinely plausible. I have no professional experience in any relevant area, and am ultimately basing my assertions on conjecture. However, I feel that this would ultimately result in FiM being better than ever, with episodes at worst still being fairly strong. Gone would be stories written by people who don't care about, or understand, the characters and are just writing for the next paycheck. In their place would be passionate love letters to characters that powerfully resonate with their writers. Even if this method cut into Hasbro's profits in the short term, it would rejuvenate the brand and help it remain strong for years to come, rather than gradually withering away as it draws closer and closer to becoming the sort of schlock that MLP was before Lauren Faust came along.
  9. She's shown to be an Alicorn in flashback scenes in A Canterlot Wedding where Twilight still lacks a Cutie Mark.
  10. Considering she was not only raised in Canterlot but somehow able to have a princess babysitting her before earning her Cutie Mark, there's no doubt that Twilight was born to very, very affluent parents. Frankly, it's mildly annoying that the show brushes this off as no big deal, considering that it just adds to the sense that she's a special snowflake favored by destiny in every possible way. After all, even if she hadn't been gifted with incredible mental prowess and a magical talent that screamed CHOSEN ONE so loudly that the supreme ruler of the land became her mentor and began grooming her for a magical ascension only done once before in all of known history, and even if said ascended individual hadn't been her babysitter for no clear reason and subsequently married into the family, Twilight would have been financially secure for life from the moment she was born. While, to her credit, Twilight did work very hard as Celestia's pupil, she could have squandered her talents and still had a far higher standard of living than someone like Applejack, for all her constant labor, will likely ever know. The game of life was massively rigged in her favor from day one. And yet, despite all that, we're supposed to buy that she's a humble individual who never took such things for granted. While it would likely feel out of place at this point, I think an opportunity was missed early on for a Rarity/Twilight episode exploring their contrasting perspectives on social/financial status. On the one hand, you have a low-born individual who has dreamed of high society since childhood and, through years of blood, sweat, and tears, worked toward reaching a place in it. On the other, you have someone who was born into high society and lacks any interest in it....but has never truly known any other life. There's the makings of a compelling dynamic there, and I would have liked to have seen what one of the more thoughtful writers on the show could have done with it.
  11. There haven't been any actual solo episodes for either Rarity or Pinkie all season. More importantly, there haven't been any meaningful character studies of either all season. With Pinkie, that's sadly par for the course, but for Rarity, it's an alarming departure from the norm of previous seasons, where most of her major appearances offered some new facet of insight into her, another piece of the puzzle that is her wonderfully complex psyche. Season 6 offers nothing of the sort. If she's not out of character (Gift of Maud, Spice Up Your Life, Cart Before the Ponies, and arguably AJ's Day Off), she's just sort of there (Gauntlet of Fire). Even Saddle Row, the best of the lot, brought very little to the table, considering opening up another boutique isn't actually character development or exploration in and of itself. Somehow, I doubt an episode dedicated to making Rarity, Applejack, and Pinkie seem like petty idiots who need Twilight to solve their problems will improve my outlook. For all her screentime, this season has resoundingly demonstrated that the bulk of the current writers have no clue how to properly utilize Rarity, and as such I feel that fans of her have every right to be unsatisfied. Of course, the same goes for most other characters as well. Poor Rainbow Dash has it even worse, and it's hard not to feel as though the staff is actively working to ruin her. The only character who's being consistently treated well is, quite ironically, Spike.
  12. Every day is Rarity Day. Celebration of the genius and wonder that is Best Pony is not something meant to be confined to a discrete period of time.
  13. I've never bought into the idea that the Sonic Rainboom being prevented would meaningfully alter the lives of all of the Mane 6 prior to Nightmare Moon's return. A number of them were well on their way to achieving their Cutie Marks without it, including Rarity, who even as a blank flank had developed ambitions based on her passions and talents and was hard at work learning the art of dressmaking. She knew what she wanted to do in life and was taking steps to achieve that goal, all without a magical event having to serve as a catalyst first, as it did for Twilight and Pinkie. If the Rainboom didn't occur, earning her Cutie Mark might take a tad longer, resulting in additional struggles with self-doubt, and I suppose it's conceivable that she would never master the gem location spell, thus limiting her financial success. Even so, Rarity is a very determined individual, and I have no doubt that, even with this additional adversity, she would have held fast to her dreams, continued to cultivate her gifts, and ultimately opened the Carousel Boutique regardless. Because of this, even without the Rainboom, Rarity would realistically develop into essentially the same individual that we meet in the first episode. And, though flawed, that individual is a fundamentally good person, someone who is so dedicated to spreading joy and beauty through her art that she was deemed Generosity incarnate. Given that Season 4 began one year after the series premiere, it can be inferred that the beginning of The Cutie Re-Mark takes place no more than two years after Nightmare Moon's return. This presumably holds true for the altered timelines, so the version of Rarity in question would have been serving Nightmare Moon for a relatively brief period of time. Although life under Nightmare Moon's rule would doubtless have been brutal, I do not feel that this is a long enough span to allow for such a drastic turn of character as we see in the episode, considering that this Rarity would still have spent the first two decades of her life as a wonderful person. Thus, I feel that her cold, aloof manner in the episode is nothing more than an act, a long-term facade carried out in the name of self-preservation, and perhaps something more. Upon seizing the throne, Nightmare Moon doubtless moved quickly to make examples of those who defied her, with dissenters facing imprisonment or worse. Sadly, individuals such as Applejack, who refused to accept a tyrant and lacked even a shred of duplicity, likely received such punishments. Seeing this, Rarity chose to bow, to play the part of a traitor willing to abandon her loyalties for the sake of obtaining personal status in the new world order. Just as she had carefully studied and adopted the mannerisms of the upper class in order to remake herself into a cultured lady, she donned a veneer based off of Nightmare Moon, deliberately seeming arrogant and cruel for the sake of appeasing the boundless narcissism of her new 'Master.' Armed with this new persona, she began doing her best to work her way up the social ladder, eventually worming her way into a position in Nightmare Moon's court. From there, she began carefully evaluating her options, looking for ways to influence events and start making the world a better place. At minimum, she sought to temper Nightmare Moon's wrath, nudging the dictator in more benevolent directions through making obsequious suggestions and subliminally promoting ideas through her art. At best, she would gain a position of trust at the despot's side, allowing her to one day discover and implement a means of freeing Luna from her monstrous inner demons, rescuing Celestia from her imprisonment, or even assassinating Nightmare Moon outright, thus liberating Equestria. --- As much as I detest nearly everything about The Cutie Re-Mark, I admit that this concept has intrigued me for some time. I've even entertained the notion of writing a story based on Rarity maintaining such a ruse and struggling not to lose herself in the deception, but I feel that doing the concept justice would be a colossal undertaking of several hundred thousand words, an endeavor that, given my extremely slow rate of writing and commitments elsewhere, is sadly beyond my realistic capabilities.
  14. For all the screentime she's had this season, Rarity has yet to receive an episode focused squarely on her. Furthermore, her major appearances this season have, for the most part, been thoroughly underwhelming and nowhere near the gold standard set by most of her episodes in past seasons. Saddle Row was quite enjoyable, to be sure, but it was ultimately an ensemble approach focused on the Mane 6 as a whole, and one limited to comedy, at that. As entertaining as it was, it didn't explore Rarity as a character or use her as a means of conveying complex themes. In Gauntlet of Fire, both Rarity and Twilight had completely superfluous roles. They were essentially there to provide commentary and give Spike someone to talk to. The episode could easily have been written without them. In both of their episodes, the Fox brothers have demonstrated a nauseating inability to pen anyone well, and that unfortunately includes our favorite fashionista. In Gift of Maud, she inexplicably loses any sense of composure while around the title character, and the episode ends with an incredibly out of character moment where she, the Element of Generosity, apparently fails to grasp the basic concepts behind gift giving, requiring an explanation from Pinkie that feels suitable for an elementary school student. In Applejack's Day Off, she fares little better, coming across as impatient, selfish, and lazy for most of the episode for the sake of making Applejack look good. Perhaps the most alarming of her appearances this season, however, is Spice Up Your Life. I'm willing to chalk up her characterization in Gift and Day Off to general ineptitude on the part of the writers, particularly since their grasp of every other character they've penned is little better. But Spice goes out of its way to use Rarity to convey its one of the worst, most out of character ways possible. Since her inception, Rarity has been the artist character of the show, a means for the writers to explore concepts concerning art and its relationships with society, business, and commercialism. Virtually everything about her as a character stems from this singular base. This includes her love of high society, which is strongly implied to be something she grew up viewing as a society of like-minded individuals, people more inclined to appreciate her art and create their own than the denizens of her backwater hometown. Similarly, her businesses exist for the primary purpose of allowing her to finance and distribute her art; as much as she enjoys the finer things in life, material wealth is not her first priority. Canterlot Boutique was a beautiful culmination of numerous aspects of her character, one that explicitly emphasized the importance of artistic integrity to her as a person. Sassy's business model offered Rarity incredible wealth and social standing, yet it left her deeply unsatisfied as an artist. Because of this, she was willing to close her new boutique, to sacrifice her lifelong dream, in the name of keeping her art from being further perverted, no matter the cost to her finances or reputation. The 'Rarity' we see in the first two-thirds of Spice Up Your Life is so opposite to this, so antithetical to the very foundation of the character, that one would half expect her to hail from a mirror universe dominated by goatees. She has to learn a lesson that she was teaching just last season, a set of values that have always been as natural to her as breathing. It's every bit as bafflingly egregious as an episode where Twilight has to be taught the importance of education or Fluttershy taught how to care about animals would be, and I cannot fathom why the script was not only written, but approved, particularly by a showrunner who claims that Rarity is one of his favorite characters on the show. Of course, Haber's own Simple Ways was itself an utterly detestable mangling of her character, so I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. Going back to the point of the thread, I can understand frustrations that Rare has received a disproportionate amount of screentime. Setting aside my own considerable bias toward the character, I agree that other members of the main cast deserve more time in the spotlight. However, given the above points, I feel it is perfectly reasonable for Rarity fans such as myself to continue desiring for her to receive at least one solid focus episode from the season.
  15. I'm not the best at assigning numerical ratings, but I'd give it around a 4/10. Week after week, I've been bored, disappointed, or outright angered by this season. Most of the show's veteran writers have left, and it painfully shows. No one except for Polsky, who continues to squander his talents on characters he doesn't write compellingly (Apple Bloom and the CMCs as a group), and Haber, whose episodes I've never liked to begin with, wrote for the first four seasons. Of the new writers that have worked on S6 thus far, only Lewis/Songco and Confalone have shown promise, and even they have mixed track records. Even the songs, almost always a highlight in past seasons, have been middling at best. I don't know if Ingram is overstretched or simply not synergizing well with the current writers, but he's lately fallen well short of his very high least in my opinion. Appreciation of music largely comes down to personal taste, after all. Exacerbating my frustration with the season's first half is that it's repeatedly focused on Rarity, whom I consider to be far and away the show's greatest asset, only to deliver very poor characterization on no less than three occasions. Today's episode in particular stands out, The one bright spot in this mess has been Saddle Row and Review. It feels like it's been ages since the show has been genuinely fun, and it was wonderfully refreshing to see a glimpse of the series' magic again, with excellent group chemistry amongst the entire Mane 6 and a constant barrage of jokes that were actually funny. But in the was nothing more than straightforward comedy. There was no substance to be found, no thematic complexity, meaningful character exploration, or powerful emotional resonance. Well done humor's certainly worth having, but I've come to expect more from this series. I loved Rarity Investigates last season, for example, but not half as much as I did Canterlot Boutique; as was the case with those two episodes, comedy and substance can compliment one another beautifully, but if asked to choose between one or the other, given equivalent levels of quality, I'll always prefer the latter.